Farm Apprenticeship Program in Virginia

Farm in FallApprenticeship Program at Seven Springs Farm in Floyd County, Virginia for 2015

Seven Springs Farm, is located in southwestern Virginia in the Blue Ridge Mountains. The farm is home to a 100 family Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) garden, and a retail organic farming & gardening supply products business. The farm is a beautiful property, nestled in a private setting, with rolling hills, lush pastures, orchards, 55 acres of forest and a 1-acre pond.

This apprenticeship program is designed to offer instruction in a wide variety of skills, in exchange for enthusiastic, hardworking help with the many chores that make a farm. The farmer is interested in someone who has some basic experience in gardening or related fields, including the use of basic gardening tools; someone who is physically fit, likes to work hard, wants to learn sustainable farming, and is a non-smoker.

Description of work The average workweek is 5 1/2 days per week, Monday through Saturday noon. The average is eight hours day, though weather and other needs may vary the schedule occasionally. The program is designed to give the applicant some experience into the workings of running an organic farm. Following is a list of some of the kinds of work you will do.

All aspects of organic vegetable production

Small tractor use

Organization & management of a CSA

Safe use of hand and power tools

Equipment maintenance and repairs

Building maintenance and repairs

Fence repair and installation

Firewood and tree pruning

Homesteading skills such as, food preserving

Landscape beautification; flower, shrub, and tree planting.

Working with beef cows

Haying

Irrigation system maintenance, repairs, and improvements

Compensation

The apprentice receives a stipend of $125.00 per week. Food that is produced on the farm is provided, as well as basic kitchen, bath and laundry supplies. There is a private camp like setting  with a cabin, an outdoor kitchen , and an outhouse. There is a small solar electric system that produces enough electricity for lights, water pump, and a boom box. Wired internet is available at the farm office.

To apply go to http://www.7springsfarm.com/content/ApprenticeApplication.pdf. Applications are due no later than March 1.

Contact the farm: Polly Hieser, 540-651-3226, pollyhieser@gmail.com

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