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January 24, 2015
Sustainable Land Preservation
By Charis Lindrooth
Many of our long-time CSA members remember the Land Project, started five years ago. This began as a fund-raising drive, which helped towards the downpayment for 90 acres in the Lehigh Valley. Initially, a wide open field edged by young tree groves, this new farm needed infrastructure before we could depend on it for vegetable production. We planted a few acres of potatoes the first year and by July the plants were begging for water. We dug a well, but with no electric the potatoes were out of luck. I don’t even want to tell you how much that electric box cost, since our residence is not on the property, but we finally bit the bullet.
This past year we planted 25 acres on the “Land Project,” now nicknamed the “New Farm.” This step was huge and meant that we were’t trying to maintain two crews in two separate counties. Equipment shed, greenhouses, nursery, pack house with a walk-in cooler big enough for an elephant, two wells, a gravel drive. Now we are ready for the next step, a “gutter connect” greenhouse, allowing us to extend our season more reliable beyond and before the first and last frosts. Besides a house on the premises (farmers really should not commute to their farm) we harbor an additional dream for this Farm. That dream is the creation of an educational series for members, children and neighbors interested in sustainable living. I mentioned in the last post the plan to build an earthen oven as a community project. Around this we hope to create a space for Farm to Table dinners, educational classes, live music, and more. We would love your input about your interests. What learning or social opportunities would lure you to visit the farm?