Just received our greenhorns badges and kerchief (and about 100 stickers also)… yeah! The world needs more stickers championing us to fix nitrogen…
Aren’t they great? Perfect for, well, everything from my notebook to my 3 year old’s drink bottle, I rekon. Can’t wait to spread these all around our farm and friends…
The Greenhorns book is slowly creeping around the farm from hand to hand, and the cause for many conversations. The biggest ones are currently: what are the biggest barriers to entry to young and beginner farmers in Australia? Why don’t we have more young-uns taking on small-farm growing? How do we help make this be more normal? How do we help train more beginner farmers, facilitate inter-regional apprenticeships/internships, etc etc etc? What are the best workarounds for land access?
There’s so many differences between Australia and the USA where the greenhorns movement is taking hold – population base, proximity of farmland to cities, ancestral agrarian mythologies, soils, governmental attitudes, societal attitudes, cultural norms and all the rest. But if we want local, clean, resilient food economies in this country, something’s gotta give… and we gotta get going.
I’m off to plant bare rooted apple trees in the winter rain. In my new kerchief.
Kirsten – they are pretty awesome at building the swell and interest across the states. Groups like the National Young Farmers Coalition and sites like Farm Hack all things that would be great here. We are gearing up to start our full-time CSA near the end of this year. We held a trial earlier this year to feed 20 families to try and work out what worked for us and what worked for the families – as CSA just seems a little unknown here. All went well and excited to get started full time. You can see where we are… Read more »
Well done, I had such a joj planting my first apple tree few monts ago and seeing blossoming and producing real apples was amazing.
From midway up Saddleback Mountain in New Hampshire and one if its many small farms, to you small-farm farmers in Australia, I say, you will. You will get going. Actually, it sounds like you’re already moving. carry on, guys
Kirsten, I just saw your art and geruistic sculptural installation. You are a great artist and real talent and inspiration.
There is hope, we have just bought 11 acres to turn into a small holding, and plant and grow as much as we can. Though finding people to talk to and help is very slim here in Australia. I recently also bought the book greenhorns.
I should clarify that it’s not that i don’t think there’s anyone doing organic small diverse farm enterprise in AU, of course there are thousands if not more… it’s the networking factor, the peer support and the internship/apprenticeship schemes that I’m talking about…
I am with you Kirsten, I would love more networking options for beginners and existing farmers. I am currently looking at doing some woofing in the area as a cheap alternative
I so wish I was part of this discussion you are having on the farm, Kirsten!
I have been reading as many online aspiring-farmer resources as I can lay my hands on, but they are all US-based (also just picked up the Greenhorns book on your recommendation – great!). I often wonder what differences there are between the USA and Australia, specifically with regards those which you mentioned above.
Any way that we can take this online? Maybe you could do a post summarising some of the things that you have been discussing at Milkwood?
Hi Kirsten, I think population is a big reason. And, as you point out, having farms close to population centres, as they do in the US, means more support for CSAs which in turn provide internships and apprenticeships for city dwellers thinking about the move. However… I think it’s a matter of getting off our bums and organising. I’m a little bit behind you as I’m not across the US models (Greenhorn book on its way) but will keep an eye on this thread. We live in a densely populated rural community so there is a lot of opportunity for… Read more »
We’re getting there. This is an exciting time to be an Australian. Having a smallish population has advantages. Overpopulation isn’t a problem and if land stewards like you folks keep putting smart ideas and elbow grease together, there’s no reason why regional Australia can’t lead the way into a beautiful future. You’ve asked the crucial questions: “what are the biggest barriers to entry to young and beginner farmers in Australia? Why don’t we have more young-uns taking on small-farm growing? How do we help make this be more normal? How do we help train more beginner farmers, facilitate inter-regional apprenticeships/internships,… Read more »
Wow oath based agriculture… just imagine 🙂