At Green Wagon Farm we practice by faith, with biodiversity our crop insurance. Every growing season is unique as we continuously adapt to changes in our weather, climate, and local food culture. As of 2016, we are certified organic by the OnMark Certification. We are always seeking to better uphold the integrity of the water, soil, air, and creatures under our care.
TOOLS & TECHNIQUES
Aside from careful observation and bicycle carts, we utilize a number of tools that increase the effectiveness of our work. We seed using a vacuum-powered EZ-seeder; we transplant by hand or with the help of our Paperpot Transplant System; we cultivate by tractor, flame weeder, and by hand, and we harvest primarily by hand, though sometimes with our handy bed lifter or Quick-Cut Green’s Harvester. We spin our greens in a repurposed washing machine and wash our roots in an AZS Rinse Conveyor. We extend our season on each end by planting in a half acre greenhouse, five hoophouses, four caterpillar tunnels, and numerous low tunnels, and we store our fall crops in insulated coolers through the winter.
We reduce pest-damage through careful seasonal rotation and exclude them by means of row cover. We are constantly on the look-out for signs of disease, which when necessary, we treat using OMRI-certified sprays to avoid devastation. Plant, fungal, or bacterial-based, these sprays target specific pests.
WATER & SOIL HEALTH
We water by overhead irrigation, which assists in the germination of some crops, reduces manual labor and plastic waste, and allows for cultivation by tractor. Our Water Reel handles the larger sections of watering, and we use drip tape on the plastic-mulch covered beds.
We test our soil twice per season, changing our tillage to fit the needs of the season and applying mineral supplements, manures, and compost to return nutrition and structure to the soil. We cover-crop extensively in lanes and between rows, between crop plantings, and overwinter to help with soil erosion.
We are a team at Green Wagon Farm--a year-round crew of about 10, which doubles at the season’s height. We relish our time working and celebrating together as we learn and discover ways to better serve our land and our community. We share the food we grow with members of our year-round CSA and the community at the Fulton Street Farmers Market, as well as with several farm-to-table restaurants and grocery stores around Grand Rapids.