BURLINGTON, Vt. — As part of the 2019 Summer Organic Dairy Series, the University of Vermont Extension Northwest Crops and Soils Program will sponsor free workshops in Vermont, New York and New Hampshire beginning in July.
UVM Extension agronomist Heather Darby and Sarah Flack, a livestock production consultant from Fairfield, will lead pasture walks at three farms with grass-fed dairy herds to discuss various topics of interest to organic dairy producers.
Dates, topics and locations are as follows:
• July 11 — Production and Land Reclamation, Evermint Dairy, Constable, New York. This walk will focus on grass-fed dairy production and strategies for land reclamation and improvement. Owner Lawrence Horst will share ways he maximizes forage production and quality through both annual and perennial forages and by reclaiming and improving pastures and hay meadows on his northern New York farm.
• Aug. 12 — Overcoming Dairy Production Challenges, Brookfield Farm, Walpole, New Hampshire. Producers will explore ways to deal with grass-fed dairy production challenges. They also will hear from owners Chris and Holly Gowdy who manage a seasonal grass-fed dairy herd with late summer calving, which allows them to focus on producing high quality first-cut hay and align pasture productivity with herd demand.
• Aug. 28 — Dairy and Forage Production and Nutrient Management, Choiniere Family Farm, Highgate Center, Vermont. The walk, hosted by Guy Choiniere, will include a farm tour and discussion of soil fertility and nutrient management, forage production and quality and grass-fed dairy production, among other topics. Choiniere will describe how he manages soil fertility and health on his fourth-generation certified-organic dairy farm to support forage and animal productivity and quality.
These workshops are part of a series of on-farm workshops for organic dairy farmers coordinated by UVM Extension, Organic Valley and the Northeast Organic Farming Association of Vermont.
The workshops are free, but registration is appreciated.
Source: UVM Extension.