Native of Kathleen, Georgia, James Farmer is the author of the Wall Street Journal best-selling book, A Time To Plant (2011) Sip & Savor (2012), Porch Living (2012), Wreaths For All Seasons (2012), A Time to Cook (2013), and Dinner on the Grounds (2014), published by Gibbs-Smith Publishers.
Farmer’s love of Southern food and cooking have put him at the forefront of the garden-to-table lifestyle. James was taught as a young boy how to pull vegetables, herbs and flowers from the family farm and kitchen garden to provide much of the food, decor and flavor of his family’s everyday life. He developed an early appreciation for fresh, seasonal foods cooking at the side of his grandmother, whose Southern heirloom recipes he has revitalized for contemporary tastes.
With the passion for the land and Southern culture, he earned a degree in gardening design and then opened a landscape design company in 2005. Farmer was soon asked to consult on an important historic garden that needed restoration and updating. News quickly spread about James’ work, and the garden was soon featured in The Atlanta Journal and Constitution, Southern Living Magazine, Traditional Home Magazine, and ultimately in the book, Private Gardens of Georgia. James’ business soared in the Southeast as a result. At the same time, because of his love for entertaining using the bounty from the garden, he began creating floral arrangements and consulting on food for private parties and weddings held by a growing client list. Local media coverage of these very special events, and word- of-mouth have made a “James Farmer Party” in demand in the South.
In Spring 2013, James opened his design and antique store, James Farmer Inc., in downtown Perry.
James is the national spokesperson for The American Camellia Society, and is an editor-at-large for Southern Living Magazine. He has been featured on NBC TODAY, HGTV Gardens, Paula’s Home Cooking, Harper’s Bazaar, Good Housekeeping Magazine, Woman’s Day, Traditional Home, and The Local Palate. He currently serves on the Advisory Board for the Jules Collins Smith Art Museum at Auburn University and was recently recognized as a 2013 Young Alumni Achievement Award recipient.