A Visit to Sebul Farm: Sipping Hot Chocolate Overlooking Lake Sebu

Our 4-day trip to Soccsksargen with the Agricultural Training Institute Central Office, Regional Training Center (ATI-RTC) X11 and OABloggers brought so much fun, cultural immersion and new insights about the organic agricultural practices in Mindanao.

Time flies so much, I can't believe this trip in Region X11 is the 10th OABlogger Farm Tour since it started in 2011. The goal of #OABloggerAko is to explore and promote organic agricultural practices and farm tourism in the country. Personally, these travel experiences made a great influence in changing my lifestyle. Read my confession of a picky eater here.

Our PAL flight from Manila to General Santos International Airport was on-time and comfortable. We arrived at GenSan airport, the gateway to Koronadal and South Cotabato early morning of Monday. Travel tip, make sure to arrive at the airport ahead of your flight schedule to avoid delays and rushing to the gates especially when leaving Sox. From the airport, we traveled almost two hours to reach the summer capital of South Cotabato, Lake Sebu where Sebul Farm, our first organic farm destination is located.

From Sebul Farm overlooking Lake Sebu
The weather was hot when we arrived in General Santos City. On our way to Lake Sebu, the cool breeze touched my cheeks every time we would open the van's window to take photos. Not too long, we arrived at the beautiful laid-back municipality of Lake Sebu.

Farm owners Mr. William and wife Mayette Sy warmly welcomed us to Sebul Farm. Some healthy and filling snacks were served for the guests - purple corn, sweet potatoes and sikwate (hot chocolate).

Allow me to bring Sebul Farm to your screens through this video. Subscribe and leave a comment or give us a thumbs up.

Sebul Farm, Organic Farm in Lake Sebu

Sebul farm is a 4 hectares organic farm and a Certified Learning Site of the Agricultural Training Institute - Regional Training Center (ATI-RTC) X11. As a learning site, farmers are most welcome to come here to learn from William and his farmers. The farm teaches organic agricultural practices within the barangay and municipalities.

Farmcation at Sebul Farm
Before the farm tour, they ushered us to our rooms where stayed for two days. Ours is an inspired bahay kubo with silong, an area under the living room or bedroom that serves different purposes. It could be an open kitchen and dining area. Our room can accommodate nine persons. We have our private rest room and a balcony overlooking the farm and Lake Sebu. I shared the bed with Melody.

our home in Lake Sebu
overlooking Sebul Farm
The men's quarters is somewhat unique because of its structure and design. In fact, it's one of the favorite spots here in Sebul Farm, (try to Google Sebul Farm).

Our lunch comprises of fish, nilagang baka, and shrimp. Ending our good lunch is a cup or two of hot chocolate and freshly brewed Lake Sebu's coffee. The food is good. I love the fish, they call it "tulay" (bridge) fish and looks lika matambaka. The sinaing na hipon (shrimp), tasty but my favorite is the beef nilaga with pechay and herbs. It has good broth, refreshing and very tasty. The farm owners prepared lechon kambing (roast goat) for dinner.

What to eat in South Cotabato
What to eat in South Cotabato

Mixed-cropping and Square Foot Gardening in Sebul Farm

Lake Sebu is home of variety of crops and herbs, but the main produced is cacao. Familiar herbs includes blue ternate also known as blue vine or blue pea. The flower has shade of blue and white and resembles like a pea or butterfly. I'm quite familiar with this edible flower, they are usually serve in green salad, used in rice (gives the blue color in rice) and can be added to beverages. Blue Ternate has many healing benefits, one as a natural diuretic.

Mr. Sy advocates square foot gardening. On our way to bahay kubo, we passed by bed of arugula, rosemary, and many types of herbs.

Square Foot Gardening Ideas
Square Foot Gardening

Sebul Farm practices mixed-cropping using native ancient agriculture in watershed. Mixed-cropping means that the farmers sow more than two crops at the same time. Using ancient agricultural practices helps in preserving traditional forms of farming help maintain biodiversity and protects natural resources.

Grapes anyone? Sebul Farm grows abundant organic grapes.

Another innovation or practice that Sebul Farm is proud of is the use of Ram Pump Uphill Water System, a kind of water pump that does not need electricity or fuel to pump water. It works 24 hours, 7 days a week. There are several benefits of having a ram pump. It puts an end to carrying water jugs to and from the source. It helps in farming, growing crops and animal husbandry. Best of all it's zero pollution. 

Cacao Production in Sebul Farm

Sebul Farm has a wide array of crops and herbs with cacao as primary crop. These organic cacao beans undergo processing (sorting, grinding, moulding to packaging) to make tablea and cacao nibs.

Cacao Production in Sebul Farm
Meet Many Rudy Moyco, a long-time farmer at Sebul Farm. He showed us how cacao are produced and processed into tablea and cacao nibs.

the making of tablea and cacao nibs
Sikwate / hot chocolate

Sebul Farm Organic Products
Sebul Farm Products: Pure Hone, Herbal Tea, Coffee, Chili & Salt, and Dried Blue Ternate
Agricultural Training Institute Central Office
ATI Building, Elliptical Road, Diliman
Quezon City 1100 Philippines
Trunkline: (63-2) 9298541 to 49
Fax no. (63-2) 9209792

Sebul Farm
Brgy. Tasiman, , Lake Sebu, South Cotabato

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OABloggers with ATI and couple William and Mayette Sy of Sebul Farm
A Visit to Sebul Farm

It was a short but sweet farmcation at Sebul Farm. Lake Sebu is a must-visit when Cotabato. There's so much you can do, I highly recommend booking a staycation at Sebul Farm and try organic food. If you're adventurous, don't leave without trying the Water Tubing (as seen on the video above) and zipline at 7 Falls. For the women, rent a T'nalak cloth and have your photo taken. Special thanks to Agricultural Training Institute Central Office and ATI-Region X11. Stay tuned for more organic farm visit from Woman in Digital.


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