Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Vets and farming: A natural

Delaware Valley College in Doylestown has teamed up with the Rodale Institute in Kutztown on the Veteran Organic Farming Program, a 3-semester, 36-credit program that combines classroom study on all aspects of organic farming and hands-on work on the land at DelVal, Rodale's 333-acre farm, and other farms in the area. I visited DelVal this week and came away with the feeling that these students - one Marine, and one each from the Marine Corps and Coast Guard - have a bright and interesting future ahead of them. (Consider that the average age of American farmers is 57 and that the organic food segment of the market is exploding.) Here, Ian Woods is checking on some seedlings growing in a DelVal greenhouse. Ian is the Coast Guard vet. He spent 23 years in emergency management, which includes oil spills and other disasters. "I needed to change careers for my sanity and my health," he says. "The culture we're in .. everything's an emergency. You can't catch a break"

Vets and farming: A natural

Delaware Valley College in Doylestown has teamed up with the Rodale Institute in Kutztown on the Veteran Organic Farming Program, a 3-semester, 36-credit program that combines classroom study on all aspects of organic farming and hands-on work on the land at DelVal, Rodale's 333-acre farm, and other farms in the area. I visited DelVal this week and came away with the feeling that these students - one Marine, and one each from the Marine Corps and Coast Guard - have a bright and interesting future ahead of them. (Consider that the average age of American farmers is 57 and that the organic food segment of the market is exploding.) Here, Ian Woods is checking on some seedlings growing in a DelVal greenhouse. Ian is the Coast Guard vet. He spent 23 years in emergency management, which includes oil spills and other disasters. "I needed to change careers for my sanity and my health," he says. "The culture we're in .. everything's an emergency. You can't catch a break"

Except here in the greenhouse. "This is it," he says. 

Inquirer Staff Writer
About this blog
Ginny Smith, a Philadelphia native, joined the Inquirer at 1985. After stints as both reporter and editor in the city and suburbs, she’s been happily writing – and learning - about gardening full time since 2006. She’s won two silver medals of achievement from the national Garden Writers Association and in 2011, Bartram’s Garden honored her with its Green Exemplar award for her stories about “the region’s deeply rooted horticultural history, cultural attractions and bountiful gardens.” She plays in her own – mostly - bountiful garden in East Falls. Reach Virginia A. at vsmith@phillynews.com .

Virginia A. Smith Inquirer Staff Writer
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