News and blog
Wanna get down and dirty with Earth Spring Farm??
Earth Spring will be offering Work Share opportunities to a small group of 20 people in 2013. Work Shares at Earth Spring Farm are a great way to learn about organic produce farming in a hands-on setting!
Work may include seeding in the greenhouse, transplanting in the field, harvesting, washing and packing produce, selling at farm stands, and much more! Work Shares will run May through November each year. There is a minimum 6 hour weekly commitment although many give 8-10 hours. In exchange for your hours of work each member will receive a small size box of produce, and a fruit share.
For more information CLICK HERE. If you are interested, please call Farmer Mike at 717-805-7778!
We already have some great submissions, but the door is still wide open for a few more days!
We have a challenge for you... we have completed our 3rd year of our CSA, and as we move forward, we...well... want a memorable logo to go with our name! We are looking to our community of supporters to have the chance to be a part of it. We are leaving it wide open as far as creativity, but have turned to some friends for help with some technical guidelines.... Our preferred file types are high resolution vector files (eps, pdf, tif, jpg, png) sized at 300 dpi (dots per inch).
Talent doesn't go without reward... the chosen logo creator will receive a LARGE CSA box for the entire 2013 season (that's a value of $500-600!). Get your pencils and start sketching! Send your submission to us at firstname.lastname@example.org. The deadline for submission is FEBRUARY 1, 2013.
Questions? Give us a shout.
General information about the farm:
Earth Spring Farm grows non-certified organic vegetables for over 300 CSA members in the south-central Pennsylvania and Washington, DC area. Our CSA members receive 20 weeks’ worth of spring, summer and fall crops. Alongside our CSA we participate in 3 weekly markets in Washington DC (Mount Pleasant), Carlisle and Camp Hill. Our interns will be a part of every facet of our CSA program, that includes seeding, harvesting, cleaning, packing boxes, and delivering. We will also have interns assisting at our farmers markets. The farm uses several tractors and implements, including transplanters, seeding drills, and sprayers (organic only) as well as the variety of tillage and cultivation equipment. We produce a variety of mushrooms for market, our own transplants in our spring greenhouse season and through the year, and use high tunnels for season extension. We partner with local orchards to offer a seasonal fruit share in our CSA, and local pastured meat and dairy producers for a-la-carte purchase of these products via the CSA delivery. We also have a workshare program with local CSA members, where folks trade 6 hours per week of work on the farm or at market for their produce share. There is a strong sense of community with these folks and their contribution to the productivity and spirit of the farm is invaluable. This is a wonderful hands-on learning opportunity!
Internship Starts: April 1, 2013
Internship Ends: Mid-November 2013
Number of Interns: 4
Application Deadline: January 2013
Minimum Length of Stay: Full Season is ideal, but we have had good experiences with, for example, college students working full-time in the summer.
Meals: Unlimited supply of seconds is available from the farm. Eggs, fruit and cheese are also provided on a weekly basis. Lunches can be brought or cooked as a group at the farm.
Work/Experience required: No previous experience is necessary, but a flexible attitude, sense of humor, good work ethic and an interest in constantly refining work technique. You must be physically capable to labor for over 10 hours a day in all types of weather conditions. Interns work 5 days a week and twice a month Saturday farmers market. Farm work is often repetitive, if meditative, and applicants need to have some confidence that they can keep up a reasonable pace until the job is done.
Educational Opportunities: Training and work experience include organic production practices for vegetables - as well as seedling propagation, the inter-workings of marketing, Work Share relations and periodic local farm tours.
Stipend: $600-800 per month
Housing Included: 3 bedroom apartment includes full kitchen, bath, laundry, and living space. All utilities are provided. Located in the historical downtown area of Carlisle, within walking distance to countless restaurants, cafes, bars, libraries and college facilities. 10 minute drive from the farm and several public parks, hiking trails (Appalachian Trail) and swimming lakes.
Reminder to CSA Members... because of the unexpected hail damage to crops we have to take a 2 week pause in CSA deliveries...this means a pause in your CSA share as well as fruit, eggs, cheese, & meat.
New for 2012!! Earth Spring Farm will be offering monthly classes/workshops for CSA Members, Work Share Members, and the general public!!
We invite you to come spend a couple of hours on the farm each month learning about new topics and techniques. The tentative schedule can be found on our Education on the Farm page. Classes will include things like seeding and planting, ideas for cooking with produce from ESF, and pickling and canning.
Cost is $10 per person per class; Work Share Members are FREE. Classes will be held rain or shine. Pre-registration is encouraged, but not required. To register please send an email to email@example.com. If you have questions, please contact us! Hope to see you on the farm soon!
We had a pull-the-plastic-over-the-hoophouse party Thursday morning at 6:30, before the sun was up and before any wind or breeze could decide to challenge us! And what a party!... 8 of us including three kids between the ages of 2 and 10, lots of coffee, guys hanging from the rafters, and one darn big piece of plastic. Mission complete... our 1st of 2 hoop houses is ready to roll (the 2nd one is under construction and soon to be in business too).
Julie (top left), Sarah (top middle), Rod (top right), and Jim & Matthew (bottom left) helping pull the plastic over the hoophouse. Evan (bottom right) enjoying his breakfast as he watches us!
What is a hoop house, you ask? A hoophouse- also called a high tunnel- is an unheated greenhouse that can help farmers extend their growing season. There are doors at either end where tractors and other equipment can move in and out. Crops are grown right in the soil. Because of the protection from weather (e.g., frost, wind, heavy rainfall), the warmer temperatures (the enclosed plastic hoophouse acts as a greenhouse), and the added irrigation, plants can be grown earlier and later in the seasons. For example,in general, 4-5 week old tomato seedlings can be transplanted into the high tunnel 4-5 weeks earlier in the season than they could be transplanted into the fields.
For now the hoophouse is also serving as a second "holding area" for all of our seedlings since we are running out of room in our greenhouse! We have seeded over 600 trays of vegetables (over 60,000 plants!!) and the greenhouse is so alive and beautiful, and some are ready for planting! Check it out...
Earth Spring Farm would like to welcome Julie Henninger as our Farm Manager for the 2012 Season! Julie grew up in this area and has recently moved home... she has already been busy on the farm seeding and training Work Share members. We hope to create a space for her to teach some yoga classes on the farm this year... stay tuned! Read more about Julie here. Welcome, Julie:) Glad to have you on the crew!
#1- making soil mix #2- Seeds dumped into machine #3- shake seeds around #4- one seed per hole!
#5- seeds drop into tray #6- trays are labelled #7- trays stacked in mini-greenhouse #8- hand seeding parsley
Mike and Jamie have been busy in the greenhouse seeding broccoli, cabbage, kale, collards, lettuce, and some herbs and early flowers! Lots more seeding to be done in these next few weeks! Here's a brief idea of how it's done.... lots and lots of soil mix needs to be made (see photo #1)- we have our own recipe- and stockpiled. Seeding trays are lined on the floor and filled by the shovel full, and the soil is spread out so all the little cells of the seeding tray are filled. The trays are then brought to the seeding table and tapped a few times to settle the soil. Seeds are dumped into the seeding machine (photo #2), the vaccuum is turned on, the seeding machine is shaken to move seedlings around (photo #3) trying to get one seed per little hole (with the help of the vacuum that helping suck the seeds into those tiny holes! see photo #4), extra seeds fall to a separate area, the seeding machine gets flipped over onto the tray filled with soil (photo #5), and the vaccuum is turned off and... magically each of those little seeds falls right into each cell of the tray with soil! Then soil is dumped on top of the trays to top them off, the soil is leveled, and the tray is labelled (photo #6), watered, and stacked in our mini-greenhouse (i.e., a tent wrapped in plastic with a space heater- see photo #7) inside our big greenhouse! Once they germinate they get their own little space in the big greenhouse so they can grow big and strong. It's hard to believe just 2 years ago when we started we seeded each tray by hand (photo #8)--- while there is something therapeutic about that- and we still do it with some seeds depending on size from time to time- the seeding machine seeds at least 10 times as fast and is therefore much more efficient! This is just the beginning..more to come!....
Farmer Mike begs CSA members to follow Drop Point Procedures:)
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While we are going to allow our members the option to have cheese delivered weekly with their CSA box, members are only going to have the option to have meat delivered MONTHLY. Since meat will only be delivered monthly, we are providing a list of dates for these deliveries to make it easier for our members. Dates for meat deliveries will be:
June 22 (PA) and June 23 (DC)
July 20 (PA) and July 21 (DC)
August 17 (PA) and August 18 (DC)
September 14 (PA) and September 15 (DC)
October 12 (PA) and October 13 (DC)
Note that the most up-to-date info on what meat is available, what the prices are, when they can be ordered, and when they will be delivered will always be on our Order Meat page (the store is now "closed" but will be open the 1st week of June).