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Spring flowersAlthough summer temperatures are still going strong here in the Southeast, we're starting to get hints of fall! The early mornings are cool and foggy, county fairs are happening, and we're planting fall crops. We're ecstatic about all the amazing fresh produce still available at this time of year. We hope that wherever you are, you're enjoying an abundant harvest.

Speaking of abundance: read on to learn about all the publications, podcasts, videos, workshops, and more that your NCAT Southeast staff members have worked on this summer. Thanks for your interest in NCAT and our programs!

—Margo Hale, Southeast Regional Office Director

Current Topic: Disease and Pest Management in Fruit Production

Goat and two kids

This spring and summer were very challenging for producers of all types, thanks to excess rain across the Southeast and beyond. NCAT's Horticulture Specialist Guy Ames has written a series of blog posts addressing the specific difficulties of managing diseases and pests in orchards and vineyards.

In one of his blog entries, Guy stresses the importance of "the farmer's footsteps" as one of the most important strategies for managing pests and diseases. By getting out and walking his orchard and vineyard daily, he can spot problems early and nip them in the bud. He also points out the importance of making sure you properly identify the disease or pest, so that you can take the right action.

Other topics Guy has covered recently include petal fall, fire blight, disease resistance in apple varieties, the disease triangle, and Japanese beetles. You can read all of Guy's posts (and more) on the Southeast Regional Office page. He has also written many ATTRA Sustainable Agriculture publications on fruit production. Bookmark our ATTRA YouTube channel so you can refer back to Guy's videos on how to prune fruit trees and pruning tools & tips. Questions about growing fruit in the Southeast? Contact Guy via our toll-free helpline, 1-800-346-9140 or email



Armed to Farm Update

Armed to Farm

Back in May, NCAT Southeast Regional Director Margo Hale and Armed to Farm Coordinator Robyn Metzger traveled to Crawfordsville, Indiana, to lead our twentieth Armed to Farm training. We were thrilled to partner with Armed to Farm alumnus Sara Creech, who farms near Crawfordsville and is president of the Farmer Veteran Coalition of Indiana. Cindy Chastain of AgrAbility also helped plan the Indiana event. We were excited to hold our first Armed to Farm in the Midwest, and it was a great week. Read more about it on our blog here.

Armed to Farm

NCAT Southeast's Nina Prater returned to her home state of Vermont in June to help NCAT Northeast staff with an Armed to Farm in Craftsbury Common. Participants stayed at Sterling College and enjoyed the school's fabulous facilities, food, and farm. Highlights of the training included meeting the College's draft animals and visiting a maple sugaring operation.

Margo traveled to Victor, New York, in August for our fourth Armed to Farm in that state. Our partners at Cornell Small Farms Program put together great farm tours, including a visit to Bristol Hills Lavender and Flower Farm. Owner Susan Orellana-Clark attended Armed to Farm in 2016 and it was great to hear from her and see how her operation has grown.

Visit our website to learn more about Armed to Farm - Sustainable Agriculture Training for Military Veterans. Follow us on Facebook to learn about upcoming trainings and other resources.



Woolsey Incubator Farm Project Update

Armed to Farm

Spearheaded by NCAT Southeast's Luke Freeman, the Woolsey Farm Project is a collaboration between NCAT, Cobblestone Farms, and the City of Fayetteville, Arkansas. It is supported by an EPA Environmental Education Award. We're a few months into the project now, and we are excited about the progress our first three incubator farmers have made. Read about what they've been growing at their farm plots, as well as the other educational activities that are part of the project, in our blog post Incubator Farm Project Cultivates Farmers and Community.



Southern SARE Workshop Series Recap

Earlier in the spring, NCAT Southeast staff wrapped up a series of workshops—one per month for six months—with the same group of farmers from Arkansas and Oklahoma. The "Taking Your Farm to the Next Level" workshop series started in November 2018 and concluded in April 2019. The participating farmers had several years of production experience but wanted to focus on the business aspects of farming to improve their operations. It was a diverse group of livestock and crop producers with varying scales of production. Read more about the workshop series on our blog here.



Southeast Staff Out and About

  • Livestock Specialist Linda Coffey traveled to San Marcos, Texas for the Farm and Food Leadership Conference in early August. She spoke on sheep and goat health at this powerhouse conference sponsored by Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance (FARMA) and Small Producer's Initiative (SPI). For more information on small ruminant production, see the Livestock section of ATTRA Sustainable Agriculture's website.
  • Linda also traveled to Ghent, Belgium, in August for an international meeting on sustainable management of internal parasites in small ruminants. The meeting brought together members of the Combatting Anthelmintic Resistance (COMBAR) group, a consortium of 32 European countries, and the American Consortium for Small Ruminant Parasite Control (ACSRPC). The ACSRPC includes members from the USA, Mexico, and South Africa. Linda presented a poster about the ACSRPC's efforts to bring scientific research to farmers.



Upcoming Events

NCAT staff members will participate in the following events:

Beginning Livestock Workshop
9:00 a.m.-4 p.m., Oct. 4, 2019
Judsonia, AR
Visit NCAT's event page for more info.

IRWP Grazing School
8 a.m.-3 p.m., Oct. 9, 2019
Siloam Springs, AR
Click here for more info.

Organic Oklahoma Conference
Oct. 9-10, 2019
OSU-OKC Student Center, Oklahoma City, OK
More info here.

Certified Naturally Grown Workshop
Oct. 24, 3-6 p.m.
Cobblestone Farms, Fayetteville, AR
More info here.

Arkansas Association of Grape Growers Annual Conference
Nov. 1, 2019
Fayetteville, AR
More info here.



New ATTRA Resources


ATTRA logo

High Tunnel Grapes: Establishment

Beneficial and Pest Birds: Vertebrate IPM Tip Sheet


• Guy and Luke share the joys and challenges of Growing Organic Grapes in the Southeast.

• Nina talks to farmer (and former NCATer) Janet Bachmann about Cut Flower Production.

• Margo and Linda are back with another episode of Small (Ruminant) Talk.

• Nina and Margo discuss Soil Health and the Five Soil Health Principles.


Intermediated Markets


• Mississippi Food Justice Collaborative video series: Local Food Access, Economic Development, and Education.

• See the High Tunnel Grapes playlist on ATTRA's YouTube channel for a series of videos produced by Luke Freeman.



NCAT logo

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

ATTRA - A National Sustainable Agriculture Assistance Program - is developed and managed by the National Center for Appropriate Technology.



Keep up-to-date on all the news and events from NCAT Southeast by visiting our webpage:

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Contact NCAT's Southeast Office:
20 E. Spring St., Ste. 101
PO Box 3657
Fayetteville, AR 72701
(479) 442-9824
(866) 442-6085

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Copyright © September 2019
The National Center for Appropriate Technology

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Fayetteville, AR 72702

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