Dave is known as the “Garlic Man”, or “Dr. Garlic”, in the Stevens Point Farmer’s Market and his certified naturally grown organic garlic is, “beyond organic”. Dave explains that he rejects USDA organic’s guidelines and doesn’t use anything unnatural. He has been growing garlic and other veggies for over 33 years. Dave said he didn’t set out to grow garlic, but that, “Garlic found me”. He actually builds the soil, not using any pesticides, which often kill beneficial insects, and claims to have the “purest” soil around.
Dave grows and sells a variety of garlic including Montana Giant, Georgian Fire, Persian Star, Killarney Red, Music, Chesnok Red, Romanian Red, and Georgian Crystal, all which have a distinct and unique flavor. People come from miles around to buy his garlic. Garlic is known as one of the world’s healthiest foods. Health benefits include being, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, cancer prevention, can reduce blood pressure, prevent colds, improve bone health and most recent research says it includes antioxidants that may help prevent Alzheimers and dementia.
Maplewood Garden’s is a division of Whistling Candleman Enterprises. Dave has been making pure maple syrup for over 44 years. His label was self-designed and originated many years ago when Dave made and sold candles out west. He used to play the whistle while he sold his candles, once bringing the attention of someone who was so inspired by Dave that he wrote an epic poem titled, “The Song of the Whistling Candlman”.
Dave said that at an early age, he, “Formed the habit of excellence.” and “Explores things seriously”. Dave has also made wine, making golden raspberry wine sweetened with maple syrup, where he grew and cultivated the land, planted the berries and made the maple syrup.
Not only is Dave a gardener but he is also an Artist, Wine Maker and Opera Singer. He is a man of many talents and has led an interesting and self-sufficient life. At the age of almost 74, Dave has worked 90 hours a week for most of the summer. He believes the work is good for him but hopes to slow down someday to return to other passions including singing opera and woodworking.
“Don’t just be one thing in life, be many things.”, Dave said, and explained that often times, “People separate themselves from their work”. Dave believes that we all have many skills and talents but often times people get lost focusing on one thing, while other interests or passions get lost along the way. Dave truly inspired me to continue to pursue my many interests and to fully embrace all of them.
Dave is truly one of the most inspiring people I have ever met. He acknowledges his many talents and interests and makes a point of excelling in them. He said he loves the farmer’s market because he gets to meet people and educate them on organic farming. He also shares his passion for healthy food and for sustainable gardening, excelling every inch along the way.
Next time you’re at the farmer’s market on a Saturday morning, stop by Maplewood Gardens for some great garlic, pure maple syrup and words of wisdom about organic gardening or life in general, you won’t be disappointed.