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: General Farm Description: -12 years of growing and improving the same property. 1+ acres in outdoor beds. Nine 120 ft caterpillar tunnels, 2 heated greenhouse with automatic sidewalls, extensive irrigation with drip tape and sprinklers from well and creek pump for southern summers. Occasional use of BCS and tractors. Jang seeder + waterwheel transplanter. -Organic/ecological practices, 50 varieties of vegetables, cover crops, whole farm compost from hoopbarn bedding. 5-8 sow + 1 boar breeding herd. 1 acre pasture based gestation, indoor hoop barn deep bedding farrow system. -Year round production of about 75 hogs a year in groups of 10-25. April-Nov 3 acre pasture based rotation, Dec-March deep bedding indoor hoop barn system. -300 bird laying flock in a mobile wagon coop. Livestock guardian dog and 3 sheep accompany the hens. -2 farmers’ markets, 100 member customizable CSA, pork and beef CSA, small direct wholesale accounts. Marketing healthy, delicious meat sharing passion for our production methods as well as enthusiasm for cooking and enjoying the food.

CRAFT Member Farm? Yes

Internship Starts: Feb 1st-March 1st 2022-outddoor field planting ramps up in March
Internship Ends: Multi-year
Number of Internship Available: 1
Application Deadline: open until filled, working interview preferred
Minimum Length of Stay: 1 year

Internship Details:

Second Position-We are hiring 2 positions for 2022. This listing is for the Vegetable Grower: Harvest + Wash/Pack Assistant. Please see our other listing for Livestock Assistant Manager.

Does working in a tight crew on a small, ecologically focused, direct market, commercial vegetable and pastured pig operation sound exciting? We want to hear from you! At Bluebird Farm we strive for a balanced and smooth workflow. We use careful record keeping, keen observation, and constant communication to ensure that the right task is getting done at the right time with the right tools. Whether that is catching an insect outbreak early or noticing a parasite problem in a litter of piglets before it’s obvious. We work quickly and efficiently to grow tons of nutritious produce-planting, weeding, lots of harvesting, meticulous wash/pack, and fast paced farmers markets. While we work hard and fast towards goals on the big picture we love noticing and appreciating the small things-beneficial insect eggs here, healthy looking soil there, a perfectly irrigated tomato patch, a pasture where the hogs were moved just at the right time.

We are hiring 2 people to fill two positions for 2022- Vegetable Grower: Harvest + Wash/Pack and Livestock Assistant Manager. Both positions are vegetable growing positions with plenty of overlap since Bluebird Farm is a small farm. These people will join Marie and William, Naomi, our returning Assistant Garden Manager, and Clare, our returning Assistant Harvest and Post Harvest Handling Manager.

Please see our other posting for Livestock Assistant Manager Details

Educational Opportunities: Training: We want people to clearly learn our farm systems and be confident operating in those systems. We operate as a team of 6 (4 crew members plus William and Marie.) When everyone is following the system and using the same terminology it allows a crew to be confident in their methods and task completion and communicate clearly about those tasks. When things are running smoothly and according to plan everyone has more energy and confidence to enjoy growing good food together. Training of Farm Systems-We are very hands-on in the training of new hires for dangerous tasks like boar moving or feeding, tasks with high costs of mistakes like learning tractors and seeding, or jobs that involve annual and multi-year knowledge of our farm like pasture management or cover crops. We are also very hands on teaching the ways we have found to use our specific systems efficiently. Over the years we have developed specific workflows and techniques that best suit our equipment, land, crops, and crew size.

Skills Desired: Please see full job description in secondary website listing. 2-3 full seasons of farm field experience (full season = 6-9 months) must have at least one of those year’s harvesting efficiently on a vegetable farm business. Or 1 year experience on a single vegetable farm with farmer recommendation and at least 1 year agriculture education program completion. Market, experience with farmers’ market or sales. Vegetable experience. Focus on efficient and fast harvesting with an eye for quality, details, and teamwork. Vegetable wash/pack experience. Vegetable growing and harvest at required speed and quality. Harvest Speed Standards, depending on condition of vegetable crop 40-60 bunches of greens/ hour or 30-60 bunches of herbs/ hour. Able to bend, crouch, squat, stand, and kneel for long periods of time. Able to lift 30-40 lbs consistently, 50 lbs frequently. From ground to chest and ground to shoulders. Ability to see small shapes and textures and different shades of colors of plants and ability to see animals and objects at a distance across a field or hoophouse. Ability to use hands for fast fine motor movements with plants, tools, twine, scissors, rubber bands, etc. Be able to hear customers, team members, livestock in a busy farmers’ market, harvest, or livestock care setting. Clean driving record for past 5 years, and a valid drivers’ license, large vehicle driving experience- This position requires extensive use of several trucks, a loaded 2 axle market trailer on highways, cargo van. Proof of up to date Covid-19 vaccination. Communication is key on a small farm. This position entails daily communication with Marie and William and with the larger crew. We communicate and focus on details around harvest counts, CSA or market packing details, different trellis methods for different vegetables, detailed info on animal health monitoring or mobile hog water systems.

Meals: No

Stipend: Vegetable Grower: Harvest + Wash/Pack Assistant: Weekly stipend $320/week stipend. private housing provided. No housing or utility costs and farm food provided. Farm food: All you need in vegetables. Dozen eggs and 2 pounds ground sausage/beef per week. $800+ in meat, $300+ in eggs, and over $1000 in vegetable value in a year.. Sick leave: Eligible 8 weeks after start date. 1 day paid sick leave accrued every 2 months. Vacation time: Eligible for 1 day scheduled vacation 6 months after start date, 1 day scheduled vacation 8 months after start date, and 5 days scheduled vacation time 12 months after start date.

Housing: Yes

Preferred method of Contact: email