the irresistible fleet of bicycles


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farmlink mixer march 7th in dover-foxcroft, maine

Are you thinking about whether there are farmers out there that could use some of your available farmland? Or are you curious about what it might be like to farm in Piscataquis County (where the farmland is spectacular and the people are nice)? Then our Maine FarmLink Speed-Linking event is for you! Shake off that cabin fever and come on down for some good, old-fashioned farmer meetin’ and greetin’!

When:    Saturday, March 7th at 3:30p.m. (Snow Date: March 14th at 3:30pm)

Registration will start at 3:15 p.m.

Where:   Dover-Foxcroft Congregational Church, 824 West Main St., Dover-Foxcroft, ME

What:     A chance for farmland seekers and owners to interact in a fun, facilitated way

Why:      Because we want help to connect YOU!

Get more info and register HERE!


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300 seed libraries regulated out of existence?

People have been saving and sharing seeds for over 10,000 years. Seed libraries have sprung up around the country to support this practice, which not only brings communities together but also helps protect the diversity of our seeds and strengthens our food system. Now they’re in danger of being shut down.

Pennsylvania, Maryland, Minnesota and Nebraska seed libraries have received letters from their state departments of agriculture saying they are out of compliance with state seed laws that were written to regulate seed companies. We need your help to convince state departments of agriculture across the country to remove the legal barriers to seed sharing through seed libraries. Please add your name to the list and share widely!

SEEDS OF TIME (my new documentary which follows agriculture pioneer Cary Fowler on his race to protect and preserve seed diversity around the world) is partnering with the Sustainable Economies Law Center (SELC) and Seed Matters on this important campaign to protect our right to save and share local seeds. They have already gathered over 7K signatures; we hope to help them reach far beyond their goal of 10K signatures.

Go HERE to learn more about the film and sign the petition!

You can also reach out to Sandy McLoed if you would like to screen SEEDS OF TIME in your community or institution!


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the living new deal

In the depths of the Great Depression, President Franklin D. Roosevelt promised the American people a “New Deal.” Over the decade 1933-43, a constellation of federally sponsored programs put millions of jobless Americans back to work and helped to revive a moribund economy. The result was a rich landscape of public works across the nation, often of outstanding beauty, utility and craftsmanship.

No city, town, or rural area was untouched by the New Deal.  Hundreds of thousands of roads, schools, theaters, libraries, hospitals, post offices, courthouses, airports, parks, forests, gardens, and artworks—created in only one decade by our parents and grandparents—are still in use today.  The long-term payoff from this public investment helped propel American economic growth after the world war and is still working for the American people today.

Because these public works were rarely marked, the New Deal’s ongoing contribution to American life goes largely unseen. Given the scale and impact of the Roosevelt years across America, it seems inconceivable that no national register exists of what the New Deal built.  The Living New Deal is making visible that enduring legacy. Click HERE to read more!


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longest acres: a lovely blog

Nick Zigelbaum and Kate MacLean together with their young son run at small diversified Animal Welfare Approved farm on 120 acres in Chelsea, Vermont. Nick raises Milking Devon cows and Kate raises Icelandic sheep and Ossabaw pigs. The farm carries with it many chickens, dogs, a few goats, and a Jersey milking cow too.

February is my least favorite month. Fortunate then, for its 28 days. 30, or worse 31 and I would have left Vermont after that first winter. It snows every day in February. A law passed by the state legislature in 1892 requires it so. Coupled with a bone chilling cold and an utter lack of sun we spend hours looking at photos of summer wondering at the possibility.

Snow at this point in our winter has lost all novelty. Oh, its snowing says the mistress of the house as she descends in her pajamas that were yesterday’s clothes. Not, Oh! the exclamation when one has found a forgotten stash of Christmas chocolate. Rather, Oh, the resignation when your mate suggests cuddling up to The Walking Dead instead of The Good Wife.

Some afternoons, after shepherding my son from house to car to co-op to car to house the guilt of his winter imprisonment overcomes. There is a break in the snow.  I stuff his chunky appendages into tubes of wool and tunnels of down. I wedge the hand-me-down-woolen blob that was once my son into his sled and pile ratty blankets reserved for this purpose all around him. He is sufficiently shielded from Winter with only the triangle of his eyes and nose visible. The absence of any screaming tells me I can proceed. I tie the sled off to my belt and mush forth. Click HERE to read more!


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obama vetoes keystone xl pipeline bill

Whew.

Meanwhile, the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index has ranked Kentucky and West Virginia as having the lowest health and well being than any other state in the US for the sixth year in a row. Is it coincidental that the states with the most mountaintop removal have the worst health and the worst outlook? This study, like all the rest involving human health, falls on deaf ears with politicians and the agencies that are supposed to be protecting us.  What can you do to help us make them listen? Put your foot down!


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women dairy farmers: three short films

The National Young Farmers Coalition featured three women who had started dairy farms in 2013. Later, they were shipped goodie bags of film equipment. These videos are the result of that.

Chaseholm Farm

Read Sarah’s blog posts HERE

Golden Yoke Farm

Read Laura’s blog posts HERE

Clover Mead Farm (a neighbor of the Greenhorns!!)

Read Ashlee’s blog posts HERE


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help mira start her family farm

VISIT FUNDRAISING PAGE

As many of you know, farming is my passion. I have farmed for over a decade. I have been “growing” my kids more the past few years, but have always kept my hands in the soil one way or another, staying connected to farming.
Gerard and I have been looking for the right opportunity for a long time now, where he can pursue his interests, I can pursue mine, and we can live and raise our kids on the farm. We have finally found a home to lease with land attached, that suits all of our needs. The farm will be in Horsham, Montgomery County, PA. This is perfect for us, because we can remain close to family, friends, Gerard’s work, and suburban/urban markets.
We want to spend more time outdoors. Find balance. Grow our own food. Sell organic, nutritious foods to our neighbors. Keep bees for pollination and for honey. Raise chickens for eggs. Expose our children to the miracles of nature.
However, a farm start-up is no small feat. Some of the major costs are seeds/transplants, a walk-in cooler, a tractor/implements, tools, irrigation supplies, deer fencing, soil amendments, and so on. My goal is to raise $25,000 to help cover some of these costs. I am confident in my farming and business skills, but I do need your help to get started! We chose March 15th as our deadline because that is when we move to the new place and also when I need to get to work in the fields!

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