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Innovative System High Tunnel

Rich Schuler, energy consultant with Practical Farmers of Iowa, by the insulated compost bin. Heat from composting warms water which is stored in tanks and available to heat greenhouse soil when needed. Sally Gran runs TableTop Farm, where the innovative heating system was trialed. The compost is aerated by blowing air through PVC pipes set

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Vegetable Oil

Oil being expressed from black oil sunflower seeds in a Piteba press. Photos by Anita Budhraja. After the oil has been pressed and the sediment and pigment allowed to settle for hours, the product is decanted, giving finished, ready-to-use oil. By Will Bonsall Those of us who seek to be more self-reliant are often content

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Cows and Climate

By Joann S. Grohman I listen to many talks by highly qualified scientists and others deeply concerned about our future, as well they might be. Some are concerned about climate change, others about starvation. In their summary remarks – I wait for it: Their suggestions for how we can mitigate disaster always include a well-meant

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Tetebatu

A view of Rinjani, Lombok’s highest volcano, from the village below. Neighbors come together to help the first of the rice harvest. A shaded platform at the edge of a rice paddy offers a midday escape from the Indonesian sun. Two farmers carry wild forage for their cows. Rice seedlings bundled to be transplanted into

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Harvest Kitchen Local Protein

Toki Oshima illustration By Roberta Bailey Maine and Vermont have two of the fastest growing local food movements in the country. That is apparent in the number of new farms and people trying to figure out how to get onto a piece of land; through the health of the seed industry; in local farmers’ markets;

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The Slow Flower Movement Grows in Maine

A bouquet of peonies, grown and arranged by the author. Photo by Jude Lamb. By Karen Volckhausen Welcome to the first column in a series about the slow flower movement in the United States and Maine. It is time to start highlighting the great flower growing that is going on here and elsewhere. Like the

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Vegetable Pest and Disease Calendar

By Eric Sideman, Ph.D. Sometimes it is better to be prepared for bad news then to be surprised by it. This chart prepares growers for some of the most common vegetable problems seen in Maine. It is based on the Bug Reporter, which used to be published by the University of Maine Extension Pest Management Office, and

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Medlars

Medlars. Photos by Will Bonsall. By Will Bonsall When I speak of medlars, people are apt to assume that I’m referring to folks who stick their noses into other folks’ business, but in this case I’m talking about a little-known and less-grown fruit. Despite its botanical name, Mespilus germanica, and its long cultivation in northern

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Kneading Conference

Barak Olins of Zu Bakery, making bread at the Kneading Conference. Photo by Amy Halloran. By Amy Halloran The Kneading Conference (https://kneadingconference.com/) began in 2007 with a few tents and mobile ovens in a church parking lot. Now those tents and ovens congregate at the Skowhegan fairgrounds each July, drawing people from all over the

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Focus on Marketing

Broadturn Farm posts photos on Instagram, Facebook and on its website for maximum exposure to social media. Photos courtesy of Broadturn Farm. How can you connect with customers through social media? Farmers highlighted their storytelling strategies at a marketing session at MOFGA’s 2013 Farmer to Farmer Conference. Stacy Brenner and John Bliss of Broadturn Farm

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