January 07, 2015
Volume 21 Issue 1
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support our continuing
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Issue of The Seed Piece:
January Brings Inside Work.
Kendall & Whitney
Corn Sheller. Over the years, a lot of corn has
been shelled in the State of Maine and Kendall & Whitney
have been involved in a lot of that work. Read more about
them in the next article below.
This is the right time of year for this
kind of work. When it’s windy and cold outside, it is very nice to have inside work
to keep one busy. Nowadays we’re steadily grading seed potatoes.
We have just finished shelling this year’s dried-down seed corn crops.
We have more to go on cleaning Black
Zucchini seed and our heirloom Long Pie Pumpkin.
Soon, Spring will hit the South and
we’ll be up to our ears shipping out organic seed orders to distant and
warm places. Those are good thoughts to contemplate for the
middle of this cold Maine Winter.
Megan Gerritsen & Family
Click here for the
Wood Prairie Farm Home Page.
| Video: Shelling
Organic Seed Corn on Wood Prairie Farm.
Years ago we were fortunate to be able
to pick up an old, turn-of-the century “New Universal” Corn Sheller
from a retired farmer in Southern Maine. This rugged,
well-designed and well-kept corn sheller unit was manufactured right
here in the State of Maine – likely around 1900 - by Kendall & Whitney Seed
Merchants, Growers and Importers.
& Whitney was established in 1852. Their
Portland Agricultural Warehouse and Seed Store was located in the
Whitney Building at Federal and Temple Streets. They were
manufacturers and sellers of Agricultural
and Horticultural Implements. The opening photo,
above, shows what the corn sheller looked like when we go it, complete
with hand crank and
heavy cast iron flywheel – located on the opposite side,
This winter we motorized the corn
sheller and used it to shell our 2014 crop of Organic
Dakota Ivory Flour Corn grown on Wood Prairie
Though the view is now
somewhat blocked by our new safety-guards over the pulleys, belts and
flywheel, the corn sheller works
exceptionally well. As you will see in this new
You Tube video (1:19), the corn sheller works
steady, accepting one ear at a time – as fast as it can be fed –
without ever plugging.
Reminding us that it is not only fun to
work on well-made equipment, but that agriculture has a rich and long
tradition of innovation and craftsmanship going back many, many, many
Jim & Megan
here for Our Wood Prairie farm Organic Maine Certified Seed Potatoes.
Shelling Organic Dakota Ivory Corn
on Wood Prairie Farm.
Jim having fun with a
well-working machine. Watch the
Organic Dutch Yellow Onion. Conquering
the world trend of increasing blandness.
| Special Offer: FREE Sack of Red or
Yellow Organic Onions.
Summer was a banner year for onions in Maine. Wood Prairie
Farm crops of both our Organic
Dutch Yellow Onions and our Organic
Rossa di Milano Onions produced very
well. This year the onions have a particularly good and
pleasing flavor .
Now we’d like to share our Organic Onion
Bounty with you! Get a FREE 2 lb. Sack of
Yellow Onions or Organic Rossa
di Milano Onions (Value $12.95) – your
Variety - when the amount of goods in your next order
totals $45 or more. FREE 2 lb. Sack of Organic
Onions Offer ends Midnight Monday, January 12, 2015.
Please use Promo Code WPF 439.
Your order and the FREE 2 lb. Sack of Organic
Onions must ship by 3/1/15. This offer may not be combined
with other offers. Please call or click today!
Call Wood Prairie Farm (800) 829-9765.
Here for Our Wood Prairie Farm Organic Fresh Vegetables Section.
| Don't Miss Open Sesame - The
Story of Seed!
Sean Kaminsky's Open Sesame -
The Story of Seed is an excellent film! We think
everyone will enjoy seeing it. You may watch
the trailer (2:55) now to whet your
Jim and our two girls first saw the
film in NYC in the evening of Earth Day last Spring, after he
spoke at the United Nations about the benefits of organic farming.
has extensive content about our
Organic Seed Growers and Trade Assn et al v. Monsanto lawsuit.
Sean and his film crew attended both of the Citizen Assemblies to Support
Family Farmers organized in conjunction with OVM court
oral arguments in NYC (2012) and Washington DC (2013).
is scheduled to be released
February 10th on DVD and Digitally. The digital
version is already
available for advance purchase and includes the
same special features as the DVD.
While the film will also be available
on Amazon, iTunes etc, by purchasing
the digital or DVD directly from Sean’s website
he will receive the greatest portion of the sale price. As a
talented filmmaker – and struggling artist - Sean deserves as much
support as we can offer him.
Jim & Megan
Here for our Wood Prairie Farm Certified Organic Vegetable Seed.
film you will want to watch.
| Notable Quotes:
Masanobu Fukuoka on Farming.
by Angela Wotton
|Recipe: Kale and
Extra-virgin olive oil
Yellow Onion, chopped fine
4 cloves of Red
Russian Garlic, minced
Carrot, chopped fine
2 pounds potatoes,
chopped into bite-sized chunks
1 quart water
1 bunch of curly kale, chopped into bite-sized pieces
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Something acidic—such as fresh lemon juice or Sherry vinegar
In a heavy-bottomed soup pot, turn heat to medium and add a generous
glug of olive oil(enough to cover the bottom, plus a little more).
Sauté the onion, stirring occasionally, until it's soft. Add the
garlic, give it a few stirs, and add the carrots. Let the carrots sauté
a few minutes, than add half of the potatoes and a good pinch of salt.
Let the potatoes sauté for a minute, stirring to coat with oil, and
then add half of the water. Turn the heat to high and bring the water
to a boil. Cover, turn heat to low, and let simmer until the potatoes
Use an immersion blender or regular blender to purée the
soup. Return the purée to the pot along with the kale, the
rest of the water, and a pinch of salt. Give it a stir, turn heat to
medium, and cover. Cook until the kale has begun to wilt—about five
minutes. Now add the other half of the potatoes, turn heat to low, and
cook, covered, until the kale and the second round of potatoes are both
tender. Add plenty of black pepper, a splash of lemon juice or vinegar,
and taste. Add more salt, pepper, or vinegar if needed.
Our Mailbox: Water
The Spuds, Getting What You Pay For.
Water The Spuds.
Jim...Have you ever tried to build this Wooden Potato Box and made it
work? One person says plant the potato variety that grows in whorls. Do
you know which varieties do this? Searches have proven fruitless.
Thank you for all you do and all the
best to you and your kin in 2015.
We have seen this technique but not
tried it ourselves. Some of the super high yield claims seems too good
to be true. The thick wood walls should keep potato roots cool and that
would be helpful. One big factor in growing potatoes in containers is
most folks can't comprehend just how much water potatoes need. The
tendency to under-water brings down yields. Some years ago Gardener's Supply
conducted a thorough container-growing potato variety trial. They found
performed and yielded best.
Thanks very much for your loyalty and
Getting What You
Farmers Predicted to Go Non-GMO and Organic in 2015. Hope
it can help bring the prices down. I buy organic of the dirty dozen,
but it is expensive and I am sure keeps some folks away.
When one purchases high quality goods
it is customary to expect to pay more for them. In addition, many of
the costs of conventional, chemically-grown and GE food have been
externalized and are not reflected in the cash register price. These
externalized costs include harm to human and livestock health, damage
to the environment and destruction to rural society. Also, 60% of
farmers do not receive government subsidy, and this includes most
organic farmers. Therefore, a strong argument can be made that the
farmgate price of certified organic produce and grains actually does
reflect reality and represents the true
cost of producing good, healthy food. In the end, the old adage
applies: "You get what you pay for."
|Wood Prairie Farm Quick
& Megan Gerritsen
Certified Organic, Direct from the Farm