Field crew, Field leader – Bellair Farm

Contact information
Farm Address:
5290 Bellair Farm
Charlottesville, Virginia, 22902

Primary Contact: Nathaniel Ratchen
Secondary Contact: N/A

Primary Phone:
    Number: 5038631202

Secondary Phone
    Number: N/A


Internship information
General Farm Description: Our farm is a large historic estate located just 20 minutes from downtown Charlottesville. We operate a 23-acre, 400-member certified organic vegetable CSA and also raise pork, beef, and laying hens.

CRAFT Member Farm? Yes

Internship Starts: March
Internship Ends: October
Number of Internship Available: A number of positions are available
Application Deadline: As soon as possible
Minimum Length of Stay: A season comittment

Internship Details:

Summary: We are looking for some well-rounded farmers to join our team! Our farm is a large business with multiple enterprises and opportunities for advancement or changing of roles. WE have multiple hiring needs and are flexible about designing roles to fit the skills of our applicants. All of our positions require manual labor under outdoor conditions. We are looking for general field crew, a crew leader position, and a greenhouse and packhouse management role. We have found that we can cleave off these different roles to compliment applicants and existing employees. This ad is a catch all for the different roles and needs we have on the farm. You are encouraged to apply; and during the interview process we can work together to figure out where your experience and desires would best work on the farm. 


Hours: Part time or Full time, Seasonal or Year-round. On-season (April-Nov), you can expect up to 45 hours per week and off-season (Dec-Mar), more like 30-35. Hours will be agreed upon at hiring.


Start Date: March or earlier depending on position.


Compensation: Hourly positions start at $15 per hour for general field crew. We have salaried positions for crew leaders. Salaried positions can include healthcare for full time management level staff and are starting at 30,000 w/ healthcare included. Other benefits include one-hour paid lunch, free veggies and eggs, paid time off, crew discount on meats, and farm access for walking and swimming


We’re looking for someone who

  • Has a knowledge and/or strong interest in vegetable production
  • Can work outside in hot, cold, or wet conditions
  • Can repeatedly lift and carry 60+ lbs
  • Has attention to detail
  • Is able to excel in a fast-paced work environment
  • Has an understanding of the importance of food safety


Skills preferred for management level positions:

  • Has at least 2 years experience in a manual labor field with excellent references
  • Tractor operation experience
  • Spanish language skills
  • Manual transmission proficiency
  • Small engine starting proficiency
  • Irrigation and electric fencing experience
  • People-management experience of some kind
  • Experience with greenhouse management
  • Can effectively manage other field crew during straight-forward tasks like harvesting
  • Has a knowledge and/or interest in livestock (beef, pork, egg) production


We are an equal opportunity employer and encourage people from marginalized communities to apply!


General Duties

  • Harvesting vegetables according to our harvest standards
  • Greenhouse seeding/ field-planting vegetables
  • Weeding, trellising, installing landscape fabric, row covers
  • Field clean-up: pulling plastic and landscape fabric
  • Performing daily animal chore routine
  • Washing vegetables
  • Organizing walk-in cooler and providing Michelle a daily inventory


Experienced Applicants only:


Crew Leadership

  • Act as a default crew leader when Nat or Michelle aren’t present. For daily tasks like planting, weeding, and harvesting:
    • Make sure the harvest is correct: from the right beds in sufficient quantities and at the correct quality standards
    • Make sure transplantings are correct: the right varieties in the right spacing and planted properly
    • Keep crew momentum up and set folks in tasks appropriate to their strengths. 
    • Communicate frequently with management about crew performance and morale as well as changing field conditions
    • Make sure farm SOPs are being followed
    • Help ensure record keeping systems are functioning. Help with systems design issues as they arise.


Greenhouse Management:

  • keep work stations organized and help keep seeding, watering, and fertilizing on schedule
  • monitor plant health and greenhouse systems (fans, heat mats, etc)
  • manage employee performance in the greenhouse (effective watering, proper seeding, pulling correct plants for planting, etc)
  • help advocate for important tasks that need doing in the greenhouse
  • help develop and maintain systems for retail plant organization; working with inventory manager


Specialized Labor Tasks 

  • execute field seedings according to field schedule with G tractor
  • execute field tillage and cultivation on G tractor, JD5075M or other 
  • execute specialized labor tasks around animal husbandry (setting up new paddocks and moving animals)
  • Install fencing or irrigation systems
    • Turn on/off and monitor irrigation systems as needed
  • help with record keeping around field seedings, cultivation, fertilization and harvest records


Educational Opportunities: This is an hourly paid position and does not include education. There is however loads to learn for folks who are interested and we love to talk farming. Likely there is much more to learn here than at most internships available.

Skills Desired: Look above

Meals: No

Stipend: Hourly wage

Housing: No

Preferred method of Contact: email