Carbon Farming

The foundation of our carbon farming operation is our compost system. Compost is the breakdown of organic matter that becomes nutrients for the surrounding plants and soil microbes. A rich microbial environment helps plants sequester carbon from the atmosphere back into the ground, and is rapidly becoming recognized in the scientific community as one of the greatest hopes for reversing catastrophic global climate change.
We make our compost in small batches and use all of it onsite. The spent grain we receive from North Coast Brewing Company is 55 percent moisture, which makes it light and crumbly in texture. We use an MM-80 windrow turner pulled by our zero-emissions tractor to aerate and mix our compost.  This process incorporates 15 pounds of air per pound of material into the windrows, which helps create the right environment for compost organisms. We typically turn our compost every other day until the temperature stops rising after turning. Once the compost is finished, it’s used to dress our production field, and the area in which it was made becomes our next planting site.
We also practice rotational grazing. We have a small herd of fiber and dairy sheep that graze in rotation around the property. We use our small flock to keep down invasive species, and by grazing them rotationally we are able to help support healthy soil and stimulate growth of beneficial plants. During the fall and winter months, Gowan can be found spinning the fleece in her cabin.

We are proud to partner with the Mendocino County Resource Conservation District (MCRCD) and Fibershed. We are one of the first farms of any kind in Mendocino County to be developing a carbon farm plan with the MCRCD.

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