Monday, May 2, 2016

Weekly Events & Opportunities in Sustainable Farming & Foods!

Getting started with farm business planning and financial readiness
This program is a final addition to the 24-webinar Michigan State University Extension 2016 Beginning Farmer Webinar Series. A descriptive flyer and on-line registration and payment for any or all of the original 23 webinars is available at  This final webinar is a free offering. 
Alliance for Advanced Food Sanitation Seminar

May 2.  1:30 pm–2:45 pm. Food Innovation Center Room: 277 Food Innovation Center, Nebraska Innovation Campus, 1901 North 21st Street Lincoln. Contact,  Justin Lewis, 402-472-2766jlewis9@unl.eduDr. J. David Legan will be sharing his vision of a sanitation roadmap for the food industry during a public seminar. He is a candidate interviewing for the position of founding director of the Alliance for Advanced Food Sanitation where he could lead the initiation and development of university-industry research projects and outreach programs to the food industry to promote better and more efficient approaches to food sanitation based upon sound scientific and engineering principles.

UNL Gardens 2016 East Campus Gardens First Tuesdays Walking Tours; “Carbon Sink” Woody Orbanmentals
May 3.  12:00 pm–1:00 pm.  Carbon Sink. NW corner of 38th and East Campus Loop. Free and open to the public. Contact,  Emily Levine, 402-472-6274,elevine2@unl.eduOn the next tour, May 3, we’ll return to the woody plant area known as the Carbon Sink at the northeast corner of 38th Street and the East Campus Loop. We’ll pick up where we left off and we’ll also revisit some of the more interesting plants to see what they’ve been up to over the past month.

Recordkeeping for Organics: Tips, Tricks & Questions Answered

May 3rd. Online. This webinar from Oregon Tilth will help producers understand what records are required to apply for organic certification. The webinar will also share “sound and sensible” recordkeeping practices that producers can implement to demonstrate organic compliance to inspectors and certifiers. The webinar will conclude with a question and answer session. It begins at noon Pacific Time.

Overview of poultry related equipment

Wednesday, May 4 at 10:30 am CDT. Dr. Jacquie Jacob from the University of Kentucky will discuss the different equipment needs for backyard flocks and small scale poultry operations.

Alliance for Advanced Food Sanitation Seminar

May 5th. 1:00 pm–2:15 pm. UNL's Food Innovation Center Room: 277. Nebraska Innovation Campus, 1901 North 21st Street Lincoln. Contact,  Justin Lewis, 402-472-2766jlewis9@unl.eduDr. Angela Anandappa will be sharing about her vision of a sanitation roadmap for the food industry during a public seminar. She is a candidate interviewing for the position of founding director of the Alliance for Advanced Food Sanitation where she could lead the initiation and development of university-industry research projects and outreach programs to the food industry to promote better and more efficient approaches to food sanitation based upon sound scientific and engineering principles.

Commodity Trading Room Open House

May 5th.  2:00 pm–4:00 pm. UNL's Filley Hall Room: 105. Contact,  Kara Heideman,402-472-2757kheideman3@unl.eduThe Department of Agricultural Economics invites you to visit its new, expanded Commodity Trading Room.

“What’s eating my tree?”

May 5th. 12:00 pm–1:00 pm. UNL's Keim Hall Room: 150. Contact, Karma Larsen, 402-472-7923klarsen1@unl.eduThe great majority of insects are beneficial rather than harmful to plants. Though some may damage foliage, they also serve as pollinators for fruit production and some are predators of more damaging insects. Foliar diseases of trees can be quite devastating, however there are some that do not necessarily harm their host. Jennifer Morris, Forest Health Specialist with the Nebraska Forest Service, will help explain what to watch for and when to be concerned. Anyone wishing to listen in can take part online at: The presentations are also available afterwards at

Value-Added Producer Grant Webinar

May 6. Online. USDA Rural Business Cooperative Service and the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition are hosting a webinar on the Value-Added Producer Grant Program. Agricultural producers, producer entities, and other organizations that can assist in developing VAPG applications are encouraged to attend. The webinar begins at 2 p.m. Eastern. The access code is 9268341.

2016 All Bugs Good and Bad Webinar Series: Managing Pests of Backyard Pecans

Friday, May 6 at 1:00 pm CDT. Thousands of mature pecan trees are grown around homes, many with sparse and erratic production. Usually, there is no single reason why a pecan tree fails to produce a crop or produces poor quality nuts. Learn practical tips anout pecan pests and pecan management by  Bryan Wilkins, Research Associate IIl,  Gulf Coast Research and Extension Center.

Cover Crop Field Day

May 7th. 3 p.m. at a new research farm located at 873 182 nd Road outside Pleasant Dale, Neb. The day is all about learning, fellowship and great food. The event will conclude with a time for networking at a Graze Master burger supper hosted by Del and Brenda Ficke and Nate and Rebecca Belcher. Please RSVP for this event by calling, Kerry Hoffschneider – communications coordinator. at (402) 363-8963 or You may also call Del Ficke at (402) 
499-0329 or Nate Belcher at (402) 580-0015 with any additional questions.


Birthday First Friday

May 6. 5:00 pm–7:00 pm.  Center for Great Plains Studies, 1155 Q St. Lincoln. Contact,  Katie Nieland, 402-472-3965knieland2@unl.eduCelebrate the Center for Great Plains Studies’ 40th Anniversary with a special birthday-themed First Friday. Enjoy cake, birthday goodies, and special give-aways while viewing four amazing exhibitions: “We, the Heartland,” “From this Grass Earth,” “Denizens,” and new posters for UNP 75 Iconic Covers exhibition. The Center was established in 1976 to be an interdisciplinary research and outreach operation focused on the environment, people, and cultures of the Great Plains.

Omaha area gardens sought for milkweed/monarch research project

I am studying monarch caterpillar survivability in conservation areas compared to residential gardens. I am asking for help in locating people with gardens that could be part of my study. I would need to visit a garden once every four days throughout the summer. An ideal garden should have at least ten milkweed plants from two species. We will have small quantities of milkweed (swamp milkweed & common milkweed) that we can provide to help bring the garden’s total milkweed to the number needed. ​​My name is Emily, and I am a master’s student at UNO. Please contact me for more information. Thank you!

​New Farm Storage Facility Loan

​T​he Farm Storage Facility Loan (FSFL) Program administered by the FSA has expanded to include some new eligible commodities. The new commodities eligible for facility loans include floriculture, hops, rye, milk, cheese, butter, yogurt, meat and poultry (unprocessed), eggs, and aquaculture (excluding systems that maintain live animals through uptake and discharge of water). Commodities already eligible for the loans include corn, grain sorghum, rice, soybeans, oats, peanuts, wheat, barley, minor oilseeds harvested as whole grain, pulse crops (lentils, chickpeas and dry peas), hay, honey, renewable biomass, and fruits, nuts and vegetables for cold storage facilities.​ ​Loan applications should be filed in the administra-
tive FSA office that maintains the farm’s records.​ ​For more information about Farm Storage​ Facility Loans, visit ​ ​, or contact your local FSA office. To find your local FSA office, visit

For Sale

If you're a BCS and/or Grillo two wheel tractor owner looking to add to your implements, I have the following available for sale and/or trade for mowing equipment: 
Power Harrrower, 
Cultivator with hitch
3' mulch layer (drip tape layer not included). 

Organic Custom Grazing

I have 150 acres of grass that is certified Organic. I'd potentially be interested in custom grazing pairs/cows/yearlings. I also have an additional 250 acres of grass that can be certified. I've been custom grazing 50 pairs the last few years on non-certified ground. Please let me know if you're interested or know of someone who might be. Jon Yoachim, 402-309-4088

Facility Manager Position at Prairie Hill

PRAIRIE HILL Learning Center, a Montessori farm - school located on HWY 77 seven miles south of Lincoln, seeks a Facility Manager beginning in May. 20-30 hours per week, with daily hours beginning at 6:45am. Position involves being knowledgeable and handy with maintenance of buildings and grounds on our 12 acre farm. Good communication and organizational skills are required. Respect for and appreciation of children is crucial.  E-mail: Send a resume to Mail: PRAIRIE HILL Learning Center, 17705 S. 12 St., Roca, NE 68430, Telephone: 402-438-6668 and ask to speak to our Executive Director, Mandie Schadwinkel. 

Robinette Farms Apprenticeship

We're looking for one more addition to our farm for 2016. If you or someone you know wants to learn about small-scale vegetable production, CSA management, management-intensive grazing and pastured poultry, please get in touch! Testimonials from former Apprentices can be found here: 
Details about the Apprenticeship here:

Positions Available

Here are the positions available:  1) Farm Apprentice at New Earth Farm & Goods, which includes food, housing, and pay. 2) Internships positions with Keipos, a 12-week program working at our heart and in the city, which includes a PDC certificate. Jonathan Dodd,  Keipos, Inc. http://keipos.org,

Dryland Farming Opportunity

I have + or - 6 acres that I am transitioning to organic status. It has not had any pesticides, herbicides or fertilizers applied to it for five years. It is currently in alfalfa that has reached the end of its productivity. It does not have access to irrigation. Anyone out there want to farm it organically on a sharecrop or cash rent basis? I also have 10 acres of prairie grass (never sprayed with anything) that will need to be harvested - usually sometime between June 25 and July 10. Will do that on a sharecrop or cash basis as well. I do not have the necessary large farming equipment, but have access to some on a rental basis. Interested?  Please email me at Gene Gage, Heartland Organics

Fund a Truck, Fund Local Foods!

Nebraska Food Cooperative is asking for your help to raise capital for loan repayment and truck repairs.  Our delivery trucks put on a lot of miles to deliver fresh food across our state.  We had to replace one of our vehicles and make extensive repairs on another. As a grassroots community to help small farms and build local economies, we are asking for your contribution so that the money tied up in these expenses can be freed to go toward running the co-op and making our network stronger.  We believe in the value of the co-op, and we believe in you, our community of co-op members! Read more, and support NFC today!


Integrating Warm Season Annuals into Cool Season Perennial Grazing Systems

May 10. Online. This free, one-hour webinar is presented by the Soil Health Division of NRCS. It will focus on selecting summer annuals with the highest forage quality for grazing. It will also cover grazing management to maximize weight gains while improving soil function, e.g. nutrient and water cycles and the benefits of “stockpiling” forage for use in summer or winter. The presenter is Dave Wilson, Research Agronomist, with King's AgriSeeds Inc.

Medicinal Herb Gardening

​Tuesday. May 10th 6.00pm - 8.00pm​. Prairie Pines Training Farm, Adams St & N 112th St, Lincoln​. Participants will learn some of the unique conditions required for starting medicinal herbs from seed, proper harvesting times, different drying and preservation techniques and why you should be growing your own medicine.​ Nicole Saville co-owns and operates Spiritus Vitae Botanicals, a small medicinal herb farm outside Lincoln. She has a B.S. in Herbal Medicine from Bastyr University and has a passion for stewardship and sustainability.

Supplementing the Organic Dairy Herd with Flaxseed

May 12
Join eOrganic for a webinar focused on research that is evaluating flaxseed as a feed supplement to the organic dairy herd. In this webinar, Drs. Andre Brito and Heather Darby describe some results of a multi-state project that has been exploring how organic dairy farmers in the Northeast can enhance farm profitability by extending the grazing season and adding value to milk through feed supplementation. Dr. Darby will start the webinar by sharing results of field trials she’s conducted in northern Vermont looking at the performance of flax varieties, planting dates, and weed management. Dr. Brito will then describe his work on feeding flaxseed to organic dairy cows. The webinar is free and open to the public; it begins at 2 p.m. Eastern. Advance registration is required.

Insect, Disease, and Weed Management Workshop

May 14
Lawrence, Kansas
This full-day workshop hosted by the Douglas County K-State Research and Extension Center is part of the Growing Growers core workshop series. The core workshop series includes basic information about farming practices.

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