Tag: Weeds

Don’t Kill All the Japanese Knotweed!

Japanese knotweed (Polygonum cuspidatum) has the unfortunate reputation of “invasive species” which means that there has been a concerted effort to eliminate it. In the process, we may be losing a valuable source of medicine. Not only that but Japanese knotweed has been a food source for both human and animal foragers alike, and its

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Garden Weeds

by Eric Sideman, PhDMOFGA’s Organic Crop Specialist Emeritus Garden weeds are simply plants that are growing where you do not want them. Any plant species may be a weed, but in gardens in New England, there are some species that are very common. And, in some gardens, very common is an understatement. Why do some

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Using Green Manures

by Eric Sideman, PhDMOFGA’s Organic Crop Specialist Emeritus Introduction There is no such thing as the “best green manure”. A grower has to decide what is the most important benefit to their farm system of growing green manures and what is the window of opportunity that they have to take cropland out of production. This

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Cluster or Hill Planting

  Clusters of corn, with beans interplanted   Onions grow in clusters of three or four with up to 10 inches between. By Will Bonsall Photos by the author I once watched a fellow go to great pains to build a mound of at least 5 gallons in volume, which he neatly flattened on top

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Rusted Rooster

The Rusted Rooster Farm family, left to right (with ages as of Oct. 2017): Sean, Chloe (3), Jackson (5), Sandra, Lacey (17 months) and Shannon (6). Photo by Lily Piel Mowing a cover crop of peas and oats for cattle feed with an 826 International. Photo by Sean O’Donnell Sean at work in his John

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Organic Sweet Corn

Sweet corn can not only lure customers to your farm stand but can be profitable, as well. USDA photo. Organic sweet corn has profit potential for farms and is a great draw to farm stands and farmers’ markets – if grown well. David Handley, UMaine Cooperative Extension vegetable and small fruit specialist, and Jack Manix

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The Many Uses of Salsify

‘Hoffmann’s Schwarze Pfahl’ black scorzonera, growing at Khadighar. Will Bonsall photo. By Will Bonsall As a youth, I knew salsify only as an obscure reference in an Uncle Remus tale, along with persimmons and calamus root. When I began gardening, I saw salsify in the novelty section of seed catalogs, along with plants such as

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Purslane

Purslane is high in healthful omega-3 fatty acids – for a vegetable. English photo. By Roberta Bailey Last year was the first year that purslane started showing up in my garden. When I saw it my heart leapt with a little fear. All the voices of other gardeners complaining about this difficult weed rushed through

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Fall Cleanup or Not

Sheep feed on a summer cover crop of Japanese millet, with another garden in the background. Photo by Eric Sideman. By Eric Sideman, Ph.D. Gardeners do not often think of themselves as managers, but they are. At this time of year, which I refer to as Fair time, gardeners have to make a very important

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Wild Greens

Cut dandelion greens before the plants flower. English photo. By Chris Knapp There is something intrinsically wonderful about wild food. Over the years my wife and I have shared wild plants with countless people. Folks bend down to the earth, pick a plant and put it in their mouths. Aha! An essential truth about our

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