Although fresh snow covers our open fields and backyard gardens, the first day of spring is less than a month away. And growers around the Granite State are planning their gardens including their choice of cover crops.
UNH Cooperative Extension welcomes farmers and backyard growers to learn about advanced cover cropping at a farmer-to-farmer workshop in Charlestown, NH. It will be held at the Student Conservation Association (689 River Road) on Friday, March 16, 2012, from 1 to 4 pm.
Offered free of charge, the program will delve into the use of cover crops for weed control, soil fertility, organic matter addition, bio-fumigants and other beneficial uses. The program is suitable for both commercial farmers (large and small) and backyard growers.
Dr. Eric Sideman from the Maine Organic Farmers & Gardeners’ Association (MOFGA) will discuss effective crop rotations. And two local farmers, Pooh Sprague of Edgewater Farm and Dorn Cox of Sheltering Rock Farm, will share their knowledge and experience.
Cover crops play an important role in sustainable farming. They are grown to cover the soil during idle periods. Although usually planted in the fall to provide winter cover, some growers use cover crops as part of a summer rotation. They can help to:
- revitalize the soil
- recycle nutrients
- prevent damaging erosion and run-off
- protect water quality
- suppress weeds and
- reduce disease
The choice of cover crops depends on your planting needs and objectives; different cover crops offer different benefits. The March 16 workshop will delve into advanced concepts and practices.
For more info and to register, contact Dawn Bozogan at firstname.lastname@example.org or 603-863-9200.
A program flyer is available at http://extension.unh.edu/events/index.cfm?e=app.home&calendar_id=1015
For ag-related materials and programs (for all ages), visit your cooperative extension, on-line in NH at: http://extension.unh.edu/agric/agric.htm.