The 139th Real Farmer Care recipient is Bo Dennis of Dandy Ram Farm @dandy_ram_farmer in Monroe, Maine.
Dennis writes, “My name is Bo (he/him) and I manage Dandy Ram Farm @dandy_ram_farmer, a queer and trans flower farm growing in unceded Penobscot territory/Monroe, Maine. As a transgender beginning farmer, role models were few in the organic farming community when I started working 14 years ago. I juggled trying too hard to fit into a community that romanticizes the cisgender, hetero nuclear family farm and an unsustainable work ethic all while traveling far distances to access queer supportive health care and community. It was exhausting and isolating. Connecting to rural queer community has been essential in providing a healing space. Being an out queer farm now is a celebration and reclamation of my body which is often rejected by larger society. I see the exploitation and marginalization occurring in the sustainable farming community as intersectional. For me, reveling in queer joy must be rooted in solidarity with decolonization and wealth redistribution, key pillars woven into my farm business. I am grateful for projects like Real Farmer Care that break the stigma around talking about self and community care, and lift up farmers as whole people. The moment I stopped trying to hide being so gay, I became a better farmer. I’m excited to use this money as the start of a health care stipend for my employee this year, another queer beginning farmer.” Photo credit @kelseykobik #dandyramfarm #dandyramfarmer #queerfarmers #transfarmers #transgenderfarmers #gayflowers #maineflowers #realfarmercare