No-Till, Vegetables & Flowers – Banford Road Farm

Contact information
Farm Address:
11708 Banford Rd
Woodstock, Illinois, 60098

Primary Contact: Jason Sonnefeldt
Primary Phone:
    Number: 18478638732



Internship information
General Farm Description: Banford Road Farm is a certified organic, no-till, human-powered farm. We are laser-focused on soil health and work to maintain ecological balance all across the property. We have one acre of vegetable production carved out inside of eight acres of woods. Lab data drives our soil regeneration through the use of a Haney soil test that verifies that we are in fact increasing subsurface soil carbon and building organic matter over time.

CRAFT Member Farm? No

Internship Starts: March 1
Internship Ends: November 30
Number of Internship Available: 2
Application Deadline: Feb 15th, 2024
Minimum Length of Stay: 3 months

Internship Details:

We are looking to hire 1 full time employee and 1 part time employee this season for our 1 acre intensive vegetable and flower farm. The FULL TIME position is Tuesday-Saturday, 8am-4pm, (40 hours/week) and pays $17/hour with free housing and utilities. Extra hours might be available if you are interested. The full time position starts March 1st and ends November 30th. This is a very small farm, so at peak season, our crew will only be a maximum 3-4 people including full and part timers. A small crew is nice because everyone knows each other and it’s very peaceful. The full timer will learn every aspect of running a small farm business, from seeding to harvesting to selling at one of our farmers markets. We grow about 50 varieties of vegetables, herbs, and flowers. We started the farm in 2022 and it is thriving. You will learn no-till soil management strategies, use some of the best tools on the market, and work both in the field and inside our greenhouses.

The PART TIME position is Tue-Friday, 8a-12p, and possibly Saturday 6a-2p, (16-24 hours/week) and pays $17/hour WITHOUT housing. The part timer must live near Woodstock. The part time position starts May 1st and ends Oct 31st. Part time duties include washing and packing vegetables, harvesting flowers, arranging bouquets for market, and possibly selling at the farmers market.

FULL TIME duties include:

-Seeding winstrip trays, paperpot flats, and microgreens in our propagation house
-Preparing our permanent beds for planting
-Moving compost around the field with a Kawasaki Mule 4×4
-Staking out new beds and adding compost to the surface
-Direct seeding with a Jang seeder
-Hand transplanting with a gridder to mark bed lines
-Harvesting vegetables, flowers, and herbs in the field and inside our 2 production greenhouses
-Making flower bouquets
-Trellising greenhouse tomatoes and cucumbers
-Precision cultivation with wire weeders, flame weeder, as well as some light hand weeding
-Washing and packing vegetables for sale at farmers markets
-Setting up our market display and selling at the market in Woodstock or Park Ridge (Saturdays from 7a-1p)
-Collecting eggs for personal use

Housing Details (full time position only)

-A large 2 bedroom RV, built in 2017 in excellent condition
-RV includes free Wi-Fi, electricity, A/C, heat, shower, fully equipped kitchen, and bathroom.
-Laundry machines available on the property.
-Has an incredible view of the farm from your kitchen table and from your bedroom window (the flower section is 30′ from the window 😉
-Property has 8 acres of woods and is only 5 minutes from groceries, Walgreens, etc
-5 minutes from the UP-NW Metra train that goes to Chicago every hour
-25 minutes from Lake Geneva, 15 minutes from the Fox River, 15 minutes from State and County parks with hiking and biking trails
-Woodstock, IL is 1 hour from Chicago and 1 hour from O’hare airport.

No farm experience is necessary, but you should be physically fit, reliable, focused, and interested in learning how to farm organically on a small scale. If you are interested in working with us, please email with subject line EMPLOYMENT 2024. I DO NOT want a resume or cover letter. I just want 4-5 sentences describing why you’re interested in farming. Also please include 2 professional references with their email or phone number. Top priority will be given to people interested in working the full season. If you are only interested in the part time position, please include your current location and the driving time from your home to Woodstock. Anyone who thinks they can commute daily from Chicago to Woodstock is not being realistic.

Check us out on instagram @banfordroadfarm

Educational Opportunities: I am a lifetime course member of a highly reputable online farming course, so you will have access to all the reference sheets and other management documents that I have downloaded. The course is quite comprehensive.

Skills Desired: I prefer people interested in farming as a career one day. If you're not sure about farming as a career, then I would like someone at least interested in working outside in nature doing physical and rewarding work. If you have some farm or garden experience that is good, but not necessary. My farm is run very different that most, so experience on other farms may not even be directly applicable here. As long as you are reliable, motivated, have attention to detail and can handle physical work, I can teach you everything else you need to know. Some experience doing physical work is preferred, as you will be expected to carry buckets of compost for some tasks.

Meals: No

Stipend: $17/hour

Housing: Yes, the full time position includes free RV housing with bedding and a fully equipped kitchen and bathroom and desk area. Wi-Fi, electricity, A/C and heat are included. The RV is an extra large 2017 5th wheel camper in excellent condition.

Preferred method of Contact: email