Farming Internship – Pie Valley Farm
Last Updated On: diciembre 4th, 2023 at 11:59AM MST
Contact informationFarm Address:
590 Butler Mill Road
Woodville, Alabama, 35776
Primary Contact: J.P. Rogers
Secondary Contact: N/A
Internship informationGeneral Farm Description: Pie Valley Farm is located in Woodville, a small town about 30 minutes south of Huntsville in North Alabama. It is situated outside the city limits in the county. Pie Valley Farm is a nascent ten-acre farm in its second year of existence. It has large established oak and hackberry trees on its north area and is blessed with a large open southern exposure with land that gently slopes from East to West. Blueberries, blackberries, and figs have been established and are growing to maturity. Flower farming is the current path forward with vegetables as an option. Raised beds and in-ground options are being developed. Seeding room is almost complete and a walk-in cooler is planned for construction in Spring 2024 or sooner. Available farm equipment includes: tractor (32HP) with front-end loader, 3-point attachments (tiller, disk, box blade, post hole digger, grading blade, etc.), greenhouse (20'x60') with propane heater, walk-behind weed eater, standard garden tools, lots of construction tools, motorized wheelbarrow, walk-behind tiller, 16' low-boy trailer, 12" dove-tail trailer, and commercial zero-turn mower. The barn is 28'x32' and has a concrete floor. A well supplies all irrigation water. All irrigation is drip-type. Farming practices are organic in nature however there are no plans to be "certified" organic. Pie Valley Farm is very fortunate that the soil is a sandy loam . . . not the normal red clay found throughout North Alabama. All plantings are supplemented with compost from mushroom farms in Tennessee or organic cow manure compost from the local big box store depending on availability. Currently, the farm is "NASCENT" and does not create income. I am currently 65 years old. I've wanted to farm since I was 14 years old. Farming is a pretty tough career at any age. It is a career that demands your best in order for the farm to be its best. There is a charm, enchantment, and mystique associated with farming that is real, but is sometimes elusive when you've lost a few gallons of sweat in the hot humid summer praying your crops survive the vagaries of weather, weeds, blight, insects, and your own ignorance just to name a few hurdles toward success. Farming is journey I've been dreaming to start for over 50 years. So, how 'bout you . . . ready to join me on this journey? I am an evangelical Christian and Pie Valley Farm is a reflection of my faith and traditional Christian values.
CRAFT Member Farm? No
Internship Starts: Yesterday!!!
Internship Ends: Flexible, but ultimately at my discretion.
Number of Internship Available: Christian couple preferred, children and pets okay
Application Deadline: None
Minimum Length of Stay: Three months
Much of this internship will be about learning and working together. All ideas are welcome, but I have the final say on implementation. 2024 will not be a high production year. Tasks will include maintenance of current crops, selling what makes sense to sell, and preparing the farm for higher flower production in 2025. Flowers will be from seed and planted in raised beds and in-ground rows. The intern will assist with building approximately 80 raised beds and filling the raised beds with soil mixture. Unfortunately, Pie Valley Farm is not immune to weeds and their management will part of the intern’s duties as well. The blackberry orchard includes one row of grapes and two rows of goji berries. These three rows are experimental and are in dire need of weed suppression as are the blackberry rows. The blueberries are surrounded by a 6″ – 8″ layer of soil conditioner (mulch) and weed suppression is working pretty well in that orchard. However, weekly weeding is still needed. The blueberries are fed fish emulsion, soil acidifier, and Epsom salt using fertigation thru the drip irrigation system. Blackberries are currently only fed worm tea thru the drip irrigation system. The flowers will also need to be irrigated via drip irrigation and the intern will help with design and construction of that system once the raised beds are in place. If time permits a shade house is planned for construction in 2024 and will be used to produce shade loving ferns for cut flower arraignments.
Although not mandatory, the best candidate will be a traditional married Christian couple. The candidate’s faith and values must align with my faith and values which are reflected to the community at large thru the activities of Pie Valley Farm. Both husband and wife are welcome to work on the farm. However, it is expected that one of the spouses will work on the farm and one will work off the farm to generate income for paying living expenses.
Educational Opportunities: This is an opportunity for the intern to experience "starting" a farm and learning if farming is the lifestyle and career they want to pursue.
Skills Desired: A passion for farming would be a plus. However, I know the intern may be merely infatuated with the idea of farming and that is okay with me. Construction skills are highly desired. Developing online marketing and social media presence is a strong desire. Intern should have experience with outdoor physical labor. Experience with agriculture processes or food production is desired. Thinking outside the box and really wanting to learn is important. The intern must not be reticent, should willingly accept responsibility, take the initiative to accomplish scheduled work, and be motivational. The intern must follow directions and endeavor to work quickly and efficiently. Intern must be willing and able to hear work assessments and know those assessments are intended for the betterment of the farm (not personal attacks).
Stipend: Discuss at interview.
Housing: Optional. The house is a 1993 double-wide trailer with four bedrooms. It ain't pretty, but it is serviceable. The house can be divided to accommodate private entrances. Dividing the house would allow for separate bedrooms, separate bathrooms, and a shared kitchen. Laundry is inside the house and available to the intern. A camper trailer or RV can be accommodated as well. A fifth wheel camper is available on-site as well.
Preferred method of Contact: email