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Green Thumb – Gardening on the Internet

This web has more than spiders. Sometimes when I search for information on the Internet I feel like I’ve jumped into a landfill. Where should I begin to dig? With next year’s gardening season in mind, I recently searched for “lettuce” on Google. It came up with 80,500,000 results in 0.7 seconds.  ...read more

Around the Farm – Everything Old is New Again

Magnolia. The Pioneer Woman. Fixer Upper. What do all these things have in common? They’re all about bringing decor, food, and homes back to their roots. Stop and think about it for a moment... Farmhouse style and rustic decor has made their way into homes even off the farm (thank you, Joanna Gaines). ...read more

Stray Kernels – Embracing the Gap

Soon after Breanna Holbert, the 2017-2018 National FFA President, gave her retiring address at the National FFA Convention in October, the video link was posted online. And then it was shared, widely. Upon seeing the link over and over again in my social media feed, I thought, “Wow. This must ...read more

Stray Kernels – Revisiting Our Objectives

I had a stickler of an elementary education professor in college. The most memorable feature I can recall from her courses (aside from failing a case-study assignment—it’s a long story) is how strict she was about our lesson plans. I remember hating having to write them because she insisted on ...read more

Around the Farm – How a Smartphone Changed the Way I Farm

When my dad was learning to farm, he gathered information from the generations who had farmed before him. Learning from experienced farmers is crucial, but it is also a slow process. One generation learns something new and passes it to the next. So, how does a smartphone change that? It’s simple, ...read more

Green Thumb – Fall Checklist

As we enter September and October, we look forward to harvest and a beautiful fall season. We must also realize that during these two months there will be work ahead as we close up our home gardens and landscapes for the winter. September is the prime time to plant trees. Trees for ...read more

Around the Farm – Balancing Farm & Family

Like most of you, I have had to learn how to balance work and family. My wife and I have two young boys who are growing faster than weeds and I don’t want to miss a second of it! As a farmer whose hours are roughly sun-up to sun-down plus a ...read more

Stray Kernels – Fear of the Unknown

When I was 5 or 6 years old, I was afraid of sirens. So much so that hearing one made me tremble and worry. I’m not sure why, but my guess is that I learned from TV that sirens always meant something very bad had happened. So when I heard a ...read more

Green Thumb – Spotlight on Ornamental Grasses

If you are an ornamental grass, you need to practice the fine art of patience. While summer gardens are full of blooming flowers, ornamental grasses remain in the background, quietly and discreetly, growing and waiting their turn. In late August and early September, the role reversal begins. Summer flowering plants are ...read more

Stray Kernels – Belief bias, declinism and groupthink, oh my!

I was planning for an educator workshop titled, “Thinking Critically about Food, Farming, and Sustainability.” I had a vague notion we could explore how our food choices connect to what happens on farms, and how to critically evaluate sources of information about food. The workshop date grew near and it was ...read more