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Once upon a time there was a fairy in the woods...
We reconcile productivity and ecology: by reducing plowing, by permanently covering the soil with plants that naturally bring humus and organic fertilization, by carrying out intensive rotations, including animals and green manures, by composing multi-species crops that mutually help each other in an ecological way.
Our plant sanctuary is located on a large 70-acre lot, crossed by two streams and surrounded by ancestral forests. We grow hundreds of perennials and annuals in an environmentally friendly way on a 6-acre plot of land dotted with wild areas that are a haven for birds and pollinators. We use regenerative agriculture methods that allow us to bring positive impacts on biodiversity and the balance of the ecosystems around us.
The cultivation of our plants is done by hand, the season starting in February, with the first seeds in the ground in our seedbed; we start growing in the greenhouse in March to quietly cross to the fields in May. The harvests and transformations are done when the plants are at the peak of their power. Since all our operations are located in the same place, the farm, we can guarantee you maximum freshness and increased quality monitoring. The plants are either dried directly in our large dryer at low temperature or extracted in our processing kitchen, within hours of harvesting, where we transform all the plants with great care in order to preserve their maximum of active ingredients.
The great adventure began in 2012. Following her studies in herbalism, Mariane finally acquired a farm in the Pontiac after quite a few property visits and a year of renting. The task was going to be difficult, being alone, and the farm being in a poor state; but what a beautiful dream! These were very good years of learning and clearing. Construction of the transformation building began in 2014 and took several years to complete. A whole panoply of woofers, friends, family members who came to help, some paid, others with a good heart. Crazy hours toiling away in gardens without machinery, without manpower, but also good shared meals and campfires under the stars.
Our Farming Practices
We believe in the complete cycle of agriculture, such as the seasons. As a herbalist who understands that the health of the soil is closely linked with our health, it is essential to work with Nature and not against it, everything being interconnected.
Being much more than organic farming or permaculture, regenerative agriculture would be the best way to describe our practices on the farm. Once our permanent beds are established, we only plow them every 3 to 5 years, if necessary. We never leave the ground bare, it's always covered either by green manures, or by straw mulch, thus protecting the differences in temperature of the soil, keeping the humidity and spacing out the waterings a lot in these times of drought and considerably reducing weeding.
We do not use any chemical inputs, the soil amendment and the fight against pests and diseases is done by nourishing the soil and bringing it into balance thanks to nutrients, manures, compost, fibers and microbial life; we have included animals in our intensive rotations. Sheep and hens feed and work the soil, in addition to eating harmful insects and bringing a certain autonomy at different levels thanks to their eggs and their wool which they give us, not to mention their beautiful company which changes completely the atmosphere of the farm.
For those unfamiliar with regenerative agriculture, it is a powerful practice as it helps preserve biodiversity in the soil, better filter water, capture more carbon, spark activity of microbiome of the earth, while producing in abundance. Did you know that a soil can contain up to 1 ton of earthworms per acre, true natural ploughmen. Thus, experts agree that soils rich in humus and biodiversity are among the most promising solutions for combating the climate emergency, while maintaining productivity and quality of production.
We offer powerful, fresh, local products, good for you and for the environment and the plants they contain all come from our farm. As for the non-farm ingredients, the majority come from local farms with ecological practices as well as a women's COOP in Ghana, Africa, certified fair trade and ecological practices. Our ingredients are 100% natural, without fragrances, without palm oil, without soy or corn or any other ingredient from GMO monoculture.
La Fée des Bois happy team !
Mariane Desjardins Roy
Herbalist, Farmer, Mom and Owner
Fervently passionate about regenerative agriculture, the local economy and especially the return to the land and self-sufficiency, Mariane believes that one of the greatest solutions to the multiple problems of our time is in taking charge of our health and well-being and our responsibility in our daily consumption and food sovereignty. As a little girl, her parents introduced her to gardening and nature very early on; she, who always walked barefoot, spent her time in the forest and had a passion for ''nice witches'', those who formulated remedies to help the community and who lived among animals and nature.
The profession of herbalist not being well known and promoted in high school, it took him a long time to discover it. After three years of intensive courses, she graduated in herbalism in 2011; she then founded La Fée des Bois and it was she who directed all the operations and created all the formulas there from the very beginning. For her, there is no separation between medicinal plants and food; these are products of the earth that must be grown in an ecological way to maximize their content of active ingredients and whose primary purpose is to nourish us and keep us healthy.
Newly mother of a beautiful boy who has brought even more sunshine into her life, Mariane's plans put even more emphasis on the educational side of the farm in the years to come, for the creation of a greener future.