Integrating Irrigation Into Your Grazing System: Thursday August 4, 2016

Hescock Cows

Joe and Kathleen Hescock’s Elysian Fields has been certified organic since 1998, where they currently manage 225 milking cows on pasture. This workshop will look at how they have recently integrated a traveling gun irrigation system into their grazing program. We will discuss the impacts of installing pasture irrigation with opportunities to maximize dry matter yields, shorten recovery periods and increase the number of rotations.

When: Thursday August 4, 2016 at 12:30pm to 2:30pm
Where: Elysian Fields, 3658 Route 74W, Shoreham, VT
Cost: $10 for farmers, $20 all others
Register: At the NOFA VT Events Page

This workshop is part of the Summer Organic Dairy Series put on by the Northeast Organic Farming Association of Vermont (NOFA-VT) and UVM Extension Northwest Crops and Soils Program and the Champlain Valley Crop, Soil and Pasture Program.

Aeration Tillage & Precision Ag Field Day: Tuesday August 2, 2016

The Champlain Valley Crop, Soils, and Pasture Team will lead a hands-on discussion of benefits and challenges of aeration tillage on hay ground. We will examine:

  • Compaction relief
  • Manure incorporation
  • Potential drawbacks

Results from a 2-year SARE research project studying the aeration of permanent hay land will be presented and discussed. Additionally, GPS guidance assist will be discussed as a way to make aeration tillage more efficient.

When: Tuesday August 2, 2016 at 10am – 12pm
Where: Doug Gould Farm – 2072 Nortontown Rd., Addison VT
RSVP: Rico Balzano-(802)-388-4969 ext 338 or or rico.balzano@uvm.edu
Download the Flyer

Special thanks to Doug Gould.

University of Vermont Extension and U.S. Department of Agriculture, cooperating, offer education and employment to everyone without regard to race, color, national origin, gender, religion, age, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, and marital or familial status. To request a disability related accommodation to participate in this program, please contact Karen Gallott at (802) 388-4969 or 1-800-956-1125 (toll-free in Vt. only) by July 28, 2016.

Conservation Work Highlighted

“These changes have resulted in the reduction of soil and nutrient runoff from more than 27,763 acres of cropland and livestock production facilities. When including practices implemented since 2011, that number grows to an impressive 86,382 acres.”  140 Farms Reduced Their Nutrient Runoff – just in the past year.  How Did They Do It?

  • Nutrient Management Plans: 12,311 acres
  • Manure Management: 2,255 acres
  • Conservation Mulch Tillage: 1,547 Acres
  • Cover Crops: 8,590 Acres
  • No-Till Planting: 3,060 Acres

Read more in the latest Extension Quarterly Newsletter:

Quarterly

 

Fall Soil Health Workshop And Field Day

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 Join Us as we discuss soil health, cover crops, no-till and more, share information from our research and demonstration trials, hear from farmers about their successes in Addison County, and welcome guest speaker Ray Archuleta.

 

 

 

Ray Archuleta is a Conservation Agronomist at the NRCS East National Technology Center, in Greensboro, North Carolina. Ray teaches soil health and the principles of agroecology throughout

the country.  He has 25 years of experience with the Natural Resources Conservation Service in many different states, has also served in the Peace Corps, and holds a B.S. in Agricultural Biology.

When: October 28th, 2015. 10:00 am to 3:00 pm

Where: Middlebury, VT. Begins at the American Legion; after lunch we will visit Foster Brother’s Farm.

Cost: Farmers attend and eat for FREE, but ONLY with registration. Others, $20, which includes a hot lunch.

— REGISTRATION WEBSITE  —     

www.regonline.com/soilhealthworkshop

For More Information:

Oct 28 Soil Health Field Day Flyer

Questions? Contact Karen Gallott at karen.gallot@uvm.edu or 802-388-4969 ext 330

To request a disability-related accommodation to participate in this program, contact UVM Extension by 10/07/15 at 802-388-4969 or toll-free in Vermont at 1-800-956-1125 so we may assist you.

 

What is your Watermark?

A new, locally produced movie addresses water quality far and wide, and focuses on ways that different sectors of the community are working to conserve and protect water. There is a strong emphasis on Lake Champlain and phosphorus best management. Mount Mansfield Media has teamed with ‘The H-Team’ to produce this film.

You can check out the video on YoutTube here,

Or check out their website for more information on the project: http://whatsyourwatermark.com/

 

Spring 2015, Soil Health Field Day

Soil Health Field Day Flyer_Hoorman 2015The snow is melting, the sap is flowing (hopefully), and the crew at CV Crops is dreaming of spring!

Join us for our Spring 2015 Soil Health Field Day

April 21st, 9:00 am – 3:00 pm.

We will be hosting Jim Hoorman, from Ohio State University Extension (PhD candidate and farmer), to discuss:SoilHealth

  • The Biology of Soil Compaction
  • Using Cover Crops to Keep Phosphorus Out of Surface Water
  • Economics of Cover Crops & Weed Suppression

    Soil Health Field Day Flyer_Hoorman 2015_Page_1

 (click on the picture above to view the pdf)

We will meet at the American Legion, have a hot lunch, and then head out to the field to visit Vander Wey’s Nea-Tocht Farm. If you are a farmer, you can attend this field day FOR FREE, due to the generous contributions of Caring Dairy and the Champlain Valley Farmer Coalition.

Service professions are welcome to attend, there will be a $30 fee. Five CCA credits available from this event.

Either way, we request that you register.

You may do so by either calling us at (802) 388-4969, or by registering online: https://www.regonline.com/soilhealth

 

Recent Planter Clinic

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Jeff Sanders Speaking About No-Till Corn Planter Maintenance.
Jeff Sanders Speaking About No-Till Corn Planter Maintenance.

Last week we held a corn planter clinic, with a focus on no-till equipment maintenance. Rico Balzano organized the event and Jeff Sanders (NW Soils and Crops Team) spoke to a crowd that included about 30 (+) farmers, and other agriculture professionals. It was a very successful event, with constructive discussion. The clinic benefited both those considering no-till and those doing regular maintenance or upgrades on their equipment.

Jeff Sanders highlighted many different parts of the no-till corn planter that should be looked at and maintained for optimum performance. He highlighted the importance in no-till for successful opening and closing of the seed slot, and that maintenance should be focused on those pieces. He discussed different options to achieve that objective, and what people have had the most success with in VT. Jeff also talked about the importance of a level planter, of proper depth, and of seed placement in the seed slot. Proper maintenance of the planter will prevent doubles and skips, and ensure the slot is V-shaped and not W-shaped. He recommends getting off the tractor and looking at what the planter is doing and ensuring that it is planting properly. Jeff also emphasized that weather conditions and soil moisture will affect how successful no-till planting is, and particularly that fields that are saturated may not seed well.

Missed the Clinic? Do not despair.

Check out the checklist fact-sheet which can be downloaded:

Fact Sheet_No-Till Planter Checklist_2015.

We will hopefully be holding more events in the future! In the mean time, if you have any questions, feel free to contact us.

Rico Balzano can be reached at (802) 388-4969 ext 338

or rico.balzano@uvm.edu

New Across the Fence Video

The 2015 No-Till and Cover Crop Symposium was featured recently on Across the Fence!

The t.v. segment also features Kirsten Workman and Jeff Sanders discussing research, trials, and use of both cover crops and no-till in Vermont.

Check out the video HERE!

Interested in trying a new practice on your farm this coming year?  We are happy to help you determine the best fit for your farm!

Contact Us!

 

 

Participate in the Annual Vermont Farm Show!

Judging at the VT Farm Show
Judging at the VT Farm Show

The annual Vermont Farm Show will be held on January the 27th-29th (Tues-Thurs), at the Champlain Valley Expo, in Essex Junction, VT. All community members are welcome and there is something for everyone! Children, and children at heart, always enjoy the equipment and animals on display, the public can come learn about innovative agriculture practices happening in their community, and ‘foodies’ will enjoy the Wednesday ‘Buy Local Market’. There will be opportunities to have friendly and engaging conversation with a variety of representatives in the agricultural community – from seed, machinery and product vendors, trade organizations, Extension agents, state and national technical advisers, and financial organizations.

Growers, artists and home-chefs can submit products for the annual product competition. Many types of products will be on display including maple syrup and maple products, vegetables, apples, field crops, Christmas trees and wreaths, honey, eggs, home goods, and fiber arts. The UVM Middlebury Extension office is your local drop-off site for product entries. Please drop off entries by noon on Monday January 26th. Just be sure to fill out your tag with appropriate information and follow product entry rules. For more information about the Farm Show and the product entry rules, visit the website: http://www.vtfarmshow.com or call (802) 461-8774. Feel free to contact the UVM Extension Middlebury office, (802) 338-4969 or (800) 956-1125, e-mail: champlain.crops@uvm.edu or stop by: 23 Pond Lane Suite 300, Middlebury, VT.

Innovation is in the air…and on the ground

by Kirsten Workman, Agronomy Outreach Professional

(Originally published on the WAgN Blog on May 28, 2014)

 

The growing season if finally starting to take hold. I have seen corn plants poking through the ground, vegetable crops starting to look like something edible, and first cut hay is on the ground in some places with hopes of a dry day to bale tomorrow. And with a new growing season comes all the hope and suspense of another year…all the potential for the best year ever or the worst, or maybe something in between. Farmers are going all out this week. We may not be able to predict what the weather will do this year, but one thing is for certain. Farmers in Vermont are innovative.

Planting Green:  no-till planting corn into a standing crop of winter rye
Planting Green: no-till planting corn into a standing crop of winter rye

As I traveled from farm to farm today, I had the pleasure of talking with several different farmers – all of whom are trying something new this year. I saw fields of winter rye that were ‘planted green,’ that is no-till planted corn into standing rye before the cover crop was terminated. Innovation. I measured out 16 strips in a soon-to-be corn field with one farmer to help analyze two different reduced tillage systems this year. Innovation. He wants to interseed three different cover crops over those strips once the corn is up. Innovation. Another farm rounded out a SARE partnership project that analyzed two different cover crop mixes by no-till planting corn into those cover crops right next to a conventionally managed part of the field to see how these two systems will perform on his farm. Innovation. Another farm asked to borrow our GPS and try their hand at some precision agriculture. Innovation. A vegetable farmer is trying out different strategies to implement cover crops in his rotations for green manure, weed suppression, mulch and livestock forage. Innovation. A soybean grower has just modified his corn planter so he can no-till soybeans in 30-inch rows and will be trying out higher populations and some interseeded cover crops in those same soybeans. Innovation. I talked to three farms who have agreed to partner on a cover crop mixture demonstration project and will be hosting field days on their farms to share the results. Innovation. I have spoken with several farmers this week growing new crops like chicory, quinoa, and berseem clover.  Innovation.  I emailed with a new member of the Champlain Valley Farmer Coalition who is excited to be part of a farmer-based watershed group looking to protect Lake Champlain and thriving agriculture in Vermont. Innovation.

As you walk around your own farms, identify the many ways you are being innovative. As you drive down the road, what are your neighbor farmers doing to be innovative? If you see some fields this year that look a little different – instead of wondering if something went wrong, maybe its just another Vermont farmer trying something new.

Here’s to Innovation!

A grain grower marking out strips in a field to compare tillage practices.
A grain grower marking out strips in a field to compare tillage practices.
Winter rye with hairy vetch used for a green manure before vegetables and ear corn.
Winter rye with hairy vetch used for a green manure before vegetables and ear corn.
Chicory planted with grass, clover and alfalfa in a pasture