There are a number of ways that people come to volunteer with the Seed Co-operative:
- we have occasional organised work parties to undertake specific tasks that are much more fun to do in a gang which we promote on our events calendar
- WWOOFing (World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms) is a great way to volunteer on organic and biodynamic farms. We are currently looking for WWOOFers in 2017. Please see the WWOOF web site for details and to apply through the formal WWOOF process.
- we are always interested to hear from local people who are interested in volunteering for whole or half days, particularly if it can be a regular thing, please contact us directly to discuss.
In the normal course of events our annual work programme involves plant raising, field preparation and direct seed sowing in the spring, tending the growing plants over the summer, harvesting and processing seed in the autumn, and packing and dealing with orders in the winter, as people replenish their seed stock for the coming season. This is somewhat simplified, but there is never a quiet time.
As well as the vegetable, flower and herb growing we also have to manage our rotation system to sustain fertility in our soils. We have help in this from our chickens and sheep. The sheep also help us to manage the vegetation around our glasshouses. There is also maintenance work around the glasshouses, fencing work, building maintenance and general land work.
At the moment we are in a conversion process to be able to certify our seed as, first, organic after two years and then biodynamic after another year. This means that we are only doing a limited amount of growing here at present but that doesn’t mean we get to take it easy. There is a lot of clearing of rubbish left behind by previous owners and maintenance of buildings to get them in good order. We will have trees and hedges to plant come the autumn and winter. We will also have indoor work processing and packing seed. Although we can’t grow certified seed here we can process seed produced by our network of growers.