Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association
Cover of the Fall 2001 Maine Organic Farmer & Gardener
Jim Gerritsen
Jim Gerritsen. Lamb photo.
Keith Rose, Pat Hopkins and Dalene Dutton
Keith Rose, Pat Hopkins and Dalene Dutton at Camden Hills Regional High School. English photo.

Not-So-Common Potatoes at Wood Prairie Farm
By Jane Lamb
One of the most sophisticated operations in Aroostook County takes place in the most unpretentious of settings – the utilitarian potato-packing plant cum residence and its surrounding outbuildings, farming equipment and fields at WoodPrairie Farm in Bridgewater. Here Jim and Megan Gerritsen have created a unique niche for a viable business in what is often regarded as economically depressed territory.

Marketing Garlic Year ’Round
By Tom Roberts
Garlic is a strange plant. When people at market ask about growing it themselves, I tell them to forget everything they know about how plants grow because garlic is different.

Fall Planting Strawberries
By Sue Smith-Heavenrich
If you get to the Common Ground Fair this year, look for the strawberry alley crops. Last fall, Jack Kertesz put in a few beds of strawberries between young apple trees in MOFGA’s demonstration orchard. He thinks that growing strawberries between newly planted trees might provide some income while waiting for the trees to produce.

Safe Lawn Care
By Debbie Ortman
Throughout the country people will do anything to achieve a “weed” free lawn. Spraying more and more toxic pesticides and overfertilizing the soil are two of the most common practices used because of our obsession with wanting the “perfect lawn.”

StarLink Not So Stellar
By Jean English
For the past year, the unintended release and widespread distribution of genetically engineered (GE) StarLink corn has shown just how uncontrollable and potentially harmful GE foods can be.

Five Town Maine CSD Has Model School IPM Program
By Jean English
“It was my mother who went snooping around,” says Camden resident Beedy Parker. Her mother, Pam Greenman, lives across the street from what used to be the middle and high school in Camden and is now just the middle school, since the district built a new high school in Rockport. “We were seeing little white signs on the turf area,” Beedy continues – signs indicating that pesticides had been applied.

“Poked” by Poke
By Rani Lyn
I had a phenomenal herbal lesson in May that I feel is important to share with the herbal community at large. It started when my apprentice, Mary Ellen, brought me an extremely large pokeweed plant in exchange for several valerian plants. I’d always wanted to try growing poke in my windy zone 4 garden, and this was a huge, healthy plant grown only 15 minutes away.

Grow Your Own: Rosa Rugosa
By Roberta Bailey
Who can resist the smell of a rose on the coast? The smell of beach roses, Rosa rugosa, pulls up a lifetime of memories for me, but the memories of sitting on sun-warmed rocks using my teeth to scrape the bright orange flesh from ripe rosehips are the strongest.

Common Storage Problems of Vegetables
By Eric Sideman
Wheeling great quantities of potatoes or lugging boxes of squash to their winter storage site gives the greatest sense of self sufficiency and satisfaction to gardeners. Going down to get a bit for dinner on a January night and having to sift through a mass of rotting food gives a horrible sense of failure.

The Marketing Page: Portland Public Market – Nexus for Organic Grower and Consumer
By Ted Spitzer
Kat Richman, produce manager for Maine Harvest Fruit & Vegetables at the Portland Public Market, laments, “There is not enough Maine grown organic produce to sell.” Among the 40-plus Maine growers she works with regularly, only a few can supply her with produce on a consistent, year-round basis.

Harvest Kitchen: Jean Ann Pollard’s New Cookbook
By Roberta Bailey
I have such gratitude toward Jean Ann Pollard. She has been a guide and inspiration to me in the kitchen since 1987, when she published The New Maine Cooking.

MOFGA logo

Nutting Ventured, Nutting Gained, by CR Lawn
MOFGA Member Supports Heifer Project, by Rebecca Doff


The WIC Program & Better Health
By Russell Libby, MOFGA Executive Director
Eventually, we’ll figure out how to connect the pieces in a way that makes sense. In June, Scott Howell, a MOFGA board member and organic farmer from Blue Hill, called with a question about the WIC (Women, Infants and Children) program. A local store had a sign indicating that WIC coupons couldn’t be used to buy organic food, which definitely had Scott asking questions.

The Common Ground Country Fair is an Organic Experience
By Eric Rector, 2001 MOFGA President
The title of this message may sound obvious, since the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association has organized the Common Ground Country Fair for 25 years. What I really mean is that the Fair itself is a living metaphor for organic agriculture, not simply a demonstration of its virtues.

Maine Foods Counter “Free” Trade
By Eric Rector
Posted roads, lambing stories, and seedlings in the window – it is spring, the Maine version, as I write this. Political leaders were meeting in Quebec to discuss forming a “Free Trade Area of the Americas,” while protesters reminded them that “free” trade is not without a cost.

The G8 Meetings Should Be Held at Common Ground
By Jean English, Editor, The Maine Organic Farmer & Gardener
Stories abound about people who don’t know how or where potatoes grow, how milk gets into cartons, or how to do with less. So I’ve been heartened by a few experiences I’ve had with my family lately.

Ten Things I Learned from an Old Farmer
By Marada Cook
Teenagers know everything, right? This young farm girl thought so too until her first apprenticeship with Eliot Coleman on the coast of Maine.

MOFGA Legislative Report
By Sharon Tisher
MOFGA has wrapped up its busiest, and arguably most productive, legislative session ever. Of the seven legislative proposals on which MOFGA testified, five went the way we hoped.

Book Reviews
Genetically Engineered Food: A Self-Defense Guide for Consumers, by Ronnie Cummins and Ben Lilliston
Nourishing Traditions, by Sally Fallon and Mary G. Enig, Ph.D.

News & Events

Maine BPC Report
Board of Pesticides Control Struggles with Data Collection Legislation

Farmer to Farmer Conference
Capital Campaign Update
Summer Intern Kelley Glidden
Homestead News

Volunteer Profile
Rick Kipp

Common Ground Country Fair
Welcome to the 25th Fair!

A Year in My Life at Common Ground
By Rhonda Houston

Common Ground (1977)
By Bruce Finlayson

Keynote Speakers:
Chief Barry Dana
Jim Hightower
Ronnie Dugger
Dr. Vandana Shiva

Shall We Chautauqua? To Quell a Corporate Coup …
By David Kubiak

MOFGA Public Policy Teach-In:
Intriguing Look at the Maine Legislature