A Growing Season
A Growing Season follows vegetable farmer John Gorzo Jr. and his family over eight months on his farm in the Holland Marsh, located north of Toronto. This growing season gets off to a cold, wet start in April delaying the planting season. As he waits for things to dry up, John and his workers spend time doing routine tasks around the farm. Fortunately, things begin to improve by late May. He has crops in the ground and some of his acreage has plants sprouting up. But it's already getting dry and John is forced to get out the irrigation to keep things moist. By July, it's hot and dry and irrigation day and night has become crucial to keep the crops alive. John walks through his fields and is happy with how things are growing. They are beginning to harvest a few crops already and that can't begin soon enough. John admits the bill collectors are calling and money has been in short supply. The entire Gorzo operation is into full harvest mode when August rolls around. A number of crops are being harvested daily for delivery to markets in Toronto. But the days are long... sometimes John is working from 3 am to well past 10 pm over the same day. In early September, John is beginning to harvest his onion crop. Due to the dry conditions, the onions are smaller than he would like. He talks candidly about the marketplace and how hard it is for farmers to make a decent living. Things continue to be tight money wise and he wonders how things are gong to end up this season. A few weeks later he continues to struggle to get the crop off as the colder fall weather begins in early November. The family has only managed to cover their bills this year after selling some land John had purchased years earlier. As the documentary concludes, John admits that he'll likely need to get a job because he's made so little over the past year. A growing season is over but it looks as though John is unsure if he wants to endure another.
“John Gorzo Jr. is a sincere gem, which made A Growing Season as genuine, understated, humble and wonderfully Canadian as any film production I’ve ever seen.” Marshall Ward, The Waterloo Chronicle
“ This intimate, pull-no-punches story strips away our bucolic fantasies and reveals how incredibly hard farmers work to produce the food we eat… Bravo!” Laurie Walters, Ironweed Films
"If you care about where your food comes from and want to understand the travails of getting it to your table, you must watch this documentary.” Andrew Coppolino, The Food Show