Since we like to eat fresh, locally grown produce, we work to provide the kind of produce we’d look for to purchase. As an urban farm-to-table grower, our business encompasses the best in fresh, garden-sweet product, grown clean and promoting the best practices in “green” living.
My Sweet Greens MN is an urban farm-to-table grower located in Zumbrota, Minnesota. We are small, but have big dreams!
We’ve been told, we need to write our story, to share and engage with our customers and market.
Our story: Two people tired of working day jobs, want to exit the corporate world, and get back to what’s real, what has meaning, what feeds our family, and our soul.
But that’s not really much of a story.
Dean and Jayne – a sweet story.
We met in 2014 and began dating, knowing we were both serious about finding a life partner. Three months into our budding relationship, Jayne had an unfortunate accident, resulting in a nasty tibia-fibula fracture. Ambulance, surgery, hospital stay and three days later, Dean brought her back home to her apartment. It’s quite an unusual way to grow a relationship.
While we’d never recommend this crash-landing trauma and drama style of relationship building, it allowed time for lots of conversation about life: our experiences, lifestyles, parenting style, financial challenges and most of all, our deep, abiding faith in God.
Broken leg mended, we married in September 2015 and began our life together in Zumbrota. Frequently our conversations turned to farming. The summer of 2016 Dean planted a garden on a friend’s farm. The soil was sandy, hard and had a hearty crop of weeds. He watered, a lot, pulled weeds a lot more, and gave it his all. We got a few small, not particularly flavorful vegetables. With little to show for his efforts, his enthusiasm and excitement about growing things grew. He was not at all defeated, but rather was ready to do more. So we began looking at season extension and ideas.
As we researched, and watched hours of “dirty movies” – i.e. YouTube videos on composting, organic growing, soil composition, planting methods, watering methods, seeds and seed sprouting – microgreens kept coming to the forefront. We realized we could grow microgreens inside, in our heated garage, and maybe those could become the “seedlings” of a new business.
My Sweet Greens MN – a sweeter story
My Sweet Greens MN was born in 2016. We bought a URL from Go Daddy, seeds from Johnny’s Seeds, flats and soil from Walmart and started growing trials. Combining Dean’s passion for farming and Jayne’s keen interest in marketing and promotions, a business sprouted.
2017 was been a year of setting up infrastructure, developing processes and putting business foundation pieces in place. We both maintained full time jobs, making for busy nights and weekends tending to our business goals. As we grew our trial microgreens, experimenting with flats, seeding protocols, lighting, temperatures, Jayne began bringing in harvest samples to the Executive Chef where she worked. He would look them over, taste, compare with what he’d been buying from the local commercial produce vendor and share what he was looking for.
One day he asked, “You have microgreens to sell? I want to stop buying from the commercial vendor.” Our first customer!
We participated in two exhibitor shows in 2017 – Radish Magazine Healthy Living Fair in August, and Feast! Sponsored by Renewing the Countryside in December. These were great experiences – learning how to set up our booth, share samples with attendees, produce educational materials, recipes, and start to introduce microgreen goodness to our local market. We hob-nobbed with other growers and small businesses – invaluable connections.
Dean set up a small greenhouse, with free and scavenged materials (upcycling!) and proceeded to move it to and fro in the yard, to allow for best sunlight, or best cooling depending on the progression of seasons. In the fall, Dean stripped sod off a spot in the yard, worked up the soil. Over that newly prepared bed, we added second and third season extension greenhouses planting spinach, kale, Cressida, Pok Choi, Mizuna, Arugula and a few various microgreens and herbs.
We grow a variety of microgreens. Check out our products:
We have 14 chickens which we keep for eggs, and their silly entertainment value.
2018 has been a great year of getting out into several communities at farmers markets, pursuing more retail and restaurant sales opportunities and increasing our knowledge base and experience. We have enhanced our product lines with additional microgreen varieties and some salad greens. It’s been a very busy summer, and we wouldn’t change it for anything.
Catch us at Winter Farmers Markets, 2018-19, area Co-ops and fine dining Restaurants
Winter Farmers Markets
|Faribault Winter Farmers Market||Saturdays November – April (See Facebook page for dates)
1:00 to 4:00 pm
Starting Nov. 17, 2018
|Paradise Center for the Arts
321 Central Ave.
Faribault, MN 55021
|Rochester Downtown Farmers Market – Winter Market||Saturdays November – April (See website for dates)
9 am – 12:00 pm
Starting Nov. 3
|Graham Park (Olmsted County Fairgrounds)
|Just Foods Co-op||See website for location and hours||516 Water Street South
Northfield, MN 55057
|Bluff Country Co-op
|See website for location and hours||121 W 2nd Street
Winona, MN 55987
|Spiral Natural Foods Co-Op||See website for location and hours||1250 S Frontage Rd Hastings, MN 55033|
|Lord Essex Steakhouse||See website for menu and hours||20 2nd Ave SW
Rochester, MN 55902
|Firefly Coffee Co.||See website for menu and hours||12 Church St.
New Market, MN 55054
|Blue Heron Coffeehouse & Sandwich Shop||See website for menu and hours||162 W 2nd Street
Winona, MN 55987
Meet the Team
Dean Bredlau, Farmer Extraordinaire
All things soil, compost, plants, animals – Raised (and loved!) working on his family’s dairy farm.
Bachelors in Chemistry – 10+ Years Quality Assurance Experience – food safety, food quality
Dad to Hannah recent high school graduate; Rachel, 2019 high school graduate to be.
Jayne Bredlau, Farmer’s Wife
All things digital – Website tech, company branding, email, marketing, etc.
Many things production – harvest line worker, QA Enforcer, packaging pro
Mom to four grown children: BJ & Rachel Clare (granddaughter Shaelyn), Rachel Joy, Christopher and Heidi
Step-mom to Hannah and Rachel B.