Practical Farmers’ 2017 main field day season is almost upon us! Our first event will take place on Sunday, May 21, at Blue Gate Farm, operated by Jill Beebout and Sean Skeehan. Over the coming weeks, to help highlight some of the many farmer-led learning opportunities this growing season — and the farmers hosting them […]
May 11, 2017
In a Nutshell
• Two farmers planted strips of flowering
herbs – anise hyssop, borage, and
lemon basil – with cash crops on their
farms. Pollinators in prairie strips were
• Farmers evaluated characteristics of
the herbs and assessed pollinator use
of the herbs by doing transect counts
of pollinators during bloom.
• Neither farm had successful direct
seedings of anise hyssop (McGary had
success with transplanting).
• Borage filled out and flowered earliest
though it became top-heavy, fell over,
and had late-season weed management
• Lemon basil (and anise hyssop, at Mc-
Gary’s) had healthy, upright habits but
required more early-season weeding
• Small native bees had the most individuals
counted among all pollinator
groups observed on both farms.
• Hartmann’s lemon basil had the most
pollinators; at McGary’s, borage had
the highest average count.
December 7, 2016
As concern about health gains headlines, farmers are looking at their own fields, curious if their farm practices and habitat offerings are supporting native pollinators. “We assume we have good diversification of pollinators on our farm but want to confirm that and learn about the variety of pollinators,” says Sean Skeehan of Blue Gate Farm. […]
March 5, 2015
This farminar is for farmers who like the idea of having beehives on their property, but aren’t sure if they are ready or willing to manage their own hives. Adam Ebert of Ebert Honey Company will talk about what it takes to keep your own bees, then discuss with Susan Yario and Cheryl Daman of Heartfelt Heirloom Farm their beehive-hosting arrangement. Adam will also discuss farmer questions and concerns, how to find a beekeeper in your area, and what to expect from and ask of your tenant beekeeper.
December 12, 2014
On Saturday, Aug. 3, a diverse crowd of about 50 people gathered outside the packing shed at Small Potatoes Farm, a 10-acre farm near Minburn owned by Rick and Stacy Hartmann, to hear about a particularly salient topic: protecting our native pollinators, and what farmers and landowners can do to support and provide habitat for […]
August 9, 2013
July 23, 2013