coming soon...

Nov. 7thCRAFT season wrap up meeting notes

posted Nov 17, 2011, 11:48 AM by Fifth Crow Farm

Hey CRAFT-ERS.  Thank you for a fabulous season!  We just had a wrap up meeting last week and got some great feedback.  If you have any further feedback please e-mail Teresa at Or post comments to this entry. The notes from the meeting are below.

Also coming up...
At the end of the "Land Access Panel" at Double Dog there was great interest in a follow up Salon type discussion.  The proposed date is Dec. 12th.  Does that still work?  Double Dog, are you still willing to host? We could start at 6:30pm.  Not having organized a "salon" type discussion, I don't know what kind of prep we would need... Jered?  Bill?

Thank you so much to everyone for participating this year, and have a fabulous winter,

Nov 7th, 2011 Tunitas Creek Ranch Wrap up meeting notes

We discussed this year's events and how they went

Pie Ranch Potluck – Social
Free Wheeling – Start a Small Farm
Fifth Crow – Marketing
Blue House – Tractors
Markegard Family Farm– Animals on Farm
Green Oaks Creek – Soils
Double Dog Ranch – Land Access Panel
Add Water Farm – IPM

Suggestions for next year:

    •    Pass out a contact sheet at the social for people to connect over the season (email out to the listserve?)
    •    Check out “Base Line Data Sheet” from the east coast CRAFT and do something similar next year to be passed out at the 1st social meeting with
         (a spreadsheet of farms and operation details)
    •   Alternating days would improve attendance. Though Mondays work best for people, Tuesday isn't bad either.  So next year CRAFT events could
         alternate between mon. & tues.
    •    Intentionally stack events for
    •    Space/weather/time
    •    Heavy hitters earlier in the season
    •    We should have a good bye party to celebrate completion & connect people to future opportunities, but earlier than Nov.
    •    there was feed back about whether events should be a little longer and start earlier but it was decided that the 1 hr – tour, 1 hour – topic worked well
         and that in general the timing was good. feedback that Q  + A opportunities were "the best part".
    •    Slide show of farms at 1st social or some pictures to get people excited?

We discussed whether the topics should vary next year, or just rotate the same topics to different farms.  It was decided that this should be decided at a future meeting with more farms represented, but that we liked the idea of rotating the same topics and working in a couple more topics by changing the spacing between workshops. I.E. space events closer together initially- an event every 2 weeks  then every 3 weeks  then every month, ending by end of Oct.
         Suggestions for different/additional topics:
                Fertility management
                Poultry (animals on farm) to alternate farms
                Stacked agriculture

    •    Potentially beneficial to have the "start a small farm" workshop later in the lineup; but people agreed it was very helpful to orientate to the broad
resources needed to farm
    •    We had agreed each farm would touch on a set of basic info about their farm during the
         farm tour, but feedback indicated that not everyone touched on that stuff.  It was agreed that we should make a greater effort to cover those  
         categories (your systems, tools, marketing etc) during tours.

  Also discussed was the desire expressed last year to have a couple events geared at Farm managers/owners.  Teresa agreed to e-mail people about the  proposed follow up on Land Access in Dec. 

Action items:

-Readdress number and order of events/topics at next year's planning meeting
-plan Salon like meetings for winter (TomKat ranch suggested a topic " How to manage apprentices")
- Improve Website & Make more accessible for prospective and for current members!-No one knows about it- Teresa is looking for some help with this
   Pay for her time? Find someone savvy? Add to the website :more thorough contacts and seasonal list of intern contact info, directions to participating
   farms, Categories, Resources

The topic of Harvest Festival coordination was brought up again. Someone suggested it be like a Farm Tour or open house day (similar to so. Coast garden tour in may or the Tour de
Flor) people could see farms/it might help build clientele
Kay O'neill from Canada College was present and at the end of the meeting a discussion ensued about how they could help support and tie in their efforts to provide more ag related training into what our CRAFT group is doing.  Hopefully more to come from them.

Thank you Jordan for taking notes!

Three more CRAFT events to go for the season!

posted Oct 2, 2011, 8:44 AM by Fifth Crow Farm

Monday Oct. 3rd Addwater Farm: Weed Management & Integrated Pest Management

I will be covering Weed Management and Integrated Pest Management. Come on out to learn all about different pests, how to identify them and how begin a whole system approach to coexistence. I will show you my lessons learned from the last three seasons of weed management on this land. This is a pot-luck event so bring anything you feel like eating, I will be providing some cooked farm fresh food as well. In addition to the weed and pest talk as promised I will be sharing my complete budget, earnings and expenditures.I hope that I can shed light on the potential earning of a small holder with just a few markets. I really look forward to seeing you all for what will be a great event.

Addwater Farm is on Double Dog Ranch in the same site as Fifth Crow (just one greenhouse over.)
Please close both gates as you go through (cow alert!)
call Brian Coltrin Call with any question 831 334-7290

All points south of Gazos Grill: Go north on Hwy 1 turn right on Gazos Creek Road, Stay to the left onto Cloverdale Rd proceed a few minutes past Butano park, look for sign for Westland Nursery take left onto next available dirt road, marked Authorized personal only.
All points north of Pescadero Road: From Hwy 1 south turn left onto Pescadero Road, go past town of Pescadero and take next available right onto Cloverdale Rd. Proceed past the arch for Double Dog Ranch turn right on next available dirt road marked Authorized personal only. 
3800 Cloverdale Road Pescadero CA 94060.

and still to come... (details to me e-mailed as dates approach)

October 24, 2011 "Crop Planning an Records" Portrero Nuevo Farm (potluck)

Season wrap up meeting planned for November 7, 6pm at Tunitas Creek Ranch!!!

Next CRAFT event Monday July 11- Tractor workshop

posted Jul 7, 2011, 9:07 AM by Fifth Crow Farm

Hello CRAFT members!
The next workshop and farm tour will be this coming Monday, July 11th
at 5:30PM at Blue House Farm. We will do a tour starting promptly at
5:30, followed by the workshop from 6:30-7:30. Please be on time. No
potluck this time, bring a snack if you'd like.

Looking forward to it, Ryan

We'll be covering the following:

-Types of tractors and their various roles on a farm
-Tractor safety
-Primary and secondary cultivation
-Tractor equipment and their uses
-We'll also discuss my experience growing from 2 to 30 acres and the
different tractor and equipment needs along the way.

To get here from Santa Cruz:

   * Take Highway 1 North
   * Go right at Gazos Creek Road. Follow for several miles.
   * Take left fork in road, up hill, onto Cloverdale Road. Follow
for a couple more miles
   * Take a left at 2601 Cloverdale Rd., directly across from the
entrance to Butano State Park.

To get here from Half Moon Bay:

   * Take Highway 1 South
   * Go left at Pescadero Rd, which takes you east into the town of
   * Pass straight through town, (flashing red light) and continue ¼
   * Take a right at Cloverdale Rd, and continue for 4 mile
   * Take a right at 2601 Cloverdale Rd., directly across from the
entrance to Butano State Park.

Feb 7 CRAFT planning meeting notes

posted Apr 3, 2011, 9:14 AM by Fifth Crow Farm

Central Coast CRAFT, Farmers Meet N' Greet: Monday, February 7 2011
~ Double Dog Ranch~

Agenda Items: 

~Community Announcements/ Introductions
~Reflections on first season of Central Coast CRAFT  
~Who can join CRAFT, how far to cast the net?
~Google groups?/workshops?
~Coast-side Seed Initiative (Erin, Tunitas Creek)


Pie Ranch, Blue House Farm, Portrero Nuevo, Fat Cabbage Farm, Fifth Crow Farm, Tunitas Creek, Fly Girl Farms, Free Wheelin', Add Water Farm, Double Dog Ranch


Ned Conwell: In collaboration with Pie Ranch and POST the goal is to develop a mechanism for farmers to build equity, security, and land ownership. Ultimate interest is in secure and permanent tenure of the family farm in San Mateo County.

Reflections on Previous Season......

~Making community connections through farm tours
~Farm tours, a "positive learning experience" according to interns
~General consensus around farm tour hours- the visit should start earlier in the day, with a potluck at every other gathering
~Questions arose around who this is structured for? The interns? The farmers? Both?
~Interest in advanced workshops structured for Farmers
~Consensus around quarterly meetings for Farmers only "Farmer focused get-togethers"
~Consensus around educational topics to address: 10-12 topics throughout season (ie. soil science, irrigation, land access) to be hosted by volunteer farmers based on skills and experience
~Stagger farm visits to ensure stronger attendance
~General consensus around keeping Central Coast Craft regional- others out of the region are welcomed to join the google group, but will be encouraged to create their own CRAFT-like "troops"- think girl scouts

Proposal for next meeting:

1) Discuss and identify 10-12 core topics of interest- and who will host those farm visits
2) Create structure for CRAFT based on intern education and community building and collaboration: 8 Intern-focused workshops, 3 Farmer (quarterly) gatherings- discuss time frame and calendar dates
3) Seed saving with Erin at Tunitas Creek
4) Three people to moderate the google group: Teresa, Miranda & Jordan

notes taken by Maggi Aaronson

First CRAFT gathering for the season May 9th

posted Mar 28, 2011, 11:23 AM by Fifth Crow Farm   [ updated Mar 28, 2011, 11:29 AM ]

We're having a potluck!  To kick off the season, our first gathering for Central Coast CRAFT will be a potluck dinner May 9th in Pie Ranch's Barn.  All farmers, farm interns, employees, and farm friends are invited.  This is a chance to meet all the new seasonal folks as well as get to know newer members of our community, get to know better old friends and neighbors, and in general get excited about the upcoming farming season.  Hope to see you all there.

Update and highlights from the last planning meeting

posted Mar 25, 2011, 1:10 PM by Fifth Crow Farm   [ updated Mar 28, 2011, 11:22 AM ]

We just recently had our second planning meeting for the Central Coast CRAFT 2011 season.
Brian Coltrin generously compiled some notes for us presented below.  Thank you to all who attended.

Craft Meeting Notes for 3/21/11

Agenda Items

Contact info for all members of craft.

Calendar dates for farm visits for the season.

Discuss farm apprenticeship overall as a concept.

Discuss a collective fall harvest fest.

Cover the google group.

Body of Meeting

The original google group has 160 members.

New google group has been started just for the planning committee.

Sending out a summary of the meeting is the next communication.

List of participating farms discussed.

It was discussed that the mission of Central Coast Craft is to provide education for
interns and apprentices.

Group voted yes to the current participating farms with Addwater Farm and Fly Girl
Farm to be added. We agree to contact Harley, Hidden Villa, and Guillermo to see if
they would like to participate.

Scheduling visits for the season

The eight topics to be covered this year are:

1 Farm start up and finances

2 Marketing

3 Tractors

4 Animals on the farm

5 Soil fertility

6 Land Access (panel discussion)

7 Weed and pest management

8 Crop planning and records

Farm events schedule

Social Event (potluck)  May 9

Freewheelin’ Farm, Farm Start Up and Finance May 30

Fifth Crow Farm, Marketing June 20

Blue House Farm, Tractors July 11

Still Open….. Animals on the Farm August 1

Green Oaks Creek Farm, Soil Fertility August 22

Panel on land Access Airielle, Bill and Ned September 12

Addwater Farm, Weed and Pest Management October 3

Portrero Nuevo Farm, Crop Planning an Records October 24

Season wrap up meeting planned for November 7, 6pm at Tunitas Creek Ranch

Please remember that the event host will need to send out a reminder the week
before the event.

Consensus was reached that it was a great meeting! Applause

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