Day in the Life
Carole | Tulip Pond Farm — Maryland
It’s early morning at Tulip Pond Farm, but Carole has already been up for hours prepping for the day. As the sun rises over the farm, she gets the calves ready for their first feeding. It’s another normal day for Carole, but special nonetheless as she loves what she does.
Born to dairy farmers, Carole can’t remember a time when cows weren’t a part of her life. She has fond memories of growing up on a farm with her parents and brother. Carole knew she wanted to have a farm of her own someday, so when she met her husband, David, the rest was history! The two decided to settle in Maryland in the mid-’80s to start Tulip Pond Farm. Carole excitedly explains how it is to see her legacy continue with her daughter, Cathleen, who is now also a farmer at Tulip Pond: “It’s nice to see the younger generation take an interest.” Their older daughter, Carissa, also enjoys spending time on the farm and often brings her two little ones, Leroy and Loretta, so that they too can experience the charms of growing up on a farm.
Carole loves her job at the farm. One of her favorite parts of the day is caring for the babies of the herd—the calves. From helping them transition from milk to cow feed, to pampering them throughout the day, Carole knows that special attention to the youngest members of her herd is just as important as it was for her own children when they were younger. “Their life cycle is similar to our life cycle, and I get to be a part of that.” It’s a sentiment that she’s carried as a mother and now grandmother of two, especially as she introduces her grandchildren to the world of dairy.
As the 2018 recipient of the Maryland Soil Conservation Outstanding Cooperator Award, Carole understands what it takes to run a successful dairy farm in her community. Dedicated to soil health and sustainability overall, Carole and her family use various methods such as cover crops to improve the quality of the land for future generations to come. Sustainable farming resonates even more with Carole, as the future of farming is right in her own family. She says young farmers like her daughters, and the strength of family businesses, make her hopeful.
At their core, farmers are caregivers. Whether raising cows or raising babies, Carole understands the value of nurturing, and just how important a mother’s touch is to the success of a dairy farm. Her dedication and work ethic are reminders that women are capable of anything they set their minds to.