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Cooperative Extension website for farmers and gardeners

By Debbie Roos
Posted Tuesday, March 14, 2006

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Pittsboro, NC - Ever find yourself in your garden staring down an insect you couldn’t identify? Or wondering what was eating your beans or causing your peppers to wilt? Would you like to know when is the best time to plant peas and other favorite crops in our region? Well you are in luck because all this information and much more can be found on Chatham County’s North Carolina Cooperative Extension website “Growing Small Farms”. This award-winning website features over 300 pages of locally-relevant farming and gardening information with hundreds of photos and links.

Here in Chatham County we are blessed to have a thriving community of diversified farms producing vegetables, flowers, herbs, fruits, meats, cheese, ornamental plants and so much more. Learn all about these farms and how to support a strong local food system on the Growing Small Farms website. Take a virtual tour of area farms, find a Community Supported Agriculture farm, learn which local businesses are buying from local producers.

The farmers’ market section, updated bi-weekly, highlights what’s in season at our two local farmers’ markets. The “Farm Photo of the Week” provides a glimpse of the daily life on a farm and is a great feature to share with kids – they can see a goat being born, or watch how cheese is made, or learn how turkeys and chickens are raised on pasture.

The Grower Resource List provides information on helpful books, websites, organizations, and suppliers of everything from organic seed to natural fertilizers, chicks, equipment, plants, and much more. Visitors to the website will learn about monthly workshops on production and marketing and be able to access the bi-monthly Plow Sharing newsletter. The Web Resources section features over 500 links to on-line publications on over 30 topics including greenhouse production, vegetables, beekeeping, alternative energy, pest management, soil management, permaculture and much more. Study over 200 photos of local pest and beneficial insects and learn how to manage them organically.

You will find all of this and more on the Growing Small Farms website at

The site had over 100,000 visitors and 4.6 million hits in 2005 – take a look and see what North Carolina Cooperative Extension is doing for you!

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