Posts Tagged ‘organic practices’

Fun for All at Discover Your Garden/Family Picnic Day at the Joyce N. Furman FARM TO SCHOOL Youth Garden

Friday, October 14th, 2011
Monday, October 10th marked Sustainable Nantucket’s first Discover Your Garden and Family Picnic Day at the Joyce N. Furman FARM TO SCHOOL Youth Garden. Over 75 people were in attendance, with Fire Chief Bill Pittman, Town Manager Libby Gibson, Nantucket Garden Club President Paulette Boling, and NPS Food Services Director Linda Peterson among them. Attendees came to participate in SN’s annual meeting; a ribbon cutting for the Joyce N. Furman FARM TO SCHOOL Youth Garden; and Family Picnic Day. (more…)

About SN’s Land Use Partnership Initiative

Thursday, September 15th, 2011

Photo by Dylan Wallace

It’s hard to imagine now, but according to this map on the Nantucket Historical Association’s web site, there were over 100 farms on Nantucket in the 1850’s. In 2007, when SN started our Farmers & Artisans Market, Nantucket had 3 farms (one of which was NCF’s Cranberry B0gs) and a handful of small scale growers operating commercially. Today, in 2011, there are 7 farms plus several small-scale growers that are commercially growing and harvesting food (produce, eggs, meat, honey, shellfish) for sale to Nantucket consumers.

It’s no surprise to anyone that the cost of land on the Island makes commercial farming prohibitive for most. Nantucket farmers are additionally burdened with higher operational costs than most off-island farmers – fuel, equipment, supplies and materials, not to mention labor and overhead, are generally more expensive on Nantucket. Yet as a community we understand the positive health, environmental and economic impact that supporting local agriculture can have. Sustainable Nantucket has begun to examine ways that it can help support and increase agricultural industry on the island, and give consumers greater access to the foods produced by local farmers.

Sustainable Nantucket has worked closely with Island growers to identify the role we can play in supporting and helping to grow the Island’s agricultural industry, and, in response, we have launched the Sustainable Nantucket Land Use Partnership Initiative.

This initiative is designed to increase agricultural acreage through partnerships with land-owning organizations and individuals, and to establish a skilled agricultural workforce on Nantucket through collaboration with experienced island growers. We aim to establish an educated and trained agricultural workforce while increasing the amount of land farmed on the island. Elements of this Initiative include:

  • Making more farm land available through Land-Use Partnerships with the Nantucket Islands Land Bank and other land-owning entities
  • Expansion of our already-existing Agricultural Apprenticeship Initiative —where we pair apprentices interested in becoming farmers with experienced island growers.
  • Expanding agricultural production and “growing new growers & farmers” through education

Current Projects

  • Our Grazing Project pairs an SN apprentice with local livestock farmers from FarAway Farms to graze the Pout Pond Rd. property owned by the Nantucket Islands Land Bank. Read more – CLICK HERE.

The Future

Laying the groundwork for potential use of additional Land Bank land as well as land owned by other organizations and private landowners is in process and we continue to explore expanding acreage through partnerships with other organizations and private land-owners – eventually creating a network of grazed and cultivated land all over the island.

Become a Member of the SN Youth Council!

Wednesday, August 17th, 2011

(more…)

Sustainable Nantucket launches premier issue of new annual publication ~ Nantucket Grown™

Wednesday, July 27th, 2011

***View & download Nantucket Grown™: click here.***

We are delighted to announce that we have just released the premier issue of Nantucket Grown™, a new annual publication designed to expand our Nantucket Grown™ branding and outreach campaign encouraging island visitors and residents to source their produce and products locally.

(more…)

2011 Community Agriculture Program Workshops

Tuesday, June 21st, 2011

Throughout the year, Sustainable Nantucket, as a part of our Community Agriculture Program, will be hosting Workshops on a variety of topics relating to sustainable gardening methods, food production, and preserving local foods. Below is a complete list of workshops; click the links to read the full descriptions and to register for these workshops. (more…)

Farm to School: What’s Happening in 2011

Friday, April 29th, 2011

Farm to School is a Sustainable Nantucket Program that is operating in collaboration with Nantucket Public Schools. Linda Peterson, Director of Food Services has long been interested in offering healthy and local produce to the Island’s children. Now, with the help of committed community members, teachers, farmers and Sustainable Nantucket, Linda’s long time goal can become a reality.

————————————————————————————————————–

The Garden


Garden Infrastructure

  • Solar Powered Green House
  • 2 Hoop Houses
  • Shed
  • Class Specific Raised Beds
  • “Living Classroom”
  • Fruit Orchards
  • Deer and Rabbit Proof Fence
  • Farm Stand
  • Information Board

The Garden Manager

  • A stipend volunteer paid by SN
  • Organizes on-site school, SN Youth Council & volunteer activity in the garden
  • Coordinates with Curriculum Resource Aide
  • Cultivates and harvests garden produce

School Lunches

Sourcing Local Foods

  • Fresh produce from the garden will be used in school lunches in the spring and the fall
  • During the summer months, SN preserving volunteers will help to can, pickle, freeze & dehydrate produce for future use
  • SN and the NPS Food Services Department have been working with local farms and the farmers have offered to plant specifically to the schools needs and sell produce at a cost they can afford
  • The Sustainable Nantucket Gleaners (a currently forming group), will pick, deliver and help preserve surplus produce from local farms

2011 Curricula Integration

Curriculum Resource Aides (CRA)

  • A stipend volunteer paid by SN
  • CRA’s give teachers additional tools to teach with, NOT an additional tool that needs to be taught
  • Available to work with teachers and departments to help integrate the garden and agriculture into their already existing lesson plans
  • Helps to coordinate classroom garden activities with the Garden Manager

Conferences, Grants & Resources

  • Teachers can earn Professional Development Points
  • Teachers can apply for mini-grants to attend conferences, workshops and/or for agricultural activity materials
  • Sustainable Nantucket actively seeks grants and educational opportunities for teachers, and is on call to assist with applications and logistics
  • Massachusetts Agriculture in the Classroom is a great place to start your search

How can YOU help?

Volunteer

  • In the Garden
  • In the Kitchen
  • As an SN Gleaner

Spread the Word

  • To your children & students
  • To your friends & family
  • To local businesses

Support

Click here to download a pdf of our 2011 brochure.

With thanks to our generous sponsors… Click here to view a complete list.

SN Offering Composters at a Discounted Rate

Friday, April 8th, 2011

Sustainable Nantucket has an arrangement with a Massachusetts-based company to purchase backyard composters in bulk at a discounted rate to the benefit of those in the Nantucket community wishing either to get started with composting, or expand their current compost setup.

“The New Age Composter” is fairly compact in size, durable, easy to assemble, rodent-proof and designed to produce finished compost in as little as 60 to 80 days. The price of these composters purchased through Sustainable Nantucket is $53.00 plus shipping (an estimated $7.-$12.00 extra). (more…)

USDA Organic Cost Share Program Applications Now Available

Friday, March 18th, 2011

Applications are now available through the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources for Organic Cost Share Reimbursement. The Department has been awarded funds from the United States Department of Agriculture through the Organic Certification Cost Share Program for reimbursement to organic crop and livestock producers as well as processors that have been certified by a certifying agent.

Reimbursement is available to production and processing operations certified and/or receiving continuation of certification during the period of October 1, 2010 through September 30, 2011. Payments to eligible producers and processors will be limited to 75% of an individual’s costs up to a maximum of $750.00.

Click here for reimbursement forms, or contact Ellen Hart, 617-626-1742, Ellen.Hart@state.ma.us.

2011 Workshops – Micro-Biology in the Soil – Composting Level 2

Tuesday, January 11th, 2011

Photo by normanack via Flickr

The focus of organic gardening today is about improving the soil. Soil is made up of many living creatures–or microbiology—each having specific functions. Learn about these organisms: why they are important and how they improve the soil and plants with their presence. This is a more in-depth look at the soil, students will have a longer Q & A session with guest lecturer, Sarah Oktay, as well as a microscope viewing of live photos of compost microbiology.

Class Fee: $55.00
Teacher: Katie Hemingway
Location: UMass Field Station
Dates: April 23, 2011
Times: 10am-12pm

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER

For a full list of workshops and our refund policy, click here.

2011 Workshops – How to Make Compost Work for You!

Tuesday, January 11th, 2011
Make Composting work for you in your home garden and landscape! Learn about the different methods of backyard composting and the efficient uses of compost tea as a soil innoculant and plant immune booster. Students will gain knowledge on how to compost home waste, why compost is a necessary tool in organic landscaping, and how to use compost and compost tea effectively and in conjunction with other proper organic landscaping techniques.
This is a one day workshop.

Class Fee: $45.00
Teacher: Katie Hemingway
Location: UMass Field Station – 180 Polpis Road
Dates: April 16th, 2011
Times: 10am-11:30am
Last Date to Sign up: April 13th, 2011

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER

For a full list of workshops and our refund policy, click here.