SCALING UP YOUR VEGETABLE OPERATION Practical Farmers of Iowa Conference 2011

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1 SCALING UP YOUR VEGETABLE OPERATION Practical Farmers of Iowa Conference 2011

2 Started the farm in 1990 with 5 acres

3 The CSA started in 1991 with 30 members

4 Through religious organizations and community groups the CSA quickly grew to 650 members.

5 In 2000 Roxbury Farm moved to new land to gain long term land security.

6 Through the generosity and support of Roxbury Farm CSA members, Equity Trust, and the Open Space Institute the farm has grown to over 350 acres.

7 The land, farmhouse, and barns will remain affordable for farmers in perpetuity.

8

9 Farm Organization Planning Crop Rotation Crew Management/Communication CSA Management Break Harvesting & Distribution Appropriate Equipment

10 Farm Organization

11 Field arrangement

12 50 ft. sections with 12 ft. driving lanes Irrigation traveler can cover four sections in one pull Sprayer can spray 4 beds at a time Place to drive harvest trucks and tractors Access fields in all weather Never have to carry a full produce box more than 25 ft. Easier record keeping

13 Each section divided into 8 beds Controlled field traffic system Raised beds provides drainage during downpours Never drive on bed top

14 6 ft 54 All beds are on 6ft centers with 54 bed tops

15 2 rows 3 rows 5 rows 1 row or plastic mulch 9 rows

16 Planning

17 Designing a share

18 Things to think about when designing a share: Try to have the same amount of vegetables each week Find out what your members want Include a wide variety in each share Staples that you have each week (i.e. salad mix) What is practical for you to grow? / should you quit growing some crops for the CSA? Can you purchase crops from other growers? Do you have a specialty crop that sets you apart from other CSA s? Do you want to do season extension (early/late)?

19 Roxbury Farm Shares include: Salad Crop Leafy green crop Root Crop Fruit Crop Flavor adding Vegetable (onions, scallions, garlic) Exciting Item (sweet corn, heirloom tomatoes, fennel, red peppers) Culinary Herbs

20 Week of June 11, 2010 Salad Mix Spinach Braising Mix Broccoli Raab Turnips Joi Choi Sugar Snap Peas Scallions Radishes Parsley Cilantro Week of Aug 20, 2010 Salad mix Swiss Chard Hot Peppers Red Sweet Italia Peppers Green Bell Peppers Cucumbers Beefsteak Tomatoes Juliet Tomatoes Plum Tomatoes Green Beans Sweet Corn New Potatoes Basil and Cilantro

21 Planning Program Good record keeping is key to making your planning program work for you What are your units of measurement? (length of bed, bunches, lbs.) Create greenhouse and field planting schedules that are easy to read Easy to use and update

22 Example of Roxbury Farm Greenhouse Schedule

23 Example of Roxbury Farm Field Planting Schedule

24 Crop Rotation

25 Alternate production of vegetables with cereals and legumes in the context of an integrated farm, whereby the vegetable plant families are rotated at a minimum of four years.

26 45 acres in Green Manure Crops or Hay 45 acres in Vegetables 200 acres in Hay and Pasture

27 Green Manures build soil health & provide fertility for crops

28 Rotation helps control weeds, diseases, and insects

29 Bell Beans & Oats Fall Broccoli Spring Bare Fallow Sorghum Sudan Grass Potatoes Oats Late Summer Bare Fallow

30 Vegetable Crops Harvesting Time Irrigation Spraying Row Cultivation Other pest control issues Harvest methods

31 Early Morning Crops Salad Mix Spinach Herbs Broccoli Rabe Braising Mix Arugula Bunched Beets, Turnips, Radishes, etc.

32 Plasticulture Cucumbers Summer Squash/Zuc Tomatoes Peppers Eggplant Cantaloupe

33 Fall Brassicas Broccoli Kales Collards Cauliflower Cabbages

34 Sweet Corn Root Crops Snap Beans

35 Crew Management

36 Written Policies & Agreements

37 Clear Harvest Standards

38 Crop Manual

39 Planting & Seeding Schedules

40 Roxbury Farm HOME DATA 2006 Lindenwald Field Map Section 1 Section 2 Section bu/bed 44.8 bu 5.8 bu/bed 44.8 bu 5.8 bu/bed 44.8 bu 1st Peas 1st Peas 1st Peas 1st Peas 2nd Peas 2nd Peas 2nd Peas 2nd Peas Chard Scallion 1 Chard 2 Scallion 2 3rd Peas 3rd Peas 3rd Peas 3rd Peas tatsoi Tatsoi / Turnips turnips Radish / Arugula Mini Cabbage Mini Cabbage / 2nd Tatsoi Broccoli Rabe Broccoli Rabe / 3rd Tatsoi ROUTE 9H Field Maps for Planting & Seeding

41 TRANSPLANT SPACING CROP ROWS SPACING (IN.) NOTES Basil 3 9 lannen: 9" sprocket, every cup Broccoli 2 12 lannen: 12" sprocket every cup Broad Beans 2 5 lannen: 5" sprocket, every cup Brussel Sprouts 2 36 lannen: 18" sprocket, every other cup Cabbage 2 12 lannen: 12" sprocket, every cup Cabbage, Mini 3 12 lannen: 12" sprocket, every cup Cantaloupe 1 12 water wheel Cauliflower 2 24 lannen: 12" sprocket, every other cup Celeriac 2 12 lannen: 12" sprocket, every cup Celery 2 9 lannen: 9" sprocket, every cup Chard 3 9 lannen: 9"sprocket, every cup Collards 2 24 lannen: 12" sprocket, every other cup Corn, Sweet 2 14 lannen: 14" sprocket, every cup Cucumbers 1 12 water wheel Eggplant 2 18 water wheel Flowers 2 9 water wheel (use two wheels from onion wheel) Fodder Beet 2 12 lannen: 12" sprocket, every cup Garlic 2 9 lannen: 9" sprocket, every cup Joi Choi 3 12 lannen: 12" sprocket, every cup Kale 2 12 lannen: 12" sprocket every cup Kale, flowering 2 14 lannen: 14" sprocket, every cup Kohlrabi 3 5 lannen: 5" sprocket, every cup Leeks 2 9 lannen: 9" sprocket, every cup

42 Weekly Task List

43 Daily Crew Meetings

44 In the field instruction

45 Assigning responsibility

46 Transitions between jobs

47

48 CSA Administration

49 Keep members connected to the farm

50 Member Workdays

51 Membership Databases

52

53 Roxbury Farm Database (Legrand CRM)

54 Membership Database Components Contact information Purchases Pick up location Payment Options Easy to print lists and sorting ability Easy to Connect to your billing/accounting program

55 Managing Distribution Sites

56 Distribution Sites Site location: parking / easy access for delivery truck Member volunteers Paid site coordinator or volunteer site coordinators Farmers at the pick up site Relationship to the site host Other vendors using your pick up site and CSA members Relationship with a food pantry / community kitchen

57 Harvesting and Distribution

58 Harvest Standards

59 Food Safety & GAPS

60 Harvest List

61

62 Reduce number of harvest techniques

63

64

65 Large enough harvest vehicles/wagons

66 Harvest Containers

67 Early Morning Harvest

68 Salad Mix & Greens

69

70

71

72 Barn remodel Washing Barn Remodel

73 Hydro Cooling

74

75 Bunch Washer

76 Hydro Cooling

77 Late Morning Harvest

78

79 cornveyor

80

81

82 Packing

83

84 Storage Crops

85

86 Root Digger

87

88

89

90 Curing Onions

91 Root Crops Storage

92 Washing

93

94 Distribution

95 Cheat Sheet

96 Deliver Shares in Bulk

97

98 Boxed Shares

99 Equipment

100 Cost of Salad Harvester Acquisition $ 30, Cost Salad harvester per hour Tractor $ Labor 3 people $ harvester cost per hr $ Total cost per hour $ Total cost per lb salad harvester $ 0.23 Cost hand harvesting by hand $ 0.24 Depreciation = $ 24, = $ 1, purchase cost minus salvage value 20 years of use (purchase cost+salvage value+depreciation) X Interest in $ = $ 1, = $ real int. 2 2 (purchase cost+salvage value+depreciation) X Insurance in $ = $ = $ ins. rate 2 2 Housing in $ = $ 0.31 = $ cost of building per sq foot X sq feet required Maintenance $ Cost per year: $ 2, Cost per 36,000 lb 36,000 $ 0.07 Capacity hand labor per hour 50 lb 50 $12.00 harvester per hour 400 lb 400

101 Determine the working width of all equipment and set the wheel width of all tractors row 1 row 2 row 3 row 4 row 5 row 6 row 7 row 8 row 9

102 High Clearance with creeper gear Utility with creeper gear

103 Cultivating tractors

104 Quick Hitches

105 Jiffy Quick Hitch System

106 Tillage & Cultivation

107 Flail Mower to incorporate cover crops and green manure

108 Sub soil or Yeoman Plow

109 Imants Spader

110

111 Chisel Plow

112 Coulter Chisel Plow with S Tine attachment

113 Perfecta II Harrow

114 Bed Former

115

116 Multi Discbedder

117 Weed Control

118 Seed bed cultivators with adjustable working depth

119 Basket Weeder

120

121 Row Guards on Basket Weeder

122 Bezzeride Spring Hoes

123

124

125

126

127 Rear Cultivator Tool Bar

128

129

130

131

132

133

134 Lely Tine Weeder

135

136 Parallel suspended 2 row Cultivator

137 Williams Tool Bar System

138

139 Hillside Cultivator

140 Plant Production & Transplanting

141 Greenhouse Trays

142 Flat Filler

143

144 Vacuum Seeder

145 Plug Popper

146 Water Wheel Planter

147

148

149

150 Carousel Transplanter

151 Fingers hold the plant in upright position

152 Seeders

153 Grain Drill

154 Other Equipment

155 Plastic Mulch Layer

156 Bale Shredder for Mulching

157

158 Hoops and Floating Row Cover for Season Extension

159 Spray Equipment

160 Raccoon fence and Birdgard

161 Offset Disc

162

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