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"Industrial agriculture and the assumptions on which it rests are wrong, root and branch."
- Wendell Berry
  You are here:  PublicationsBulletin Board ArchiveMOFGA Bulletin Board - 2017March 17 2017   
  

 

MAINE ORGANIC FARMERS AND GARDENERS ASSOCIATION

Bulletin Board

MARCH 17, 2017


Wendy Green outside the house she built and next to the mullein plant that just appeared. Photo courtesy of Wendy Green

Organic Gardening Tip:
Growing Medicinal Herbs

Have you always wanted to make your own herbal salve? Do you value plantain as a medicinal rather than a lawn weed to be killed with a toxic, polluting herbicide? Read about Wendy Green's herb gardens and herbal preparations in Joyce White's article "Growing a Good Life" in the spring issue of The Maine Organic Farmer & Gardener.
 
Pruning- - - -

Organic Orcharding Workshops

Renovating Old Apple Trees
10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Sat., March 18 - Freedom
Sat., March 25 - Beech Hill Farm, Mount Desert, and Cunningham Island, Newcastle
Fee: $50; $35 for MOFGA members
Please bring your own bag lunch
Register here.

Do you have any old trees on your land that you would like to bring back into production? Attend this workshop and learn to renovate and upkeep your heritage trees. Participants should dress appropriately and bring their pruners, loppers, saws and a bag lunch.

Pruning
10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Sat., March 25 - MOFGA's Common Ground Education Center, Unity
Fee: $50; $35 for MOFGA members
Please bring your own bag lunch
Designed for beginner to intermediate orchardists managing backyard plantings to larger orchards. Learn to prune fruit trees to encourage vigorous growth, heavy fruit set, and quality fruit yield. Scionwood collection and storage will also be covered. Confirmation and directions will be sent a week prior to the start of the workshop. Please keep in mind that pre-registration and payment are required and this course fills up quickly!

Grafting Fruit Trees
10 a.m. to 3 p.m. 
Sat., April 1 - College of the Atlantic, Bar Harbor 
Sat., April 8 - MOFGA's Common Ground Education Center, Unity 
Fee: $50; $40 for MOFGA members 
Please bring your own bag lunch
Learn to propagate and reproduce your favorite fruit tree varieties. Instructors will explain how to graft, demonstrate Whip and Tongue and T-Budding, as well as outdoor grafting (top working) of established trees. Participants will graft trees to take home and plant. Care for the new trees will also be discussed. Please bring a grafting knife and a bag lunch.
 
MGFN- - - -

Maine Grass Farmers Network Conference
March 18 - Saturday, 8:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
Alfond Campus, Kennebec Valley Community College, Hinckley

The Maine Grass Farmers Network 2017 conference will feature nationally known keynote speakers: Dr. Fred Provenza from Utah State University, a noted animal scientist and grazing behavior specialist, and Dr. Hue Karreman, author and veterinarian, along with his partner, Suzanne Nelson. Concurrent sessions will follow, with speakers including Dr. Tatiana Stanton from Cornell discussing parasite control in sheep and goats, and UMaine's new Extension livestock specialist, Dr. Colt Knight. FMI and to register: https://extension.umaine.edu/livestock/mgfn/conference/. FMI Rick Kersbergen richard.kersbergen@maine.edu, 207-342-5971 or MOFGA's Diane Schivera dianes@mofga.org
 
CSA- - - -

CSA Fair in Bangor         

On March 19, from 2:30 to 5 p.m., Bangor Greendrinks is sponsoring a Community Supported Agriculture Fair at the Sea Dog Brewing Company, 26 Front St., Bangor. Twelve farms, some MOFGA-certified organic, and one fisherman will participate in this free event. They include Cornerstone Farm, Fail Better Farm, Fisher Farm, Happytown Farm, Marr Pond, Mooshine Cattle Co., Nettie Fox Farm, Peacemeal Farm, Ripley Farm, Shalom Orchard, Snakeroot Farm, The Lobster Shack, and Wise Acres. Enjoy children's activities (part of the Maine Science Festival), bluegrass music, a raffle basket and a "Taste of the Market" food court.
 
Mining- - - -

Mining Hearings on Monday, March 20        

Several mining bills are before the Maine Legislature this session. MOFGA is supporting LD 820, An Act To Protect Maine's Clean Water and Taxpayers from Mining Pollution, and opposing LD 395, Resolve, Regarding Legislative Review of Chapter 200: Metallic Mineral Exploration, Advanced Exploration and Mining, a Major Substantive Rule of the DEP. The Committee on Environment and Natural Resources will hold public hearings on these and other mining bills beginning at 9 a.m. on Monday, March 20, in the Cross Building, Room 216, in Augusta. See http://legislature.maine.gov/committee/#Committees/ENR. You can also email comments to daniel.tartakoff@legislature.maine.gov or Steven.Langlin@legislature.maine.gov.
 
Northeastern- - - -

The Northeastern University contingent on Alternative Spring Break at MOFGA. 
Photo by Anna Libby


Thank you to Northeastern University Alternative Spring Break!

Last week MOFGA hosted an alternative spring break group from Northeastern University. We'd like to thank them for all their help painting the farmhouse, stocking the freezer, tapping trees and starting seedlings.
 
CGCF- - - -

Youth Enterprise Zone Common Ground Country Fair Applications Available  
 
Applications for a booth in the Youth Enterprise Zone and Youth Enterprise Transition Zone of the 2017 Common Ground Country Fair are now being accepted! The online application is available on the Youth Enterprise Zone webpage. The deadline is March 24. If you need assistance or have questions, please contact Eleanor at 568-4142 or commonground@mofga.org.  
 
Exchange- - - -

Seed Swap & Scion Exchange    
March 26
MOFGA's Common Ground Education Center, Unity
10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Gardeners and orchardists are invited to bring their seeds, scionwood and cuttings to share and participate in educational workshops. FREE, no registration required! Schedule of speakers and activities.  
 
School- - - -

Rescheduled: Maine Vegetable & Fruit School       

Due to the last winter storm, the 2017 Maine Vegetable & Fruit School will be held from on Monday, March 27, at Seasons Event & Conference Center in Portland and on Friday, March 31, at the Bangor Motor Inn Conference Center. FMI: https://extension.umaine.edu/highmoor/blog/2017/01/25/maine-vegetable-and-fruit-school-2017/. Preregistration is required. Contact Pam St. Peter with registration inquiries at 207-933-2100 or pamela.stpeter@maine.edu.
 
GYOG- - - -


Grow Your Own Organic Garden
        

Join us on April 5, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., to learn how to grow your own organic garden! At 30-plus locations statewide, MOFGA farmers and gardeners will present this workshop covering soil science, composting, weed control and more. Register through your local Adult Education program. FMI:
http://mofga.org/Events/GrowYourOwnOrganicGarden/tabid/295/Default.aspx 
 
Earth-Day- - - -

Celebrate Earth Day with MOFGA   
Help us clean up the grounds for spring! We'll celebrate Earth Day on Saturday, April 22, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., with some volunteer projects at MOFGA's Common Ground Education Center in Unity. Everyone who lends a hand will get lunch and a T-shirt. All ages and experience levels are welcome. FMI and to RSVP: alibby@mofga.org

Plant Trees at the Maine Heritage Orchard

The Maine Heritage Orchard is a ten-acre preservation orchard on the MOFGA grounds in Unity. It is currently home to 280 apple and pear varieties traditionally grown in Maine. On Earth Day, April 22, we will plant 30 more varieties. The orchard is planted on a terraced, reclaimed gravel pit and is managed using innovative, organic orchard practices. For information about planting trees with us, RSVP to alibby@mofga.org. For more information on the Maine Heritage Orchard, visit our web page on MOFGA.org or email us at apples@mofga.org  
 
 Bowl- - - -

Empty Bowl Supper on April 22
Please note date change
 
The MOFGA-El Salvador Sistering Committee's annual Empty Bowl Supper fundraiser will be held on Saturday, April 22 (not April 29 as previously planned), at 6 p.m. at the United Farmers Market of Belfast, at 18 Spring Street. The supper is not at the Unitarian Universalist Church this year because of construction there; we deeply appreciate the donation of that space for the past decade-plus. Please join us for our biggest fundraiser of the year and for delicious soups served in bowls made by expert Maine craftspeople. We'll also have breads and desserts. Anyone who would like to donate bowls may leave them at the MOFGA office or contact jenglish@tidewater.net. Thank you for supporting MOFGA's connection with our herman@s in El Salvador!
 
Meat- - - -

New England Meat Conference   

MOFGA is helping to set up the New England Meat Conference, which will take place on April 28-29 at The Radisson Manchester Downtown, Manchester, N.H. Explore how to continue growing the New England meat economies, continue developing robust infrastructure and foster business relationships. With over 25 educational sessions, hands-on workshops, and the illustrious Meat Ball, the event offers many opportunities to learn from and network among local and national leaders. FMI and tickets: http://www.newenglandmeatconference.com/conference 
 
Kiva- - - -

$10,000 No-Interest Loans Available through Kiva.org

MOFGA has teamed up with Collective Commitments, a new social enterprise working in Maine, to help you access 0% interest loans from Kiva.org for any business purpose. Patricia Pinto, Collective Commitments Founder, is available to answer your questions, and help you through the entire process - patricia@collectivecommitments.org, (207) 650-4430. You can also start the application on your own via this link: http://us.kiva.org/collectivecommitments/
 
Soil- - - -

Keep the Soil in Organic    

Check out this 5-minute Rally In The Valley video - about keeping soil in organic agriculture. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZfemOR_47YE For more about this issue, see Eric Sideman's article "Hydroponic Growing: Can It Be Called Organic?" in the fall 2016 issue of The Maine Organic Farmer & Gardener. 
 
Research- - - -

Research Survey on Biodiversity and Organic Farming     

A new research study, "Biodiversity and Organic Farming in the United States," led by Carolyn Dimitri, based at New York University, needs the input of certified organic growers nationwide. The study will gather information about opportunities to measure or increase biodiversity in organic farming. Certified organic farmers willing to participate in the study can fill out the online survey, which should take about 15-20 minutes to complete. You can take the survey at:
https://nyu.qualtrics.com/SE/?SID=SV_b7T4VJMyUZU3p5z

 
EventsEvents in Maine and Beyond - Mark Your Calendar!


March 18 - Maine Grass Farmers Network Conference. Keynote speaker Fred Provenza on grazing animal behavior and its link to soil health. Registration and conference details are available on-line at https://extension.umaine.edu/livestock/mgfn/conference/. FMI Rick Kersbergen richard.kersbergen@maine.edu, 207-342-5971 or MOFGA's Diane Schivera dianes@mofga.org

March 18 - Organic Orcharding Workshop: Renovating Old Trees. Freedom, Maine. Do you have any old trees on your land that you would like to bring back into production? Attend this workshop and learn to renovate and upkeep your heritage trees. Register here.

March 20 - Hunger & Nutrition Farm Bill Listening Session with Congresswoman Chellie Pingree. 9-11 a.m., Rines Auditorium, Portland Public Library. RSVP required at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/hunger-nutrition-farm-bill-listening-session-w-congresswoman-pingree-tickets-32503236054. Space is limited.

March 20 - Deadline for veterans to apply for The Farmer Veteran Fellowship Fund, which assists veterans in their beginning years of farming or ranching, in the form of items that make a critical difference in launching a young farm business.

March 23 - 10th Annual Maine Greenhouses "Best Practices" Workshop. 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., Snell Family Farm, 1000 River Road (ME 112), Buxton, Maine. FMI: Kathy Murray, 207-287-7616

March 25 - Organic Orcharding Workshop: Pruning. MOFGA's Common Ground Education Center, Unity. Learn to prune fruit trees to encourage vigorous growth, heavy fruit set, and quality fruit yield. Workshop is geared towards beginners and experienced growers. Pre-register here (required).

March 25 - Organic Orcharding Workshop: Renovating Old Trees. Two locations: Mt. Desert, Maine, and Newcastle (Cunningham Island), Maine. Do you have any old trees on your land that you would like to bring back into production? Attend this workshop and learn to renovate and upkeep your heritage trees. Register here.

March 26 - Seed Swap & Scion Exchange. 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., MOFGA's Common Ground Education Center, Unity. Gardeners and orchardists are invited to bring their seeds, scionwood and cuttings to share and participate in educational workshops. Free! Schedule of speakers and activities.

March 26 - Maine Maple Sunday. Participating Maine Maple producers (including some organic producers) offer demonstrations, sugarbush tours, activities and samplings of maple products. Information.

April 1 (April 2 snow date) - Grafting workshop with MOFGA's C.J. Walke at the Abbott Town Office. Sponsored by the Piscataquis County Soil and Water Conservation District. FMI: http://www.piscataquisswcd.org

April 1 - Organic Orcharding Workshop: Grafting Fruit Trees. 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. College of the Atlantic, Bar Harbor, Maine. Registration fee: $50; $40 for MOFGA members. Register here.

April 5 - 3rd Annual Source Sustainability Awards. Pineland Farms, New Gloucester, Maine. Winners of the 2017 Russell Libby Agricultural Scholarships will be announced as part of the event. For event details and tickets go to: sourceawards2017.eventbrite.com

April 5 - Grow Your Own Organic Garden Classes. 6 to 9 p.m., locations throughout the state. An evening course designed to provide gardeners with essential skills and knowledge needed to make a transition from conventional to organic gardening. Directory of class locations.

April 7 - 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

April 8 - MOFGA Organic Orcharding Workshop: Grafting Fruit Trees. 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. MOFGA's Common Ground Education Center, Unity, Maine. Registration fee: $50; $40 for MOFGA members. Register here.

April 8 - UMaine Cooperative Extension and Waldo County Extension Association's Rural Living Day. Several MOFGA staff are involved in this event. Mount View High School, 577 Mount View Rd., Thorndike. https://extension.umaine.edu/waldo/rld/

April 15 - MOFGA Organic Orcharding Workshop: Organic Orcharding 101 with Michael Phillips. 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., MOFGA's Common Ground Education Center, Unity. Please bring a bag lunch. Join Michael Phillips, author of The Apple Grower, for a comprehensive exploration of organic disease and insect strategies. Register here.

April 22 - Celebrate Earth Day with MOFGA. 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., MOFGA's Common Ground Education Center in Unity. RSVP: alibby@mofga.org

April 22 - Maine Heritage Orchard Spring Tree Planting at MOFGA. 9 a.m. to noon. RSVP: alibby@mofga.org

April 22 - MOFGA-El Salvador Sistering Committee Empty Bowl Supper. 6 p.m., United Farmers Market of Belfast, 18 Spring Street, Belfast. More information

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

 

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