The Maine Organic Farmer and Gardener

The Maine Organic Farmer & Gardener

The Maine Organic Farmer & Gardener, MOFGA’s quarterly newspaper, is considered to be one of the leading information sources on organic agriculture and sustainable living practices. The publication features articles ranging from organic farming and gardening advice to in-depth coverage on the ecological, social and environmental consequences of industrialized agriculture. Each issue also features delicious recipes, organic products information, details on MOFGA’s activities and much, much more.

Read the Spring 2024 Issue

Celebrating 50 Years of The Maine Organic Farmer & Gardener

By Holli Cederholm, Editor

I was first introduced to The MOF&G as a student at Unity College, in Unity, Maine, where I spent my semesters studying environmental writing and ecology and my summers working on organic farms. I would pore over the publication in the campus library, which was situated between, at one time, vegetable production fields for local food relief and a hoophouse for season extension. The MOF&G, then in its third decade and edited by Jean English, felt like an entrance into the world of Maine agriculture that I was working to become a part of. From its pages, I could learn about growing practices I might someday employ on my own farm; new methods for cooking and preserving the food I produced; and resources for marketing and distributing my harvests. I loved getting to know other farmers by reading about their operations and then meeting them through events hosted by MOFGA that I learned about in the paper’s calendar of workshops and trainings. The MOF&G was a map that helped me find my way.

MOFGA was founded in 1971 as a peer-to-peer resource group for sharing organic growing information at a time when there weren’t a lot of resources widely available. In 1974, volunteer Tim Nason transitioned MOFGA’s existing mimeographed newsletter into a newspaper, The MOF&G, published six times a year. While today — in the age of Google searches, YouTube tutorials, Craigslist, Facebook groups and podcasts on every subject— a source of aggregated information and resources on a certain topic may be taken for granted, The MOF&G had the revolutionary power of connecting like-minded individuals around common goals. The pages of The MOF&G offered novel information about the burgeoning organic movement — from on-farm research in organics to camaraderie in what can be an isolating livelihood.

The publication served to bring together those interested in organic throughout Maine that would have otherwise largely relied on word of mouth. There were calls for vendors to join farmers’ markets; joint ordering efforts for bulk supplies (which laid the foundation for Fedco Seeds’ Organic Growing Supplies division); classifieds for selling, buying and trading goods and services; and much more. The pages of The MOF&G brought together community on paper, and in person.

In an interview I conducted with Nason shortly before he retired as The MOF&G’s designer in 2020, after nearly 50 years working with the paper, he told me that he named the publication after The Maine Farmer. Published in the early 1800s by Ezekiel Holmes, it was the first agricultural newspaper in the United States, and also happened to be published in Maine. “It impressed me very much that an individual such as Holmes could have the foresight and persistence to work toward social, economic and educational change through the publication of a newspaper for farmers and make it his life’s career. Naming The MOF&G after The Maine Farmer was my tip of the hat to the work of Ezekiel Holmes. Never, even in my craziest dreams, did I imagine that The MOF&G would become my own life’s work.” But it did — and Nason and The MOF&G similarly worked towards social, economic and educational change that has had a tremendous impact on the community.

During the 50th year of The MOF&G, we’ll continue the longstanding tradition of sharing resources for organic farmers and gardeners. We’ll also be celebrating with special content in each issue. In our “Looking Back” segment, we’ll share brief snippets that explore the history of The MOF&G; up first is an excerpt from the above-mentioned interview with Nason. We also have a special guest editorial by him in this issue. For more history about the publication, plus an anniversary-worthy spread of recipes, check out Roberta Bailey’s Harvest Kitchen column. 2024 also marks Bailey’s 40th year as a contributor. If you have any favorite memories of The MOF&G, please write to us and share! We’d love to hear how the paper has impacted our readers over the years.

In this Issue


  • New Season, New Opportunities to Build Resilience by Sarah Alexander, Executive Director
  • Celebrating 50 Years of The Maine Organic Farmer & Gardener by Holli Cederholm, Editor
  • Reflecting on the Early Days of The MOF&G by Tim Nason, Founding Editor

MOFGA Stories

  • Flowers





  • Volunteer Profile: Kelly Sandman
  • Common Ground Country Fair
  • Annual Meeting and Board Announcement
  • MOFGA Directory
  • MOFGA’s Business Members
  • Calendar
  • Maine Exchange

Writers' Guidelines

Learn about becoming a contributor for the Maine Organic Farmer and Gardener.
Writers' Guidelines

Share Your Story in The MOF&G

Each issue we publish a selection of first-person nonfiction stories submitted by our readers.
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