I’m a Farmer

I’m a city girl, raised in Brooklyn, NY. About 17 years ago I moved up to Canada and “got stuck”. I love the INDOORS and would not describe myself as a nature girl.

I’m also a wishful vegan. That is, I wish I were vegan, my animal loving heart wishes I were vegan. Unfortunately, I have a meat addiction I just can’t shake!  I am raising two vegetarian children though, so I’m hoping that at least the next generation will be more likely to become vegan!

There may still be hope for me yet – in an effort to become healthier, I decided in the Spring to join a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) and get fresh organic veggies delivered to my door. That is until I saw the cost!  The initial outlay ($400 for 8 weeks) was beyond our means. 

But then I found Theresa at “Garden Party“. She was offering the opportunity to complete a workshare in exchange for fresh, organic veggies!  I immediately sent an email and was very happy to get in to the Spring session!

Each week I committed to work 4 hours (shift started at 8:30am mid-week) and in exchange I received two big bags of fresh organic veggies, herbs and fruit every 2 weeks. I ‘earned’ approximately $10/hr in food.

The work varied. I hoed, weeded, put organic friendly plastic sheeting down (to prevent weeds and keep moisture in the soil), hauled bricks, turned ornamental grasses into hay, put out mulch and cardboard to protect the soil and inhibit weeds, trimmed raspberry canes and strung them up on supports, and when it rained, I painted indoors. No planting, no harvesting.

A list went out every 2 weeks so I could select food for the pick-up. Early in the workshare (in May), there were canned items available in addition to many root vegetables stored over the Winter. By the end of the workshare (in June) there were many fresh greens to choose from and I loved getting lots of asparagus!

I always left physically exhausted, but spiritually renewed. It was such a gift to help out on the farm and enjoy the sights, smells and sounds. The birds, bugs and frogs serenaded us. The sun kept the mosquitoes at bay (although I donated plenty of blood). It was a wonderful experience! I’m happy to be returning again in the Fall – when I can look forward to the bounty of the harvest.

Check out my “I’m a Farmer” Flickr Album to see more!

For more information about this workshare, visit Garden Party.
For information about CSA’s in Ontario visit the Ontario CSA Directory.