Workday May 2 - Construction and building improvement

The farm will have a workday this Saturday 5/2 from 1-5. We're trying to do some construction/building improvement related work. There may be other important work to trump that, but so far that's the plan. If you can come, please heads-up with Nate (515-231-2002) by Saturday morning so he can make plans for which projects to tackle. Especially if you're handy . . . . but we'd love to have you any way you are!

Special concert potluck coming up on June 5!

The first potluck at the farm for the summer season will be on June 5th, will feature a live performance by Paul Doffing. Please join us sharing food then enjoy the excellent and moving music of this talented singer-songwriter in his first performance in his newest bike tour. Help us give him a great lift-off! You can read more about his musical life at

Join us May 8 for the last winter potluck

Our last "winter" potluck will happen next Friday 5/8. The potluck will feature a discussion about combating racism, perhaps involving a film. Especially regarding recent police violence demonstrations in our cities, it remains a very pertinent, essential and challenging topic to address. Anna Johnson and David Weisberger will host at 209 South Oak Ave Apt. 110. 6-8 p.m.

prairie seedlinging

prairie burn

Spring project updates

Next farm potluck

On Friday April 10, 6-8pm we will be discussing citizen Science and on-farm research! As usual it is a potluck.
I think the farm will be presenting on the on-farm research projects we participated in with Practical Farmers of Iowa last year, and what we have planned for the coming year. Also learn about other citizen science projects that we can all participate in, and give input into projects you think we should be doing on the farm.

This one is at Elena's house:
2615 Aspen Rd. Unit 5
Ames, IA 50010

(thanks Mark for posting a blog even after you've moved to DC! - alice)

Pond and Basement Progress update

We will have pictures up soon but work is underway.

The hole for the basement and drainage trench were dug last week. This week we had the footings formed and poured and drainage system established just before the rain yesterday. The walls will be formed and poured hopefully this Friday. After that its giving the walls some extra protection and backfilling. Then its the hard part - building the wall next to the existing footings of the house.

Call for Volunteers @ Spring Work Days

Come help Mustard Seed with spring planting! We'll have a lot of trees to plant, mulch and protect, as well starting the planting in the garden.

April 4th, 1-5 p.m.
April 11th, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.
April 18th, 1-5 p.m.

We'd love to have your help in getting the growing season going and with our big tree planting project. The pond and storm shelter are underway! Rye cover crop is starting to grow again and there's a few plants greening up here and there. Also, our bees survived the winter! Its an exciting time at the farm.

digging a storm shelter

Luckily for us, we have had a warm, dry spell early this year, and we have been taking advantage of it by starting our digging. We have these 2 big projects planned for the spring - digging and building a storm shelter with sun room on top, attached to our house, and digging a pond in our slough and planting about 80 trees and shrubs in the area around it. We will have SO MANY things to plant in april, so it is wonderful to get started on some of this work in march.
here's our house before the digging:

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