We have been offering farm apprenticeships since 2008. We currently have four apprenticeship positions on the farm for those who are interested in learning about organic farming and how our farm operates. We offer a weekly stipend, cabin accommodations and a great learning opportunity. Our apprentices commit to working hard along side us and bringing enthusiasm to the experience.
We were both trained as apprentices on a number of MOFGA certified organic farms in the Northeast. We have experienced the rewards that a hands-on, “labor for learning” exchange can provide, and we feel committed to this model. We enjoy our roles as mentors and teachers, as we continue to develop our own farm. We feel our apprenticeship can offer a very comprehensive training due to the scale and diversity of the farm, as well as our commitment to train future farmers. For us, farming is both a challenging and viable means to make a living, and we enjoy sharing that enthusiasm.
We aim to share with apprentices all aspects of managing our farm. These skills include
- reading a soil test and a soil map
- managing covercrops as part of a vegetable rotation
- integrating livestock into a vegetable rotation
- reading farm financial statements, using Quickbooks and developing enterprise budgets
- tractor maintenance and operation
- tracking labor hours across multiple crops/tasks
- harvesting firewood
- greenhouse operations
- transplanting, weeding and scouting for pests and diseases in vegetable crops
- post harvest handling of all vegetable crops
- marketing vegetables through various market streams
- general animal husbandry (milking a cow, tending poultry for meat and eggs)
- repairing and maintaining farm buildings/general carpentry skills
There is a lot to it! Our farm is also our homestead, and we involve apprentices in homestead tasks as well, such as orchard tree care, maple syrup production, and food preservation and storage.
We were interviewed by farmer, author and podcast host, Chris Blanchard in 2017. You can listen to that interview here.
We are part of Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association's (MOFGA) well established apprenticeship program. If you are interested, please contact us directly or apply through MOFGA's Apprenticeship program.