this has been tempting me for the last month or so: http://www.justfood.org/farmschoolnyc. the deadline to apply was a week ago and i didn’t, so obviously, i’m not matriculating with the first classes, but i’m still not sure whether i’m relieved or sorry that i missed the deadline. on the one hand, the concept of a training program specifically for urban farmers in NYC is wicked appealing. books about farming, apprenticeships with farmers, blogs by farmers – all these things are, for the most part, written by rural farmers and/or focused on more traditional agricultural methods best suited for more land that i’ve got even in my (ginormous for NYC) brooklyn backyard.
i had fantasies about learning urban farming concepts tailored to my environment, discussing tips and techniques from people who’ve been working these ideas out, graduating with the first class of fellow farmers, and joining a community of people trying to build productive, sustainable urban farms without having to give up the conveniences of my city life (or day job). but the cost of the two-year program is not insignificant and the program is in its pilot year. farmer woob is not wrong when she suggests that there’s no reason to rush into registering from something that’s expensive, in its early days, and may not teach me anything i can’t learn myself by just doing it. so, i’m holding off for now, but i’m going to be keeping an eye on the program to see how it goes. i can always sign up next year, right?