Polly Shyka and Prentice Grassi raise five acres of vegetables and five acres of cover crops, plus broiler chickens, egg layers, and beef cattle, at Villageside Farm in Freedom, Maine. Polly and Prentice have been involved in farming for twenty years, and have been farming their land since 2001. Making a living for both of them on $200,000 in sales, they have worked hard to build a farm business that is an asset to their community.
We talk about the challenges of farming at the five-acre scale, and dig into the nuts and bolts of how they manage their vegetables in a three-years-on, three-years-off rotation with perennial cover crops. Polly and Prentice dish out plenty of details about how they manage the livestock and vegetable production together, and about the equipment and tools they use to manage their five acres of produce.
Polly and Prentice also dig into the numbers that drive their farm, and the hard work they’ve put in to balancing life and business. They share their strategies and philosophy for making the most of their interactions with customers, children, employees, and each other, and how they have worked to develop the human skills that support their farm and their family.
Perennial support for the Farmer to Farmer Podcast is generously provided by Vermont Compost Company and BCS America.
Pictures, show links, and more at farmertofarmerpodcast.com/episodes/villageside.