Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association


Bulletin Board

FEBRUARY 14, 2014

A CSA Share for $5?!
Maybe! Several Maine CSA farms are participating in the MOFGA-El Salvador Sistering Committee's fundraising raffle. Tickets are available for $5 each or six for $25. The drawing will take place in March 2014. For a list of participating farms and information on buying tickets, please visit MOFGA's online Country Store. 

Photo: Cashew fruit on a Salvadoran farm. MOFGA's El Salvador Sistering Committee works with groups like MOFGA that are promoting ecological agriculture there. 
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MOFGA Benefit at The Flatbread Company in Portland!
Come join us for a MOFGA Benefit Night at The Flatbread Company in Portland on Tuesday, March 4! A portion of sales on flatbreads sold between 5 and 9 p.m. will support MOFGA. We look forward to seeing you and enjoying delicious food, local beer and lively discussion. The Flatbread Company is located at 72 Commercial Street, on the waterfront in Portland; See you there!

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CSA Fairs 2014

These events are part celebration and part education, as local farmers, fishermen and other food producers tell community members how to enjoy local foods and support local businesses in a meaningful way.

Each location will have plenty of local flavor, whether live local music, tastings featuring local foods, sales of food and other products from local farms and businesses, film screenings and more.

Auburn: Feb. 28 - 4:30 to 6:30 p.m.
Auburn Public Library. Contact: Martin Gagnon, 207-333-6640, X2025

Augusta: Feb. 28 - 2:00 to 5:00 p.m.
Viles Arboretum Conference Room, 153 Hospital St. Contact: Mark DesMeules, 207-626-7989

Belfast: March 2 - 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.
Troy Howard Middle School, 173 Lincolnville Ave. Contact: Kate Harris, 207-338-9509

Hallowell: March 2 - 1:00 to 4:00 p.m.
St. Matthew's Episcopal Church, 20 Union St. Contact: Jessica Gorton, 522-5536

Norway: March 1 - 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
First Universalist Church of Norway, 477 Main St. Contact: Jessica McMahon, (207) 743-9044

The Pickup at 42 Court St. Contact: Sarah Smith, 399-4923

Check the CSA Fair page at for updates.

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MOFGA's Organic Orcharding Workshop - Pruning Fruit Trees
March 8 - 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Three locations: Blue Hill with Phillip Norris; Durham with Dave Colson and C.J. Walke; MOFGA Education Center, Unity, with John Bunker
Learn to prune fruit trees to encourage vigorous growth, heavy fruit set and quality fruit yield. Collection of scion wood and storage will also be discussed. Workshop details.
Registration on the MOFGA Country Store.

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MOFGA's Organic Farming Short Course
Organic Farming: Principles and Practice
March 27 & April 3 - 10:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. both days
Viles Room, Viles Arboretum, 153 Hospital Street, Augusta
Our two-day course, Organic Farming: Principles and Practice, is designed to provide farmers with a strong background in soils, weeds and pest management, enabling them to make good management decisions. Instructor: Eric Sideman, MOFGA's Vegetable Specialist. Guest lecturers, including local farmers, will also speak and join the discussion.

$75 individual; $30 additional person; $30 apprentice/student; FREE journeypersons; $45 per single-day registration

Course registration.

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Waldo County Trails Coalition to Lead Hike in Unity
Saturday, February 22, 10 a.m. to noon
Join the Waldo County Trails Coalition for a hike on Saturday, February 22, from 10 a.m. to about noon. The hike will start at the kiosk at MOFGA's field on Crosby Brook Road, next to (and on the same side of the road as) the Northern Solstice Alpaca Farm, and will go to Quaker Hill Road. A shuttle will be available at Quaker Hill Road to transport people back to MOFGA at the end of the hike. Depending on snow or ice cover, hikers may want to bring snowshoes, or cleats for hiking boots. FMI:, Waldo Trails website, Facebook page.

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Jan Goranson (top) and Rob Johanson at their diversified farm in Dresden

Know Your Organic Producers!

Meet Rob Johanson and Jan Goranson of Goranson Farm in Dresden. These farmers raise MOFGA certified organic vegetables, herbs, cut flowers, seedlings, seed potatoes, strawberries, hay, pasture ... and even edible flowers!

They market through their farm stand, a CSA, senior farm shares, farmers' markets (Bath, Boothbay and Damariscotta), natural food stores, restaurants, Whole Foods, Crown O' Maine Organic Cooperative and Farm Fresh Connection

Rob and Jan have long supported MOFGA through talks at our Farmer to Farmer Conference and tours of their farm. 

Please support MOFGA certified organic farmers and producers!

MOFGA Lumber For Sale

Planning on building this summer? FSC certified logs harvested from the MOFGA woodlot this winter are going to a Thorndike sawmill to make rough pine boards for your goat barn, chicken coop, sauna, storage shed, horse hovel or whatever project you may have in mind.  Contact Sam Brown ( or 277-4221) for more information. Photo: Eli Berry with the logs harvested from the MOFGA woodlot.

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Concerned About Climate?
Growers, gardeners and other climate-concerned folks: The Climate Solutions 2014 Expo and Summit, cosponsored by MOFGA, will be held at the Augusta Civic Center on March 12. If you can mount a display, help out, share experience as a presenter (or as part of the policy Summit) or know others who can, please contact or We want a strong showing on the food-producing piece of this challenge. Please share this message! Visit the Climate Solutions website.
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2014 Common Ground Country Fair Poster

This year's 2014 Common Ground Country Fair poster features medicinal herbs. The artist, Kate Seaver, is a MOFGA journeyperson and co-operator of Up-Beet Farm in Porter, a MOFGA certified organic market garden. Her art highlights a celebrated aspect of the Common Ground Country Fair, which features more than 1,400 exhibitors and speakers. This year's Fair will occur on September 19, 20 and 21.
Every year MOFGA holds a poster contest and welcomes all Maine residents and MOFGA members to enter submissions. Guidelines and application for the 2015 Fair.
For more information, please contact Fair director April Boucher at
Canadian Strawberry, another beautiful Maine heritage apple variety.

Donate to MOFGA and Get a Maine Heritage Apple Tree!

For every $25 you contribute to MOFGA, you can receive a 2-year-old, grafted, MOFGA certified organic apple tree from Blackbird Rise in Palermo as thanks for your support! Trees will be available for pick-up at MOFGA's April 12, 2014, orchard planting event. There you can learn how to plant and care for your tree. More details.

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Organic Grower Information Meetings in Aroostook and Washington Counties    

MOFGA Certification Services LLC is hosting four information meetings for farmers who are interested in learning more about organic methods or who want to know more about MOFGA Organic Certification. The meetings coming up are being held in Littleton (Aroostook County) and Trescott (Washington County). Each meeting features presentations about soil health, parasites, food safety and organic certification, and includes a facilitated hour of discussions and questions. Register online. For more details visit our Organic Grower Meeting page on 

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Upcoming eOrganic Farming Webinars - Free!
Feb. 18 - Anaerobic Soil Disinfestation to Control Soil Borne Pathogens: Current Research Findings and On-farm Implementation
Feb. 25 and 27 - Two-Part Webinar Series on Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Soil Quality in Long-term Integrated and Transitional Reduced Tillage Organic Systems
March 4 - Using Contans (Coniothyrium minitans) for White Mold Management on Organic Farms
March 13 - Organic Blackberry Production
Registration link.

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More Maine Meat Survey
Through the More Maine Meat Project, MOFGA is working with the Maine Sustainable Agriculture Society and Cooperative Extension to assess and improve infrastructure and opportunities for livestock producers and everyone involved in the meat industry. As part of this effort, UMaine is surveying producers to better understand the needs and opportunities within the industry and to implement an appropriate plan of action. Please help by completing a 20-minute survey. Some questions relate to access to certified organic slaughterhouses and processing. Answers to these questions will be very useful when we approach processors to encourage organic certification. Make your voice heard!

Those who choose to may enter a random drawing for one of four $50 prizes. Once the survey is completed (you do not have to answer all questions), you will be instructed on how to enter the drawing. Your responses to the survey will not be linked to your entry in the drawing.
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March 7 Deadline for Pre-proposals for USDA NRCS Conservation Innovation Grants
These are matching grants (at least 50 percent of the total cost of the project must come from non-federal matching funds, including cash and in-kind contributions provided by the grant recipient) to develop and accelerate conservation approaches and technologies on private agricultural and forest lands. Priority will be given to applications that relate to nutrient management, energy conservation, soil health, air quality, climate change, wildlife, economics, sociology, environmental markets, food safety, historically underserved groups, or assessments of past CIG projects. More information.

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Free Help Available for Applying for Affordable Health Insurance
Do you need affordable health insurance? If you own your own farm, need coverage for yourself and your family, are an employee looking for coverage or a member of the general public, the Maine Migrant Health Program offers free assistance. Its certified application counselors across the state can meet with you to provide information on the Affordable Care Act; explain discounts available to low- and moderate-income individuals and families; help you apply for coverage and choose a health insurance plan. The deadline to enroll is March 31, 2014. To schedule an appointment or for more information, call Liz Charles at 207-441-1633 or Eduardo Cortes at 207-485-5553.

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Please Nominate MOFGA for a Bangor Savings Bank Foundation Grant

Voting ends Feb. 28 
Bangor Savings Foundation will give a total of $100,000 to 68 local non-profit organizations, based on the number of votes each organization gets from Maine citizens. You can help MOFGA by writing in MOFGA in the Waldo County category on the ballot - and then invite your friends, neighbors and colleagues to do the same. Vote for MOFGA. Thank you!


Events in Maine and Beyond - Mark Your Calendar!

February 14 - Food and Farm Film Festival -The Real Dirt on Farmer John. Friday, 7:00 p.m., F.A.R.M.S. Community Kitchen, 323 Main St., Damariscotta. Director Taggart Siegel of Collective Eye made the film in a most unusual way - shooting farmer John Peterson over 25-years of their evolving friendship. Free admission. For more information, go to, Community Kitchen, Food and Farm Film Festival.

February 15 - Fruit Tree Class.
10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Highmoor Farm, Monmouth. Focus on growing apples for commercial sale. Topics include pruning, fertilizers, fruit thinning, insect pests, diseases and spraying. Pruning demonstration (weather permitting). Bring a lunch for the one-hour break at noon. Free, but please preregister by contacting Renae Moran at 207-933-2100 or Information. 

February 15-17 - NOFA-Vt. Winter Conference: Growing Outside the Box.
University of Vermont, Burlington. The NOFA Vermont Winter Conference is a highlight of the winter for Vermont's farmers, gardeners, homesteaders, and enthusiastic eaters. Includes "Action Planning for Farm Resilience in a Changing Climate" and three more Monday Intensives. Registration. More information on the NOFA-VT website.

February 17 & 18 - MOFGA Business Planning Workshop.
Common Ground Education Center, Unity. Join us for a day-long workshop with Richard Wiswall, owner/operator of Cate Farm in Vermont, and author of The Organic Farmer's Business Handbook. Contact the MOFGA office about registration.

February 18 - Organic Orcharding Workshop.
6-8 p.m., Belfast Free Library. Presented by C.J. Walke, MOFGA's organic orchardist. Free presentation about organic orcharding techniques to grow apples, pears, plums and peaches, focusing on soil requirements and methods of tracking and trapping fruit pests. No-spray pest management and how various materials boost the health of fruit trees. Plenty of time for discussion. Co-sponsors: MOFGA, Belfast Free Library and the Belfast Co-op. Free.
February 21-23 - Camden Conference: The Global Politics of Food and Water.
February 26-27 - Sustaining the Living Landscape, Ecological Landscaping Assoc., Springfield, Mass. Keynote: Dr. John Todd, "Healing the Waters: A Tale of Ecology and Living Technologies." Brochure.

February 27 - MOFGA Organic Grower Meeting. 1:30 to 5 pm, Southern Aroostook Agriculture Museum, Littleton. Details. Registration.

February 27 - Spring Into Action: Maintaining a Healthy (and Growing) Flock. Thursday, 2 p.m. EST, 1 p.m. CST, 12 noon MST, 11 a.m. PST, USDA APHIS Free Webinar and Twitter Chat. Featuring Dr. Jo Anna Quinn, USDA poultry health specialist, Andy Schneider, "The Chicken Whisperer,"  Dr. Casey Barton Behravesh, CDC public health specialist. Information (pdf). Registration. 

March 4 - MOFGA Benefit Night at The Flatbread Company. Tuesday, 5-9 p.m., 72 Commercial Street, on the waterfront in Portland. Delicious food, local beer and lively discussion. Website.

March 4-6 - International Garlic Symposium. Role of Garlic in Cardiovascular Disease Prevention, Metabolic Syndrome and Immunology. Dana Point, Calif. Details.

March 7 - Northern New England Nursery Conference. 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., Urban Forestry Center, Portsmouth, N.H. Cost $25 (includes lunch). Program includes a thoughtful look at the ecology of landscape plantings; information about pollinator gardens; a panel discussion about managing risk; how to safeguard your landscape or nursery crew and yourself from tick-borne diseases; and more. Registration. FMI: Dr. Lois Berg Stack, University of Maine, 207-581-2949 or
March 7-8 - New England Meat Conference, Concord, N.H. Details.

March 8 - MOFGA's Organic Orcharding Workshop - Pruning Fruit Trees. 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Blue Hill with Phillip Norris; Durham with Dave Colson and C.J. Walke; MOFGA, Unity, with John Bunker. Details. Registration.

March 8 - Washington County Food Summit. Snow date March 15. Information.

March 10 - UM Extension Vegetable and Fruit School.
8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Seasons Conference Center, Portland. Registration $35.00, includes lunch. Preregistration is required by Feb. 21, 2014. Agenda and registration.

March 11 - UM Extension Vegetable and Fruit School. 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Bangor Motor Inn Conference Center, 701 Hogan Rd., Bangor. Registration $35.00, includes lunch. Preregistration is required by Feb. 21, 2014. Agenda and registration.
March 12 - Climate Solutions 2014 Expo and Summit, Augusta Civic Center.

March 13 - MOFGA Organic Grower Meeting. 1:30 to 5 pm, Cobscook Community Learning Center in Trescott (Washington County). Details.Registration.


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