“I’ve got all of that property out there…wonder what I could do with it?”
-Wolf Kuhlemeier, 2008
Fast forward to 2017, when Wolf and Alex Kuhlemeier have proven themselves pioneers as local producers in the Llano Estacado region. As a co-founder and past President of the West Texas Growers and Producers Association, Wolf is a true advocate for urban agriculture.
Upon meeting at the farm, I am warmly greeted by Wolf, wearing his business suit: farmer’s tan, pen attached to t-shirt, sunglasses, and work boots. Wolf’s wife and business partner, Alex, is unable to make it, as the couple recently welcomed a new member to the wolf pack, baby August.
“Where should we start? How about a tour of the farm?” With a farmer’s common chivalry, Wolf proudly shows me the lay of the land.
Located approximately ten miles west of Lubbock, Wolf Creek Farms sits on about one-and-a-half acres. Wolf and Alex utilize this acreage to grow non-GMO, non-chemical, mostly heirloom wildflowers, herbs, greens, strawberries and potatoes, in a bee-friendly environment. Among the popular products are varieties of kale, spinach, and lettuce. And let me tell you, I tasted a strawberry…I’ll be coming back for more! The farm has 6 to 12 beds in constant rotation, so that goods are available at all times.
Like most consumers, I am anxious to learn how Wolf Creek Farms and Ravenhouse Bakery were established.
Wolf migrated to Lubbock from Oklahoma around 2000, to care for his mother. After working in marketing for some years, he decided it was time to connect with the land.
“I got sick of sitting behind a computer. I thought, ‘I’ve got all of that property out there…wonder what I could do with it?’”
While checking the crops, Wolf says, “The economy wasn’t great in 2008. I had gardened as a hobby, and knew I could do something with this land. I thought there had to be room for more diverse crops in West Texas.” After thorough research, Wolf started small: tomatoes, herbs, ect., but it was his homemade laundry soap that kept him afloat the first year.
“It wasn’t easy starting out. The downtown farmer’s market was established in 2010, so this market-style business was new to the area,” says Wolf. “But it began to grow. People want to know where their food is coming from. The interest in local foods has certainly raised our stock. We’ve had regular customers for about 5 years now.”
With a growing customer base, Wolf encouraged Alex to start her bakery. “She always liked making goodies. And she’s amazing at what she does. She outsells me!”
Ravenhouse Bakery provides baked goods year round. Pumpkin streusel, French bread, and strawberry donuts are some of the mouth-watering items on the menu.
As we wrap up, Wolf tells me about the goals of the farm: to start providing to local chefs and restaurants, host educational opportunities at the farm, and most of all, continue to be a fair steward to the land.
Wolf Creek Farms and Ravenhouse Bakery are names well known to regular market-goers. Don’t miss out on the famous Italian Herb bread and Honey Buttermilk loaves!
You can find Wolf and Alex, (and maybe baby!) at the Farmer’s Pantry, and the local farmer’s markets on Saturday mornings:
Follow them on social media, or contact them @ 806-853-7901 if you’re interested in learning more about urban farming!