The University of Vermont (UVM) Extension's Northwest Crops and Soils Team has a number of conferences and informational meetings planned for March. Dairy producers, grain growers and other farmers are encouraged to save the dates for the following:
March 1: Vermont Organic Dairy Producers Conference, Vermont Technical College, Randolph Center, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. This conference, sponsored by UVM Extension and the Northeast Organic Farming Association of Vermont, will focus on managing organic dairies in the face of rising feed costs and weather extremes. Keynote addresses will cover transitioning to certified organic production, building soil fertility, pasture irrigation and other drought management techniques. Producers will get updates on recent organic dairy research and hear about feeding molasses and growing and feeding annual forages to enhance and extend the grazing season.
March 12: Northwest Crop, Soil and Dairy Meeting, American Legion Hall, St. Albans, 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Guest speakers include dairy nutritionist Dr. Randy Shaver, University of Wisconsin, speaking on the latest research in growing and feeding corn silage, earlage and snaplage, and agronomist Dr. Greg Roth, Pennsylvania State University, on a new cover crop interseeder developed at Penn State. Other topics include strategies for alleviating and reducing soil compaction and UVM research updates on perennial grass variety trials and cover crops for winter feed.
March 14: Ninth Annual Grains Conference, Essex Resort and Spa, Essex, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Conference highlights include keynote talks by St. Catherine University emeritus professor Dr. Julie Miller Jones on facts and fads regarding wheat and weight gain and Washington State's Dr. Stephen Jones on bringing small grains production back to the Northeast. Growers will also learn about building soil health with cover crops and soil amendments, building rations for livestock feed, small-scale grain production and processing, baking with local grains and more.
March 19: Oilseed Producers Meeting, Comfort Inn and Suites at Maplewood, Montpelier, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Farmers interested in producing oilseeds, biodiesel or culinary oil products on their farm can learn about growing and processing oilseed crops. The program will include a farmer roundtable discussion, presentations on using oilseed meal as livestock feed, bird control methods and different small-scale oil presses and updates on crop production, pest management and food-grade oil research.
For information, call 802-524-6501 or toll-free at 800-639-2130 to speak with Heather Darby or Susan Brouillette.