The Sharing Farm can now enjoy speedy and efficient planting with our brand new tool: the paperpot transplanter.
Thanks to the Richmond Community Foundation, the Sharing Farm was recently able to purchase a paperpot transplanter. The paperpot transplanter is an ingenious machine that can cut down on weeks of work by cleverly planting seedlings as it is dragged backwards across a row. Using this tool, hundreds of seedlings can be planted in mere minutes! This allows for far more productivity without a loss of yield on the farm. At the Sharing Farm, we are always looking to maximize the amount of produce harvested in order to contribute as many fresh vegetables to the food bank and community meals for people in our community as possible.
To ensure that seeds properly germinate, they are typically started in a controlled environment or greenhouse. After seedlings begin to grow, they must be transplanted into the fields. It’s important they are planted at a particular depth and distance from one another. Due to the particular nature of this task and the thousands of plants requiring transplanting each year, it can be very laborious.
The paperpot transplanter also helps maximize the amount of produce that can be grown in the space available. Each plant requires a certain amount of space in order to limit competition nutrients with its neighbouring plants. When transplanting by hand, distances are typically estimated and therefore less precise. Using the new tool, our farmer is able to adjust the distance between each seedling to ensure that as many plants are planted as possible while simultaneously ensuring that there is no wasted space in our fields.
In addition to more efficient transplanting, this tool helps to free up the time of our farm manager as well as our hard-working volunteers. Other tasks and projects can be taken on in the time saved by the transplanter making for more productivity everywhere on the farm.
We’re excited to be using this new tool and it has already been a huge help as we enter growing season!
Megan Stewart is the events intern for the Sharing Farm
The Sharing Farm is a non-profit farm in Terra Nova Park, which grows food to donate to the food bank and community meal programs in Richmond.