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Co-Applicant / Spouse:

Sarah Alvarez


(989) 600-5428


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Past and present farming experience:

Michigan State University,
College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Class of 2013
East Lansing, MI
2009 – 2013
● Bachelor of Science- Environmental Studies and Agriscience with a concentration in Science and Policy.

Assistant Greenhouse/Field Manager,
Wandering Roots Farm
Gold Hill, OR
April 2016 – November 2016
● Responsible for organic transplant production on a 10 acre, certified organic farm.
● Facilitated plant-outs.
● Lead market/wholesale harvest efforts.
● Delivered produce each week to restaurants & grocery stores in the Rogue Valley.

Assistant Mushroom Production Manager,
Myriad Mycology
Talent, OR
September 2015 – February 2016
● Facility manager at a startup gourmet/medicinal mushroom cultivation laboratory.
● Carried out all mushroom cultivation protocol including substrate preparation, sterilization/pasteurization, spawn selection, inoculation, incubation, initiation/fruiting, and harvest.
● Demonstrated proficient sterile culture technique.
● Experience cultivating various mushroom species including shiitake, reishi, lion’s mane, oyster, pioppino.

Farm Apprentice,
Chickadee Farm
Talent, OR
March 2015 – October 2015
● 2015 farm apprentice for a small-scale, organic/biodynamic, seed production farm.
● Assisted in all aspects of farm production including building projects, greenhouse management, tractor operation, field prep, irrigation, cultivation, planting, harvesting, seed processing and deliveries.
● Participated in weekly classes focused on farm operation and management.
● Developed farm management skills by being responsible for organizing and prioritizing multiple, time-sensitive farm operations.

Farm Apprentice,
Lake Breeze Organics
Benton Harbor, MI
April 2014 – November 2014
● 2014 farm apprentice for a small, diversified fruit/vegetable/livestock operation.
● Maintained three greenhouses for high production, resilience, and aesthetics.
● Established/cared for new plantings of gooseberries, blackberries, blueberries, currants, plum trees, apple trees, and asparagus.
● Instrumental in weekly harvest & market preparation.
● Conducted weekly CSA deliveries in SW Michigan, downtown Chicago, IL and Evanston, IL.

AmeriCorps Member,
Hunter Park GardenHouse
Lansing, MI
October 2013 – February 2013
● Gardening Educator, AmeriCorps member.
● Developed/promoted gardening education throughout Lansing’s eastside.
● Facilitated youth gardening and nutrition programs.
● Provided mentoring/instruction to GardenHouse visitors and volunteers during open hours.

Undergraduate Research Assistant,
Michigan State University Horticulture Department
East Lansing, MI
May 2012 – January 2013
● Undergraduate research assistant in a lab researching Stevia rebaudiana.
● Propagated plants with cuttings and tissue culture (also transplanted cuttings/cultures).
● Completed protocols such as polymerase chain reaction, DNA extraction, polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis.
● Collected data from Stevia plants in the field at the MSU Horticulture Farm.

Counties being considered:
  • Androscoggin County
  • Cumberland County
  • Franklin County
  • Hancock County
  • Kennebec County
  • Knox County
  • Lincoln County
  • Oxford County
  • Penobscot County
  • Piscataquis County
  • Sagadahoc County
  • Somerset County
  • Waldo County
  • Washington County
  • York County

Types of enterprises considered:
  • Apple/Fruit
  • Berries
  • Grains
  • Greenhouse
  • Herbs
  • Livestock
  • Pasture
  • Row Crops
  • Vegetables
  • Woodlot

Total Acres Desired:

6 or more

Tillable Acres:

4 or more

Wooded acres:


Acres in Pasture:


Acres in Pasture:


Acres in Orchard/Fruit/Perennials:


  • Yes

Farm structures needed:
  • Barn(s)
  • Storage
  • Greenhouses

Equipment needed:

Tractor + implements and/or BCS + implements

Arrangement(s) considered
  • Standard Sale
  • Owner-Financed Sale
  • Long Term Lease
  • Lease with Option to Buy
  • Work to Own (Gradual Transfer of Responsibility & Farm Assests)
  • Partnership
  • Joint Venture with eventual sale

I am interested in farms with Conservation Easements:
  • Yes
  • Maybe (Please send me information)

Here is a summary of the vision for my farming future and/or business plan:

I do have a business plan with ever-increasing detail but, for the sake of this section, I will give you the abstract:

My vision is to have a highly diversified organic farming operation, incorporating wholesale/market farming, vegetable seed growing contracts, and gourmet mushroom production.
-The wholesale/market gardening will be on a very compact scale requiring only a few tillable acres (loosely following the farming/marketing practices of Eliot Coleman and JM Fortier). Market research specific to the area surrounding the farm will be needed in order to determine the best crops to grow. I have a working knowledge of dozens of different crops and am confident that I can figure out the best mix of crops for the climate and regional markets.
-I will obtain vegetable seed contracts annually from companies like High Mowing, Fedco, Johnny's Selected Seeds, and other regional seed companies. This component of the operation, again, will only require a few acres of tillable land.
-The main mushroom crops will be log-grown shiitake and straw-grown oyster mushrooms. Research will be conducted to determine the possibilities of marketing lesser-known gourmet/medicinal species.

A long term goal of establishing perennial production will be of key importance. Modest production of fruits, berries, and herbs will begin to occur a few years after start-up. There will be a small amount of pastured animals on farm, mostly for fertility and overall farm health.

I will need to be within two hours driving distance of farmers markets, restaurants, and grocery stores. Utilizing greenhouse production and season extension techniques I will be able to produce vegetables and mushrooms during 8-10 months of the year.

The labor needs will initially be met by my partner and me. I will work full-time on the farm and my partner will work part-time. If necessary, I will work part-time at another job and slowly build up the operation until a full commitment is possible. In the long-term an apprentice or employee may be taken on.