a history of domestic (American) agricultural policy

Although much of the original motivation to settle America was fueled by a divine imperative to 'go forth and conquer' in the name of God, domestic farm policy also played a large role in motivating both citizens and newly arrived immigrants to settle the lands of the vast unknown. This began in the 1800s when …

what are open-source seeds? why are open-source seeds important?

Perhaps you have heard the term open-source. Maybe you heard about it within the context of software and technology as the open-source movement originated within the software development community as a means to encourage innovation and knowledge sharing. As such, the open-source concept is best-known within the technological paradigm. However, the essence of open-source can …

covid-19 and our food system: the wake up call we need?

The whole world is dealing with the consequences of the novel coronavirus - everyone from the residents of European capitals to members of indigenous Amazonian tribes is feeling the effect. COVID-19 is the main topic of discussion and has been for a few months now and will continue to be for many months to come. …

the main challenges to alternative food networks

Alternative food networks (AFNs) aim to help connect food consumers with food producers in the hope that the resocialization of consumption will drive change within the food system. Such changes are generally geared towards promoting social and environmental sustainability. However, even with holistic intentions, alternative food networks [AFNs] are not without their challenges, limitations, and …

companion planting: fact or folklore

In recent years [and for generations among indigenous populations], companion planting has emerged as a common technique aimed at exploiting the benefits of the relationships between specific plants to naturally improve crop flavor, health, and vigor. More simply, companion planting is a type of polyculture where two plant species are grown together because it is …

an introduction to companion planting

All healthy ecosystems contain a complex system of microbes, insects, plants, and animals that interact to maintain balance and contribute to the well-being of a given space. Companion planting is a targeted effort to exploit the benefits of the relationships between specific plants to improve production vitality. More simply, companion planting is a specific type …

8 essential questions to ask before installing an irrigation system

Irrigation systems offer a variety of benefits.  They allow for the growth of a wider variety of crops.  They can be timed so that the hands-on portion of crop production is a little less cumbersome.  They protect crops from irregular and dry weather conditions.  They support leaching, which can remove harmful, crop-damaging salts within in …