July 19,  2016
In this Weekly Harvest:     
We know from talking to our network of experts that becoming an organic farmer is not a matter of simply swapping in new inputs or popping a cultivator onto the tractor. It requires a different way of thinking. But how does one develop this new approach?

Our workshop on July 28 at Goldmine Farms, in Pana, Illinois tackles this idea head-on. The first of our 4-part series on managing risk in organic grain farming, we will open with a presentation by Dave Bishop of PrairiErth Farm, who emphasizes how "organic farmers need to focus on diversity in every way". Then Gary McDonald, an organic farming consultant, will discuss how farmers need to assess themselves and develop thorough field plans, which will lead to a presentation on organic systems plans, led by Harriet Behar of the Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service.

After a catered lunch, farm owner Jack Erisman will discuss how to assess your land resources before taking us on a tour of his fields that will include examples of his multi-year rotations and his perennial grain plots. All of this will help you manage risk as you develop your organic farming systems, and it costs just $25. More information and registration can be found here.
Market Corner

We've got a delicious array of local produce, grains, treats, and flowers (plus wild Alaskan salmon!) lined up for you this afternoon. 

This weeks marks Sitka Salmon Share's last market until mid-August, so be sure to stop by and stock up!

RSVP to our Facebook event page to get vendor updates and share your market experience.

Be sure to stop by the Sampling Tent for a taste of the market as you shop! Today we're featuring gooey butter cake, honey-glazed veggies, and our special (non-alcoholic) Bloody Mary blend to try before you buy.

Here's the quick rundown:
  • Peaches
  • Blueberries
  • Zucchini
  • Plums
  • Green beans
  • Wax beans
  • Sweet corn
  • Raspberries
  • Tomatoes
  • Peppers 
  • Summer squash
  • Currants
  • Cucumbers
  • Eggplant
  • Kale
  • Head lettuce
  • Romaine heads
  • Swiss chard
  • Spinach
  • Collard greens
  • Mustard greens
  • Cabbage
  • Turnips
  • Wild Alaskan salmon
  • New potatoes 
  • Pattypan squash
  • Scallions
  • Radishes
  • Cauliflower
  • Fresh herbs  
  • Currants
  • Dried herbs
  • Fresh herbs
  • Mixed bouquets
  • Sunflowers
  • Popsicles
  • Bread
  • Scones
  • Cakes
  • Pastries
  • Flour
  • Oats
  • Cornmeal
  • Buckwheat
  • Wheatberries
  • Granola
  • Popcorn
  • Pancake mix
We're very happy to welcome yet another new vendor into the Champaign Farmers' Market family: Okaw Valley Orchard. Travelling up from Sullivan, IL, they'll be bringing peaches, apple crisp cider donuts, apple cider pints, and apple cider sippers for the kids.

Stone Court Farm will have black currants, the very last red gooseberries, rose hips, fresh herbs (including mint, tarragon, sage, and lemon verbena), and "Principe Borghese" salad tomatoes. (And who can pass up an Italian prince?!)

Pheasant Ridge Farm of Urbana is bringing the variety, whether it be tomatoes (heirloom, slicers and sungolds), peppers (bells, sweet mini bells, anaheim, poblano, havasu, jalapenos, habaneros), onions (white and walla walla) or summer squash (yellow, zucchini, patty pan). They'll also have  leeks, cucumbers, lemon cucumbers, green cabbage, eggplant and more.

Meyer Produce will have loads of fruit: from peaches and plums, to blackberries and strawberries, and even cantaloupe. They'll also have tomatoes (regular and cherry), a slew of peppers, zucchini, cucumbers, kohlrabi, red and yellow candy onions, shallots, yellow wax beans, new potatoes, and sweet potatoes.

Maddox Sweet Corn farm will have their famed titular product, as well as tomatoes and green beans. And Joy of Illinois Farm will be bringing zucchini bread, garlic, beets, cookies, cinnamon pecan rolls, epazote, basil, and parsley.

We'll also be joined by Community Elements in our Community Tent; stop by and learn about all the great work they do in Champaign-Urbana. We'll also be featuring an enclosed hive demonstration by Arvin Pierce of AC Bees Apiaries. Don't worry, the bees are completely secure, so you can get up close and see where our honey comes from!

As always, the Champaign Farmers' Market accepts Link, and we'll double your benefits up to $20 each week .

All this and more from 4-7 this afternoon. Come enjoy yet another gorgeous afternoon with us at the Market and load up on fresh local food!
farmfnFarm Fresh Now! Recipe of the Week

Arugula Mint Dressing
Dress it up! Arugula, a spicy green-leafy herb can not only be used as the base of your salad, but can also be blended up to make the dressing or a pesto. It is also a wonderful pizza topping (add it after the pizza is cooked)--and don't forget the flowers, you can eat those too, and they are a beautiful addition to your salad. Like a lot of greens, you get a lot of nutrition packed into those leaves, and they are available almost year-round, even in places like Illinois that have harsh winters.

Visit us at the market today to pick up your free recipe card and nutrition card! Find all of our Farm Fresh Now! recipes on our website!

WorkshopsWorkshops, Field Days, and Grant Opportunities

Managing Risk in Organic Grain Farming - Workshop Series
This series of workshops is designed to help you manage risk in organic grain production, marketing, and financing. There will be four workshops starting on J uly 28 and going through February. Each workshop costs $25 to register, or $75 to register for all four. Learn more about the workshops and register here.

Farm Dreams
Farm Dreams is our annual workshop series for aspiring farmers like you to discover what it would really take to start your own farm business. From assessing your skills and resources, to meeting successful farmers in your region, to deciding next steps for pursuing your farm dream, this workshop is the perfect setting for you to find out what it takes to own a successful farm business.  Each workshop is from 5:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m and is held on a working farm. Registration costs $20 and includes a light supper and the Farm Dreams Handbook. Sign up now!

Central Illinois Farm Beginnings
Classes start October 22
Applications are open for our year-long farmer training program. Now entering its 12th year of creating successful farm businesses, Central Illinois Farm Beginnings (CIFB) gives aspiring farmers the opportunity to write a plan for the development of their farm business over the course of nine winter classes and with the guidance of expert farmers from the region. After the completion of the coursework, students are matched with a mentor farmer as they begin their first year of production. Scholarships are available for this course and now is the time to apply! Learn more and apply online here!


International Leaders in Urban Ag Award
August 15
INUAg is now accepting submissions for the 2016 Leaders in Urban Agriculture Awards. 
Awards will be presented for 1st ($1,000), 2nd ($700), and 3rd place ($300) in each of the following categories to urban farming projects building better food systems around the world:
1. Educating Communities: Projects that empower youth, students, or community members to grow food in urban settings

2. Food Justice: Projects that use urban agriculture to improve access to fresh food in underserved communities

3. Innovation: Ideas or products that improve the viability of urban farming

Field Day at Vulcan Farm
July 24, 1:00 pm
1123 CR 2300 E, Sidney IL
See hundreds of varieties of over 50 perennial crops, plus establishment technique trials for seedling-stage silvopasture with sheep. Free and open to public. For more information, and to register, click here

Feast on the Farm - A farmer, a baker, a brewer, and a chef
August 6
Hazzard Free Farms  
Feast on the Farm at Hazzard Free Farms takes guests on a tour of the sprawling farms old barns along a beautiful creek before settling in for a three-course meal curated by Found's Nicole Pederson and Hewn's Ellen King, paired with craft brews specially forged just for the event by Claudia Jendron (Temperance Beer Company). T his event will feature not only some amazing food and drink but also a tour of our rare grains nursery which should be in full bloom at the time of the event. 
2016 DeKalb County Farm Stroll
July 24
University of Illinois Extension DeKalb County has organized a free, family-friendly event called the DeKalb County Farm Stroll. It is a self-guided tour of 11 diversified family farms and one agricultural museum in DeKalb County held on Sunday, July 24th from noon-5pm. The farms participating in this year's Farm Stroll are detailed below. There will be farm tours, demonstrations and of course fresh local food sampling and sales. While the Stroll is a free event, bring some cash to purchase food or other items at the farms. Learn more and register here.

Farmers Market Fresh Cooking Classes
June - August
Illinois Stewardship Alliance
Classes will be held the second weekend of the month in June, July and August and will feature fresh, seasonal produce from Springfield's Old Capitol Farmers Market. Limit of 10 students per class, so please register early. 
For kids cooking classes, parents may drop off or stay in Copper Pot's waiting room while kids enjoy their cooking class.
1 hour cooking classes, kids age 3-5 - $12 (includes all supplies and snack)
1.5 hour cooking class, kids age 6-12 - $20 (includes all supplies and light meal)
2 hour cooking class, Adults, $30 (includes light meal and/or take home food)

Local Flavors Dinners
July 21st: Big Grove Tavern
August 18th: Bacaro
September 15th: V. Picasso
October 20th:Timpone's Restaurant

July 21st: Lunch at Kelly's Bakery and Cafe
August 18th: Lunch at BraiZe
September 15th: Dinner at Destihl Restaurant and Brew Works
October 20th: Dinner at Anju Above

July 21st: Dinner at Driftwood Cocktail and Eatery
August 18th: Dinner at Augie's Front Burner
September 15th: Dinner at Engrained Brewing Company
October 20th: Dinner at American Harvest

July 21st: Lunch at Midnight Espresso
August 18th: Lunch at Cyd's Gourmet Kitchen, Cafe + Catering
September 15th: Dinner at Hearth Restaurant
October 20th: TBD
Now you can find farm-fresh meals at your favorite restaurants during the Local Flavors 2016 farm-to-table restaurant series. Local Flavors and dinners will be held on the third  Thursday of each month, June through October in Champaign, Springfield, Bloomington-Normal, and Peoria.  Stop by any participating restaurant on their scheduled date during their regular business hours. Each restaurant will prepare a Local Flavor Menu of three or more items featuring ingredients sourced directly from central Illinois farmers.
The series opens new markets for small farmers; highlights restaurants with a commitment to sourcing locally; and gives YOU a chance to support local farmers, local restaurants, and sustainable farming while savoring the finest flavors of central Illinois. Learn more here!
As I work through these final few days that I will be employed at The Land Connection, I can't help but look back over the last two years with pride and awe at what we as an organization have accomplished.

In 2013, when I was an intern at this organization, we worked in a shared office space, in a cramped back room with three laptops perched precariously on two desks...The other intern, Amanda and I were also just getting started in building TLC's social media platforms and tracking their growth. Emma Lincoln, a dear friend of the organization, was working with Cara to teach our Farm Dreams workshops and our yearly Central Illinois Farm Beginnings course. I didn't know the organization well enough to know it back then, but we were bare-bones and struggling...

agnews Agriculture in the News:
Something you should know
It may be more difficult to purchase sustainably-raised meat thanks to the transatlantic trade investment partnership. Find out why here. 
Something you should do
Learn how to make perfectly straight crop rows all by yourself! Click here for more.

Something to be happy about
As wheat becomes more popular int he local food movement, small farms will be able to profit from producing grains on a small scale.  Read more about it here.

You can post your ad or search for more listings in the  classifieds section  o f our website. To have something listed in the Weekly Harvest, email us at or call 217-840-2128.

Employment Opportunities:

Mint Creek Farm is a 230 acre, Certified Organic, grass-fed livestock farm located about 80 miles south of Chicago. We have a wide diversity of livestock including sheep, cattle, goats, pigs, chickens, ducks and seasonal turkeys. 
We are seeking farm crew members to start immediately that have at least 1 year of experience on a farm. This is a paid, full-time position with room and board available. Come learn and gain an understanding of how to raise livestock and poultry organically on pasture. If you're thinking of starting your own farm, there is no substitute for hands-on experience like what you will receive here. If you're wondering whether farming is right for you or just want to see what life on an organic livestock farm is like, we would love to have you. 
Knowledge of farm equipment, mechanical work and/or animal care is helpful and a great attitude is a must. For more information and to apply, contact Julie Larson at

Do you want to farm?  Do you have land but not the skills to tend to it?  Have you wondered what it would be like to spend a summer growing food for a community surrounding a farm?
Our apprenticeship is designed to give individuals with the desire to farm and grow food an opportunity to do that on a production scale to make a living.  We offer housing & monthly stipend in exchange for a full season commitment. 

We raise mixed produce for CSA, farmer's markets and wholesale customers.  We'll work side-by-side from seed to sale in hopes that you finish the season with a solid grasp of what it takes to run a small farm. Interns are expected to work quickly and efficiently in good and bad weather, to ask questions, and to learn from mistakes. Stipend starting @ $800/month and food from the farm as well as shared housing for the right candidate.
Full-time and part-time positions available. Contact Dylan at or click here for more information!

Searching for an intern/farm hand to help with jobs around the farm.  Pay will depend upon experience.  Will include a variety of jobs, everything from animal care, farm maintenance, garden work/produce care, etc.  Must have valid Driver's license.  Hours will vary seasonally. 
Contact Stan Schutte at Triple S Farms at 217-343-4740 or send resume to

We are hiring for farm hands. This is part-time work starting in May or June running into December. You would be doing all kinds of manual labor: harvesting, weeding, washing, occasional transplanting and general cleanup. The benefits are hard to beat: lots of produce, exercise, and interesting people to talk to. No experience needed. For an application, visit our website. Please fill it out and send to:

This is a part-time job opportunity to work with Jones Country Gardens of Pontiac, Illinois. One day per week the employee will work in a group setting for the duration of Urbana's Market at the Square 2016. The Farmers' Market Sales Associate will gain experience operating a farmers' market stand at one of the oldest and busiest farmers' markets in the State of Illinois. The position will involve a high level of engagement with coworkers and customers in the midst of the hustle-and-bustle of the farmers' market.

I n collaboration with the Produce Manager and other staff, the Farmers' Market Sales Associate will work to market fresh produce, flowers, potting and bedding plants, eggs and frozen meats. Responsibilities will include:  Helping with setup and teardown of the stand,  assisting with display and marketing aspects of the operation,  engaging and conversing with customers and p rocessing transactions. Please email a brief cover letter and resume to, including "Farmers' Market Position" in the subject line. Feel free to contact our Produce Manager, Bryce Davis, with any questions at 815-674-8235.

Mint Creek Farm is a 230 acre, Certified Organic, grass-fed livestock farm located about 80 miles south of Chicago. We have a wide diversity of livestock including sheep, cattle, goats, pigs, chickens, ducks and seasonal turkeys.

We are seeking interns/crew members to start immediately.  This is a paid, full-time position with room and board available. Come learn and gain an understanding of how to raise livestock and poultry organically on pasture. If you're thinking of starting your own farm, there is no substitute for hands-on experience like what you will receive here. If you're wondering whether farming is right for you or just want to see what life on an organic livestock farm is like, we would love to have you.

No experience is necessary, but experience in physical labor or mechanical work and animal care is helpful and a great attitude is a must.  Please send your resume or work history to

Land, Equipment, and Other:

NEW HOLLAND 1034 BALE WAGON (Mechanical hay loader/stacker)
A pull type wagon that can mechanically pick small square hay bales up out of the field and stack them into pallets of 100 bales that can be moved with a forklift.  Always shedded while I've owned them, since 1999.  I've quit raising hay.  Two available.  Asking $5,000 each, obo.  100 pallets also available.  Pictures available here. Contact Brian Severson at  815-584-1850 or email

Selling at least 8 pastured, non-GMO fed, antibiotic-free pigs for around $1 a pound. Also available are a few  Red wattles which are antibiotic free, grown outside and will sell for 85 cents per pound. If you are interested contact Ammon Troyer at (217) 543- 2979.

Small organic farm in Clintonville, Wisconsin. Chemical free for more than 15 years. Two tillable acres on quiet property (~ 4 acres) located on the wooded banks of the Pigeon River Watershed. Perfect for family who wants to enjoy nature, grow their own vegetables and fruits (apple and pear trees on property), fish and hunt, and live near a small community. Used for market gardens. Room to build a house. Two car garage, electricity, drilled well, septic system, greenhouse (house?) foundation, large compost bins on farm. Call 920-788-2445 or email

LAND USE OPPORTUNITY:  2.5 acres on north side of Aurora, IL
Landowner is making land available for garden/farm use. Has been in grass
since 1981. Located near Indian Trail and Mitchell Road. Call owner Bill
Robinson at  630-927-0519.
Thank you to all the sponsors, donors, and supporters that make the daily operations and programs of The Land Connection possible. We couldn't do it without you!


 And thanks to all of our 2016 Market Sponsors!

 Emmanuel Memorial Episcopal Church