Start Farming Blog
If you have not done it yet, now is the time to finish up your crop plan for next year. Soon it will be time to start seedlings and the whirlwind will begin. At a recent CSA day organized by Lehigh County Extension’s Brian Moyer, I shared some tips for crop planning. What follows is a teaser, just the first few steps of the crop planning procedure I put together based on the great crop planning information Josh Volk from Slow Hand Farm recently shared with us. For the full procedure and example spreadsheets click the links below.
USDA Finalizes New Microloan Program Microloans up to $35,000 aim to assist small farmers, veterans, and disadvantaged producers
As effective marketers we are comfortable with the practice of being at our best when we produce and market what the customer actually wants. Unfortunately, these wants are a dynamic mix that is influenced by many factors. Trying to get a handle on shifting of our many customers’ needs can be a challenge.
Thinking about growing some perennials to sell? Maybe you already have some perennials in production and you need information to improve your production system. Join us for an educational day with a Penn State expert!
Think about who your ideal CSA member is. Find them and keep them.
Upcoming online course.
With five times as many farmers over 55 than under 35 and more than a thousand farmers planning to retire in Pennsylvania in the next ten years; we need new farmers to feed the world local food. In 2009 Penn State Extension launched the Start Farming Program, responding to the need for new farmers and an overwhelming interest in farm start-up from community members. After three years, thirteen hundred participants in fifty three Penn State Extension Start Farming programs have learned tools for success.
There is an affordable way to guarantee income flow from your farm operation. The key is to be certain your farm has a recognized record keeping system in place. Historical farm performance is the basis for your guarantee.
Two new videos are available. One explaining the tools needed to shear sheep and preparing and caring for the shears, and one explaining the six positions to shear a sheep.
November 29 webinar will discuss AGR-Lite and other options.
Equipment is expensive but often can pay for itself quickly if you get the right piece for your farm. We would like to share a few considerations and tips we have learned through a recent equipment demonstration at the Seed Farm New Farmer Training and Incubator Program in Emmaus, PA as well as from our wonderful farmer neighbors and a few good resources. This is the second of three articles.
Woman to Woman: Pay it Forward December 7, 2012 State College, PA
Tomatillos (Physalis ixocarpa) are in the solanaceae family which includes tomatoes, potatoes, eggplant and peppers.
Beginning farmers who need to enhance their knowledge about organic vegetable production, ecological plant-disease management and soil basics will find useful information in a new series of fact sheets offered by Penn State Extension.
If you are new to farming or thinking of starting your farm next year, soil testing is probably the last thing on your mind. But come winter, when you are doing your planning for next year, you will want to have that soil test in hand. You will need the results to calculate what nutrients to apply and how much you need so you can complete your orders and have your crop plan ready. Fertile soil is the basis for healthy crops, don’t leave it as an after-thought.
The Seed Farm launches four new vegetable equipment how-to videos designed to help vegetable farmers choose appropriate equipment and use new equipment successfully.
Farm record keeping is usually not the reason we became farmers. However, there is much value to be had when we establish a system that not only meets our legal obligations, but also allows us to study and explore how we can become what we want to be.
Last month Gayle Ganser, co-owner of Eagle Point Farm, shared tips to farm market success from good signage to managing customer flow at a meeting for farm apprentices hosted by the Collaborative Regional Alliance for Farmer Training (CRAFT) in collaboration with Penn State Extension, Start Farming.
Cover crops can help improve soil quality, save manure nitrogen or fix nitrogen for the following crop, supply rescue forage and can lead to improved ground and surface water quality.