Archive for May, 2010

in the news: Coastal Clovers 4-H club’s garden will feed hungry

Monday, May 31st, 2010

Wow wow wow! This is such an inspiring story! What an amazing collaboration of passionate kids, the Maine Master Gardeners, and Zach’s Farm! From 

“Carly Osgood, 12, plants broccoli Sunday at Zach’s Farm participating in the annual Coastal Clovers 4H Club’s garden. This is the third year for the garden project which has produced 7000 pounds of fresh fruits and vegetables for local food pantries. Amy Root-Donle photo”

YORK, Maine — Dylan Munn and Zoe Bardwell, ages 12 and 10, said their favorite part about planting vegetables and fruits Sunday afternoon was enjoying the sun and helping people in need.

Bardwell and Munn are two of 15 children who are active participants in the Coastal Clovers 4-H Club — a club that has donated blankets to the homeless, sent cookies to soldiers in Iraq, and is now planting an array of fresh produce at Zach’s Farm on Colby Turner Road to supply the Good Shepherd Food-Bank, York County Food Bank and South Berwick Community Food Pantry. The club’s goal is to help eliminate hunger in York and its surrounding areas. The club has been planting for the community for three years.

Russell Osgood, leader of the Coastal Clovers, thinks it will be pretty hard to surpass last year’s harvest of 3,996 pounds, but the club is going to try. Osgood said that the kids’ goal is to produce approximately 2,000 pounds of winter squash.

“Ultimately we want to provide the best quality produce for people who need it,” Osgood said, stressing that quantity isn’t the club’s only aim this year.

Last year the club regretfully lost some tomatoes to blight, according to York County master gardener Pam Carr. Carr said they hope to avoid those sorts of setbacks this year.

Carr, alongside fellow master gardener Maureen Brydon, has played an integral role in educating members of the Coastal Clovers about planting and harvesting fresh produce.

“In the winter, the kids were taught about the different types of food they could plant,” said Osgood. “From there, the kids made decisions about what they wanted to plant and how much.”

The kids chose to plant celery, cucumbers, summer squash, peppers, a row of 400 sweet potatoes and countless other fruits and vegetables. Yet, for the Coastal Clovers kids, this is only beginning of a long journey — a five-month journey to be exact.

Towards the end of June, the Coastal Clovers kids will come to Zach’s Farm each Wednesday to maintain and harvest their crops to ensure their quality.

“There will be a lot of weeding and watering of the plants,” said Osgood.

The whole process will finally end in October when all the produce will be distributed to food banks. Since it began three years ago, the club has produced over 7,000 pounds of food. This year will make for a good addition to that number. website

Zach’s Farm

Maine Master Gardeners

Coastal Clovers 4-H on facebook

Seacoast area food pantries that would love donations of fresh foods!

Kids classes from Nature’s Wonders: Wonderful Worms!

Sunday, May 30th, 2010

Learn how to make a worm farm and discover why worms are so important in the garden.  Listen to worms, look for worm castings, and dig for worms in the garden.  How many can you find?
Thursday, June 3 at 10:00  or Friday, June 4 at 10:00 Space is limited so call 436-6756 or email to register.
$25 includes plants to take home for your garden.

For more information, email Patricia Ritter at

5 Keys in Raising Backyard Poultry, June 1 in Haverhill

Sunday, May 30th, 2010

The Haverhill Farmers’ Market is hosting a free lecture entitled, “5 Keys in Raising Backyard Poultry” on Tuesday, June 1 at 7pm. Eva Valentine of Speakeasy Farm will be sharing her experience in raising chickens. The talk is at 7 p.m. in the Johnson Auditorium at the Haverhill Public Library, 99 Main Street, Haverhill.

Free and open to the public –  feel free to forward!

Beach Plum Farm Community Garden has plots available

Friday, May 28th, 2010


Great Works Regional Land Trust sends out word that they have 2 community garden plots available this season at Beach Plum Farm. Located on Route 1 in Ogunquit, this wonderful site is also home to GWRLT’s office. The plots are approximately 20′ x 20′ and have been tilled; water is provided. The fee is $35 for members and $45 for non-members. And yes, there are beach plums growing there! For more information, please contact GWRLT at


If you’re looking for something a little closer to home, Seacoast Community Garden Network lists more than 30 other community gardens in the Seacoast area.

Basics of Rainwater Catchment, June 25

Wednesday, May 26th, 2010

Merrimack County UNH Cooperative Extension has a very noteworthy workshop coming up. Basics of Rainwater Catchment, will be held on Friday, June 25, 2010, from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the UNH Cooperative Extension Merrimack County Office, 315 Daniel Webster Highway, Boscawen.

Dot Perkins, UNH Cooperative Extension Merrimack County, will present an overview about catching rainwater. The why, uses, safety, sources of contamination, components to create a safe system, first flush diverters, overflow, and estimating water needs and goals will be discussed. Whether your interest is in catchment for garden use or for livestock, this presentation will help you make sound decisions.

The class is free and open to the public. For more information or to register call Mary West at 603.796.2151.You can also visit the UNH Cooperative Extension calendar to see all upcoming events at

Pollan-ating the Food Movement

Wednesday, May 26th, 2010

Michael Pollan has a new article available online at The New York Review of Books. Given the context and the list of 5 books it opens with, “The Food Movement, Rising” appears to be a book review of recent and some not-so-recent books about the movement’s different facets. Don’t let that fool you. Read on to find a lucid summation of the varying factions that make up the food movement as it exists today, and a heartening description of the tipping point we may be finding ourselves at.

New Hampshire Farm Museum Upcoming Events

Wednesday, May 26th, 2010

The New Hampshire Farm Museum in Milton has some great events coming up.

On May Saturday, May 29, it’s Spring Farm Day. Activities for the day include sheep shearing, garden activities, farm animal tours, spinning and weaving demonstrations, and dancing around the Maypole. You will also get to meet the piglets from the Merrimack County 4-H swine club.

Saturday, June 19 is New Hampshire Dairy Day. This event will be from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and participants will get to meet a cow and a dairy goat, churn cream to make butter, learn to make a fresh soft cheese in the Farm Kitchen, take a farmhouse tour, and try the Dairy Day barn hunt.  You will also be able to hop on a tractor hayride. AND, if you’re there between 12:00 and 3:00 there will be free New Hampshire ice cream!

To learn more about the New Hampshire Farm Museum, to see more of their upcoming events, and to get directions visit their website

check your volunteer potato plants! Late blight confirmed in LA, MD, and PA

Tuesday, May 25th, 2010

From Becky Sideman, UNH Extension Specialist:

Please see the following, reprinted from UMass Veg Notes:

Late Blight (Phytophthora infestans) Confirmed in LA, MD, and Northwestern PA

Isolated outbreaks of late blight have been confirmed in Louisiana, Maryland, and Northwestern Pennsylvania.  The original source of inoculum has not yet been identified.  Given the season last year, chances are good that P. infestans inoculum may have overwintered in infected potato tubers.  The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture has been screening tomato transplants destined for the retail and wholesale markets and so far those samples have been negative. Several other suspect samples have been submitted to their Plant Disease Clinic and those have also been negative.  We have had no confirmed cases of late blight in MA this year.  The largely dry weather pattern over much of the state is not conducive to the spread of the organism that causes this disease, but it is critical to scout not only this year’s tomato and potato crops but also last year’s potato fields where infected tubers may have survived the winter and are sprouting infected volunteer plants.  Early identification and eradication of inoculum sources will help to reduce the likelihood of an outbreak later in the season if the weather favors disease development (rainy, cool, cloudy) for an extended period of time.

If you think you may have late blight in your crops or on volunteer potato plants in old fields, please contact your county UNH Cooperative Extension office or the UNH Plant Diagnostic Lab at (603) 862-3841.

Becky Sideman
Assoc. Ext.Professor, Sustainable Horticulture
G48 Spaulding Hall, Durham NH 03824
FAX 603-862-2717
PH 603-862-3203
Durham NH 03824
(P) 603-862-3203 (F) 603-862-2717

Composting How-To Workshop at Dover Cassily Community Garden, June 5

Tuesday, May 25th, 2010

Learn How to Compost at the Dover Cassily Community Garden, June 5 at 3pm

Thinking about making use of your food scraps at home or business? Come learn about back yard composting–why it’s important, how it benefits the environment and your wallet, how to do it, and how to use the finished product.

This workshop will be held on Saturday, June 5 at 3:00pm at the Dover Cassily Community Garden. Eva Christensen, owner of locally produced Earthtenders organic compost, will lead the workshop. Eva Christensen is the 2008 winner of the national H. Clark Gregory Award for grassroots efforts, and serves as a consultant for soil and agriculture projects with USAID, USDA, USEPA and the US Composting Council. Eva has kindly donated several yards of compost to the DCCG each of the last two years.

Registration is not required. Please contact EriC Kelsey for more information (603 438 4992). Donations to assist the Dover Cassily Community Garden’s efforts toward building stronger communities are welcome!

To get to the garden: From the 4-way stop of Chestnut St. and Sixth Street (north of the train station), go west on Sixth St. about 1/2 mile. Turn left on Hillside Dr. Down the hill you’ll see a dirt parking lot on the right with our green shed in the back. You can park anywhere in the lot. Signs direct you down a trail through the woods to a large 3-acre field where the garden resides. It’s a beautiful piece of land surrounded by forest with trails along the Cocheco River.

Remick Museum and Farm Seeking a 2010 Part-time Summer Educator

Monday, May 24th, 2010

The Remick Museum and Farm  is seeking a 2010 part-time summer educator. The ideal candidate is a responsible adult who enjoys working with the public, giving tours of the farm and animals, helping guide hands-on activities & garden maintenance.  The position requires physical ability and stamina, working 3 days a week and every other weekend.

For a job application click here.

For more information please call 603.323.7591 or toll free 800.686.6117. Fax: 603.323.8382. Or visit their website: