Sustainability in Production

Book & Plow believes strongly in long-term sustainability of the land and farm. What this means is that for the past seven years B&P has been cover cropping, applying compost, and developing ways to increase soil health and the surrounding ecology. We follow integrated pest management and use organic growing practices. The farm is now part of the Campus Dining Services at Amherst College.

To learn more about the Farm's history and the recent transitions we've made, visit our Food & Dining page.

A tractor underneath a greenhouse structure on the Book and Plow Farm
Spring preparation on the Book & Plow Farm
Maida B. Ives

Maida B. Ives

Manager of Farm Education and Operations

I love sunshine, teamwork, food, and physical labor. I have been living and studying the intersection of food and education for years. After years teaching middle school math, I volunteered on farms while traveling, and learned vegetable production in Northern Virginia. While living there, I searched for farms that work with students to grow food. I moved here to work at Book & Plow Farm and love serving as the manager.

Kaylee M. Brow

Assistant Farm Manager

Farm Greenhouse and Service Building

I discovered agriculture during my freshman year at UMass Amherst and was quickly drawn to the hard work and being outside. I studied Sustainable Food and Farming at UMass and spent two seasons as a crew leader for Many Hands Farm Corps. As a crew leader I discovered how much I like working with intern crews and the problem solving element of farming. Most people would describe me as crochet-obsessed and I love talking about yarn, sheep, and the history of fiber.

Julia F. Herion-Cruz

Before graduating from Amherst and becoming staff, I found my love for farming at Book & Plow as a summer intern. As a student the farm was a source of community, a place to get away from the stress of academics, and a catalyst of learning and exploration. For that reason, I’m happy to work here now and create programming/initiatives that help introduce students to a space so important and positive for me during my Amherst days. I love talking about astrology, rodents, current events, and what it means to be emotionally vulnerable.

Book & Plow Land

The center of the operation is located at the Core Site, where you will find our greenhouse, an acre of vegetables, .5 acres of cover crops, fruit trees, a perennial garden, and some beautiful views. This field was selected because it is within walking distance of Amherst College.


 The address of the core site is 425 South East Street at the top of Tuttle Hill.

Most of the vegetable production occurs on Mill lane, at the River and Valley Fields. In 2018 we will be cultivating 6.5 acres of vegetables, 10 acres of cover crops, and 30 acres of pasture.