One of things Roy Farmer enjoys most is spending time in his garden. A country gentleman, farmer and school bus driver, Farmer is described by most as a man with a “big heart.”
“My family for generations have been farmers,” said Farmer, 54 of Cranks. “There’s just no better feeling like gardening, especially at harvest time when you reap all your hard work. Everything starts coming in and it just surprises the heck out of you every year when you walk out and see all that fruit and produce just waiting to be picked and eaten.”
Farmer said by putting out a garden every year you can save money at the grocery store, especially during these hard economic times. He likes to encourage others to find a small plot and begin a garden.
“I have an old-timey fall green bean seed, which has been passed down in our family for the past 100 years,” said Farmer. “I garden approximately one acre each year, which includes things like tomatoes, corn, beans and potatoes. I do sell some of my produce — not my sweet and white potatoes. I have a homemade root cellar where I put them to last my family through the winter months. Me and my wife do a lot of canning, about 100 quarts each of green beans and tomatoes, peppers and onions.”
Along with garden produce, Farmer also has peach, plum, apple, pear and cherry trees. He said he is self-sufficient should the need arise.
“I like to sell some of my produce to others and I keep it cheap and reasonable enough that people can afford to buy things they enjoy eating. If they are regular customers, I give them an even better discount,” said Farmer. “Unfortunately, a lot of the younger generation is not interested in gardening. It’s a dying tradition if us older folk don’t try to keep it alive and well.”
When not gardening or working as a school bus driver, Farmer enjoys riding his BTX 1300 street bike. He said he and his oldest son, Josh, enjoy this pastime together. Farmer said he also enjoys fishing and hunting for game, saying he “never kills for amusement, but eats everything they bring in from the hunt.”
“I’ve been a school bus driver for the Harlan County Board of Education for the past 10 years,” said Farmer. “I really enjoy my job and being with the children. I have a real good bunch of kids. I drive from old Cranks Creek lake area to Cawood Elementary School five days a week.”
Married to Deborah, they have two children and six grandchildren. He said very proudly his daughter, Amanda Adkins, is attending college to become a nurse practitioner.
“My dad has been a good example to me as a person,” said Josh. “He has a very big heart. He’s tough, but loving and kind. I’m lucky to have such a great mom and dad.”
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