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4496 Flat River Rd
Greene, RI, 02827
United States

About

Scratch Farm

Founded in 2005, Scratch Farm is a small-scale vegetable, berry, flower, and culinary herb farm located 9 miles west of Providence, in Cranston, at Urban Edge Farm. We do not use any pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, or chemical fertilizers. We hope to grow as much food as possible on our two acres while simultaneously taking care of the soil, ourselves, our customers, and our friends. We sell primarily through our 100 member CSA, but also to restaurants through Little City Growers.

The Farmers

Scratch Farm is run by Ben Torpey with the help of two full-time apprentices, a half dozen work shares and many volunteers. Ben has been growing vegetables full time since 2005, and at Scratch Farm since 2012. Katie Miller, the long-time soul and steward of Scratch Farm, is on sabbatical for the 2015 season to travel the country learning about seed breeding.

What’s a CSA?

CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture. It is a way for farms to sell directly to customers. Each CSA farm organizes their CSA a little differently, but most CSAs ask customers to pay ahead of time for a weekly share of the harvest. At Scratch, this model allows us to do all of our marketing in the winter when we have time, and ensures that we are able to sell all of our produce, because it is already sold. This frees us up to focus on what we love and are good at...farming! Paying up front if you are able is great; it allows us more capital for bigger expenses in the winter and early spring when larger conventional farms are taking out bank loans.

When you join our CSA, you become a shareholder in the farm for a season. Your membership directly supports the farm’s operation and entitles you to a weekly share of our produce. As a CSA member, you also ensure the livelihood of small-scale organic farming in Rhode Island and actively support a local economy that promotes both agricultural and economic sustainability.

Joining the CSA

Our CSA members pay on a sliding scale in order to make it affordable to as many people as possible. To join we ask members to pay a $50 deposit, then pay the rest in at most two installments, one at the first CSA pickup, the last half-way through the season.

The Breakdown

The CSA season lasts twenty-five weeks, from June 9th through November 24th. Full shares (for 3-4 adults) are available on a sliding scale from $600-$850. Half shares (for one or two people) are available for $350-$600. We also offer additional shares of meat, cheese, eggs, pickles, and fruit, details are on our member contract. By using a sliding scale we hope to attract customers who otherwise would not be able to afford a share and may never be exposed to the delights of directly supporting a small farm. If you have the ability to pay the maximum amount please do, you will be directly subsidizing low income shares.

The Shares

Each week you will receive a portion of all that’s ripe and ready in our fields. Due to the nature of the growing season, shares will be lighter in the spring and heavier in summer and fall. While content will vary from June to November, we estimate we’ll have 7-11 different items each week, with plenty of weekly favorites and some delectable rarities. Produce pickup will be Monday afternoons, 4-7 pm, in the Armory neighborhood of Providence at 186 Carpenter St.

Sample Shares:

 June:

  • Beets
  • Peas
  •  Salad Mix
  •  Cooking Greens
  •  Herb bunch
  •  Radish or Scallions
  •  Garlic Scapes

 

 

Visit us on Facebook, one of our CSA members posted pictures of

her half share for many of the weeks of last summers share

How to pay for your CSA using SNAP Benefits

We accept food stamp payments for the CSA through Farm Fresh RI.  We don't

have a way to accept payments at the CSA pickup, so, to make CSA payments

you can go to one of the farmers markets that Farm Fresh runs, and make

payments with them.  They will give you coins that you can then bring to us. You

can make payments on your own schedule, but we ask that payments are made

throughout the season, rather than all at the end.  Here is a list of markets where

you can make payments:

The Winter Farmers Market at Hope Artiste Village

1005 Main St., Pawtucket

Saturday: 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM

November 7 to May 29, 2010

Slater Mill, Downtown Pawtucket

Sunday: 12:00 PM to 3:00 PM

June 7 to October 25, 2009

Rhodes on the Pawtuxet Parking Lot

60 Rhodes Pl, Cranston

Saturday: 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM

May 9 to November 21

Armory Park

Parade St And Hudson St, Providence

Thursday: 3:00 PM to 7:00 PM

June 4 to October 29

Algonquin House

807 Broad St, Providence

Saturday: 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM

July 11 to October 31

Wriston Quad, Brown University

Thayer St And George St, Providence

Wednesday: 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM

September 9 to November 4

Kennedy Plaza, Providence

Friday: 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM

June 12 to October 30

Lippitt Park

Hope St & Blackstone Blvd, Providence

Saturday: 9:30 AM to 12:30 PM

June 6 to October 31

RIC:  College Rd. And Mount Pleasant Ave., Providence

Wednesday: 3:30 PM to 6:00 PM

July 8 to October 14

Contact:

By car to the farm:

To get to the farm from Providence, take Rt. 6 west to 295

south, get off at the Plainfield Pike exit (the 2nd exit after

getting onto 295) turn right off of the exit and go about 4

miles. When you see Pezza Farm on your right and the

Buddhist Monastery on your left, take the next left. The

farm will be immediately on your right, there will be a sign

for Urban Edge Farm. Our fields are way up in the back,

follow the dirt road past the two big greenhouses, past the

pond and up the hill.

By bike:

From Providence, follow Plainfield St./Plainfield Pike all the

way to Pippin Orchard Rd. It is about 9 miles, after leaving

Olneyville, you will go up two big hills, past Wal Mart, down

a hill, then in a bit, it will be a little more farmy, you will go up

one more big hill, pass Pezza Farm on your right, and the

Monastery on your left, Pippin Orchard will be the next left at

the bottom of the hill, the farm immediately on your right after

turning onto Pippin Orchard.

email scratchfarm@gmail.com

call Katie at 351-4633

Visit us on facebook

CSA Pickup is at

186 Carpenter St.

in Providence

Map of the farm

35 Pippin Orchard Rd.

Cranston, RI 02921

Our mailing address

is different from the

farm address!

Send mail to:

Scratch Farm

4496 Flat River Rd.

Greene, RI 02827

Volunteering:

Helping Out

We love having volunteers at the farm.  If you want to come

out to help, call or email us to set up a time that works.  

Remember to bring a hat, some water, and clothes you

don't mind getting dirty in. Be advised that there is no

proper bathroom near our fields; we use the woods or the

weeds.

If you are organizing a group of 5 or more people for

a volunteer day, please get in touch at least a week in

advance to set up a time and date. For groups of 15 or

more we may be able to give you a tour of the farm in

conjunction with your volunteering. In general, we will be

available for hosting larger groups of volunteers between

11 and 6, Wednesdays and Thursdays, from April through

November.

    

Sunday Harvest

We also hold a workday every Sunday afternoon from May

through October.  Sundays have become a time for folks

to build community while having fun working on the farm.

If you want to come out for that, please do! CSA members,

friends, and anyone who wants to help out with the harvest

are welcome to join us.

The Sunday workday is a time and place of sanctuary for

many female, queer and transgender people. We seek out

and create this space together as a respite from a world

that is often dismissive of people perceived as female, and

hostile to people seen as gender variant. When you come

to work with us, we ask that you be respectful of your fellow

volunteers. Please don't make assumptions about people's

gender, what gender pronoun they use, or their sexual

orientation based on their bodies or self-presentation.

    

We look forward to seeing you out at the farm!

Growing proctices

We rely heavily on compost, green manures, mulch, and

crop rotation to maintain and build soil fertility. We do

not use any (organic or not) pesticides or herbicides. We

believe that good food comes from good soils, and have

seen plants stand up to disease, pest, and weed pressure

when they are grown in soil high in organic matter and where

a rich diversity of insect predators, pollinators, worms, and

beneficial microorganisms are encouraged to flourish.

We are continuously looking for ways to reduce our tillage,

plant more cover crops, diversify, and improve our crop

rotation. We are very happy to share our experiences with

reducing our tillage, saving seeds, running a CSA, or really

anything. Come visit and ask a lot of questions! We love

having visitors.