Apply to FARMS
Thank you for your interest in the FARMS Project! Applications are currently open. Click here for the application document and signatures page. Note: This application and project is contingent on final NRCS approval and paperwork, which we expect to be finished by mid-Feb.
Email completed applications to firstname.lastname@example.org
Or mail them to CCTA – FARMS Project, 23929 County Road 16, Kit Carson, CO 80825
FARMS is working with dryland and irrigated farmers in eastern CO (East of the Continental Divide), NE, and KS. Any size operation is eligible.
- Addressing the four soil health principles on the fields enrolled in FARMS, or be in transition.
- Located in Eastern CO, KS, or NE
- EQIP eligible (even though this is not an EQIP program)
- Have control over the land involved for the next 3 years
- Meet the AGI requirements
- cover crop selection and establishment challenges, and opportunities for interseeding, intercropping, and living mulches
- opportunities to integrate greater diversity in production systems, such as management for soil health in integrated crop-livestock systems
- cover crop termination in organic or herbicide resistant systems for insurance purposes
- soil health in cold climates
- soil health alternatives to chem fallow
FARMS Program details
More details about the incentive payments and your deliverables during this project are coming soon.
Thank you for considering being a FARMS Mentor, and sharing your experiences with us!
What is a FARMS mentor?
You are peer support for the Transitioning producers who are grappling with the challenges of implementing soil health in your region. You will be paid to visit mentee farms and to support them on phone/email/text/social media. You’ll look at the exciting practices they are implementing, learn the good and bad they are experiencing, and support them in their soil health goals. We will cover your mileage, per diem, and pay you hourly to visit with your likeminded neighbors and talk about bold and innovating ways to build soil health.
You are likely the most experienced soil health practitioner in your hub. This means that you’ve probably seen lots of successes and lots of failures, and you’ve been able to work through any failures and keep going. This is incredibly valuable information for your mentees. As a mentor, we hope you share with them your successes and failures, and why you think those practices succeeded or failed.
You’ll get mentorship training each year, details TBD. You’ll also get support from our team of TA’s, Storm Casper, Ray Ward, Mark Watson, and Greg Scott, and we can connect you with resources at CSU or KSU. You can also help support each other, if you’d like us to coordinate conference calls or field days between mentors.
What is a mentor NOT?
- You aren’t responsible for proscribing practices or performing the duties of an agronomist
- You aren’t liable for anything, including if your mentees have unsuccessful experiments
- You aren’t expected to have all the answers, but we hope you’ve got some good questions!
- You aren’t there to tell anyone what to do, or to diagnose any issues on your mentee’s land.
- You aren’t responsible for the Comprehensive Soil Health Management Plans of your mentees – neither the content, nor meeting any deadlines. But please help them out if they get stuck and need someone to bounce ideas off of.
What compensation do mentors receive?
- Salary for supporting your mentees (we’ve budgeted 12 days per year, split between your 3 mentees)
- Mileage reimbursement
- Per-diem travel
What else is different for mentors?
We’ll be doing some extra testing on your land, to see how longer-term regenerative compares to conventional. This includes:
- Nutrient density testing – we’ll be testing your grain or pulse for the density of mineral nutrients. Health First will coordinate getting a grab sample of your grain as it’s being harvested, and we’ll test it at Rhizoterra Inc in Spokane, WA.
- Deeper dive into your economics – we’ll be collecting more data and going deeper into the economics of your soil health practices.
Have questions or need help with the application?
Contact us! We are here to help.