Monday, November 2, 2009

Adventures in Diversification.

Last season, all of the NR farmers grew the same veggies. This season, we opened up our seed store with the intention of giving our farmers more control over what they grow while still retaining the ability to source organic seed. The seed store was a great success. We bought seed in bulk, had an army of volunteers put the seed into packets and organize them in one of our containers. (did I ever say thanks??) A pictorial seed catalogue let farmers see what was available and dream up what their fields could look like. Farmers grew what they wanted and we saw some interesting new crops out in the fields and in the market.

Vermont Cranberry beans are a delicious sell bean that stays pink when you cook it! Fresh shell beans are such a treat; the amount of work that goes into growing, picking and shelling is ridiculous, but the taste is WORTH IT!

Pelagie grew beautiful decorative corn in an array of fall hues.

At the end of the season, we met with second year farmers individually to discuss paying for their seed. As part of the program, each year farmers will absorb more financial responsibility until they are able to cover all of their expenses. The picture above is Pay Lay writing a check for her seeds. To me, this was one of the most exciting moments of the season.

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