What a Difference a Week Makes!
Just a week ago a tour of the organic growing beds at the student farm left us feeling cold, soggy and wet with the fields covered with the remnants of our first snow storm of 2016.
Monday, the snow was gone, the fields drier and all of the overwintered plants looked much perkier as we surveyed the farm in our short sleeves basking in 70 degrees of warmth, sunshine and blue skies. The carrots and spinach in the hoop house have recovered nicely from the recent cold snaps and our fields overwintering under cover crops of rye and vetch look lush, green and ready for the coming Spring.
Even though it is officially still Winter – Spring preparations are in high gear. The greenhouse is full of seedlings from seed sown over the last several weeks that will become some of the first crops harvested from the farm in early Spring. Hoop House South has been moved to a new weed free footprint for 2016 and will soon be covered in new plastic by the Greenhouse Design Class. Our first direct seed planting in the field was completed on Monday… a bed of Sugar Snap Peas!
Growing Farmers on the Student Farm
The farm‘s days are filled with students and instructors from the Community College… The Sustainable Livestock Production Class working with heritage breed chickens; Organic Crop Production classes sowing seeds to germinate in the solar greenhouse. Students tending overwintered crops in Hoop House North, and preparing beds in the field for Spring 2016 planting activities… all working together, gently guided by experienced and caring instructors; learning sustainable agriculture from the soil up.
If you look closely, and have the chance to observe across the months, as the seasons go by you can see there is something else going on. If you look beyond the muddy boots and overalls, you can see there is serious learning, growth and development going on. There are new farmers forming their plans, sprouting, growing and developing on the Student Farm at CCCC. Figuring it out, having fun doing it together, all on a mission to carry sustainable agriculture practices forward in our surrounding communities enriching and adding strength to our local economies along the way.
It is a busy and great time on the student farm as both the learning and growing shifts into high gear for the soon to arrive Spring Season! Here we Grow!