VINEYARD, ORCHARD, AND VEGETABLE GARDENS
The farm has a two-year old vineyard of 250 wine grape vines: Chambourcin, Traminette, and Reisling grapes. When mature, these grapes will be made into wine at our Wamego Enology and Viticulture program.
NATIVE AMERICAN HEIRLOOM SEED GARDEN
Some of our heirloom seed varieties have been in cultivation for over 100 years with various northern plains tribes. We started with four varieties and have tried to add a few more each year. Our garden has been the home of Mandan sweet corn, Hidatsa beans, Arikara watermelon, Omaha pumpkin, Assiniboine flint corn, Mandan summer squash, and Seneca soup beans. Although we have sold some of these vegetables locally, the main goal is to help continue the production of seeds. We are currently in the process of trading heirloom seeds with the local Ioway Nation.
K-STATE RESEARCH AND EXTENSION
John Klinefelter’s will specifies that the farm can be used for experimental purposes so several of our projects have started to follow his intentions. Kansas State University Research and Extension conducts research in corn, soybeans, brome grass, and cover crops. Recently, KSU installed a small weather station at the farm which can be accessed online by anyone at http://mesonet.k-state.edu/ to see current weather conditions at the farm.
THE LAND INSTITUTE
Since the 1970’s, the Land Institute of Salina, KS has been working to develop perennial grains by crossing perennial native prairie plants with genetically related annual domestic grain plants. Their scientists are growing several types of sunflowers, miscanthus grass, and Kernza perennial wheat grass here in their plots.
Although HCC has had several credit classes in beekeeping approved by the state, we have found that most people interested in learning about bees and beekeeping are more interested in attending non-credit seminars and workshops.
A local Bee Chat group meets at the Klinefelter Barn the second Thursday of each month to have an informal conversation about bees. Attendees range from those who have kept bees for decades to those who are just getting started or are just interested in bees in general.
Cottonwood Hollow campground is located just below the barn conference center in a former gravel quarry. Its tall
majestic cottonwood trees turn brilliant gold each fall. The campground offers good wind protection with surrounding higher ground and cedars trees. Norton Bend campground in the west timber of the farm is just now being developed as an Eagle Scout project. It will have gravel tent pads, picnic tables, benches, and fire rings. Both campsites are for primitive tent camping only and are reserved for organized groups with proper supervision.
This year the Klinefelter Farm hosted its first art show featuring Reuben Iron Horse Kent from White Cloud, KS. This talented Ioway Tribe artist showed is artwork in several media and also entertained guests with his native flute music. The farm plans to host several area artist shows each year.
True North, a popular area band with several albums of original songs to their credit , played for the Grand Opening of the Klinefelter Barn in 2012. Beginning in January of 2015, the farm plans to host several concerts a year featuring area musicians. The barn has wonderful acoustic qualities suitable for acoustic music. Future plans include an outdoor amphitheater by the pond below the barn with terraced lawn seating.
WILDLIFE HABITAT IMPROVEMENT
The Northeast Kansas Quails Forever organization has planted native grass and wildflowers along a 2/3 mile long hedgerow on the farm with grain food plots in several breaks in the hedgerow. Several other habitat enhancing projects are in progress along the trail system. Bird watching platforms and nesting boxes are being built as part of an Eagle Scout Project and will enable the farm to host scheduled birding events.