Three years ago, I was a trainee in a program for beginning farmers that hooks up new farmers with experienced mentors. Jascha was a trainee in the program two years ago. And this year, we've come full circle... we're the mentors now!
That means we have three lovely trainees on our farm every Thursday. Each of them are beginning their own careers as farmers, and each have a special interest in growing cut flowers.
Carin (above left) is starting Ladybrooke Farm in Monkton, MD. She and her husband will grow everything from flowers to fruit trees, and they're doing chickens, honeybees, and other livestock too. I can't wait for the duck eggs in their business plan... yum.
Peter (above right) is starting Petal & Root Garden. Speaking of full circle: his farm is on the same plots that I started out on at Whitelock Community Farm in Baltimore. That space couldn't be in better hands now!
Brittney (above left) is the new manager at Boone Street Farm, an urban farm in the East Baltimore Midway neighborhood. The position provides the opportunity for her to learn about making connections with the community surrounding the farm, plus managing a farm.
I can't possibly convey how much fun Thursdays are with Jascha, Brittney, Peter, and Carin. Because there are so many of us, tons of work gets done and we don't have to rush about it. There is plenty of time for teaching, as well as giggles.
The trainees each have lots of experience, so we're learning just as much from them! Carin taught me how to break apart the roots of a ninebark tree before planting yesterday. Peter requested to learn about fertigation (fertilizing through irrigation) and Brittney requested a lesson on propagating with cuttings, so that's on the list for next Thursday.
Planting at the farm has never been so easy and quick. Thanks, Beginner Farmer Training Program and our 2016 Trainees!
It just takes a village, ya know?
I wish you all a Matzah. With PB and honey.