A Botanist-Bartender’s Ode to the Dandelion

The idea of ​​a spring tonic is one that spans many cultures throughout time. This phenomenon was partially born out of necessity, since, historically, people needed something nutritious—be it food, drink or medicine—to replenish their strength after surviving off preserves and storage crops all winter. However, part of the appeal of the restorative powers of … Read more

The Lasting Legacy of the First Farmland Preservation Program

Drive through New York’s western Long Island on any given afternoon—particularly as rush hour approaches—and you’ll be moved not by the idyllic rolling hills of verdant farmland but, rather, by the throb of traffic on the LIE (local parlance for the ever-crowded highway known as the Long Island Expressway). The densely populated, 118-mile-long island, which … Read more

Do Farmers Really Need Nitrogen Fertilizer? – A Year in the Life of a Farmer

As we hear more and more about agriculture’s contributions to climate change, a lot of people are wondering why farmers can’t just stop using fertilizer. Some link the need for fertilizer to “industrial” agriculture, or “corporate” farming, or worst of them all, “factory farming”. Many people seem to believe the use of fertilizer strip-mines the … Read more

Interested In Turkeys? Learn From Our Turkey Tales

For several years of Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners, the quality of the featured roasted turkey grew more and more disappointing. This was often due to the mass-processing practice of injecting slaughtered birds with water and other additives to boost weight. The early culling of immature birds for selling small turkeys and the ongoing hybridization of … Read more

Vineyards Grapple With How to Best Keep Their Workers Safe

Shannon Donnell remembers a time, just five years ago, when she didn’t see a wildfire break out until late November—well after wine grapes in Sonoma County, California had been fully harvested. Now, Donnell says that wildfires start up right at the beginning of harvest season, typically at the tail end of August, when vineyard workers … Read more

How To Try To Revive A Chick With Health Concerns

Chickens are relatively inexpensive, easy to care for and small compared to other livestock. This makes them perfect for backyard and urban chicken-keepers. Whether you get your birds through the mail or hatch them on site, it’s an exciting day when your new chicks arrive. Despite their small size and potential fragility, chicks tend to … Read more

Your Avian Influenza Concerns Addressed

Ever since the mainstream media finally began letting the general public know about the avian influenza (HPAI) epidemic, my social media and email have been flooded with questions from friends, family, and who followers poultry, know someone who does, or are simply Very concerned about how this epidemic will affect the birds and other animals … Read more

What You Should Know About Bee Genetics

There was a time when beekeepers had just a few bee varieties from which to choose. There were golden Italians, dark brown Carniolans, maybe the occasional Buckfast. But, over the last few decades, researchers have gained significant insights into honeybee characteristics, behaviors and associated genetic traits. Queen breeders have carefully selected for everything from honey … Read more