Archives: Stories

Choosing Community

Toki Oshima drawing By Jean English Editor, “The Maine Organic Farmer & Gardener” As MOFGA develops a long-term, forward-looking strategic plan, I looked backward for inspiration – to our late director Russell Libby’s visionary writing. “What would Russell plan?” I wondered. A long list quickly emerged, with four intertwined themes: actions we can take at

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Huey Coleman

Huey Coleman filming John Bunker collecting wild apples, for Coleman’s next documentary, “Henry David Thoreau: Surveyor of the Soul.” Photo by Judy Wentzell By Abbey Verrier In April 2014, Huey Coleman arrived at MOFGA’s Maine Heritage Orchard, camera in hand and ready to film. It was our first planting day, and a big group of

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Rediscovering the Family Farm

Toki Oshima drawing. By Grace Oedel My husband and I recently moved in with my in-laws with the intention of farming family land. I wish I could say this was a smooth, easy process, but we all struggled. We were unused to what it meant to live together. We had differing expectations about how to

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Many Hands Farm

Nyla Bravesnow of Many Hands Farm in Thorndike picks rose hips. Many Hands focuses on homesteading and permaculture on 2 cultivated acres. Photo by Sue Smith-Heavenrich. By Sue Smith-Heavenrich If you visit Many Hands Farm in Thorndike, the first thing you notice is the abundance of flowers: sunflowers, coneflowers, beebalm and calendula. Lots of calendula.

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New American Farmers

New American Sustainable Agriculture Project graduate Jabril Abdi pauses in his corn field. Batula Ismail farms her plot in Lisbon. By Stowell P. Watters Photos by Greta Rybus Here is a nightmare we Mainers can only imagine: A group of men with assault rifles comes barreling across the savannah to demand that we part with

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Volunteer Profile Erin Bibles

Erin Bibles. Photo by Betsy Garrold. By Betsy Garrold Erin Bibles and her husband, Brent, led a peripatetic life before settling at their Thorndike farm, Mélange Métairie (Mixed Small Holding). They met at the University of Arizona and moved to Oregon when Brent, a wildlife biologist, got a job at Oregon State University. Erin finished

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Editorial Jean English

Toki Oshima drawing By Jean English, Editor, The Maine Organic Farmer & Gardener Ben Falk, in his keynote speech at the Common Ground Country Fair, called for a billion new gardeners, because “we have everything we need right here, right now” to re-establish the perennial-based, diverse and integrated food-producing ecosystems that were here for thousands

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Holding Winters Peace All Year

Toki Oshima drawing By Grace Oedel Lately I have been wrestling with the dynamic tension between patience and action. How are we to balance the urgency that motivates us to do our work with the need for rest and rejuvenation? For farmers, the warm season flies by furiously with chores from before sunrise to after

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Grange Revival

Halcyon Grange in Blue Hill has a state-licensed kitchen and bulk storage bins for grain. By Betsy Garrold Photos by the author What has sprung dance floors, a stage and nurtures local agricultural traditions? The Grange, of course. In Maine the Grange is seeing a resurgence of interest and relevance. As Maine continues to grow

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Grange Corner Farm

Sam Mudge checks on his field of ‘Danko’ winter rye (right) and ‘Sirvinta’ winter wheat (left). Photo by Aube Giroux. By Holli Cederholm Grange Corner Farm, a MOFGA certified organic farm, stretches across 30 acres of old hayfields on a windy crest with panoramic views of the Camden Hills in Lincolnville, Maine. Sam Mudge says

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