Sustainable Agriculture Internship Training alliance (SAITA)
of Southeastern Pennsylvania
2010

Maysie's Farm Conservation Center
15 St. Andrew's Lane
Glenmoore, PA 19343
(610) 458-8129

   

Purpose

This program is designed to give interns at organic farms in the southeastern Pennsylvania area the opportunity to increase their knowledge of sustainable agriculture principles, broaden their exposure to different farming practices and create a network of other interns and farmers with whom they can develop supportive relationships.

Program Description

From late April through September, interns gather for various educational workshops. Most of these Saturday and Sunday workshops are hosted by participating farms and include a farm tour, a demonstration of a specific farming practice and a discussion of relevant topics. In addition, there are scheduled Seminar workshops, some held at Camphill Kimberton. Each Seminar will feature lectures that focus on a particular farming topic. Unless otherwise noted, the hours for workshops are normally 11am-1pm. Some will offer a catered lunch.

Program Administration

This program is administered by Maysie's Farm Conservation Center, as the purpose of this internship training alliance falls within the goals of the outreach programs there. Administration includes producing the annual program and schedule, communicating with participating farms, and compiling intern and farmer feedback. All participating farms are invited to contribute to the further development of this program through formal and informal meetings, surveys and regular phone or email communications.

Attending SAITA Workshops

Although the program is geared toward intern education, anyone interested is welcome to attend and can obtain information from the SAITA Program Coordinator at MFCC. Changing this year, there will be a small fee charged to attend SAITA programs ($10 for the general public; free for farm interns/apprentices). The Shane LaBrake workshops are $20 each with a catered lunch. Mike McGrath's workshop on June 10th will be $15, free for farm interns/apprentices.

We ask that you contact Alison and the host farm prior to attending a workshop so that the farm knows how many people to expect. Contact information for the host farms is listed in a directory in this packet.

Workshop Content

Each farm workshop includes an introductory presentation and a tour of the farm, a demonstration of a specific farming practice and a discussion of relevant topics. The farmers provide background information about themselves, the history of their farm and a physical description of their farm property. They share information with the interns about their farm operations, including growing techniques, types of equipment, sources of labor, marketing strategies and farm finances. Each farmer uses his or her unique talents to present the information to the interns in a meaningful way.

Most seminar workshops will be held either at the host farm or in the basement of Serena Hall at Camphill Kimberton (for directions, go to www.camphillkimberton.org. Serena Hall is located across from the café). Each Seminar features one or two speakers who will lecture on the monthly topic. There will be time for questions and discussion. Seminars at other locations will be noted on the season schedule.

Apprenticeship Programs

Northamerican Biodynamic Apprenticeship Program

Farms Hosting Workshops

Calvert Farm

Calvert Farm is located in Cecil County, Maryland close to the borders of Pennsylvania and Delaware. We are a small farm, certified Organic by the Maryland Department of Agriculture. In the summer we offer 20 weeks of farm fresh produce — a CSA. We offer you a box of fresh vegetables at nine locations beginning the week of May 17th through the week of September 27th. Be assured of the freshest produce for your home. You may order more than one box of produce. In the Fall we offer an extension to the summer subscription, starting the fall subscription when the summer one ends (October 5th until November 24th). Fall produce will probably include Broccoli, Cauliflower, Salad Mix, Cabbage, Spinach and Sweet Potatoes and other great veggies.

Charlestown Cooperative Farm

Charlestown Farm is part of the Charlestown Farm Center, a 150-acre sustainable farming project in suburban Philadelphia. The Farm provides non-certified, organically grown vegetables and fruits to a 150-member CSA and local restaurant, wholesales to the local health food store, and participates in a weekly farmers' market from mid-May through November. We have 9 acres in vegetable cultivation and another 9 in cover crop and sweet corn cultivation. We grow year-round in our 30' x 120' state-of-the-art hoophouse, which is heated with a corn burning furnace. A PaDEP Energy Harvest Grant funded the hoophouse and two recently installed tracking solar panels that generate "green energy" for sale back to the grid. The working dynamic of the Farm is a collaboration of efforts between the Andersen family, Sarah Rider (farm manager), Andrea Grom (assistant manager) and three full-time seasonal apprentices. The Farm is across the street from Broadwater Farm, a pastured livestock operation under development, which is also part of the Charlestown Farm Center. The Farm is committed to educating members, the surrounding community and school groups about sustainable agriculture through field days, demonstrations, tours, cooking classes, monthly newsletters, environmental movie nights and potlucks.

Fernbrook Farm CSA

Fernbrook Farm CSA is located on the grounds of Fernbrooks Farms in Bordentown, NJ. Fernbrook Farms has been in the Kuser family for three generations. The family-owned farm blends agriculture, horticulture, education and community. Besides the CSA, you will also find Fernbrook Nursery, Inc. (a wholesale nursery growing shade and flowering trees, conifers, native deciduous azaleas, and general nursery stock); The Inn at Fernbrook (an historic Bed and Breakfast available for weddings, special events and overnight accommodations); and Fernbrook Farms Education Center (offering summer farm camp, homeschool programs and year-round educational activities for children and adults).

Greensgrow Farm

Mary Seton Corboy founded Greensgrow in 1997 on the site of a former galvanized steel plant in the Kensington section of Philadelphia. Today visitors to the farm are greeted by expansive raised beds of organic soil filled with an ever changing range of heirloom vegetables, a well stocked Farm Stand, our own version of a CSA (City Supported agriculture) and a Nursery that grows and nurtures the highest quality and greatest variety of plants in the City. As the premier urban agriculture project in the country, we have been recognized nationally (PBS's Edens Lost and Found, Real Momentum, Organic Style Magazine, Growing For Market) and locally (Philadelphia Inquirer, The Daily News, Philadelphia Magazine, In Style Magazine) as "original," "innovative," "purposeful" and "successful." What was at one time a trash-strewn brownfield is now a vibrant, active center of the community where entrepreneurship and sustainability thrive.

Happy Cat Organics

Togetheramy and Tim have over twenty-five years of horticultural expertise in design sales propagation restoration seed saving foraging and organic farming. They met at Delaware Valley College while both where getting degrees in Environmental Design. They are organic growers of high quality, open pollinated and heirloom seeds and seedlings. A market grower of produce, medicinal, culinary herbs Fruits and Nursery stock.

In My Back Yard at Misty Hollow

Jim (a carpenter, teacher and grower) and Sally (an artist, teacher and nurse) Hammerman have made it their mission to grow, gather and explore nature's bounty for food, flavor and health. They started a small working-member CSA in 2007 and also host hands-on workshops monthly from March through November. Through their farm, they want to help people of all ages understand the reciprocal relationship of human and earth health.

Kimberton CSA

In 2002, Birgit and Erik Landowne took over the leadership of the Kimberton CSA from Kerry and Barbara Sullivan who started and ran the CSA since 1987. On ten acres they produce an abundance of high quality biodynamic food for the CSA's 200 member households during the 28-week harvest. Birgit and Erik grow most of their crops on raised beds, but they have also been experimenting with planting directly into rolled-down cover crops. Seedlings are raised in a heated greenhouse and high tunnels are used to extend the season and improve production of some crops. Cover crops and compost are used to maintain soil fertility; while irrigation, both overhead and drip, helps to ensure a good harvest even in the driest years. Interns work at the Kimberton CSA from April through November.

Maysie's Farm Conservation Center

Maysie's Farm Conservation Center is a nonprofit educational organization founded by Sam Cantrell and dedicated to the purpose of increasing public understanding of the importance of conservation and ecological thinking. Maysie's Farm works with individuals, families, communities and educational institutions to encourage ecological living by demonstrating and advocating organic agriculture and Community Supported Agriculture. Located in Glenmoore, PA, Maysie's Farm is a small farm educational center where sustainable agriculture interns work and learn year round. Of the farm's sixty-four acres, seven are in beds which produce organic vegetables for the 170-member CSA, a private school lunch program, and a weekly farmers' market. Through the CSA and related educational programs, Maysie's Farm is developing a community that is based on a local food supply and a commitment to ecological living.

North Slope Farm

North Slope Farm is a 50 acre, diversified organic farm, located in central western New Jersey. Primary cash crops are vegetables, flowers and herbs grown on three acres. Other management responsibilities include hay, straw, pasture, fruit, infrastructure, waterways, buffer zones, woodlands, wetlands and community involvement. We serve a variety of markets including our retail farm stand, off-site farmers markets, wholesale accounts and special projects. Primary tillage and cultivation is done with both tractors and hand tools. While we strive to improve the efficiency and mechanization of crop care, the production crew remains the most valuable aspect. To this end, we have created a Stewardship Guild to invest in providing opportunities for hands-on training.

Pennypack Farm

Pennypack Farm was started as an organic CSA in 2003 by a community group who wanted access to locally grown organic vegetables. No existing farmers nearby wanted to adopt the many new practices that an organic CSA would require, so our group leased land from another non-profit, and hired four farm staff to begin to return fertility to the soil while growing shares of vegetables, flowers, and herbs to local families. Being a 501(c)(3) educational organization was essential to raising funds needed for the start-up capital for equipment and buildings. We have grown from offering 80 shares in 2003 to now over 300 families. Two years ago we added "free-range" chicken layers and broilers to the food we raise. Educational programs include 1,000 kids from a nearby summer camp, an intern program, a monthly speakers' series, workshops about organic gardening and food preparation and preservation, school field trips, corporate volunteer days, and more. We learned many hard lessons that prepare us to consult with other groups on best ways to get a farm started. Some of us would like to see a farm established every 5 miles in suburbia.

Pleasant Pastures Organic Acres

Benuel and Anna Stoltzfus farm 69 acres in Honey Brook, Chester County, next door to where Ben grew up. Beingamish, they do this without electricity and motorized vehicles, but with the help of their nine children (ages 5-23), five of whom work fulltime on the farm. Most of the farm is in pasture for their chickens, pigs, turkeys, and dairy and beef cattle, although they also grow vegetables for the family and fruit for use in their products. The farm has been certified organic since 2000. They sell a wide range of raw milk dairy products, all direct marketed through CARE (Citizen's Alliance for Responsible Ecofarming) to places as far away as New York and Virginia.

Quiet Creek Farm CSA

John and Aimee Good are owners and operators of Quiet Creek Farm CSA located on land leased from the Rodale Institute in Kutztown, PA. The Goods manage a Community Supported Agriculture model farm serving a membership of 200 households, growing over fifty different vegetable crops on 8 acres of certified organic farmland. Members pick up their produce at the farm where they have access to the farm's Upick garden. Quiet Creek Farm features a "Real Foods" marketplace which offers locally raised farm products, such as natural and grassfed meats, cheeses, eggs, honey, etc., for sale to members of the CSA community. Quiet Creek Farm has been in operation since 2006. John and Aimee Good previously managed Charlestown Cooperative Farm for 4 years, and apprenticed for 2 years in the CRAFT program in New England. They are both originally from Emmaus, PA.

Sankanac Farm CSA

Located in Kimberton, the Sankanac Farm CSA is a 15-acre biodynamic farm that is an integral component of the Camphill Kimberton Hills community for adults with mental disabilities. Camphill Village is located on 420 acres that includes a dairy that produces raw biodynamic milk and an orchard with apples, peaches, pears, a vineyard and more. The Sankanac CSA is a 200-member CSA that has incorporated a significant livestock component into its operation.

Shellbark Hollow Farm

Shellbark Hollow Farm is located in West Chester, PA and makes award winning artisan goat cheeses, cheese spreads, yogurt and kefir from their purebred Nubian goats. Everything is hand-made on site, packaged and delivered fresh to local markets, restaurants, vineyards and specialty shops.

Spoutwood Farm

Rob and Lucy Wood manage a 26-acre farm 35 miles north of Baltimore, Maryland and 15 miles south of York, Pennsylvania. Since 1996, Spoutwood has had on their front field a more than two-acre organic CSA garden that had been fallow for the preceding ten years. The CSA is one of a number of efforts in the farm's mission of reconnecting people and nature. Spoutwood's dried flower business has been bringing nature's bounty to craft and gift shows for over ten years. Spoutwood celebrates the spirit of nature with its May Day Fairie Festival (May 2-4, 2008) and the Mother Earth Harvest Fair (October 5, 2008). Spoutwood has been incorporated as a nonprofit educational center emphasizing the need for people to live in greater harmony with nature.

Stargazers Vineyard

Stargazers Vineyard and Winery are owned and operated by Alice and John Weygandt. The Vineyard was first planted in 1979; the winery was established in 1996. The Vineyard comprises 20,000 plus vinfera vines which yield over 45 tons per vintage. It is located just north of Unionville, in Chester County, in southeastern Pennsylvania. As in the European model of wine growing, the grapes are grown and made into wine by the owners at the Vineyard. Brian and Jennifer Dickerson are the new vineyard General Managers, who will carry on John and Alice's sustainable farm philosophies and traditions.

Two Gander Farm

Two Gander Farm specializes in honey production and raising high quality honeybee colonies and local (northern) queen bees. Their products are marketed through wholesale outlets, CSA farms, farmers' markets, and an internet store in partnership with Swarmbustin Honey. Two Gander Farm also farms six acres of vegetables in rotation with a series of cover crops providing both fertility for the soil and nectar for the bees. The farmers participate in two farmers' markets as well as selling direct wholesale to farmstands and the kitchens of a few local colleges and universities.

Weavers Way Farm

Weavers Way Farm is located on 1.25 acres at the Awbury Arboretum in East Germantown, Philadelphia. The farm is both a market garden, selling to the Weavers Way Co-op and markets around the city, as well as an educational facility for area schools and groups. This truly community effort includes two full time staff, full season interns, and volunteers from co-op members to schoolchildren who all help create the farm's supply of fresh, organically grown produce. Weavers Way operates the farm with the aim of creating a sustainable urban farm business. The farm is also a destination for many local schools and groups to participate in a 1/4 acre children's garden. The Education program is also cultivating a small market garden at Martin Luther King High School, walking distance from the farm.

Willow Creek Orchards

Willow Creek Orchards is a certified organic, family farm located on 138 acres in central Montgomery County in Worcester Township, PA. Drew and Melissa Smith established an orchard in March 2003 consisting of apples, peaches, pears, cherries, plums and apricots as well as brambles, blueberries and strawberries. They also grow a wide array of vegetables, flowers and herbs. Most of the produce is sold on the farm through Pick-Your-Own or the retail farm market.

 

Year 2010 Schedule

Date

Day

Farm

Special Topics

April 16th, 2011
1 - 3pm

Saturday

Pennypack Farm & Education Center

Low Tunnels for Season Extension


IF YOU ARE PLANNING ON ATTENDING ONE OF THE WORKSHOPS:

1) CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THE WORKSHOP SIGN-UP FORM (downloadable PDF)

2) Print out this form and bring it to the workshop along with your payment, however, please also RSVP to Alison and the host farm at least one week before the workshop date.

Unless otherwise noted, all workshops begin at 11am and end at 1pm. Please contact Alison and the host farm if you plan to attend. For directions to the seminar workshops, go to www.camphillkimberton.org. Serena Hall is located across from the café.


SAITA HOST FARM DIRECTORY

Click here for a downloadable version of the directory (PDF).

 

Calvert Farm
321 Chrome Road
Rising Sun, MD 21911
(410) 658-3914
farmer@calvertfarm.com
Pam Stegall

Charlestown Cooperative Farm
2565 Charlestown Road
Phoenixville, PA 19460
(610) 917-0252
sarah@charlestownfarmcenter.org
Sarah Rider

Fernbrook Farm CSA
P.O. Box 228
Bordentown, NJ 08505
(609) 298-4028 (office)
(609) 298-4391 (fax)
info@fernbrookfarmcsa.com
Jeff Tober, Farm Manager

Greensgrow Farm
2501 E. Cumberland
Philadelphia, PA 19125
(215) 427-2780
Ryan Kuck, Lead Farmer

Happy Cat Organics
P.O. Box 632
Kennett Square, PA 19348
(267) 761-1909
tmountz@hotmail.com
Tim Mountz andamy Bloom

In My Back Yard at Misty Hollow
1020 East Street Road
Westtown, PA 19395
(610) 455-0981
mistyhollow_jim@mac.com
Jim and Sally Hammerman

Kimberton CSA
P.O. Box 192
Kimberton, PA 19442
(610) 933-8339
KimbertonCSA@hotmail.com
Birgit and Erik Landowne

Maysie's Farm Conservation Center
15 St. Andrew's Lane
Glenmoore, PA 19343
(610) 458-8129
Sam@maysiesfarm.org
Sam Cantrell

North Slope Farm
386 Rock Road East
Lambertville, NJ 08530
(609) 466-8330
MikeR@northslopefarm.com
Michael Rassweiler

Pennypack Farm
685 Mann Road
Horsham, PA 19044
(215) 646-3943
mulchgulch@hotmail.com
Fred Beddall, Andy Andrews

Pleasant Pastures Organic Acres
648 Cambridge Road
Honey Brook, PA 19344
(717) 768-3437
Ben Stoltzfus

Quiet Creek Farm at The Rodale Institute
611 Siegfriedale Rd.
Kutztown, 19530
(610) 285-4678
goodfarmers@ptd.net
John and Aimee Good

Sankanac Farm CSA at Camphill Kimberton Hills
P.O. Box 155
Kimberton, PA 19442
(610) 495-7295
tiobastiao@hotmail.com
Sebastian Kretschmer

Shellbark Hollow Farm
West Chester, PA
(610) 431-0786
shellbarkhollow@aol.com
Peter Demchur and Donna Demchur Levitsky

Spoutwood Farm
4255 Pierceville Rd
Glen Rock, PA 17327-7818
(717) 235-6610
spoutwood@comcast.net
Rob and Lucy Wood

Stargazers Vineyard
1024 Wheatland Drive
Unionville, PA
(610) 486-0422
stargazers1@verizon.net
John and Alice Weygandt or Brian Dickerson

Two Gander Farm
92 Covered Bridge Road
Oley, PA 19547 (Berks County)
(610) 987-0055
treyflemming@yahoo.com
Trey Flemming

Weaver's Way
559 Carpenter Lane
Philadelphia, PA 19119
(215) 843-2350
dsiller@yahoo.com
David Siller

Willow Creek Orchards
3220 Heebner Road
Collegeville, PA 19426
(610) 222-0975
drewsmith@willowcreekorchards.com
Drew and Melissa Smith

   

Guidelines for Farms Hosting a Workshop

Two weeks prior to the date of the workshop, send an email to the SAITA Coordinator that includes directions to your farm and some general information about your plans for the workshop. Alison will get the word out to the SAITA participating list.

People interested in attending your workshop will be instructed to contact you directly, either by phone or e-mail, so you'll know approximately how many people to expect.

Prepare workshop materials appropriate for your demonstration and topic (including surveys!). Have a "Plan B" ready if inclement weather is anticipated.

Give the interns a thorough tour of the farm property and buildings, explaining much of your background information along the way. Give the interns copies of your farm literature (CSA brochures, etc.). Please include the following information:

Demonstrate a farming practice and involve the interns in a hands-on manner as much as possible. Lead a discussion of topics related to your demonstration. Share any materials you have on your topic.

Provide a place for the interns to have a potluck lunch where they can socialize.

Sample Forms

Sustainable Agriculture Internship Training Alliance of Southeastern PA Farm Workshop Evaluation (downloadable PDF)

Sustainable Agriculture Internship Training Alliance of Southeastern PA Intern Farm Visit Worksheet (downloadable PDF)