Flower Farmer-Florist Apprenticeship at Tanglebloom 

Vermont flower farmer
 
 

Farmer-Florist apprenticeship 2018

Our apprentices gain first-hand knowledge of the flower farmer-florist trade by immersing themselves in the daily and seasonal rhythms of our boutique flower farm business. Tanglebloom’s focus is on small-scale, high intensity growing using sustainable methods. We market our flowers through a popular flower CSA, retail, wholesale, farmstand, and a small number of weddings/events. The focus of the 2018 apprenticeship will be on farming, interspersed with a small amount of basic introductory floral design.

DESCRIPTION

The apprenticeship runs May through October, giving participants experience for a little more than a complete growing season (zone 5a). Tasks and education may include but are not limited to:

  • seed starting
  • transplanting
  • propagation
  • soil amending
  • installation of growing implements (weed barrier, support netting, hoops, frost cloth)
  • erection of season extension implements (low tunnel)
  • high tunnel (unheated greenhouse) production 
  • weed suppression strategies
  • irrigation
  • harvesting: proper stage for variety & market 
  • sorting/grading product
  • prepare product for various sales outlets (wholesale, retail, events, CSA)
  • market bouquets and small amount of basic flower arranging
  • CSA model
  • small neighborhood farm stand
  • shipping
  • cleanliness and sanitization 
  • fertilization 
  • monitor and treat for pests and disease
  • occasional communication with clients, partners, customers
  • possibly assist with wedding/event work 
  • occasional other farm and homestead tasks such as: fowl flock maintenance, kitchen garden, agritourism, general cleaning and organization
  • other duties as assigned
  • other duties based on skill, experience, and interest may be available

QUALIFICATIONS + OVERVIEW

Participants must be in very good physical shape, and be able to bend and squat repeatedly over long periods of time. Lifting up to 50 lbs. (straw bales, feed bags, crates) required. You must be able to work safely with a number of hand tools. Apprentices must be able to work efficiently and with a sense of urgency, sometimes in adverse weather. Farm work can at times be repetitive and strenuous. The ability to maintain a positive attitude is very important. 

You will often be working alone, after receiving a demonstration and task list for the day. You must be self-motivated with the ability to stay on task and work efficiently with minimal supervision. You will also occasionally work in small groups with the owners, volunteers, and event staff. 

Preference will be giving to those with farming, gardening, landscaping, or other relevant experience. 

This opportunity is largely focused on flower farming, and not floral design and will be mostly manual in nature. You will have the opportunity to assist with some basic flower arranging including market bouquets, but this will not be the focus. While you may assist with event preparations, there is typically not time for formal demonstration and instruction. We’ll be happy to recommend resources for further design study, and you will have the opportunity to practice arranging in your spare time. 

COMPENSATION + BENEFITS

  • Apprentices work on the farm 20 to 30 hours per week (seasonal variation) in exchange for housing & food while learning the farmer-florist trade. 
  • Small monthly stipend
  • 5 days vacation (must be scheduled in advance)
  • Access to relevant books, trade publications, product catalogs, etc. for further learning
  • Opportunity to discuss and ask questions about the business of flower farming with owners (usually 2-4 scheduled times per month)
  • Opportunity to practice floral arranging during free time with farm flowers

LIVING AT TANGLEBLOOM

Housing includes a small bedroom in our home with its own private entrance. Shared bathroom. There is supplemental heat but no air conditioning.

Wi-fi and landline telephone access included. Cell coverage typically spotty and varies with carrier. 

We ask that you keep your personal space clean, as well as help to keep the common areas clean. Farming does not leave a lot of time for indoor chores during the growing season, so please shed your shoes at the door, take care of your dishes, etc. to help keep things reasonably clean for as long as possible. 

Meal structure tends to vary with the season and folks present. Often breakfast and lunch will be on your own, with dinner together 4-5 nights per week. We eat a little bit of everything including lots of fresh eggs and veggies from our kitchen garden, but welcome vegetarian diets. Sorry, we’re unable to accommodate gluten-free or vegan diets at this time.

A weekly schedule will be followed most of the time. Typically you will work 4-5 days per week, including some weekends. You will almost always have Sunday off. Weekend work, when needed, typically requires only a few hours of work on Saturday. 

We have a toddler and a dog, cats, and small flock of ducks.

Private transportation required due to our rural location. 

No smoking allowed anywhere on the property.

Sorry, we cannot accommodate pets, children, or partners. Occasional overnight guests may be allowed with prior permission. 

LOCATION + AREA

Our farm is located in south-eastern Vermont, in the tiny town of Brookline (population 450). We’re 20 minutes north of the artsy town of Brattleboro, 2 hours from  Burlington,  2.5 hours from Boston, and 3.5 hours from NYC. Brattleboro is the cultural center offering art galleries, events, breweries, ecclectic eateries, boutiques, recreation, and a movie theatre. The closest small town is the historic village of Newfane (5 minutes by car) which has a yoga studio, general store, library, farm stand, and a few dining options. 

The area has many opportunities for outdoor recreation including hiking, river floats and paddles, and rural road biking.

QUESTIONS?

Please let us know: info@tanglebloom.com

TO APPLY

Please complete the application below by February 28, 2018.

We will schedule phone and/or video chat interviews with qualified candidates, who will then be asked to submit 3 references. The selected apprentice will be notified by March 15, 2018. 

Thank you for your interest. We look forward to receiving your application!

 

Application

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