Gleanings
August 2015
   


Technical Assistance for  Farmers
Coming Together
Connecticut's Beginning & Experienced Organic Farmers,
contracts experienced organic farmers from around the state to provide short-term technical assistance to Connecticut's beginning farmers.

More about the program HERE
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From the Executive Director   

    
Jeff Cordulack 

I've been looking forward to joining CT NOFA since June and now, as the sunny days of August arrive in Connecticut, I am settling down into my new role as the Executive Director. It is very exciting to be on-board and I've learned so much in just three weeks. A few of the highlights so far have included getting to know the fabulous staff and spending time with CT NOFA's founder, Bill Duesing.  

 

I have also visited three local farms (Old Solar, Waldingfield & Beltane); attended a workshop about how to protect farmland and attract prospective farmers with ground leases; met with the Board of Directors; and sent out an 'advocacy alert', asking our membership to call on their elected officials to stand against HR 1599 in order to protect our state's right to label genetically engineered foods. Next, I look forward to meeting as many farmers, land care professionals, market managers, organic gardeners, and conservation advocates, as possible.  

 

I am also excited about the many events the staff have put in place for Fall 2015 and beyond. A few of the bigger ones are the family-friendly Organic Harvest Jamboree at Waldingfield Farm (Sunday, Oct. 4) and the Fall 2015 Accreditation Course in Organic Land Care at the Audubon Center in Greenwich (Oct. 26 & 27 and Nov. 2 & 3). Other not-to-be-missed events are the Homesteading Tour at Henny Penny Farm (Saturday, Sept. 19) and the 41st Annual NOFA Summer Conference in Amherst, MA (Aug. 14-16).  

 

Come September, we will have more news about our exciting events ahead. In the meantime, check our website, enjoy the harvest, and let us know about events in your community that would benefit from CT NOFA's involvement.  

 

Of course, the input of our members is always welcome as we work to further 'cultivate an organic Connecticut', so please don't hesitate to contact me anytime.  

 

I look forward to hearing from you.

 

Jeff Cordulack | jeff@ctnofa.org | 203-613-8813


Waldingfield Farm owner Patrick Horan (second from right) in the kale fields with Farm Manager Jed Borken, Assistant Manager Will O'Meara, & Head of Harvest Lindsay Jenkinson (right to left). Enjoy their veggies and more at a farm-to-plate lunch with live bluegrass, organic beverages, and family-friendly farm fun during CT NOFA's Organic Harvest Jamboree on Sunday, October 4th from 1-4 PM. Tickets (limited supply) now available online.

 
 Western Connecticut Farm Crawl
 

by Bill Duesing

 

For August, I'm taking a vacation from the Gleanings essay to highlight a few long time CT NOFA members and their farms.
 
On an absolutely beautiful early August Sunday, the long running New Milford Farmers Market sponsored its First Annual Western Connecticut Farm Crawl, an open house at many of the farms which sell at the market. Three of the farms are certified organic.  I got to two of them and one other.  I learned a lot.

Continue reading HERE
 
 NOFA Summer Conference
August 14 - 15, 2015
UMass Amherst

 

The theme for this year's Conference is "Healing the Climate, Healing Ourselves: Regeneration through Microbiology". The main conference features 144 individual sessions with 27 different topic areas. Workshops address organic farming, gardening, land care, draft animals, homesteading, sustainability, nutrition, food politics, activism, and more. Details here.  

There will be a free pre-conference meeting on Friday, August 14, 2015 at  9:00am. The Northeast Gathering On Domestic Fair Trade will cover the history of fair trade, its current state, and ideas for the future.  Find out more here

 
Shop for CT NOFA!
September 17, 2015

 

Several times a year, Whole Foods stores hold community giving days (otherwise known as "5% Days") where five percent of that day's net sales are donated to a local nonprofit or educational organization. The groups that benefit from these 5% Days are as varied as the communities themselves.

 

 

On September 17th, every Whole Foods store in Connecticut will be donating 5% of their sales to help support our mission and programs. Here's a list of all the locations, so mark the date and shop for CT NOFA!
 
Upcoming Events
 
For a full listing of events see our events calendar.
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Plant Science Day  ~ stop by our table (#75) and say hello to the CT NOFA staff!
August 5, 2015, 9:30am - 4pm
Hamden, CT  

The Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station (CAES) invites you to attend Plant Science Day 2015.  This annual event is held at Lockwood Farm, the Station's 75-acre research farm located in Hamden, CT.  It features a day of scientific inquiry, discovery, and updates on research advances in agriculture, food safety, the environment and public health.  The event is free, open to the public and takes place rain or shine. Details here.   

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Henny Penny Farm ~ CT NOFA Homesteading Workshop    

Saturday, September 19, 2015
10:00am-12:00 pm
Ridgefield, CT 

CT NOFA Organic Harvest Jamboree 

Sunday, October 4, 2015

1:00 to 4:00 pm

Waldingfield Farm

Washington, CT

 

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CT Sierra Club Potluck Picnic and Hike

August 8, 2015, 10:30am
Haddam, CT
Come hike - and celebrate - the National Park Service's recently designated New England Trail. Expect intermediate terrain with some short steep parts at a medium pace. Bring boots, water. Then join us for a potluck picnic, socialize, and learn about our environmental activism and fun outings going on in state.  More info on the hike and the picnic.

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Webinar: Pilot Project for Procurement of Unprocessed Fruits and Vegetables

August 13, 2015, 2:00pm to 3:00pm 
The goal of the Pilot Project for Procurement of Unprocessed Fruits and Vegetables is to develop additional opportunities for schools to purchase fresh fruits and vegetables with entitlement funding, while using pre-existing commercial distribution channels and school relationships with growers, produce wholesalers, and distributors. The pilot supports the use of locally-grown foods in school meal programs using entitlement funds. Details and registration here. 

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Fall Seedling Sale & Field Walk with the Farmer
 
August 15, 2015, 10:00am - 2:00pm 

Common Ground High School, New Haven 

A whole harvest of fall produce begins now... broccoli, collard greens, chard, scallions, lettuce, cilantro, kale, bok choi and more! WIC & SNAP accepted. Details here. And join our Field Walk with our farm manager to see how we use sustainable growing techniques to cultivate a bountiful garden. See how we are transitioning many beds for fall planting. Details here and here

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NOFA Organic Land Care
online Organic Lawn Care Certificate course. 
Click HERE for more information.


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  Organic Land Care Program Taking Action to Protect LI Sound   

 

     

 

  Check out the latest project
updates
here>   

    

and read about our Three Rivers Community College project in The Day

 

 

Announcing the 2015/2016 Accreditation Course dates!  

 

 
Business Member Profiles 
 
Orange, CT
 

Specialty Agricultural Products is a family-owned business dedicated to serving our customer's needs for over 20 years now. Scott and Lauren Fallon are both University of Rhode Island graduates with degrees in the agricultural field and had experience in farming and greenhouse work before starting the company. We are proud of our work and pricing.

                             

We continue to find and research better ways to install deer fencing with new methods and new products (high tensile woven wire or vinyl coated hexagonal wire for example). We install and service a variety of fencing products in the northeast of America. We distribute and supply customers from coast to coast across the US.

  

New Haven, CT  

 

On the farm, in the classroom, and around the world, the Yale Sustainable Food Program grows food literate leaders.

 

Food offers us the opportunity to engage with the world around us. By gathering people around a common table, the Yale Sustainable Food Program encourages interdisciplinary learning and creative as well as critical thinking. It inspires big questions and crucial research that address our pressing need for more sustainable food systems.

 

The Sustainable Food Program is the steward of two small farms used for learning and research, one on Yale's main campus and the other at Yale's West Campus. We support both curricular and extra-curricular learning, and serve as a hub to connect Yale's students to opportunities for study and practice in food, health, and the environment.

 

 


Gardens & Turf
East Haddam, CT

Gardens & Turf is a resource for gardeners of all levels of experience. We can design a garden that fits your wants, time constraints, and budget, as well as design and plant containers to beautify your front steps, deck or patio, or enhance your garden beds. We'll work with you in your garden, teaching techniques for pruning, transplanting/planting, plant placement, mulching, watering, dealing with plant problems, container planting and care, and advice on tools. Gardens & Turf will advise you during nursery shopping, helping you choose plants that fit your site and gardening abilities, and help site your purchases after a plant-buying spree.

In addition to garden design, consultation, and personal garden coaching for property owners in the lower Connecticut River Valley, Gardens & Turf provides lawn mowing for properties in East Haddam, Hadlyme, Lyme and Westbrook. Our staff is accredited in Organic Land Care through the Northeast Organic Farming Association - NOFA Organic Land Care program.

Tap into our 30+ years of hands-on gardening experience to keep your garden surroundings beautiful.

 

Haven't seen your business featured here yet? Fill out this form to give us more information on your CT NOFA member business!  

 
In the News  

 

American Farmland Trust releases updated farmland protection guide for CT. More>   

 

Foodtank highlights 16 successful permaculture projects. More>    

 

Suburbanites contribute more to climate change. More> 

   

"Voices of the Soil" Essay and Video Contest taking entries till August 31. Details> 

 

Wood Prairie Farm reported on a great resource for manuals for used farm equipment.  See their latest newsletter for details. More> 

 

School Garden Network News 

Growing and Learning


Common Ground High School Educator Survey
Common Ground is currently planning their schedule of professional development opportunities for educators during the 2015-16 school year. Before they finalize their schedule, they would like your feedback.

 

Please fill out the following short survey to help Common Ground create workshops that meet your needs.

 

New Report Compiles Wisconsin Farm-to-School Experiences 
The Wisconsin Clearinghouse compiled the experiences of 14 organizations in Wisconsin that received funding to increase access to healthy food systems in their regions. Advancing Farm to School: Lessons from the Field contains case studies, lessons learned, and a resource section.

Michigan Program Introduces Local Foods in Schools
The National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition (NSAC) blogs about Michigan's Farm Fresh Food Days, designed to introduce local produce to students. Read more here.  

 

We'd love to share your school garden with our readers!  Feel free to send in any articles, news, photos or any questions you may have.

 

  

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Deb Legge
Gleanings Editor 

203-308-2584

deb@ctnofa.org