There’s a fairly new magazine done by my friends at Hobby Farms Magazine called Urban Farm. I’ll be excited to see what it looks like.
Another magazine of note is Grit; a magazine emphasizing the importance of community and a rural lifestyle tradition. Their website has lots of useful information in it.
Organizations & Other Things
Farmplate is a website to connect consumers with local food; farmer’s, artisans, farm-to-fork restaurants, and markets.
Outstanding in the Field is really cool. “A roving culinary adventure”, or a restaurant without walls. Since 1999 we have set the long table at farms or gardens, on mountain tops or in sea caves, on islands or at ranches. Occasionally the table is set indoors: a beautiful refurbished barn, a cool greenhouse or a stately museum. Wherever the location, the consistent theme of each dinner is to honor the people whose good work brings nourishment to the table. Ingredients for the meal are almost all local (sometimes sourced within inches of your seat at the table!) and generally prepared by a celebrated chef of the region. After a tour of the site, we all settle in: farmers, producers, culinary artisans, and diners sharing the long table. The crew travels the country in a beautiful but cantankerous red and white bus.
Dinners at the Farm is a Connecticut organization that hosts farm-to-fork dinners at local Connecticut farms.
The Greenhorn’s is a grassroots non-profit organization made up of young farmers and collaborators with a mission to recuit, promote and support the new generation of young farmers. There is tons of information on their website, and they have a new site, Farm Hack, which is a place for practical sharing of farmer innovations and information.
For someone looking to start a farm, Land For Good is an amazing resource. They offer courses and counseling on buying vs. leasing land, help you with acquisition, planning, coaching & support as well as connecting with landowners and helping to negotiate lease or transfer documents. They led a course that I took at the Young Farmer’s Conference. Specifically of interest is to me is the Women and Farm Transfer Professional training and workshops for women in four New England states, focusing on farm transfer. Funded by USDA.
The New England Small Farm Institute (NESFI) is a land-based, non-profit organization founded in 1978 by a local citizens’ action group — Women in Agriculture, Food Policy and Land Use Reform—to encourage more sustainable regional agriculture. Their mission is to promote small farm development by providing information and training for aspiring, beginning and transitioning farmers. They maintain an extensive resource collection; produce publications; develop and offer innovative, farmer-guided programs; and advocate for policies that encourage sustainable small-scale agriculture. They seek collaborative program-delivery partnerships with service providers—associates, on-farm mentors, organizations and agencies—throughout the Northeast and nationwide. They have a good library of farm literature and some great workbooks if you’re thinking of starting one. I just ordered a few of them myself. I even got a personal email when the books were shipped out.
Heritage Foods USA is the sales and marketing arm of Slow Food USA, a non-profit organization founded by Patrick Martins and dedicated to celebrating regional cuisines and products. Unless you’ve been living under a rock somewhere for the last 10 years you’ve heard of Slow Food and the Slow Food Movement that supports food, clean and fair food. You will find a wealth of information on the heritage food movement on either one of these sites.
Niman Ranch was started by Bill Niman, one of the founding father’s of the sustainable agriculture and sustainable farming. He and his wife, Nicolette, were keynote speakers at the 3rd annual Young Farmer’s Conference that I attended and their speech was riveting and inspiring. Their book, The Niman Ranch Cookbook is filled with fascinating stories of how they began and about the farmers and animals that they support.
If you want a good comprehensive guide to sourcing sustainable meat, this is the book for you. Good Meat by Deborah Krasner.
Nigerian Dwarf Goats
Black Duck Farm is where I got my two Nigerian Dwarf goats from, located in northern Massachusetts.
Misty Highland Farm is where I brought my goats to be bred for the first time. She has some lovely goats and interesting crosses.
Dancing Frog Farm is my friend Keeley who has taken care of my goats for their “Goatcation” for the past two summers. She’s got all sorts of fun animals and the friendliest chickens I’ve ever met.
American Goat Society is a general club for goat owners and breeders. They have shows that include Nigerian Dwarfs. http://www.americangoatsociety.com/
Member of the American Dairy Goat Association
Member of the American Goat Society
Backyard Chickens is an amazing source of information on chickens. From coop designs to breed information, if you are thinking of getting chickens this should be your first stop.
My Pet Chicken is where I placed my most recent order and will be placing all future orders here as well. Not only are they local, but you can order such small quantities and they have a terrific variety available. Order really early for the best selection – like January or February for your spring chicks! I actually ordered a batch of chicks that arrived in early September. That way they are full-grown and laying by the time spring comes around. You have to have the proper facilities to be able to raise them if you live in a cold-weather climate though if you’re going to be raising chicks in the fall, like good brooders and heat lamps in non-drafty environments until they are feathered out.
The American Livestock Breeds Conservancy is a nonprofit membership organization working to protect over 180 breeds of livestock and poultry from extinction. Included are asses, cattle, goats, horses, sheep, pigs, rabbits, chickens, ducks, geese and turkeys.
The American Poultry Association is an organization that promotes and protects the standard-bred poultry industry.
Top Bar Beekeeping
Mike at Paoletto Farms is the guy I bought my first Top bar and bees from. A really nice guy.
The Barefoot Beekeeper has one of the best websites on top bar hives and is also the author of one of the best books written on the subject. There’s a lot of great information here.
Manitoba Beekeeping has a great top bar hive with a viewing window. I’d like to make one of those. He lives in Canada so he’s helpful in dealing with harsh winters and tips for winterizing the hive. I used a lot of his winterizing tips when winterizing my hive this year.
The Bee Source has great directions on how to build your own modified Kenyan Top Bar Hive. That’s on my list of things to do. Soon. Really soon.