Meet the Farmers

Flourishing into the Future – with Calixta Killander

Today we’re heading to Cambridgeshire to meet grower Calixta Killander who founded Flourish in 2017 which focuses on producing unusual produce for chefs. Initially a market garden Calixta’s enterprise has now grown to include fruits, vegetables, herbs, heritage grains, salads and flowers on 56 acres. Her ambition is to produce nutrient dense food and supply directly to her customers as well as create a truly regenerative farm that goes beyond most people’s expectations. Flourish was built on horsepower with Calixta’s two Comtois horses – Bill and Ben – doing all the farm’s fieldwork from ploughing to cultivating, muck spreading and weeding until 2020. They are now in retirement. But Calixta’s journey towards a life on the land did not start in eastern England but in the United States, where she spent 6 ½ years learning and honing her craft.


About Ben

Ben Eagle is the founder and Head of Podcasts at RuralPod Media, a specialist rural podcast production agency. He is also a freelance rural affairs and agricultural journalist. You can find out more at or 

Please subscribe to the show and leave us a review wherever you are listening. 


Follow us on social media

Instagram @mtf_podcast

Twitter @mtf_podcast

Watch us on Youtube here


A-Plan Rural Insurance

This episode is sponsored by our primary sponsor A Plan Rural


Show References

Farmer to Farmer Podcast

Image credit: Callixta Killander



00:27 Ben introduces the show.

1:50 Calixta comes in.

2:36 How does Calixta decide what to grow?

4:25 Growing peppers and chillies.

5:20 Heritage grains.

9:59 Sponsor message for A Plan Rural Insurance.

10:44 Calixta’s life growing up.

12:35 Calixta finds a university in the US.

13:54 Time in Hawaii

15:05 Why did Calixta come back to the UK? The story of the horses Bill and Ben.

17:04 Buying equipment from the Amish. 

18:20 Establishing the farm – year 1. 

20:40 Calixta turns up at restaurants. 

22:30 Working with restaurants.

23:54 Building a team.

25:26 The issue of recruitment and the labour issue. 

30:04 The workers are the most important. 

30:20 The issue of nutrient density. 

33:46 Sponsor message for A Plan Rural Insurance.

34:09 The challenge of climate and the weather.

37:29 Calixta’s vision for the future. 

40:02 Calixta’s message to the public.

41:17 Calixta’s message to farmers. 

43:34 Shout out for the Farmer to Farmer podcast.

44:35 Ben rounds up the show. 


Sign up to our newsletter

Be the first to hear about our podcast releases and rural insights by signing up for our newsletter.