"The soil is, as a matter of fact, full of live organisms. It is essential to conceive of it as something pulsating with life, not as a dead or inert mass."
- Albert Howard, The Soil and Health, 1947
|| The Maine Organic Farmer & Gardener – Spring 2007
Ask MOFGA – Are any birdseeds engineered?
Maine Board of Pesticides Control Reports Clicking here takes you to the Public Policy section.
MOFGA Notes Staff Updates, events, links to other sections.
Eating Through Snow in New Sweden
by Marada Cook
Hestia was a goddess of hearth and fire. Greek script lacks capital letters to distinguish names from objects, so Hestia meant literally the ‘hearth,’ the center of the home kitchen, and the keeper of the flame.
Healthy Food in Hospitals
by Terry Allan
For most people, hospital food conjures images of bland, institutional, overcooked meat and vegetables accompanied by surreal Jell-O. But a quiet revolution taking place gradually in hospital kitchens around the country has positive implications not only for public health, but for local sustainable food production as well.
The Potato Culture of Aroostook County, Maine, USA
by Jim Gerritsen
Jim Gerritsen, a MOFGA-certified organic grower at Wood Prairie Farm in Bridgewater, presented this address at Slow Food – Terra Madre in Turino, Italy, on October 28, 2006.
Redefining Soil Fertility
There is No Soil Fertility Without a Healthy Forest
by Céline Caron
Have you ever wondered how a forest can grow and reproduce with no addition of fertilizers or irrigation; without tree transplants; and how insects are controlled without pesticides? Natural forests thrive and regenerate without human intervention, fertilizers or biocides. The only sources of energy are the sun and water. The forest is a living machine working with living material, and from this living machine comes soil fertility.
Chainsaw Safety for Women: Setting the Bar High
by Ellen S. Gibson
This is the story of how 25 women showed up at the barn on Stearns Hill Farm in West Paris on a chilly Saturday morning in March last year to attend a workshop on chainsaw safety. It’s the story of leadership, of an educational model that embraces women in non-traditional fields, of partnerships, passion and professionalism.
A Maine Winemaking Sampler
by Craig Idlebrook
So you want to start a vineyard in Maine. Before you plow up your squash patch, you might want to talk to some farmers who have tried growing grapes.
by John Fuchs
Grapes are an ideal, but often challenging, crop for the homeowner or homesteader to grow in far northern climates. They are amazingly productive, grow in a wide variety of soils and need surprisingly little care.
Sheep (and Goat) Farming and the Maine Micro Dairy Cooperative
by Jean English
Sheep farmers Keith Morgan-Davie or North Whitefield and Perry Ells of Union described their operations at the Farmer to Farmer Conference in Bar Harbor last November and discussed the Maine Micro Dairy Cooperative.
The Seed of Our Futures
by Jean English
Frank Morton has been breeding and experimenting with vegetables for some 25 years. Varieties that grow well under organic cultivation on both coasts are offered in quantities of ½ ounce or more in his Wild Garden Seed catalog from Gathering Together Farm, PO Box 1509, Philomath, OR 97370 (www.wildgardenseed.com). Morton was the keynote speaker at MOFGA and Cooperative Extension’s Farmer to Farmer Conference last November.
Greensprouting Potatoes Gives Northern Growers a Head Start
By Sue Smith-Heavenrich
Last spring I was intrigued when Andy Leed, an upstate New York grower, mentioned that he was “greensprouting” his potatoes. He’d been growing table-crop spuds for many years and, frustrated by the lack of organic seed tubers in smaller sizes, decided to diversify, planting part of his acreage to production of certified organic seed potatoes.
Ten Ways to Make April 15th Less Stressful
by Craig Idlebrook
Come March, farmers may be wondering how to pay this year’s taxes when crop income is still just a twinkle in their eyes. Here are 10 tax tips from three farm business specialists from University of Vermont Extension: Dennis Kauppila, St. Johnsbury; Bob Parsons, on campus; and Glenn Rogers, St. Albans.
Harvest Kitchen: Salad Dressings
by Roberta Bailey
The greens that I started in my sunroom in January are sizing up. Lettuce, mustards, spinach and cilantro stretch from mouse ear to cat ear size. As I water them I tell them about dogs. As I watch them grow, I try to correlate their growth rate with the rate of increasing day length. I have yet to come up with any solid data, except that we’re all feeling expansive with all this sparkly sunlight and warmth.
Selenium: An Important Balance Between Sufficiency and Toxicity
by Diane Schivera, M.S., and Eric Sideman, Ph.D.
Selenium (Se) serves important functions in all animals. Called the “protection mineral,” it is a key component in glutathione peroxidase, an antioxidant enzyme.
2006 MOF&G Index
MOFGA Certification for 2007
Community-Supported Farms in Maine: 2007 Directory
MOFGA Annual Meeting
Supporting Our Farmer-Heroes
Amanda Beal, MOFGA President
Organic Food: A Niche, or the Future?
Russell Libby, MOFGA Executive Director
Sustainable Fundraising for Schools
Jean English, Editor of The MOF&G
Is Ramial Chipped Wood the Way of the Future?
Proposed USDA-ARS Organic Site in Unity Needs Support
OMRI's One-Stop Seed Listing Expensive, Limited
Harvey Keeps Fighting Organic Hoodwinkers
Ethanol Debate Continues
Clicking here takes you to this issue's Book Review page, where the following books are described.
Gaining Ground – Making a Successful Transition to Organic Farming by Llizabet Dwwyor, Eleanor Heise, Anne Macey, Katrina Simmons, Janet Wallace, 2005
The Road Washes Out in Spring: A Poet's Memoir of Living Off the Grid by Baron Wormser, 2006
The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals by Michael Pollan, 2006
Clicking here takes you to this issue's Resources page with descriptions of the following:
• Guide to the Legal Terrain of Farm Business
• Resource for Group Decision Making
• Adding a Rain Garden to Your Landscape
MOFGA Resources Directory – Click here to access additional links!