Pasture Management Workshop: Weed Control and Old Field Restoration

Is your pasture or hayfield overrun with buttercup and/or smooth bedstraw? Do you have old fields that you would like to bring back? On Tuesday, July 23 at 6:30 pm, Knox-Lincoln Soil & Water Conservation District is hosting a workshop with Rick Kersbergen, Waldo County Extension Educator in Sustainable Dairy and Forage Systems. Rick will address the problems of how to get weeds under control and manage your fields to keep them under control. Both chemical and non-chemical methods of control will be discussed. The program will be held at Knox-Lincoln County Extension at 377 Manktown Rd, Waldoboro, just across the road from Medomak Valley High School campus. Bring your problems and questions for Rick to solve! NRCS grazing sticks and soil test boxes and forms will be available. This program is free, but please register by contacting Knox-Lincoln SWCD at 596-2040 or Let us know if you need special accommodations to attend.
Richard Kersbergen, an Extension Professor and a cooperating research scientist with the New England Plant Soil and Water lab, is a national expert and leader in the Organic Dairy industry. He has served as the state contact for the Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education program of the USDA and has just finished as chair of the Northeast Pasture Consortium. Over the years, Rick has worked as an extension agent, farm manager for the UMaine Experiment Station and also worked to support hundreds of Cooperative Extension volunteer Master Gardeners and responded to thousands of home horticulture client calls.
For more information and publications on pastures and a map of the workshop location, visit

Farm Bill update

From the National Association of Conservation Districts:

House to begin Farm Bill debate – Contact your Representatives TODAY!


The House Rules Committee will meet at 5:00 p.m. today to discuss the rule for general debate on the Farm Bill. The rule they agree to will likely be brought to a vote on Tuesday, followed by Farm Bill debate. According to House Majority leader Eric Cantor, the last vote of the week will be held on Thursday at 3:00 p.m. with no votes expected on Friday. Next week the House is in session Tuesday through Friday, followed by a week of recess for the 4th of July holiday.


NACD joined a coalition letter to Chairman Sessions and Ranking Member Slaughter of the Rules Committee, stating “as you consider a rule for debate of H.R. 1947, the Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management Act of 2013, the undersigned organizations write to urge you to include among the amendments for consideration language contained in H.R. 2260, the Crop Insurance Accountability Act of 2013, authored by Rep. Mike Thompson (D-CA), and Rep. Jeff Fortenberry (R-NE).” This is the mirror House legislation to the compliance deal reached in the Senate. As part of that deal, we also oppose amendments to crop insurance, and we anticipate they may come from Rep. Kind (D-WI), Rep, Carney (D-DE), Rep. Radel (R-FL), and Rep Speier (D-CA).

We have not heard of other conservation amendments, but we will be tracking the Floor all week to keep you up to date. Please remember to continue calling your Members of Congress to tell them that we need a Farm Bill – let’s get this passed on the House Floor so we can get to conference! Once you make contact, please report back to Kimberly Koch at to let her know, and include any feedback you receive.

Agriculture Appropriations

Last Thursday, the House Appropriations Committee approved the House Agriculture Appropriations Subcommitee’s bill for fiscal year ending September 30, 2014. This bill may head to the House Floor right after the Farm Bill. The Senate Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee is expected to mark up its bill tomorrow.

In the House bill, the Conservation Operations allocation is $810 million, which is an improvement over our current Continuing Resolution for fiscal year 2013, which allocates $768 million. Of the total $810 million, about $714 is for Technical Assistance. Also Watershed Rehabilitation received $12million for fiscal year 2014.

There has been no signal that House Interior Appropriations will bring its bill any time soon.

More on the Farm Bill today is at the Politico website: