Resource Guide to Organic and Sustainable Vegetable Production

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Resource Guide to Organic and Sustainable Vegetable Production

  1. 1. 8 0 0 -3 4 6 -9 1 4 0 RESOURCE GUIDE TO ORGANIC & SUSTAINABLE VEGETABLE PRODUCTIONAppropria te Technology Tra ns fer for Rura l Area s HORTICULTURE RESOURCE LIST www.attra.ncat.org ATTRA is the national sustainable agriculture information center funded by the USDA’s Rural Business -- Cooperative Service.By Steve Diver 4.8 ATTRA Publications Relating to PestNCAT Agricultural Specialist ManagementSeptember 2001 5.0 Vegetable Industry Resources 6.0 Selected Vegetable Production Materials onTable of Contents the Web 7.0 Magazines & Newsletters on Vegetable1.0 About This Resource List Production and Market Gardening 1.1 Who Should Use This Guide 8.0 Databases & Directory Links to Vegetable 1.2 How to Use This Guide Crops and Associated Production Practices 1.3 About the Use of Web Resources on the Web 1.4 What is Sustainable Vegetable Production 9.0 Organic Farming Primer 1.5 What is Organic Vegetable Production 10.0 Organic Certification and Marketing2.0 The Farmers Bookshelf: 11.0 Economics of Organic Vegetable Production 2.1 Publications on Sustainable Vegetable 12.0 Magazines & Newsletters on Organic Production, Market Gardening, and Farming and Sustainable Agriculture Commercial Vegetable Production 13.0 Publishers & Book Distributors 2.2 Specialty, Ethnic and Minor Vegetable Crops 2.3 Literature on Organic Agriculture 2.4 Modern Literature on Organic Farming 1.0 About This Resource List 2.5 Literature on Sustainable Agriculture 2.6 Literature on Alternative Farming Systems In 1994, ATTRA published a 47-page information3.0 Soil Management package titled Sustainable Vegetable Production. At 3.11 Books & Bulletins on Soil Fertility the time it was a leading information source on 3.12 Soil Fertility Web Links organic and sustainable vegetable production. 3.21 Print & Video Resources on Cover Crops However, in 1999 Dr. Vernon Grubinger, vegetable 3.22 Cover Crop Web Links specialist at the University of Vermont, came out 3.23 UC-SAREP Cover Crop Resources with a comprehensive book on this subject, 3.31 Books & Bulletins on Composts and Sustainable Vegetable Production From Start-Up to Manures Market. With the advent of Grubingers book— 3.32 Web Links on Composts and Manures published by the Natural Resource, Agriculture, and 3.41 Books & Bulletins on Soil Organic Matter Engineering Service (NRAES) in Ithaca, New 3.42 Soil Organic Matter Web Links York—weve discontinued the ATTRA information 3.51 Books & Bulletins on Earthworms, package. We think the NRAES book does an Microbes, and Soil Biology excellent job of providing a comprehensive and 3.52 Soil Biology Web Links farmer-friendly overview of sustainable vegetable4.0 IPM for Vegetables production. 4.1 Print & Video Resources on IPM 4.2 IPM Web Links In keeping with the ATTRA tradition to carve out a 4.3 Print & Video Resources on Weed Control niche where no agricultural specialist has gone for Vegetables and Row Crops before, we elected to produce a resource guide of 4.4 Weed Control Web Links educational materials that supports the needs of 4.5 Weather, Agriculture and IPM organic and sustainable vegetable farmers. Thus, we 4.6 IPM Certification and Labeling offer this title—Resource Guide to Organic and 4.7 IPM Databases & Search Engines Sustainable Vegetable Production. is a project of the National Center for Appropriate Technology
  2. 2. Farmers making a transition to sustainable farming 1.1 Who Should Use This Guideneed information on a wide variety of topicse.g.,legumes as a source of nitrogen, cover crops, Farmers and others who work in commercialcompost, non-chemical weed control, biointensive agriculturee.g., Extension specialists, NRCS, cropIPM, etc. This Guide provides a summary of some of advisors, teachers, and researchers. The focus isthe best in-print and on-line sources around. heavily oriented to practical approaches to organic and sustainable farming.Moreover, ATTRA specialists will continue toaddress organic and sustainable production of 1.2 How to Use This Guidespecific vegetable crops—tomatoes, sweet corn,onions, melons, asparagus—as well as Printed literature like books and bulletins are listedcomplementary production technologies such as first; these are followed by a selection of on-linecompost teas, baking soda as an alternative resources. In some instances, a web versionfungicide, disease-suppressive potting mixes, use of corresponds with the book and these have beenrefractometers to measure sugar content, foliar noted.feeding, living mulches, flame weeding, etc. Publishers and distributors that sell the booksHere it should be noted that farmers raising herbs or reviewed here are listed in a special section at thefield-grown cut flowers face nearly identical end of this resource guide. For details on sales price,production requirements. Thus, when we talk about shipping expenses, and ordering information, contactcover crops or weed control or soil management for the publishers.vegetables, the same approach will work for field-grown cut flowers and herbs. 1.3 About the Use of Web ResourcesA Partial Listing of ATTRA Publications and The Internet has revolutionized the way informationResources Related to Vegetable Production: is distributed and obtained.• Overview of Organic Crop Production Whereas it used to take several weeks or months to• Manures for Organic Crop Production wait for a publication to arrive in the mail, with a few• Companion Planting: Basic Concepts & mouse clicks many of these items now instantly Resources appear on your computer screen. Better yet, all these• Suppliers of Organic and/or Non-GE Seeds & articles and bulletins are free. In addition, some Plants items—including many Extension Service fact• Organic Plug and Transplant Production sheets—are available only in electronic form. Thus,• Organic Potting Mixes some portions of this resource list are more heavily• Season Extension Techniques for Market oriented to web resources than others. Gardeners If you have received this resource list but you don’t• Organic Allium Production have a computer at home, please see your local• Organic Asparagus Production librarian for assistance. Most rural libraries now• Organic Sweet Corn Production have computer access.• Organic Sweet Potato Production• Organic Tomato Production How To Read Web Documents:• Specialty Lettuce and Greens: Organic Production .HTML Hyper Text Markup Language; click and• Herb Overview read online. Most common format.• Sustainable Cut Flower Production .PDF Portable Document Format; requires Adobe• Organic Certification & The National Organic Acrobat Reader to download. Program• Organic Marketing Resources• Community Supported Agriculture• Direct Marketing• Farmers’ Markets ATTRA // Resource Guide to Organic & Sustainable Vegetable Production Page 2
  3. 3. 1.4 What is Sustainable Vegetable Production 1.5 What is Organic Vegetable ProductionFor the purpose of an introduction, sustainable In a nutshell, organic farming is based on theagriculture can be characterized as follows: following approaches and production inputs:• Sustainable agriculture is a goal rather than a • Strict avoidance of synthetic fertilizers and specific set of farming practices. Progress or synthetic pesticides movement toward the goal may be viewed as a • Crop rotations, crop residues, mulches continuum. • Animal manures and composts • Cover crops and green manures• A sustainable farming system strives to be • Organic fertilizers and soil amendments productive and profitable, while at the same time • Biostimulants, humates, and seaweeds preserving environmental quality and making • Compost teas and herbal teas efficient use of nonrenewable resources. • Marine, animal, and plant by-products • Biorational, microbial, and botanical pesticides,• Sustainable agriculture is concerned about the and other natural pest control products well-being of rural communities and the quality of life for families and farmworkers. In 1980, organic farming was defined by the USDA as a system that excludes the use of synthetic• Though biological practices and products are fertilizers, pesticides, and growth regulators. favored over chemical inputs, pesticides and Organic certification emerged as a grassroots fertilizers may be used within an IPM production and marketing tool during the 1970s and framework. 1980s to ensure that foods labeled “organic” met specified standards of production. The OrganicOne of the quickest ways to grasp production Foods Production Act, a section of the 1990 Farmpractices associated with sustainable vegetable Bill, enabled the USDA to develop a nationalproduction is to examine the guidelines and standards program of universal standards, certificationfor integrated farming systems, such as: accreditation, and food labeling.• Integrated Pest Management In April 2001, the USDA released the Final Rule of• Integrated Crop Management the National Organic Program. This federal law• Integrated Farm Management stipulates, in considerable detail, exactly what a grower can and cannot do to produce and market aIn some instances, point systems are employed to product as organic. Application for certificationcertify the adoption of recommended best must be made, paperwork completed, fees paid, andmanagement practices. For example, a grower can annual inspections undergone. To learn more aboutearn points toward “certified IPM” status for sweet the details of the certification process, see ATTRAscorn through the use of cover crops, crop rotations, Organic Certification & National Organic Programnitrogen fertilizer applied in split application, etc. information packet.To guide decisions on ways to approach sustainable A companion ATTRA publication—Overview offarming, it is helpful to become knowledgeable about Organic Crop Production—is recommended to gainthe principles of agroecology and sustainability. a better understanding of the history, philosophy, andUltimately, each farmer adopts their own approach. practices of organic farming.Resource: Resource:Introduction to Sustainable Agriculture & An Overview of Organic Crop ProductionAgroecology By George Kuepper, ATTRAATTRAs Related Web Links Site http://www.attra.org/attra-pub/organiccrop.htmlhttp://www.attra.org/rel.html ATTRA // Resource Guide to Organic & Sustainable Vegetable Production Page 3
  4. 4. 2.0 The Farmer’s Bookshelf The New Organic Grower: A Masters Manual of Tools and Techniques for the Home and MarketHere is a selection of some of the best resources for the Gardener, 2nd Edition. 1995. By Eliot Coleman.farmers bookshelf. For-sale books are available from the Chelsea Green Publishing Co., White River Junction,sources listed in the Publishers & Distributors section. VT. 340 p.Out-of-print literature and reference titles (mainly in thehistorical section) are available through Inter-Library Loan. Eliot Coleman’s book The New Organic Grower has probably had more impact on the organic market2.1 Publications on Sustainable Vegetable gardening movement in the United States than any other single publication. Coleman advocates the use Production, Market Gardening, and of walking tractors, wheel hoes, multi-row dibble Commercial Vegetable Production sticks, soil block transplants, and other tools and techniques that help make market gardening muchSustainable Vegetable Production From Start-Up more efficient. The techniques he describes wereto Market. 1999. By Vernon P. Grubinger. honed from years of experience as a farmer, combinedNRAES-104. Natural Resource, Agriculture, and with traditional market gardening techniques fromEngineering Service, Ithaca, NY. 268 p. Europe. Yet he also injects the insights and wisdom of a pioneer in organics to help the reader acquire new Vernon Grubinger is an Extension Vegetable ways of thinking; e.g., plant positive production Specialist in Vermont. This book resulted from a philosophy. This is a complete how-to-get-started vegetable production course he taught on sabbatical at manual on conceptualizing and practicing commercial the University of Maine in 1996. Sustainable organic vegetable production. Highly recommended. Vegetable Production From Start-Up to Market is without a doubt the most comprehensive and modern How to Grow More Vegetables, 5th Edition. 1995. textbook on sustainable vegetable production. By John Jeavons. Ten Speed Press, Berkeley, CA. Chapters address concepts and terminology associated 201 p. with sustainable and organic production philosophies, production practices (soil fertility management, on- John Jeavons’s book How to Grow More Vegetables is farm composting, crop rotations, cover crops and the classic text on the biointensive method of green manures, tillage and field preparation, seeds and production. This is the production system that transplants, weed control, etc.) as well as business emphasizes double digging, intensive spacing, planning and marketing. Special features include companion planting, organic soil preparation, and high farmer profiles and lots and lots of useful tables and yields in minimal space. Jeavons’s book is filled with sidebars. Farmer-friendly; highly recommended. useful information and charts. The Ecology Action Institute founded by Jeavons publishes numerousSustainable Practices for Vegetable Production in booklets and research results on topics relating tothe South. 1996. By Mary Peet. Focus Publishing, biointensive production methods, organic fertilizers,R. Pullins Co., Newburyport, MA. 174 p. cover crops, composts, small-scale production data, etc. Whereas the scale of production advocated by Sustainable Practices for Vegetable Production in the Jeavons is too small for many growers, the principles South by Mary Peet is the result of a USDA are universally applicable. Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) grant to North Carolina State University. This For a list of Ecology Action titles, descriptions, and was the first attempt by a land-grant university to ordering information, see: collate and synthesize information relevant to http://solstice.crest.org/sustainable/ecology_action/ sustainable vegetable production. Chapters provide index.html overviews on production practices (soil management, cover crops, conservation tillage, and insect, disease, nematode, and weed management) followed by crop profiles on individual vegetable crops. The crop profiles provide a nice summary of standard production practices (botany, plant characteristics, planting, spacing, harvesting). A full-scale web version is available online at: http://www2.ncsu.edu/ncsu/cals/sustainable/peet/ ATTRA // Resource Guide to Organic & Sustainable Vegetable Production Page 4
  5. 5. Backyard Market Gardening: The Entre- Knotts Handbook for Vegetable Growers, 4thpreneur’s Guide to Selling What You Grow. Edition. 1997. By Donald N. Maynard and George1993. By Andrew W. Lee. Good Earth Publications, J. Hochmuth. John Wiley, New York, NY. 582 p.Columbus, NC. 351 p. Knotts Handbook for Vegetable Growers is the classic Andy Lee has over 20 years of market gardening reference text for vegetable growers. It is jam-packed experience and is executive director of the Good Earth with useful tables, data, calculations, and relevant Farm School in Virginia. Lee’s book has a nice information on commercial production. section on farm equipment with black-and-white photos. Most of the book is geared to the marketing The Organic Gardener’s Home Reference: and business side of market gardening. A Plant-by-Plant Guide to Growing Fresh, Healthy Food. 1994. By Tanya Denckla.The Flower Farmer: An Organic Grower’s A Garden Way Publishing Book. StoreyGuide to Raising and Selling Cut Flowers. 1997. Communications, Inc., Pownal, VT. 273 p.By Lynn Byczynski. Chelsea Green Publishing Co.,White River Junction, VT. 207 p. The Organic Gardener’s Home Reference by Tanya Denckla is a perfect complement to Knotts Handbook The Flower Farmer is an important contribution to the for Vegetable Growers as a quick reference source on organic market gardening literature because field- vegetable production. The Plant Charts summarize grown flowers are a common part of a crop mix for production guidelines for 28 vegetable crops in an local sales. As editor of the Growing for Market easy-to-read format, including: growth conditions; newsletter, Lynn Bycznski has a knack for writing harvest; storage requirements; growing tips; selected about market gardening ideas and practices. The farm varieties; common pests and diseases; and plant allies, profiles of cut flower growers around the U.S. are a companions, and incompatibles. Other charts nice feature of her book. summarize disease and insect control options, and plant allies and companions.Producing Vegetable Crops, 4th Edition. 1992. ByJohn M. Swiader, George W. Ware, and J.P.McCollum. Interstate Publishers, Inc., Danville, IL.626 p. Producing Vegetable Crops is one of the standard textbooks on commercial vegetable production. It draws heavily on data and recommendations published by the Cooperative Extension Service and Agricultural Experiment Stations. These textbooks serve as a good reference for any commercial vegetable grower, whether organic or conventional.Vegetable Growing Handbook: Organic andTraditional Methods, 4th Edition. 1990. By WalterE. Splittstoesser. An AVI Book, Van NostrandReinhold, New York. 362 p. Vegetable Growing Handbook is a second vegetable textbook worth noting. Though its coverage of organic farming methods is brief, the vegetable production summaries are well done and it contains a section on specialty vegetables. ATTRA // Resource Guide to Organic & Sustainable Vegetable Production Page 5
  6. 6. 2.2 Specialty, Ethnic, and Minor Vegetable detailed information on 78 Oriental crops (including many greens like mizuna, aburana, komatsura, edible Crops chrysanthemums, yellow mustard); each entry includes steps of production from sowing and germinationSpecialty vegetables, baby vegetables, heirlooms, colored through thinning, weeding, and harvest.varieties, ethnic vegetables... market farmers like to raisethese minor crops and sell them at farmers markets andother niche markets. Cornucopia II: A Source Book of Edible Plants, 2nd Edition. 1998. By Stephen Facciola. Kampong Publications, Vista, CA. 713 p.World Vegetables: Principles, Production andNutritive Values, 2nd Edition. 1997. By Vincent E. Cornucopia is a superb compendium, as well asRubatzky and Mas Yamaguchi. International sourcebook, of edible plants. It contains descriptionsThompson Science (Chapman & Hall), New York, and seed or nursery sources for approximately 3,000NY. 853 p. species, with detailed cultivar listings for over 110 major crops representing the most popular fruits, World Vegetables is a textbook on vegetables vegetables, nuts, herbs, grains, and mushrooms. It produced around the world, with comprehensive also contains a comprehensive bibliography and coverage of specialty and minor vegetable crops. appendices that organize plants according to 60 different food use categories or edible plant parts.Specialty and Minor Crops Handbook, 2nd Edition. Truly a masterpiece!1998. Small Farm Center. University of California,Publication 3346. 184 p. New Crops. Proceedings of National Symposia, Vols I–IV. Center for New Crops & Plant Products, This is a beautiful publication from University of Purdue University. California that provides brief fact sheets for about 63 minor vegetables. Each crop is summarized with a The New Crops symposiums held in 1990, 1993, 1996 color photo, market information, cultural information, and 1999 were published in a series of hard-bound seed sources, and bibliography. proceedings that contain a wealth of information on new, specialty, and ethnic crops. All volumes areManual of Minor Vegetables. 1988. By James M. available for sale in print; however, the first threeStephens. University of Florida. Florida volumes are also on-line.Cooperative Extension, Bulletin SP-40. 123 p. Advances in New Crops (1990) The Manual of Minor Vegetables from University of http://www.hort.purdue.edu/newcrop/ Florida was one of the first attempts by land-grant proceedings1990/v1-toc.html universities to offer informational materials on minor vegetable crops. It is mainly listed here as a reference source for southeastern U.S. farmers. New Crops (1993) http://www.hort.purdue.edu/newcrop/Oriental Vegetables: The Complete Guide for CropInfoSources/NewCropsBook1993_info.htmlGarden and Kitchen. 1991. By Joy Larkcom.Kodansha International, New York. 232 p. Progress in New Crops (1996) http://www.hort.purdue.edu/newcrop/ Oriental vegetables are popular in towns with Asian CropInfoSources/NewCropsBook1996_info.html ethnic markets, and Joy Larkcom’s book is one of the best popular-press books on this topic. It contains Vegetables and Fruits: A Guide to Heirloom detailed entries on over 100 varieties of Oriental Varieties and Community-Based Stewardship. vegetables categorized into three sections: vegetables AFSIC that require temperate climates; those requiring subtropical climates; and herbs and water plants. http://www.nal.usda.gov/afsic/ AFSIC_pubs/heirloom/heirloom.htmLet Nature Do The Growing. 1986. By GajinTokuno. Japan Publications, Inc./Kodansha A wealth of resources from the National Agricultural Library containing bibliographical material, resourceInternational, Ltd., New York, NY. 279 p. organizations and seed sources, and historical documentation. Let Nature Do The Growing is a lesser-known text on organic vegetable production in Japan. It provides ATTRA // Resource Guide to Organic & Sustainable Vegetable Production Page 6
  7. 7. 2.3 Literature on Organic Agriculture The Holistic Agriculture Library http://www.soilandhealth.org/ [Agriculture Library]Organic agriculture has a rich history of farmers,researchers, and philosophers writing about holistic The Soil And Health Library, a web library compiledagriculture practices. As an introduction, five classic titles by Steve Solomon in Tasmania,that provide historical perspective are listed below. features full-text on-line versions of out-of-print organic agriculture classics.In addition, three resources are provided as access pointsfor further reading: (1) Tracing the Evolution of Organic- Plowmans Folly (1943). By Edward Faulkner.Sustainable Agriculture, a bibliography from the NationalAgricultural Library, (2) the Soil and Health web library, Chemicals, Humus and the Soil (1948). By Donald P.an on-line collection of classic texts, and (3) Future Hopkins.Horizons, a literature review from University of Nebraska. Farming and Gardening For Health or Disease [later editions titled Soil and Health] (1945). By Sir AlbertAn Agricultural Testament. 1943. By Sir Albert Howard.Howard. Oxford University Press, New York andLondon. 253 p. An Agricultural Testament (1943). By Sir Albert Howard.The Living Soil. 1949. By Lady Eve Balfour. Faberand Faber, LTD., London, England. 270 p. The Waste Products of Agriculture: Their Utilization as Humus (1931). By Sir Albert Howard and Yeshwant D. Wad.Soils and Men: Yearbook of Agriculture 1938.1938. USDA. United States Department of Soil Microorganisms and Higher Plants (1958).Agriculture, Washington, D.C. 1232 p. By N.A. Krasilnikov, Academy of Sciences of the USSR, Moscow.Pay Dirt: Farming and Gardening withComposts. 1945. By J.I. Rodale. Devin-Adair Co., Fertility Farming (1951). By Newman Turner.New York. 242 p. Future Horizons: Recent Literature inFertility Pastures: Herbal Leys as the Basis of Sustainable Agriculture. 1997. Extension andSoil Fertility and Animal Husbandry. 1955. By Education Materials for Sustainable Agriculture,Newman Turner. Faber and Faber, London. 204 p. Volume 6. University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Center for Sustainable Agricultural Systems. 222 p. ✼ ✼ ✼ The Center for Sustainable Agriculture Systems at theTracing the Evolution of Organic/Sustainable University of Nebraska compiled this resource guideAgriculture: A Selected and Annotated as part of a USDA-SARE grant. It reviews more thanBibliography. 1988. By Jane Potter Gates. 90 books on sustainable agriculture.National Agricultural Library, Bibliographies and On-line and for-sale print versions are available on theLiterature of Agriculture (BLA) No. 72. Internet at:http://www.nal.usda.gov/afsic/AFSIC_pubs/tracing.htm Future Horizons: Recent Literature in Sustainable Agriculture The Alternative Farming Systems Information Center http://ianrwww.unl.edu/ianr/csas/ at the National Agricultural Library compiled this extvol6.htm bibliography in 1988, yet it is still one of the best collections of literature to draw from on the history of organic/sustainable agriculture. The Core Historical Literature of Agriculture http://chla.library.cornell.edu/ Electronic collection of full-text agricultural books published between the early nineteenth century and the middle to late twentieth century. Dozens of classic titles! ATTRA // Resource Guide to Organic & Sustainable Vegetable Production Page 7
  8. 8. 2.4 Modern Literature on Organic Farming Global Perspectives on Agroecology and Sustainable Agricultural Systems. Vol. I and II.1980 marked a new era in organic farming literature, since 1988. By Patricia Allen and Debra Van Dusen.that was the year USDA published its landmark Report and Proceedings of the Sixth InternationalRecommendations on Organic Farming. While alternative Scientific Conference of IFOAM. Agroecologypress books written by farmers and farm advisors are Program, University of California, Santa Cruz, CA.abundant, the advent of scientific, university, and 730 p.agricultural-society-sponsored conference proceedings andtextbooks have enhanced the literature of organic Environmentally Sound Agriculture. 1983. Byagriculture. William Lockeretz (ed.) Selected Proceedings from the Fourth International Conference of IFOAM heldReport and Recommendations on Organic in Cambridge, MA. Praeger Publishers, New York.Farming. 1980. USDA Study Team. United States 426 p.Department of Agriculture, Washington, DC. 94p. Crop Protection in Organic and Low-Input This is the landmark report that helped usher in a new era of scientific and policy support for organic Agriculture. 1990. By Roger Unwin (ed.) agriculture at the USDA and associated agencies Proceedings of a symposium organized by the British (land-grant universities, Cooperative Extension Crop Protection Council held in Cambridge, UK. Service, Agricultural Experiment Stations, and Monograph No. 45. BCPC, Farnham, Surrey, scientific agriculture societies). Five years later, the England. 254 p. 1985 Farm Bill enacted legislation that resulted in the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education The Economics of Organic Farming: An program, or SARE. International Perspective. 1994. By Nicholas Lampkin and S. Padel (eds.) CAB International,Organic Farming. 1990. By Nicolas Lampkin. Wallingford, Oxon, UK. 468 p.Farming Press, Ipswich, United Kingdom.701 p. Organic Agriculture: Economic and Ecological Nicolas Lampkin is on the faculty at the Welsh Comparisons with Conventional Methods. 1978. Institute of Rural Studies associated with The By Robert C. Oelhaf. Allanheld, Osmun, & Co., University of Wales. Organic Farming is the most Montclair, N.J. 271 p. prominent effort by a university professor to address organic agriculture. In addition, the European Biological Husbandry: A Scientific Approach to ecological and organic farming literature—which Organic Farming. 1981. By B. Stonehouse (ed.) Lampkin heavily draws upon—is a rich source of Butterworths, London. 352 p. information. Towards a Holistic Agriculture: A ScientificAn Overview of Organic Crop Production Approach. 1987. By R.W. Widdowson.By George Kuepper, ATTRA Pergamon Press, Oxford, UK. 187 p.http://www.attra.org/attra-pub/organiccrop.html George Kuepper’s ATTRA publication is one of the Agricultural Production and Nutrition. 1997. By best factsheet-type primers on organic production, William Lockeretz (ed.) Proceedings of a conference providing principles, practices, and concepts that put it held in Boston, Massachusetts. Tufts University, all together. School of Nutrition Science and Policy, Medford, MA. 213 p.The Organic Method Primer Update. 1993. ByBargyla and Gylver Rateaver. The Rateavers, San The Importance of Biological Agriculture in aDiego, CA. 596 p. World of Diminishing Resources. 1986. By Vogtmann Hartmut, et al. (eds.) ProceedingsOrganic Farming: Current Technology and Its of the 5th International Scientific Conference ofRole in a Sustainable Agriculture. 1984. By D.F. IFOAM held at the University of KasselBezdicek (ed.) Agronomy Society of America (Germany). Verlagsgruppe Witzenhausen,Special Publication No. 46. ASA, CSSA, SSSA, Witzenhausen. 448 p.Madison, WI. 192 p. ATTRA // Resource Guide to Organic & Sustainable Vegetable Production Page 8
  9. 9. 2.5 Literature on Sustainable Agriculture Biodiversity and Pest Management in Agro- ecosystems. 1994. By Miguel Altieri. HaworthBy the mid-1980s, sustainable agriculture was a term Press, Binghampton, NY. 185 p.gaining wider usage. The 1985 Farm Bill—known as theconservation farm bill—spearheaded the creation of the Toward a More Sustainable Agriculture. 1986.USDA-SARE program and Conservation Reserve Program By Raymond P. Poincelot. AVI Pub. Co., Westport,(CRP). ATTRA, the national sustainable farming Conn. 241 p.information center that created this guide and related titles,was another product of the 1985 Farm Bill. Sustainable Agriculture & Integrated FarmingIn 1980, a person could put all of the important books Systems. 1985. By Thomas C. Edens, Cynthiarelating to sustainable agriculture on one shelf. Today, Fridgen, and Susan L. Battenfield (eds.) Michiganthere are so many academic books and symposium State University Press, East Lansing, MI. 344 p.proceedings on sustainable agriculture that it would bedifficult for even a university library to keep current. The Role of Microorganisms in a Sustainable Agriculture. 1986. By J.M. Lopez-Real and R.D.Alternative Agriculture. 1989. National Research Hodges (eds.) A.B. Academic, Berkhamsted.Council. National Academy Press, Washington, 246 p.D.C. 448 p. Environmentally Sound Agriculture. 1994.Sustainable Agriculture in Temperate Zones. By Kenneth L. Campbell, et al. (eds.) Proceedings of1990. By Charles A. Francis, Cornelia Butler Flora, the Second Conference held in Orlando, Florida.and Larry D. King. A Wiley-Interscience Publication, American Society of Agricultural Engineers, St.Wiley & Sons, New York, NY. 487 p. Joseph, MI. 578 p.Agroecology: The Science of Sustainable ✼ ✼ ✼Agriculture, 2nd Edition. 1995. By Miguel Altieri.Westview Press, Boulder, CO. 433 p. Sustainable Agriculture in Print Series Alternative Farming Systems Information Center,Agroecology: Ecological Processes in Sustainable National Agricultural Library.Agriculture. 1998. By Stephen R. Gliessman. Ann http://www.nal.usda.gov/afsic/sbjsusag.htmArbor Press, Chelsea, MI. 357 p. #saip The Sustainable Agriculture in Print Series, consistingSustainable Agricultural Systems. 1990. By C.A. of three bibliographies compiled by the AlternativeEdwards, R. Lal, P. Madden, R.H. Miller and G. Farming Systems Information Center, providesHouse (eds.) Soil and Water Conservation Society, bibliographic coverage of sustainable agricultureAnkeny, IA. 696 p. literature from 1580 to 1999.Sustainable Agriculture Systems. 1994. By J. L.Hatfield and D. L. Karlen (eds.) Lewis Publishers,Boca Raton, FL. 316 p.Ecology and Integrated Farming Systems. 1995.By D. M. Glen, M.P. Greaves, and H.M. Anderson(eds.) John Wiley & Sons, New York. 329 p.Sustainable Food Systems. 1983. By DietrichKnorr (ed.) AVI Pub. Co., Westport, Conn.416 p.Farming in Nature’s Image: An EcologicalApproach to Agriculture. 1992. By Judith D. Souleand Jon K. Piper. Island Press, Washington, DC.286 p. ATTRA // Resource Guide to Organic & Sustainable Vegetable Production Page 9
  10. 10. 2.6 Literature on Alternative Farming Biodynamic Farming Systems Biodynamic Farming Practice. 1992. By Fritz Sattler andEcological farming systems—Organic Farming, Eckard von Wistinghausen. Bio-Dynamic AgriculturalBiodynamic Farming, Permaculture, Eco-Farming, Association, Stourbridge, West Midlands, England. 336 p.Nature Farming—evolved as an alternative to chemicallyintensive agriculture. Each offers its own brand of Grasp the Nettle: Making Biodynamic Farming andphilosophy and practical farming methodologies. Here are Gardening Work. 1997. By Peter Proctor. Randomsome noteworthy titles. See the publishers catalogs and House, Auckland, N.Z. 176 p.website listings at the end of this guide for acomprehensive look at whats available. Biodynamic Farming & Compost Preparation By Steve Diver, ATTRA Organic Farming http://www.attra.org/attra-pub/biodynamic.htmlThe New Organic Manifesto. 1986. By Lee Fryer. Earth Natural FarmingFoods Associates, Wheatland, MD. 180 p. The One-Straw Revolution: An Introduction to NaturalStep by Step Organic Vegetable Gardening. 1992. By Farming. 1978. By Masanobu Fukuoka. Rodale Press,Shepherd Ogden. HarperCollins, New York. 299 p. Emmaus, PA. 181 p.Profitable Organic Farming. 1995. By John Newton. The Natural Way of Farming: The Theory and Practice ofBlackwell Science Ltd., Osney Mead, Oxford, UK. 142 p. Green Philosophy. 1987. By Masanobu Fukuoka. Japan Publications, Kodansha International-USA through HarperOrganic Farming and Growing. 1994. By Francis Blake. & Row, New York. 284 p.Crowood Press, Gypsy Lane, Swindon, Wiltshire. 221 p. The Road Back to Nature: Regaining the Paradise Lost. Eco-Farming 1987. By Masanobu Fukuoka. Japan Publications, Kodansha International-USA through Harper & Row, NewEco-Farm: An Acres U.S.A. Primer. 1991. By Charles York, NY. 377 p.Walters and C.J. Fenzau. Acres USA, Kansas City, MO.450 p. Nature FarmingScience in Agriculture. 1992. By Arden Andersen. Acres Beneficial and Effective Microorganisms for a SustainableUSA, Kansas City, MO. 370 p. World Dr. Teruo Higa and Dr. James F. ParrNon-Toxic Farming Handbook. 1998. By Philip Wheeler. http://www.agriton.nl/higa.htmlAcres, USA, Metarie, LA. 238 p. Nature Farming and Microbial Applications. 2000. Xu,The Biological Farmer. 2000. By Gary Zimmer. Acres Hui-lian, James F. Parr, and Hiroshi Umemura (eds.) FoodUSA, Austin, TX. 352 p. Products Press, The Haworth Press, Binghamton, NY. 402 p. Permaculture Nature Farming and Effective MicroorganismsIntroduction to Permaculture. 1991. By Bill Mollison By Steve Diver, ATTRAwith Reny Mia Slay. Tagari Publications, Tyalgum http://ncatark.uark.edu/~steved/Nature-Farm-EM.htmlAustralia. 198 p. Alternative Farming Systems PrimersEarth Users Guide to Permaculture. 1994. By RosemaryMorrow and Rob Allsop. Kangaroo Press, Kenthurst, Towards a Sustainable Agriculture. 1996. Steve Diver.NSW Australia. 152 p. New Renaissance, Vol. 6, No. 2. http://www.ru.org/artagri.htmlIntroduction to Permaculture: Concepts and ResourcesSteve Diver, ATTRA Sustainable Agriculture: Definitions and Termshttp://www.attra.org/attra-pub/perma.html Mary Gold, AFSIC, National Agricultural Library http://www.nal.usda.gov/afsic/AFSIC_pubs/srb9902.htm ATTRA // Resource Guide to Organic & Sustainable Vegetable Production Page 10
  11. 11. 3.0 Soil Management Start with the Soil. 1993. By Grace Gershuny. Rodale Press, Emmaus, PA. 274 p.Soil management—with its attention to cover crops, croprotations, composts, soil biology, soil testing, mineral Gershuny’s Start with the Soil is a nice complement tofertilizers—is fundamental to agriculture. Prior to the the primer noted above, Soul of the Soil. Though1970s and 80s, farmers getting into organics relied written for an organic gardening audience (Rodaleprimarily on old books and bulletins for information. Now, Press), the information, tables, and data build on herit would take a donkey cart to haul away the goldmine of previous book.useful print and web resources that awaits the beginner. Fertile Soil: A Grower’s Guide to Organic &3.11 Books & Bulletins on Soil Fertility Inorganic Fertilizers. 1990. By Robert Parnes. agAccess, Davis, CA. 190 p.Building Soils for Better Crops, 2nd Edition. 2000.By Fred Magdoff and Harold van Es. Sustainable Robert Parnes was an advisor for several years in the well-known Woods End Agricultural InstituteAgriculture Network, Handbook Series No. 4. laboratory. Fertile Soil—first published as OrganicSustainable Agriculture Publications, University of and Inorganic Fertilizers in 1986—is the other classicVermont. 240 p. soils manual from the 1980s that provides solid information to organic farmers. The tables on nutrient Building Soils for Better Crops, 2nd Edition (2000) by value and estimated fertilizer requirement for organic Fred Magdoff and Harold van Es, soil scientists at fertilizers in Parness book are the best alternative to University of Vermont and Cornell University standard N-P-K fertilizer guidelines. respectively, is a highly practical 230-page guide to ecological soil management. This is the best all-around Edaphos: Dynamics of a Natural Soil System. manual from the land-grant agricultural colleges on 1993. By Paul D. Sachs. The Edaphic Press, building and maintaining a healthy, productive soil. Topics addressed: organic matter, soil biology, Newbury, VT. 197 p. physical properties of soil, animal manures, cover crops, crop rotations, making and using composts, Paul Sachs is the founder of North Country Organics reducing compaction, appropriate tillage systems, in Bradford, VT, and Edaphos is an outgrowth of nutrient management, soil tests, and fertilizers. It also Sachss seminars and consulting work. Edaphos does features profiles of farmers implementing ecological an excellent job of explaining soil science and soil soil management practices, and is accompanied by management practices in simple terms, accompanied plenty of helpful illustrations and tables. The SAN by useful tables and diagrams. series of handbooks are well done and farmer-friendly. Highly recommended. Organic Soil Amendments and Fertilizers. 1992. By David E. Chaney and Laurie E. Drinkwater.The Soul of Soil: A Guide to Ecological Soil DNAR Publication No. 21505. UC SustainableManagement, 3rd Edition. 1995. By Grace Agriculture Research and Education Program,Gershuny and Joseph Smillie. agAccess, Davis, CA. University of California, Division of Agriculture and174 p. Natural Resources. 36 p. The Soul of Soil is the classic primer on ecological soil UC-SAREP—The University of Californias management, first published in 1983 as Grace Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education Gershunys Master’s Thesis at the University of Program—produced this bulletin in 1992, yet it is still Vermont. The 1986 edition co-authored with Joseph the best Extension Service publication on this topic. It Smillie is the one that became a primary information uses tables, data, and diagrams to explain soil organic source for organic farmers in the 1980s and 90s. It is matter and the wide range of organic amendments and jam-packed with useful concepts, tables, data, and fertilizers that are used in organic farming. knowledge about soils, humus, compost, crop rotations, cover crops, green manures, and mineral Western Fertilizer Handbook—Horticulture fertilizers. It belongs on the bookshelf of every Edition. 1990. By Albert E. Ludwick. Interstate organic farm. Publishers Inc., Danville, IL. 279 p. Farmers need access to all kinds of information, including standard fertility data. This is one of those handy guides used as an occasional reference source. ATTRA // Resource Guide to Organic & Sustainable Vegetable Production Page 11
  12. 12. The Soil Management Series (PC-7398) Dr. Ehrenfried Pfeiffer, Biodynamic PioneerUniversity of Minnesota Cooperative Extensionhttp://www.extension.umn.edu/distribution/ Bio-Dynamic Gardening and Farming. [collectedcropsystems/DC7398.html articles, ca. 1940 - 1961] Volume 1. 1983. By Ehrenfried Pfeiffer. Mercury Press, Spring Valley, The University of Minnesota recently put out a new series of Extension bulletins: New York. 126 p. 1. Soil Management (BU-7399) Bio-Dynamic Gardening and Farming. [collected 2. Compaction (BU-7400) articles, ca. 1940 - 1961] Volume 2. 1983. By 3. Manure Management (BU-7401) Ehrenfried Pfeiffer. Mercury Press, Spring Valley, 4. Organic Matter Management (BU-7402) New York. 142 p. 5. Soil Biology and Soil Management (BU-7403) Bio-Dynamic Gardening and Farming. [collected Each publication is organized according to the articles, ca. 1940 - 1961]. Volume 3. 1984. By following sections: Ehrenfried Pfeiffer. Mercury Press, Spring Valley, The Soil Manager - explains management options for New York. 132 p. improving your soil. The Soil Scientist - reviews the soil science principles Soil Fertility: Renewal and Preservation. 1983. that are important to production agriculture. Ehrenfried Pfeiffer. Lanthorn, East Grinstead, Your Farm - helps you apply what you are reading to Sussex, England. 200 p. your own farm. Whats Next? - wraps up the chapter by helping you Eco-Farming Classics assess your operation and soil. Further Resources - lists people and publications to consult for more information. Agriculture in Transition. 2000. By Donald L. Schriefer. Acres USA, Austin, TX. 238 p.The Nature and Properties of Soils, 12th Edition.1999. By Nyle C. Brady and Ray R. Weil. Prentice From the Soil Up. 2000. By Donald L. Schriefer.Hall, Upper Saddle River, NJ. 881 p. Acres USA, Austin, TX. 274 p. The Nature and Properties of Soils is probably the The Biological Farmer. 2000. By Gary Zimmer. most authoritative and well-known university textbook Acres USA, Austin, TX. 352 p. on soils. Dr. Ray Weil, a soil scientist at the University of Maryland, updated this classic with Crop Roots  The Hidden Half. Circa 1990s. By modern photographs and illustrations as well as Harold Willis. Midwestern Bio-Ag, Blue Mound, additional notes and information that addresses soil WI. 106 p. management from a sustainable viewpoint. It is an excellent, comprehensive resource; a good reference book for the farmers bookshelf. Non-Toxic Farming Handbook. 1998. By Philip Wheeler and Ronald Ward. Acres USA, Metairie,The Fertile Triangle: The Interrelationship of LA. 238 p.Air, Water, and Nutrients in Maximizing SoilProductivity. 1991. By Benjamin Wolf. Food Nourishment Home Grown. 1992. By A.F.Products Press, New York. 463 p. Beddoe. Agro-Bio Systems, Grass Valley, CA. 299 p.Fertilizers and Their Use: A Pocket Guide forExtension Officers, 4th edition Hands-On Agronomy. 1993. By Neal Kinsey andFood & Agriculture Organization (FAO) Charles Walters. Acres USA, Kansas, MO. 352 p.ftp://ftp.fao.org/agl/agll/docs/fertuse.pdf The Enlivened Rock Powders. 1994. By Harvey Lisle. Acres USA, Kansas, MO. 194 p. ATTRA // Resource Guide to Organic & Sustainable Vegetable Production Page 12
  13. 13. 3.12 Soil Fertility Web Links CCOFs Organic Practices and List of Materials http://www.ccof.org/section8.htmThese first three items are the primary web locations forsources of organic fertilizers and approved materials that California Certified Organic Farmers (CCOF) is onecan be used in certified organic production. of the premier organic certification organizations in the country, in operation since 1973. The 1998 CCOF Handbook located on its website contains anSources for Organic Fertilizers and Amendments informative section on organic farming practices and aATTRA listing of approved materials.http://www.attra.org/attra-pub/orgfert.html Use this site primarily as background reading to The ATTRA resource list on organic fertilizers is an become familiar with typical categories of fertilizer extensive listing of dealers and suppliers carrying bulk products and how they fit into a certified organic organic fertilizers. It is organized by category of program. CCOF transferred the official task of fertilizer material: evaluating and listing brand-name products to OMRI in 1997. Phosphate rock Non-phosphate rock minerals minerals The following websites provide valuable information to Animal by-products Plant by-products farmers and Extension specialists who need information Marine products Worms for vermicompost and data on soil management, organic fertilizers, and Composts & blended Compost inoculants & related sustainable fertility topics. fertilizers bioactivators Cover crop seeds Bio-dynamic preparations & homeopathic Commercial Organic Nutrient Recommendations preparations University of Maine Soil Testing Lab Humates & humic Hydrogen peroxide http://anlab.umesci.maine.edu/handout/ acids organ01.HTM Mycorrhizal Microbial inoculants, inoculants enzymes, biocatalysts In these handy tables from University of Maine you Soluble organic fertilizers for drip irrigation & can quickly see how many pounds of organic fertilizer greenhouse fertilization per acre are needed to meet desired pounds of nutrient element per acre; e.g., 670 lbs fish meal equals 60 lbs Note: The ATTRA list was compiled in response to N per acre, 890 lbs fish meal equals 80 lbs N per acre, queries from farmers on where to purchase bulk and 1100 lbs fish meal equals 100 lbs N per acre. organic fertilizers and amendments. It is not an Examples are provided for 10 different organic official list of materials that can be used in certified fertilizers relative to Nitrogen, Phosphorus, and organic production. To verify approved and restricted Potassium. materials, consult the OMRI lists below. An Introduction to Organic Fertilization inOMRIs Brand Name Products Lists SaskatchewanOrganic Materials Review Institute Saskatchewan Agriculture and Food FARMFACTShttp://www.omri.org/brand_list.html http://www.agr.gov.sk.ca/farm_man/crop_prod/ organicfert.asp OMRI is the Organic Materials Review Institute. It provides a technical review of organic crop production Nutrient Content of Fertilizer and Organic materials (fertilizers and pest controls) supplied by Materials manufacturers. Products that receive an Allowed or NC State University Soil Science Regulated status can state that the product is "OMRI [HTML] Listed" and may use the OMRI seal on packaging and literature. http://ces.soil.ncsu.edu/soilscience/publications/ Soilfacts/AG-439-18/ The Brand Name Products List on OMRIs website [PDF] includes crop production materials organized http://ces.soil.ncsu.edu/soilscience/publications/ alphabetically by Generic Material, Supplier, and Soilfacts/ AG-439-18/AG-439-18.pdf Product. Convenient tables with nutrient content of standard commercial fertilizers as well as organic fertilizers and manures. ATTRA // Resource Guide to Organic & Sustainable Vegetable Production Page 13
  14. 14. Sustainable Soil Management Soil Fertility Note 12: Fertilizing with OrganicBy Preston Sullivan, ATTRA Nutrientshttp://www.attra.org/attra-pub/soilmgt.html North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services ATTRAs Sustainable Soil Management publication is http://www.agr.state.nc.us/agronomi/sfn12.htm the most succinct and informative publication of its kind on the web. The concepts and practices Guidelines for Organic Fertilization embedded in this publication provide the fundamental University Of Vermont Extension System, building blocks for a deeper and more complete understanding of soils from a sustainable farming Agricultural and Environmental Testing Lab perspective. http://pss.uvm.edu/pss161/problem/handout.htmlAlternative Soil Testing Laboratories Organic Crop ProductionATTRA Patrick Moore, The Evergreen State Collegehttp://www.attra.org/attra-pub/soil-lab.html Pages 19−32, In: Organic Resource Manual Washington State Department of Agriculture ATTRAs Alternative Soil Testing Laboratories http://www.wa.gov/agr/fsah/organic/ofp.htm resource list organizes soil labs into two broad categories: (1) those that focus on biological assays Nitrogen Management in Field Vegetables including organic matter, humus content, and A Guide to Efficient Fertilisation microbial analysis, and (2) those that focus on mineral HTML analysis and organic fertilizer recommendations. The http://res2.agr.ca/stjean/info/ publicat1_e.htm resource section provides suppliers, books, and web #Technical links that address alternative fertility concepts, soil quality, and on-farm methods of soil and foliar PDF analysis. http://res2.agr.ca/stjean/recherche/azote_e.pdfOrganic Soil Amendments for Sustainable Manual on Integrated Soil Management andAgriculture Conservation PracticesCTAHR, Univ. of Hawaii FAO Land and Water Bulletin 8http://agrss.sherman.hawaii.edu/staff/hue/ ftp://ftp.fao.org/agl/agll/docs/lw8e.pdf [9506 KB]organic.html Microbial Fertilizers in JapanSoil Fertility Management for Organic Crops Michinori NishioUniversity of California, Publication 7249 Food and Fertilizer Technology Centerhttp://anrcatalog.ucdavis.edu/pdf/7249.pdf Taipei City, Taiwan R.O.C http://www.agnet.org/library/abstract/eb430.htmlSoil Management and Soil Quality for OrganicCrops Use of Microbial Inoculants and OrganicUniversity of California, Publication 7248 Fertilizers in Agricultural Productionhttp://anrcatalog.ucdavis.edu/pdf/7248.pdf Food and Fertilizer Technology Center Taipei City, Taiwan R.O.C5-Part Series on Soil Basics http://www.agnet.org/library/article/eb394.htmlUMass Extenion, University of Massachusettshttp://www.umassvegetable.org/soil_crop_pest_mgt/ Sustainable Nitrogen Management in Intensivesoil_nutrient_mgt.html Vegetable Production Food and Fertilizer Technology Center• Hairy Vetch as a Cover Crop Taipei City, Taiwan R.O.C• Soil Basics I: Physical Properties of Soil http://www.agnet.org/library/abstract/eb442.html• Soil Basics II: Chemical Properties of Soil• Soil Basics III: Organic Matter, Key to Management• Soil Basics IV: Putting It All Together• Soil Basics V: Top Dressing and Side Dressing Nitrogen ATTRA // Resource Guide to Organic & Sustainable Vegetable Production Page 14
  15. 15. Natural Resources Conservation Service, or NRCS, isthe USDA agency formerly known as Soil ConservationService, or SCS. The NRCS Soil Quality Institute getsan A+ for the high-quality, farmer-friendly educationalmaterials theyve published in recent years.NRCS Agronomy Technical Notes SeriesSoil Quality Institutehttp://www.statlab.iastate.edu/survey/SQI/agronomy.shtml The Soil Quality Institute website, sponsored by NRCS, features on-line technical notes on soil management topics: Cover Crops; Conservation Crop Rotation; Effects on Soil Quality; Effects of Residue Management, No-Till on Soil Quality; Effects of Soil Quality on Nutrient Efficiency; Herbicides; Legumes and Soil Quality; Effects of Soil Erosion on Soil Productivity.NRCS Soil Quality Information SheetsSoil Quality Institutehttp://www.statlab.iastate.edu/survey/SQI/sqiinfo.html The Soil Quality Institute website, sponsored by NRCS, features on-line information sheets on soil quality topics: Erosion; Sediment Deposition on Cropland; Compaction; Salinization; Soil Biodiversity; Available Water Capacity; Pesticides; Indicators for Soil Quality Evaluation; Organic Matter; Soil Crusts; Aggregate Stability; Infiltration; Soil pH.Soil Biology Primerhttp://www.statlab.iastate.edu/survey/SQI/primer/index.htm The highly regarded Soil Biology Primer is reviewed in the section on soil biology.Soil Quality Test Kithttp://www.statlab.iastate.edu/survey/SQI/kit2.html An 82-page booklet describing procedures for 12 on- farm tests, an interpretive section for each test, data recording sheets, and a section on how to build the kit. ATTRA // Resource Guide to Organic & Sustainable Vegetable Production Page 15
  16. 16. 3.21 Print & Video Resources on Cover Crops SAREP program—was the first Extension Service bulletin to address the benefits of cover crops in the context of modern sustainable farming systems.Cover crops are like the backbone, the linchpin, thecornerstone… of any annual cropping system that seeksto be sustainable or organic. The following two booklets from Pennsylvania and Oregon are a compilation of fact sheets on individual cover cropOrganic farmers rely on cover crops to perform multiple species. Since the selection and use of cover crops isroles and functions on the farm, including soil protection, heavily influenced by growing season, climate, croppingsoil improvement, and insectary habitat. From a fertility systems, and related geographical peculiarities, these twoangle, the cover crop seed can be viewed as a fertilizer booklets provide a nice balance for growing conditions inexpense. the Northeastern and Northwestern United States.When sustainable agriculture became a priority topic for Northeast Cover Crop Handbook. 1994. ByUSDA, land-grant universities, and non-profit institutions Marianne Sarrantonio. Rodale Institute, Kutztown,in the 1980s, cover crops were one of the first items to PA. 118 p.receive significant attention. Lots of time and energy havegone into cover crop research, on-farm trials, and The Rodale Institute was a leader in cover cropinformation dissemination. research and on-farm trials in the 1980s and 90s. The Northeast Cover Crop Handbook is the culminationSome of the key players that helped generate this new of their extension information delivery from that era.material on cover crops include the Sustainable Agriculture Topics covered are: how to choose a cover crop rightNetwork (SAN), the University of California, and the for your operation; building a rotation around coverRodale Institute. crops; choosing the best species for the whole farm; estimating the nitrogen contribution from a greenManaging Cover Crops Profitably, 2nd Edition. manure; looking at soil improvements from cover1998. By the Sustainable Agriculture Network. crops; and lowering the cost of cover cropping. TheSustainable Agriculture Publications, University of book is well written and easy to read with lots ofVermont. 212 p. drawings and charts. The appendix contains detailed management practices for 20 cover crop species, cover Managing Cover Crops Profitably is a compre- crop seed sources, and other information sources. hensive resource on cover crops— an essential desk reference! The introductory section includes Cover Crops in Oregon (EM 8704) articles on uses and benefits of cover crops, Oregon State University followed by chapters on 18 different cover crop species. Charts rate factors for each species Oregon State University Extension Service published a including drought tolerance, nitrogen yield, and 50-page booklet on cover crops in 1998 titled Using seeding rates. The top six high-performing cover Cover Crops in Oregon. Topics include the pros and crops for each region are discussed. Topics cons of cover cropping; how to choose a cover crop; include: selection of the best species for your cover crops in annual and perennial systems; how to location, planning profitable crop rotations, crop estimate nitrogen contributions to a subsequent crop; yield benefits following cover crops, and fertilizer and economic considerations of cover cropping. reduction realized from cover crops. The booklet provides detailed information on specific cover crops, including annual ryegrass, barley, oats, The full-text version can be viewed on the SAN triticale, wheat, buckwheat, cereal rye, common vetch, website: crimson clover, fava bean, field pea, hairy vetch, rapeseed, red clover, subterranean clovers, Managing Cover Crops Profitably, 2nd Edition Sudangrass, and sorghum-Sudangrass hybrids. In http://www.sare.org/handbook/mccp2/index.htm addition, there is a fact sheet on cover crop weed suppression in annual rotations. (List price, $5.50Cover Crops for California Agriculture. 1989. from Oregon State University Publications).By P.R. Miller, et al. University of California,Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources, The complete series of 18 individual facts sheets can also be found on the web in HTML and PDF formats:Leaflet 21471. 24 p. Cover Crop Fact Sheets, Oregon State University This University of California leaflet—supported http://eesc.orst.edu/tango/pubsearch/0124.qry?function by the Jesse Smith Noyes Foundation, the UC =search Davis Student Experimental Farm, and the UC ATTRA // Resource Guide to Organic & Sustainable Vegetable Production Page 16
  17. 17. Cover Crops for Vegetable Production in the still one of the best little primers on grasses andNortheast. 1999. By Lee Stivers. Cornell legumes in print.University Extension Service (142IB244). 12 p. Creative Cover Cropping in Annual Farming A Cornell University publication on cover crops for Systems—Video. 1993. Produced by the University vegetables that addresses: addition of organic matter to of California, Division of Agriculture and Natural soils; improvement of soil tilth and remediation of Resources. compaction; protection of soil from wind and water erosion; recycling plant nutrients; increasing the A 24-minute video that shows a selection of cover biological activity of soil; retention of soil moisture; crops used in various annual cropping systems for the and suppression of weeds, insects, pathogens, and purpose of soil fertility and pest management. (List nematodes. price, $20; available through University of California)Overview of Cover Crops and Green Manures. No-till Vegetables—Video. 1997. By Steve Groff.2000. By Preston Sullivan and Steve Diver. Cedar Meadow Farm, Holtwood, PA.Appropriate Technology Transfer for Rural Areas,Fayetteville, AR. 12 p. Steve Groff, a no-till vegetable farmer inhttp://www.attra.org/attra-pub/ covercrop.html Pennslyvania, makes extensive use of cover crops in combination with no-till vegetable production to raise high-quality tomatoes, pumpkins, broccoli, snap beans, This ATTRA publication provides a summary of the and sweet corn. He uses specialized equipment like a principal uses and benefits of cover crops and green rolling stalk chopper to knock down and crimp the manures, followed by a listing of key resources. cover crops, thus allowing him to plant vegetables into a killed cover crop mulch. This cropping systemSustainable Production of Fresh-Market requires post-emergent herbicides, but at greatlyTomatoes with Organic Mulches. 1997. By Aref reduced rates compared to conventional productionAbdul-Baki and John R. Teasdale. USDA Farmers systems. After several years of no-till production theBulletin No. 2279. 23 p. soils are very mellow and easy to plant into. (Videohttp://www.ars.usda.gov/is/np/tomatoes.html price, $21.95 + $3.00 shipping from Cedar Meadow Farm). This USDA Farmers Bulletin features the no-till vegetable cropping system developed by scientists at Using Cover Crops in Conservation Production the USDA-ARS Vegetable Laboratory in Beltsville, Systems—Video. 1997. By Seth Dabney, USDA- Maryland. This system relies on hairy vetch ARS National Sedimentation Lab in Oxford, MS. established in the fall, followed by a mow-down treatment the following spring to prepare a no-till bed An 11-minute video on cover cropping systems in the to transplant tomatoes and other vegetable crops into. Deep South featuring clover species and no-till production methods. (Costs about $10 through Print copies may be ordered from: Shepherd Publications in Memphis, TN). USDA/ARS Vegetable Lab Rm. 213, B-10A BARC-West Beltsville, MD 20705 mcgahan@ars.usda.gov On-line in PDF format at: http://www.ars.usda.gov/is/np/ SustainableTomato.pdfFeed the Soil. 1982. By Edwin McLeod. OrganicAgriculture Research Institute, Graton, CA. 209 p. The classic tale of Hylas the Hare who goes to work as a seasonal farmer, only to bump into Mr. Earthworm who teaches Hylas all about green manures and soil biology and the importance of “feeding the soil.” It is ATTRA // Resource Guide to Organic & Sustainable Vegetable Production Page 17
  18. 18. 3.22 Cover Crop Web Links Overview of Cover Crops and Green Manures. ATTRA Green Manures http://www.attra.org/attra-pub/covercrop.html http://www.attra.org/attra-pub/PDF/covercrop.pdfThe Basics of Green ManuringP. Warman Cover Crops – VegetablesEAP Publication 51, Ecological Agriculture Projectshttp://eap.mcgill.ca/Publications/EAP51.htm Commercial Vegetable Production: Cover Crops for Vegetable GrowersGreen Manures Kansas State University, MF2343Greenmount College of Agriculture and Horticulture, http://www.oznet.ksu.edu/library/hort2/Samplers/Northern Ireland MF2343.htmhttp://www.greenmount.ac.uk/organic/manures.htm A 28-page fact sheet from K-State, published in 1998.Catch Crops and Green Manuring in Ecological One of the better Extension publications on coverAgriculture crops for vegetables geared to a specific region.Proceedings of the Ecological Agriculture NJF-Seminar 166 Multiple Impacts Cover Cropshttp://zeus.bibul.slu.se/documents/slu/ John Luna, Oregon State Universityekologiskt_lantbruk/EKL05/EKL05Z.HTM http://ifs.orst.edu/pubs/ multiple_impacts_cover_cro.html Cover Crops – General In addition to the Cover Crop Fact Sheets published by Oregon State University, John Luna and associatesManaging Cover Crops Profitably, 2nd Edition have a special topics web page on use of cover cropsSustainable Agriculture Network in sustainable vegetable production; especially notehttp://www.sare.org/handbook/mccp2/index.htm the research results on strip tillage.Cover Crop Fact Sheets Cover Crops for Sustainable VegetableOregon State University Productionhttp://eesc.orst.edu/tango/pubsearch/ Debbie Roos0124.qry?function=search http://www.geocities.com/RainForest/Canopy/1118/Michigan Cover Crops Cover Crops & Green Manure Crops forMichigan State University & Kellogg Biological Vegetable FarmsStation Ohio Vegetable Production Guide 2000http://www.kbs.msu.edu/Extension/Covercrops/home http://www.ag.ohio-state.edu/~ohioline/b672/.htm b672_1.html An impressive and valuable collection of information Cover Crops For Weed Control In Lettuce sheets and research reports on cover crops used in New Alchemy Quarterly, No. 40 association with vegetables and row crops. Mark Schonbeck, Judy Browne, and Ralph DeGregorioCover Crops http://www.fuzzylu.com/greencenter/q40/Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and weed9009.htmRural Affairshttp://www.gov.on.ca:80/OMAFRA/english/crops/ Cropping Systems of Intensive Desert Vegetablefacts/ cover_crops01/covercrops.htm Production University of California, Riverside• Adaptation and Use of Cover Crops http://cnas.ucr.edu/~bps/hcoopextcrop.html• Choosing a Cover Crop• Cover Crop Types ATTRA // Resource Guide to Organic & Sustainable Vegetable Production Page 18
  19. 19. Cover Crops for Soil Improvement in An Evaluation of Cover Crops to Reduce theHorticultural Crops Potential for Environmental Damage fromAlan Ware, Kerr Center for Sustainable Agriculture Intensively Cultivated Soilshttp://www.kerrcenter.com/kerrweb/html/pub4.html Nova Scotia Department of Agriculture and Fisheries http://www.gov.ns.ca/nsaf/rs/greenplan/resource/conSummer Cover Crops for Tomato Production in servation/035.htmSouth Floridahttp://www.imok.ufl.edu/veghort/pubs/workshop/ Legumes and Crop RotationsBryan99.htm Crop Rotations for Vegetables and Row CropsGreen Manure Crops in Organic Vegetable Steve Diver, ATTRAProduction http://ncatark.uark.edu/~steved/rotation.htmlDanish Institute of Plant and Soil Sciencehttp://zeus.bibul.slu.se/documents/njf/ Soil Improvement with Legumes includingutredn_rapporter/NUR114/NUR114N.HTM Legumes in Crop Rotations Saskatchewan Agriculture and FoodCover Cropping in Potato Production http://www.agr.gov.sk.ca/land_wat_clim/soilEAP Publication 71, Ecological Agriculture Projects Scs0395.asphttp://eap.mcgill.ca/Publications/EAP71.htm Organic Rotations Practiced Interseeding Cover Crops Ohio State University, Special Circular 174-00 http://www.ag.ohio-state.edu/~ohioline/ sc174/Observations on Interseeding Cover Crops sc174_9.htmlVernon Grubinger, University of Vermonthttp://ctr.uvm.edu/ctr/intrseed.htm Legume Green Manuring Alberta Agriculture, Food and Rural DevelopmentInterseedings in Vegetable Production http://www.agric.gov.ab.ca/agdex/100/2300202.htmlChantal Foulds, REAP Canadahttp://eap.mcgill.ca/MagRack/SF/ Crop Rotations in Organic AgricultureSummer%2089%20D.htm Andreas de Neergaard http://www.kursus.kvl.dk/shares/ea/02Materials/Relay Intercropping Brassicas into Chile and Crop-rotations.PDFSweet CornNew Mexico State University, Guide A–609 An Organic Vegetable Crop Rotation Aimed athttp://cahe.nmsu.edu/pubs/_a/A-609.html Self-Sufficiency in Nitrogen K. Thorup-Kristensen, Danish Institute of Catch Crops – Sucking Up Residual Nitrates Agricultural Sciences http://www.agrsci.dk/pvf/gronsager/ktk/ oeko%5Fgronsagssaedskifte/A Farmers Guide To Reducing Nutrient Loss hp%2Dcrop%20rotation.htmlUsing Catch CropsJanet Wallace, Nova Scotia Organic GrowersAssociationhttp://gks.com/nccrp/Finalr.php3Management of Residual Nitrogen with CoverCropsTechnical Notes, Agronomy 38. Pullman PlantMaterials Center.http://www.wsu.edu/pmc_nrcs/technotes/agronomy/tntag38.htm ATTRA // Resource Guide to Organic & Sustainable Vegetable Production Page 19
  20. 20. 3.23 UC-SAREP Cover Crop Resource Selecting the Right Cover Crop Gives Multiple BenefitsThe UC-SAREP program at University of California is a UC-SAREPleader in cover crop research and information http://www.sarep.ucdavis.edu/ccrop/CCPubs/dissemination. The massive resources UC-SAREP has SelectingCoverCrop.htmldevoted to the integration of cover crops into annual andperennial cropping systems is astounding. These materials A 4-page web article that discusses: adding andare so extensive and informative, they deserve their own conserving nitrogen, water use by cover crops, pestspecial section. management, cover crops in annual cropping systems, self-reseeding cover crops, and potential advantagesUC SAREP Cover Crop Resource Page and disadvantages of cover crops.http://www.sarep.ucdavis.edu/sarep/ccrop/ Survey of Annual Crop Growers Regarding This is the database of all databases when it comes to Cover Crops cover crops. Includes over 5,000 items gleaned from UC-SAREP more than 600 separate sources, including journal http://www.sarep.ucdavis.edu/newsltr/v7n3/sa-8.htm articles, conference proceedings, standard textbooks, unpublished data, and personal communications from researchers and farmers. The information in the database concerns the management and effects of more than 32 species of plants usable as cover crops. More than 400 different cover crop images are also available for on-line viewing. One limitation—the database is regionally geared to the Mediterranean climate of California. Ideally, each region of the U.S. should enjoy such site-specific information.Cover Cropping in Row and Field Crop SystemsUC-SAREPhttp://www.sarep.ucdavis.edu/ccrop/slideshows/rfshow01.htm An on-line educational slide series that provides visual images and text describing the benefits and uses of cover cropping in annual crops like vegetables; 52 slides.Cover Crop Biology: A Mini-ReviewRobert L. Bugg, UC-SAREPhttp://www.sarep.ucdavis.edu/ccrop/ccres/35.htm A 10-page web article that reviews several aspects of cover crop biology: seeds, seedlings, root zone biology, nutrient uptake, the fate of cover-crop- derived nitrogen, community dynamics, and allelopathy. ATTRA // Resource Guide to Organic & Sustainable Vegetable Production Page 20
  21. 21. Eight Points to RememberSamples of UC-SAREP Cover Crop Researchand Education Summaries 1. For many farms, cover crops offer the only practical means of supplying the organic matter needed to maintain soil physical, chemical, and biological properties. Barnyard manure and other manuresRelease of Nitrogen From a Leguminous Cover cannot meet the requirements of extensive areas.Crop and the Subsequent Utilization by BellPepper 2. Cultivation decreases the amount of organic matter inRichard Smith, Louise Jackson, and Phil Foster the soil and increases soil erosion on sloping land.Sustainable Agriculture Research & EducationProgram, University of California 3. As organic matter decays, it provides nutrient elements for succeding crops. Cover crop legumes substantiallyhttp://www.sarep.ucdavis.edu/ccrop/ccres/2.HTM increase the nitrogen available to the subsequent crop.Fall Planted Cover Crops May Improve Tomato 4. The value of a cover crop is determined primarily byYields the amount of organic matter and nitrogen it will addGene Miyao and Paul Robins to the soil. Therefore, use the crop that will produceSustainable Agriculture Research & Education the greatest growth in the particular region and theProgram, University of California alloted time.http://www.sarep.ucdavis.edu/ccrop/ccres/1999/3.htm 5. Most winter cover crops should be planted with irrigation, since early seeding is necessary for a good stand and a lack of rain coupled with no irrigation canCover Crop Use in Vegetable Production prevent satisfactory results.in the Southern California DesertsChad Hutchinson and Milt McGiffen 6. Most winter cover crops should be seeded before theSustainable Agriculture Research & Education first of November. Seedbed preparation is important.Program, University of Californiahttp://www.sarep.ucdavis.edu/ccrop/ccres/1999/ 7. The best way to work a cover crop in is with a heavy4.htm cover crop disk. Two or three diskings may be necessary. In an orchard, you need not completelyNon-Leguminous Cover Crops In Cool-Season incorporate the cover crop.Vegetable Crop Systems 8. Allow legume cover crops to grow as long as possibleSustainable Agriculture Research & Education before working them into the soil.Program, University of Californiahttp://www.sarep.ucdavis.edu/ccrop/ccres/1996/ Source:3.HTM Cover Crops for California Agriculture. 1989. By P.R.In-Field Insectaries for Vegetable Crops Miller, et al. University of California, Division ofBill Chaney Agriculture and Natural Resources, Leaflet 21471.Sustainable Agriculture Research & Education 24 p.Program, University of Californiahttp://www.sarep.ucdavis.edu/ccrop/ccres/1996/7.HTMNon-Leguminous Cover Crops To Reduce NitrateLeaching In Vegetable Cropping SystemsSustainable Agriculture Research & EducationProgram, University of Californiahttp://www.sarep.ucdavis.edu/ccrop/ccres/1996/13.HTM ATTRA // Resource Guide to Organic & Sustainable Vegetable Production Page 21

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