November 2017
Your Monthly News & Updates
cattle pricing First Annual Cattlemen's College
November 17-18, 2017
Wells Conference Center
University of Maine
Orono, ME
The Maine Cattlemen's College will provide up-to-date information to Maine beef cattle producers and allow Maine beef cattle producers an opportunity to meet leaders in the industry and fellow producers to share ideas and innovations. All proceeds to benefit Maine Beef Producers Association Scholarship Fund.  Who should attend: Beef cattle producers and farmers interested in keeping beef animals.


  • November 17, Prime Rib Dinner: $35 per person. Please RSVP by November 10 to Melissa Libby at 207.581.2788 or Minimum number of registrants: 15.
  • November 18, Cattlemen's College: $25 for Member of MBPA/MOFGA or $35 for non-members. Breakfast, snacks, and lunch provided. 

Register online

pricing excel Farm Excel (TM) Training 
Red Barn

For farmers who want to learn more about using Microsoft  Excel  spreadsheets in their businesses, University of Maine Cooperative Extension is offering a Farm  Excel Training from 4:30-6:30 p.m. Nov. 29 and Dec. 6 at the Penobscot County office,  307 Maine Ave., Bangor. The workshop, for farmers with some experience using the program, will introduce key components of  Excel  used to track farm financial income and expenses, as well as production information. The second session will introduce the Maine Farm Account Book template and its use within  Excel . The course is free; preregistration is required. Enrollment is limited to 20.  Register online. For more information or to request a disability accommodation, contact the Penobscot County Extension office,  207.942.7396800.287.1485 (in Maine); or

 recipeRecipe to Market: Is It for ME?
Photo: Remsberg.

University of Maine Cooperative Extension is offering a workshop for people considering a small-scale food business from  9 a.m.-noon  Dec. 14 (snow date  Dec. 15), at the UMaine Extension office, 165 East Main Street, Dover-Foxcroft. 
 "Recipe to Market: Is It for Me?" will introduce key components of starting a successful food business, including the fundamentals of entrepreneurship, product development, licensing and regulations, and food safety concerns. The course is free to Piscataquis County residents, $10 otherwise; 
online registration is required ( For more information or to request a disability accommodation, contact 207.564.3301,  800.287.1491 (in Maine); 
soil Maine Soil Health Workshop

Tuesday, December 5th, 9:45am-2:45pm
Governors Restaurant, 376 Maine St., Waterville (I-95 Exit 130)
See below for topics and speakers.
Pre-registration is required .
Cost (includes morning snack and lunch): $20 if register by November 29; otherwise $25.
Note: No refunds will be offered for registrations made by check OR after November 29.
Registrations received after November 29 cannot be guaranteed a lunch.
or, to register by phone and for registration questions, contact Michele Lodgek at 207.581.2721 or
Topics and speakers (agenda attached):
No-till and Cover Cropping in Corn - The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly  (Rick Kersbergen, UMaine Extension)
Benefits, Challenges, and Techniques for Cover Cropping in No-till Corn  (Bob Fogler, Stoneyvale Farm)
Reducing Tillage in Vegetable Production - permanent beds, tarping, zone till and more  (Natalie Lounsbury, Univ of New Hampshire, and Mark Hutton, UMaine Extension)
Cover Crop Mixes  (Jason Lilley, UMaine Extension and Carl Johanson, Goranson Farm)
For questions about the conference, contact Ellen Mallory at or 207.581.2942.

interestItems of Interest
Grants & Loans
  • Northeast SARE Farmer GrantsFarmer Grants are for commercial producers who have an innovative idea they want to test using a field trial, on-farm demonstration, marketing initiative, or other technique. A technical advisor--often an extension agent, crop consultant, or other service professional--must also be involved. Projects should seek results other farmers can use, and all projects must have the potential to add to our knowledge about effective sustainable practices. Deadline: Dec. 5, 2017. 
  • Organic Farming Research Foundation grant proposals deadline is Dec. 15. Their priority issues are soil health, innovative weed control, management of emerging insect and disease issues and livestock health. 
  • Value Added Producer Grant  and matching funds can be used for planning activities or for working capital expenses related to producing and marketing a value-added agricultural product. FMI   Click Here.   There is also a webinar called  "VAPG 101" and contains great information on how the program will be administered. Here is the link.
  • Rural Rehabilitation Trust Fund has a loan program to help beef producers purchase breeding stock or feeder cattle.  
  • FSA Microloan Program: The focus of Microloans (up to $50,000) is on the financing needs of small, beginning farmer, niche and non-traditional farm operations, such as truck farms, farms participating in direct marketing and sales such as farmers' markets, CSA's (Community Supported Agriculture), restaurants and grocery stores, or those using hydroponic, aquaponic, organic and vertical growing methods.
resourcesFeatured Resources

Growing Magazine offers a free digital version of their magazine for produce farmers. 

Maine Balsam Fir Tips: A Sustainable HarvestUniversity of Maine Cooperative Extension talks about how to properly identify and harvest Maine Balsam Fir tips.
Purchasing and Maintaining a Used Tractor by Penn State University.

Visit the UMaine Extension online  Publications Catalog for agriculture information, such as: 
Balsam Fir Tip Gathering #7011 The demand for balsam fir wreaths has risen over the years. This bulletin covers basic tip gathering. Includes drawings to help you identify high quality balsam fir tips and remove and stack tips effectively. 4 pages. © 1991, 2008, 2017 by University of Maine Cooperative Extension. Download it for free or buy a color copy for $0.75.
Making Balsam Wreaths #7012 This fact sheet includes instructions and 11 drawings to lead you through wreath construction step by step. Includes a materials list. © 1991, 2008 by University of Maine Cooperative Extension.  Download it for free or  buy a color copy.

eventsUpcoming Events
  • November 17 & 18, 2017 Cattlemen's College, Wells Commons, University of Maine, Orono. This program will provide up-to-date information to Maine beef cattle producers and allow Maine beef cattle producers an opportunity to meet leaders in the industry and fellow producers to share ideas and innovations. Sponsored by UMaine Extension, Maine Dept of Agriculture, Conservation & Forestry, and Maine Beef Producers Association. 
  • Nov. 19, Dec. 13, 2017 and Jan. 8 & 24, Feb. 7 & 21, 2018  NxLevel (TM) Tilling the Soil of Opportunity, 9 am - 3:30 pm, at KVCC, Fairfield, a business planning course tailored for Maine farmers sponsored by the Maine Dept of Ag, Conservation and Forestry, Maine Farms for the Future and FarmSmart Business Services. 
  • November 29 and December 6, 2017 Excel for Farmers, This is a free program, but space is limited. 4:30 pm to 6: 30 pm, Penobscot Extension Office, Bangor. Pre-registration online.
  • December 4, 2017  3rd Annual Farmland Access ConferenceAugusta Civic Center, 76 Community Dr., Augusta, Maine. Join co-hosts Land For Good & Maine Farmland Trust, fellow farmers and colleagues from around New England for a day of discussion and practical information on the challenges of farmland access, transfer and succession, and the ways we can address those challenges together. Registration opens October 25. FMI: contact Erica Buswell:
  • December 5, 2017, Maine Soil Health Workshop, 9:45 am to 2:45 pm, Governor's Restaurant, Waterville, $20 fee includes lunch. Pre-registration required. 
  • December 6, 2017 2017 Potato Pest Management Conference  at the Presque Isle Inn and Convention Center located on US Route #1 in Presque Isle. The program will begin at 9 am,  with registration opening at 8:30 am. FMI contact or phone 207.764.3361.
  • December 7, 2017  Kitchen Licensing Workshop.   10 a.m. to 4 p.m. , MOFGA's Common Ground Education Center, Unity. (Snow date  December 8 .) Designed for farmers and others interested in home-food processing for resale. $50 (includes lunch); $35 for MOFGA members. 
  • December 12 - 14, 2017 New England Vegetable and Fruit Conference and Trade Show at the Radisson Hotel in Manchester, NH and will include 32 educational sessions over 3 days, covering major vegetable, berry and tree fruit crops, as well as various special topics, such as hard cider and cut flower production. Additional information on the New England Vegetable and Fruit Conference, including on-line and downloadable registration material, may be found at
  • January 9 - 11, 2018 Maine Agricultural Trades Show, Augusta Civic Center. 
  • January 22 & 23, 2018   Save the Date: Flowering in the North, A Flower Grower's Conference  for sharing knowledge about Zone 5 growing, wholesaling, retailing, and designing with Farm Fresh Flowers. The conference will take place  in the East Bayside neighborhood of Portland, ME. This events is a collaboration between the Association of Specialty Cut Flower Growers, MOFGA, and UMaine Cooperative Extension.
  • March 17, 2018 Grazing Conference
  • March 21 to 25, 2018 Maine Flower Show, Thompson's Point, Portland.
  • May 19, 2018 Northeast Livestock Expo Windsor Fair Grounds, Winsor

The Greenhouse Research & Extension Program at UConn is organizing two workshops on greenhouse vegetables. The second workshop on (Dec. 9) is intended for experienced growers who would like to improve their production practices in hydroponic or soilless systems.  Both workshops will take place at UConn-Storrs.  These workshops are co-sponsored by: UConn CAHNR,  The Connecticut Department of Agriculture  via the Specialty Crop Block Grant Project # AG151260,  and  The Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station .
  For more information go to:

subscription  Newsletter Subscription Information
The Central Maine Farming Newsletter (CMFN), now received by over 875 readers, has been offered as an educational resource by the University of Maine Cooperative Extension for over 10 years.  On January 1, 2015 the CMFN transitioned to electronic-only delivery. There is still three ways to receive the CMFN from your local UMaine Extension:

1) Central Maine Farming Newsletter remains available online for free! You can sign up to receive the newsletter through your email or view the archived issues anytime at If you currently do not have an email, you can get one for free from several email hosts. If you do not have a computer, community libraries have computers for you to use to access information on the Internet and to view your email.
2) Those with no email can opt to pay an annual subscription to receive the newsletters monthly for $15/year by contacting your County office. 
 3) A third option is to come into the Piscataquis, Penobscot or Waldo County Extension Offices and pick up a free printed copy of the newsletter.
We appreciate our readers referring others to the newsletter, and sharing it with their family and friends.   Thank you for your continued support of the CMFN, providing valuable agricultural information from Extension for folks in the central Maine area since 2003.

The University of Maine Cooperative Extension is the major educational outreach program of the University of Maine with offices statewide. UMaine Extension provides Maine people with research-based educational programs to help them live fuller, more productive lives.
Mention or display of a trademark, proprietary product, or firm in text or figures does not constitute an endorsement and does not imply approval to the exclusion of other suitable products or firms.
quick  Quick Links  
Donna Coffin, Extension Educator
Rick Kersbergen, Extension Educator
The goal of the Central Maine Farming Newsletter is to provide timely information on the production and marketing of crops and livestock grown in central Maine.
T he University of Maine does not discriminate on the grounds of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, including transgender status and gender expression, national origin, citizenship status, age, disability, genetic information or veteran status in employment, education, and all other programs and activities. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding non-discrimination policies: Director, Office of Equal Opportunity, 101 North Stevens Hall, 207.581.1226.
Photos: Donna Coffin unless indicated otherwise. 

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Penobscot Office - website 
Open Monday - Friday
8 am to 4:30 pm
307 Maine Ave. Bangor, ME  04401  207-942-7396 or 800-287-1485
Piscataquis Office  - website 
Open Monday, Thursday, Friday
8 am to 4:30 pm,
Open By-chance on Wednesday , Closed Tuesday 
165 East Main St. Dover-Foxcroft, ME  04426  207-564-3301 or 800-287-1491 
Waldo Office  - website 
Open Monday - Friday
8 am to 4:30 pm 
992 Waterville Road, Waldo, ME 04915-3117 Phone: 207.342.5971 or 800.287.1426 (in Maine)