Rubie Simonsen doesn’t fit the traditional paradigm of a farmer. She’s in her 20s and wears a Frida Kalho t-shirt and has a leather portrait of Kalho on her keychain. She is part of a growing number of millennials intent on making something of the world that surrounds them.
Last year Simonsen went through a seven-month intensive program for first time farmers run by Center for Land-Based Learning based out of Winters, California.
The urban farm on the corner of 5th and C Street in West Sacramento owned by CLBL. Simonsen uses it to grow her crop of specialty herbs that will be the basis for her business, First Mother Farms.
Lemon Balm takes up an entire long row, sage and lavender varietals a couple others. There’s even a row of artichoke planted previously that will be used as a dye. Her favorite crop so far? Marigolds. She touches a plant from each row in turn with a slightly blistered hand.
”I was at my last job,” She says “Sitting at my desk, looking out the window and all I could think about was my farm.” She continues, "I needed to start this farm, to have dirt under my nails and see something grow.”
What is your motivation for the work you have chosen?