Posts Tagged ‘local food’

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Adirondack Spruce Gum Was Once A Hot Commodity

All this talk from me during the last two weeks about spruce-related subjects (Sprucelets and spruce beer) is linked to past conversations with my mom, a native of Churubusco in northern Clinton County.

It’s officially known as the Town of Clinton, but to local folks, it’s just Busco — and about as country as it gets around here. Growing up there on a farm in the 1920s and ’30s, Mom partook in things that were once the norm, like drinking raw milk and chewing spruce gum. » Continue Reading.


Monday, February 20, 2017

Whallonsburg Grange Lyceum Series Begins

During February and March, the Whallonsburg Grange Hall will host four lectures focused on the interconnection of agriculture and community development.

This series, entitled “Living and Farming on This Land,” is co-sponsored by the Essex Farm Institute, and follows the fall Lyceum series which discussed humans’ impact on the surrounding landscape throughout history. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Small Farm Marketing and Growing Shiitakes Feb 17th

Warren County Soil & Water is continuing year four of its “Farm Talks” on Friday, February 17th from 6 to 8 pm at DEC’s Warrensburg Office, 232 Golf Course Road.

The first presentation of the night will be “Growing Shiitake Mushrooms” with Casey Holzworth from Kelsey’s Quarter Acre Farm. Shiitake mushrooms are a relatively easy addition to any small farm or home garden and they can grow in inoculated hardwood logs like oaks, maples, or ironwood. Casey’s presentation will cover growing environments, usable logs, inoculation of logs, growing climates, and harvesting. Mushroom cultivation is growing in popularity due to the market response and limited space needed to cultivate. » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, December 27, 2016

January Farm Talks Planned For Warrensburg

Warren County Soil & Water is beginning year four of its “Farm Talks” on Friday, January 13th from 6 to 8 pm at DEC’s Warrensburg Office, 232 Golf Course Road.

The first presentation of the night will be “Soil Blocks: A Better Start” with Rand Fosdick, Farm Manager of Landon Hill Estate Farm. In the northeast, starting your vegetable seeds early and correctly will lead to healthier plants with a head start to transplanting in spring. The soil block methodology is growing in popularity due to the success vegetable producers are having with this pot-less technique. The general concept behind it is using a soil recipe with structure and nutrients and a tool called a “soil blocker” to form the soil mixture into blocks to directly plant your seeds into. Soil blocks reduce transplant shock and add nutrients to your garden beds. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Support For Shiitake Mushroom Growing Offered

shiitake mushroomThe Cornell Small Farms Program, with support from the USDA Specialty Crop Grant Program and New York Farm Viability Institute, is engaged in a two year project to elevate development of a new niche crop in the New York; log-grown shiitake mushrooms.

Research and development at Cornell over the past decade, along with several partnerships and research projects has enabled greater understanding of the technical and business aspects of a small farm log-grown shiitake enterprise. Woodland log-grown mushrooms are a relatively new, niche crop and are low-input, high output enterprise that can also offset land taxes. » Continue Reading.


Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Nutting Season: An Old-Time Ritual

blackwalnutwikipdThanksgiving, with food a major holiday component, calls to mind a time of year that was once the subject of great anticipation: nutting season. I’m not old enough to have experienced it first-hand, although back in the 1980s I did explore many natural edibles. Among my favorites was beechnuts, which we harvested and used in chocolate-chip cookies. Outstanding!

But in days long ago, when many folks earned a subsistence living that utilized home-grown vegetables and wild foods, nutting season was an important time. » Continue Reading.


Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Champlain Area Harvest Fest, Hamlet Hikes Sept 16-17

CATS hikeThe Adirondack Harvest Festival will be held at the Essex County Fairgrounds in Westport on Friday and Saturday, September 16th and 17th. The event, which celebrates local farms and farmers with food, drink, music, and hikes, is supported by supported by the Hub on the Hill, Adirondack Farmers Coalition, Champlain Area Trails Society, Cornell University Cooperative Extension, The Adirondack Cuisine Trail, and adirondacks, usa.

The fairgrounds will feature a farmers’ market, over forty vendors, farming demonstrations (learn how to make sausage, cheese, and more), Ben Stechschulte’s film “Small Farm Rising,” and “Eat, Meet, & Be Merry,” a get-together hosted by Essex Farm’s Mark Kimball and the Adirondack Farmers Coalition, to sample local foods and exchange stories about our area’s new farming culture.

» Continue Reading.


Friday, September 2, 2016

Last Farm 2 Fork Festival in Saranac Lake Saturday

IMG_5392According to Adirondack Green Circle and Farm 2 Fork Founder Gail Brill “All good things come to an end.” In its seventh and final year, the festival that connected people to regional farmers through local food using traditional recipes and techniques will go out with a bang. For anyone knowing Brill and her passion for local food, “over” just means reinventing.

This year’s Farm 2 Fork Festival, a collaboration between the Adirondack Green Circle and Ausable Valley Grange, is bringing local food under the Big Top. This year’s circus themed festival continues to celebrate local food and farmers with other fun activities. In addition to the tasting ticket, there will be stilt walkers, face-painters, live music with Slow Pony and even a dunk booth. » Continue Reading.


Saturday, August 27, 2016

Saranac Lake Farm 2 Fork Festival September 3rd

farm 2 fork festivalThe seventh installment of the annual Farm 2 Fork Festival will feature a new twist. For 2016, Farm 2 Fork presents the “BBQ Under the Big Top,” a celebration of local food and farmers infused with a circus atmosphere.

Farm 2 Fork is a collaboration of the Adirondack Green Circle and the AuSable Grange. The festival’s mission is to expand support of local foods and farms, and promote food awareness in the northern Adirondacks. » Continue Reading.


Monday, June 13, 2016

Edible Forest Garden Tour Planned For June 18th

A Forest Garden (courtesy Chickenshack, North Wales)Adirondack Harvest is co-sponsoring an educational workshop in Cross Island Farms’ Edible Forest Garden on Saturday, June 18 from 1 pm to 4 pm.

Over the past three seasons Dani Baker, co-owner of Cross Island Farms, has developed just under an acre of her certified organic farm as a multi-functional edible forest garden encompassing numerous permaculture principles and practices. Attendees will join her as she describes the process of planning and planting over 300 cultivars of edible fruits, nuts, berries, and other edibles, both native and uncommon; learn about factors considered in deciding where and with what to plant the seven permaculture layers she has incorporated; and identify a large variety of supportive plants integrated into the landscape. Attendees will have an opportunity to sample edible fruits, flowers, greens and herbs in season and go home with a potted plant to begin or add to their own garden. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, June 2, 2016

The Many Uses Of Stinging Nettle

Urtica dioica from Thomé, Flora von Deutschland, Österreich und der SchweizOne of my favorite plants is either highly versatile, or very confused. On the one hand, professional herbivores like rabbits and deer refuse to even touch it, but many people, myself included, will gladly eat it every day it is available.

While contacting it is painful, it has been proven to relieve certain chronic pain. It is steeped in over a thousand years of folklore, at one point imbued with the power to cleanse away sin, yet medical science recognizes it as a legitimate remedy for many disorders. Some gardeners consider it a bothersome weed, but others actually cultivate it. » Continue Reading.


Sunday, May 22, 2016

First Blooms: Juneberries

june berryAnother regional attraction has just opened, and for the next few weeks you can see the show at innumerable open-air venues across the Northeast. The performance is free, although only matinees are available.

The new event is the blossoming of a widespread, though strangely little-known, early-flowering plant. It is either a small tree or a shrub, depending on who you ask, which makes me wonder if it’s hiding something. In fact, this thing has more aliases than one of America’s Most Wanted. Variously known as serviceberry, shadbush, shadwood, shadblow, Saskatoon, juneberry and wild-plum, it is a small-to-medium size tree that also answers to amelanchier canadensis, its botanical name. Of those options, I prefer juneberry even though its fruit may ripen in early July in northern New York State. » Continue Reading.


Monday, May 9, 2016

Southern Franklin County Cuisine Trail Sought

franklin countyA proposal to create a state-designated cuisine trail following a transportation loop that includes two scenic byways connecting  Saranac Lake, Paul Smiths and Tupper Lake, is moving forward.

More than 30 businesses and organizations have expressed interest. The next step is to gain letters of support from those interested in participating or supporting the initiative.

A public information meeting is scheduled for 6 pm Wednesday, May 11, at Paul Smith’s College in the Pine Room, located in the Joan Weill Student Center. An RSVP is requested by Tuesday, May 10. » Continue Reading.


Monday, April 18, 2016

Understanding Maple Syrup Color And Flavor

the outsider maple syrupSome years sugaring season goes by the book, which is to stay things starts cold, and over the course of four to six weeks spring arrives gradually and consistently. In such a scenario, the syrup usually starts out light colored and sweet, then as the weather warms and the microbial load in the sap increases, the color gets progressively darker and the flavor more complex. (What’s happening is the microbes are converting the sucrose in the sap to invert sugars, which leads to more caramelization and a different flavor profile.) Around the time the buds break, the biochemistry of the sap changes and it starts picking up some sometimes nasty off-flavors.

Then there are years like this, which don’t follow the script. I make syrup in southern Vermont, where we saw highs spike up into the seventies and lows plummet into the single digits. While the syrup color sort of tracked with the crazy temperatures, our last boil of the year produced syrup that had a light amber color and a dark, late-season flavor that left a weird aftertaste in your mouth. » Continue Reading.


Thursday, April 7, 2016

American Hazelnut: A Tasty Treat For Native Landscaping

american hazelnut in bloomWhile many people might be familiar with store bought European hazelnuts, or the popular spread Nutella which is made from hazelnuts and chocolate, the American hazelnut is also a tasty treat if you are lucky enough to beat the birds and other critters to it! The ½” edible nuts ripen in the fall, but the flowers typically bloom in April. » Continue Reading.



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