The first in a series of six training workshops for area farmers will be held on June 29th from 6 - 8pm at Maple Tree Farm in Pawlet. A workshop fee of $10 is payable at the door. No pre-registration required. Farmer Colin Stabile and NOFA-VT livestock advisor Willie Gibson will lead a pasture walk and discussion of livestock fencing options. In the context of what the Stabiles have learned over 6 years of set-stock rotational grazing, we will discuss how we can raise the bar of benefits for land, plants, livestock, and people.
Some details will include principles and management of: stocking densities, plant rest, grazing periods, severe and over-grazing, soil building and fertility, time and timing of livestock moves, nutrient and water cycling, pasture community dynamics, energy flow, and planning the best grazing system for your operation. Gretchen and Colin raise naturally certified Black Angus beef and naturally raised pork on their farm in Pawlet.
Directions to 916 Herrick Brook Rd. Pawlet: From Route 30, turn onto Route 133 North in the center of Pawlet Village (Left turn from the North, Right turn from the South). Take your first right onto Herrick Brook Road. Farm will be 1 mile down on your right. Look for signs and follow the farm road out to the back pastures.
This summer, RAFFL is again teaming up with NOFA-VT to bring area farmers six on-farm workshops on topics and skills important to success. Workshops are relevant and engaging for any commercial farmer – from apprentices and folks just starting up to established growers.
Mark your calendar for other workshops in the series, including “On-farm Poultry Slaughter” on July 13th, “Basic Cover Crop Strategies for Soil Health and Seed Production” on July 27th, “Introduction to Starting a Commercial Goat Dairy” on August 6th, “Worry-Less Winter Production” on August 22nd, and “Equipment and tools for small scale vegetable production” on September 7th.
In addition to learning important skills and information for use on your farm, these workshops provide an opportunity to meet and network with other commercial growers and producers in the Region. After the July 27th workshop, make plans to stay late for a NOFAvore Social, complete with pizza’s made in NOFA’s mobile pizza oven. On August 22nd, there will be a potluck following the high tunnel workshop.
Workshop details, registration information, directions and information on the host farms can be found on RAFFL’s website, www.rutlandfarmandfood.org, by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling Kristen Smith, RAFFL’s Community Engagement Coordinator at (802) 417 - 1528. Be sure to check the details on those workshops you are most interested in - some require pre-registration!
The workshops are sponsored by the Rutland Area Farm and Food Link (RAFFL) and the Northeast Organic Farming Association of Vermont (NOFA-VT) and will be held every week on farms around the Rutland Region from late June to September. If you miss any of the workshops in this series, video recaps of each workshop can be found at www.raffl.wordpress.com and www.rutlandfarmandfood.org.
The Rutland Area Farm and Food Link is a non-profit supporting the growth of a thriving agricultural system that connects local farms with the communities and consumers of the Rutland Region. The Northeast Organic Farming Association of Vermont is a nonprofit association of farmers, gardeners, and consumers working to promote an economically viable and ecologically sound Vermont food system for the benefit of current and future generations.