Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association


Bulletin Board

JUNE 20, 2014

Hamilton Farm LLC - Barred Owl Creamery & Catering in Whitefield at the Common Ground Country Fair

Know Your Organic Producers!

Meet Patti Hamilton of Hamilton Farm LLC - Barred Owl Creamery & Catering in Whitefield. Patti produces MOFGA certified organic vegetables, herbs, fruit, flowers, meats and cheeses, which she sells through her CSA, at the Common Ground Country Fair, at The Great Maine Apple Day, the Sweetgrass Winter Holiday Bazaar, to Sheepscot General Store and to the Alna General Store.         

Please support MOFGA certified organic farmers and producers!

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MOFGA Farm Training Projects Coming Up
These informal tours and presentations, most followed by a potluck, are aimed at MOFGA apprentices but are open to the public. Please bring a place setting and a dish or something fresh from the farm to share.
Coming up:
Ecological Weed Management
Monday, June 23, 5 p.m. at Black Kettle Farm, Lyman
Tuesday, June 24, 5 p.m. at Morning Dew Farm, Newcastle
Weed control is a primary challenge in organic farming systems. This workshop will offer ecological and cultural approaches to weed management with staff from MOFGA and farmer expertise. It will also feature a primer on weed control using the various forms of cultivation equipment available to vegetable growers. More information.
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MOFGA Volunteer Work Day - We Need Your Help!
* On Monday, June 23, we would love some extra hands as we spruce up our grounds and clean our camping area to prepare for the Permaculture Convergence. Enjoy some time working outside. We will begin at 9:30 a.m. and will have T-shirts for all of our volunteers.
If anyone would like to help with any or all of the events, please contact MOFGA Volunteer Coordinator Anna Libby at 568-4142 or
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Organic Valley Farm Discovery

June 21, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Nezinscot Farm, Turner, Maine
Who's YOUR Farmer? Come visit an organic farm and meet your local Organic Valley farm family. Walk the pastures, make butter, feed baby calves and learn more about where delicious organic food comes from. To RSVP for your space on the tour, for driving directions, and to "meet" your farmer hosts by video, please visit the Organic Valley website.
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More Maine Food on Maine Plates

The Maine Food Strategy's 2014 Consumer Survey Report is sparking conversations about the food system within Maine. MFS is holding free briefings for community and industry leaders to explore findings on an in-depth scale in a small group setting and to help identify opportunities and ways to strengthen relationships.

Join a briefing!

Thursday, June 26, 3:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
St. Mary's Nutrition Center, 208 Bates Street, Lewiston
Co-hosted by St. Mary's Nutrition Center and the Good Food Council of Lewiston-Auburn

Tuesday, July 8, 10 a.m. to 11 a.m.
Coastal Enterprises, Inc., 2 Portland Fish Pier, Suite 206, Portland
Hosted by Coastal Enterprises, Inc.

Wednesday, July 16, 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Northern Maine Development Commission, 11 West Presque Isle Road, Caribou
Hosted by Aroostook Partnership for Progress

Registration is free but required. To reserve, email
FMI and to view the report, please visit
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MOFGA Orcharding Workshop
June 28 - Summer Orchard Care Saturday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. 
496 Davis Road, Durham, Maine  
Instructors: C.J. Walke and Dave Colson
Cost: $30; $25 student/apprentice; free for MOFGA journeypersons

Have you thought about planting fruit trees, but you weren't sure how to grow them organically? Or do you have fruit trees in the ground and you would like to learn organic cultivation methods? If so, join C.J. Walke, MOFGA's organic orchardist, in Durham, where he will present organic methods for growing tree fruit. C.J. will discuss soil and nutrient requirements, explain organic pest and disease control and provide ample time to answer questions and concerns about cultivating fruit trees organically. Please remember to bring a lunch. Register here.
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Waldo County Trails Coalition to Lead To Lead 8 Saturday Summer Trail Walks in Unity

Walk with your kids and your friends! Walk for your health! Walk to explore and to enjoy the outdoors! This summer the Waldo County Trails Coalition is leading eight Saturday trail walks from 10 a.m. to about noon. Walks will start at the trailhead across from Inland Family Care in Unity. Two hikes will feature activities for the entire family, rather than distance covered. Another one will introduce participants to geocaching - using a Global Positioning System (GPS) receiver or mobile device and other navigational techniques to hide and seek items, called "geocaches" or "caches."

For more information about the summer walks, please see the Events tab at or call 207-877-5880. 
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Eric Evans, Breeding Coordinator for the Maine Chapter of TACF, and artist, Coreysha Stone.
Art Show: "Bringing Back the Giants of the Forest"

During the month of June the Sheepscot General, 98 Townsend Rd., Whitefield, is hosting "Bringing Back the Giants of the Forest", an art show to benefit The American Chestnut Foundation's Maine Chapter. Artist Coreysha Stone has a compilation of acrylic paintings depicting the American Chestnut tree, burs, nuts, and leaves throughout the seasons. The show will culminate with a final presentation titled, The Return of the American Chestnut, by Eric Evans, the TACF representative on Sunday June 29, from 2-4pm, and is open to the public for free.

The show will focus on the nearing completion of a breeding program that is developing blight resistant AC trees, with hopes to restore populations beginning in 2020. Historically the AC tree has had a profound impact on ecosystems from Maine to Florida, and after the blight took effect in the 1900's this extremely valuable resource was decimated. Since 1983 TACF has been coordinating a 6-generation breeding programs to develop regionally-adapted disease-resistant chestnuts, and is now developing restoration program. To find out more about American Chestnut efforts visit

For questions about the show and chestnut presentation contact: Sheepscot General at 549-5185.
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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
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2013 Common Ground Country Fair items are now on sale!

MOFGA Country Store SALE!
Celebrating 38 years of the Common Ground Country Fair with a 38% OFF SALE on all 2013 Fair Oxen T-shirts, aprons, tote bags, posters and more!
See the sale items at the MOFGA Country Store
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CSP Contract Renewal Process Begins Next Month

The USDA Natural Resource Conservation (NRCS) will begin accepting applications to re-enroll in the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) on July 11, 2014. This renewal option is specifically for farmers and ranchers who enrolled in CSP initially in 2010. Details.
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Farmers' Guide to Reducing the Legal Risks of a Food Safety Incident

This guide from Farm Commons will help farmers understand some of the food safety risks that exist, how to reduce the likelihood of the risks materializing and how to position the farm for recovery if the risks do materialize. After reading this guide, farmers will know how personal injury lawsuits function, how contracts can create additional liability, the legal aspects of a recall and the potential for government involvement in a food safety outbreak. Action steps conclude each section, enabling the farmer to move forward with protecting the farm. Details.
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A Reminder from Mary Yurlina of MOFGA Certification Services LLC

This is a reminder that the deadline for submitting an application to get certified this year is coming right up for farms - on June 30. If you've been thinking about getting certified but have questions, give us a call or an email. The federal cost share program is in full swing for both farmers AND processors this year ... which means you get 75 percent of your certification fees (up to $750) back once you get certified. Paperwork and other tidbits are posted online here.
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MOFGA Seeks Educational Programs Director

MOFGA is searching for a dynamic, organized and motivated individual to serve as Educational Programs Director. This job opening creates an outstanding opportunity to build on the success of MOFGA's educational programs and work with a fast growing environmental organization focusing on ecologically sound farming and gardening practices. Details.
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New Certification Assistant

Kristen Farrell is the new operations assistant for MOFGA Certification Services. She updates client records, helps with the website and is the phone and e-mail contact for the office. Kristen grew up in Groton, Massachusetts, and on the island of Kwajalein in the Republic of the Marshall Islands. She attended Providence College and Hartford Seminary and served in the Jesuit Volunteer Corps in Washington state. Kristen moved from Wisconsin to Maine in 2013. Believing in the importance of sense of place to personal and community health, she has made it a priority to learn about the ecology, history and culture of each region she has lived in. Kristen's passions include real food, genealogy, knitting, sewing, art, earth-centered spirituality and aromatherapy. A novice gardener and aspiring herbalist, she is excited to absorb the knowledge and energy of the MOFGA community. She currently lives in Waterville with her husband, Eric (who works at Unity College), and their daughter, Abigail.
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Summer Landscape Intern

Dan McKenna is our summer landscape intern. He came to MOFGA with other Northeastern University students over alternative spring break, and we're glad he's back! At Northeastern he is an environmental studies major with minors in sustainability and business. Dan helped build a pollinator hotel for the MOFGA grounds when he was here in the spring.
Events in Maine and Beyond - Mark Your Calendar!

Events sponsored by NOFA-Massachusetts

Events sponsored by NOFA-New Hampshire

Events sponsored by NOFA-Vermont

June 20-21 - Maine Fare, Belfast.  A two-day festival of good food and food for thought. Hosted by Maine Farmland Trust and Penobscot East Resource Center. MOFGA will have a table at Maine Fare on Friday, June 20. Details.

June 21 - Organic Valley Farm Discovery. 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Nezinscot Farm, Turner, Maine. Who's YOUR Farmer? Come visit an organic farm and meet your local Organic Valley farm family. Walk the pastures, make butter, feed baby calves and learn more about where delicious, organic food comes from. To RSVP for your space on the tour, for driving directions, and to "meet" your farmer hosts by video, please visit

June 22 - Maine Sail Freight.
6 p.m., Tranquility Grange, Lincolnville, presented by The Greenhorns, Penobscot Marine Museum, MOFGA, Maine Farmland Trust, Windjammers Association, the Boothbay Farmers' Market and Tranquility Grange. Panelists discuss their experience delivering cargo from Vermont to Manhattan last fall. A silent film, The Sam Levitt, a Maine sail freight project of the 1970s, will be shown, followed by a discussion. Potluck. FMI or to volunteer with setup, contact

June 22-25 - Revisioning Sustainability - Campuses as Catalysts for Regenerative Food Systems. UMass Amherst. Details.

June 23 - Volunteer Work Day at MOFGA. Monday. We would love some extra hands as we spruce up our grounds and clean our camping area to prepare for the Permaculture Convergence (July 4-6). Enjoy some time working outside. We will begin at 9:30 a.m. and will have T-shirts for all of our volunteers. Please contact MOFGA Volunteer Coordinator Anna Libby at 568-4142 or

June 26 - Public Hearing on the Maine Citizen Trade Policy Commission's 2014 Assessment. Thursday, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m., Room 220, Cross Office Building, Maine State House, Augusta. The Assessment presents information about the impact of international trade agreements on Maine laws, working conditions and business environment. A discussion will take place after the presentation.

June 26 - UMaine Sustainable Agriculture Twilight Tour - Sustainable Agriculture Research at Rogers Farm, Stillwater, Maine. 4 p.m. - weed walk with Eric Gallandt; 4:30 - registration; 5 to 7:45 - tours cover sustainable ag in Denmark; weed management, weed communities and climate change; plants to support native pollinators; alternative weed management strategies for vegetables; opportunities and challenges with fall-seeded crops; field pea varieties for livestock feed; incorporating wheat into organic forage rotations. No pre-registration required. Refreshments provided. 2 certified crop advisor credits and 1 pesticide credit will be offered. FMI: Ellen Mallory,, 207-581-2942.

June 28 - MOFGA's Organic Orcharding Workshop: Summer Orchard Care. Saturday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., 496 Davis Road, Durham, Maine. Instructors: CJ Walke and Dave Colson. Cost: $30 ($25 student/apprentice fee; free for JPs.) Registration.

July 4 - MOFGA's Common Ground radio show, 10 to 11 a.m., WERU, 89.9 and 99.9 FM and

July 4-6 - 2014 Northeast Permaculture Convergence. MOFGA's Common Ground Education Center. Details.

July 7 - Deadline to apply for USDA grants and combination grants and guaranteed loans for eligible farms and other rural businesses under the Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) for fiscal year 2014. Details.

July 23 - Slow Money Maine Gathering. 1 to 4 p.m., Viles Arboretum, Augusta. Details.

July 24-25 - Maine Grain Alliance Kneading Conference. Thursday 8 a.m. to Friday 5 p.m. Two-day conference fee is $300. (Includes delicious meals). Many participants arrive on Wednesday, July 23 and stay to attend the free Artisan Bread Fair on Saturday, July 26. Registration.

July 26 - Maine Artisan Bread Fair. Saturday, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Skowhegan State Fairgrounds. Free! Over 60 vendors. Parking $2. Details.

July 31 - Deadline to apply for USDA Rural Energy for American Program guaranteed loans for renewable energy system and energy efficiency improvement. Details.

August 9 - MOFGA's Organic Orcharding Workshop: Bud Grafting with Seth Yentes. 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., North Branch Farm, Monroe. Details.

August 13 - Conservation Farm Tour. 4 p.m., Good Dirt Garlic, 518 Fletcher Rd., Monticello, Maine. Learn about the diverse benefits of cover cropping sequences during this informal farm tour and discussion. The tour is free, but please RSVP to Katy Green at MOFGA if you plan to attend: or 568-4142.


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