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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.
Photo: chobani.com
Photo: chobani.com

New York top yogurt producer in US for second year

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) Call it the yogurt empire state.

For the second year in a row, New York has been named the top yogurt producer in the United States.  Go to full article

Ontario event to honor migrant workers

An event is being planned to help and honor thousands of migrant workers who travel to Niagara each year for work. The workers from Mexico, Jamaica, Central America and the Caribbean come to Niagara each year to grow fruits and vegetables.

Hundreds of migrant workers will be at the Niagara-on-the-Lake Community Centre on June 1st to celebrate the beginning of a new growing season.  Go to full article
Papayas in Hawaii have been genetically engineered to resist the ringspot virus. Photo: <a href="http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/4/47/Papaya_sunset.jpg">USDA</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Big agribusiness fights GMO labeling in New York

Advocates of labeling genetically modified crops (GMOs, or genetically modified organisms) recently made some progress in New York State. Last week, a labeling bill moved forward in the State Assembly committee system. Now, the bill's opponents in the agriculture industry are fighting back. This after Vermont passed the first GMO labeling law in the nation last week.

Food companies say modifying a crop's DNA is not dangerous. And the majority of scientific research supports that claim, according to a recent report from the Associated Press. But many people say consumers should still have a right to know whether the foods they buy contain GMOs.  Go to full article
Farmland in the Hudson Valley. Photo: <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/jms2/3599304300/">June Marie</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

NY makes $20.5M available to keep farmland

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) New York officials say they are making $20.5 million available to help maintain farmland and prevent its conversion to non-agricultural uses.
...  Go to full article
Photo: <a href="http://wilpf.org/files/image_3.jpg">WILPF</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

New York is on the path to labeling GMOs, too

Today, Vermont will become the first state to enact a GMO labeling law. Many people want New York to follow suit. Foods with GMOs, or genetically modified organisms, are...  Go to full article
Sow with piglets at the New York State Fair last year. Photo: <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/dougtone/9605205114/">Doug Kerr</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

New York fair suspending piglets and sows exhibit

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (AP) The state department of agriculture and markets has decided to suspend the sows and piglets exhibit and competition at the New York State Fair this...  Go to full article
Corn field. Photo: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/planmygreen/2675568751/sizes/z/in/photolist-55qZnH-bfofwD-dGNrkA-beYJnK-63LZ2U-8HDeJF-6GbW5-9YJvnJ-czRDem-6We4UA-eewiJV-4C3kF5-2646Jd-eewjQc-fMjAUL-beYM1n-4PyEtt-gUjULQ-2pSP5G-8zDeLm-cyUjpw-fsYiiv-5csq5g-2NwTUm-aGiKEt-4KyjvA-aixLKC-dpXLfz-bFt1zX-2u9i3q-3nJSPG-deoJxq-4VRPDZ-4CVnHk-JbVrz-8KkFPs-axMX7G-5aBFhp-5yRjVU-cSTXQN-4VgYUW-2Zg6mX-8ivjiQ-dnzy3J-d36eKN-4wJrq5-4Ehkv-512oKM/">Rastoney</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

What you need to know about Vermont's GMO bill

Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin plans to sign the nation's first GMO labeling bill into law this week. Sarah Harris spoke with Laurie Beyranevand, associate director of the Center...  Go to full article
Dairy cows in Canton, NY. Photo: Nora Flaherty

A farmworker speaks out on dairy farm dangers

A Syracuse-area farm worker is touring regional churches and community centers to bring attention to workplace dangers on dairy farms.

José Cañas is originally...  Go to full article
Juneberries. Photo: <a href=" https://www.flickr.com/photos/43200296@N08/12506955824/">Jim Ochterski</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Juneberries gain popularity with Northeast farmers

WILLSBORO, N.Y. (AP) A native North American fruit that looks like a blueberry but is more closely related to apples is gaining popularity as an alternative crop for...  Go to full article
Image: Cornell Cooperative Extension of Jefferson County

Speed dating to bring fresh food to the table

You may have heard of "speed dating." It's a no-nonsense, fast, and fun way to meet a bunch of people and maybe find that certain someone. People sit across from one another,...  Go to full article

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