Bradley Weaver is a busy man, working often literally from sun up until sundown.
When he is not in the middle of managing his landscaping company, Bradley's Landscaping, Weaver is working on his Dawson County farm.
Managing the farm is a year-round responsibility, but Weaver said he gets some help from his parents, girlfriend and a handful of farm hands and part-time employees.
Weaver said the farm grows produce from spring until autumn, harvests pumpkins during the fall and then sells Christmas trees around the holidays.
"[We've got] Tomatoes, okra, beans, peas, lettuce when it's in season and some radishes," said Weaver. "I couldn't tell you how many pumpkins [we produce], just too many to count. Then Christmas trees, we sell a couple hundred Christmas trees."
Weaver said he has been around farming his entire life. His grandfather owned land and cows and originally purchased the land where Weaver’s farm is now.
"Since I could drive a tractor, I was driving a tractor and helping out with that," said Weaver. "Just kind of whatever needs to be done is what we do...now I help out with everything and we all have our part."
Weaver was in 5th grade when he and his family hosted a ribbon cutting for the farm with the Dawson County Chamber of Commerce. But Weaver’s passion for farming was planted many years before, when at age five he and his family planted their first pumpkin seeds.
"We put like four or five little pumpkin plants in the field and it was like 20 pumpkins or something like that, you know it wasn't anything major," said Weaver.
As those pumpkins grew, so did Weaver’s success both on the farm and financially. Weaver said he used the money from growing pumpkins to put him through college at the University of North Georgia.
"It was kind of tricky, because you're running a business and then you also have that goal of cash flow in college," said Weaver. "It meant a lot, not taking out any loans or debt or anything, and that's how we've run most of our company: debt free."
While they have been growing produce and pumpkins, Weaver and his family have also been expanding other features on the farm.
In 2008, they took apart and relocated a farmhouse that dates back to the 1890s from downtown Dawsonville to their property. The farmhouse now serves as a gift shop.
Weaver can speak from personal experience that owning and managing a farm is hard work. But it is something he enjoys and a labor of love he intends to keep growing.
"I look at it as more of a marathon, not a sprint, so last year we expanded our barn, next year maybe we'll build another pole barn, just slowly incrementing...just slowly go and see where things take us."
Bradley's Farms is located at 55 Lawrence Drive in Dawsonville. The hours are every day from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Small Business Spotlight is a periodic feature highlighting unique small businesses in AccessWDUN's 10-county coverage area. Have a business that you would like to see featured? Email the author at [email protected]!