Compiled by Vern Grubinger, University of Vermont Extension
(802) 257-7967 ext. 13 or

JANUARY 26, 2005

In the green First Presbyterian Church located down the hill from Barre Municipal Center. Take exit 7 of I-89, follow route 62 into Barre.
Turn right at the lights onto route 302,  go 1/4 mile then turn left just after the shopping plaza. Church is on the right.

Free and open to the public. Moderator: Vern Grubinger, University of Vermont Extension
1:00 Making the Most of Nitrogen - John Howell, UMass Extension (retired)

Getting the right amount of N to your crops can be a challenge, especially with organic inputs like manures, composts, and cover crops. For nearly 30 years, John Howell has advised growers of all types on soil fertility management. Conventional, organic, wholesale, retail, hot peppers, tobacco, onions…he's seen it all. He's also conducted many field and farm trials looking at ways to make better use of nitrogen, such as response to various fertilizers, and the pre-sidedress N test for vegetables. He'll share his extensive experience with us and answer your questions.

1:45  A Visit to Calvert's Gift Farm – Jack Gurley

Jack and his wife run a profitable 5-acre organic farm in Maryland that has a CSA and specializes in high-end restaurant. The farm grows many unusual varieties of vegetables and has an intensive cover crop rotation. The couple provides most of the farm labor and does all the marketing. Jack is one of several SARE farmer-educators that have been hired to travel the Northeast describing the elements that make their farms successful, and that's what he'll do.

2:30  Scheduling Sweet Corn Plantings– Hank Bissell, Lewis Creek Farm

This past year Hank had a grant from the Vermont Vegetable and Berry Growers Association to study whether there was a simple way to predict when to plant sweet corn to assure a steady supply. He compared growing degree-day accumulation since planting to the stage of plant growth to see if the latter could be used to determine when to plant. Hank will provide an overview of approaches to sweet corn scheduling as well as the results of his project.

3:15  Growing Organic Plugs and Cuttings - Brenda Hedges, Greystone Gardens

Brenda and Mike Hedges recently started a commercial greenhouse in Waterbury that produces certified organic plugs and cuttings. They started with a small greenhouse, then built a larger, more automated house and developed their catalog. Brenda will take us through their production system, their crops, and the challenges they had to deal with to meet the organic standards.

FEBRUARY 8, 2005

At the Holiday Inn, Rutland Vermont. Just north of the intersection of route 7 and route 4 west.
(802) 775-1911 or

8:00  Registration, Trade Show, Refreshments

9:00  President's Remarks
          David Marchant, River Berry Farm, Fairfax

9:15  Strawberry and Bramble Variety Update and Pest Management Breeding Objectives
         Dr. Courtney Weber, Geneva Experiment Station, Cornell University

10:00  Tool Time! Grower Panel on Favorite Gadget and Gizmos
            Hank Bissell, Jake Guest, Pete Johnson, Dave Marchant, Bob Pomykala

10:45  Break

11:00  Vegetable and Berry Pests to Look Out For in 2005
            Ann Hazelrigg, UVM Extension

11:30   Vermont Land Trust’s Diversified Agriculture Programs
            Bob Baird, VT Land Trust

12:00  Luncheon and Trade Show

1:30   Business Meeting: Election of Officers, Public Relations, etc.

1:45  Farm Visits 2004: Managing Crops, Pests, Soils and Markets
           Vern Grubinger, UVM Extension

2:15  New England Growers Report on their Road Trip to California

2:45   Round Table: What's New in Pest Management -Hank Bissell, moderator
           Round Table: What's New in Irrigation -Dave Marchant, moderator
          (Roundtables open discussions with growers, industry and agency personnel)

4:00  Adjourn

Pesticide applicator credits in private or commercial categories 1a and 10 will be offered.

PRE-REGISTRATIONS - Must be received by Feb 6th.  Add $5 for at-the-door registrations.
$25 Members, $35 Non-Members, includes lunch and morning coffee with pastries.

Membership dues for 2005 are $35. Benefits include: A 2004-2005 Vegetable or Small Fruit Management Guide, or a book 'Managing Cover Crops' or 'Building Soils' and subscriptions to the Agriview newsletter (which contains the VT Vegetable and Berry News), and American Vegetable Grower magazine.

Mail your check to: VV&BGA, c/o Doug Johnstone, P.O, Box 701, Springfield, VT 05156

For additional information or to request special accommodations, contact Vern Grubinger,
University of Vermont Extension, 802-257-7967 ext. 13, or E-mail:


Greenhouse Tomato School. April 6, Burlington.

Alternative Energy on the Farm. May 4, Randolph Center.