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165. The Farmer’s Office | Julia Shanks | Cambridge Massachusetts
9th January 2017 • GREEN Organic Garden Podcast • Jackie Marie Beyer
00:00:00 00:58:00

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The Farmer’s Office

One of the things my guests have talked about a lot is effective bookkeeping and record keeping whether your a small backyard gardener or a busy market farmer. Today Julia Shanks is going to share her knowledge of business, farming, cooking and restaurants, her books and her new course on how to be the most effective producer you can be and how to enjoy growing a successful garden.

Julia Shanks Author of the The Farmer’s Office: Tools, Tips and Templates to Successfully Manage a Growing Farm Business is here today to share her brilliance and talk about her new course the Farmer’s Edge starting January 11th, 2017!



Let’s Get to the Root of Things

Which activity is your least favorite activity to do in the garden.

No, I love it all. I can’t get into the garden enough. I love weeding in the morning with my coffee I find it meditative . . .

What is your favorite activity to do in the garden.

Probably, I do enjoy the weeding I get the weeds in the thread stage and I get to see the clean beds….

just sitting and pondering the different cycles

vegetables behind

watching the vegetables..

What is the best gardening advice you have  ever received?

Well, I’m thinking the most recent gardening advice

there’s a dfference between decomposing vegetables and compost

my compost system isn’t very good, that’s

I tried that. as long as it’s composting well, if the worms the die… the compost gets really stinky, I have a lot of worms in my soil, I feel like I’m vermi-composting, it’s aerated,

You have to drill al to of holes, holes in the bottom of the bin… as you put

not gonna get the same air s

A favorite tool that you like to use? If you had to move and could only take one tool with you what would it be.

I don’t have a lot of tools, I need my hose to water, I just got drip irrigation

I have a trowel, a

Well, I just got the drip irrigation hoses, I bought them at home depot, I just snaked them around the garden… water doesn’t

plant everything pretty darn close

small garden, 100-200 feet was enough…

especially with the drought, on the

be careful

concentrate the water where you want it, turn it on when you need to soak the water …

A favorite recipe you like to cook from the garden?

I do make that kale salad regularly

the other dish

  • I saute with garlic raisins
  • curry powder
  • romesco sauce
  • tomato
  • pepper sauce

that’s a favorite

I wrote this book with my friend Brett, the farmer in Maryland

he has a dish … for potato

December dishes because it’s cold

  • sauted greens with potatoes
  • scallions
  • simple

good curry recipes

I like the coconut curry with chili paste

restorative and creamy and rich


The Cookbook is called the 

the Farmer's Market Cookbook

The Farmers Market Cookbook: The Ultimate Guide to Enjoying Fresh, Local, Seasonal Produce

A favorite internet resource?


this is gonna be really self serving but my website

I have a lot of resources

I’ve been writing lots of articles

lots of tools and tips


find a cash flow

lots of excel templates




food and ag

links to the


A favorite reading material-book, mag, blog/website etc you can recommend?

I gotta say I do enjoy growing for market

guilty pleasure is Modern Farmer

I don’t think anyone

written who want to be farmer…

I enjoy it… good magazine…

If you have a business to you have any advice for our listeners about how to sell extra produce or get started in the industry?

I would say, track your costs… as much as you can… that’s the only way you are going to figure out what works

if you do’t know how much you are growing…

if you’re gonna make that kind of financial investment

Final question- if there was one change you would like to see to create a greener world what would it be? For example is there a charity or organization your passionate about or a project you would like to see put into action. What do you feel is the most crucial issue facing our planet in regards to the environment either in your local area or on a national or global scale?

What I am thinking about right now is how can we support small farmers to be sustainable, they are the ones thinking about our soil


the carrot project

providing business

that’s what I’m thinking

in California

local dept of ags

supporting local farmers …

Do u have an inspiration tip or quote to help motivate our listeners to reach into that dirt and start their own garden?

follow your passion but be realistic

if you love gardening

How do we connect with you?


They can go to my website

the Farmer's Market Cookbook

The Farmers Market Cookbook: The Ultimate Guide to Enjoying Fresh, Local, Seasonal Produce

cookbook and the business class

Farmer's Office book

The Farmer’s Office: Tools, Tips and Templates to Successfully Manage a Growing Farm Business 

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