Each and every FruitGuys Community Fund grantee amazes us with their dedication to their community and the land. FARM Davis is no exception. They’re a nonprofit community farm in Davis, CA, that donates a substantial portion of their produce to low-income and homeless individuals. Robyn Waxman, the farm’s executive director, says that at FARM Davis (FARM stands for “The Future Action Reclamation Mob”), they believe “food is a human right.” For her, the farm is more than a community garden; rather, it’s “a direct-action collective.”
They also strive to involve the community in their work. Even though farming with a group of people presents challenges of its own, FARM Davis encourages community members to participate. Sharing the farm allows people to take part in providing for the community and learn the skills it takes to produce food.
In 2016 this deserving organization became a FruitGuys Community Fund grantee and received a $2,133 grant to work on their integrated pest management system. With those funds they were able to install owl boxes, plant a clover crop, and purchase a new mower attachment for their tractor. The boxes provide nesting places for owls, while the clover is kept fairly short with their new mower and provides the owls with excellent hunting grounds. Encouraging owls to live on the farm is an excellent, sustainable way to keep rodent populations in check.
With their new system in place, FARM Davis has been working to educate others about the benefits of integrated pest management, or IPM. They feature their owl boxes on farm tours and have led owl habitat workshops for local residents, teaching them about the important role that owls play in IPM.
Check out our interview with Robyn Waxman to learn more about the incredible work going on at FARM Davis and how small community farms can make a big difference.
Jordan Charbonneau is an organic farmer and writer from West Virginia. She holds degrees in ecology and environmental humanities from Sterling College in Vermont.