Century Farm program honors dedicated farm families

2019-06-14T14:06:42-05:00June 14, 2019|Grower, Grower Midwest|

by Gail March Yerke
It was the New York Agricultural Society that became one of the first organizations to recognize Century Farms in our country back in 1937. Today the USDA identifies the vast majority of farms and ranches in the United States as family owned and operated. The Century Farm program honors generations of families that have dedicated their lives to farming. (more…)

A growing success: K&W Greenery Garden Center

2019-06-14T13:59:18-05:00June 14, 2019|Grower, Grower Midwest|

It’s a family affair: Brother and sister Chris Williams and Jordan Graffin at the family’s retail garden center in Janesville, WI.
Photo by Gail March Yerke

by Gail March Yerke

It’s early spring 1972 and the lumbering rural school bus gradually comes to a stop at the edge of town in Janesville, WI. When the door opens a young boy scampers toward the old farmhouse recently converted into a retail garden shop. After homework he goes out to the one small hoop house, helping his dad transplant flowers as only a 10-year-old can. (more…)

The savoir-faire of selling to Millennials

2019-06-14T13:38:13-05:00June 14, 2019|Grower, Grower East, Grower Midwest, Grower West|

by Courtney Llewellyn

The Millennial: what a debated figure in the current economic climate. They have been accused of killing everything from the diamond industry to blowing their meager disposable income on frivolities such as avocado toast. They do make money (often at more than one job), and they do spend it. But how does a business lure them in? (more…)

Working on the reuse of phosphorus

2019-06-14T10:43:33-05:00June 14, 2019|Grower|

by Enrico Villamaino

Phosphorus fertilizer is an essential element needed for agriculture. Unfortunately, it is also a considerably limited resource; there are finite amounts of phosphorus found in ore deposits located in a few locations scattered across the globe. Countless nations import phosphorus fertilizer for their agricultural producers. (more…)

Preventing destructive insects and diseases in tomatoes & blueberries

2019-06-14T10:40:57-05:00June 14, 2019|Grower|

Remember to Supply Calcium for Blueberries

Blueberries are members of the Heath family, which includes azaleas, camellias and rhododendrons. These are acid-loving plants which thrive on a low soil pH. Blueberries like a soil pH between 4.5 – 5.0. In order to lower the soil pH, elemental sulfur (97% sulfur) is added. This is best done at least one year before planting to allow the sulfur to react with the soil and lower the pH. (more…)

The Benefits of Primary Resources

2019-06-14T10:38:16-05:00June 14, 2019|Grower|

Business advocates agree there are significant benefits to establishing, nurturing and utilizing primary resources tied to your operation. You might think of them as “Plan B,” but in reality, primary resources, both people and pathways, represent an important business strategy. (more…)

Using viruses to keep plants healthy

2019-06-14T10:35:23-05:00June 14, 2019|Grower|

It seems like an oxymoron, right? A healthy virus? But that’s what researchers at the University of California-San Diego and Case Western Reserve University are looking at. They discovered a plant virus is able to deliver pesticide molecules deeper below the ground – to places normally beyond pesticide reach. (more…)

IPM via Orchard Habitat

2019-06-14T10:35:50-05:00June 14, 2019|Grower|

No matter what is growing in your orchard – apples, stone fruit, nuts or berries – protecting that crop from pests is always a concern. The use of integrated pest management (IPM) strategies has growers thinking twice about blindly reaching for orchard sprays without first considering the life cycle of the pests and disease agents they are actively targeting, as well as the tolerance threshold for a given pest. (more…)

Building a second career

2019-04-08T10:31:39-05:00April 8, 2019|Grower|

by Sally Colby

Regina Gentile spent most of her life in the field of education, first as an educator and a guidance counselor, then as an administrator. After retiring from the teaching profession, she was ready to pursue her true passion: farming.

“As a young child, my hands were always in the dirt,” said Gentile. “I love watching food as it grows, and I’ve always had a home garden. This business was a natural progression for me.” (more…)