Introducing our new herb farmer and distiller

In the first of our ‘meet the team’ profiles, we’d like to introduce you to Rosie. Rosie is our herb grower and distiller who officially joined Summerdown’s farm team in May this year.
Rosie has worked in different areas of the agricultural sector, from harvest work driving tractors and trailers at Summerdown, to being a shepherdess looking after over 2,000 ewes and their lambs. After three summers of tractor driving, we were delighted Rosie accepted a full-time position at Summerdown as an apprentice under our Master of Mint, Ian. Rosie carries on a long tradition of women working on our Hampshire farmland where from the 16th – 19th centuries, it was run by the women of the Kingsmill family. We sat down with Rosie over a cup of her favourite drink, peppermint tea (naturally!) and learnt a bit more about what makes Rosie tick, on and away from the farm.
What's your favourite Summerdown product?

My favourite Summerdown product is the Room spray from the Body, Bath & Home range, the Heritage fondants from the chocolates and the Peppermint tea is my favourite drink but it's hard to pick an all round favourite!

What's the most interesting fact you've learnt whilst at Summerdown?
How long our (75km!!) hedgerows are and how many wonderful species of butterflies the farm is home to!
Your favourite place on the farm?
This has to be the view from the double gates at Hook looking across over Beestings, Ash House and fox Dell. You can see so many aspects of the farm. Behind you, is a field of camomile and to the right behind you is woodland, home to so many species of wildlife. In front of you are three of our arable fields which this year were planted with cereal crops with trial plots in, all surrounded by our conservation strips to protect and house local wildlife.
Your favourite herb?
Peppermint of course! It’s so special and unique to our farm, I love the story, the smell, the taste and everything that comes with it!
Do you have a favourite piece of farm machinery?
This would be our new leaf/flowerhead picker. It’s done a wonderful job for this year's harvest.
What's your favourite food?
My favourite food is definitely Hunters Chicken, especially cooked by my best friend Harriet, she likes cooking it and I like eating it!
What do you most enjoy about working at Summerdown?
The best part of my job definitely has to be working with the essential oils, especially when we’re distilling and members of the public pass by and ask what we’re steaming today! It’s such a unique job, I’m so pleased to have been taught by Ian the Master of Mint himself.
And the worst part?
I genuinely don’t believe there’s a bad bit about my job. The only thing I’ve slightly not enjoyed since joining is having the inter row cultivator blocking up and having to dig it out in the middle of a heatwave!
Spring, summer, autumn or winter?
It’s a tough one but I think it has to be autumn, after all the hard work bringing in harvest is over, all the leaves are on the turn and the nights are drawing shorter, we definitely have the best sunsets in autumn!
Night in or out?
I was going to say a night in is nice but who am I kidding! I love spending time out and about with my family and friends especially with a gin in hand!
Home cooked food or a takeaway?
I’d have to say home cooked food, it’s a lot heartier and healthier!
Coast or countryside?
As much as I love the English countryside, the coast has to be my favourite! Being on the beach and exploring the coastline is definitely my favourite place to be!
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