March 1, 2021
Dear Friends and Customers of Many Hands Organic Farm,
Jack and I have gotten excellent at packing cardboard into the shopping carts at Wholesome Farmers Market, but we need your help!
What a wonderful double treat of warm weather and lots of people this week. There were 5 of us on Monday, 9 of us on Wednesday and 5 on Friday. And did we get a lot of work accomplished. We cleaned out the garage in readiness for the NOFA bulk order delivery on March 9 – $28,000 of product for 71 folks all delivered, sorted and passed back out again in two weeks. Then we used up our latest supply of cardboard on the “back forty (the area behind the hoophouses), turned over 2 hoop houses – mostly from chickweed – and then replanted to spinach. And two other houses got more spinach, and two beds of kale transplants. Friday we started seeds for about 14, 000 onions and leeks. Spring is really on the way. I look forward to more melt and more fun putting sand bags back on tarps . . . . .. And it so enlivens me to be feeding lots of people again after a hard day of work. Welcome back Anthony, Maya, Ari, Natalia, Rachel and Parker!
Sign up for the 2021 CSA options
The CSA subscriptions are rolling in fast now – another sign of spring. Thanks to Maya who has been hyping CSA week on social media. Pretty soon Maya and Ari will be calling 2020 shareholders to encourage you to sign up. Be sure to take their calls! Sign up here – https://mhof.net/community-supported-agriculture/
Products available now at the farm
- Ground pork in 1 lb. packages – $10/lb.
- Pork stock – $7.50/quart
- Beef Stock made from Chase Hill Farm beef bones – $7.50/quart
- Eggs – $8/dozen
- Comfrey salve – $8/2 oz.
- Hemp salve – $10/2 oz.
- Garlic powder – $10/2 oz.
- Lavender soap – $6/5 oz. bar
- Peppermint soap – $6/5 oz. bar
- Dandelion tincture – $6/2 oz. bottle
- Yellow dock tincture – $6/2 oz. bottle
- Frozen applesauce – $6/quart
- Canned (jarred) tomatoes) – $6/1 quart
- NEW – Frozen Cabbage – $6/lb, in 2 lb packages
Make arrangements to pick up at the farm or we can ship some things to you. Call at 978-355-3853 or email Julie@mhof.net
Follow this sequence of turning over a hoop house from chickweed to spinach on Feb 22 and 24 on YouTube!
Biodiversity for a Livable Climate
Biodiversity for a Livable Climate is an organization that I have really appreciated over the years. Not only have they brought the most cutting edge, and often obscure speakers in to address issues of carbon sequestration through agriculture, but recently they have started a weekly series on cool and usually endangered species all over the world. Two weeks ago featured a couple of great videos of octopuses and last week they talked about the kiwi, the national bird of New Zealand. Here is the octopus link. You can sign up for their weekly emails if you like this kind of thing. Jack and I recently read a fascinating book about octopuses – “The Soul of an Octopus” by Sy Montgomery. I have always been fascinated by the animals that seem to only live in New Zealand and Australia. You can sign up for their weekly “Featured Creatures email here – https://bio4climate.org/?s=Featured+Creatures
Working Shareholder Opportunity
One of the essential constituencies of our workforce is working shareholders. For 4 hours of work during the 22 week CSA summer season, the 5 week fall CSA season, and throughout the winter if you desire (M, W, F mornings 8-noon), volunteers receive as barter one large share of produce during the CSA season. Come for breakfast at 6:30 and stay for lunch. It is a good opportunity for someone interested in learning the CSA process from a hands on perspective (there are some animal chores too), and to become a part of our farm community. Vacations and time off are encouraged. We are always looking for more working shareholders to help us with the very large CSA harvest, and working shareholders become beloved members of our staff.
Additionally, if you are interested in learning more about our broiler chickens, layer chickens, pigs, and turkeys we have recently added a Saturday and/or Sunday animal care working shareholder position. Work 1-2 hours from 8:00am – 10:00am on Saturday and/or Sunday in exchange for some delicious and nutritious organic vegetables and/or eggs. This position is great for someone that is unavailable during the week, or has a particular affinity for farm animals. Note that this position will require some heavy lifting (we need to move mobile bird houses with a dolly and some heft and haul around 50 lb. bags of feed). Position is available from early to mid-April through Thanksgiving.
Contact Julie at firstname.lastname@example.org or 978-355-2853(h) or 978-257-1192 (cell) for more
*reference to the fact that as explained by James White of Rutgers in his work on Rhizophagy, plant roots suck microbes up into their roots, strip them and then spit them back out again with orders to collect minerals that the roots need.
Weekly Staff Spotlight
Maya Egan started working at Many Hands Organic Farm because they wanted to start working outside and build on prior farming experience. Their experience has blossomed into a desire to farm long term. Maya says that they are “working at MHOF specifically because of the ability to learn so much and the educational space that is available.” The community aspect at MHOF aligns with Maya’s values as community is a primary motivator for them. They enjoy living, eating, and co-conspiring with other folks daily.
On the question if farming can save the world Maya says, “I think it is a yes and a no. If done right it could, but there are also many more ways that it could not save the world and do more harm. I think it is much harder to have it create positive change and takes much more positive effort and thought.” Maya sees farming as a way to apply and employ their social justice core principles and organizing skills. Additionally, after attending an herbalism school in the summer of 2020, Maya also hopes to incorporate medicinal plants into the approach to food and health at the farm. They are excited to collaborate with other farm staff members on this project!
Check out the latest photos from the farm on our Instagram!