Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Managing Livestock on Pasture Workshop to be hosted by the Piscataquis County Soil and Water Conservation District

Effective livestock management can be influenced by many factors, which differ depending upon the type of livestock. Whether you are managing beef or dairy cows, goats, sheep, horses or other animals, or interested in doing so, please join us on Saturday, April 5th from 9:00AM to noon at the Sangerville Community Room for a Managing Livestock on Pasture Workshop, where you can learn about how to harvest more high quality forage through livestock grazing, how to identify and manage weeds and other related topics.

 How USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service programs can assist you with effective livestock management will also be discussed. This workshop is being hosted by the Piscataquis County Soil and Water Conservation District (PCSWCD), in partnership with the University of Maine Cooperative Extension Piscataquis County office, and sponsored by the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS).

Donna Coffin, the University of Maine Cooperative Extension Educator in Piscataquis County for over 30 years will be a featured presenter at the Managing Livestock on Pasture Workshop. Her areas of expertise include sustainable agriculture and home horticulture for Piscataquis and Penobscot counties. She also plans statewide programs for the beef and horse industry. She received her Master of Science degree from the University of Maine in Animal Science in the area of animal nutrition.

USDA-NRCS Financial and Technical Assistance Programs that are available for livestock producers will be discussed by Lance Gorham, USDA-NRCS Resource Conservationist. Gorham received his Bachelors of Science in Forestry from the University of Missouri. He later received a Master of Studies in Environmental Law and a Juris Doctor from Vermont Law School. He worked throughout the Southeast with the United States Geological Survey-National Wetlands Research Center before moving to New England in 2000. In his work as a USDA-NRCS Resource Conservationist, Gorham applies his lifelong passion of natural resource management to help landowners in Maine. He also works with land trusts to ensure farm and forestlands are preserved for future generations.
Workshop participants will have the opportunity to ask questions about effective livestock management. Informational handouts will be provided to support the topics discussed during the workshop.


Although there is no cost for the Managing Livestock on Pasture Workshop, pre-registration is required by Monday, March 31st. For more information and to pre-register, please stop by our office at the USDA Service Center, located at the Pine Crest Business Park at 42 Engdahl Drive in Dover-Foxcroft. You may also pre-register by emailing the PCSWCD at info@piscataquisswcd.org or by calling 564 – 2321, Extension 3. If you need special accommodations to attend this workshop, please notify the PCSWCD by March 28th

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Tree and Plant Sale at the Piscataquis County Soil and Water Conservation District


Even though the snow keeps falling, we are starting to see and hear the signs of springtime! Now is the time to plan ahead for your orchards, gardens and natural landscape. The Piscataquis County Soil and Water Conservation District Tree and Plant Sale pre-order deadline is Wednesday, March 12th, with pickup dates from April 21st through 25th.
This year we are pleased to offer a variety of bare root stock trees and shrubs for landscaping, whether your passion is for flowering trees, rose bushes, native berry bushes or nuts! We also offer an abundance of orchard trees, including apples, plums, crabapples, and cherries, as well as companion plants to help your orchard thrive. We have strawberry bundles, blueberries, grape vines and even asparagus. Some plants provide both food and habitat for birds, mammals, butterflies and also bees, which are necessary for pollination. We have ferns, lily of the valleys, giant Solomon’s seal and other plants to enhance the shady areas in your yard as well as garden and tree peonies to add real show and fragrance to your sunny garden.
We also offer some medicinal plants such as Canadian wild ginger, lavender, and arnica, as well as plants that add winter interest like red osier dogwood and witch hazel. We are offering hard-cider apple collections, as well as a hybrid plum collection, to help get your new orchard started. We have also added hops to our offerings for those of you who like to brew your own beer! Special this year, we have a limited supply of locally grown chestnut seedlings, both American as well as hybrid, to help repopulate the chestnut trees that were taken by blight 100 years ago. As Piscataquis County is on the outer edges of the chestnut trees original region, successful  re-establishment of these stately trees is currently underway in our region, and landowners are encouraged to get involved in this effort. Most of our offerings are hardy to zone 4 so they should be well adapted to our area.
Creative and functional landscaping not only can prevent or eliminate problem areas on your land or adjacent water, but also can enhance the value of your home. Erosion control plants may be necessary for steeper areas of your property, areas adjacent to water bodies for prevention of runoff, and any area where there are no existing plants to help keep the soil in place. Our selection of native Maine plants can also be used to create beautiful rain gardens.
Rain gardens are designed to utilize water from roofs, driveways and other hard areas to control runoff problems and to protect water quality. They are not only functional, but are also attractive additions for a welcoming landscape. Our landscape helpers include Plantskydd Organic Animal Repellent, Recycled Rain Barrels, Kitchen Pails and Garden Composters as well as Biodegradable Mesh Tree Protector Sleeves. Plantskydd is effective against deer, rabbits, voles, moose, chipmunks, and squirrels. It offers over-winter plant protection for up to 6 months! No other repellent lasts as long. Plantskydd is ORGANIC - the first animal repellent to be OMRI listed by the Organic Materials Review Institute for organic food production. It is made in the USA.

For more information about the wide variety of plants and products available through this fundraiser that supports our educational programs, please contact the district office at 564 - 2321, extension 3, email us at info@piscataquisswcd.org or stop by the United States Department of Agriculture Service Center in the Pine Crest Business Park at 42 Engdahl Drive, Dover – Foxcroft, Monday through Friday, 8am until 4:30pm.

Monday, December 30, 2013

Workshops for New Farmers to be Held at Agricultural Trade Show


Bangor, ME – December 27, 2013 -- Are you a new farmer?  Do you need help navigating the various programs and services available to help you succeed in your new farming enterprise?

The Beginning Farmer Resource Network (BFRN)…a coalition of farm service providers supporting the whole farm community including agriculture, aquaculture, and forestry…will be conducting workshops on various topics for new farmers at the Agricultural Trade Show to be held at the Augusta Civic Center on January 7-9, 2014. 

The schedule, topics and locations for these workshops can be found in the Agricultural Trade Show program brochure, which can be found at the Get Real Get Maine website at www.getrealmaine.com .  The workshops will be held from 9 a.m.-8 p.m. on Wednesday, January 8th and from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. on Thursday, January 9th. There will also be a networking room where you can come and talk to a representative of BFRN about your farm.  The networking room, which will be in the Knox Room, will be open Tuesday-Thursday during the hours of the Trade Show.

BFRN is a group of federal, state and local farm service providers who have joined together to assist aspiring, beginning, and transitioning farmers…providing information and assistance on everything from the soil to your wallet.  They are dedicated to helping farmers succeed, as well as ensuring that agriculture stays prosperous in the future.


Go to BFRN’s website at www.umaine.edu/beginning-farmer-resource-network/…the one stop website for new farmers...for a “toolbox” of information on important issues/concerns that farmers should think about when starting their business.  

Monday, September 23, 2013

Approaching 3 months open

It's fall!  Can you believe it?  Fossa's General Store has been open for 3 months come Friday the 27th and it has zoomed by. 
We now work with almost 65 LOCAL farmers & producers; some with only berries seasonally and others that make 1 or 2 deliveries a week! 

We use only 3 'traditional' vendors; Maine Distributors for our Maine Root soda, Dennis Paper for our paper goods, dishes and other kitchen supplies and Pepsi who provides 3 types of soda only but quality juices, water etc.  Pepsi also generously provides coolers for our store front.

Fossa's Kitchen is cookin' up more and more food made with as many local ingredients as we can!  ...and we are coming up with more recipes as the cooler weather approaches... Our pizza is selling better and better and people are becoming more adventurous in choosing their combination of toppings :)

You can now find our Homemade Pizza Dough for sale in our storefront freezer.  It is my own recipe and made fresh, bagged and frozen and will keep for a long time in your freezer.

We are adding more and more items to our bakery display case both from our producers and from our own kitchen.
We are becoming a “Bread Headquarters” with our own homemade bread & biscuits to producers providing their own unique breads.

We just got word from the Dept. of Ag that we can have 4 tables in the storefront (no waiting on you though, that is another kind of license), so that during the cold months you can buy a pizza or other food / drink and sit and watch the traffic on Main Street :)
That will be coming in the near future.

As the holidays approach and veggies are less abundant, Fossa's will carry more gifts and decorating items.  We are getting a new line of jewelry in this week (turquoise, beads & stones), we have awesome stick ponies, walking sticks, ice fishing traps, soaps, wreaths, Indian corn, pumpkins... so much more; we are a true General Store!

Open Tuesday thru Saturday 10 am to 7 pm
Sundays 11 am to 4 pm
Closed on Mondays...

Thanks to all that are supporting your LOCAL farmers & producers and Fossa's General Store.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

2nd Month down and lots of growing...

Fossa's General Store on 4 Main Street in Dexter has just finished it's 2nd month in business and we are please to say it is growing in leaps and bounds!
We now represent over 60 LOCAL Farmers and Producers within the store and still growing.
Fossa's is truely a "General" Store carrying everything from produce & pickles, milk &d Maine Soda, meats & coffee, note paper, greeting cards, fish flies & ice fishing supplies to gifts and decorating the home items

Our kitchen is growing daily as we come up with new ideas with an old fashion 'comfort food' twist.
We boast our Wood Fired Brick Oven that we cook designer pizzas, Fossa's Hand Pies and so much more.  We will be doing artisan breads in the near future.

Fossa's Hours are:
Tuesday thru Saturday 10 am to 7 pm
Sundays 11 am to 4
Closed on Mondays

We do daily posts to our Facebook page of specials, products and new daily items...

https://www.facebook.com/FossasGeneralStore

University of Maine Cooperative Extension Event at Rogers Farm



Join the University of Maine Cooperative Extension at Rogers Farm on September 10th at 6:00pm for Dividing Perennial Plants with a special focus on Iris.

Fall is a great time to divide perennial plants.  Mary Betts will demonstrate how to divide different types of iris while Kate Garland offer tips and show how to divide other perennial plants.

No reservation is needed and the event will be held rain or shine.

Rogers Farm in located on the Bennoch Road in Stillwater. From I-95 take exit 193. Turn right onto Stillwater Ave, at the third traffic light take a left onto Bennoch Road. Travel 1.5 miles. Rogers Farm will be on your right across from the University Research Farm. You will see the farm buildings on your left.

For more information or to request a disability accommodation (please allow two weeks for a disability request), call 207.942.7396.

About University of Maine Cooperative Extension:
As a trusted resource for almost 100 years, University of Maine Cooperative Extension has supported UMaine’s land and sea grant public education role by conducting community-driven, research-based programs in every Maine county. 


UMaine Extension helps support, sustain and grow the food-based economy. It is the only entity in our state that touches every aspect of the Maine Food System, where policy, research, production, processing, commerce, nutrition, and food security and safety are integral and interrelated. UMaine Extension also conducts the most successful out-of-school youth educational program in Maine through 4-H. 

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Fossa's announces "Soft Opening" Thursday, June 27th

Fossa's General Store will be having a "Soft Opening" this Thursday, June 27th at 10 am after 3 1/2 years of starting and stopping and starting and stopping on the construction due to forces outside of our control. 

But we sure do have control now and very excited to show you all what marvelous work our local contractors and volunteer have transformed our place into! 

I like to call it "Farmer Chic" which is fitting for highlighting Local Farmers & Local Producers food & wares.
We will not have all items in place on Thursday because as you know many items planted just are not ready yet but will be in another month or so.  So, we are planning a big ole' Grand Opening in August with all the bells and whistles.

We are featuring “Locally Grown, Locally Produced” products and are pleased to be supporting locally agriculture primarily in a 35+ mile radius of Dexter, but for products not available we will have other Maine goods.

Please join us next week, but in the meantime join our Facebook page for all the latest news, photos, specials and farm spotlights & highlights.

Much Happiness,
Judy~


Fossa’s General Store Facebook Page:  https://www.facebook.com/FossasGeneralStore