Breaking Ground for a Regenerative Farmscape
This week we broke ground on an exciting new project at the Horn Farm! Expanding upon our efforts to transition to regenerative agriculture and truly restore the farm’s ecological systems, we were recently awarded a PennVest grant through the PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources to install 20 acres of mixed multifunction riparian buffer plantings. There has already been quite a bit of work done behind the scenes on this project, including design and the removal of non-native species.
However, Wednesday marked the first official day of bed prep, which will set the stage for efficient and successful tree plantings in the spring of next year. Focusing on 6 acres surrounding the creek just east of the farmhouse, we plan to grow a variety of multifunctional trees that will help to protect our waterways and keep our soils in place while producing a number of agroforestry crops.
Thanks to the Wrightsville Borough, we spread about 3 inches of leaves on the beds. We then used our tiller followed by a subsoiler to incorporate the leaves into the top 6-8 inches of the soil. Finally, we spread wood chips to cover the beds fully and allow the fungal hyphae to spread. We hope to continue this process throughout the month of November and ultimately prepare the entire 6 acres before winter takes hold.
Want to learn more? Come on out to the farm during several volunteer days this November to get your hands dirty and discover how we are redefining agriculture at the Horn Farm! Click here to learn more.
Registration Now Open: 2021 Beekeeping Training Program
Serious about bees? Learn how to become a trained beekeeper at the Horn Farm next year! Program participants learn under the supervision of our beekeeper, Mark Gingrich of Gingrich Apiaries. Over the course of the two year program, participants will work side by side with Mark and other program participants to learn all aspects of keeping bees. At the end of year one, each participant will have the option of receiving a bee colony to be moved to their home property. During the second year, participants will benefit from repetition of some aspects of the program, learn more advanced techniques and troubleshooting while managing their own hive at home. Click here to register and discover what the buzz is all about!
Farewell to the 2020 CSA & our Dedicated Farmer Trainees!
This week we said farewell to the 2020 Horn Farm CSA season! Thanks to our loyal members who are truly a Community Supporting Agriculture. It was a tough but abundant year and we couldn’t have done it without you! We are already planning for another successful year in 2021. We hope that you will rejoin us next year. We also hope to welcome new members as we plan to expand our CSA membership offerings. Stay tuned for more info on the 2021 CSA season.
As we wrapped up the Horn Farm CSA, we also said farewell to our Regenerative Farmer Training Class of 2020! Darby, Julia, and Max had perhaps the most interesting farmer training program experience to date, as they all adapted and pitched in to help the Horn Farm during this global pandemic. We are so thankful for their enthusiastic participation and willingness to ride the ups and downs of this tumultuous year with us. We couldn’t have asked for a more dedicated and talented class of future regenerative farmers. We wish them well in all of their endeavors and hope that they will carry with them the seeds of knowledge that they cultivated here at the Horn Farm wherever they take root.
Horn Farm Center’s New 2021 Land Steward Training Program
We are pleased to announce a brand new training program from the Horn Farm Center. A holistic hybrid of the Horn Farm Center’s Regenerative Farmer and Woodland Steward Training Programs, this new training program is an immersive learning experience focused on deep ecological literacy and skill-building that will empower students to restore damaged ecosystems and reintegrate into the landscape in a way that supports a healthy human lifestyle.
Using a whole systems approach, students will learn in the Horn Farm’s cultivated, wooded, and wild spaces. Led by Horn Farm Woodland Steward, Wilson Alvarez and Field Manager, Andrew Horn, students will explore a combination of food cultivation and land stewardship practices as result of a deep foundational understanding of ecological systems.
This is an opportunity to learn to integrate semi-wild spaces with both annual and perennial agricultural production, focusing on the Horn Farm Center’s work to create a regenerative farmscape. Participants will also explore ways to restore ecosystem health by applying the principles and techniques of disturbance-based forest management.
Is 2021 your year for land stewardship? We hope you can join us as we practice hands-on techniques for working to restore the land.
The landscape is alive and we are part of it! Join us for a winter walk through the woodlands and meadows at the Horn Farm Center on Saturday, December 5th at 10am.. This ecological adventure will spark your sense of wonder and teach you about all aspects of the land we call home. We’ll focus on the broad patterns of the landscape as well as dive deep into the details of the micro-ecosystems under rocks, inside dead trees, beneath the soil, and beyond. Click here to register.
A New Way to Support Horn Farm – Become a Patron on Patreon
At the Horn Farm Center for Agricultural Education, we are committed to finding ways for humans to feed themselves while also working in partnership with nature. By restoring ecosystems, cultivating healthy soil, producing abundant yields, protecting our watershed and teaching others to do the same, the Horn Farm Center is redefining agriculture. We hope you will join us and become a part of our growing community of land stewards. Become patron of the Horn Farm Center.
Horn Farm Center is Hiring!
Do you have a wealth of skills and a heart to change the world from the ground up? Consider joining the Horn Farm team! We are now hiring for TWO part-time positions:
- An Executive Assistant who will help to support the mission of the organization by managing our administrative systems and keeping our team activities organized!
- A Community Education & Outreach Coordinator who will help to strengthen the role of the Horn Farm Center as a leader in the field of regenerative agriculture though education and outreach!
Wednesday, November 4: Riparian Volunteer Day
Thursday, November 5: Fall on the Farm: Volunteer Thursdays
Saturday, November 7: The Living Landscape
Monday, November 9: Riparian Volunteer Day
Tuesday, November 10: Riparian Volunteer Day
Wednesday, November 11: Riparian Volunteer Day
Thursday, November 12: Fall on the Farm: Volunteer Thursdays
Monday, November 16: Riparian Volunteer Day
Tuesday, November 17: Riparian Volunteer Day
Wednesday, November 18: Riparian Volunteer Day
Monday, November 30: Riparian Volunteer Day
Tuesday, December 1: Riparian Volunteer Day
Wednesday, December 2: Riparian Volunteer Day
Saturday, December 5: The Living Landscape
January 20, 2021-October 9, 2021: Beekeeper Training Program (Registration Now Open)
March 2021: Land Steward Training Program (Application Deadline: January 31, 2021)
See you at the farm!
York County has moved into the green phase for dealing with COVID-19, so we are resuming some on farm classes with modifications. Classes will be held outside and are limited to 10 participants per class. If more than one class occurs on the same day, start times will be staggered to reduce the number of individuals arriving at the same time. Multiple hand sanitizer stations are available. We will adjust as needed as time passes and things change. Participants are required to bring a mask and wear when proper physical distancing cannot be maintained. Except for family members physical distancing of 6 feet must be maintained.