We came so close to meeting sharer Nina Kornstein’s generous Greenhouse Heater Fund challenge that she’s extended it another week. Be one of 100 new donors (or add to an existing donation) by Friday, December 15 at 5 pm, and Nina will add $2,500 to our fund. If each of us donates a small amount, we’ll be able to meet our $6,000 goal and buy our greenhouse heater. 

As an organization, we’ve been talking for the past two years about how to diversify our revenue to ensure the long-term sustainability of Stearns Farm and decrease the stress on our tiny 1.8 acres of beautiful soil. A high-efficiency greenhouse heater is an important infrastructure investment to help us achieve these goals. 

Heated greenhouses are standard in small farms, but we don’t have one. After careful consideration, we have decided to install a high-efficiency greenhouse heater before the 2018 growing season.

A high-efficiency greenhouse heater will allow Stearns Farm to:

  • Get into the propagation greenhouse a full month later than we currently do, freeing up the farmers to do other important work in late winter and early spring.
  • Grow healthier starts. The heater is typically used only between early March and mid-May, to keep the greenhouse temperatures above freezing and, later, to keep tomatoes and other nightshades at temperatures above 50 degrees. This minimal use of fuel can have a huge positive impact on the health of our starts.
  • Increase the farmers’ quality of life. Have you ever lost several nights of sleep because you are miles away and worried about your tomato seedlings freezing because it is late April and 15 degrees outside? It’s not fun!
  • Enable us to grow many more, and higher quality plants that we can sell in an expanded May Plant Sale and Spring Celebration! This is a critical part of the plan to diversify our revenue without stressing the land. We are planning a fun weekend event around the plant sale, to which we can invite the broader community. (Stay tuned for details!)

We are asking you, our community members, to contribute what you can to our Greenhouse Fund. Every gift, of every size, makes a difference! Help us earn our $2,500 match by giving now, and play an important part in ensuring Stearns Farm’s future.

Questions? Mel (farmer@stearnsfarmcsa.org) has answers.

We’re grateful for your support!