Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association

MOFGA's New Home
At the 1996 Fair, our "Permanent Home" tent was filled with enthusiasm and ideas. This year, we hope you'll visit us at our tent, next to the MOFGA booth at the Main Gate. You'll see that we've been working hard over the past year to turn our ideas into reality.

Nellie Davis, Doing Her Best
By Jane Lamb
"The garden is for health of mind, body and soul," says Nellie Davis, who has been nurturing all three in her Lornell (for "The Lord and Nellie") Gardens at Bean's Corner in North Jay for almost 25 years.

Hancock Organic Growers Cooperative Seeks Strength Through Unity
By Russell Libby
What do you do when you keep running into the same farmers while you're delivering to the local restaurant trade? Often, you work hard to try to build better connections with the chef so that you can be sure that your produce is in demand. However, when your competition is mostly your friends, you might try another approach.

University-Based CSA Matches Students’ and Consumers’ Needs
By Kris Sader
Radishes went quick!” I hear Mark Guzzi say as I round the corner of the Quonset hut building in mid-June to view the first offerings of the season of the Black Bear Food Guild Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) project. The Guild, located at the University of Maine Sustainable Agriculture Research Center at Rogers Farm on Bennoch Road in Stillwater, is in its third year and is as successful as the bountiful crops it grows. How did it start?

On the Virtues of the Autumn Olive
By Hector Black
Autumn olive (Elaeagnus umbellata) is an attractive plant. It grows to about 12 to 15 feet at maturity and in spring is covered with lots of very fragrant, cream-colored flowers, which bees love.

BPC Widens Focus on At-Home Applicators
From Communicator, Maine Board of Pesticides Control, Paul V. Gregory, Editor, April 22, 1997.
Walt Kelly’s cartoon character Pogo best identified who misuses pesticides most in Maine: “We have met the enemy and they is us.” Us, of course, refers to the public. John and Jane Q. have access to thousands of general use pesticide products sold over the counter in hardware, bargain and garden stores. Data suggesting how these pesticides are used both support Pogo’s observation and give BPC (Board of Pesticides Control) members cause to intensify public education efforts.

Did You Eat Your Petunia Genes Today? Only Monsanto Knows For Sure!
By Jean English
We are in the midst of a genetic revolution, with some new feat of genetic engineering being reported in the news every week or, sometimes, every day. While some supporters of genetically engineered foods would try to have us believe that this new technology is just traditional breeding at a faster pace, they are wrong. Never in traditional breeding, for example, could chicken and moth genes be incorporated into potatoes, flounder genes into tomatoes, or soil bacterial genes into herbicide resistant crops.

Biotech Industry Wants Organic Label
By Peter Downs
Free speech is a hallowed right in America, but maybe not for organic farmers and gardeners. The federal government is considering rules that could let your chemically dependent competitors label their products as “natural” or “organic.” All they have to do is exchange their chemicals for new seed engineered to produce plants that make their own insecticide. Additional rules will bar you from legally saying that any difference exists between their crop and yours.

Nitrogen Fertilizer … A Blessing or Disaster?
By Eric Sideman, PH.D.
Ever since humans began to cultivate food, nitrogen has been the most common limit to crop yields. Modern agriculture has answered this limit with synthetic production of nitrogen fertilizers, which has greatly increased global food production and has supported an astonishing growth in the world’s population. However, the environmental problems are just being realized and are not yet being seriously dealt with.

Sage – Pungent, Hardy and Irresistible to Bees
By Ellie MacDougall
Around the world, sage has diversified itself into more than 750 different varieties, from a powerful hallucinogen used in South American magical rites to the common annual sage whose deep green leaves and red flower spikes brighten the summer flower garden.

Chamomile: A Comforting and Healing Herb – and a Soothing Back-to-School Remedy
By Deb Soule
The chamomile most commonly used by herbalists is the annual variety often referred to as German chamomile. Its Latin name, previously Matricaria chamomilla, is now Matricaria recutita. Chamomile belongs to the Compositae (Daisy) family.

Grow Your Own: Mesclun
By Roberta Bailey
The National Gardening Bureau deemed 1997 the "Year of the Mesclun" and from my vantage point in Palermo, they called it right. The cool spring and well-timed rains of summer created ideal conditions for growing salad greens. The year is not over yet: A bed of mesclun seeded in September could feed you until spring.

Alternative Fungicides for Mildew
Vinegar Spray
Trends in Landscaping
Lure Beneficials to Your Garden
A Simple, Inexpensive Pond
Boiling Water Kills Weeds
Woods End Products Finding Increasing Uses
Hair as Fertilizer

More on Mules
Why Expand Agriculture?
Insurance Racketeering Woes


Minimize Pesticide Use: Keep Highmoor Open
By Jean English
People in Maine must minimize their use of pesticides. That is state policy, since a bill originating with MOFGA passed during the last legislative session. The law relates to commercial growers, lawn care companies, homeowners … everyone.
Minimize Synthetic Nitrogen Use
Sue Farrell

Reviews & Resources
CD: The Guide to a Sustainable Future
Video: Vegetable Farmers and Their Weed Control Machines

MOF&G Cover Fall 1997

News & Events

Maine BPC
Renews Emergency Exemption for Strawberry Herbicide

1997 Officers and Staff

Fair News
Celebrate Rural Living with MOFGA!
1997 Area Coordinators
Tribute to Newt Cochran
Volunteer Donald Ketcham Recovering