The many hats of Rocky and Marilyn Lively

CN-MR-3-Sunrise1by Laura Rodley

Rockwell, best known as Rocky, and Marilyn Lively own Sunrise Farms in Colrain, MA. Like all farmers, they both wear many hats. Rocky raises hormone- and chemical-free grass-fed beef, produces maple syrup and builds houses out of lumber sawn at the sawmill run by his son, Jordan Lively, on the 500-acre farm. His son Erik Lively, a resident of Greenfield, comes every day to work at the farm. They are all partners, and the farms’ sole employees. They are members of Community in Sustainable Agriculture, (CISA), which assists and promotes local farmers. [Read more…]

Connecticut’s “Outstanding Dairy Farm of the Year”

CN-MR-3-GreenPastures2by Lorraine Strenkowski

Jeff and Alexis Cone of Lebanon, CT have been named the “Outstanding Dairy Farm of the Year 2014,” by the New England Green Pastures program. This award is presented annually to one farm in each of the six New England states.

Green Pastures started back in 1947 with New Hampshire challenging the other New England states to produce better pastures than their own. With the growing dairy industry, this annual competition evolved into a program that not only considered pasture quality and forage management, but also the farm family, production, herd/milk quality, financial stability and community involvement. [Read more…]

Northern VA cattlemen see their gift return hope in western South Dakota

CEWM-MR-3-SDHeiffers3by Sherry Bunting

In the agriculture community, it’s not hard to find examples of folks “giving forward” in ways that make America great. One such example was to be found in Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley this past winter and spring. The Rockingham Feeder Calf Association organized two cattle drives through the Heifers for South Dakota (HSD) project to help replenish losses and lift the spirits of fellow ranchers nearly 2,000 miles away after the unexpected pre-season Winter Storm Atlas devastated ranches along Highway 34 into the Black Hills region during the first week of October. [Read more…]

Weed control for vegetable crops

CEW-MR-1-WeedControlby Sanne Kure-Jensen

Good weed control leads to stronger plants, higher crop yields and higher farm profits. “Effective weed control starts with proper identification,” said Dr. Richard Bonanno, UMass Extension and GAP Educator, at a recent pesticide-training workshop held in Warwick, RI. He recommended growers verify weed ID using the “New England Vegetable Management Guide” or a good a field guide.

Growers should note weeds, treatments and weather each season and use past years’ notes to determine likely locations and times for outbreaks. Scout potential trouble sites to verify the need for treatment. For peak effectiveness, apply just enough of the right treatment at the weed’s most vulnerable life stage. [Read more…]