Editor’s Note: This is the last of the profiles from the Market Place on Broadway.
Ken and Denise Jones have been a team for a long time, both of them life-time gardeners and married for 24 years with 3 children and 10 grandchildren, ages 6 months to 20 years. This is only their second year at the Marketplace on Broadway, but the unique heirloom tomatoes from Blue River Produce are already a favorite of many shoppers. When asked how they started growing that particular crop, Jones said, “We tried them and liked them, but they are difficult to grow,” he said.
Products: The Jones’ products include varieties of tomatoes, okra and peppers in season. Denise learned the finer points of canning from her Granny as a child. She still uses recipes passed down from her Grandmother York, affectionately known as “Yorkie” to family and friends. Jams, jellies, preserves, relishes and tomatoes line the sales table at Blue River Produce, displaying the beautiful colors of fruits and vegetables. The Joneses plan to expand their growing space next year by adding another greenhouse to their property.
Traditions: The Jones’ traditions are always family-oriented and include fishing, family outings and reading stories. Ken is well-versed in how to catch fish since he was the owner of Ken’s Bait and Sporting Goods Shop in Tishomingo for many years. He also served as Undersheriff in Tishomingo. Both Ken and Denise agreed that being farmers has been the most satisfying career they’ve ever had. “Every day is fun with something new to learn,” Denise stated.
“We get tired because it is hard work, but we love it,” she said with a smile. Ken nodded his head in agreement as they turned to greet a customer.