Carrot Improvement for Organic Agriculture

by Katie Navarra

Nearly 14.3 percent of the total carrot crop acreage in the United States is grown in organic farming systems. “Carrots are a significant organic production vegetable component in U.S. agriculture,” said Micaela Colley, executive director and research education director for the Organic Seed Alliance.

Given the crop’s importance in organic agriculture, carrots are the focus of a nationwide project aimed at addressing critical needs of organic farmers. The collaborative includes researchers from around the country with specialties in multiple disciplines. The group is working together to develop and identify carrot varieties with improved nematode and disease resistance, increased nutritional value and flavor and improved weed competitiveness. [Read more…]

In the field with a multimedia specialist

CEW-MR-3-Multimedia31by Troy Bishopp, the Grass Whisperer

I have said for many years, agriculturalists have some of the prettiest, most iconic landscapes to capture on film. We have cute kids, farmers, animals and vistas. We also have truthful images and events describing the inter-workings and hardships associated with farming. Any way you slice it, the media’s portrayal of our farms is of particular interest to the general public. Why not explore working with a multimedia specialist to tell your story? [Read more…]

A change of philosophy leads to efficiency

CW-MR-3-Cold-Spring6401by Sally Colby

Eighth generation farmers Dan and Steve Gross have been farming for as long as they can remember, but growing demand for fed Holstein steers took the brothers’ Manchester, PA, cattle operation to a new level.

Dan recalls that for many years, the family’s Cold Spring Farms was home to about 130 calves at a time. Calves were housed in a variety of calf hutches and pens on the farm, but feeding and handling was inefficient. [Read more…]

Winter care for farm animals, large and small

Insure all of the animals in your care are well provided for as winter approaches.

Insure all of the animals in your care are well provided for as winter approaches.

by George Looby, DVM

Each year when the maples have dropped the last of their leaves the time arrives when we begin to look around our homesteads and begin the seasonal task of buttoning down for winter. It is an age-old ritual that never changes but as we check down the list of things to be done it is easy to slip and overlook one or more important tasks. High on the list should be insuring that all of the animals in our care are well provided for as winter approaches. [Read more…]

Fresh cow feeding

CEW-MR-1-Fresh-cow-feeding18by Tamara Scully

Fresh cows are typically maintained on a slightly modified high-production cow diet. Unlike dry cow diets, where much of the research on transition cow nutrition has been focused, the postpartum period dietary requirements have been overlooked. But that will be changing, as researchers focus on fresh cow feeding strategies over the next few years, predicts Dr. Tom Overton, Cornell University, Professor Director, PRO-DAIRY. [Read more…]