News/Events - August 2013

Upcoming Farm Tour: Cooper's CSA Farm & Maze

Are you thinking of expanding your production cycles in order to attend more markets? Would you like to increase the number of shares in your CSA program? Have you ever considered agri-tourism as a potential source of farm income? If so, then join us at Cooper's CSA Farm & Maze on Sunday September 15, 2013, from 1:00-4:00pm for this informative farm business management tour.

Steve and Lisa Cooper have been farming together for close to 20 years. They currently run one of the largest CSA programs in the region (400+ members), so they have lots to teach growers who are interested in expanding their production. They also know a fair bit about marketing. Their buisness was grown from a single sweet corn stall to a farm servicing four regional farmers' markets in addition to their booming CSA program. They also run a 10 acre corn maze, which attracts close to 10,000 visitors to the farm each year, and a certified kitchen where they assemble prepared goods for their farmgate and webstores. To learn more about the Coopers, visit their fantastic new

Pre-registration is required as space is limited. $25/person, $35/farming pair (ie. business partners). Head to to complete a quick registration questionaire. For more information, or if you have difficulty with the online registration, please contact Jay Adam: - 705-743-7671



Lakefield Horticultural Society Native Pollinator Event

On Tuesday September 10, Sue Chan will be speaking to the Lakefield Horticultural Society about the environmental and economic impacts of declining populations of native pollinators. The event promises to be informative, engaging and fun, with a mini flower show and decorative competition scheduled for the evening as well.

Things kick off at 7:30pm at the Marshland Centre in Lakefield. For more information, visit, or call Anne at (705) 652-0046. 

New Growing Forward 2 Info Sessions Announced

OSCIA has just announced a number of new information sessions for producers and industry stakeholders who are interested in submitting applications for Capacity Building annd Project Implementation. The sessions will provide information on the areas of focus and criteria for both types of Cost-Share Assistance. Dates have been announced for the following areas across the region: 

  • Peterborough: August 28th, 9:30am - 11:30am 
  • Belleville: September 9th, 1:00pm - 3:00pm
  • Newmarket: September 13th, 10:00am - 12:00pm

For more information on the details of the program, head on over to the GF2 website. If you'd like to reserve a spot for yourself in one of the upcoming info sessions, head on over to the Registration Page

Natural Pest Control Workshop a Success!

Edit: Click The Photo Below to View More Workshop Pictures!

Farmers from east central Ontario gathered at Wheelbarrow Farm this past Sunday to learn about natural pest and disease control methods suitable for all scales of organic production. The instructor, Dr. Fulvio Gioanetto, began the day with a lecture on plant pathology, the detriments of conventional pest and disease controls, and the use of common perennial plants as bioindicators of soil health.

Dr. Gioanetto stressed the importance of not forcing farmlands into cropping systems for which they are not well suited. Instead, he urged the group to become better at observing the individual characteristics of our farmlands, to see them as complex, interconnected systems. If farmers can train themselves to better observe what their properties tell them through the presence (or absence) of native perennials and soil types, then farms and crops will be healthier as a result.  

Once attuned to what their lands tell them, Dr. Gioanetto argued that farmers will also be able to utilize their properties’ pervasive weeds and minerals advantageously. One such way of doing so is through simple decoctions of plant-based chemicals found throughout the farm. With simple ingredients like sunflower oil or high-proof alcohol, mixed with common perennials from around the farm, sprays can be created to control disease and pests.

After a thorough and hands-on tour of the plants prevalent in the Wheelbarrow fields, Dr. Gioanetto illustrated the steps involved in creating simple, organic solutions that could be used to control the farm’s persistent pests and diseases. Equipped with this knowledge and a simple backpack sprayer, it was impressed upon the group that even the most stubborn and problematic pests could be easily and organically managed, without the use of persistent and harmful chemicals.

We’d like to thank the folks at Plan B Organic Farms for partnering with us on this informative event, as well as the crew at Wheelbarrow Farm for hosting and providing a delicious lunch. We’re also grateful for the support of the Ontario Trillium Foundation, the Career Focus Program, as well as the CFDC in all the work that we do. Stay tuned for an updated schedule of fall programming, coming soon to a farm near you!

New Funding Announced for Farm Projects!

The Ontario Soil and Crop Improvement Association has just announced updated funding through the Species at Risk Farm Incetive Program (SARFIP) available to farmers across the province. The program offers substantial cost-share towards the establishment of Best Management Practices (BMP) on SARFIP eligible projects on croplands, grasslands, riparian areas, wetlands, or even woodlands. You must have an Environmental Farm Plan to qualify. A free workshop is available in October near Belleville. Click here to register

Head to the link below for details of funding available for on-farm habitat-related projects.

Contact Farms at Work or any of the partners of the Kawartha Farm Stewardship Collaborative for more information on additional funding and technical assistance.