Farm Apprentice Crystal Spring Farm
- Date Posted October 02, 2017
- Location Brunswick, ME
- Category Agriculture
- Job Type Internship/Apprentice
We produce over fifty certified vegetable crops, wild blueberries and pastured pork for a 500+ member CSA and wholesale. In addition we also produce high quality certified hay and bale age for other local producers. There are several barns, high tunnels and a greenhouse where we grow our own seedlings. We have 4 tractors that we use for tillage, transplanting, seeding, weed cultivation and vegetable/blueberry harvest.
An apprenticeship on this farm is an intensive leaning experience where specific training and responsibility are given freely. All aspects of the farm’s management are part of the apprenticeship. Training in fieldwork both by hand and with equipment, greenhouse propagation, harvest and handling techniques, marketing, financial systems and overall planning skills are examined and practiced over the course of the season. As of fall 2017 we have hosted 43 apprentices over the past 15 seasons and 23 of them are working in agriculture.
- Seasonal tasks: April: “planning systems” training, greenhouse seeding and care of starts, equipment training, field tillage and prep, seeding and transplanting.
- May: Greenhouse seeding and care of starts, more field prep, irrigation set-up, transplant and seed, silage/forage production.
- June: Greenhouse seeding and care of starts, transplant and seed, harvest for CSA and wholesale, weed control, haying.
- July: Greenhouse seeding and care of starts, transplant and seed, harvest for CSA and wholesale, weed control.
- August: Transplant and seed, harvest for CSA and wholesale, weed control, cover cropping, blueberry harvest.
- September: Harvest for CSA and wholesale, cover cropping 2nd crop forage procution.
- October: Harvest for CSA and wholesale, cover cropping, farm/equipment maintenance, put-away systems.
- November: Clean-up and close up the farm. Review the past season’s gains and losses. Talk finances and plan improvement for the next year.
Apprentices bring to the farm in hard work, focused minds and positive attitudes and for real experience in the fields, with the customers and with me directly as we problem solve our way through each season. In addition to “learn as you go” experiences the apprenticeship is structured around a weekly field walk to look at and talk about what is happening around the farm, informal ‘lectures’ on different systems at work here (irrigation, crop rotation, financial planning, etc), and time off to tour other local farms through MOFGA’s apprenticeship Farm Training Project. I learned how to farm organically by working for several talented growers around the northeast and I’m committed to the apprenticeship model of training the next generation of farmers.
Sound interesting? Please contact us for further information and an application. Compensation this position is PAID: stipend How to apply