In the beginning…
By: Kaitlyn Elias on July 14, 2010
Since the last week in May, Common Roots interns, Mollie Silver & I (Kaitlyn Elias) have been planting a variety of vegetables that will be sold at a fair-market value to the three elementary schools in South Burlington. These include: Orchard, Central, and Chamberlin elementary schools. The money that Common Roots raises from these vegetable sales will be utilized in funding Farm-to-School Coordination positions at the schools. Additionally, part of the harvest will be processed and stored for use in elementary school lunches this fall!
Mollie and I have tag teamed our efforts with our Farm Coordinator Greg Soll in the seeding, transplanting, and maintenance of the plants. Currently our crops include: pumpkins, winter squash and cucumbers at Bread and Butter Farm, and kale, bush beans, zucchini, and basil at The Farm at South Village. Beets, leeks, broccoli, and carrots will be added to The Farm at South Village soon.
We have designed our fields to be beneficial for students to move freely throughout the space. This means that they are a touch wider than usual. Some prospective student/farm engagements we foresee allow students to help with the growing process, maintenance, and harvesting.
Community support for our cause has been amazing! The Bread and Butter Farm crew has graciously allowed us to use one acre for cultivation. Eric Weil (from Bread and Butter Farm) has even taken initiative to water our seedlings when we aren’t present.
This past week, fifteen community members joined us for the beginning of our sheep manure spreading at Bread and Butter Farm. These volunteers graciously spent 2 mornings hauling and spreading the donated manure. This will be used to enhance the fertility of the soil. These brave souls faced ninety-degree temperatures of last weeks heat wave.
At Farm at South Village we currently are cultivating ½ an acre. Folks there have also been adamant about making sure that our soil has been properly maintained. Dave Miskell and Bobby Young have both been great help by offering guidance and time from their busy schedules.
We look forward to continue hard work and involving more community members. Feel free to contact any of us if you have interest or ideas. Our doors and minds are open!