BOOTSTRAP @ FORAGER FARM – THE FARMING COMMUNITY

By Hannah Moser of Forager Farm Creating a community of food lovers has always been at the top of our to-do list. A community that is centered on food but goes beyond just the consumption, one that supports sustainable practices in not just farming, but day-to-day living. Our first year of operation hasn’t allowed for much community building. In fact, it hasn’t allowed for much beyond just surviving. We realized quickly we bit off more than we... Read More

BOOTSTRAP @ WILD RIDGE FARM – FARMER TRAINING

By Alissa of Wild Ridge Farm It was clear from the beginning of my farming internship at Chubby Bunny Farm that my boss, Dan Hayhurst, loved the work of growing vegetables. Most mornings I would be lying in bed, just waking up around 6:30 am, and I’d hear his truck roll up to the barn. I’d listen as Dan got out and started hauling sacks of feed out of the barn to drive out to the small flock of chickens and few pigs on pasture. This was my cue... Read More

BOOTSTRAP @ FORAGER FARM – WHERE POLICY MEETS THE NEW FARM

By Hannah Moser of Forager Farm As a first-year farm selling direct-to-consumer vegetables policy is not something we’ve had to deal much with as of yet. However, the overarching Food Safety Modernization Act or FSMA rules still to be implemented tend to hang over the decisions we make as a farm in the next couple of years. We have plans of integrating livestock into our vegetable operation, including a small goat dairy as well as laying hens and... Read More

BOOTSTRAP @ FORAGER FARM – MARKETING THE STARTUP FARM:

By Hannah Moser of Forager Farm I’ve always viewed marketing as telling a story and there’s no better story to tell than the one of growing food and community. I feel a bit biased discussing marketing in farming. Before I decided to be a farmer, I was a marketer. I have a degree in Public Relations and Advertising and have done a lot of self-teaching on graphic design and web design. Therefore, I knew from the beginning that we’d have to create... Read More

BOOTSTRAP @ WILD RIDGE FARM – MAKING THE RIGHT CHOICES ON FARM EQUIPMENT

By Joseph Dittman of Wild Ridge Farm If the farmer paused briefly from his ceaseless toil, taking up pen and paper to list the various equipment he relies on continually in his daily labor, an afternoon would surely be lost and the farmer would retire to bed with cramps in his writing hand. Roller tables, harvest crates, wash tubs, pruners, hand hoes, soil knives, drip tape, row cover, lay flat hose, pitch forks, spades, backpack sprayers—hundreds... Read More

BOOTSTRAP @ FORAGER FARM – ON TRAINING AND LEARNING

By Hannah Moser of Forager Farm Every single week we learn something new. We never stop learning. Farming is a profession where your weakest link and your biggest problems are apparent almost immediately. When Jonathon and I decided to start Forager Farm, we had a combined vegetable growing experience of roughly 10 years. We also had one full CSA season under our belt from our time spent working and learning at Captain’s Creek Organic Vegetable... Read More

BOOTSTRAP @ NIGHTFALL FARM – BUILDING A FARM FROM SCRATCH

By Nate Brownlee of Nightfall Farm The differences between working on an established farm and starting your own were evident this month. Rather than learning the ropes and falling into developed routines, we’re recreating some systems that have worked on other farms. We’re solving problems unique to our farm. We’re spending a lot of time cobbling together equipment and systems. And often, that costs money. The animal groups we are raising this... Read More

BOOTSTRAP @ LEMONADE SPRINGS FARM – MAKING DECISIONS ON EQUIPMENT

By Seth Douglas of Lemonade Springs Farm The question of equipment and capital, it seems to me, is really a question of what decisions you make about your daily work and your financial equilibrium and why you make them. Questions we ask regarding both tools used and money spent (both whose and how much) are those of means and ends- what will the application of a particular sort of funding or a tool mean to the possible success or failure of the farm,... Read More

BOOTSTRAP @ FORAGER FARM – ON EQUIPMENT AND CAPITAL:

By Hannah Sargeant of Forager Farm Unlike many other young farmers, we had access to land even before we made a concrete decision on whether to grow vegetables or not. We were fortunate enough to have family and friends willing to rent us a slice of land. Ultimately, we decided to rent land from some of our friends. This option allowed us access to some equipment as well as a place to live. Renting versus buying, whether land or equipment, allows... Read More

BOOTSTRAP @ FORAGER FARM – EACH SEED HAS A STORY

By Hannah Sargeant of Forager Farm Each seed has a story. Some seeds have been passed down relatively unchanged for generations. Others have been breed for certain characteristics and traits. And others have been adapted for climates like North Dakota. In developing our seed order, it became apparent that we need seeds of all kinds (except GMO) in order to deliver quality product to our customers. Many of the seeds we purchased we’ve grown before... Read More

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