Making connections; remembering Mike Dunn

CM-MR-2-MONTPELIER-FARMS_011by Branden Jaquays

“Mike would have been devastated if we didn’t open,” said Adrianne Dunn, as she recalled this season’s opening day at Montpelier Farms — a farm she and her late husband Mike Dunn started back in 2007. Mike Dunn, a Virginia native and Maryland farmer, unexpectedly died less than two weeks before the farm was set to open for its 8th Fall agritourism season — at the age of 46. [Read more…]

Planning begins with soil health

CEW-MR-2-Soil-health11by Tamara Scully

The USDA joined other global partners in celebrating 2015 as the International Year of the Soil. This initiative is meant to underscore the importance of soil as a living “ingredient” which is literally the building block of our lives.

Assessing your soils now, and amending them this fall, can provide the foundation for a healthy 2016 growing season. [Read more…]

Trick riding expert demonstrates skills at the Pennsylvania National Horse Show

CE-MR-1-PA-Horse-Show73941by Sally Colby

Many who attend the annual Pennsylvania National Horse Show in Harrisburg, PA, go for the thrill of watching hunters and jumpers. On one night, the audience had an opportunity to watch a skilled trick rider demonstrate what it takes to ride a horse full-speed around an arena with no hands or legs for control.

Ashley Pletcher didn’t grow up in a horsey family, but received a pony by the name of Sugar when she was eight years old. “She came from the local amusement park, but she could run,” said Ashley. “She didn’t like to leave the barn, so I rode far away from the barn, turned around and ran full-speed back to the stall. I know now that that’s not a good idea.” [Read more…]

Boost sales at fall farmers markets

CM-MR-2-BOOST-SALES-031by Sanne Kure-Jensen

As days grow shorter and nights grow cooler, many growers see their largest harvests of the year. Be sure to sell that bountiful harvest at its freshest. UVM Extension’s Mary Peabody, Director of the Women’s Agricultural Network and UVM Extension Specialist in Community Resources and Economic Development offers growers these useful tools to liven up their market booths, draw in customers and boost sales. [Read more…]

Whole farm nutrient balance

CW-MR-1-Nutrient-Balance11What is whole farm nutrient balance?

Nutrient management is a process of planning for manure and fertilizer applications to individual crop fields. Whereas whole farm nutrient balance considers the location and flow of nutrients onto, within and off the entire farm. Whole farm nutrient balance involves taking a step back and also comparing the amount of nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K) and other nutrients entering the farm as purchased feed, fertilizer, animals etc. with the amount of nutrients leaving the farm as milk, animals, crops, manure exports to other farms, etc. Such a comparison can help in determining the economic and environmental impacts of nutrient management on dairy and livestock farms. [Read more…]