A living laboratory for a sustainable human future.

Young Family, Farm Family

Editor’s note: Andy Bosley and Julie McMahan have operated Yellowroot Farm at Earthaven continuously for ten years. During that time, they managed to incorporate the startup of three ag fields. The Hut Hamlet field was first leased in ’05, and the Horn of Plenty near the campground in about ’08. Persimmon Grove, leased two years later, has been in biodynamic soil preparation until now. Andy’s worked part-time off land since 2009, and Julie’s worked part-time for Red Moon Herbs for over ten years, even now that it’s in Weaverville. I asked them to comment on their farm family experience; Julie found pictures; Andy wrote this letter.

 

Ramona and Julie mixing biodynamic preparation.

 

[Dear Everybody,]

We had to make a conscious decision to scale back the farm while raising our young children—Forest, going on 5, and Ramona, 2. It hasn’t always been easy to step back from the farm that has been our other baby since 2005. One of the reasons we choose to live in a rural community and help create agricultural land is because we prefer this lifestyle for raising our children (and we think they prefer it, too).

 

left: Young farm hands Forest and Ramona.

It isn’t always easy to have kids around the farm—hot sun, mechanical equipment, sharp edges—to name a few, but there are many aspects that ARE conducive, and increasingly their awareness is such that they know a good place to stand when the tractor is around, or how to take care of themselves—get a drink of water and play in the shade.

We took a short break from raising pigs but have begun again, in large part so the kids can participate in raising their own food. It’s a delight to watch Forest, the big brother, help his little sister across the road and down the path to the pig pen, each with a bucket of foodscraps for the trough. It’s in these moments that we remember why we are doing this, and how important it is that we keep it up.

 

 Ramona lends a hand.

 

Earthaven turns to Andy Bosley for a lot more than farming. He’s a key figure in our Forestry Plan, a gifted facilitator (i.e., cat herder), and has been active in the community’s men’s meetings on and off for years.

 

agricultural, Andy Bosley, biodynamic, Julie McMahan, Yellowroot Farm

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Get an inside look at THREE Earthaven Ecovillage homes.

Sign up for the newlsetter and get an exclusive video tour.

* indicates required

Upcoming Events

Virtual Earthaven Tour

Saturday, September 10 @ 2 – 4 pm EST

There’s nothing like experiencing ecovillage life first hand, but taking a virtual tour of Earthaven is a close second! 

The tour highlights ways in which Earthaven is striving to be a holistic, sustainable culture. The introductory overview tour examines the concept of sustainability at Earthaven through social, ecological, and economic lenses. Not only will you get a glimpse of what has worked through time, but also hear about what has been challenging. And you will have a chance to ask questions!

Moving firewood at Earthaven Ecovillage

Ecovillage Action Week

May 30 - June 3, 2022

Be an active participant in the everyday rhythm of life and work at Earthaven Ecovillage. In this hands-on, service-based program, you’ll work side-by-side with residents, making meaningful contributions while exploring Earthaven’s neighborhoods, and expanding your ideas of alternative living.

Earthaven Ecovillage Experience Week

July 31 - August 6, 2022

Join the homesteads, farms, and businesses of Earthaven Ecovillage for a hands-on, skill-building immersion in sustainable and climate-resilient community life. A residential service learning immersion in our unique community laboratory.

Compassion Camp

August 18-22, 2022

Our annual event focused on Nonviolent Communication, featuring classes and experiential learning. An experience designed to foster compassion and connection in our hearts, communities and world, and to spread the seeds of justice and love.