VEGETABLE AND BERRY GROWERS WINTER CALENDAR OF EVENTS
Dec. 1-18 Managing For Success: Farm and Labor Management. A 3-day course offered at 4 locations: Sheldon, Middlebury, White River Jct. VT and Concord NH. (802) 656-0648
Dec. 5 New England Vegetable and Berry Growers Meeting, Waltham MA (508) 378-2546
Dec. 5-6 Diversified Organic Vegetable Production workshop, Albany NY (518) 426-9331
Dec. 10 Vegetable Growers Soil Fertility Workshop, Argyle NY (518) 746-2560
Jan. 8 New England Vegetable and Berry Growers meeting, Chicopee, MA. (508) 378-2546
Jan. 13-15 Workforce Management for Farms and Horticultural Businesses, Camp Hill PA. (607) 255-7654
Jan. 16-17 Biological Priciples of Organic Agriculture workshop, Albany NY. (518) 426-9331
Jan. 19-21 New Jersey Annual Vegetable (and Berry) Convention, Atlantic City NJ. (609) 985-4382
Jan. 20-22 Great Lakes Vegetable Growers Convention and North American Farmers Direct Marketing Conference, Grand Rapids MI (810) 234-4126
Jan. 27 VT Vegetable and Berry Growers Farm Show Meeting, 1-4 pm. Basement of green church down the hill from Barre municipal auditorium. (802) 257-7967
Feb. 5 NH Vegetable Growers Meeting, Farm and Forest Expo, Manchester NH. (603) 862-3208
Feb. 6 New England Vegetable and Berry Growers Meeting, Waltham MA. (508) 378-2546
Feb. 7-10 North American Strawberry Growers Assn. Meeting, Orlando FL (905)945-9057
Feb. 11-12 North American Bramble Growers Assn. Meeting, Orlando FL
Feb. 9-11 New York State Vegetable Conference and Trade Show, Syracuse NY. (607) 539-7648
Feb. 13 Northeast Organic Farming Association of VT Winter Conference. Vermont Technical College, Randolph Center. (802) 434-4122
Feb. 12-13 Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture Conference, State College PA. (814) 349-9856
Feb. 16 VT Vegetable and Berry Growers Annual Meeting. Rutland Holiday Inn, junction of Routes 4 and 7. (802) 257-7967
Feb. 20 Creating Successful Grower Marketing Cooperatives, Albany NY (518) 426-9331
NEW SARE FARMER GRANTS INCLUDE AGROFORESTRY
The Northeast Region Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) will offer a special expansion of its 1999 Farmer Grant program to include agroforestry projects. The deadline for all Northeast SARE farmer grant applications including agroforestry projects is December 11, 1998. The region will award up to $170,000 in farmer grants, with approximately $22,000 reserved for agroforestry projects.
Agroforestry includes many different practices in which trees and crops or livestock are combined to help make farms more diverse and sustainable. Examples of agroforestry include: alley cropping and forest farming, in which crops are grown between or under trees, and the use of trees and shrubs to conserve, preserve, or protect the environment. Projects in which high-value specialty crops such as ginseng or shiitake mushrooms are cultivated under the protection of a forest canopy could be eligible for these grants. Other approaches to agroforestry include establishing windbreaks and protective buffers along rivers and lakes, and silvopasture, the practice of combining tree production with livestock grazing.
Northeast SARE will consider two kinds of agroforestry proposals. The first kind will be initiated and managed by farmers and growers, and will follow the framework of the existing Farmer Grants program. The second kind of proposal will be also be farm?based, but coordinated by technical professions like extension agents or field staff from the USDA.
Under this program's guidelines, small woodlot operations common to the Northeast will generally not be eligible, unless producers expand forests or orchards to multiple uses such as forage production or crops. Grant application materials include eligibility information.
Applications and other materials are available through SARE. Contact SARE at 802-656-0471, or visit the SARE website at http://www.uvm.edu/~nesare/. The mailing address is Northeast SARE at 10 Hills Building, University of Vermont, Burlington Vermont, 05405?0082.
(From Scout Proft, Someday Farm, Dorset)
___ set personal goals: family time, something to pass on, commitment to educating others.
___ set economic goals: what we can live on, what we can do without, how much we want to save.
___ develop a variety of products and a plan to generate income throughout the year.
___ identify "what ifs?" and plan how to shift gears with little economic loss.
___ develop many markets: sell to as many different kinds of people as close to home as possible.
___ develop unique products: "our own", easily grown, dear to our hearts, not part of a fad.
___ pace the projects: balance tedious and interesting work, schedule off hours and vacations.
___ have realistic outside commitments: to boards, fairs, trade shows, tours, presentations, etc.
___ allow quality time: set limits to work so you can be available to your partner and children
COMING SOON TO VERMONT?
Fresh on the heels of the mad cow scare in England, Britain's Vegetarian Society is seeking to convince more meat-eaters to consider the vegetarian lifestyle. The carrot the society is dangling in front of meat-eaters is portraying vegetables as sex objects. The society produced a 50-second advertising spot that shows suggestively shaped chili peppers, melon fondling and flaccid asparagus. The ad was shown in 250 movie theaters in June. The society reports there are 4 million Brits who don't eat meat and the vegetarian ranks are growing by 5,000 converts every week. Source: Reuters. (Leonard Perry)