Meet the Tribe - Rita Bachmann
Each week we bring you the story of one incredible entrepreneur who can be found inside the Hatch Tribe Members Circle. Today we're excited to introduce you to Rita Bachmann of Rita's Roots Backyard Harvest (Rita's Roots, for short).
Are you an Early Bird or a Night Owl? Early bird for sure! Working outdoors keeps me extra connected to the Sun - when it rises, I do too.
What’s the first thing you do when you wake up? Check on my little one, then make coffee + hop on the computer while the house is still asleep
Favorite place to getaway from it all? On a boat in the river
If you could get an extra hour today, how would you use it? A Vinyasa Yoga class
Do you consider yourself more of an Introvert or extrovert? Introvert becoming skilled at extroverting.
What's your favorite food? Morel mushrooms
I'm on a mission to... connect people with the joy and health of growing their own food!
How did your awesome business come to be?
After graduating College of Charleston with a degree in Political Science and Sculpture, I (naturally, lol) began interning on an organic vegetable farm in NY. I fell in love with the self-sufficiency of growing my own food, working outdoors with my body and hands, having tasks change with the seasons, and the independence of entrepreneurship. I farmed organic vegetables for 7 years in many different capacities and was experiencing a bit of farmer burnout when my dad had the thought of an organic gardening consultation business. Rita's Roots Backyard Harvest was founded in 2011. In addition to installing organic vegetable gardens at homes and businesses, Rita's Roots provides top quality plants, supplies and monthly coaching to our clients to take the guesswork out of gardening. We planted over 60 gardens this season helping our clients enjoy a bountiful organic harvest from their own yards.
Who inspired you to pursue entrepreneurship?
My parents, a few close friends, and the farming couples I worked for both in NY and CA. My farmers worked tirelessly, but tirelessly at a creation of their own manifestation. They played by their rules, exerted their creativity in their fields and through their marketing, and answered to themselves and their clients who were grateful for their beautiful produce. My loved ones knew I had the drive and personality for self-employment success.
Have you ever had a mentor? And how did they help you?
Yes, the farmers I worked for in NY and CA. One of the most difficult aspects of being an entrepreneur can be self-starting and personal motivation. My farmers taught me how to show up + work hard, that efficiency could make quick work, and to push a bit harder than you think you can. They also taught me that at least one day off per week is mandatory to recharge. In additional to all of the technical information about growing, harvesting, storing, preparing and marketing vegetables.
How do you define success for yourself?
Success for me is working for myself, having happy clients + space to be creative within my business model, and having time off each week to spend with my family and friends.
We all love failure & flop stories! Tell us about something you tried in business that didn't work, and how you moved beyond it.
I really flopped the year I was lured out of state by the carrot on a stick of a "free farm". For many reasons the farm was anything but free! I quickly learned the lesson that Charleston has an amazing, supportive community for the organic produce business, and within the year I returned to find my place in it once again. Rita's Roots Backyard Harvest was founded shortly thereafter, so I look at that experience as a necessary (although rocky!) part of the path.
What is a recent success that you're super proud of accomplishing?
I started teaching Vegetable Gardening 101 classes this past year at my Container Garten Shop in downtown Charleston, and the response has been super positive! I am able to empower more people to begin growing their own food by teaching them what they need to know to get started, and by then providing the necessary supplies, plants and seeds at our seasonal sales and pop-up shop to get them growing on the best foundation possible. Advanced Garden Management classes coming soon!
What is your superpower?
Growing healthy, bountiful, organic food gardens.
What is the least sexy part of your job?
Working outdoors in the Lowcountry, particularly May through September, can result in a very sweaty Garden Coach! Not to mention the constant dirt under the fingernails and the farmers tan, lol.
What do you hope to learn from your fellow entrepreneurs in the Hatch Tribe Members Circle?
In connecting with the Tribe, I hope to learn how to make my business run more smoothly and how to create a business that will last through the long haul.