Friday May 16, 2014
Issue of The Seed Piece:
Maine Bulls Eye Receives 140” of Winter Snow.
late Spring snows in Colorado, New Mexico and the Midwest have proved
just how fickle May can be. While May snow in Maine is rare,
we still clearly remember 1991 as the year when we received 4” of snow
on May 23 – back when Springs were early and after we had finished
planting our potato crop. Our old-timer neighbors who had
experienced this snow occurrence before, taught us that snow covering a
planted potato field was in reality, ‘poor man’s fertilizer.’
They were right. Translated, we believe the coating of
slow-melting-snow conserves every last drop of water and in doing so
serves to encourage the potato plants to increase ‘tuber set’ (the
number of tubers per hill). A ‘high set’ is always the
foundation of a bin-busting crop.
In Maine it's a late Spring by every
measure. Seven days ago, the soil dried enough so we could
first begin to work our fields. We’ve now planted our Roblin
and our Hull-less
. Also planted yesterday was our
crop of red and yellow onions from transplants.
The soil has been cold and behind
yesterday the morning soil temperature hit 45ºF for the first time this
With several days worth of
showers in the forecast, we’re expecting we’ll be able to begin
planting potatoes late next week after it dries out and the soil warms
up some more. Again this year, as for the past fifteen years,
one of the safest bets around is that come Memorial Day weekend we’ll
be in the field planting our potatoes.
Megan Gerritsen & Family
Click here for the
Wood Prairie Farm Home Page.
| Jackson County
Oregon Primed to Protect Farmers and Establish GE Crop Ban.
History is in the making and all eyes
are on southern Oregon’s Jackson County. Next Tuesday, May
20, Jackson County citizens will vote on a local initiative -
known as Measure 15-119 - aimed at providing local family farmers with
justice and protection.
At issue are local family farmers - including
members of Organic Seed Growers and Trade
Association (OSGATA) - whose seed crops are
being contaminated by genetically engineered (GE) pollution from
arrogant Swiss Biotech giant Syngenta. The
‘Our Family Farms Coalition’ website contains an
effective television spot (0:31) and a convincing radio ad (1:00)
featuring local farmers. Don’t miss them!
This historic local control GE ban in a major seed
growing region is a defensive measure by a coalition of 150 courageous
Jackson County farmers, the Jackson County Grange, over 350 businesses
and committed local citizens determined to protect family farmers'
right-to-farm and their livelihoods. Meanwhile - as has become the
despicable pattern seen elsewhere - RECORD
AMOUNTS of corporate campaign dollars are flooding into Oregon
to defeat this measure. This outside corporate money is from
self-serving, out-of-state, multinational Biotech and chemical
companies – like Monsanto
and Syngenta - determined to frighten voters by spreading
lies, disinformation and scare tactics against the measure.
Voting by mail closes today. Options to vote still
remaining beyond today are dropping ballots in specific 24-hour drop
boxes and turning out on Election Day. Jackson County lies on
the California border and surrounds county seat Medford and nearby
These good folks and allies battling Biotech bullies need
our help in purchasing last minute media ads. If
you are able, please hit their DONATE button and
help honest Oregon family farmers gain justice and defeat the
international Biotech cartel. Thanks!
Jim & Megan
Here for our Wood Prairie Farm Organic Vegetable Seed.
County Vote. Grassroots
effort to protect family farmers.
| Phil Howard Chart:
Corporate Takeover of Organics.
Click on Image to Enlarge
Monsanto. Be sure your portfolio supports your values.
| Coalition Supports
Divestiture of Monsanto Stock.
Because of its dark 110-year
history, Monsanto has understandably earned the
public’s distain. Monsanto is infamous as the manufacturer of
Agent Orange, DDT, PCBs and Roundup herbicide and many of today’s
genetically engineered (GE) crops.
Many of us long ago made the commitment
to have nothing to do with Monsanto. On Wood Prairie Farm we
do not buy from Monsanto and we will not sell to Monsanto. Twice,
Monsanto has attempted to buy from us, but we prevented them.
It is a fact that today many mutual
funds do hold Monsanto stock. Without knowing it, you may be
inadvertandly supporting Monsanto because of hidden stock holdings.
Currently, Monsanto is valued at $60
billion in the marketplace and with 525 million shares of Monsanto
stock outstanding, the three largest mutual fund shareholders,
Vanguard, Fidelity and State Street own nearly 16% of Monsanto stock
collectively, making them the largest public owners of Monsanto stock.
by our allies at Food Democracy Now! a coalition
of dedicated organizations is urging
Americans to divest themselves of Monsanto stock.
Divestiture Events in seven major U.S. cities
were held one week ago on May 9.
support this effort by pledging to divest Monsanto stocks
Jim & Megan
Here For Our Wood Prairie Garden Tools Which Get the Job Done.
| Notable Quotes:
Wendell Barry on Joy.
Salted Rye Cookies.
by Angela Wotton
Salted Rye Cookies
1 c butter, room temperature
3/4 c sugar
1 large egg
1/2 tsp finely grated orange zest
2 1/2 c Rye
3 T Turbinado sugar
In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar together with an electric
mixer until light and fluffy. Beat in egg, pinch of salt and orange
zest. Gradually mix in flour. Divide dough in two and shape into logs
2-inches in diameter. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap and chill for at
least one hour.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. On waxed paper combine 1 1/2 tsp salt
and turbinado sugar. Roll dough logs in mixture and cover evenly. Cut
logs into 1/8" thick rounds and place on cookie sheet 1-inch apart.
Bake cookies about 16 minutes until lightly browned at edges. Cool on
| Special Offer: FREE Organic
How do you tell if you need to
supplement the fertility of
your garden with Organic
We get asked that question all the time. Here is our answer. Unless you have a long
garden, you probably would benefit from the use of additional
Here’s a simple way to prove
this likely fertility
need to yourself. Take
a row of one
variety of potatoes (or try this same technique with another crop). On half of the row, plant
as you normally do
without any additional organic fertilizer.
Then on the other half, place Organic
Potato Fertilizer two inches below
placement of the seed potato pieces,
at a rate of one pound organic
fertilizer per ten feet of row. Take notes and observe growth
season and at harvest. In
you will find crop performance and yield will improve with the added
If you like, you can repeat this testing procedure in
and with different crops.
here's your chance to earn yourself a FREE 3 lbs. Sack of
Organic Potato Fertilizer
(Value $9.95) when the amount of goods in your next order is $40 or
Organic Potato Fertilizer offer
ends Midnight Monday, May 19, 2014, so better hurry!
Promo Code WPF1177. Your order must ship with FREE
Organic Potato Fertilizer and entire
order must ship by 5/30/14. This
offer may not be combined with other offers. Please call or
today! Wood Prarie Farm (800) 829-9765.
Here for Our Wood Prairie Farm Organic Certified Seed Potato Section.
FREE Organic Fertilizer.
Available if you act fast.
Our Mailbox: Saving
Money, Food Halls and Food Pills, Long Term Good.
And you can save organic seed
which I would think saves a lot of money.
Yes, many organic seed farmers are firmly
committed to growing
open-pollinated varieties. OP varieties have been the benefit that -
given adequate isolation from similar varieties in the same vicinity -
the seed may be saved and planted the next year. This OP seed saving
allows seed to be improved through selection and local adaptation.
& Food Pills.
Have you seen this? NY
Times article "So Much Food, It Fills a Hall". Obviously
more of what I said about the gross-over production and ubiquitous
quality of food in western markets is being demonstrated in Food Halls.
The people with the most money are living in high-density urban
environments. They need to eat two, three, four, five (etc.) times a
day. Why shouldn't our "no-governor, none-stop" food system be draining
resources and exploiting the food production base worldwide in order to
market to them? Even as technology improves, the game is to get more
different food items to the citified market place as fast as possible
and reap the greatest profits possible into a few powerful hands. And
everybody is in the game because it is a game of money, not food.
Sadly the NY Times does not hold a monopoly on
covering bad food ideas. Here's competition from the Atlantic, Soylent,
Meal Replacements, and the Hurdle of Boredom.
Some recent statistics I read from
Politico tell a sobering story. U.S. sales of organic goods are now up
to $31 billion annually. However, farm gate income going to farmers is
just $3.1 billion. That means on average just ten cents of every
organic dollar spent are going to American organic farmers. With
Walmart's intended invasion of the organic market, look for increased
offshore sourcing of raw materials. Folks can help American family
farmers by spending their dollars as close to the farm as possible so
that their support gets into the hands of the farmers themselves. Too
much of the consumer retail dollar does not go to the farmer who makes
it all happen. This monthly chart from our
friends at National Farmers Union depicts the overall food situation
graphically. A real challenge of our times is
the co-opting of authentic family farmer organic food by
corporations with a big marketing budget and
bought-and-paid-for-friends in high places.
Long Term Good.
one question for you. What do you think of subsidies either for big ag
or organic farms? Thanks.
New York, NY
Organic farming seeks long term stability and
therefore perpetual societal benefit. Unfortunately in this predatory
economy, anyone acting for long term good - for example farm
conservation activities which benefit the soil, air, water and trees -
is at a distinct economic disadvantage competing with those only
concerned over short term gain. It seems reasonable to me for society
to reimburse organic farmers for their investment in long term societal
gain which the market is not capable of paying good farmers to farm
|Wood Prairie Farm Quick
& Megan Gerritsen
Certified Organic, Direct from the Farm