Help at a small rural farm near Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA


United States

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  • Description


    UPDATE: In bad need for help in April and May with transplanting flowers and getting the gardens ready. May is the busiest time of the year for us, and we're looking for another person to give us a hand. We have three separate bedrooms with one shared bathroom downstairs, so we can take a couple, too. Please contact us with any questions you may have.

    Our farm began in 1991, when Ray and Amy left the big town of Wilmington for a small town called Bonlee in rural central North Carolina. What started out as a small greenhouse for our hardware store turned into 7100 sq ft of greenhouses (4, to be exact) and several large garden plots on our 32-acre property. Our farm also includes a chicken-house-turned-warehouse which we use as our feed store and "office". We have a pasture for our free range hens and small herd of sheep, as well as our sweet dog Josie and mouse-catchin' cat Cutie.

    Our business is selling at 5 farmers' markets during the busy season (April through November) and less during the winter markets, usually 2 or 3. We produce and sell many varieties of flowers depending on the time of year (geraniums, begonias, petunias, mums, pansies and other bedding plants, succulents, etc.). We also sell all kinds of sweet and hot peppers, okra, cherry tomatoes, blueberries and other produce depending on each year. Amy makes lots of jams, jellies, pickles, relishes, and sauerkraut for year-round sales. Ray is cutting wood to heat our greenhouses via an outdoor wood furnace, which requires 14-15 cords of wood per year.

    We have two wonderful daughters who were born in 1993 (Ramy) and 1995 (Erin), who are finishing college and traveling. Ramy introduced us to Workaway after her experiences in Europe and South America, and Erin plans to use it in the future as a way to learn about other cultures. After hearing of the good times and strong bonds Ramy has made in experiencing other cultures, we have decided to host and have some wonderful experiences ourselves.

  • Type of help

    Type of help

    General Maintenance
    Cooking / shopping
    Animal care
    Help with Computers / internet

  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Our farm is a perfect way to experience a beautiful rural setting in small-town USA. Anyone who enjoys the stars would love the nights here, and anyone who enjoys the quiet way of living would find peace here. Writers, artists, musicians would find few distractions and lots of inspiration from the trees, the creek, nature in general. Daydreamers too. :-)

  • Help


    January through April is our time for getting pots ready, growing seeds and planting plants, and preparing the garden for the spring growing season. Experience in gardening is a plus but not necessary. It is easy to learn, and dirt therapy is real!

    April through November is our time for market sales and keeping everything on the farm happy. Anyone who wants to experience the markets of Durham, Carrboro, Fearrington, Pinehurst, Southern Pines would love this. Working farmers' markets are optional, but they are a lot of fun! Watering the flowers, deadheading, loading the truck up for market, these are things to expect during this time.

    We are in the process of upgrading our facilities (greenhouses, warehouse, garden areas). Anyone with experience in light construction work would be great to help with these projects.

    Workawayers can expect to help a maximum of 25 hours during the week. We prefer a minimum of two weeks stay. Couples accepted and preferred (happy to take solo travelers as well, might get a bit lonely depending on how social you are). No children or pets please. We prefer nonsmokers.

  • Languages spoken

    Languages spoken


  • Accommodation


    Workawayers will stay in the bottom level of the house, where there are several bedrooms, your own bathroom, and a large room which will have a small refrigerator. One of the bedrooms has a piano, and we welcome all those who play as we love to listen! The top floor has the kitchen and the sitting area, plus a TV room and access to a laptop. WIFI available.

    We usually have one meal together during the day, and Workawayers will have access to the pantry and upstairs fridge. We eat meat, but all are welcome. Amy would love someone to cook in the kitchen! :-)

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    We can pick you up at the RDU airport in Raleigh/Durham or the PTI airport in Greensboro, or at the bus station and train station in Durham. Otherwise it would be best to have your own vehicle, as there is no public transportation in this area.

    We are an hour from Durham, Chapel Hill, Greensboro, Sanford, Fayetteville, Southern Pines/Pinehurst, and little over an hour from Raleigh and Winston Salem. Jordan Lake is thirty minutes away and is a nice place to go relaxing in the sunshine. There is also a river about 15-20 minutes away where you can go kayaking. We are less than three hours from Wilmington on the coast and 3.5 hours from Asheville in the mountains. It is a great central location for anyone roadtripping through the area or who want to explore all that North Carolina has to offer.

  • A little more information

    A little more information

    • Internet access

    • Limited internet access

      Limited internet access

    • We have pets

    • We are smokers

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?

    More than two

  • ...

    Hours expected

    Maximum 5 hr a day, 5 days a week

Amy planting geraniums in the early months of the year
Erin, Amy, and Ramy at the Durham Farmers' Market
Entrance to the greenhouses
Ray with the pepper plants
Two of our four greenhouses
Pansy and mum season
The inside of one of the greenhouses (full of dragonwing begonias, aloe, Moses plants, and bromeliads)
Butterflies love our farm.

Host ref number: 962691132168