Farm Photo Friday: March 14, 2014

Every Friday we share some snaps from our 333-acres in Kutztown, PA. Our photographers? The staff members who keep this farm chugging along. Enjoy a sneak peek at what’s going on here at Rodale Institute!

Today we welcome the attendees of Dr. Karreman's 2-day class, "Learn from the Vet: Dairy Cows."  Pretty cozy spot to take in a workshop, wouldn't you say?

Haven't you missed the sounds of the tractor over the winter?  Where's this one headed?  Let's follow it and find out!

Whattya know?  There's a whole team working on putting new raised beds in the high tunnel.  Here's our star volunteer, Mike Horvath (front & center), with Jeff Moyer, Farm Director, (on the tractor), Don Jantzi, Groundskeeper (far right), and Sam Moll, Greenhouse Manager (in the overalls).

So that's why they needed the tractor - they're dumping compost into the beds so we that we're ready for our plant sales!  The first one is coming up soon: Cold Crop Plant Sale at Rodale Institute in Kutztown is April11th & 12th.

Sam tells Jeff, "We're looking good!"

Sam's work is made easier with this broadfork which was donated to the Institute by Meadow Creature!  Thank you Meadow Creature!

It's an understatement to say that Kim Schroeder, Facilities Director, moves fast.  This is a rare sighting, but you can see that she is a blur of lightning quick activity.

"Slow down, there, Kim!  Whatcha got?  Rodale Institute farm fresh eggs?!  Well then, let's stage this photo properly.  Hold the eggs just so...  A little higher..."

Moving right along...  Can you guess what's happening in this photo?  (And they're not making paper mache, so don't guess that.)

For starters, we have (left to right) Cynthia James, Food Production Specialist, Rick Carr, Compost Specialist, and Dr. Zinati, Interim Director of Research.  Here's a clue:  they're working on a habitat for...

Worms!  In the practice of vermicomposting, there is one worm to rule them all, so to speak.  The Red Wiggler!  Here you can see (if you squint your eyes,) that Rick's thumb is pointing to a tiny baby Red Wiggler.

Here is a shot of some of the finished vermicompost.  Rick is in his element!

At the root of organic practices is a respect for the life in the soil.  Most of those life forms are a lot tinier than worms though.  That's why the worms are sort of like ambassadors from the soil; we can see them without a microscope!

Ross Duffield, Farm Manager, caught in the middle of what we like to call "the Mr. Rogers."  No one likes muddy muck boots making a mess on clean carpets.  "But Ross, why are you cleaning up so early today?"

Of course, he's sneaking in after his chores to catch the rest of Dr. Karreman's class!  Better late than never.  Well done Ross!

Don’t forget… Show your organic love!

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