I'm officially a farmer starting May 10 (one week...) I'll clean my apartment, pack up all the weird things in my room, and set off to my hometown of Scottsboro, a small farming community just north of Nashville, TN. I'll be living Sulphur Creek Farm, one of three farms that comprise the Bells Bend Neighborhood Farm CSA. I'll be working close with 30+ year biodynamic farmer Jeff Poppen, the Barefoot Farmer, soaking up as much of his experience as I can. Despite being a bit rusty on the tractor and the occasional "what the hell am I getting into?", I think I'm fairly ready now.
Since my last post:
- learned a ton about shiitake mushroom production: inoculated over 50 white oak logs with shiitake spawn, took them to nashville, got big plans.
- learned a ton about starting from seeds, tomato varieties especially: started over 150 healthy tomatoes--golden jubilee, big boy, juliet, homestead, and pink girl. Babied them, potted them up last week, look great and are doing very well (clearly a proud parent). I'll put them in with 50 more (200 total for CSA) next week, assuming the biblical flood is confronted by some sun.
- went to the Organic Growers School in Asheville, NC. Learned a lot about a lot of things--met great people from great farms.
- been to Nashville every other weekend to work. a lot. I'm technically the Sulphur Creek Farm Coordinator--i think. Trying to get as many volunteers as possible. Registered our farm to be WWOOF hosts four days ago. Have had 5 volunteers requesting stays so far...
- Am also working at the ASU Sustainable Development Farm to learn as much as I can from expert Marc Williams. Am also working on Ripshin Goat Dairy, keepers of incredibly happy goats and makers of incredibly good goat cheese. Much to my liking, I work the kitchen/herb gardens, and with my good friend John at that.
- Presented my senior thesis last Friday: How Anthropology Can Lead the Transition to a Sustainable Food System. Mic and podium...in front of whole department. Nailed it. Somehow defended all questions and critiques. It's like this hasn't been my life for four years...
- Sick. Probably Swine Flu.
- Three more papers/projects and I graduate! FOREVER!