Need Funds For Hoop House Round Harvest At Farm

Story

Hand Picked Farm will construct a hoop-house to extend the growing season and provide more organic food to the community year round.

Story

Hand Picked Farm is the culmination of my growing experience.  From being a child in my Pappou's (greek for Grandfather) garden, to engaging in a full time apprenticeship in Sussex County, NJ, I have grown food with care and love.

In order to share this love with the community year round, Hand Picked Farm will construct a hoop house to extend the growing season, and more importantly to increase the capacity of the local food system to feed those in the community.  Pairing my knowledge and the protection the hoop house provides, I will be able to grow some excellent produce every month of the year!

The first harvest will be complete by August 2013 which is projected to be 2 tons of organic, heirloom tomatoes.  Varieties include Brandywine, Moskvitch, Red Pear and SunGold.  It does not end there though, once the tomato vines have had their run, zucchini and summer squashes will take over and harvested in late october, providing a taste of summer as the seasons change.  Through the cold winter months I will produce organic greens: spinaches, kales, chards, cress's, asian greens, etc.  Once the greens are harvested transplant production will start for 2014, then tomatoes in the spring, and the cycle continues!

$1000 will get all of the material to construct a 15'x65' hoop house, irrigate it using water-saving drip irrigation, and cover all of the fuel cost for driving around getting all of this.  I already have 432 tomato plants in plug-flats ready to move in!  This is a small sum in comparison to the bounty of fresh, organic and unique food that I can produce within the hoop house.

I will construct the hoop house over a 5 day period with the help of friends.  I have already tested the soil, spread manure, and tilled the site to a fine tilth.  

Your support not only directly helps my efforts, but keeps the agricultural tradition alive by ensuring the viability of farming as a career for a young farmer like myself.  Your pledge is a vote that strongly says "I support small scale sustainable agriculture!"

Risks and challenges

Farming is risky business - lets be up front! This hoop house and irrigation are a big part of risk mitigation for the farm, as it allows me to control a few of the variables in the growing process. That being said a hurricane could potentially damage the structure, and if we have a serious drought I will have limited ability to irrigate. I have a good deal of experience and endless enthusiasm and love for growing food!