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Eric and Laura Pond own and operate 2 Pony Produce Co. We have 10 acres east of Lebanon, OR along the south Santiam river. We farm 2.5 acres of this. We are a family of four, two dogs, 4 cats and a horse.
We grow a wide range of vegetables including a small patch of asparagus, berries including blueberries, raspberry, blackberries, strawberries, table grapes, herbs and flowers for the food bank in our area and a couple of regular CSA members. We farm organically but are not certified yet. We use a 100’ permanent bed system, drip irrigation, overhead irrigation and try to minimally till, we have a BCS walk-behind tractor with a full range of attachments and a small 35 hp tractor. We cover crop and use silage tarps to help manage weeds and build soils. 4 cold tunnels are used for season extension.
Eric has been farming for 33 seasons and Laura for 26 of those, from large operations of 7500 acres in berries and hazelnuts to our 2.5 acre small farm project. We started our farm in 2017 as a way to give back to our community good produce that is always available. We value good food and feeding those around us. Our goal is to continue to work on efficiency in our farming system and build out a year-round program so we can provide more opportunities for others to have a meaningful career in farming.
Because we are a small farm, the applicant would be included in all aspects of farming and would have opportunity to learn, seeding, planting, weeding, cultivation, limited equipment operation, irrigation, pest and disease mitigation and control, harvesting, packing delivery, small farm food safety, and some interaction with clients. More specifically, applicants will learn the seeding/planting, production, harvest and packing of organic vegetables, berries, grapes and herbs.
The applicant will be paid minimum wage up to $15.00 per hour depending on experience. Free vegetables and berries as they are available from the farm.
An Apprenticeship at 2 pony produce co is part of Rogue Farm Corps’ beginning farmer training program. Hands-on field training at the Host Farm is complemented by a series of classes, farm tours, discussions, and networking events organized by Rogue Farm Corps.
Apprentices join other beginning farmers for an Educational Event Series facilitated by Rogue Farm Corps.
The satellite farm event series includes:
24 classes focused on foundational sustainable agriculture concepts, skills, and knowledge and the food system.
4-6 farm tours which showcase practical skills and individual farmers’ stories, as well as provide insight into diverse production and marketing systems. Mainly via 3 weekend intensives.
3-5 discussion circles with topics including Food Justice / Food Sovereignty, and Next Steps for Beginning Farmers.
RFC strives to make all educational events inclusive and welcoming to people from all backgrounds and identities. Classes, tours, and discussions are led by Rogue Farm Corps staff, agricultural professionals, and expert farmers. Scholarships are available.