Our Family Farms

CN-MR-3-FamilyFarm2by Laura Rodley

Our Family Farms is a co-owned cooperative, comprising four farms stretching from Leyden, at the northern edge of Massachusetts, to Shelburne, across 10 miles of fertile land. This land supports 400 cows, collectively of prize-winning stock, that produce high-quality hormone rBST-free milk. Its office is based in Greenfield, MA.

Warren Facey is the owner of Bree-Z-Knoll in Leyden, executive director of Massachusetts Association of Dairy Farmers and a 40-year Farm Bureau member. He is also on the Franklin County Board of Directors and a lifelong observer of farms. “In 1985 there was a big exodus. It’s been going on ever since,” he said. [Read more…]

A perfect pest — Palmer Amaranth, a new threat to Pennsylvania agriculture

CM-MR-3-Palmerby Steve Wagner

Woody Sigmin of Memphis, TN is very vocal about Palmer Amaranth, a species of pigweed recently introduced to Pennsylvania agriculture.

“I’m from the Mississippi delta, and believe me, you do not want this plant on your farm!” he said while riding in a canopied wagon with three dozen attendees during the 2014 Farming for Success seminar at Penn State’s research station in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania.

Pigweed is not grown in these trial fields, but samples have been brought in. “It’s unbelievable. It is horrible, it is terrible,” Sigmin said. “We have to rotate completely different crops just trying to clean out that one weed.” [Read more…]

From the rodeo ring to the pasture

CW-MR-3-Jim Brown344by Kelly Gallagher

After only a minute of conversation, it becomes clear that Jim Brown — a beef cattle farmer who works a 95-acre plot of land in Seneca Falls, NY with his wife, Elsie — loves his herd. For Brown, caring for his Charolais cattle goes far beyond providing them with essentials like food and medical attention. He makes it a point to get to know each of his 30 cows individually, and he works hands-on with them as much as possible. The result? Thirty happy cows, and a farmer who truly enjoys what he does.

Brown insists that he has no favorite breed of cattle. When asked why he currently keeps Charolais, he has a ready response. “When the neighbor calls up at 3 a.m. to tell me, ‘Your cows are in my corn!’, the Charolais are easy to see in the dark!” he jokes, referring to the Charolais’ white coat. [Read more…]

Can growing malting barley be profitable in New York State?

CEW-MR-2-Malting Barley6by Elizabeth A. Tomlin

Despite thunderstorms with continuous lightning and torrential downpours, nearly 40 people traveled to Bob and Andy Crowe’s Inverness Farm near Ames, NY, to take part in a Malting Barley Field Day and Workshop presented by Cornell University and CCE of Central New York.

The workshop featured speakers Plant Pathologist Dr. Gary Bergstrom, Plant Pathology and Plant-Microbe Biology of Cornell University; Research Support Specialist David Benscher, Small Grains Breeding & Genetics Project of Cornell University and Central NY CCE Regional Field Crop Specialist Kevin Ganoe. [Read more…]