Hi, my name is Erica and I’m a Forest Hill, MD native. I graduated from Towson University in 2012 with a degree in environmental science and have been trying to find my calling ever since. After growing organic vegetables as an intern at the Rodale Institute and visiting many local farms I decided to start a small CSA, which I ran for 3 seasons. I realized that while farming is incredibly important work, I wasn’t cut out to be a farmer! My CSA was a part-time project and supported about 4 local families, while I worked part-time and attended school part-time. A farmer can work 70 hours a week or more in the height of the growing season, most of that time spent outside in whatever weather mother nature brings. Anyone willing to do this to bring nutritious food to your family deserves more respect than they often get.
If I had an amazing work ethic, boundless physical stamina, tolerance for weather extremes, patience with mosquitoes and other bugs that bite, and perseverance in the face of all the obstacles to making a living growing food for others, I would be a farmer.
I and many others may not have what it takes to be a farmer, but we can definitely support the essential work they do. Shop at Farmers’ Markets, consider joining a CSA, seek out local farmers to buy from, encourage your child’s school to take field trips to farms, and just go talk to a farmer and ask questions!