Phase II of the Walter F. Ballinger Educational Community Farm!

February 15th, 2017

Help Us Enhance the Front of the Farm & Cultivate the Back 6!

In spring of 2016, the Nantucket Islands Land Bank awarded Sustainable Nantucket an additional 6.5 acres at the back of the Walter F. Ballinger Educational Community Farm kicking off Phase II of the Community Farm! This acreage will be organically and sustainably farmed by our Beginning Farmers who have graduated to our Seasoned Farmers program! To provide our Beginning & Seasoned Farmers the best tools for success, in addition to the Back 6 project, we are enhancing the existing infrastructure of the Front of the Farm!

Front of the Farm Enhancement Infrastructure Includes:

  • Solar Wrap for our Propagation Greenhouse (sponsored)
  • A Solar-Heated, Hot Water Wash Station (sponsored)
  • An Eco-Friendly Outhouse (sponsored)
  • A Fruit Tree Garden (sponsored)
  • Outdoor Kitchen
    • The Outdoor Kitchen will be a place to teach cooking and preserving the harvest
    • The Outdoor Kitchen will include a stove, sink and refrigeration.
  • Mobile Farm Stand

    • The Mobile Farm Stand will be stationed in front of the farm and will be stocked with produce from our Beginning and Seasoned Farmers.
  • Outdoor Classroom
    • The Outdoor Classroom will be a space for workshops and classes, lectures and films.
    • The Outdoor Classroom will include:
      • A shade structure
      • Screen
      • Seating and a lectern
      • Tables and work-space for hands-on classes

Back 6 Seasoned Farm Acreage Infrastructure Includes:

  • Fencing
  • Water
  • Electricity
  • 6 1/2-acre Seasoned Farmer Plots
    • Plots will be allotted to graduates of the incubator farm’s Beginning Farmer program.
    • We anticipate our first Beginning Farmer graduate to be cultivating in the Back 6 in summer 2017!
    • As each graduate moves onto the Seasoned Farm Acreage, we will accept new participants into the beginning farmer program, thereby exponentially increasing the number of farmers growing food on the island, every 3 to 5 years.
  • Bee Sanctuary
    • The Bee Sanctuary will:
      • Provide a home for bees on the farm
      • Provide a place for knowledgeable island beekeepers to keep their hives and provide hands-on beekeeping education
      • Help in the effort to preserve and support our bee populations, while the bees provide honey and enhance the pollination of our community farm crops.
  • Food Forest (sponsored)
    • The Food Forest will be planted and cultivated at the edges of the Back 6.
    • The Food Forest will:
      • Support biodiversity
      • Create habitat for wildlife & insects including pollinators
      • Build healthy soil
      • Provide a perennial buffer zone protecting sensitive areas
      • Provides fruit, nuts, and herbs for foraging and gleaning


To learn more about how to contribute to the campaign to grow the Walter F. Ballinger Educational Community Farm: Email:
Call the Sustainable Nantucket Office at: (508) 228-3399

Successful Small Farmer Workshops February 4!

January 18th, 2017


Join Us For Two Special Farm & Food Presentations!

December 8th, 2016


Master Farmer Visits Nantucket November 12 ~ Don’t Miss This!

November 1st, 2016

Annie Farrell poster

Mushroom Growing Workshop October 16 at The Farm!

September 9th, 2016


Postponed from September 25… Now part of the NantucketGrown Food Festival!

Join mushroom-growing specialist Alden Lenhart in a hands-on workshop on How to install a Wine Cap Mushroom Bed in your yard or garden!

Sunday, October 16,1:00 – 3:00

Rain or shine (talk will be inside greenhouse if raining; wear appropriate work clothing for installation outdoors).

Alden will also talk about mushrooms, their role in nature and different methods of growing them.

At the Community Farm Institute
168 Hummock Pond Road

Free, and Open to the Public

Click HERE for more info on the Food Festival

Veggies! What’s In At The Market!

August 16th, 2016

Selection of different yellow zucchini from Boatyard Farm at last week’s Market.

Harvest of the Month!

Long, short, round, knobby, zucchini squashes come in so many different shapes. And colors! Green, white, yellow, striped! The harvest is in!

Harvest of the Month RECIPE

Baked Zucchini Fries


1 cup Panko breadcrumbs

1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

1 teaspoon Italian seasoning

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

4 zucchini, quartered lengthwise

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

2 large eggs, beaten

2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves


Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Coat a cooling rack with nonstick spray and place on a baking sheet; set aside. In a large bowl, combine Panko, Parmesan and Italian seasoning; season with salt and pepper, to taste. Set aside. Working in batches, dredge zucchini in flour, dip into eggs, then dredge in Panko mixture, pressing to coat. Place zucchini onto prepared baking sheet. Place into oven and bake for 20-22 minutes, or until golden brown and crisp. Serve immediately, garnished with parsley, if desired.



Farm News!

August 2nd, 2016

IMG_5546On Friday, Sustainable Nantucket hosted its 7th Annual Farm Fresh Feast the Community Farm Institute. Featured were a silent and a live auction, music from local band Buckle and Shake, and dinner catered by Taste of Nantucket, with produce donated by local farms and harvesters. Thanks to all the farmers, volunteers, and staff who helped make this event a success!

Harvest of the Month ~ July Greens!

July 5th, 2016

July GreensJuly is Greens Month!

Find fresh, island-grown greens at the Saturday Downtown & the Wednesday Mid-Island Markets!

Also at participating NantucketGrown restaurants featuring Harvest of the Month!

Try this delicious recipe!

Lemon-Garlic Swiss Chard


1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon minced garlic
12 cups Swiss chard, chopped (about 10 ounces)
2 tablespoons water
1 1/2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
4 teaspoons shaved fresh Parmesan cheese


Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add garlic; sauté 2 minutes or until garlic begins to brown. Add Swiss chard and 2 tablespoons water to pan; cook 3 minutes or until chard wilts. Stir in lemon juice and pepper. Sprinkle with cheese.

Community Farm Institute News!

June 29th, 2016

group searching for insect pestsThanks so much to Andrew Spollett for leading local growers in an Organic Pest and Disease Management workshop this past Sunday! The workshop addressed some of the CFI farmers’ specific pest problems and discussed pests common to the area, along with covering various sustainable methods to keep pests at bay.




IMG_5391The Community Farm has furthered its green development with solar panels! A big thanks to Zach Dusseau for installing them!


It’s Massachusetts Pollinator Week!

June 23rd, 2016


Governor Baker has declared June 20th-26th, 2016 as Massachusetts Pollinator Week, presenting an opportunity to celebrate and protect our pollinator populations and SN currently has 2 pollinator projects! So what exactly is a pollinator?

Pollinators are the creatures that transfer pollen from male anthers of a flower, to female stigma of a flower. This is a vital process that allows for the plants to reproduce and produce fruit. Examples of pollinators include bees, butterflies, moths, wasps, beetles, bats, and hummingbirds. Declining populations of pollinators threaten a farmer’s ability to produce crops. The flowering plants and trees in this garden attract pollinators and provide a healthy environment for them to thrive.

CFI Pollinator Garden
We are so excited to have our pollinator garden in the ground this week! The garden includes plants such as Yarrow, Iron Weed, Pye Weed, Milkweed, and other pollinator pleasers. Soon there will also be blueberries available for visitors to pick while they learn about native plants and pollinator species. This garden is an important for ensuring the health of pollinators, the health of the local environment, and health of crops grown by the farmers at the Community Farm Institute.

Farm to School Pollinator Garden
The F2S Pollinator Garden was designed by the NHS landscape vocational program utilizing a mixture of native plants detailed by the Nantucket Biodiversity Initiative. This allows us to attract a higher percentage of native pollinators while also limiting the need for fertilizers or water.