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Each week it gets better and better. Lilies and daisies, beans and peppers. There is so much variety in the gardens of our region. Your growing techniques range from precise, vigorous vegetable gardens to slightly wild and whimsical flower beds,...
  From my garden perch in DeKalb, and from looking through all of the photos you’ve been sending in, it appears that we’re having a banner growing year. Good mix of rain and sunshine. Of course, there are bugs and deer to challenge...
So why didn’t the zucchini cross the road? He didn’t want to become squash! Yes, indeed it’s time for squash jokes. Calabacin, cousa, courgette, cymling, cuccuzza, curcubita pepo, scallop, vegetable marrow, butterbar, crookneck,...
  Seems to me the weather has been cooperating nicely with gardening goals: a fairly balanced mix of sun and rain. And, it shows in your photographs of gardens from across the region. The collection today takes us from a school garden in Long...
This corn was nicely mounded and will recover from the wind. Last summer, a severe storm drove through my garden when the corn was about 10 days out from picking. We lost some but salvaged 75% by building a stick and rope lattice system down each...


Agriculture
Aug 20, 2014 — The EPA wants to "clarify" the scope of its oversight of water under the Clean Water Act. Big farm groups like the American Farm Bureau Federation call this a power grab that would place every ditch and mud puddle under federal regulation, forcing farmers to get permits for small trenches around the farm.
Aug 20, 2014 — The bread that Jules and Helen Rabin have made in their fieldstone oven for four decades has a cult following in central Vermont. But this may be the last summer they sell it at the farmers market.
Aug 13, 2014 — Projections suggest that climate change will hurt agriculture in most parts of the world. But some areas of the U.S. could actually see a benefit as corn production moves farther north.
Aug 12, 2014 — Studies warn that climate change will threaten corn production in coming decades. Meanwhile, farmers are experimenting with new planting methods in hopes of slowing soil erosion from torrential rains.
Aug 8, 2014 — Ohio farmers say they are not the only ones to blame for Toledo's polluted drinking water. They say they are using only as much fertilizer as they need to grow their crops.
 

Special Reports

Audio Series
Farm to Farm, Family to Family: David Sommerstein travels with NC dairy farmers to a Mexican village many of their migrant workers call home.
Audio Series
A Year on the Farm
In this monthly feature series, David Sommerstein follows life in the barn, on the fields, and in the farmhouse through the changing seasons on the Andrews dairy farm near Gouverneur NY. This series won the 2006 "Cap" Creal Journalism Award from the New York Agricultural Society.
Audio Series
Hispanic Workers on North Country Farms
Five years ago, just a handful of farmers in the North Country employed Hispanic workers. Now many use workers from Latin America. The transition can be a bumpy one, for farmers and for the people they hire. David Sommerstein tells their stories in this ongoing series.
Beekeeper
Audio Slideshow:
Beekeepers facing new challenges
Lucy Martin visits with Ontario beekeeper Terry McEvoy and talks about colony collapse disorder and other apiary ailments that raise concerns about the food supply.
Audio Slideshow
Sights & Sounds of the Dairy Princess Parade
We go to the sidelines of one of the big events on the annual dairy calendar, the St. Lawrence County Dairy Princess Parade in Canton. Fire engines, tractors, and floats rolled down Main Street on Saturday.
Audio Series
Diversifying North Country Farms
NCPR reporter David Sommestein's series on diversifying North Country farming won the 2003 “Cap” Creal Journalism Award from the New York State Agricultural Society.
Photo Audio Essay
Dairy Farming in the North Country
The time seemed right to look at the challenges facing dairy in the North Country. In part 1 we look at the price of milk, as seen through the eyes of one mid-size dairy farmer. In part 2 we visit a cheese manufacturer proposing drastic changes in the way North Country farmers do business. David Sommerstein reports.
Audio Slideshow
A Barn-Raising in Upper Jay (Real 6:23)
These days, most new barns are built quickly with steel frames and sheet-metal siding. But some landowners are taking a little more time, using methods and materials passed down over hundreds of years.
Photo Audio Essay
Saving New York's Historic Barns
Some of New York's oldest barns are getting facelifts. Todd Moe visited a Canton family's 1820 English threshing barn slated for restoration.

A Local Guide to Pasture-Raised Meat

Meat lovers are increasingly looking to pasture-raised beef, lamb, and chicken as a healthier and more sustainable alternative to commercial feed lot meats. The Adirondack North Country Association recently published a directory of local farms that raise cows, sheep, and poultry on pasture, along with a list of local butchers who can prepare the meat for your freezer. David Sommerstein talks with ANCA's grazing technician Martha Pickard, who compiled the directory.

You can get a copy of the directory, or be included if you're a farmer, by calling 518-891-6200.  Go to full article

Alpaca Farming Becoming Next Livestock Trend

There's an up-and-coming livestock trend in the region. Alpacas are common in the high plains of Peru, Chile and Bolivia, where people have used their fleece for clothes and their dung as fuel for centuries. They haven't even been in the U.S. 20 years, but their low environmental impact, cold weather tolerance and high-priced fleece make them an increasingly popular choice for farmers. The Great Lakes Radio Consortium's Skye Rohde reports.  Go to full article

Dioxin High Risk in Agricultural Areas

A new report out this month says the government needs to do more to reduce the presence of the chemical dioxin in the food supply, especially in agricultural areas like the North Country. David Sommerstein reports.  Go to full article

A Barn-raising in Upper Jay

In the North Country, barns are as much a part of the landscape as mountains and rivers. These days, most new barns are built quickly with steel frames and sheet-metal...  Go to full article

Free Market Dairying

This week the National Milk Producers Federation and dozens of dairy farmer cooperatives nationwide began a program to control milk production in the United States and push...  Go to full article

Dairy Coops Leverage Market Power

Dairy farmers are taking an historic step toward controlling the supply of milk in the United States. Farmers accounting for 70 percent of the milk made nationally have...  Go to full article

School Connects Kids to Healthy Eating

American kids are overweight. Nutritionists say one major reason is that kids are eating too much junk food, and not enough fresh produce. A government pilot program is...  Go to full article
Are soybeans a promising future for farmers like Bill Brewer?

Can Soybeans Take Root on North Country Farms?

Facing rock-bottom milk prices and mounting debt, dairy farmers are looking for other ways to stay in business. An extra field of hay or corn could help pay the bills in...  Go to full article

Call-in Special: The Crisis in North Country Dairy Farming

NCPR news has focused special coverage this week on the crisis in the dairy industry. Martha Foley was joined by NY Assemblyman Darrel Aubertine from Cape Vincent, a farmer...  Go to full article
Dave Fishel catches up with his former cows.

Diversifying the Dairy Industry

The North Country dairy industry is facing some of its bleakest times in memory this summer. Farmers are going deeper into debt and working jobs off the farm. The main...  Go to full article

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