“Telling Your Story”, a discussion group meeting for farm women.


“Telling Your Story”, a meeting for farm women, will be held on Tuesday, June 4, 2019 at Cornell Cooperative Extension, 24 Martin Rd, Voorheesville, NY 12186.

The Capital Area Agriculture and Horticulture Program and Cornell Cooperative Extension Albany County will host the meeting, which runs from 6:00 to 8:30 pm and is intended for farm women who wish to learn the key skill of telling their farm business story as a way of engaging customers and the public.

Inspired by Annie’s Project, a working group of farm women selected this topic as a key skill they wanted to learn. We invite other farm women to join us as we continue our women’s discussion group, which meets to provide support, programming and networking opportunities.

Making a personal connection is a crucial element for businesses to use when competing in the rough and tumble world. Steve Hadcock, CCE educator for New Farmers and Market Development, will work with the discussion group participants to develop messages for their use on social media and in their marketing campaigns.

As messages about food, local agriculture and other concerns continue to be diluted by misinformation, farm business owners must step up their game to produce materials and stories that engage and educate customers and the general public. Finding key points to convey the message you want everyone to understand is part of that process.  

The meeting is free and reservations are not required. However, a call/text or email ahead to Sandy would be helpful in planning for handouts and space. Call 518-380-1498 or 1-800-548-0881 or email sab22@cornell.edu.

Scouting Updates: Aphid Management in Greenhouses

by CAAHP Ornamental Horticulture Educator, Lindsey Christianson

Many of you have already seen and possibly already treated for aphids in your greenhouses, but with the cool weather keeping everything closed up, interiors are perfect for aphid populations to rebuild. If you use biological control agents for aphid management, you’ll want to release them as soon as possible.

How do you decide which beneficial bug to release?

 First things first: Are you finding green peach, melon, or foxglove aphids? Cornell University’s Dr. John Sanderson put together a quick guide (pdf) to help identify these three aphids that will probably be the most likely to show up in your greenhouses.

I found these foxglove aphids on fuschia in a greenhouse on May 1. This species can be distinguished from green peach aphids and melon aphids by 1) the antennae that are longer than their body, and 2) the dark green patches on their posterior, around the cornicles.

Melon aphids are generally the smallest of the three, and range in color from a very light yellow to a dark green/almost black. The easiest way to distinguish these from foxglove and green peach aphids is that the entire length of their cornicles are black.

Green peach aphids exhibit a range of colors also, but have shorter antennae that don’t extend the full length of their body.

The predatory midge Aphidoletes aphidimyza is a great way to get started in aphid management without necessarily having to know which kind of aphid you have. The larvae aren’t picky about which aphids they’re eating, and they’re voracious feeders.

Native lady beetles, Adalia spp. and  Hippodamia spp., are also recommended. However, as generalist predators that are fairly large, they’ll eat just about anything, including each other and other beneficial bugs, so you may not want to add them to your biocontrol mix if you’re using midge larvae.

Parasitoid wasps hold a special place in my heart as I used to work with a number of them for invasive species management. But there are a few things to take into consideration before you release them into your greenhouse. You typically want to start releasing wasps prophylactically. Many of these wasps have a difficult time stinging if aphids are crowded on a leaf, or they can get stuck in the honeydew of aphid populations that have been around awhile. Wasps are pickier about the species of aphids they attack, so these may not be a good place to start if you’re not sure which aphids you typically find in your greenhouses. If you know that you usually find green peach or melon aphids, you’ll want Aphidius colemani. If you have had more issues with foxglove aphids, go with Aphidius ervi. If you’re not sure, you can release both species at the same time and they won’t interfere with each other. Make sure to at least temporarily take down your sticky cards around the release date because, like other hymenoptera, they’re attracted to blue and yellow.

For more biological control options, check out Dr. Lily Calderwood’s factsheet “Getting Started with Biocontrol”.

Chemical options:

If you need to knock down a large aphid population and need to go the chemical route, UMass has a table of active ingredients that are effective against aphids and approved for use on greenhouse ornamentals. Since this information is out of Massachusetts, there may be some that aren’t registered in New York, so be sure to check on NYSPAD to make sure these products are okay to use in New York.

On the NYSPAD homepage, search “Products”.

Then you can search by the product’s trade name, or Advance Search to look up by active ingredient.

If you’ve already released biological control agents into your greenhouses, chemical applications will knock them back too, so you’ll have to keep a close eye on your aphid populations since those tend to bounce back more quickly than the beneficial insect populations.

New Resource Page – Becoming a Certified Pesticide Applicator in New York State

Applying for a pesticide applicator’s license can be confusing. Sometimes people don’t know where to start looking for information.

CAAHP’s Senior Commercial Ornamental Horticulture Educator, Lindsey Christianson, has written a resource page, showing would-be applicants where and how to find the information they need to start the application process for a pesticide applicator’s license.

Becoming a Certified Pesticide Applicator in New York State

Upcoming Event – Animal Regulation Issues for Local Governments, April 22, 2019

April 22, 2019, Animal Regulation Issues for Local Governments
At multiple locations, see below for specific addresses.
6:30 – 8:30 pm

$10 per person. Pre-registration and payment in advance are required. Class size is limited though a minimum number of participants are needed.
To register: https://tinyurl.com/AnimalRegulationIssues
More information, contact Sandy Buxton at 518-380-1498 or contact 518-765-3518/cce-caahp@cornell.edu

This 2 hour multi-site WEBCAST meeting will provide information and resources available to local governments as they investigate issues related to enacting regulations for agriculture and animal owner-ship. With urban farming trends and more consumers concerned about their food sources, animals have infiltrated into village lots and beyond.

This class will be broadcast to 4 different locations, serving as a valuable springboard to local governments gathering knowledge and information.

CCE-Albany Co., 24 Martin Rd, Voorheesville, NY
CCE-Columbia-Greene Co., 479 St. Rte 66, Hudson, NY
CCE-Rensselaer Co., 61 State St, Troy, NY
CCE-Washington Co. Meeting Room, Annex 2, 411 Lower Main St, Hudson Falls, NY

Summer Beef Production and Marketing Series

Join us for one or all of the Summer Beef Production and Marketing Series!  How does our region of New York State fit into the overall picture of beef production?  How can you improve production and make sure you are marketing into the right channels?  Join us to learn more from experienced producers and beef experts from a cross-section of the industry. 


Backgrounding Beef Cattle

Backgrounding Beef Cattle will be held on June 13, 2019, 6:00-8:00pm at the CN Tomell Cattle Company, 142 Rock Road, Berne, NY 12023.  Nick Tommell and his family do an excellent job sourcing cattle from across NYS, backgrounding them, and finishing them in western feedlots.  Mike Baker, the Cornell University Beef Specialist, will also present on backgrounding in NYS and opportunities. 

To take advantage of the early registration price of $10, please register by June 11, 2019.  Register online at http://tinyurl.com/BackgroundingBeefCattle.

Registration at the door is $15 per person. If you would like to register by phone or have questions, please contact (518) 765-3518 or cce-caahp@cornell.edu

FSA Borrower Training Credits are approved for this class.

All about Stockers

All about Stockers will be held on July 11, 2019 from 6:00-8:00pm at Diamond Hills Farm, 80 Angus Lane, Hudson, NY 12534.  Are you interested in purchasing a group of cattle in the spring, feeding them all summer, and selling them in the fall?  Join us to learn key points to consider for healthy animals and profitability.  Presenters include Jason Detzel, Ulster County Senior Resource Livestock Educator and owner of Diamond Hills Farm, and Mike Baker, the Cornell University Beef Specialist.   

To take advantage of the early registration price of $10, please register by July 9, 2019. Register online at http://tinyurl.com/AllAboutStockers.

Registration at the door is $15 per person. If you would like to register by phone or have questions, please contact (518) 765-3518 or cce-caahp@cornell.edu

FSA Borrower Training Credits are approved for this class.

Seedstock Beef Production

Seedstock Beef Production will be held August 9, 2019 from 6:00-8:00pm at Trowbridge Farms, 1192 County Route 22, Ghent, NY 12075.  Well known nationwide for their high quality animals, join Phil Trowbridge and family to learn the ins and outs of selling elite genetics, which include heifer calves, cows, bulls, embryo packages, and more.  We will also be joined by the staff from New York State Agriculture and Markets to discuss the new regulations on tagging and identification of cattle. 

To take advantage of the early registration price of $10, please register by August 7, 2019. Register online at http://tinyurl.com/SeedstockBeefProduction.

Registration at the door is $15 per person. If you would like to register by phone or have questions, please contact (518) 765-3518 or cce-caahp@cornell.edu

FSA Borrower Training Credits are approved for this class.

Cow Calf Production and the Freezer Trade

Cow Calf Production and the Freezer Trade will be held on September 12, 2019 at Tilldale Farms, 22 Tilley Lane, Hoosick Falls, NY 12090 from 6:00-8:00pm.  The Tilley family has transitioned from a dairy to multi-species livestock farm, selling meat directly to consumers at farmer’s markets and retail shops.  The farm focuses on grass-fed Red Devon Cattle, as well as poultry and pork production.   We will also be joined by Steve Hadcock, Beginning Farmer and Market Development Educator and staff from New York State Agriculture and Markets to discuss the New York State Cattle Health Assurance Program.   

To take advantage of the early registration price of $10, please register by September 10, 2019.  Register online at http://tinyurl.com/CowCalfProductionFreezerTrade.

Registration at the door is $15 per person. If you would like to register by phone or have questions, please contact (518) 765-3518 or cce-caahp@cornell.edu

FSA Borrower Training Credits are approved for this class.

Llama and Alpaca Parasite Management Workshop, May 16, 2019

May 16, 2019, Llama and Alpaca Parasite Management Workshop
To take advantage of the early registration price of $10, please register by May 14, 2019. Registration at the door is $15 per person. Register online at https://tinyurl.com/LlamaAlpacaWorkshop
or contact (518) 765-3518 or cce-caahp@cornell.edu
Learn how to keep your camelids healthy, happy, and free from parasites!  In addition to the farmers of Sweet and Savory Farmette, our guest speaker Emaly Leak of Autumn Hill Llamas and Fiber, will guide us through ways to prevent parasites through management, how to tell if our llamas or alpacas have parasites, how to run your own fecal analysis with a microscope, and strategies to treat your animals if they do have parasites. 

Second Annual Spring Turn Out Grazier Meeting, May 1, 2019

May 1, 2019, Second Annual Spring Turn Out Grazier Meeting 
1:00-4:30 pm.

To take advantage of the early registration price of $10, please register by April 29th, 2019. Registration at the door is $15 per person. 

For your convenience, you can register online at https://tinyurl.com/SpringTurnOut or contact (518) 765-3518 or cce-caahp@cornell.edu.

FSA Borrower Training Credits are approved for this class.

Join Cornell Cooperative Extension and St. Croix Farm (14 Ridge Rd, Valley Falls, NY 12185) on May 1st, 2019 from 1:00-4:30pm for the Second Annual Spring Turn Out Grazier Meeting! With a full schedule of speakers, you are sure to find new information that you can put to use on your farm. 
At this meeting you will learn:
  • How beef production in our region of NYS fits into the overall landscape of beef in both the state and country
  • Baleage production and use on your farm 
  • Prevention and control of internal parasites in cattle and small ruminants
  • Pasture fly control strategies for all livestock
  • Basics of direct marketing your products online and in person
Speakers will include Mike Baker, Cornell University Beef Specialist; Steve Hadcock, Agricultural Entrepreneur and Market Development Educator; Aaron Gabriel, Soils and Crops Educator; Ashley Pierce, Commercial Livestock Educator; and Ken Wise, New York State Integrated Pest Management Program Educator.

Getting Started with Poultry, April 18, 2019

April 18, 2019, Getting Started with Poultry
6:00-7:30 pm
Cost: $10 per person if you register and pay by April 16, 2019. $15 per person at the door.
Register by phone at (518) 765-3518 or email

Are you interested in raising chickens, turkey, ducks, or other species of poultry? Join us to learn more about the basics to help you get started. Topics will include where to get your birds, species and breeds, animal care and handling, health, and products from your birds. 

Part Time Farmer Tax School Rescheduled to February 26, 2019!

The Part-Time Farmer Tax School meeting that was scheduled for January 29, 2019 has been rescheduled due to snow – so there’s still time to sign up! 

The class will be held on February 26, 2019 at CCE Washington County, from 5:30 pm until 9:00 pm. Full details are below.

February 26, 2019, Part Time Farmer Tax School

CCE of Washington County, Annex 2 Meeting Room, 415 Lower Main Street, Hudson Falls, NY 12839
5:30 – 9:00 pm
Cost: $20.00 per person

Register online:https://tinyurl.com/PartTimeFarmerTax, or to register by phone, call 518-765-3518.
Do you have any of these questions:
How much farm income do I need to deduct it on my taxes?
What form(s) do I need to complete?
What, if any, tax management strategy should I have for my farm business?


Sandy Buxton and Steve Hadcock, of Cornell Cooperative Extension’s Capital Area Ag & Hort Program, will be prepared to answer these and other tax related questions for you during this meeting.  Light dinner will be served.

Capital District Direct Marketing Conference, February 28, 2019

Have you, as a direct marketer of farm products, seen a change in your sales?  Would you like to learn ways to potentially increase sales? Join us at the Capital District Direct Marketing Conference, to be held on Thursday, February 28 at Cornell Cooperative Extension of Albany County, 24 Martin Road, Voorheesville, NY 12186.  

The conference begins at 9:00 AM and ends at 3:30 PM, and is presented by Cornell Cooperative Extension Albany County and the Capital Area Agriculture & Horticulture Program.

Presentations that will help participants learn how to attract more customers and implement or enhance their point of sale (POS) system will be given by Christopher Wayne, Erik Hassert, and Michael Hurwitz from GrowNYC. 

The morning will be devoted to customer behavior at the market.  What can farmers do to attract more shoppers to their stands? How can farmers actively market their products in and out of farmers markets? How can farmers better understand customer behavior at the market, and how can this information be used to increase customer satisfaction? 

By using customer research performed by grocery stores and large-scale food retailers while building on more than 40 years of institutional knowledge, Conference presenters will share a tool for measuring customer behavior at farmers markets and developing strategies to increase sales and customer satisfaction. Over the past three years, this tool has been used by over 50 producers to implement strategies that successfully increased their sales at market.

During the afternoon session, presenters will talk about POS (point of sale) systems.  As the economy continues moving toward more cashless currency, a POS system will become a necessity. At its most complex, a POS system is a powerful business tool for gathering comprehensive marketing information.

As a farmer, can you:

  • Accurately describe the amount of your average sale?
  • Describe how much a discount increases the gross sales of one of your products?
  • Define what time of day/week/year you make the most gross sales?
  • Name your most/least profitable products?

Many POS systems can provide this information and more. 

Admission to the Capital District Direct Marketing Conference is $30 per person if paid in advance. The admission price at the door is $35 per person. Admission covers meals and materials.

Register online at https://tinyurl.com/RegDirectMarketing. To register by phone, call 518-765-3518. 

Cornell Cooperative Extension is collaborating with Hudson Mohawk Resource Conservation and Development Council to offer this direct marketing conference