November 30, 2016

Only two years after opening, the Oxford Farm is fully operational with over two acres in cultivation, and consistently offers work days for student volunteers, a three-season community supported agriculture (CSA) weekly vegetable subscription program, and much more. Since receiving its U.S. Department of Agriculture Organic Certification in early 2015, the farm, led by manager Daniel Parson, has been working to grow more and more on the eleven-acre parcel of land. Parson said he is figuring out ways to maximize production year-round.

One of our issues on the property is drainage in the wintertime when it rains a lot, because its too wet to grow, Parson said. We have to have good drainage in the fields, so were working on that.

Parson thinks the farm will have more in production next summer because they will be able to grow crops in the hot summer months in areas too wet in the winter. Parson also hopes to have two crop rotations next year, as opposed to the single rotation they have been using thus far. Increased production will allow Emory to move closer to achieving the goal outlined in the 2015-2025 Emory Sustainability Vision to provide 50% of produce needed on the Oxford campus and 5% of produce needed on the Atlanta campus by 2020.

I am looking forward to everything about the farm next year, but in particular, I am excited about hiring a few more people to train to help out on the farm year-round. I think that will make a big difference so that we can stay caught up, Parson said.

According to Parson, the farm is also trying to refocus on its academic program. Its taken a few years to get up and running with production, Parson said, so Im trying to go into the classroom more, and get more students out to the farm with their classes."

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