CT NOFA eNewsletter
March 24, 2007
v.3 no.3
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Sign up for the e-Newsletter, please send an email to: deb@ctnofa.org


In this Issue:

Upcoming CT NOFA Events

Community Board

  • Volunteer for CT NOFA -Featured Positions
  • Work for CT NOFA
  • NOFA Organic Land Care Program Hiring a Program Manager
  • Conservation Grazing Workshop DVD Available
  • Coventry Regional Farmers' Market is accepting applications

Connecticut News and Stories

  • The Connecticut Easter Basket
  • Renewable Energy Workshops
  • Connecticut Legislative News

National and International News and Stories

  • Science and Censorship

Other Items of Interest

  • Cultivate Partnership with your Trees, Plants, Garden or Crops
  • DaversityCode.com

Upcoming CT NOFA Events

June 24, 2007 - Connecticut Organic Farm Tour - www.ctnofa.org

August 10 to 12- NOFA Summer Conference, Amherst, MA - www.nofamass.org

August 16, 2007- NOFA Organic Lawn and Turf Course - www.organiclandcare.net

September 9, 2007 - Taste! Organic Connecticut, Topmost Herb Farm, Coventry, CT - www.ctnofa.org

To view upcoming NOFA Related Events go to: http://www.nofa.org/calendar/index.php
To post an organic event, go to

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Community Board

Volunteer for CT NOFA -Featured Positions

  • Volunteer outreach coordinator Research events that we can display at, Contact them for permission to display, Develop outreach materials Go to events or help schedule other volunteers to go to event. Contact Denise D'Agostino for more information at d.dagostino@snet.net
  • Reporter Goes to CT NOFA events with camera and takes pictures, Gets people’s names that are in pictures and permission to use pictures, Writes stories for Gleanings/ press releases/ website. Contact Denise D'Agostino for more information at d.dagostino@snet.net
  • Other Opportunities: http://www.ctnofa.org/volunteer.php

Work for CT NOFA

  • CT NOFA is hiring a bookkeeper. Please send resume to Bill Duesing at CT NOFA, PO Box 164, Stevenson, CT 06491. Job description to follow.
  • CT NOFA is hiring the Gleanings Editor. Please send resume to Bill Duesing at CT NOFA, PO Box 164, Stevenson, CT 06491. Job description to follow.

NOFA Organic Land Care Program Hiring a Program Manager
The NOFA Organic Land Care Program seeks a personable and dynamic program manager who will take over leadership of our highly successful regional training and accreditation program in the new and rapidly expanding field of organic care of lawns and landscapes.

To read the complete job description, please visit: http://www.organiclandcare.net/news/JobOpp.php
For more information on the program, see our website at www.organiclandcare.net.

Conservation Grazing Workshop DVD Available
Dear Everyone. We finally have copies of the DVD of the Conservation Grazing workshop we put on last summer. The set, which includes 3 DVDs costs $2.20 if you pick it up here and $4.70 if it is mailed to you. In addition, we have a DVD of a talk given by Paula Stahl of the Green Valley Institute on the Economics of Land Use. Paula does an excellent job of presenting facts which show that open space saves taxpayers money and lowers the mill rate. These will be available for $1.00 or $3.50 for the postage and envelope if you want it mailed to you. If you would like either or both of these DVD's, please send a check or money order with your address to Jasmine Wolf, 653 Flanders Rd., Coventry, CT 06238. Thank you very much. Peace, Jasmine

Coventry Regional Farmers' Market is accepting applications
Coventry Regional Farmers' Market is accepting applications for its fourth season. The market operates 11:00 AM-2:00 PM on Sundays from June through October, 2007 on the grounds of the Museum of Connecticut Glass in Coventry. This well-organized, diverse market has a dedicated customer base and an active media presence. Market days offer the public live entertainment, an extensive festival series, sustainable living workshops, and a “Buy Local, Eat Fresh” marketing campaign features monthly chef demonstrations and “tastings” focusing on seasonal produce. For more information, please contact Market Master Roberta Wilmot at 860-742-1419 or visit the market’s website www.coventryfarmersmarket.com for vendor information and application.

We are currently seeking applications from producers of Bread/Baked Goods; Dairy; Farm-Fresh Produce; Flowers; Herbal Vinegars; Pickles; Mustards; Meat; Plants; Seeds; Sauces; Salsas; Spice Mixes; Natural Beverages; Prepared Foods; Seafood; Poultry; and Other Specialty Products. For information on vending, performing or volunteering, please call (860) 742-1419, email marketmasters@coventryfarmersmarket.com or visit us online at www.coventryfarmersmarket.com

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Connecticut News and Stories

The Connecticut Easter Basket
This Easter Basket features Connecticut farm products in a recycled basket. Their tag line is "Preserving CT farms one basket at a time". The CT Easter basket is available in nifty, low impact egg carton packaging or in limited quantities in more traditional, recycled Easter baskets.

Baskets contain one 5 oz. jam, 1 mini maple syrup, one individually wrapped maple sugar candy, one packet of seeds, one beeswax votive candle, and a sampler of 5 soaps. Baskets are $14 apiece or, in the spirit of the cartons they're packaged in, $12 apiece for a dozen or more. (i.e. group orders accepted). Additional individually packaged maple candies are available for $1 apiece. Other items are also available individually and custom baskets as well.

You can disassemble the baskets and hide the contents and have the kids collect them egg hunt style and/or then hunt for their location of origin on the CT Farm map that is included and it becomes an educational event. For more information or to place an order, contact Becky at BSeashoreMay@aol.com

Renewable Energy Workshops
Friday, March 30th, 2007

  • “Wind Turbines for your Farm??” 10 AM- Noon Bob Chew, Solarwrights, will give an introduction to the turbines that they sell, and how to start determining the economic feasibility for your farm.
  • “Farmers Reducing Energy Costs Economically” Noon Lunchtime discussion of funding and feasibility of various energy saving options.

Please let me know of your interest in these two sessions, so that I can determine the location. Probably in the Brooklyn area. Thanks, Joyce Meader (860-774-9600) joyce.meader@uconn.edu

Connecticut Legislative News
Both the "No unnecessary Idling" Bill for cars and trucks and the ban on lawn-care pesticides on the grounds of all schools - public and private - K-8 just passed the Environment Committee.

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National and International News and Stories

WEST LAFAYETTE, Indiana., March 21, 2007 - Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns announced today the availability of $176.5 million in loan guarantees and $11.4 million in grants to support investments in renewable energy and energy efficiency improvements by agricultural producers and small businesses.

The Administration’s farm bill proposals recommend a more than $1.6 billion increase in renewable energy related funding. This includes a $2.1 billion loan guarantee program, a $500 million bioenergy and bioproducts research program, $500 million for alternative energy and energy efficiency grants, and other initiatives. Details are available at www.usda.gov/farm bill.

Applications for grants must be completed and submitted to the appropriate USDA Rural Development state office postmarked no later than May 18. The deadline for submitting loan applications as well as for loan and grant combinations is July 2. For more information, refer to the announcement in the March 22 Federal Register or contact any state Rural Development office. Further information on rural programs is available at a local USDA Rural Development office or by visiting USDA’s web site at http://www.rurdev.usda.gov.

Local USDA Rural Development Offices:

  • Windsor Area Office: Area Director - Mary Grasso; 100 Northfield Drive; Windsor, CT 06095; (860) 688-7725 x. 4 mary.grasso@ct.usda.gov; Servicing: Tolland, Middlesex, Hartford, Litchfield, New Haven, and Fairfield Counties
  • Norwich Area Office: Area Director-Johan Strandson; 238 West Town Street; Norwich, CT 06360; (860) 859-5218 x. 3004; johan.strandson@ct.usda.gov; Servicing: Windham and New London Counties
Science and Censorship
From  Integrity in Science Watch. ExxonMobil lobbyist Philip Cooney yesterday admitted making 181 editing changes to climate change reports while serving as chief of staff for the White House Council on Environmental Quality. In sworn testimony before the House Government Reform and Oversight Committee, Cooney said he relied on a 2001 report prepared by the National Academy of Sciences. "I had the authority and responsibility to make recommendations to the documents in question, under an established interagency review process," Cooney said. Cooney spent 15 years working as a lobbyist for the American Petroleum Institute before assuming his role at the White House.

Several Democrats questioned Cooney's objectivity.  "When I look at the role you played at API and at the White House, they seem virtually identical," Chairman Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) said. The issue of censorship is also being pursued by the House Science and Technology Committee, which sent letters to the heads of 11 agencies last week asking how they handle media requests for scientific information. The letters were prompted in part by revelations earlier this month that the Fish and Wildlife Service had instructed employees in Alaska not to discuss climate change, polar bears, or sea ice while traveling in countries around the Arctic region. The House last week passed a whistleblower protection act that would prohibit political appointees and high-ranking agency officials from interfering with government scientists' right to publish and speak out on public issues.  

 A New York Times  article criticizing the science behind the global warming documentary "An Inconvenient Truth" cited several skeptics without noting their industry ties, including Richard S. Lindzen, Bjorn Lomborg, Benny Peiser, Paul Reiter, and Roy Spencer

The Burlington Free Press referenced climate change skeptic S. Fred Singer but did not disclose his financial tiesto industry.

By Wayne Roberts NOW Magazine. Global warming deniers, their credibility shot down to the level of flat-earthers by the release of the U.N.-sponsored science report on climate change, have morphed from climate skeptics into economic skeptics, who simply oppose the big tough expensive job of Communist-style government interventions to force the economy into carbon-free ways.

The skeptics don't have a leg to stand on here either, according to recent findings on local and organic farming - one of the lead candidates for government incentive and infrastructure programs designed to stabilize the climate. Without wishing to give any readers an unfair leg up in the global competition to win Sir Richard Branson's $25 million prize for the best gimmick for taking global warming gases out of the atmosphere, the answer's right under Sir Richard's feet - in carbon- or tilth-rich organic farming measures that store more carbon in the soil. Soil is the global warming gas storage motherlode, a "sink" (as the wonks call it) that can hold about three times more carbon than all the world's plants and trees, as long as soil is not disturbed by heavy industry-style farm equipment and methods.

Aside from disturbing soil stability, the modern package of agribusiness and corporate-processed and transported agri-food products is a major energy pig, accounting for about a third of all global warming gases. By contrast, support for local and organic farmers can profitably take food-related global warming emissions from this sector back to 1990 levels required by the Kyoto treaty, while also yielding improved increased incomes for farmers, enhanced community vitality in rural areas, and improved health among eaters.

Looking at agricultural change through a global warming lens provides a win-win deal for everyone at lower costs that today's bail-outs and subsidies of schlock food, says Rod MacRae, leading international policy wonk in the area of organic transition policies, and author of a newly-released report that provides gruesome detail on simple measures that could give Ontario farmers a foothold in the booming billion-dollar-a-year organic market at the farmers' doorway. Read the whole article at: http://www.nowtoronto.com/issues/2007-02-15/news_story3.php

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Other Items of Interest

Cultivate Partnership with your Trees, Plants, Garden or Crops
Part 1: Coming from the Plant’s Point of View ––By Dr. Jim Conroy and Ms. Basia Alexander. Spring is the time of new life for plants. The sap begins to rise, so buds swell as trees and perennials awaken from winter’s dormancy. New growth is there. You can’t see the flowers or leaves yet, but you know that they are all there…to arrive in the succession that only the plant can unfold.

With trees, plants, gardens and crops, people have three choices: (1) take this unfolding of new life for granted, or (2) watch it unfold and be in awe of it, or (3) watch in awe AND be in partnership with it! Adding partnership to the wonderment is a most beautiful and easy option for you. Anyone can do it! How?

Begin in a nature setting–your yard, garden, land or go to park. Or, you may go to a greenhouse or be with a single plant in your home. Get into a “quiet space” of your own. Listen to the quiet of Nature, not the noise outside. Let yourself be caught up in the quiet inside–not the bustle of everyday life. Let your heart begin to feel the awe of everything around you–notice its beauty and majesty as new life comes forth. Start to notice what is going on for the trees or plants: the buds are swelling, the color of stems is changing. Observe any wintering-over problems. For example, buds may have swelled in last December’s warmth then froze with late January and February’s extreme cold. Note whether the trees have few buds or have broken branches from ice and snow. Quiet observation leads to deeper perception.

Let your heart feel the Growth Energy surging up the tree or plant with its sap. Put your hands on the tree with feet firmly on the soil. Or put fingers gently on a houseplant. Patiently, be there with it in your quiet space. You may begin to feel the energy in your heart or hands. It may feel like serenity in your heart or tingling in your hands…or both! Or, you may visualize some image or hear some inner music or beat. Even if you think you feel nothing, just observe the details. Whatever you experience, just be with it.

From your heart, tell the tree or plant that you want to be in partnership with it…now and throughout the growing season. Then, pause. You may feel/sense/know/hear/see a message from it. It may send you a personal message. Or, it may be telling you what it needs or wants. Ah-hah!! The partnership has begun! Be engaged! Start to come from the plant’s point of view, letting go of your human perspective. What does the tree need or want? What is the plant telling you? Just be open to what’s going on and the answer will come either at that moment or later. In whatever way, your overall awareness will be heightened and you’ll pay closer attention to the tree, plant, garden or crop in the future.

What’s the possibility? Create a beautiful landscape or garden together? Create a bountiful crop? Create a lush environment that is peaceful or fun?! In your partnership, you will determine what it becomes. Let it unfold. You have the opportunity to feel/sense/know/hear/see messages from the trees, plants, garden or crops “coming from the plant’s point of view” and have the plants give back to you, too. Continue to meet in this partnership regularly! Enjoy the results while exchanging gratitude and love as your partnership matures with the seasons.

Part 2 of this article will continue with more information coming from the plant’s point of view as well as practical help and partnership suggestions. Jim Conroy, PhD, Plant Pathology and Founder/President, has developed an alternative health care system for fixing stressed or declining trees and plants from the inside-out! He provides the service to homeowners, growers and plant professionals. Ms. Basia Alexander, General Manager/Instructor, joins Dr. Conroy in teaching Tree Centrics™ and Tree Whispering™ classes to tree and plant lovers and plant professionals, too. For more information about the services and classes, contact Plant Health Alternatives, LLC, P.O. Box 90, Morris Plains, NJ, www.PlantHealthAlternatives.com, 201-650-1231. © 2007 Plant Health Alternatives, LLC

A secret held for thousands of years is about to be exposed at DaversityCode.com. Join animal symbologist Robert Penguin and the dashing agent Sophie Minnow as they race to expose the greatest lie ever told. Can they crack the Bio DaVersity Code, or will they fall victim to the lurking killer just a step behind? Sure it's just a cartoon, but this may be the most important movie you'll see this year. In fact, mankind's very survival may depend upon it! Check it out at http://www.democracyinaction.com/dia/track.jsp?key=104173420&url_num=3&url=http://www.daversitycode.com/

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To post an organic event, go to http://www.nofa.org/calendar/insert.php

To post an organic-related job, go to: http://www.nofa.org/exchange/submit.php

PO Box 164 Stevenson, CT 06491

phone: (203) 888-5146 fax: (203) 888-9280