Minutes -Meeting of Thursday, June 26, 2008 at home of Fellis Jordan.
Attending: Jonathan Parizer, Greg Melville, Bob Giddings, Fellis Jordan, Jeff Rapoport and Kimberly Stoner
Meeting called to order at 7:15 PM by President Kimberly Stoner
Fellis passed around an article on CSA about scarcity of local crops and CSA memberships.
Kim reported on interactions with Town on the lease agreement. Ben Alderton and Jill Casertano both had input on the lease agreement. Questions included:
1) making and importing of compost
2) indemnification of the town for all liabilities
3) Michael Milone will be away until July 6th
The consensus was that the arrangements were satisfactory. Kim will clarify start date of July 1 with Arnett Talbot and Suzanne Simone. Jill and Fellis will be away until July 6th.
Kim spoke Elizabeth Esty who said that in the future, open space monies will be available for management of open land as well as acquisition. She also spoke with Erin O’Hare, Land Use Planner for Wallingford who said that she is interested in our walking tour. Mary Mushinsky, Mary Heffernan and two others from the Environment Commission of Wallingford are interested in a tour of Bob G.’s wildflowers.
Jill is working on this with Farm Family. The rate will be based total sales and is expected to be about $500. A liability waiver will need to be signed and filed for all FOBK members and visitors to the physical premises. We are basing our waiver on Walter Greist’s Mill River CSA. Ben Suggested contacting Cheshire sports clubs and other organizations to see a copy of their waiver. Jonathan Parizer was quoted about $5,000 for general liability insurance, board liability and auto insurance. Jeff will call Soul Friends and Greg will call Jean Garner to see if they have a Liability Waiver that we could see as an example.
2006 & 2007 Connecticut Corporate Tax Returns and Federal Tax Returns have been filed. No Federal tax was due. $640 in CT tax was due and paid along with the accountant’s at-cost fee of $76 leaving a balance in the checking account of $7.96. The balance in the Community Foundation for Greater New Haven is $1,000 and there is one check for $50 that has not yet been deposited. Kim will speak to Angel Fernandez about details of a fundraising plan for the CFGNH account so that we will be able to draw out funds and keep the account open.
Soil Amendments: Marlene McKenzie reported to Kim that Greencycle of Wallingford will deliver 7 yards of certified organic compost to Boulder Knoll at a charge of $320. Fellis mentioned that she recalled Michael Milone offering the towns assistance with soil amendments. Kim recalled that this offer was definite for lime only, and the availability of compost was unclear. Fellis will talk to Arnett about our needs for lime and compost to determine if the Town will be able to help out. The soil tests indicate a ph of 4.8 and 350 lbs of lime will be needed for the 2,000 square feet that we plan to cultivate. If we need to purchase lime, Bob G. said that he would pick up some at Greenbackers and that about 7 bags would be needed at approximately $20 per bag.
Procedures: Bob G. said that the land should be plowed first then limed and harrowed. This will keep the lime in the top 12 inches of soil. Bob is planning to run his tractor and harrow after John Casertano runs a plow on the land. One acre will be improved with hairy vetch or winter re and one acre will be mowed only. If we are to use the mowed grasses for mulch, then a sickle bar would be needed to cut rather than a mower which would pulverize and scatter the hay.
Kim will supply seed garlic for October planting
Kim will supply 30 basil plants for immediate planting
A strip of perennials will be planted by the road for beauty and PR value. These plants were donated by Al Mitlehner and are currently healed in at Fellis’ home.
Jeff will approach potential plant donors including to see what may be acquired. To include: Home Depot, Stop & Shop, Tower Farms, Cheshire Nursery, and Zentek Farms
Jill has some cover crop seed.
Kim recommends ordering more cover crop seed as needed from Greenbackers Agway in Meriden, Meriden Feed & Supply, Fedco, or Johnny’s Seed
Rye could be planted in mid September or later, but, Hairy Vetch must be planted by mid September.
Marketing: of produce was discussed. Bob suggested that there probably would not be enough of a crop this year to offer CSA memberships at $75, but, maybe a credit could be given on next year’s crop. Kim said that volunteers could work for a share. Fellis liked the idea of donating rather than selling the crop. It was agreed that the first year we would donate the crop to a food bank or other non profit and sell some at the Wallingford Farmers Market or to others, such as Jordan Caterers. Greg said that it would be good to sell the produce in Cheshire. Everyone felt that we should work towards having a Cheshire Farmers Market, in the long run, but that it is not a project for this year.
Fundraising was discussed briefly. Fellis and Jeff agreed to meet to draft a letter to FOBK members requesting renewal of dues. Kim said that we should plan an event such as a walking education tour in the fall to get people to the farm. Points of discussion would be organic gardening, composting, and wildlife. Discussion ensued about making it a Sunday “walk” preceded by a Saturday night dinner. A ride to the Wallingford property could also be included. Kim and Jeff said that they would draft a fundraising outline. Jeff and Fellis said that they would work at revising the mailing list. Fellis presented a page from a Red Rock Canyon preservation group that included some verbiage that could be useful in our publicity. Jeff agreed to draft a solicitation deck for corporate membership and sponsorship. Greg suggested that we send a thank you note to all renewing and new members including a DOAG Farm Map.