Apprentices will be working along with farm managers and seasonal farm crew members in all aspects of the farm. Apprentices will be able to learn about greenhouse maintenance, transplanting, cultivating, irrigation systems, harvesting, post harvest handling/washing, and running a share on a weekly basis as well as the nuances involved in operating a small business.
The typical schedule during the height of the season is Monday through Friday and alternating Saturdays are required from July through September from 8am until the work for the day is done (generally at lunchtime). Work weeks are shorter in less strenuous times of year.
- Monday: harvest for the CSA and wholesale accounts. Work in share room and field work in the afternoon. (Mondays are generally our craziest days)
- Tuesday: wholesale deliveries and food pantry pick up followed by field work (transplanting, cultivating, cover cropping, etc.)
- Wednesday: light harvesting during the heavy season, UPick field volunteers to help weed the UPick fields. Field work including irrigation, field prep, weeding, and transplanting
- Thursday: harvest for the CSA. Assist with share distribution on the farm and more field work including irrigation, field prep, weeding and transplanting.
- Friday: larger projects are done including tractor/farm truck maintenance as well as greenhouse crop maintenance and larger harvests
- Saturday: (from July to September- alternating half day) harvest heavy crops like squashes and tomatoes
- Field work: includes transplanting, weeding, thinning, field prep, harvesting, floating row cover management, field clean up
- Greenhouse and High Tunnels: seeding, thinning, transplanting, watering, trellising
- Wash Station: washing, sorting, packing, labeling all crops
- Tractor work: hilling potatoes, cover cropping and mowing, walk-behind tractor tillage and bed prep
- Distribution: delivering restaurant orders, distributing CSA ( members come to the farm to pick up their share)
- Housing and Utilities: Apprentices are provided a place to live on the farm in the apprentice apartment in the farmhouse with separate entrance. It includes utilities and WIFI and has it's own kitchen, bathroom, and laundry room with washing machine
- Weekly stipend commensurate on experience
- Farm produce including your own Spring, Farm, Winter, and Fruit Share and fruit, mushrooms, and milk from neighboring farms
- Monthly meetings regarding critical topics in starting your own farm
- NOFA-NY Winter Conference attendance paid for by the farm for those apprentices with longer commitments
- Paid attendance to NOFA-NY Field Days and other farm visits
The farm is looking for motivated, hardworking individuals who have always worked well with others. You must be reliable and able to work in all weather conditions. Apprentices should have a valid driver's license. Previous farm experience is preferred.
The farm work environment is uptempo and requires the physical capability to contribute daily in a rigorous, fast paced setting. Farm work is incredibly rewarding, yet very physically demanding. Please consider this commitment before applying.
- A visit to the farm for an interview
- There is no smoking on the farm.
Please send a cover letter detailing your interest and resume to the farm by email. If we feel you may be a fit, we will contact you to schedule a phone (if you are out of town) or on farm interview. A visit to the farm is required.
Root Down Farm
5850 Shimerville Rd. Clarence Center, NY 14032
Apprenticeships at Root Down Farm provide a view inside a successful small farm and give apprentices the opportunity to actively experience, ask questions, and learn about vegetable farming. Apprenticeships require hard work and sometimes long hours, but are equally rewarding. The heart of the apprenticeship program is to train future small farmers. The farm is looking for hardworking, motivated individuals who are looking for hands-on training on a small farm. Couples are welcome to apply.