Jean-Paul Courtens is most famous for being the founder and owner of Roxbury Farm in New York’s Hudson Valley. He operated Roxbury Farm with his farming partner, Jody Bolluyt, from 1990 through about 2015, when he started work with the Hudson Valley Farm Hub to create and then to run a professional farmer training program, where he is now the Associate Director for Farm Training.
Roxbury Farm is a 245-acre integrated farming operation, with a hundred acres dedicated to vegetable production for a thousand-member CSA. Jean-Paul shares the details of Roxbury’s green manure rotation, and the details how they use unique crops, careful scheduling, and a summer-fallow period to clean the fields of weeds and pathogens, allowing for more efficient field operations. We also discuss the details of the semi-permanent bed system that complements the soil building cover cropping program.
Jean-Paul’s success as a farmer and his distinctive leadership builds upon the recognition of his skills as a teacher and mentor on organic practices, land stewardship, whole farm planning, and farm business development, and we discuss how he brings this to bear in the ProFarmer training program at the Hudson Valley Farm Hub.
Jean-Paul also shares some of the techniques used at Roxbury Farm to train employees and establish expectations, as well as to help people avoid mistakes and misunderstandings.
Perennial support for the Farmer to Farmer Podcast is generously provided by Vermont Compost Company and BCS America.
Pictures, show links, and more at www.farmertofarmerpodcast.com/episodes/courtens.