the irresistible fleet of bicycles

Leave a comment

green farming in the green mountains: farmer training program at UVM


Applications are currently being accepted for UVM’s farmer training program! The six-month program offers a certificate in Sustainable Agriculture and provides students with a combination of classroom learning and hands-on experience managing the school’s 10-acre education farm. Each year, 25 students are accepted and learn everything from crop rotation to marketing. If you’re looking for an learning experience that is more formally structured (and probably more comprehensive) than the traditional farm apprenticeship, this program might be right for you!

The program runs May-October and is “designed for people interested in immersing themselves in sustainable, local food systems in a hands-on educational setting. Candidates include, but are not limited to:  new and beginning farmers, urban and community gardeners, farm educators and students interested in deepening their understanding of sustainable farming systems in an intensive and focused learning environment.”

You can learn more at UVM‘s website and order an information packet for the program. Admission is given on a rolling basis.


Leave a comment

usda makes another website


USDA has a new website and you can see it here.  Its purpose is to support new farmers and is pretty awesome.

We are thankful for the websites, USDA!

What we’d like is a national land bank that holds land in transition and allows young farmers to buy their way into ownership over the course of 30 years without having to face the rapid fire/ long waiting lists/ prejudiced bankers.

We can dream.




Leave a comment

2016 apprenticeships in regenerative agriculture in the american west



Starting a career in regenerative agriculture? Want to develop technical skills in grassfed beef production, dairy management and cheesemaking, or heirloom fruit tree cultivation and holistic orchard management?

The wonderful folks at the Quivira Coalition are seeking applicants for their New Agrarian Program‘s eight-month (March to Nov 2016) on-site apprenticeships at San Jaun Ranch in Alamosa, CO; James Ranch Artisan Cheese in Durango, CO; and Tooley’s Trees in Truchas, NM. All of these positions explore sustainable agriculture in the new American West and include a monthly stipend, housing, some food, and an education fund.
For more info contact: Sarah Wentzel-Fisher, Quivira Coalition New Agrarian Program Coordinator at Full position descriptions are available after the break.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

rewild! escape from monomania

monoculture_image_481_320Rewild! Escape from Monomania

by: George Monbiot

October 17, 2015, Rural America

Most human endeavours, unless checked by public dissent, evolve into monocultures. Money seeks out a region’s comparative advantage—the field in which it competes most successfully—and promotes it to the exclusion of all else. Every landscape or seascape, if this process is loosed, performs just one function.

This greatly taxes the natural world. An aquifer might contain enough water to allow some farmers to grow alfalfa, but perhaps not all of them. A loch or bay or fjord might have room for wild salmon and a few salmon farms, but if too many cages are built, the parasites that infest them will overwhelm the wild fish. Many farmland birds can survive in a mixed landscape of pasture and arable crops, hedgerows and woodlands, but not in a boundless field of wheat or soybeans.

Some enthusiasts for rewilding see reserves of self-willed land as an exchange for featureless monocultures elsewhere. I believe that pockets of wild land—small in some places, large in others—should be accessible to everyone: no one should have to travel far to seek refuge from the ordered world…

Read on here!

Leave a comment

farmland leasing workshop in virginia’s piedmont region

12106983_10153332847354833_3456374348579502226_nCalling all farmers and landowners! Are you a farmer looking for land to lease? What about a landowner who wants to lease your land? If this sounds like you, join Piedmont Environmental Council for one of two free workshops to learn more about leasing land, hear stories about current lease arrangements, and network with other land owners and land seekers.

Speakers include state and national land leasing experts. Keynote address with Kathy Ruhf, Senior Program Director at Land For Good a nationally recognized leader in farm entry, succession and tenure.

The workshops will take place from 1pm to 6:30 pm on November, 4 in Charlottesville, VA, and on November, 5 in Middleburg, VA.  For more information on the workshop and to view the workshop agenda click HERE.

If you are unable to attend the workshop but are interested in leasing land, you can download a copy of the Farmland Leasing For Private Landowners: A Short Guide.

The workshop is free but requires registration by October 30, 2015.


Leave a comment

apply to be a faith fellow

Fellowship dates: January 11 – 14, 2016 
Location: Stoneville, North Carolina

What: A holistic leadership development program for young North American faith leaders (we define “faith leader” broadly) who are exploring vocational issues focused in the areas of food justice, sustainable agriculture, climate change, and ecological resilience.

Why: There are too few leadership development opportunities for young faith leaders working on the issues posed by broken food systems, climate change, and ecological degradation, and yet these are issues that faith leaders and congregations need to confront head-on. Through this fellowship, the next generation of faith leaders will explore and deepen the inner resources needed to sustain their work. This program also provides an opportunity for emerging leaders to consider how they may further engage our pressing ecological issues, connect with other similarly committed leaders, and better tell the story of why this work matters for the life of congregations and people of faith.

Who: Young (age 40 and under) religious leaders who show exceptional promise. The 15 fellows selected will be people who already possess leadership experience in the program’s focal areas.

Where: At a quiet Franciscan retreat center in the North Carolina Piedmont, roughly 30 miles north of Greensboro, NC. The nearest airport is Piedmont Triad Int’l Airport (GSO). Volunteers from St. Francis Springs will shuttle people to and from the airport at no charge.  Fellows will share a room with one other fellow. Single rooms are available for those who need special accommodations.

When: January 11 – 14, 2016. Fellows need to check in by 1pm on Monday, Jan. 11th and will be free to depart no earlier than the morning of Thursday, Jan. 14th. Fellows need to be present for the entire fellowship. Based on experience level and congruence with our program, several fellows will also be invited to lead a workshop at our annual five-day Food & Faith intensive retreat in June, which takes place in western North Carolina.

To apply, click here.

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 692 other followers