the irresistible fleet of bicycles

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essex farm notes: a great blog to follow

get a horse

Week 26, 2014

We are sleep deprived and red-necked, the house is a total disaster, the lawn is shaggy, and we’ve been eating cold scraps out of a nearly barren fridge. And this is exactly the way it should be when things are going well at the end of June. The weather is behaving as if custom ordered. We pulled some long days haymaking last weekend. Mike, Mark, Matt, Luke, Aubrey and Scott got the last load of bales under cover minutes before the rain started. Then it fell gently, steadily, so that the plants and grasses, which had which had just begun to wish for water, raised their leaves up in gratitude. Now the sun is out again and the forecast is clear and hot; Jon Christian is aboard the Ford, laying down more hay, and Mark is tedding it right behind him.

To read more or visit this blog, click HERE—>

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national geographic’s ‘five steps’ won’t feed the world: an iowa farmer’s view

The following essay written by George Naylor was published published by the Huffington Post on May 9, 2014 and is deserving of attention.

George NaylorPicture via National Geographic

The brief article, “A Five-Step Plan to Feed the World” offered by Professor Jonathan Foley in the latest National Geographic magazine, clearly states the stark features of a global society on the brink of overshooting the capacity of the ecosphere. I highly commend Professor Foley and his colleagues for being honest about the depth of the crisis because in the general media, and especially the farm media, one wouldn’t know that anyone should be alarmed at all. Here in Iowa where the landscape is plastered with millions of acres of genetically modified corn and soybeans along with their poisonous herbicides, insecticides, fungicides and fertilizers polluting our lakes and rivers, our institutions deny that Silent Spring has arrived, let alone that anything needs to change. In fact, politicians and educators of every stripe bow to the god of Norman Borlaug, mesmerized by the World Food Prize mantra that we must feed the world using whatever new technology the chemical giants offer to deal with new problems turning up every day. Alarmingly, looking at the title of Foley’s article, we see the same mantra! Click HERE to read more—–>

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“I farm because” a photography project

This past summer I spent two weeks volunteering on a farm in Maine. While I was there, I created a project photographing farm apprentices in the Penobscot Bay area in hopes of capturing the incredible work the young individuals have chosen to do, as well as gain a better understanding as to why they are pursuing the farm life.

warm regards,
Isabel Stearns

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those canadians!

Notes from the field…Dearest Young Agrarian,

We’ve got lots of exciting updates heading into the fall and winter season. From a newly updated website, release of our Land Linking Guide and a series of events across the province, there is much to see, do and share!

If you haven’t already please join us across the social media landscape on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Flickr. Send us your Young Agrarian stories and photos by using the hashtag #youngagrarians.

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marsh culture

engagement with a mucky ecosystem.

70.8% – a great blog with beautiful images HERE.

18 cutting-scoff-stuff

Seventy point eight is the percentage of ocean to landmass on our planet. get wet…a rambling personal collection of news, books, images, ideas, and whatever else I find interesting relating to our aqueous environment..with an emphasis on small boats, sailing, boat design and designers and boatbuilding and builders, especially home builders. And a certain curiosity about seasteading.

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corn corn corn

Corn-fieldShannon Hayes, Sap Bush Hollow Farm
22 January 2013

Dear Friends;

As some of you are aware, I trekked out to Wisconsin this past weekend to speak at a farming conference. While there, I had the opportunity to witness first-hand the impact the latest monoculture corn craze is having on farmers who are putting land stewardship and community ahead of profit. It was a tough weekend for me, and I am thankful to be back nestled away in my own hillsides. But while there, I was reminded of the great magnitude of change we are asking of our farmers: to rebuild a sustainable food system and a life serving economy. This week’s blog post, The Price of Corn, tells the story.
It is my hope that, after you read this, you might hug the next farmer you see who is choosing to grow vegetables or grassfed meat, especially when he or she could be making a small fortune tearing up his or her land for corn. Indeed, this entire new life-serving economy we are trying to build will simply not happen without the farmers who are willing to advance the interests of the land, the water and their communities. They will be our foundation.
Thank you for taking the time to read. I deeply appreciate your support as my own mind fills with doubt at the enormousness of what we are asking, and then finds solace in the beautiful responses that unexpectedly come forward.
Shannon Hayes
Sap Bush Hollow Farm, Shannon,  and Grassfed

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