July days are full and long, and there are always things on the to-do list that don’t get crossed off. That being said; I do feel like we are gaining ground and getting a lot accomplished lately. Part of the reason is that Rebecca has been working full time on the farm for a little over a month now. The other part of the equation is recent help from two youth in the Farmcorps program. Farmcorps is a summer program that partners up farms that can use some help with high school students that can use some job experience. The youth are paid for their work through a grant written by the Green Mountain Farm to School Program. They work two days a week on farms for around 7 hours a day, and two other days of the week they receive agricultural related trainings, work on school garden projects, and have a booth at the Newport Farmer’s market.
Brittany and Dakota have been working at Peace of Earth for two weeks now and have tackled a variety of pleasant and not so pleasant tasks from weeding to mulching, loading compost, picking raspberries and garlic scapes, raking hay, planting, and picking slugs for the ducks. It has been great to have some extra hands for all of these tasks. One day while weeding a particularly thickly grassed and nasty section of the garden there was a good deal of exasperation being expressed about the futility of it all. Brittany posed the question, “Wouldn’t it be easier to just weed whack or plow or rototill this all?’’ The short answer to that question is- yes. The longer answer about why we prefer to do things the slow way with our hands and organic matter, and active soil organisms will take longer to tell, and experience. My hope is that this summer they will not only learn something but also spark an inkling of interest and enthusiasm for farming and a respect for what growing food entails.