Wood Prairie Farm                                                                                                                            In This Issue of The Seed Piece: 
 Seed Piece Newsletter                                                                                                                   Watering the Crop.
Organic News and Commentary
                                                                                              What Countries have Banned GMO Crops?
      Thursday, July 21, 2011                                                                                                           Recipe: Whole Wheat Walnut Breadsticks.                                                                                                                                                                       Special Offer: FREE Organic Pancake Mix.
                                                                                                      Honest Food Goes On the Road. Lawsuit Against Monsanto's GMO Patents.
                                                                                                                      What Did I Miss? Victory, Round Up, Tweedledee and Tweedledum.
                                                                                                                                                                                                  The Real Reason for Mud.  
                                                                                                                                                            Our Mailbox: More Potatoes & Less Monsanto.
                                                                 Snowball and Wood Prairie Lettuce Patch.                

Our Great Pyrenees keeping track of Flashy Troutback, Cardinale and Summer Mix in our family garden. Soon it will be time to plant Fall Mix.
Watering the Crop.

     After a very wet May and June Northern Maine turned very dry in July.  Until last night this year had mimicked our pattern from 2010: wet planting (May & June), dry summer (July & August) and wet harvest (Sept & October). The pattern we have developed over the last eight years or so are stubborn and persistent stretches of barely uninterrupted wet or dry.
     In fact our focus over the last week has been setting up irrigation for our organic seed potato and vegetable crops. Unlike folks out West, irrigation is something we often haven’t had to carry out.  Maine’s moist climate historically gives us somewhat uneven but year-round precipitation. In years past, before this climate change, we might have a dry spell and go two or three weeks before we’d get a rain. Well, last night was like old times as loud thunderstorms rolled through here beginning about dark at 830 pm. By this morning we’d had just shy of 2” rain. So far another inch of rain has fallen today. This good soaking will make the thirsty crops happy – including our wheat and pastures.
     The crops look good.  We had some low ground drownout due to excessive rain back in May and June.  We’ve had some pretty good daytime heat (high 80s which is hot by Maine standards) but we’ve kept comfortable with our typically cool nights. In fact, a couple of 48oF mornings in the last ten days made us consider firing up the woodstove to take the chill off. But this is July.  Wood stove fires don’t come around here until August.
Jim & Megan

What Countries have Banned GMO Crops?
     Alicia Bayer has put together a good and readable listing of countries that have banned GMOs. The situation is certainly dynamic.  Bayer’s list is barely a month old, and since then Peru’s Congress has voted 56-0 to institute a moratorium on GMOs (as reported in our last Seed Piece. Click here for story). Interesting and worth a read.  Jim      

Whole Wheat Walnut Breadsticks

Photo by Angela Wotton

Recipe: Whole Wheat Walnut Breadsticks.

2 tsp active dry yeast

1 1/2 c lukewarm water

1 tsp honey

1/4 c walnut oil

2 c organic whole wheat flour

1 1/3 c all-purpose flour

1/2 finely chopped walnuts

1 1/2 tsp sea salt

Dissolve the yeast in the water in a large bowl or in the bowl of a stand mixer. Stir in honey and let stand for five minutes. Stir in walnut oil.

Combine whole wheat flour and 1 cup of the all-purpose flour, walnuts and salt. Add to liquid mixture. Stir by hand and turn dough out on lightly floured surface; knead for 10 minutes, adding flour as necessary to keep dough from sticking. If using a mixer, mix at medium speed for 8 to 10 minutes. The dough should be elastic and just slightly sticky.

Lightly flour work surface. Using your hands or rolling pin, roll the dough into a 14 x 4 inch rectangle. Brush the top with oil. Cover with plastic and a damp kitchen towel. Allow to rise for 1 to 1 1/2 hours.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees with racks positioned in the middle and upper thirds of the oven. Brush sheet pans with olive oil or walnut oil. Cut the dough crosswise into four equal pieces. Cut each piece crosswise into six equal pieces. Roll each between the board and your hands as if you were making a rope until it is as long as the baking sheet. Place 1 inch apart until you've filled two baking sheets. Continue to shape the remaining breadsticks while the first batch is baking.

Place in oven and bake 15 minutes. Switch the pans top to bottom and bake another 10 minutes until the breadsticks are nicely browned. You can also flip them over halfway through for more even baking. Cook on a rack.

These breadsticks can also be frozen and recrisped in a medium oven for 10 minutes.

Yield: Two dozen breadsticks

You'll like these,


Source: NYTimes.com

Special Offer: FREE Organic Pancake Mix           

     This time of year as farmers we seem to always be in a hurry.  Meals revolve around salads and greens from the garden and potato salad (old crop potatoes make the best potato salad). Pancakes hit the spot anytime and make for a delicious quick meal for breakfast, dinner or supper - especially when it's too hot to bake and heat up the house.
     Here's your chance to earn a FREE  24 oz Wood Prairie Organic Whole Grain Pancake Mix ($7.95 value) - Your choice of our Oatmeal, Acadian Buckwheat, Whole Wheat, or Ultralight Spelt - with your next purchase of $35 or more.
     Please use WPF Promo code WPF1028.  FREE Organic Pancake Mix must ship with your order and order must ship by 8/1/11.  Offer ends Tues July 26, 2011. Please call or click today!
Click here for our Wood Prairie Farm Organic Grains Section

Honest Food Goes On the Road. Lawsuit Against Monsanto's GMO Patents.

     Our Honest Food Outreach activities aimed at educating the public about the issues involved in our organic community lawsuit challenging Monsanto’s transgenic patents will go on the road beginning in August.  Tell your friends and if you attend any of these events be sure to check out our Honest Food booth, take in our teach-ins, say ‘hi’ and show your support for freedom to choose an alternative from a future of the GMO death culture. Jim

Photo by Consumers International
What Did I Miss?
              Victory, Round Up, Tweedledee and Tweedledum.

     With lots going on we're using regular posts on our Facebook wall to keep you tuned into the Wood Prairie Organic Community. Here are some highlights since our last Seed Piece that you won't want to miss. Jim & Megan.

     • Long Sought Victory. Major milestone concludes a 20 year struggle and will free from WTO punishment countries that choose to label GMO foods "In a striking reversal of their previous position, on Tuesday, during the annual Codex summit in Geneva, the US delegation dropped its opposition to the GM labeling guidance document, allowing it to move forward and become an official Codex text." Story from Consumers International here.

     • Round Up Birth Defects. Don't miss The Ecologist's Inside Story of Monsanto and the Glyphosate Birth Defect Data. "Industry and EU regulators knew as long ago as the 1980's-1990's that Roundup, the world's best selling herbicide, causes birth defects but they failed to inform the public." Monsanto's Roundup (glyphosate) is inextricably linked to their GMO seed technology. "The pesticide industry and regulators have repeatedly misled the public with claims that glyphosate is safe."
     • USDA Goes Rogue. Again. USDA abrogates its responsibility and exposes its shameful pro-GMO bias by asserting that transgenic Bluegrass is exempt from regulatory review. Tom Philpott writes in Mother Jones "Wait, Did the USDA Just Deregulate ALL New Genetically modified Crops?"
Good Article.

Monsanto Under SEC Probe. When will they ever learn? Article from Financial Times of London.       

 Please click here to become a Friend of Wood Prairie Farm on Facebook and keep connected. Thanks! Jim. 

The Real Reason for Mud.

    Our son and second oldest, 17 year old Caleb is a farm boy that was born to drive.  Unlike the rest of us he’s a natural and has been driving since he was five. He knows every mud puddle on the farm and in the woods.  So it was no surprise when he and his friends chipped in $200 late last winter to buy an old beater jeep to fix up and navigate off-road .
     It also came as no surprise that the 4th of July Mud Run at the local Houlton Fair caught the boys’ attention. With determination they worked well into the night of July 3 replacing the head gasket (a Spring ‘puddle’ had been deeper than imagined and they sucked water down the carburetor into the engine and blew out the old head gasket), jacking up the chassis with a forklift and welding in angle iron risers (poor man’s air shocks), and securing the prolapsing gas tank with a two-inch ratchet strap. Need we add that the jeep had long ago lost reverse and, as you will hear, it's muffler.  Here’s the You Tube video of Caleb’s first (of three) mud runs at the Fair. The orange shirts are the security mechanism for the pit crews.You are only young once.  Jim & Megan.

Our Mailbox: More Potatoes & Less Monsanto.

Fund-To-Fight Monsanto.

Jim & Megan, thanks for keeping us all updated. This is an amazing undertaking, and we the eating public, appreciate your huge efforts. Have you created a fund-to-fight-Monsanto yet? Let us know when and where we can contribute to a secure site. Very best wishes!

Hollis ME

     Thanks, you may send donations to any of the plaintiff organizations. Organic Seed Growers and Trade Association, the lead plaintiff, and of which I am president, has a secure site for donations. https://www.osgata.org/support-osgata.
     OSGATA is using donations designated 'lawsuit' to develop our lawsuit communications capability. Getting the word out to the people and the press about the details of our battle is parallel important work we are doing outside of the courtroom.
     It's not right that Monsanto's GMO genes can trespass onto and invade an innocent farmer's crop and then that farmer faces patent infringement litigation by Monsanto. Our lawsuit is not after money. We want Monsanto's bullying of family farmers and their GMO pollution to stop.
     Appreciate your words and offers of support. Jim.

About Growing Potatoes.

Inbox.      Hi Jim.

I have a few questions.

1. What happened to the Rose Gold in the picture? Disease, deficiency or damage from a pest? Not all my Rose Golds had this and the stalks and leaves from this plant that the potato came from were yellowed.

2. It hasn't been quite 90 days yet for the Rose Gold but some of the plants had already produced some very large tubers which we started picking. If we leave the plants in will the small undeveloped ones still develop?

3. What is the best way to store them? The ones we already dug, I left the dirt on them and put them in the fridge inside of a burlap bag and some others in the crisper where there is now some condensation forming.

Llano NM


1. It looks like Pitted Scab to us. The yellow leaves may simply be 'old age' or senescense.

2. Yes, absolutely they will grow.

3. Yes. Store them unwashed in earth-like conditions: dark, cool (38ºF ideal) moist. The fridge will work fine for short and medium term storage. Sounds like the crisper drawer doesn't allow enough air movement so I would store the potatoes elsewhere in the fridge. Burlap works well.

     Good Luck. Jim.

Wood Prairie Farm Quick Links

Jim & Megan Gerritsen
Wood Prairie Farm
49 Kinney Road
Bridgewater, Maine 04735
(800)829-9765 Certified Organic, Direct from the Farm