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  You are here:  PublicationsBulletin BoardAugust 30 2013   
  

 

 

MAINE ORGANIC FARMERS AND GARDENERS ASSOCIATION

Bulletin Board

AUGUST 30, 2013

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Singing Nettle Farm
Lauren and Bill Errickson of Singing Nettle Farm at the Common Ground Country Fair.


Know Your Organic Producers!

Meet MOFGA certified organic farmers Lauren and Bill Errickson of Singing Nettle Farm in Brooks. Lauren and Bill live off the grid and farm using horse power. They sell mixed vegetables, culinary and medicinal herbs, edible and cut flowers, perennial nursery stock (specializing in edible and medicinal species), seed garlic and shallots. They market through their Singing Nettle Farm CSA, at Brooks "Hay Days," at the Common Ground Country Fair Farmers' Markets and the Brooks Park Boosters Farmers' Market, to RSU3, Fresh Off the Farm, Ralph's Cafe and Crosstrax Deli. They also do custom flower arrangements for weddings and events. Singing Nettle Farm on Facebook.

Please support MOFGA certified organic farmers and producers!

Search for local certified-organic food on MOFGA.net


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Did you know that the fruits of the Common Ground Country Fair Exhibition Hall include more than, well, fruits? In addition to vegetables, herbs, flowers, crafts and other types of entries, the Exhibition Hall displays graphic arts, including collage, drawings, paintings, photography and more. Entry rules.

Volunteer for the 2013 Fair

Here at MOFGA, we depend on all our volunteers to make each Fair a success. It's easy to register for a volunteer shift using our online system. To register or retrieve your password please visit: http://www.VolunteerMatters.com/login/mofga. Or, if you'd like to learn more about volunteering at the Fair, just visit our webpage on MOFGA.org for more information. Please contact Anna Libby, MOFGA's Volunteer Coordinator, at alibby@mofga.org with any questions you may have. We'll see you at the Fair!

Advance Tickets for the Fair Are on Sale Now

Advance tickets for the Common Ground Country Fair are on sale now! List of outlets. Advance tickets cost the same as tickets at the gate but enable fairgoers to enter the Fair without waiting in line. The Fair is MOFGA's premier event of each year - and you don't need to buy a ticket if you're a MOFGA member. Members get free admission to all three days of the Fair - September 20, 21 and 22 this year. In addition, MOFGA members receive a quarterly newspaper on organic farming and gardening, discounts on training sessions and the satisfaction of being part of a community that is passionate about healthy, locally grown food and sustainable landscapes. Please join MOFGA today. We look forward to seeing you at the Fair!


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Josh Oxley
Josh Oxley talked about growing crops in and out of greenhouses at a recent Farm Training Project Workshop.


Farm Training Project workshops take a break next week but pick up the following week with "Dairy and Diversification," on Wednesday, September 11, at 5 p.m. at Two Loons Farm and The Milkhouse in China, Maine. Dairy farming accounts for over half of organic agriculture in Maine. Join long-time organic farmers Paige Tyson and Spencer Aitel at Two Loons Farm to see how they manage logistics and systems for the many components of their operation. Newly part of the farm operation is The Milkhouse, a creamery and diversified vegetable and livestock operation including ducks and pigs. The Milkhouse is run by former MOFGA journeypersons Caitlin Frame and Andy Smith. These four farmers collaborate to reap the benefits of dairying in Maine.


Workshop schedule.

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Sign up for MOFGA's Fall Events!

Register via the MOFGA Store or by calling the office.

  Low Impact Forestry, Level II Draft Animal Logging
October 18, 19, 20, Friday, Saturday, Sunday
Bethel
Prerequisite: LIF Level I
  Low Impact Forestry Workshop
November 14 to 17, Thursday to Sunday

Common Ground Education Center, Unity
Three options for participation
  MOFGA's Farmer to Farmer Conference
Saturday, November 2 to Monday, November 4
Point Lookout Resort, Northport
  Chainsaw Safety Course - Level I
November 16 & 17, Saturday & Sunday
  Kitchen Licensing Workshop
December 4, Wednesday
Common Ground Education Center, Unity
Includes a tour of MOFGA's Common Kitchen

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UMaine Extension Master Gardener Volunteer Training Starts Oct. 10

Applications are open for Master Gardener Volunteer training beginning Oct. 10, 12:30 to 4 p.m., at the University of Maine Cooperative Extension Knox-Lincoln and Waldo Counties offices. Classes will meet Tuesday and Thursday until late November, and continue with three sessions next spring.

The seven-week course will focus on growing fruits and vegetables, including soil health, composting and organic matter, basic botany, pest and disease management, pesticide safety and volunteerism. After classes end, participants are required to volunteer in their communities at approved sites for community service and in other practical applications of continued learning.

Program fees are on a sliding scale, from $110 to $330. The application and more details are available online (umaine.edu/knox-lincoln/news-events). Applications are due Sept. 5. For more information or an application, or to request a disability accommodation, contact the UMaine Extension Knox-Lincoln Counties Office, 207.832.0343 or 1.800.244.2104 (in Maine); jeanne.pipicello@maine.edu.

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The USDA National Organic Program is seeking comments on a proposed rule to allow biodegradable biobased mulch film on organic farms. Farmers would not need to remove the biodegradable mulch at the end of the growing season, reducing waste and farm worker labor costs. Mulch could not contain genetically engineered ingredients and would need to meet other requirements. Read the proposed rule.

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Winter squash curing in a greenhouse.

MOFGA Pest Report for August 29, 2013
Compiled by Eric Sideman, PhD, MOFGA's Organic Crop Specialist

We have moved past the problems associated with the very wet summer that many of us experienced. In fact, many growers are now complaining about the lack of rain. Now the typical late summer problems are popping up, and some new pest and disease problems are too.

In this week's issue:
Spotted Wing Drosophila Update
Basil Downy Mildew
Plectosporium on Summer Squash
When to Harvest Winter Squash

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Mainers Urged to Sign Up for Free Disposal of Banned, Unusable Pesticides

This October, the Maine Board of Pesticides Control (BPC) will team up with the Maine Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) to dispose of banned pesticides or pesticides that have become caked, frozen or otherwise rendered unusable. This free disposal program is open to homeowners, family-owned farms and greenhouses. All people need to do is register by September 27, 2013.
Registration by September 27, 2013, is mandatory - drop-ins are not permitted. To register, get details, and learn important information about the temporary storage and transportation of obsolete pesticides, go to the BPC Web site at thinkfirstspraylast.org, or call 207-287-2731.

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SPECIAL 40% OFF SALE
on all 2012 GARLIC SCAPES design merchandise, including T-shirts, sweatshirts, aprons, tote bags, posters and more.

Each order of $25 or more will receive a FREE copy of the popular book on the history of our organization -
Fertile Ground: Celebrating 40 Years of MOFGA.


Buy at the MOFGA Store.




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Piscataquis County Soil and Water Conservation District Annual Tour and Luncheon, to honor Mel and Betty Ames as Conservation District Forestry Cooperators of the Year.
Betty and Mel Ames
Betty and Mel Ames


Sept. 6 - open to the public. For more than 65 years, Mel Ames has been managing "a living trust for future generations" - the forests around him. When Mel graduated from Foxcroft Academy in 1946, the forestry training he received there laid a solid foundation for him to start buying and managing land through low-impact and other sustainable forestry practices. Decades later, each of his 600 acres can produce 35 to 50 cords per acre, up from about 15 when he started. The tour of the Ames' land and forestry practices will start at 9 a.m. and will be led by Mel Ames, Maine Forest Service's Piscataquis County district forester Gordon Moore and local forester Sam Brown. After the tour, at 11:30, enjoy a picnic luncheon featuring seasonal and local foods. Special guests Toby Hall and Sam Brown will provide musical entertainment. The luncheon will conclude with presentation of the annual PCSWCD "Outstanding Cooperator of the Year" award to Mel and Betty. Pre-registration is required by Tuesday, September 3. To register, please contact the PCSWCD at 564-2321, Extension 3 or info@piscataquisswcd.org.

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How to Move Like a Gardener


How To Move Like A Gardener: Planting and Preparing Medicines From Plants. By Deb Soule. Now available from MOFGA. 256 informative pages with over 200 beautiful color photographs taken in Avena Botanicals' garden. This book embodies Deb's deep love and respect for the spirit of the medicinal plants she has worked with for almost 40 years. $33.00. Buy at the MOFGA Store.


 


Events in Maine and Beyond - Mark Your Calendar!

NOFA-New Hampshire Summer Series - A wide range of topics at workshops held throughout New Hampshire during the summer and fall.

NOFA Vermont Summer Workshops - Whether you're a beginning or experienced farmer, a gardener or homesteader, or just want to deepen your connection to local farms, NOFA Vermont's summer workshop series has something for you. Workshops are held every few days at locations throughout Vermont.

Cheryl Wixson
Cheryl Wixson

Volunteer Workday: Putting Food By
Join MOFGA's Cheryl Wixson in preserving the harvest from MOFGA's gardens. Volunteers will work with Cheryl in the kitchen to preserve food for use at the Common Ground Country Fair and throughout the year. Workdays are on September 4th and 9th from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at MOFGA's Common Kitchen in Unity, ME. Lunch will be provided. Please RSVP to MOFGA's Volunteer Coordinator, Anna Libby, at alibby@mofga.org.

September 6 - MOFGA's Common Ground radio show. 10 to 11 a.m., WERU, 89.9 and 99.9 FM and weru.org

September 6-7 - Maine Fare, A Celebration of Maine Food and Farming, Belfast.


September 11 -
Four Season Forward - Producing Year-Round Crops Using High Tunnels, Low Tunnels and Quickhoops, with Clara Coleman of Four Season Farm Consulting. Littleton, Maine. Potluck. Co-sponsored by MOFGA and Southern Aroostook Soil and Water Conservation District. Information.

September 11 - Dairy & Diversification (MOFGA Farm Training Project).
Wednesday, 5 p.m., Two Loons Farm and The Milkhouse. Details.

Sept. 17, 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. - Explore the Depth and Breadth of Sustainable Forestry at Hidden Valley Nature Center in Jefferson.
Real-life forestry practitioners will introduce you to the theory, practice, economics, ecology and legal aspects of sustainable forestry. Co-sponsored by Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens. $80 members of CMBG and HVNC; $95 non-members. FMI: hvnc.org, codey@hvnc.org or 200-8840.

September 20, 21 & 22 - MOFGA's Common Ground Country Fair

September 25-27 - 2013 Farm Viability Conference, Middlebury, Vt. Details.

Sept. 26-27 - Northeast Organic Dairy Producers Alliance (NODPA) Annual Field Days program, Organic Dairy: Innovative Strategies to Stay Profitable.
Mansfield, Penn. Information.

September 28 - 2nd Annual Goat and Sheep Sale.
7 a.m. check-in, 1:00 p.m. sale. Somerset Auction Co., 174 Skowhegan Rd., Fairfield. Sponsored by the Boer Goat Breeders of Maine. Information: Nate Philbrick 207-557-5180 or Angie Philbrick 207-462-3361.

September 28 - First Annual Maine Chicken Coop Tour.
Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Self-guided tour will showcase an array of backyard chicken coops that display a variety of construction designs and materials, from recycled to custom designed coops. The tour is for anyone planning to start their own backyard flock, and/or curious about why keeping backyard chickens is so popular. It is free to attend and open to the public. Locations will be posted on the tour's Facebook page and Delicious Musings. For more information please email kitchens.sharon@gmail.com.

Dandelion Spring Farm
October 13 - MOFGA Fundraiser: Fine Dining - Down on the Farm. 2nd annual Fore Street Restaurant/Dandelion Spring-Straw Farm dinner.
Sunday, 2:00 Farm tour, 3:00 Dinner seating. Dandelion Spring-Straw Farm, 30 Brick Hill Road, Newcastle, Maine. The chefs from Fore Street Restaurant, Portland's finest, will prepare a five-course meal with paired drinks from food grown exclusively on Dandelion Spring-Straw Farm in Newcastle. Fare will include lamb, pork, dairy and vegetables. All proceeds will be donated to MOFGA in honor of Russell Libby. Seating limited to 100, by reservation only. Tickets: $100 per person. Tickets can be purchased at www.mofga.org or by calling 207-568-4142.

November 2 - 4 - Farmer to Farmer Conference.
Saturday to Monday, Point Lookout Resort, Northport, Maine. Details.

November 14-16 - Soils Conference with Arden Andersen in Bangor

"Grow the Food the World Wants" - How Farmers Farm Determines How the Rest of the World Lives.
Dr. Arden Andersen will present the latest on nutrient-dense biological agriculture and how healthy soils make economic and environmental sense, at Heart of Maine's Annual Soils Conference in Bangor. MOFGA is cosponsoring this event. Information: www.heartofmaine.org, info@heartofmaine.org, 207-200-3603. Early-bird registration closes on Sept. 30.

November 16 and 17 - City of Bangor's Maine Harvest Festival. 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Cross Insurance Center, Bangor. Includes sampling and the chance to purchase from more than 125 Maine farmers and producers, hourly cooking demonstrations with Maine chefs and celebrities, sampling from Maine wineries, breweries and distilleries, live music from Maine musicians, and a presentation on Maine barns by author and builder, Don Perkins. Visit the MOFGA booth at the Festival! Website.


Many more events are posted on MOFGA's on-line Calendar.
 
 

 

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