May 14, 2021
MOSES heads back to farms for summer, fall field days
After a year of virtual events, the Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service, also known as MOSES, is heading back out to farms to showcase organic farming practices.
Farmers attending these field days will be asked to follow current public health safety guidelines in place at the time of each field day. Since the first event at Mhonpaj’s Garden is in a high tunnel, it will be offered online only. Register for any of these field days at mosesorganic.org/organic-field-days or call the Organic Answer Line at 888-90-MOSES.
June 2 | 2 – 3:30 p.m.| Online
Take a virtual tour of the newly constructed high tunnel at Mhonpaj’s Garden, the first farm in the Hmong community in Minnesota to be certified organic. MOSES Organic Specialist Mhonpaj Lee offers tips on high tunnel selection, building, and vegetable production in a protected environment.
Organic Row Crops plus Prairie Restoration
July 22 | 8:30 a.m. – 1 p.m.| Johnson Farms | Madison, South Dakota
The Johnsons showcase what it takes to grow large-acreage row crops organically. They will explain their crop rotations and other organic practices, addressing concerns such as weed control, fertility, grain storage, marketing, and more. South Dakota State University researcher Melanie Caffe will highlight oat trials the university has been running at the farm. The multi-year research project is focused on identifying breeding lines and varieties best suited to organic production. In addition, farmer Tracy Rosenberg will talk about how she’s restoring grasslands on her 950-acre ranch to native prairie.
Creative Land Access and No-Till Vegetable Research
July 31 | 2 p.m. – 5 p.m.| Humble Hands Harvest | Decorah, Iowa
2021 Changemaker Hannah Breckbill and her farm partner, Emily Fagan, grow perennial crops and organic vegetables and raise grass-fed lamb and pastured pork. Learn about their research on a no-till organic vegetable system, rotational grazing, perennial crops, and the cooperative business model and community engagement driving the young farm’s success.
Medicinal Herb Production
August 7 | Noon – 4 p.m.| Four Elements Organic Herbals | North Freedom, Wisconsin
The 2020 MOSES Organic Farmers of the Year, Jane Hawley Stevens and David Stevens, have been growing organic herbs on their 130-acre farm for the past 32 years and have developed a thriving business making herbal wellness products. Tour the farm and learn how they plant, grow, harvest, dry, and pack their medicinal herbs.
Systems Approach to Organic Farming
August 18 | 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.| Cala Farm Origenes | Turtle Lake, Wisconsin
Rodrigo Cala, one of the new community organic specialists with MOSES, grows certified organic produce, raises pastured chickens using the Tree Range® system, and rotationally grazes Katahdin hair sheep. He’ll explain the systems approach he uses on his organic farm and strategies for weed management and soil fertility.
Silvopasture for Livestock & Pollinators
August 21 | 9 a.m. – Noon | Mary Dirty Face Farm | Menomonie, Wisconsin
MOSES Organic Specialist Rachel Henderson and her husband, Anton Ptak, have a mixed-fruit orchard and raise diverse livestock, including hogs, chickens, lamb, and custom-grazed cattle. They recently planted tree strips that provide forage and shade for livestock while supporting pollinators for the orchard. Learn about species selection, planting, and weed management for these silviculture strips as well as habitat considerations for livestock and pollinators.
Sustainability through Community Engagement with the Land
September 18 | 11 a.m. – 1 p.m.| Sustain DuPage | Wheaton, Illinois
2021 Changemaker Sustain DuPage is an educational nonprofit that promotes sustainability and community in the Chicago suburbs through an educational organic garden and grass-roots projects. Four project organizers will explain how their related projects engage and connect their community to local foods and the land.
Winter Vegetable Production in Missouri
October 4 | 9 a.m. – Noon | Happy Hollow Farm | Jamestown, Missouri
2021 MOSES Organic Farmer of the Year Liz Graznak grows certified organic produce and flowers. She shares how she scaled up production and infrastructure to offer organic produce year-round. She’ll cover fall crop harvesting and storage, winter production in high tunnels and caterpillar tunnels, and how she designed her ideal wash/pack shed.
Above, Charlie Johnson (Madison, South Dakota) talks to farmers at his farm tour in 2019. MOSES will head back to Johnson Farms and other farms in the Midwest for in-person field days this season. Photo: Chuck Anderas