Field Assistant/Crew Lead


Company: Mahonia Gardens
Location: Sisters, OR
Compensation: $15-$17 DOE
Employment Type: Part-Time
Job Categories: Agriculture
Region: Central
Date Posted: October 14, 2021

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Mahonia Gardens is a one-acre market garden operating in Sisters, Oregon, dedicated to growing quality produce. We use only organic practices. We focus on soil health, biodiversity, and a sustainable lifestyle for the humans involved. We provide food to Sisters and Bend. Labor on the farm is done by hand, using ergonomic hand tools including broadforks, wheel hoe, and digging forks to create and maintain beds. While we are not certified organic, we use absolutely no harmful chemicals in our production—no pesticides, herbicides, chemical fertilizers, etc.

We primarily sell produce through our farm stand, “The Stand”, which is located at our home in downtown Sisters. The farm is on leased land about ½ mile from our home and farm stand. Our crop plan is based around sales at The Stand. We also sell wholesale through retailer Central Oregon Locavore and distributor Agricultural Connections.

Mahonia Gardens was founded in 2013 by us, Carys Wilkins and Benji Nagel. For the 2021 season we had one part time employee, two full-time interns through Rogue Farm Corps, and one summer intern. Our part-time employee was with us for three seasons and recently moved to Bellingham to start her own farm.

In November 2021, we will be having our second baby. Benji will assume the role as primary farm manager while Carys will be on farm as much as possible amid caretaking the kiddos. We are looking for a responsible employee that can understand the needs of parents with young children and take on leadership when neither of us are present.

Job Title: Field Assistant/Crew Lead

  • Job Hours: 36 hours/week, April through October
    • Possible ~20 hours per week in March, depending on weather
    • Monday – Thursday @ 8 hrs. per day, Friday @ 4 hours
      Generally, 8 hours/day Monday-Thursday; 4 hours Friday

Compensation: $15-$17/hour DOE, 36 hours/week

  • Weekly vegetables with seasonal variability
  • Discounted non-Mahonia products from our farm stand (honey, flour, veggies from other farms, etc)
  • $100/month self-care bonus

As a Field Assistant/Crew lead we are looking for a person who:

  • has had at least one full season of experience on a small-medium sized farm.
  • can identify most market vegetables and has experience planting/harvesting/cooking with them.
  • knows they enjoy the sometimes-tedious day-to-day labor of farm work and has a good attitude while doing it.
  • cares about living a local-food lifestyle, who wants to eat with the seasons, and is passionate about food.
  • will assume leadership with our interns if both of us are unavailable.
  • is motivating to others.
  • is responsible and respectful to the people around them.
  • is not bossy or entitled, just helpful.
  • knows how to listen and speak graciously with others.
  • Practices communication and can confront conflict

This job will entail a wide variety of tasks, including but not limited to:

  • Prepping, planting, seeding and weeding farm beds
  • Harvesting, washing and packing all crops (this is the majority of our work from May through September).
  • Lead harvest, farm walks and other activities when Carys and Benji are not present
  • Delivering produce to our farm stand, and sometimes to wholesale customers in Bend
  • Occasionally stocking, cleaning and maintaining our farm stand.
  • General organizing, cleaning, maintenance of our farm areas

Applicant must have the ability to:

  • Follow directions as a farm hand- learn our style of farming while respectfully adding new ideas (observe first, make changes later).
  • Manage one’s time and efficiency- we expect you to lead the charge, to show up and start working without being told, and to motivate the crew.
  • Use typical farming tools with adequate body awareness.
  • Drive a truck (have a legal drivers license).

This position requires typical physical demands for farm labor, such as walking, standing, reaching, stooping, squatting, lifting up to 50 lbs. and working outdoors in cold, hot, wet, or smoky conditions on uneven surfaces.

Send Resume and Cover Letter to: MahoniaGardens@gmail.com
(please expect up to a week for a response, it is still our busy season!)
Please read our website, mahoniagardens.com, to get a more in depth idea of our farm and what we do.

We are hoping to meet each applicant for an on-farm working interview.

Thank you for your interest,

Carys and Benji
Mahonia Gardens

mahoniagardens@gmail.com