Farming, Gardening, and Nature Blogs I Like to Follow

Early morning view of the front pasture at my farm.
It is a rainy Saturday afternoon and I was reading over some interesting blogs and thought my followers might want to know about a few of them.  So here are some favorites:

Flower Garden Girl
You want to read a blog that will put a smile on your face?  And you like gardening?  Well then you have to check out Anna's blog.  She is a North Carolina gardener with an optimistic attitude, a delightful style of writing, and a fantastic eye for photographing all things botanical.  She has a new home that she is landscaping right now and you can follow her progress on the blog. She also sells delightful little, hand painted birdhouses.

Hop 'n Blueberry Farm
This is another blog that will make you smile.  Van Burnette is a character. I will put that right out here in print where he can read it. He's a loveable character with a contagious enthusiasm for trying new things, like growing blueberries, hops, ramps, woodland botanicals, and butterflies.  Yes, I said butterflies.  Van lives and farms on land that has been in his family for generations in Black Mountain, NC.  Van likes to share what he has learned and does this through his blog and tours on his farm.  Check it out, I'm sure you'll enjoy it.

Southern Appalachian Hops Guild
If you follow my blog, you know I'm trying to help the North Carolina hops industry grow and prosper.  Chris Reedy is doing the same, just taking a different angle.  He is leading the Southern Appalachian Hops Guild and maintains this blog for them.  In it he shares much of what we are all learning about growing hops in the Southeast, helps promote the local hop growers, and provides information about hop related events.

Windy Hill Hops and Farm
I haven't been following this blog very long, so I can't tell you too much about it.  It is a small farm in Southern Illinois where organic hops, herbs, and vegetables are being grown.  Sounds right up my alley, doesn't it?  What interests me the most is that the writer is documenting all the questions that arise as the hops progress through the season.

Fennario Farm and Apothecary
One of my employees, Amy Hamilton, started her own farming venture in Madison County, NC this spring with her boyfriend, Gabe.  This blog tells the story of their first experience growing and selling vegetables and medicinal herbs. Amy is the research specialist in my program and spends much of her time there advising farmers.  This experience has already helped her assist farmers because now she knows first hand how difficult it is to make a profit working the land.

Hopesay Glebe Farm
I like to follow what people are doing in other countries and this is a sweet, certified organic, ten acre farm in Shropshire in the United Kingdom that would be a fine example for another wanting to create a diversified small farm.  They have laying hens, sheep, vegetables, high-tunnels, and also raise bees, off-site, for honey. They do direct sales. The blog always has great pictures that I find very informative.

Jim Long's Garden
If you love herbs and read any of the herb literature, then you are probably familiar with Jim Long.  He is an amazing gardener, a wonderful writer, an entertaining and informative speaker, and all around fun person.  He has a delightful blog that not only covers what's happening in his own Long Creek Herb Farm in the Missouri Ozarks, but also covers his interesting travels and people he meets.

Western NC Vegetables and Small Fruit News
This is my favorite, serious professional university Extension blog.  Written by area extension agent, Sue Colucci.  She covers three western NC counties, Henderson, Haywood, and Buncombe.  She is a plant pathologist, very knowledgeable about organic agriculture, and just a delightful person all around.  If you want to keep aware of what is happening with veggies and small fruits in western NC, this is the blog to follow.  She is also part of our hops team and has created a page just for hops.

Western North Carolina Green Industry News
I don't usually follow the green industry (nursery, turf, landscaping, etc.), but I learn so much from this one that I follow it.  It is written by three local NC extension agents: Cliff Ruth in Henderson county, Amanda Stone in Buncombe county, and Tim Mathews in Haywood county.  They work hard to keep you informed about diseases, insects, new plants, grant opportunitities, and educational programming.

NC Small Fruit, Specialty Crop, and Tobacco IPM
This is a more serious blog than the ones listed above.  It is written by my university colleague, Dr. Hannah Barrack, an entomologist at NC State University in Raleigh. Hannah has an interest in organic agriculture and is working with us on the hops project.  She uses this blog to keep North Carolina farmers informed about insect pests on small fruits, tobacco, and specialty crops and provides information on how to take an integrated approach to managing them.  She also provides links to other relevant resources.

Ocean State Hops
I really enjoy following the progress of many of the small hop yards that are developing across the country.  There are so many people who say you can't grow hops anywhere but in the Pacific Northwest.  Well, I guess they forgot to mention that to these folks!  They will never be huge, mechanized hop growers, but they have a market niche in Rhode Island and a wonderful blog.  Great pictures.

Little Farm on the Mountain
This blog is written by a strong woman in Tennessee with a passion for farming and writing.  She chronicles her farm life with humor and honesty.  At the time of this writing she was suffering a bit of burn out and was going to take a few weeks off.  Even so, I encourage you to check out what she has posted previously check back for new postings.

Tiny Farm Blog
Here you can follow the story of a very small "organic farm" in Ontario, Canada. He started from scratch in 2002, moved the farm in 2008, and is now farming fulltime.  I put "organic" in quotes because I don't think he has certified the new farm yet, and actually seems to be reconsidering that.  Anyway, I've learned a lot about ways to improve efficiency on a very tiny farm.  (this is not to be confused with my own home blog which is Our Tiny Farm in Western North Carolina

Outside Clyde
This blog is not about a commercial farm or garden.  It is an ongoing, and frequently updated, story about Christopher who lives in Clyde, NC.  He is building his own house and gardens and documents it all well.  He is also a landscaper and the most amazing photographer!  If you want to see the beauty of Haywood County, NC and surrounding areas, this is the blog to follow.

Saratoga Woods and Waterways
This is another blog that I follow because I am just in awe of the beauty she sees and captures with her camera.  Jackie Donnelly lives in Saratoga Springs, NY which is an amazing place that I would love to visit someday.  I never would have known about it if it weren't for this blog.

Labels: , , ,