Number of Workers Sought2
Type of FarmHay & Forage, Grain, Large Animal (cattle, sheep, goats), Dairy, Vegetable, Fruit/Orchard
Marketing StrategyCommunity Supported Agriculture, Farmers' Market, Wholesale, Commodity
Pay Rate$200-$400 per week/D.O.E. We supply housing, and vegetables will be available from the garden. We also cook one meal per work day.
Describe yourself, your family, background, farming experience, philosophy, goals and interestsCale and Nicole strive to create a learning opportunity within a working, diversified, organic, family farm. Farming is not just our business; it is our lifestyle. We enjoy the hard work and long hours, and we enjoy knowing that we are feeding a substantial amount of people all around Montana. Between the two of us, we have a combined 30+years of experience. We each have worked for the last 17 Montana seasons, farming in a variety of methods (dairy, grain, hay, organic, large scales, small scale, CSA, market, wholesale); twelve of the seasons have been on our current farm in Moiese. We tinker, we invent, we take the long way around, we still do things by hand; we become more efficient every year, we adopt new methods, we welcome new ideas.
Describe the physical setting of your farm and the nature of the community in which you liveWe live on 18 acres in the Mission Valley. To the west is the Flathead river, to the east are the mountains. Glacier National Park is 2 hours north, and Missoula is 1 hour south. Flathead Lake is 45 minutes north, and The Bison Range is 10 minutes from the farm. We are surrounded by a variety of farms and farmers, including big scale grain farmers and small scale organic farms. The valley that we live in feels like a close-knit family. Even with different philosophies and farming styles, all the farmers in this valley support each other and treat each other with respect.
Describe your farm operation
We grow as many different veggies/flowers/herbs as the Montana climate will allow. We have about 5 acres in vegetables, 10 acres in alfalfa, and the rest in pasture. On the farm you will find one horse,3 dogs,3 cats, and a small herd of goats which we use for milk and cheese production. All the animals help with fertilizing and grazing the fields.(When they aren't driving us crazy, chasing them back into their fences!)We have three tractors which we use to plow, seed, cultivate, and harvest.We do most of the planting and harvesting by hand, the "old fashioned way".We market our produce at farmer's markets,through a 350-person CSA,and through the Western Montana Grower's Cooperative. We use only local manure or organically approved fertilizers, herbicides, or pesticides.We practice a wide array of cover cropping techniques and crop rotation.We certify with a local organization called "Homegrown".We do not believe in killing animals unneccesarily.Cale is vegetarian; Nicole and the kids eat local, humanely raised meat.We have three barn cats, three border collie dogs, two wild children (Connor and Clara) and one "old, retired couple" (A.K.A. Cale's parents, Mary and Dick).
Describe the work to be performed by applicantInterns will help with all aspects of the farm. Planting, weeding, harvesting, marketing, tractoring, watering,and eating. We use a small, wood-heated greenhouse to start some plants, and direct seed the rest either in hoop houses or outside. Early in the season, interns will help in the greenhouse; late in the season, interns will help with large harvests of storage crops and "clean-up". Friday is market day and interns may be asked to either help at market or stay and help on the farm. From May to June, there is a market on Saturday that we attend, which the intern may join us ( for extra pay) but will not be required to.
What do you expect of a worker?Interns are expected to work AT LEAST an 8-hour day, Monday through Thursday, and markets on Friday.The weekly wage is dependent on experience/work ethic.We are searching for one person, or a team of 2 who is/are excited to work hard and really learn what it takes to be your own farmer.This would require someone who considers themselves able to work alone, take constructive criticism well, be detailed-oriented, and passionate about producing quality vegetables. We also ask that interns cover the farm duties (i.e. Milking goats, feeding animals, harvesting, weeding, watering, etc...) one weekend a month while we leave with our family. Weekends typically are not work days for interns. The work can be sometimes tedious, sometimes physically demanding. We do not expect anyone to know everything but we would like to work with people who honestly want to learn how to farm and who are willing to learn our methods. In the event a day(s) off is needed, we are flexible. The greatest qualities an intern can possess are respect, enthusiasm, good attitude, willingness to learn, patience, flexibility, and humility, along with a sense of humor.
Describe the learning and educational opportunities available to a workerInterns can learn all aspects of farming in this valley. We are surrounded by farmers and no one practices exactly the same kinds of agronomy. You could learn about large scale, commodity farming, seed-saving, mono-cropping, small scale organic methods, dairy work, cattle farming, hay or grain-farming. The list is endless. Cale and I have worked on a variety of farms over the last 15 years. Combined we have over 30 years of experience. We have a plethora of books, magazines, and articles on farming. WE are an open book. As for our farm, we practice organic farming with a dash of animal husbandry and hay production. Parenting advice comes free of charge as well. We will spend many days working together, especially early on. After we feel an intern has an understanding of our methods and expectations, then they will either work more on their own or in a team of 2. Questions are indespinsible. We cannot know what an intern wants to learn unless we are asked questions. If classes or lectures are offered off-farm, then we will try our hardest to let you know about them and allow you time to attend them. There are several other farms and interns in our area to connect with.
Are you a full-time farmer?Yes
Explain the room and board arrangements or describe options in your areaWe offer two different housing options. The first, known as "the shack", is roughly 10 by 12 feet. The second, the "treehouse", is roughly 8 by 8 feet, and yes it is built into a tree. Below the treehouse is a kitchen which is used only by the interns. Bedrooms are outfitted with a full-sized bed, storage space and electricity. The kitchen is outfitted with running water, electricity, propane stove, toaster oven, pots, pans, cooking utensils, silverware, plates, cups, electric tea kettles,and a small refrigerator/freezer.Bathrooms are located equal distance away, either in our house or in Cale's parent's house.Our house has laundry facilities available for intern use. We provide one large meal a day during the work week. This usually takes place in our house around 1 or 2:00 in the afternoon. Interns are responsible for their own breakfast, dinner, and snacks.The farm offers vegetables, and possibly local eggs.Children and guests will constantly be around, asking interns to join in a game of ping-pong or bar-b-que feast. We like to balance work with pleasure as much as possible and we would like our interns to do the same.
Please attach any photos of your farm and operation
Farm Address45865 Schoolhouse Lane, Moiese, MT 59824
What are the dates of your position?June- October/ possibly longer ; 4-5 days per week, plus one weekend a month. One week of paid time off is offered, as long as it is not during peak work weeks.
Are you open to shorter periods of employment or do you prefer that workers stay the full season?Shorter periods of employment possible, Prefer full season
Please share three things you think people should know about living with you.We welcome all people of all backgrounds and beliefs. We have two children, ages 9 and 12, three border collies, three cats, and several goats. We share the property with Cale's parents, whom have a house in which the bathroom for interns is located. We are a family farm, in every sense of the word. We invite interns to be a part of our family, but at the same time we appreciate having our own space after work is done, and on the weekends. We encourage interns to entertain themselves as much as possible. We live in a very rural setting, which may prove to be difficult at times for people who seek comfort in a more modern world. However, we do have great access to the river and mountains!
Do you have a website, social media account, or job posting anywhere else?Yes
Online Listing URLhttp://www.instagram.com/ploughsharefarm