Happy New Year from The Dirt!

Welcome to The Dirt, the newsletter of the Southeast Regional Office of the National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT). You are receiving this newsletter because you have expressed interest in NCAT and ATTRA-National Sustainable Agriculture Information Service. Enjoy!

—Margo Hale, Southeast Regional Office Director

Staff Spotlight: Guy Ames

Guy Ames
Photo by Robyn Metzger.

Guy K. Ames is a Horticulture Specialist with NCAT and the ATTRA Program and has over 40 years of experience gardening, farming, and orcharding. Guy received a B.A. from Texas A&M - Commerce, and an M.S. in horticulture (fruit crops and pest control in fruit crops) from the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville. For 23 years Guy has operated Ames Orchard & Nursery, producing both fruit and fruit plants on a small-scale commercial basis in the Arkansas Ozarks.

Guy's calendar has included both local and regional events this winter. He traveled to Tulsa, Okla., for the Oklahoma & Arkansas Horticulture Industries Show Jan. 10-11. The two-day conference, titled "Improving Your Production Toolbox," took place at the Tulsa Community College Northeast Campus. His next stop was the St. Louis area, where he conducted a workshop titled "Fruit Tree Grafting and Organic Fruit Production." The workshop, held on Jan. 25, was part of EarthDance Organic Farm's educational offerings. In addition to speaking about organic orchard establishment, pruning, pest and disease control, and other aspects of orchard management, Guy demonstrated how to graft trees. Participants had the opportunity to practice grafting, and took home two newly grafted apple trees.

Have a question about fruit production, or starting a community garden in your town? Stop by the Missouri Organic Association Conference in Springfield, Mo., and visit with Guy — he'll be there Feb. 6. You can download many publications written by Guy and other agriculture specialists at https://attra.ncat.org.

FoodCorps Arkansas now accepting applications for Service Sites and Service Members!

Is your Arkansas school or organization interested in investing in school and community health? You can do just that by becoming a FoodCorps Arkansas Service Site! FoodCorps places motivated leaders in limited-resource communities for a year of public service. Read a testimonial from a current service site supervisor here: http://arkansasfoodcorps.blogspot.com/2014/01/guest-post-letter-from-foodcorps.html. For more information about becoming a service site, visit http://arkansasfoodcorps.blogspot.com/p/become-service-site.html. The application is located at www.ncat.org/foodcorps/.

If you are interested in becoming a FoodCorps Service Member, visit https://foodcorps.org/become-a-service-member to apply. The application period is open now through March 30th. If you want to serve your community, help kids get excited about vegetables and gardening, learn new skills, and become part of a nation-wide network of leaders, then this opportunity is for YOU.

Out and About in the Southeast

Business Planning Workshop for Farmers

Business Planning Workshop for Farmers
Attendees shared their personal farming experiences during the workshop, which drew more than 30 participants from across the state of Arkansas. Photo by Robyn Metzger.

NCAT — along with partners at the University of Arkansas (UA) and Fayetteville Public Schools (FPS), and with support from Southern SARE—offered a free, one-day workshop for farmers on Tuesday, January 28. The workshop took place at the Jefferson Center in Fayetteville, Ark.

Session topics included business planning and recordkeeping, production planning, and scaling up production. Participants also received information about the Farm to School program at FPS. In addition, several established farmers shared marketing strategies in a panel discussion.

Email margoh@ncat.org to find out how NCAT can provide speakers, publications, and other resources for your events.

FoodCorps, Energy Corps Members Honor Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day

In honor of the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service, on Monday, January 20th, Energy Corps members, alumni, and volunteers in Northwest Arkansas distributed free home weatherization kits from the City of Fayetteville Community Resources Division to residents.

Northwest Arkansas FoodCorps service members participated in several activities in Fayetteville, along with partners Arkansas Hunger Relief Alliance, Ozark Natural Foods, Tri Cycle Farms, and Trinity United Methodist Church.

Martin Luther King Day FoodCorps Arkansas member Kelsie Shearrer (second from left) talks with shoppers about making healthy choices at the grocery store. Photo by Rachel Spencer.

You can read more about NCAT's Energy Corps and FoodCorps MLK Day of Service activities, plus see updates on other news and events, on our Southeast Regional page of the NCAT website: https://www.ncat.org/ncat-southeast-regional-office.

Connect with NCAT's Southeast Office:

Follow NCAT on Facebook Follow NCAT on Twitter ATTRA's Youtube Channel ATTRA's Pinterest Profile

207 West Center Street
PO Box 3657
Fayetteville, AR 72701
(479) 442-9824
(866) 442-6085


Upcoming Events
NCAT Specialists will attend the following upcoming events:

Missouri Organic Conference
February 6-8, 2014
Springfield, MO
More info »

Rural Life Conference
February 28, 2014
Pine Bluff, AR
More info »

Arkansas Coalition for Obesity Prevention (ArCOP) Regional Summit
March 19, 2014
Fayetteville, AR
More info »


ATTRA logo

Newly released ATTRA publications:

If you have questions about sustainable agriculture production or marketing, using renewable energy on your farm, or how to become certified organic, call ATTRA, the National Sustainable Agriculture Information Service. We're here to help! 1-800-346-9140 or 1-800-411-3222 en Español.

ATTRA is a program developed and maintained by the National Center for Appropriate Technology through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Rural Business Cooperative Service.

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Arkansas FoodCorps Facebook »
Arkansas FoodCorps Blog »
National FoodCorps Page » EnergyCorps Logo

AR EnergyCorps Facebook »
National EnergyCorps Page »


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Copyright © January 2014
The National Center for Appropriate Technology

NCAT mailing address:
207 West Center Street
Fayetteville, AR 72701

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