Bluebird Farm

Contact information
Farm Address:
4178 Bluebird Dr
Morganton, North Carolina, 28655

Primary Contact: Marie Williamson
Secondary Contact: William Lyons

Primary Phone:
    Number: 828-584-7359



Internship information
General Farm Description: We're looking for a team member to join our returning farm crew members for the 2020 season. Bluebird Farm is a diversified vegetable and livestock farm located in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains and in its 11th year of production. We are passionate about healthy soil and holistic management of our land. We raise about 4 acres of ecological, organic vegetables and rotational grass-based livestock fed certified organic grains on about 50 acres. We incorporate cover crops, vegetable rotation, and integrated on-farm livestock fertility in our methods. Tomato, cucumber, and greens production in several season extension high tunnels. Multi-species livestock systems with small sheep flock, a large pastured layer flock in wagon coop, 60 hogs, 8 sows with 16 litters of piglets/year, 12 pastured beef, and a livestock guardian dog. William and Marie work full time on the farm.

CRAFT Member Farm? Yes

Internship Starts: March/April 2020
Internship Ends: November/December 2020
Number of Internship Available: 2-3
Application Deadline: open until filled, working interview preferred
Minimum Length of Stay: 3 months

Internship Details:

See or email us for full description and application for Vegetable Apprenticeship and Assistant Grower.
VEGETABLE APPRENTICESHIP: 5 days/week, rotating weekend schedule. Your focus will be learning and working in our vegetable gardens on projects and harvesting beautiful vegetables with our team of 6 people. Learn by doing and growing. We explain and explore our agricultural practices, techniques, and business decisions as we work, with a focus on performing tasks efficiently in the field. Most of your time is with the farmers in a small crew growing vegetables; transplanting seedlings, cultivating (weeding) with hand tools, record keeping, insect and disease recognition, following soil fertility plan, harvesting, washing harvested vegetables, and packing vegetables. Assisting at market on a monthly basis. We do expect you to learn basics of animal care and chores and observe animal health very carefully when assisting with occasional larger animal projects.
ASSISTANT GROWER: 5 days/week, rotating weekend schedule. Interest and aptitude in record keeping, crew leadership/communication, vegetable wash/pack/CSA, field/hoophouse scouting + growing, veggie calendar, livestock management, assisting at market on a monthly basis and potentially leading/running our main market 1x/month…
We encourage apprentices and assistant growers to return for a second season if our farm proves to be a good match…We have winter work as a winter farm manager caring for the farm and attending winter farmers markets with winter housing in heated, insulated cabin.

Educational Opportunities: Learn by doing- work with farmers William and Marie growing beautiful vegetables, we'll share theory and experiences of farming for a living. Receive copies and training with our planting calendar, fertility charts, soil tests, and garden notebook- 10 years of compiled knowledge. Learn basics of farm animal care and health. Develop observational skills- read the land, seasons, plants, insects, and animals. We are open to discussing the farm's finances, business management, and we provide assistance with self directed business plans or production research projects. We love books and share our farm library. Opportunities to attend monthly CRAFT educational farm tours and potlucks in Western NC. Workshop and conference opportunity in the fall.

Skills Desired: We are looking for inquisitive, communicative, positive individuals that enjoy working hard with a great small farm crew in all sorts of weather. VEGETABLE APPRENTICESHIP: Outdoor work or recreation experience is preferred, but farm experience is not necessary. Must be an efficient, steady, hardworking individual. Able to follow directions and communicate with farmers and crew members. ASSISTANT GROWER: Effective communication, record keeping, planning, problem solving, and organization skills. Two full seasons on a working farm or 1 full season on a working farm and completion of a agricultural education program. Must have experience harvesting vegetables efficiently. Aptitude tending to livestock health and management or ready to learn about livestock.

Meals: On your own with farm food. All you need in vegetables. Dozen eggs and 2 pounds ground sausage/beef weekly. $475 in meat, $200 in eggs, and over $550 in vegetable value over 7 month season.

Stipend: Stipend, housing, and practical education with experienced farmers. 2 days a week off.VEGETABLE APPRENTICESHIP: $600-750 month ($150/week) starting stipend. Merit increase to $800 month ($200/week) with room to grow.ASSISTANT GROWER: $800-$1000 month ($200/week) starting stipend. Merit increase to $1000-1250 month ($250/week) with room to grow.

Housing: Personal camper with 10x20 porch+deck for evening sitting by creek in shady pine forest. Full mini kitchen in individual camper with hot water (shower and sinks) and electricity. shared WiFi. laundry at farm house.

Preferred method of Contact: email