Saturday, January 24, 2009

A Call to Farms (not arms)

I just got home from the Ecological Farming Conference in Asilomar. I haven't been for a while and I return refreshed and inspired. I attended workshops on soil carbon sequestration, community supported agriculture (surprise!!), biodiversity on farms and many others.

There are always many successful farmers at the conference and this year there was a pretty large population of young farmers. I felt hope for the future (there seems to be a lot of that going around) especially after meeting an enthusiastic young couple of California farmers. These two are excited to be starting up a new CSA farm in Solano County called Shooting Star Farm. The young man is a returned Iraq war veteran. He is filled with optimism and has this infectious smile. Farming is giving him this and he is sharing it with whomever he meets.

I also met a young woman who is a farmer and a film director/producer. She farms in New York's Hudson Valley and is full of creative energy. I am hoping to be able to present her film at Los Medanos College this year. She and her collaborators have a great blog called The Irresistible Fleet of Bicycles that can be reached at her film website. it out, I think you'll understand some of my hope.

We need new farmers!! The population is aging and not many kids have been choosing farming as a vocation. These, and many like them, are taking up the call to farms.


  1. I am highly (i mean on the verge of obsessed!) interested in community farming. Can you suggest a route to gaining experience in growing or even how I might managed to get paid a small amount so that I may live and aquire this experience? WOO! Excited. To be more specific, I'd like to go into the edible school yard area, just incase you have suggestions there too...

    I'm answering your call...

  2. Whitney,
    Where do you live? In the Bay Area there are SO many school gardens seeking people who can grow and teach. Kaiser Permanente funds some of them and Slow Food USA gives grants too. There are a lot of opportunities. Search the web for farm to school. Look for jobs listed on opportunity nocs and Good luck to you!!