Thank you all for coming to class yesterday and going home in the beginnings of light snow which quickly changed later to heavy. I hope everyone got home safe and sound, and for those of you who stayed home you made the right choice.
Winter Greens Field Trip – February 20 Class
Meet at the farm at 9:00 AM, please commute with fellow MGs who live nearby if you can.
Location: Winter Cherry Farm – 205 River Road, Biddeford Maine. The farm is down a dirt drive, park down by the barn or along the driveway if there is room. Dress for the Outdoors.
Brent Peters of Winter Cherry Farm has been growing winter greens on his small farm for the past 5 years. He now has 7 small moveable greenhouse which he uses to grow winter greens and then rotates them to a spring and then summer location for other crops. Each house moves (crop rotates) 3 times a year. These are low tech inexpensive designs that are sure to spark your interest. Cooperative Extension has a bender for bending electrical conduit pipe which can be used to make your own design.
Winter Greens Moveable Greenhouse Is a design we made for our workshop at Laudholm Farm last Fall. Take a look and remember you can borrow our bender and some advice if you decide to build one.
A Garden For All Seasons - Article written by Maine’s Eliot Coleman in 2000, covers all the basics for planting, maintaining and feasting on winter greens
Good job yesterday getting through the two weeks of soils classes and readings. Now it’s on to Botany and Herbs Next Week!
Homework for Next Week
Web Soil Survey
Use this website: Web Soil Survey
This is a bit of a challenge task as it web-based, please have fun with it and do the best you can!
Choose any area you wish to learn about – your home and garden, a nearby farm or any other land.
Once you generate a report that show’s the soil types for the area you are researching, please view this table where you can get more information on each soil classification:
You may wish to save this as a PDF file. Then you could save it to your computer and share the report via e-mail or any way you choose.
Have fun with it, and if you get stuck, feel free to give me or Sue a call and we can work on it with you.
Readings for this week
Visit this Penn State Herb link and this Herb Society Beginners Herb Guide (PDF) you don’t have to read about every herb, but browse these two links and familiarize yourself with herbs that interest you.
In your manual’s Botany Chapter please review the sections on:
How Plants Grow: This section is extensive, you are not expected to read it all this week. Please review each section quickly to familiarize yourself with the resources there, then go back and read the sections that interest you most.
Also familiarize yourself with this UConn Plant Data Base – try searching by both Latin and Common names. Look up some of your favorite ornamental trees, shrubs or vines.
Please review this fact sheet: How Plants are Named
See you Thursday morning for our class on Botany Part I and Growing Herbs in Maine!
I thought we had a great class yesterday and that we are off to a good start on soils. Next week (February 6) we will continue with our soils learning and focus on Nutrients for Plant Growth, Cover Cropping, Soil Testing and the Web Soil Survey to learn about soils close to you. We will also spend the last section of our class on Home Composting.
Homework – Readings For This Week
Chapter 2, Organic Matter: What It Is And Why It Is So Important (Pages 9-21) in Building Soils for better Crops
New readings for this week
Welcome Master Gardener Class of 2014!
It was a pleasure to meet you all in our first class yesterday and to hear from you about your knowledge and passion for programs and sharing information.
I am sorry that we ran a bit short on time with the seed starting presentation. I plan to begin next weeks class with questions and to go over the seed starting chart and how to make newspaper pots before we start our soils part I class and worm composting.
Here is a YouTube Video on building the stand I did a few years back:
Homework and Manual
Each week I will post the readings for the upcoming class. Much of this will come from the online manual. Here is a link to it, you may wish to bookmark this page:
Please read Chapter 1 Healthy Soils and Chapter 2, Organic Matter: What It Is And Why It Is So Important in Building Soils for better Crops
Familiarize yourself with the Soils Chapter of your Online Manual and in particular review:
Worm Compost Readings
A couple of worm composting fact sheets to review in advance of our next class:
That’s enough for week 1, see you Thursday!
Money Sense is the University of Maine Cooperative Extension’s free newsletter is for individuals and families who are interested in knowing ways to save more and spend less. Eash issue contains information, tips, tools and suggestions on how to reduce your debt and make better spending choices.
The newsletter is mailed to you electronically every two months. If you do not have email, we can mail it to you. You can check out past issues at http://umaine.edu/savemoney/money-sense.
If you would like to be added to the mailing list, contact us at 207-582-3739 or 800-287-0274 or email email@example.com. If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact Jane Conroy at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We invite you to check out other money-saving resources at our Save Money, Spend Less website at http://umaine.edu/savemoney. Here you’ll find advice on money management topics from holiday shopping tips, to saving money on food, planning a home budget, and more.
Late Blight Resources: University of Maine Cooperative Extension Late Blight Resources
Late Blight in Maine
Late blight has just been reported in potato plantings in coastal Maine (Woolwich) and an outbreak was reported in Penobscot County says Dr. Jim Dill, UMaine Extension Pest Management Specialist. Conditions for the development of late blight have been very good in Maine and growers should be on the alert to catch any early symptoms on their plants and be ready to apply appropriate control measures. Typical symptoms will be water-soaked lesions on the leaves with fine, white cottony mycelium on the undersides. Infections on the stems appear as dark, almost black lesions. For photos of the symptoms, go to UMaine Extension IPM Photo Gallery - Late Blight
Late blight spores can travel over 40 miles under the right conditions (wet and warm) and the spread can be very fast. We are encouraging all growers to carefully and regularly inspect their plants for this disease. Please report any suspicious symptoms to the UMaine Extension Pest Management Office at 207-581-3883 or 1-800-287-0279 (in Maine) or e-mail PMO@umext.maine.edu.
Samples can be sent to:
Pest Management Office
491 College Avenue
Orono, ME 04473-0279
Samples should be sent in a sealed plastic bag with a dry paper towel to keep them fresh. For the latest control options available for late blight on tomatoes, check out the University of New Hampshire Extension’s fungicide table (PDF).
What will agriculture look like in Maine by 2025? Are Maine farmers optimistic about the future? What changes are happening on farms to adjust to changing weather and energy prices?
University of Maine Cooperative Extension researchers, led by Extension’s John Jemison, asked 199 Maine farmers these questions and many more during 15 focus group sessions held during 2011. The answers are enlightening and indicate what’s currently working well, what needs to change, and what the future looks like for farming in Maine. See a two-page summary of the findings: