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  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...
Several converging experiences over the last week got me to thinking about the role predators play in the food chain and even, it turns out, on the shape of our landscape. It began with my hen house, led to the ridge at the top of my hay field, and...
News flash out of Seattle: the minimum wage has just been raised to $15/hour, by far the highest in the country. Indeed, it’s double or more the rate in Arkansas ($6.25) and about half the states,  almost triple the rate in Georgia and...
We’ve all seen the various charts floating around the interwebz showing which mega-corporations own which food brands. The one posted below came to me via Alex Hillsberg’s blog post which I highly recommend. The gist of his analysis:...


Agriculture
Jul 14, 2014 — Some rookie farmers in northern Michigan are growing saskatoon, a shrub that looks like blueberry. They're also experimenting with it in the kitchen — in jams and pies.
Jul 1, 2014 — The University of California, Davis is the source of most commercial strawberries. Now, the university's strawberry breeders are going into business for themselves, and farmers are worried.
Jun 20, 2014 — Breweries have been providing farmers with free or discounted grain to feed their animals for centuries. But a proposed FDA rule intended to make food safer could disrupt that relationship.
Jun 9, 2014 — Water is scarce in California, and prices are all over the map. Some farmers are paying almost 100 times more than others. Should water flow to the highest bidder?
May 29, 2014 — As Oklahoma enters its fourth year of sustained drought, some farmers expect the harvest to be so bad they'll end up calling their insurance agents and declaring this year a total loss. StateImpact Oklahoma's Joe Wertz reports that some are calling this the worst drought since the '50s — or even since the Dust Bowl.
 

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.

Clinton Hosts NY Farm Day

New York farmers took the spotlight in Washington, DC yesterday with Senator Hillary Clinton's 3rd Annual New York Farm Day. In a telephone conference with reporters to preview the event, Clinton and co-organizer Jim Tresize gave a nod to North Country products.  Go to full article

Natural Selections: BT Corn and Monarch Butterflies

Recent studies verify the theory that BT corn, genetically-engineered to produce its own pesticides, is harmful to the monarch butterfly, producing a high rate of mortality in larvae that feed on milkweed near BT corn fields. Dr. Curt Stager and Martha Foley discuss this and other butterfly news.  Go to full article

Shoppers Challenge "Homegrown" Label

It's harvest time for some of the local crops. The fields are ripe with homegrown produce. Some supermarkets are advertising homegrown vegetables for sale. But some supermarkets define "homegrown" a lot differently than you might think. The Great Lakes Radio Consortium's Joyce Kryszak reports on some misleading marketing that's hurting local farmers.  Go to full article

4-H Kids Learn To Let Go

Fair season is in full swing in counties around the Midwest, and for kids in 4-H it's the culmination of months of work. Many have been raising animals to show and sell at...  Go to full article

Blight Endangers Apple Orchards

Agriculture advisors are warning some apple growers to be on the lookout for a blight that can kill the trees in their orchard. The Great Lakes Radio Consortium's Gretchen...  Go to full article

Farmers Hope Summer Ends Dry

For the North Country's dairy farmers, summer is the time to grow nutritious feed to get the herd through the winter. And from the layperson's perspective, it looks like the...  Go to full article

Savor Local Produce With a 'Slow Food' Evening

We're at the height of locally grown, fresh fruit and vegetable season. The corn is sweet, the tomatoes are plump and juicy, and a group of North Country gardeners are...  Go to full article

Buying Organic: Grocery Stores or Local Farm-raised?

It can be tough deciding whether to buy organic foods at the market. Organic produce often costs more, sometimes doesn't look as nice, and can compete with locally-produced...  Go to full article

Sounds of the County Fair

The sights, smells, and sounds of county fairs are classic ingredients of summer. The midway barker beckoning you in to a show. The whip of the wind through your hair on...  Go to full article
McHugh and Clinton visit a farm near Fulton

Clinton, McHugh Announce Rural Economic Package

After Ogdensburg, the pair headed south to a dairy farm in Oswego County. Clinton and McHugh talked about a fix for the way farmers are paid for their milk. The current...  Go to full article

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