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Using Cottonseed Fertilizer

Far Better Options Exist by Alex Owre High-nitrogen content (6-2-2) cottonseed meal is an organic fertilizer that lowers the pH of soil, poses little danger of burning plants, and provides nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium as well as many minor plant food elements. It is cheap and readily available. In some states, however, cottonseed meal is

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Maine Winemaking Sampler

A sampling of Shalom’s fruit wines.  Photo by Frances Idlebrook. 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. Dennis King has a small organic vineyard at King Hill Farm in Penobscot.

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Farmers Markets

Farmers’ markets are a key way to develop local farms and strong communities in Maine. Here Nicolas Lindholm sells his organic blueberries at a farmers’ market. Photo by Jo Anne Bander. by Jo Anne Bander On any July or August morning, rain or shine, at a parking lot, town square or field somewhere in Maine,

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Producing Locally Connecting Globally

Jim Amaral of Borealis Breads was among the Maine contingent that savored the 2006 Terra Madre, a global gathering that promotes strong, local communities and quality foods. Photo by Jo Anne Bander. by Jo Anne Bander Sometimes you have to travel far to understand what you have at home – not that it is a

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Cottonseed as Protein

by Alex Owre The white lint that is spun into cotton yarn constitutes roughly a quarter of the raw plant matter sucked into a cotton stripper. Over the years, U.S. producers have learned to squeeze maximum value out the rest, especially the seeds. For every pound of fiber, 1.6 pounds of seed are produced. Once

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Kingdom Farmer

Vermont farmer William Butler enthusiastically traded in his tractor for a team of horses for plowing, making hay and logging.  With the increasing price of fuel and decreasing returns on milk, this move was economical (as was switching to organic milk production).  “Now I’m keeping my money,” he says. Not only do the horses save

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Weed Control

Three MOFGA growers – Matt Williams, Dave Colson and Rob Johanson – told a large, enthusiastic audience about their organic weed control methods at a MOFGA-sponsored talk at the Maine Agricultural Trades Show in Augusta in January. Winter Grains and Summer Fallow Matt Williams grows oats and wheat at his Aurora Mills & Farm in

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Lifestyle and Alzheimers Disease

What is dementia? Dementia is a group of symptoms characterized by a decline in intellectual functioning severe enough to interfere with a person’s normal daily activities and social relationships. Alzheimer’s disease is the most common cause of dementia in older persons. https://nihseniorhealth.gov/alzheimersdisease/faq/faq2a.html What is Alzheimer’s disease? Alzheimer’s disease is the most common cause of dementia

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Gardening for Monarchs

Monarch butterfly adults feed on Echinacea (and many other species), while larvae require milkweed leaves. Planting for Monarchs can help these animals as they face habitat destruction and limited food sources in industrial-agricultural monocultures. Photo by Larry Lack. Monarch caterpillar feeding on milkweed leaves. Photo by Larry Lack. By Larry Lack and Lee Ann Ward

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Milkweed Seeds

By Jean English Collecting milkweed seed is a late fall tradition in our family. When the seeds are bursting out of their pods in late fall, they’re carried away on dry and windy days – or stuffed into a paper bag to sit on a shelf by our door all winter. Come spring, when the

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