Writing about the closure of a farm within city limits has echoes of microfiche readings from the 1920s when L.A. invented the suburbia that swallowed up our giant orange groves. One farm — the Tom T. Ishibashi Farm in Torrance — had managed to survive the evolution from rural to urban until now, and has the sad distinction of being the last in a long string of farms in an urban area that have ceased to be.
Tom Ishibashi passed away in May 2011, so the dimming of the legacy of his Torrance farm wasn't entirely unexpected. This particular family farm thrived for over 60 years, though the Ishibashi family has been working the land in and around the Bay Cities since the early 1900s. That's a long time to collect the accouterments of farm life — farm equipment and heavy machinery, packing materials, retail displays, and the various contents of the agricultural tack room.
If you're in need of some well-used and well-loved farm tools for your own agricultural endeavors, be it backyard or barnyard, or if you simply want a piece of the L.A. area's long and storied agricultural history, the Ishibashis are having a final farm sale: on Saturday, March 10, 8 a.m., at the stand at 24955 Crenshaw Boulevard in Torrance. Bid the stand a final farewell and offer up an Icelandic poppy tribute to the farm's legacy; LA Farm Girl, a.k.a. Judi Gerber, says the poppies always graced the stand every March.