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"One hears a lot about the rules of good husbandry; there is only one — leave the land far better than you found it."
- George Henderson, The Farming Ladder
  You are here:  PublicationsBulletin Board ArchiveMOFGA Bulletin Board - 2017April 27 2017   
  

 

MAINE ORGANIC FARMERS AND GARDENERS ASSOCIATION

Bulletin Board

APRIL 27, 2017


Organic Gardening Tip:
Cabbage Aphid Control Begins in Spring

Cabbage aphid damage can be most severe on fall crops in the Brassica family - but actions you take now and continue through summer can help avoid that damage. In his article "Managing Cabbage Aphids" in the spring issue of The Maine Organic Farmer & Gardener, Eric Sideman recommends crop rotation, good management of crop residue, and supporting beneficial insects, among other practices, for addressing this insect.
 
Farmer- - - -

New Farmer in Residence Grows Organic Flowers     

Carole Mapes, MOFGA's new farmer-in-residence, will be bringing organic floriferous beauty to the hoophouse and fields at MOFGA's Common Ground Education Center. Mapes started at MOFGA in early spring and now has a hoophouse full of healthy seedlings for her cut flower business, including stock, poppies and sweet peas.

Mapes grew up in Iowa and has been in Maine for five years, first farming at Fail Better Farm and then at Cornerstone Farm. At the latter, MOFGA journeyperson Sarah Ingalls had been growing cut flowers, and when Ingalls left, Mapes took over the flower cultivation. She says she likes farming, and flowers seemed like a crop that is in demand and can be grown on smaller acreage than some other crops. She welcomes the opportunity to grow at MOFGA during her time as farmer-in-residence, as she has access to MOFGA's land, machinery, walk-in cooler, hoophouse and other infrastructure, thus saving money initially while she starts her business, Flywheel Flowers (@flywheelflowers on Instagram). She'll be selling at five farmers' markets. In winter and spring, Mapes works at the call center of Johnny's Selected Seeds.

Welcome, Carol!
 
 Viability- - - -

MOFGA Seeks Volunteers to Support Viability of Organic Farmers   

MOFGA is seeking five volunteers to assist with a pricing research project in Maine. Successful project completion will merit these volunteers a gift of their choice from our online store (Fair posters, T-shirts and onesies ... oh my!) or access to any one of our workshops (Chainsaw Safety, Kitchen Licensing, Poultry Processing, and more) - worth up to $50 for either choice - as well as our eternal thanks and appreciation!

We are seeking volunteers from different areas of the state: Western Maine, Portland, Aroostook County, Bangor, and Lewiston/Auburn or Augusta. Each of these volunteers will survey local pricing for organic products three to five times over the summer and fall at farmers' markets, co-ops or natural foods stores, and at traditional grocery stores. This information will be reported to Heather Omand, MOFGA's organic marketing and business coordinator, to develop price reports and an analysis of prices at different market types statewide. Volunteers will be credited on our website and on any publications/white papers released.

To inquire about this opportunity, please contact Heather Omand at homand@mofga.org (preferred) or 207-568-6024.  
 
Earth-Day- - - -

Tree planting in the Maine Heritage Orchard on Earth Day. Photo by Anna Libby

MOFGA Grateful for Earth Day Volunteers     

Despite the cold and rain, about 80 people showed up at MOFGA on April 22 to celebrate Earth Day by cleaning the grounds and gardens and planting more trees in our Maine Heritage Orchard. Thank you, volunteers! You make a huge difference. We are also grateful to MOFGA staff members Jason Tessier, Don Pendleton and Anna Libby for all their help in making Earth Day a success.   
 
Bowl- - - -

Thanks to Donors and Diners at the 16th Annual Empty Bowl Supper     

The April fundraiser for the MOFGA-El Salvador Sistering Committee was a huge success, thanks to all the donors and those who attended.
Donors included the following:
Soup - committee members and Heath Garrold 
Food - Belfast Co-op Store, Happytown Farm, Villageside Farm 
Bread - Back 40 Bakehouse, Montville 
Music - Shawn and Maizey Mercer, Orland 
Organization - Susan Pierce 
Venue - Paul Naron, United Farmers Market of Belfast 
Bowls 
Charlie Grosjean, Hog Bay Pottery, Franklin 
Chris Breedlove, Honey Bee Pottery, Mt. Desert 
Betsy Levine, Prescott Hill Pottery, Liberty 
Mary Trotochaud, Everyday Pottery, Belmont 
Akemi Wray, Gull Rock Pottery, Hancock 
Chris Covert, Point Road Pottery, Hancock 
H.O.M.E., Orland 
Loken Pottery, Farmingdale    
 
Survey- - - -

National Cover Crop Survey Active Now

The Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) program needs farmers' input for its National Cover Crop Survey at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/2017CoverCropSurvey. The National Cover Crop Survey takes just under 15 minutes to complete and provides SARE with vital information that helps it understand why farmers do or don't use cover crops and how cover crops have benefited farmers who do use them. Survey results from the past four years have been extremely beneficial to informing research needs, policy making and outreach regarding cover crops. The survey will close in mid-May. 
 
Chainsaw- - - -

MOFGA Chainsaw Safety Workshops
May 6 and 7; 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Each course:$150; $130 for MOFGA members
Both courses: $275; $250 MOFGA members for both introductory and intermediate courses
Location: Bethel, Maine

Introductory Chainsaw Safety and Technique Course

Intermediate Chainsaw Safety and Technique Course 
 
Compost- - - -

Maine Composts Week

May 7-13 is Maine Composts Week. If you're cleaning out your winter greenhouse or root cellar and have leftover crops, consider donating them to Maine Composts Week's Community Supper events. FMI: mainecompostsweek@gmail.com or https://umaine.edu/mitchellcenter/maine-composts-week/. The website has other ideas for composting and reducing food waste. 
 
KLW- - - -

Kitchen Licensing Workshop 
May 11
Thursday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Common Ground Education Center, Unity
Registration fees (includes lunch): $35 for MOFGA members; $50 for non-members

 
Designed for farmers and others interested in home-food processing for resale. Licensing requirements, food safety, and liability insurance will be covered by a panel of experts. Participants will then tour a licensed kitchen before being served a local, seasonal, organic luncheon. The afternoon program will include a panel of processors who will discuss the benefits and shortcomings of home licensed and commercial kitchens.

Interested in a partial or full scholarship? Please fill out a scholarship application form.
 
Orcharding- - - -

Top Grafting Fruit Trees 
May 13 - Mueller's Fruit Farm, Thorndike
Saturday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Fee: $50; $40 for MOFGA members
Please bring your own bag lunch
Learn to topwork new, disease-resistant, cider, dessert or heritage varieties onto your existing trees with John Bunker. In this workshop you will see how a professional topgrafts and will be able to try it on your own.
 
Principles- - - -

Organic Farming: Principles and Practices 
May 17 and 18
MOFGA's Common Ground Education Center, Unity
$100 per day or $150 for both days
Discounts for MOFGA members.
This is a two-day immersion course for MOFGA apprentices but is open to any participants interested in learning the fundamental principles and practices of organic farming.

Join specialists from MOFGA's Agricultural Services Department and a panel of organic farmers for a two-day introductory course in organic farming. Register for either or both days. Lunch will be provided.

Day one will focus on the fundamentals of organic vegetable farming. MOFGA's Eric Sideman, Organic Crops Specialist, and Dave Colson, Agricultural Services Director, will cover theory and best practices for organic management of soils, and cover plant families. After lunch we will tour a neighboring farm. Day two will address the fundamentals of organic livestock husbandry, production systems and pasture management taught by MOFGA's Organic Livestock Specialist Diane Schivera and a panel of organic farmers. See the course outline

Interested in a partial or full scholarship? Please fill out a scholarship application form by May 1st.
 
FTP- - - -

MOFGA's Farm Training Project Workshops Begin Soon!

Designed to augment the on-farm learning of the farm apprenticeship program, MOFGA's Farm Training Project (FTP) workshops follow an informal format, usually beginning with a farm tour followed by a presentation on the topic of the day. Participants are invited to stay for a potluck supper - bring a dish or something fresh from the farm to share (please bring your own place setting as well). All events are held rain or shine and are free and open to the public. For more information or directions to any of the workshops, call 207-568-6018, email education@mofga.org, or check the FTP website.

Organic Farming Principles and Practices
Wednesday, May 17, and Thursday, May 18, at MOFGA's Common Ground Education Center, Unity. Free for MOFGA apprentices! Join Eric Sideman, Dave Colson, Diane Schivera and Rick Kersbergen for a two-day introductory course to organic farming. Register (required) for either or both days; lunch will be provided.

2017! Communication Kickoff! Potluck! Social!
 
Wednesday, May 31, 5 p.m., Villageside Farm, Freedom

Fiber Farming
Monday, June 5, 5 p.m., Springtide Farm, Bremen

Cover Crops
Thursday, June 15, 6 p.m., Dooryard Farm, Camden

Organic Livestock Management
Wednesday, June 21, 5 p.m., Milkhouse Farm, Monmouth

Medicinal Herbs
Thursday, July 6, 5 p.m., Avena Botanicals, Rockport

High Tunnel Construction
Thursday, July 20, 5 p.m., at Farmer Kev's Organics, West Gardiner

Weed Management
Thursday, July 27, 5 p.m., Goranson Farm, Dresden

Other workshops will be scheduled soon. 
 
EventsEvents in Maine and Beyond - Mark Your Calendar!

 
April 28-29 - New England Meat Conference, Manchester, N.H. https://www.newenglandmeatconference.com/

April 29 - Maine Poultry Seminar. Saturday, 9:00 a.m. to 2:45 p.m., Carter Auditorium, Kennebec Valley Community College, 95 Western Ave., Fairfield. Bring your own lunch. Free, no charge. Register by contacting Melissa Libby at melissa.libby1@maine.edu or 207-581-2788 (800-287-7170 in Maine only).
 
May 5 - MOFGA's Common Ground Radio Show, an hour on local food and agriculture. 10 a.m. on 89.9 and 99.9 FM and weru.org

May 6 & 7 - Chainsaw Safety Training. Introductory Course on Saturday, May 6; Intermediate Course on Sunday, May 7. Information.

May 11 - Kitchen Licensing Workshop. Thursday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Common Ground Education Center, Unity. Designed for farmers and others interested in home-food processing for resale. Information. Register here.

May 13 - MOFGA Organic Orcharding Workshop: Top Grafting Fruit Trees. Saturday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Mueller's Fruit Farm, Thorndike. Please bring a bag lunch. Learn to topwork new, disease-resistant, cider, dessert or heritage varieties onto your existing trees with John Bunker. Registration fee: $50; $40 for MOFGA members. Register here.

May 17-18 - Organic Farming: Principles and Practices. Wednesday & Thursday, MOFGA's Common Ground Education Center, Unity. Two-day immersion course open to any participants interested in learning the fundamental principles and practices of organic farming. $100 per day or $150 for both days; Discounts for MOFGA members. Information and course outline or register here.

May 19-21 - Northeast Livestock Exposition. Windsor, Maine. IBGA Boer goat show, poster contest, feeder calf sale, wool pool, equine clinics, rabbit show, youth cook-off, beef-sheep-alpaca displays, shows & sales, educational programs, commercial trade show, Boer goat consignment sale. Demonstrations and exhibits.

May 25 - MOFGA Poultry Processing Workshop. Thursday, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., MOFGA's Common Kitchen at the Common Ground Education Center, Unity. $75. $60 for MOFGA members. Information and registration.

June 17 - Farm & Homestead Day at MOFGA. MOFGA's Common Ground Education Center, Unity. Come and learn all you need to know and more about living in rural Maine. All workshops are hands-on. Free!

June 24 - MOFGA Organic Orcharding Workshop: Summer Orchard Care. Saturday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Redpath Orchard, 9 Orchard Rd., Cumberland. Please bring a bag lunch. Learn tips and tricks to caring for your orchard through the summer and getting your orchard to a successful harvest. Instructor: C.J. Walke, MOFGA's organic orchard educator. Registration fee: $50; $35 for MOFGA members. Register here. More information.
  
 
 

 

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