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Maple Syrup Production for Beginners

1996 Farmer to Farmer Conference Gregory Moore of Heartfelt Farm in Cushing and Ellis Percy of Spruce Bush Farm, recently relocated to Jefferson, talked about their systems for producing and marketing maple syrup. Like most people who get involved in maple syrup, they started out with backyard production, boiling on the kitchen stove or in

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Organic Apple Production

1996 Farmer to Farmer Conference Steve Page and Cynthia Anthony’s presentation at the Farmer to Farmer conference sparked a wide-ranging discussion about how to produce apples organically. This is Steve’s third orchard, and as he said, “The first one was experimental, and so are all the others since.” In many ways, Bear Well Orchard in

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Lead

By Eric Sideman, Ph.D. Lead is an element that is lumped with a group called heavy metals because of their similar chemical characteristics. Some of these metals are necessary nutrients in small amounts for plants and/or animals, but as a general rule, each becomes toxic at some concentration. Copper and zinc are essential in very

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Fava Favorites

By Roberta Bailey Over the last few years, I have been discovering shell beans. Their diverse flavors and uses are well worth the time that I once considered to be the reason that I didn’t grow them. This year I have discovered fava or broad beans. I tried growing them once, about 15 years ago,

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Fava Beans

By Roberta Bailey Fava beans (Vicia faha) are an Old World legume, originating in the Near East. They were probably the first domesticated food crop. From the Neolithic period onward, they appear in myth, Egyptian tombs, and archeological sites of the Mediterranean basin, China, and Northern Africa. Prior to the discovery of the Americas, favas

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Ginkgo

By Deb Soule Ginkgo biloba is thought to be the oldest living genus of seed plants on our planet and is the only member of the genus Ginkgo. Its family is Ginkgoaceae. Botanists who study the evolution of plants through their fossil remains have found that ginkgo has remained unchanged for the past 150 million

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Common St Johnswort

Common St. Johnswort, Hypericum perforatum (right), is a useful medicinal herb that is easy to grow in the garden. Illustration from Field Book of American Wild Flowers by F. Schuyler Mathews, G.P. Putnam’s Sons, N.Y., 1902. By Deb Soule Common St. Johnswort (Hypericum perforatum) is native to Europe and has naturalized in fields and along roadsides throughout

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Oilseed Pumpkins

‘Gleisdorfer’, one of the oilseed pumpkins Bonsall trialed last summer. Photo by Will Bonsall. By Will Bonsall We usually class pumpkins along with other succulent vegetables; however a particular type of pumpkin is much more nutrient-dense, in that it is an oilseed, like sunflowers, sesame and peanuts. For centuries, Eastern European farmers have raise pumpkins

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Chamomile

Toki Oshima drawing. A Comforting and Healing Herb – and a Soothing Back-to-School Remedy By Deb Soule The chamomile most commonly used by herbalists is the annual variety often referred to as German chamomile. Its Latin name, previously Matricaria chamomilla, is now Matricaria recutita. Chamomile belongs to the Compositae (Daisy) family. This particular species grows

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Grow Your Own: Mesclun

By Roberta Bailey The National Gardening Bureau deemed 1997 the “Year of the Mesclun” and from my vantage point in Palermo, they called it right. The cool spring and well-timed rains of summer created ideal conditions for growing salad greens. The year is not over yet: A bed of mesclun seeded in September could feed

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