Farm Apprenticeships

Buttermilk Falls CSA in Osceola, WI is seeking two apprentice farmers or interns for immediately through the end of October, the end of the CSA garden season.  As a garden volunteer, you will experience CSA farming on a beautiful member-supported, therapeutic community farm. The program is tailored to individuals who are not daunted by hard work and are motivated by being part of the inner workings of this special project. This opportunity is especially useful for those looking to own/operate their own farm someday.

About the Farm& Community

Buttermilk Falls CSA is a project of Philadelphia Community Farm, a non-profit since 1989. Our CSA grows for about 80 households from our to-be-certified biodynamic farm in the St. Croix River Valley of western Wisconsin. We do not use any chemicals or synthetic substances on our fields, and practice an ideology which acknowledges the farm as a whole organism. 

Philadelphia Community Farm, an elder in the midwestern CSA movement and leader in farm-based education in the region, consists of 68-acres developed for the farm, residential living and retreat center, alongside 245-acre Buffalo Skull in conservation managed through another non-profit, Standing Cedars Land Conservancy.

Currently, two full-time year round co-workers, an artist-in-residence, and a senior citizen with special needs live at Philadelphia Community Farm year round. We share a midday and evening meal, weekly meetings, and various workshops, celebrations. We enjoy social time together playing music by the campfire, swimming and canoeing in the St. Croix River, and are active in the arts and social justice movements in Minneapolis/St. Paul. We are a vibrant community in a sacred setting, replete with restored native prairie, forest, an expanding barnyard, and a fresh water spring and waterfall along the limestone cliffs of Buttermilk Creek leading to the St. Croix River. 

Program Details

Apprentice farmers live onsite and work with Buttermilk’s lead farmer, Carter Beck. 

Internships and Apprenticeships include:

  • Housing in a large community farmhouse, or unique caravan. Friends and/or couples are especially welcome!
  • Communal bathroom/shower and laundry
  • Home-cooked farm meals 2x/day and access to kitchen and pantry for breakfast/weekends
  • WI-FI in Farmhouse
  • Spending cash of $200 per month with creative ways to earn more such as selling farm products or offering workshops. 
  • Farmer training
  • A natural environment that contains hiking/running trails, prairie, waterfall, spring, sacred beauty, fresh air, clean water, and nutritious food. 
  • Free or reduced classes whenever available at Buttermilk Folk School
  • Engagement in a therapeutic community lifestyle that includes meaningful work, support for personal development, and a socially conscious community committed to collective liberation. 

Skills You Can expect to Gain

  • Planning: Spring arrival will allow you the opportunity to work side-by-side with the farmer to plan garden rotations, field configurations, seed orders etc.
  • Greenhouse Propagation: Seeding, record keeping, seedling care and troubleshooting, greenhouse organization, composting
  • Field work: irrigation systems, seeding, transplanting, weeding, thinning, mulching, tractor skills, frost protection, composting, “farmer intuition” and observation analysis, record keeping, heat/cold tolerance, biodynamic preparations
  • CSA management: The following will be supplemental to the tasks of the onsite CSA Manager Tracking of CSA data, record keeping, communications, marketing, community building, delivery logistics 
  • Life skills: Communal living in a multi-ability, multi-age household, healthy communication, cooking, hearth-keeping, responsibility, empowerment, work ethic
  • Animals: May be included DOI, mostly in the context of their role on a biodynamic farm

Ideal Candidates

We seek people with a sincere interest in sustainable agriculture. The work is undoubtedly demanding on physical, mental and emotional levels, and is also incredibly rewarding for those willing to meet the challenge. A genuine commitment to the farming lifestyle over time and all of the joys and hardships that go along with it will be an invaluable asset to Buttermilk apprentices. We will consider all applicants, and will favor those available for the full-term, those with some farming experience.

Interpersonal attributes required for this position: 

  • An open mind and an open heart toward self expression. 
  • Ability to communicate openly and honestly about personal needs and wishes. 
  • Willingness to engage in self reflection on internal and external levels.
  • Healthy relationship to a lifestyle unencumbered by substance use. 
  • Willing to help co-create and cultivate a healthy social atmosphere.
  • Strong health on all levels. 
  • Comfortable with heavy lifting, good manual dexterity and multi-limb coordination while using tools and small machines.
  • Experience not required, but be eager for a hard-working lifestyle of service.
  • A passion for learning sustainable agricultural methods in a community farm environment.
  • Demonstrate a high degree of self-motivation and initiative with the willingness to take direction and the drive to complete tasks in a timely manner.
  • Commitment to our collective liberation, new social forms and social justice. 

Your Steadfast Leader

 Carter Beck

Carter Beck

In many ways, Carter epitomizes the archetypal Midwest farmer of Scandinavian descent. He is sturdy, resilient, patient and a man of few words. He works deliberately on the land from sun up until sun down, in hopes of serving his members and creating a space where children and families can connect to the land and enjoy nature. Apprentices will learn best from this farmer through astute observation and inquiry. If you wish to learn while getting your hands dirty, in an outdoor classroom, this experienced farmer will be a good match. If, upon reading and reflecting upon everything above, you find your interest piqued, please send a letter of interest and your resume to: Buttermilk Falls CSA, P.O. Box 668, Osceola WI 54020 or email farm@buttermilkcsa.com

To begin the application process please fill out the questionnaire below.

Please submit the following questionnaire: 

Name *
Name
If applying alongside a friend or partner, please enter their name here. They should fill this form as well and list you as their co-applicant.
please provide any details about the conditions under which you can or cannot share a room.
 Almo the Great Pyrenees, Carter the Farmer, and Medha the CSA Manager. Sept 2017

Almo the Great Pyrenees, Carter the Farmer, and Medha the CSA Manager. Sept 2017

Farm Internships 2017

The Buttermilk CSA 'Farmily' of summer 2014