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Farm Glance: Four Season Farm, part one

August 25, 2010

The Four Season Farm on-site store also serves as the Cape Rosier Artist Collective art gallery.

We feel particularly fortunate to be writing this post for we know that many seasoned and aspiring farmers would love to visit Four Season Farm, home of Barbara Damrosch and Eliot Coleman. And if you don’t quite know why that is, simply visit a green thumb and take a peak at his or her library: it is likely you will find a few of the books written by Barbara and Eliot. With their lifelong dedication to organic farming and gardening, there is no doubt that Barbara and Eliot have, and will continue to, inspire and inform generations of gardeners and small-scale farmers. As you can imagine, it was a real treat to spend time with them and the Four Season team. We met the people and saw the place behind the books and delighted in both stories of  how they started-Eliot purchased the 60 acre wooded property from Scott and Helen Nearing at $33 per acre and cleared it by hand-and where they are heading-ideas for new tools or systems are plentiful at Four Season Farm.

Below is a glimpse of what we came across during our stay.

We came to know the tunnel shown above as the “$300 greenhouse”.

These hoop benders are available from http://www.hoopbenders.net and Johnny's Seeds.

Designed by the Four Season’s team, this small greenhouse can be assembled with materials found at any hardware store for the modest sum of approximately $300 (US, we should add). But here’s the trick: While it is not challenging to find the pipes to make the hoops, try bending those very pipes evenly with a home-made rig and you will understand the beauty of these hoop benders. Check out this video to see how they work. As for the greenhouse, Eliot mentioned that his upcoming book should include the detailed plan. Meanwhile, we’ll be bending pipes!

To secure and tighten the plastic onto the greenhouse, these home-made clamps are a cheap alternative to channel lock.

A close up of the $300 greenhouse ''scissor doors''.

As shown above, the latest generation of Eliot's chicken tractor makes use of the hoop benders.


We drove to the Bucksport farmer’s market to see the Four Season Farm stand in action. See below how the whole unit is self contained: fill it with veggies, use the van to bring it to the local farmer’s market, open it up, arrange the produce and flowers, and voilà: this great example of craftmanship is both ingenious and elegant. Now what we want to know is, can we make a similar stand light enough to be pulled by a bicycle?

Fully loaded and ready to go

All set up and waiting for the market to start

Continued: check out part two of the Four Season Farm Glance.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. sarah permalink
    October 30, 2010 10:16 am

    love the site

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  1. Farm Glance: Four Season Farm, part two « Seeking Farmland

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