Managing pests of herb and vegetable bedding plants

 by Katie Navarra

“Biological control programs use living organisms that are natural enemies of insects to control pests and diseases,” said Leanne Pundt, Extension Educator for University of Connecticut at the Litchfield County Extension Center.

“They do not act as quickly as pesticides, so cannot be used as a rescue treatment. Natural enemies are best used preventatively, early in the cropping cycle, when plants are small, pest numbers are low and pest damage has not yet occurred,” she added.

Biological controls also reduce worker exposure to pesticide and pesticide residues, limits spray damage, requires limited equipment for application and improves plant quality. Integrating biological controls also lengthens the lifespan of effective pesticides used in greenhouses by reducing opportunity for the development of resistance. [Read more…]

Letter to the Editor: NYS Corn and Soybean Growers

As members of the board of directors of the New York Corn & Soybean Growers Association, Inc. (Association), we feel compelled to respond to letters that have recently appeared in this publication related to our decision to search for a new executive director of the Association.

While we are restricted in discussing personnel matters, please know that circumstances over a period of time necessitated the board to make a change at the executive director level. This decision was made with full board support and was made in the best interests of all New York corn and soybean growers. [Read more…]

A portrait of Essex Farm: Organic, environmentally sensitive, humane, sustainable, diversified and “dirty”

CE-MR-3-Dirty-Life1by Pat Malin

Farming is fun; it’s creative; it’s hard and without a doubt it’s “dirty” work. As Mark and Kristin Kimball explain it, though, it becomes an appealing and infectious way of life.

Mark Kimball was in perpetual motion physically and verbally, maintaining a constant banter with Kristin, and for two hours entertaining an audience of about 200 people who attended their lecture at Hamilton College on March 10. [Read more…]

Make #DCHA2015 trend on social media

DCHA_2015 Conference Banner_111114(1)“Connect with the best” online for live conference happenings and a chance to win a calf and heifer canvas print.

Madison, WI– The 2015 Dairy Calf and Heifer Association (DCHA) Conference is just around the corner, where attendees will have a chance to connect with some of the world’s best calf and heifer raisers. All calf and heifer raisers are invited to follow the conference and join the conversation online by using #DCHA2015. [Read more…]

Students tour dairy farms

CN-MR-2-TRAVEL-DAY_5345by Emily Rice, University of New Hampshire

This past January I traveled with eight other of my classmates from the University of New Hampshire to Prince Edward Island, Canada with the New England Dairy Travel Course. Students from the University of Maine, the University of Connecticut, the University of Rhode Island, and the University of Massachusetts were also enrolled in this course. All 41 of us traveled together via bus that was supported by a very generous grant from Northeast Farm Credit’s AgEnhancement program. We met Jan. 4 at the University of New Hampshire’s Durham location at our Fairchild Dairy Farm. As UNH students, we gave a tour to the visiting colleges of our facility starting with our calf room. The calf room holds around 20 calves and is attached to the main barn where the lactating cows are held. The rough herd size is 90 cows, milking 75 of which 25 belong to our student-run CREAM herd. The somatic cell count for the CREAM herd is 71,000 cells/mL and the somatic cell count for the remainder of the milking herd is 54,000 cells/mL. They are milked in a double five herringbone parlor and are held in a tie stall. The heifer barn is located in close proximity to the main barn and the dry cows reside in a pack barn that gives them access to a field for grazing, weather permitting. [Read more…]