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Who Discovered the CSA Model?

Two New England farms, Indian Line Farm in Massachusetts and Temple-Wilton Community Farm in New Hampshire, have widely been credited with starting the CSA movement in America, said to have been inspired by European agricultural traditions. The farms—one white-owned and one member-owned—implemented their first farm share programs in 1986. But the story of the CSA model actually begins decades earlier, in the 1960s and ‘70s, with a man named Booker T. Whatley. A Black horticulturist and agricultural professor at Tuskegee University in Alabama (where he followed in the footsteps of George Washington Carver), Whatley was an advocate for regenerative agriculture, among other environmentalist practices. At the height of the civil rights movement, Whatley began counseling the Black farmers who were deeply engaged in that struggle.

What Is "Shared Soil" CSA?

Joining a CSA allows you to connect with the food that you eat. A traditional CSA model of agriculture connects the producer with local consumers. Our new model goes a step further and allows you to connect with the "soil" where your food will be grown. With this model you become one with the earth, nature, wildlife and all of its bountiful beauty. Watching your efforts produce plants peeping out of the soil for the first time is unlike any experience that you will ever witness. Within a few weeks enjoying the literal fruits of your labor at the dinner table knowing that it was not store bought but grown, raised and harvested by your very own efforts on your hands and knees. What a special time to become a producer! We call it "Hands & Knees" CSA precisely for those of you who not only want the experience of eating tasty vegetables but for those who want to see how it is to grow them as well with your own efforts. Groundswell's new model introduces you to the great outdoors and adds a community experience with your neighbor next to you and others enjoying the same awesome experience. Groundswell's "Shared Soil" options allows you to become a member by purchasing a "Shared Soil" space on the farm to grow your own vegetables.

How Does This "Shared Soil" CSA Model Work

This "Shared Soil" model is a self serve CSA model. There will be minimal personal instruction.

Sign up by completing the attached (2) forms below. Be sure to complete which size of "Shared Soil" space you would like. Read rules and responsibilities, agree to terms and send to Groundswell via e-mail or mail. Preferably e-mail for faster processing. "

Shared Soil" space options to choose from the following:

Option #1: 10 x 20 - $70 per month
Option #2: 10 x 10 - $60 per month

All spaces will be designated in the middle southeast corner of the farm. 10 x 20 spaces will all be located in the same area near the middle of the farm. 10 x 10 spaces will be opposite on the East side. Make an appointment via e-mail to view your reserved space.

All spaces will be given a number, staked out and labeled at the farm. All members will be sent instructions and will be required to follow rules outlined in the member authorization agreement.

Where Is Our Farm Located?

Groundswell Farm is locally owned and operated. We are located in Ottawa County at 6527 Quincy St., Zeeland, Michigan 49464


Download and complete our Member Registration Form and the Authorization, Rules & Waiver form.

Email completed form to:

Mail a check or money order to 520 Butternut Dr. Suite 8, PMB 277 Holland, MI 49424

*No "Shared Soil" space will be reserved until forms and payment are received. Groundswell staff will be available to answer questions.

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