College of Agricultural, Human, and Natural Resource Sciences

Sheep Farm and Wool Mill are Final Stop for Farmer-to-Farmer Series

EVERETT, Wash. – Nestled in the Cascade foothills between Monroe and Sultan is a unique small farm. Gretchen and Rob Wilson nurture a small flock of rare Cotswold and Friesian sheep. After shearing, they utilize the wool for several value-added products including homespun yarn and wool rugs. In addition, Friesian sheep, known worldwide for their milk production, help provide the Wilson family with great milk, wonderful cheese, soap, and even meat for the freezer.

Washington State University Snohomish County Extension’s Farmer-to-Farmer workshop series will end its first season with a visit to Gretchen’s Wool Mill at Quiet Waters Farm near Monroe. The farm tour will be held on Monday, Oct. 6, starting at 10 a.m.

You’ll meet the Wilson family flock and see how they are put to work providing milk, wool, and meat in a subsistence farm system. You’ll also learn how fiber from sheep, llamas, and alpacas is washed, picked, and carded in preparation for spinning, felting and other fiber arts. Besides processing their own animals’ fiber, the wool mill also custom-processes fiber from other farms, providing the farm with another revenue stream.

All Farmer-to-Farmer events start at 10 a.m. Cost is $15 per person. Pre-registration required and space is limited. To register, download the form at www.snohomish.wsu.edu/ag/workshops/workshops08.pdf and mail with your check.

Driving directions to the farm and registration are also available by calling Karie Christensen at (425) 338-2400, or e-mailing klchristen@wsu.edu.

For more information on the series, contact Kate Halstead at (425) 357-6024 or e-mail khalstead@wsu.edu.?

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