DIY Motorized Root Washer for $200: EP31

The Ag Engineering podcast is a conversation with small scale fruit and vegetable farmers to discuss tools, tips or techniques to improve the sustainability of your farm. In this episode, we visit with John Hirsch of Clearfield Farm (clearfieldfarmvt.com) to talk about building a root washer out of a cheap cement mixer.

Learn something from the show? Let me know or share feedback here! https://forms.gle/fDraaXhRUtYfBchb6

See this machine in action

Share this video with a friend

Listen to this Episode

Time Stamps for the podcast:

1:38 Picking carrots

4:43 A walkthrough and demo of the machine

11:05 Conclusions and final thoughts

Follow Clearfield Farm

Website: https://www.clearfieldfarmvt.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/clearfieldfarm/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/clearfieldfarm/?hl=en

MaterMacc Precision Planters from Market Farm Implement: EP30

The Ag Engineering podcast is a conversation with small scale fruit and vegetable farmers to discuss tools, tips or techniques to improve the sustainability of your farm. In this episode, we visit with Dave from Market Farm Implement to talk about MaterMacc Precision Planters.

Watch the Video

Contact Market Farm Implement

Market Farm Implement
Friedens, PA
(814) 443-1931

Listen to this Episode

Stories from Small Axe Farm: EP29

The Ag Engineering podcast is a conversation with small scale fruit and vegetable farmers to discuss tools, tips or techniques to improve the sustainability of your farm. In this episode, we visit with Evan Perkins and Heidi Choate of Small Axe Farm (https://smallaxefarm.com) to share some stories from their farming experience.

Learn something from the show? Let me know or share feedback here! https://forms.gle/fDraaXhRUtYfBchb6

Show Notes/Chapters

1:50 When did you feel most successful farming?

4:57 A story of challenge – Lots of physical work

9:22 Key factors that make farming sustainable for you.

11:55 How do you take time off mid season?

16:16 How to learn from others without internet?

18:43 What are you doing while listening to podcasts?

20:06 What are you looking forward to this next season?

  • Quick books
  • Packshed improvements
  • Efficiencies, like wheels

22:58 What other topics are you looking to know more about? 

  • Farm software like Harvie, Localine, barn2door,

Follow Small Axe Farm

Evan Perkins & Heidi Choate on the podcast!

Website: https://smallaxefarm.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/smallaxefarm/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/smallaxefarmvermont/?hl=en

Listen to this Episode

Spray Tables for Produce Farms: EP28

The Ag Engineering podcast is a conversation with small scale fruit and vegetable farmers to discuss tools, tips or techniques to improve the sustainability of your farm. In this episode, we share a resource we put together highlighting different spray table materials that could be used on produce farms. 

Learn something from the show? Let me know or share feedback here! https://forms.gle/fDraaXhRUtYfBchb6

Show Notes/Chapters

All the links, photos and resources from this episode can be found on our blog at go.uvm.edu/spraytables

Follow Us!

Website: go.uvnmedu/ageng

Facebook: facebook.com/uvmextageng

Instagram: instagram.com/uvmextageng

Listen to this Episode

Plastic Tarp Usage – Techniques and Tips: EP27

The Ag Engineering podcast is a conversation with small scale fruit and vegetable farmers to discuss tools, tips or techniques to improve the sustainability of your farm.  In this episode, we visit with Evan Perkins of Small Axe Farm (https://smallaxefarm.com) to talk about how they use plastic sheet material (silage tarps and greenhouse plastic) on their no-till, hillside farm.

Learn something from the show? Let me know or share feedback here! https://forms.gle/fDraaXhRUtYfBchb6

Show Notes/Chapters

1:58 How do you use tarps?

4:15 Using tarps for germination

6:41 Timing for germination techniques

10:52 Using tarps to kill (both black and clear)

  • Clear greenhouse plastic works quickly (just a day or two)
  • Follows with flame weeding

13:12 Expiration and durability of silage tarps

14:51 Storage of tarps

15:46 Ways we hold the tarps down – Sandbags

20:05 Tarping is a profit increasing practice

22:17 Adoption of this practice

24:07 Downsides of using tarps

“If somethings too much of a pain and causing you that much stress just find another way.”

Evan Perkins

Follow Small Axe Farm

Website: https://smallaxefarm.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/smallaxefarm/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/smallaxefarmvermont/?hl=en

Listen to this Episode

Spending Money on Equipment That Matters (Cheap Spreaders & Fancy Seeders): EP26

The Ag Engineering podcast is a conversation with small scale fruit and vegetable farmers to discuss tools, tips or techniques to improve the sustainability of your farm. In this episode, we visit with John Hirsh of Clearfield Farm (clearfieldfarmvt.com) to talk about using cheap equipment where you can, and investing money on important equipment.

Visit the show notes for photos, videos or relevant links at http://agengpodcast.com

Learn something from the show? Let me know or share feedback here! https://forms.gle/fDraaXhRUtYfBchb6

John Uses this ATV spreader mounted on his cultivating tractor to as a cheap way spread fertilizer while he cultivates.

Watch the Interview!

Follow Clearfield Farm

Website: https://www.clearfieldfarmvt.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/clearfieldfarm/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/clearfieldfarm/?hl=en

Listen to this Episode

Bins, Buckets, Baskets & Totes – Harvest Containers: EP25

The Ag Engineering podcast is a conversation with small scale fruit and vegetable farmers to discuss tools, tips or techniques to improve the sustainability of your farm. In this episode, we share a resource from our own blog about options when selecting harvest containers.

Visit the show notes for photos, videos or relevant links at http://agengpodcast.com

Learn something from the show? Let me know or share feedback here! https://forms.gle/fDraaXhRUtYfBchb6

All the links, photos and resources from this episode can be found in our blog Post.

Follow Us

Website: go.uvnmedu/ageng

Facebook: facebook.com/uvmextageng

Instagram: instagram.com/uvmextageng

YouTube: go.uvm.edu/agengyt

Listen to this Episode

Time Slots for On-farm Shopping: EP24

The Ag Engineering podcast is a conversation with small scale fruit and vegetable farmers to discuss tools, tips or techniques to improve the sustainability of your farm. In this episode, we visit with Pauline Stevens of Golden Russet Farm (https://goldenrussetfarm.com/) to talk about their pivot into opening up their greenhouses using a sign-up form during the covid 19 pandemic.

Learn something from the show? Let me know or share feedback here! https://forms.gle/fDraaXhRUtYfBchb6

Show Notes/Chapters

1:48 How are you selling during COVID19?

3:07 Challenges in the Pivot

5:21 Selling Seeds to gardeners

6:49 Pre-ordering plants & customers perceptions

8:27 Time slot shopping

14:19 Staggering arrivals

16:30 Sign Up Genius

20:56 Duplicating the form

24:23 Mailing list growth

25:49 Social Media Marketing

27:46 Challenges with Sign Up Genius

29:22 Tracking attendance

32:14 Getting plants to the people

33:15 Recycling flats

Sign Up Genius: https://www.signupgenius.com/

Website: https://goldenrussetfarm.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/GoldenRussetFarm

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/goldenrussetfarm/

Listen to this Episode

Should an Online Marketplace be Part of your Long Term Business Plan? EP23

The Ag Engineering podcast is a conversation with small scale fruit and vegetable farmers to discuss tools, tips or techniques to improve the sustainability of your farm. In this episode, we talk with Rose Wilson (rosewilson.com) to talk about online sales and their long term plan for your farm.

Visit the show notes for photos, videos or relevant links at http://agengpodcast.com

Learn something from the show? Let me know or share feedback here! https://forms.gle/fDraaXhRUtYfBchb6

Notes to think about

  • Is the product shippable? Or how far away is the farm? Convenient pick-up
  • Shipping/HANDLING costs
  • Labor logistics
  • Sustainability of the business 
  • Value added – ice cream, cheese, ferments
    • Costs for: Packaging, dry ice etc.
    • Need high margins or charge a processing/shipping cost in order to be worthwhile
  • Might not need it after this pandemic 
  • Think about pick-up location!

Chapters

2:36 Why is an online store a good fit for you?

5:07 Pricing for delivery

7:05 Will customers stay online after COVID 19?

10:45 Considerations for long term online sales use

13:13 How to keep customers on this new service

15:23 Negatives to going online.

18:48 How do you get into remote markets?

23:56 Online competition or advantage? 

Contact: 

Listen to this Episode

Finding Market Streams in Rural Vermont: EP22

The Ag Engineering podcast is a conversation with small scale fruit and vegetable farmers to discuss tools, tips or techniques to improve the sustainability of your farm. In this episode, we visit with Evan Perkins and Heidi Choate of Small Axe Farm (https://smallaxefarm.com) to talk about how they built up their customers and markets on their no-till, hillside farm.

Learn something from the show? Let me know or share feedback here! https://forms.gle/fDraaXhRUtYfBchb6

Show Notes/Chapters

1:50 How did you get started selling vegetables?

“We had a wheelbarrow, a rake, and a 5 gallon bucket.”

Evan Perkins

8:35 You don’t need a perfect plot of land to farm

10:17 Selling produce in a competitive marketplace

14:35 Product offerings

16:34 Branding to make a difference

17:04 Plastic bags

20:17 Putting in the effort to support small orders

22:16 Where do you find your motivation?

  • Necessity 
  • Adding a label tripled their sales right away
  • Creative branding eg: “Snacking Cukes”
  • Trial and error

“We are more path people than goal people” 

Evan Perkins

Website: https://smallaxefarm.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/smallaxefarm/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/smallaxefarmvermont/?hl=en

Listen to this Episode