"I’m trying to figure out how big I want to get, and what farming means to me. How much do I want to sit on a tractor versus how much I want to touch the soil and touch my plants? I think It's important to keep that connection between me and the plant as much as possible."
Shea Belahi grew up in central Illinois. After exploring several careers, Belahi enrolled in the Central Illinois Farm Beginnings class, a year-long ‘farm school’ program. She spent a year working on a small piece of her uncle’s conventional farm, but due to poor soil and potential pesticide and herbicide drift, it was not a sustainable operation. Belahi went on to operate Heirloominous Farm, growing watermelons, potatoes, tomatoes, peppers, onions, kale, herbs, and more. Heirloominous Farm was an incubator partnership with Wes Jarrell and Leslie Cooperband of Prairie Fruits Farm and Creamery, situated on two-thirds of an acre within this farm. Shea Belahi has currently begun working at Blue Moon Farm in Urbana.