Friday, May 18, 2018

SARE Tree Leaf Fodder for Livestock Project blog

PLEASE LOOK FOR "2018 Offerings" post, which is my 3 Streams Farm Home Page. 

Dear Josh, Any May, and those Curious about our Funded Farmer Research in the Woods,

Today 7 goats entered our beautifully fenced (thank you Josh and Any May for your parts in that) but as yet uncharged (chargers coming today, so they say) Acre ‘Air Meadow’ SARE (Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education)Demo Plot, for the first time.  I took lots of pictures and video clips, to commemorate.  The sunshine sparkled down through leaves, and the black flies became invisible in idyllic movie-land. 

Upon entering, I had to retrieve each goat from their immediate excited eating of ferns, myanthemum, rue, etc., to introduce the Weighing Protocol.  Rubix (1 month old yesterday) chose to be first, as he thought to play ‘king of the hill’ with me – the scale is the ‘hill’.  He weighed 20 ¾ lbs. (really?  Wow!).   Then the biggest trick was to get him to stay off the scale when not his turn.  So if I recorded anyone to be 20 lbs. heavier than usual in the first weighing, we know why. 

The whole weighing took 20 minutes, including fetching each out of speed browsing.   Then began what was supposed to be 3 hrs. of poop and urination counting and collections.  The aim is to create a standard weight/hr. to subtract when computing how much they ate, by weighing them.  Keeping eyes on all 7 was tricky; perhaps some urinations were clandestine (especially when they convinced me to set a ladder on some small beech and behead the trees, to improve their now slower browsing).

At two urinations sighted in a 2 hr. period, and none collected (over too fast), I suspect we lost more liquid to the black flies, who came out in full force just today.  They are way too small for the platform scale, plus hard to catch without losing all that liquid AGAIN.  So Farmer Research it is – inexact science. 

Poops, on (or should I say “in” more literally) the other hand (in an old plastic bag stolen from the flagging tape scraps, and slightly leaky) were worth some attention, weighing in at  1 or 2 lbs. total.  We are still out on the reward goat walk (for good behavior – no ‘king of the hill’ at 2nd weighing, and they got that they must follow through and be weighed before release), so have not yet actually weighed the blob.  And blob it is; new grass of the pasture is probably giving us a seasonally heavy Poop Weight figure!  Maybe that error will balance a few excretive events surely missed.

To my pleasant surprise, despite the goats’ quick deceleration of excitement at meals available today within the fence, and despite the 1-slide-with-1- weight antiquity of our score-of-an-old Platform Scale from a garage in Lincolnville (and thank you again Josh for boating this 200 lb. item – a guess, as it cannot get onto itself-  across the stream) …  not only did the weighing WORK!!! … but everyone except Rubix (who rated playing upon the stream rocks higher than eating) GAINED WEIGHT!!!  1 ½ lbs., 2 ½ lbs., Josie over 15 lbs…… wait – we must add a double-take of whether one foot is calmly resting somewhere Next to the platform? to our Weighing Protocol. 

But 13 out of 14 good goat weights on a first run-through is Not Bad, for only-1-person-today, out-numbered by 7 goats, outnumbered exponentially by very distracting BLACK FLIES… SARE Farmer Research  : )
Now black flies are impeding my view of this screen and clogging the keyboard, as goats have collected around me to chew cud, politely announcing ‘enough Canada Lillies (Myanthemum Canadens);  time to go string a pasture paddock.’  So my blog closes.

Much love and spring milk, Shana



Thursday, April 6, 2017

2018 offerings


Seeking 1 more Intern

SARE Tree Leaf Fodder research 3 short days/week (see for project details); Farm Involvement and Learning (goats, hogs, wild mushrooms and herbs, etc.) 2 longer days/week.  Gardening and music likely, mornings or evenings of short days.  $150/week stipend, beautiful off-grid apartment with sky lights, plus heavenly milk.


“Trees feed Livestock feed Soil;  Farmer Ecology & Skills for a Changing Planet,”

Tree Fodder Seminar 2018 based at 3 Streams Farm,

Sat. July 8 – Sun. July 14 (with partial attendance options).

$150 full week (food and simple lodging included).  $35/day; $55/2 days.  $10-$20 single events. 

One full working scholarship available.  Barter welcome.



Sun., July 8:  Our Farms, Studies, and Sky:


Meet, greet, settle camps, dip in ponds.  Make soup, share info., explore literature.


12 noon – 2pm:  Soup served.


12:30 – 2pm:  Shana Hanson launches “Knew Kernels of Knowledge” Sharing, with her kernels from3 Streams trees, English landscape historians, and Colloque Trognes.     


2 – 5pm:  Walk and discuss Climate Challenges and Active Hope, while touring Pollarded Trees, and Woodland Duff Production under the ‘air meadow’. 


5 – 6:30pm:  Cook and eat Supper.  (Additional farm products welcome.)


6:30 – 8pm:  Bring and share Picture Presentations of our Farms


(small Windows laptop with USB port and cable internet available.)  


8 – 10:30pm:  Star-Gazing Goat Walk with Hanlon Kelley and Jeffrey Mabee, and Moon Phases for Best Tree Sprouting Response (I await information from Ernst Zuercher; this may become a daytime Skype visit to Switzerland).

Mon., July 9:  MOFGA Tree Fodder Day:


6 am:  Breakfast laid out, self-serve. 


7 am:  Shana’s carpool (inc. 2 goats) to MOFGA (25 miles from 3 Streams Farm) leaves.  


8  - 9am at MOFGA:  Snacks, Tree Teas, and Resource Sharing Table.


9 – 4pm:  MOFGA Tree Fodder Day:  Animals eat what? Enlivening Soil thru Tree-based Livestock Farming


See for details.  Lunch soup provided; potluck offerings invited; bag lunch also okay.


5 – 6:30pm at 3 Streams Farm:  Swim.  Cook and eat Supper.


6:30 – 8:30 pm:  Try each other’s Tools; Piece up Dry Brush for Sat. biochar burn.

Tues., July 10:  Climbing and Storage:


4:30 – 7am:  Prune, Walk with goats. 


7 – 8am:  Breakfast. 


8 – 12 noon:  Adam Lynn and Edgar Evenkeel mentor us to Climb Safely with Rope and Harness.

Shana guides us to Prune for ‘Air Meadow’ Development, and to Prepare Branches for Fast On-site Stacking.


12 – 1pm:  Swim.  Lunch.


1 – 5pm:  Eric Dayan (?) and Edgar mentor us to Move Trees with Rope and Throw Line, plus more Climbing.

Shana guides us to Prune, and to Ensile Stripped Leaves or Twig-leaves.


5 – 6:30pm:  Cook and eat Supper. 


6:30 – 8 pm:  Grill Michael Walder (Skyped) on:  Economics, Ergonomics, and Animal Logistics.   



Wed., July 11:  Mushrooms and Soil:

5 – 7am:  Fetch Drifted Seaweed from the bay, downtown.  Swim!
7 – 8am:  Breakfast.
8 – 11am:  Bring new logs to old Shitake and Pearl Oyster mushrooms, and introduce many ways. 
11 – 12 noon:  Use feet, billhooks, hatchets and machetes on aged brush to fill wheel barrows with ‘tree food’.    
12 – 1pm:  Lunch. 
1 – 5pm:  Jameson Waines (?) and Mark Fulford join us to strategize to help other 3 Streams Resident “Wild” Fungi, look for New Life in our Biochar?, decide how to apply Seaweed from the Bay, and use Mushroomy Fodder Brush Refuse to Feed Rock  Dust to Fodder Trees.  Mark lectures on Learning to foster Plant Resilience.     
5 – 6:30pm:  Cook and eat Supper with Many Mushrooms and Some Seaweed. 
6:30 – 9pm:  Drive-in Movie (on computer outdoors while watching goats): “The Shepherdess”?  


Thurs., July 12:  Orchard Trees and Field Trips:
5 – 7am:  Complete twig-leaf stack and silage barrel.
7 – 8am:  Breakfast.
8 – 12 noon:  Edgar Evenkeel helps us Use a Lanyard to Position in Old Apple Trees (and prune them).  Eliza Greenman and Shana Hanson show Safety Tricks for Free Climbing.
12 – 1pm:  Lunch. 
1pm:  Carpool to Hodgemans’ in Winterport. 
1:30 – 3:30pm:  (Winterport)  Tom Hodgeman shows us Apple-Rose-etc. Browse Management with Katadin sheep and Devon Cattle. 
3:45 – 5:45pm:  (Monroe)  Vincent Versillo discusses Leaves and other Tree Foods in Cheeses and shows us North Branch Farm. 
6:15 – 7:45:  Cook and eat Supper (overlaps presentation).
7 – 9pm:  Eliza Greenman and Shana Hanson report on Colloque Trognes 2018 in Sare, France.

Fri., July 13:  Nut and Fruit Fodder:


4:30 – 7am:  Goat walk, swim.


7 – 8am:  Breakfast.


8 – 10am:  Hog walk and fence move.


10 - 12:  Long Season Fodder-Forest Pig Utopia;  Cultivars for Timely Harvests.  Eliza Greenman


5 – 6:30pm:  Cook and eat Supper


6:30 – 9pm:  Tree and Livestock Songs with folk singers Sarah and Bill Smith, and with singer/composer Anna Dembska, outdoors while wandering with goats. 



Sat., July 14:  Biochar and Tree Tars: 

5 – 7am:  Set up a tight Slow-burn Charring Mound, based on picture in Rotherham (2013). 
7 – 8am:   Breakfast. 
8 – 12 noon:  Set up and light brush around a can each for Pine and Birch Tar Producton.  Light  and monitor Charring Mound. 
12 – 1pm:  Lunch Picnic, next to burns.
1 – 2pm:  Last Circle with short stories, insights, feedback, requests, creative performances.  Dowse Burns. 
2 – 4pm:  Time for Request Completion – finish loose ends, look up last resources, or repeat something fun.



Graycilla's Goat KID/S due JULY 5.

Muscovies just hatching, a week late, under 2 moms!!! (May 14)   (All babies for sale this year). 

209 Back Belmont Rd., Belfast, ME  (207) 338-3301

Our CSA Dairy Goat Lease Group shares milk from fresh greenery of woods and pasture (we feed no grain), for an 18 week season starting June 12, 2017.  In 2017 an $88.34 share claims 1 milking of 1 doe x 18 weeks (price goes up each year based on the inflation rate).  Most group members claim 2-3 milkings /week.  I will average milk amounts of our top 4 does from the previous week,  to give members equal shares.  5 does have rising amounts of milk, so new shares are possible for 2017.

New milk availability for 2017:  We may try placing additional quarts of fresh milk in the well, as Certified Organic by MOFGA for Animal (Guinea Hog) Consumption.  We will date the lids; $5 .50 and a clean quart jar can be left in exchange for each quart.  (Milk through Shares described above is more affordable.) 

Nosenia loves peach leaves, shaken down.
Sign up in for Goat Lease Dairy Shares in Comment Box below, or call 338-3301. 

*Now Scheduling  Brackenroot's camping trips to Your farm.
Our  Hog Rental Service will start in earnest in spring 2016.   Bracken Root our American Guinea sow is 3 years old, probably 140 lbs, intestinal parasite free, and 8" high 2 wire fence trained, affectionate and easy-going.  He loves belly rubs.  We will deliver and set up fence, then pick up/take down for $35 or trade plus $.50/mile. 

Woodland Medicines are custom harvested on our daily browse walks, preferably accompanied by the person seeking the medicine.  Turkey Tail fungi, Usnea lichen, Witch Hazel leaves, Gold Thread plants with roots, Baneberry roots, Club moss, Balsam Poplar buds, White Birch inner bark, Yellow Birch bark and leaves, Japanese Knotweed leaves, Hemlock needles, and Cedar fronds are some of the offerings.  Additionally, wild gardens provide Evening Primrose seed, St. John's Wort whole herb or seed to plant,  Motherwort, Nettles and varied  visiting plants.

Hazel in Witch Hazel

Nut, Fruit, Fodder and Windbreak tree seedlings, graftlings, seed and scions grow in garden beds or wild, needing homes on open ground in the local community come April or May. 

We have Pear, Apple, Japanese Heartnut, Black Walnut, Shagbark Hickory, Burr Oak, Yellow Birch, Bass- wood, White Ash, Red Oak, Witch Hazel, Cedar, Black Spruce, White Pine seedlings.

Chicks, Guinea Keats, Ducklings, Goslings and Muscovies are raised by their parents in a small mutli-species flock, with the friendly hogs on guard duty if geese are not.  We sell a few young birds out into the community on a variable seasonal schedule.  Poultry sales do not cover our grain bill for the smaller poultry species, but Nosenia subsidizes our purchase of 3/4 ton/yr. of certified organic Emmer oats from Dave Oulette in St. David, ME.  with piglet sales.  This winter I am sprouting these oats, to decrease reliance on supplementing with more expensive organic layer grain mixes, plus have completed new light housing for more poultry to join our geese in their fence moves on pasture this summer. 

Goldie and Solomon’s Buff Toulouse goslings are likely to be due the 2nd week of May.  Gold goslings are female.  I can sex grey goslings by August as young adults.  These are calm, shy geese and though their large size scares hawks away from smaller poultry, white Emben geese would be a better choice if you want  aggressive guards.   

Moch-moch Mocha Duck and Fancy Drake’s grandchildren, mixed European Mallard-derived ducklings , also are likely to be available in May.  More clutches of and ducklings expected later as well.  Ducklings start at $8 each and go up with age/grain fed, to $30/pair sold at a loss.  Trades are welcome.  Years ago, I put eggs from Beau Chemin Farm’s Welsh Harlequin, Khaki Campbell, and Dutch Hookbill flock under a hen who had lost her rooster, to hatch my original pair.  We have white, mocha, and chocolate colored offspring, and beaks are not hooked. Boys all get green heads and blue wing stripes; some white girls get blue wing stripes.  The chickens trained them to go in at night.  
Guinea keats are hatched under geese if they set late enough for the neighbor’s Guinea hens to be laying, or under ducks, or hens if I put the chicken eggs back under her a week later.  We hope to have our own pair of Guineas again; sad mishaps of the neighbor thinking that my lonely boy was trespassing (no, it was a drop-off bird), leading to wing clipping then a predator meal, so that the hen I (well, my chicken hen) hatched for him ran the edge of the pond alone to be with her duckling siblings, so got snatched late this fall, before I thought to put the sow there.  

We have  Muscovy ducks,  thanks to Nick Jackson in Belmont.  Welcome back to the area, Nick and Sarah! The Muskovies are getting along fine with our geese, and hatchlings are due in sync with the other brooding fowl, in May. 

Tree of Life Fruit Tree Service is my name for offering 33 years experience in winter pruning and spring grafting.  I charge $20-$25/hr. depending on proportion of ladder and chainsaw work, versus free climbing with the Wheeler saw, with a $30 minimum unless in Belfast, plus $.50/mile, plus claim the live brush for my goats. 

Instruction is included; I encourage everyone to learn how to tend trees.  We have worthy old orchards throughout Waldo County to prune, plus need to plant young Standards as these old trees were planted by our great grandparents.

I also offer Fodder Tree Development, Research, And Fascination (obsession?), which started in 2010.  Look up Shana Hanson, Primitive Skills, Tree Pollarding, and also YouTube, Shana Hanson.

Shana’s “Togetherness” line of Goat Lingerie (thanks to Katie Savalchak for the name) is sewn from water-proof fade-proof (semen and urine-proof) scraps of colorful awning fabric, with other decorative scraps from your or my collection.  These are custom-sewn items by special order, mostly in winter, for goats near enough for fitting in-person.  $15/hr. plus materials. 
Chastity Coolots have lasted through 2 month periods of continual use without discomfort, disrepair, nor conception.  Tried and proven, but not guaranteed.  A buck may cavort with his favorite old doe safely while servicing the younger girls.

Bunchberry, a big buck
Smaller Kraut needed a second zipper.
Buck Aprons keep a buck’s face and front quarters sweetly clean, and have kept all does present at 3 Streams Farm from being bred, though not guaranteed.  Our apron has proven useful for the months when doelings are fertile but as yet too small; the buck doesn’t have to be lonely while he waits to breed later.
Weaning Bras zip wide open for milking ease.  These have proven useful for a self-nurser off farm, and for establishing bottle feeding at birth on 3 Streams Farm, where does and kids live outdoors together.  These bras will need adjustment and repair if used with an experienced nursing kid.  Bottle feeding allows instant weaning later without separation.

A Day Pack has been added to our collection, for carrying hot cider when we (goats, sow and farmer) escort you through our woods to find...

your dream Solstice Tree at the tippy top of a tall fir.  I am cutting tall firs to create sun pockets, for "Air Meadow" regeneration of fodder from lowered tree canopies.

Mostly Wooden Farm-made Hardware can be custom-built to order. 
A pack with 3 half-gallons of milk
Baskets are from 3 Streams Farm materials. 
A two day “Baskets from your Back Yard”
winter  workshop is offered if four people express interest.   

Mangers are of fir and goat-stripped maple, with a birch bark or metal roof.  I made these light-weight and free-standing mangers to move around our outdoor winter yard, spreading hay and manure mulch to the poorer soils.   

My Quansit Frame is 12’ wide x 11’ high, of local softwood strapping.  I can build a similarly 12’ long frame at your place for $260, or much less if you help.  Mileage may apply.  Smaller frames for light-weight moveable animal dwellings are possible. 

Stainless Wire Fence Panels are 20 ft. long, quite light, and is goat-proof when electrically charged.  I’m developing these to last longer than me for general use in our pasture, plus be carriable in the woods, to fence a felled tree for instance.   The wire cost a 1-2 pennies more per ft. than poly-wire.  You are invited to schedule a winter workshop to weave your fence.  

Craft Materials grow here at 3 Streams Farm.  You are invited to help gather your materials, for a reduced price or trade.  Elm raffia (inner bark), White Cedar bark strips, White Birch bark of various inner shades, skun Fir poles in many sizes, forked Hardwood props, goat-stripped Red Maple or Apple branches, Beech “star” nut cases, Spruce cones, colorful Duck, Guinea and Rooster feathers, Goose quills, and dried Black Walnut hulls (for ink with the quills; children’s writing kits available packaged as stocking stuffers) are some but not all of what’s here.

Cashmere from Hazel especially is available in small quantity.

3 Streams Farm is the home base for Belfast Blueberry Cooperative, a fresh market organic wild harvest crew.  In August, we take orders for table quality berries in flats of 15 qts., (about 24 lbs.).  

3 Streams Farm would like collaboration with or residency of: 

Biochemist and soil scientist curious to investigate:

               Pathways and measurements of toxins from rain and snow through our farm food chains;

               Effects of toxins from rain and snow on microbial soil life with and without:

fungal wood debris mulch layers;   bio-char amendment;

               Beneficial Plant Compounds found in our milk, in collaboration with a

Food Fungi propagator to use:

chipped and bundled hardwood goat brush refuse, trunk logs of felled poplars and

red maples, and large branches of oak and ash cut when establishing pollards, all throughout

the woodland; an

Olfactory person to distill essential oils and tars outdoors from:

fresh green white pine limbs, white cedar cuttings post browse, balsam fir boughs, and

yellow birch sticks post-browse; a     

Wood craft person to use:

goat-stripped branches, interesting pruned-off tree joints,

basketry and cording materials, and fir poles of all sizes; and an

Arborist to climb and sculpt the forest canopy with Shana, to become a

lush many-layered “air-meadow” of regrowth for animal fodder.

Report on Tree Fodder Seminar 2017: 
Farmers Can Climb! Arboreal Pruning Skills for Livestock Feed Security, July 9 - 15 

The Tree Fodder Seminar (“Farmers can Climb!”) 2017 drew a small group of choice people all coming in different combinations each day.  Most of the expenses were paid by people’s registration contributions plus last year’s $86 profit, leaving a shortfall of about $180 out of about $750, certainly worth it to me. 
Having our second arborist Eric Dayan stay a whole day on Thursday versus the planned half day follow-up to Adam Lynn's whole day on Tuesday gave us a much-appreciated jump on skills, and a start in a thickly wooded setting.  Four of us were in the air at once there, and I learned to use a lanyard and double rope to climb up beneath the slope of a tree easily.   Edgar Evenkeel’s attendance and generous teaching with foot-locking technique was an unexpected additional arborist treat on Tuesday!  In future, we will go right to my woodland with more potential rope sets from the get-go. 
Late afternoon Monday, Vincent Vercillo, Any May Turner and I packed fresh elm leaves into buckets as silaging samples.  Perhaps Vince’s cheese making expertise helped.  Later, worried about enclosing too much air, I consolidated the leaves more tightly into one bucket, using a plastic shopping bag also stuffed, to stuff in more with a good seal under the bucket lid.  I put that bucket into our root cellar, for animals to sample this winter.  The second bucket, now only half full, got neglected.  A week later, I decided to offer it to my Guinea hogs.  I opened it and a sweet ferment met my nostrils, despite the  abundant air enclosed.  The hogs ate all elm leaves eagerly – some were still quite fresh, some beginning to ferment. 
Earlier in the seminar week, the hogs voraciously ate about 20 lbs. of white ash leaves, snapped off in bunches with twig bases, as I do for goats into mesh bags.  I look forward to the day that I have enough re-sprouting fodder trees in full swing to satiate both goats and hogs here (the goats reward me with increased milk quantities and flavors, so the pigs tend to get short-changed : (  ). 
The little stick of an ash tree emerging between branches of a dead plum tree by my driveway turn-around, which I pointed out as my brave and drastic attempt at boll formation (I’d cut all growth to three collars in close proximity just before the Seminar, but left two lower branches with no rationale) has now sprouted right near the top quite profusely, I am happy to report! 
During the Seminar Monday we made pruning cuts to develop the crowns of trees in the open that will end up pollards with many bolls, and tied sheaves of various tree cuttings.  I have since continued re-pruning trees near the pasture.  Sidney and Lukey, who attended the Seminar on Friday, came to climb and prune the mid-pasture stand of elms with me a couple days ago post-Seminar, and brought a relative and friend from Holland, with first-hand observations of the developing of one-boll willow pollards or willow “knotten.” 
The elm stand we are pruning was suddenly diseased just post Seminar, with leaves on one trunk  completely dead.  We are pruning it for the third time (my first pruning of it was about 6 years ago), and this time going for boll development, leaving stubs with multiple collar cuts in new wood.  I am not being completely sterile – dead leaves have dropped on the ground, and I have painted some but not all cuts with (fungicidal) pine tar mixed into my usual pine-tar-bees’ wax home-made grafting compound.  I mixed in more pine tar cold, just to be able to spread more quickly and less expensively on so many cuts, and even so it is hard to justify the time it takes to apply (so I’m not doing all).  I await the stand’s progress or failure to produce healthy re-growth.
The painting of cut cambium edges, specifically to prevent Dutch Elm infection of same cambium, was recommended by a fourth and senior arborist who has miraculously appeared to camp out here at my farm.  He is teaching us more with ropes and harnesses, plus helping follow through in opening our woodland Seminar demonstration site. 
 At Teltane Farm on the seminar Wednesday, I had to leave early, but was told that our hazel nut shells burned to boil a good sized pot of spaghetti water in 9 minutes? (please correct me? 12 minutes?) on Mark Fulford’s down-draft biochar producing little Vietnamese cook stove.  Mark’s ramial wood chips (could be our fodder refuse) rotted with wild random fungi and placed over rock powders (the fungi make the rock powders available) certainly nourish a good-looking orchard and vegetable garden; I was struck at his lack of insect pests.  I was sad to miss seeing his worm Motels 6 thru 8 (among other fun names), also fed with many tree foods.
Jackson Regenerational Farm appreciated our help in forming brush berms for winter pig paddocks, under red oaks, a primary source of their feed.   I went there post-seminar, and Nick showed me new pollarding of his younger singled coppice trees, inspired by our Seminar visit!  Any May found their farm especially inspiring, citing the obvious happiness of the pigs plus loving child-parent interactions of the humans. 
Carol Kinsey’s presentation about leaf fodder harvesting in Nepal has left pictures in my mind, which surface when I gather piles of pruned foliage.  Sometimes mine look alost as lush as their more tropical harvests (this elm does; despite some disease, this previously pruned growth has an amazing abundance of leaf surface).   
From Eliza Greenman on Friday, we learned about traditional use of hogs to clean early drops in orchards,  with oats then planted where they tilled the paths, to later cut and throw under the trees over pig manure for clean oat-cushioned apple drop, and to round out the hogs’ cull apple diet when they clean up afterwards.  Along with more aspects of “livestock under fruit and nuts,” Eliza has been expanding her knowledge of “harvest timing nerdery” to help folks plan for multi-species tree blocks while retaining harvest efficiency. 
A chinkapin that Eliza has re-discovered is twice the size of the common one (and should be hardy for our climate)  This chinkapin bait enticed Eric Evans of the American Chestnut Society to come to dinner and give us a thorough update about their chestnut breeding progress and plans.  With Moe Martin’s “Pick-up Truck Arboretum” after dinner, plus Jack K. of Maine Tree Crop Alliance showing up, the tree and nut excitement was worth a video clip.  See     . 
Eliza Greenman has also located Hick’s Everbearing Mulberry, a very heavily bearing mulberry used to raise hogs in Virginia (often with no other feed!).  She says if it will grow in Maine, she will consider a move back here – this spring let’s plant them!!! (Myself, Daniel McPhee at MOFGA and others want you back, Eliza).       
Today I received a call from yet another amazing leaf farmer who was not able to attend our Seminar.  She has Shetland sheep in West Sedgewick, who live primarily on tree and bush leaves during the growing season.  My MOF&G article and our conversation have inspired her to start storing this feed for winter.  She and her co-farming sister have taught the sheep to eat dried drifted seaweed as a staple food – she has now inspired me to give another try at this with the goats (they currently get the purchased Waldoboro product, which is live-harvested and $40/50#)  I hope to visit their farm next Thursday.  Does anyone want to carpool?
Thank you all for your participation and encouragement.  Keep in touch!  Love, Shana

Dear Farmers, Permaculturists, and Small Woodland Owners,

2016 Tree Fodder Seminar:

Boosting Climate Resilience and Biodiversity in Perennial Farm ecosystems, through use of Air Meadow Pollarding.

July 10 -16 (with one and  two day options),        at 3 Streams Farm in Belfast, Maine:

Traditional Air Meadow pruning cycles are aimed at creating accessible native tree forms for harvest of high quality animal fodder.  These methods also enhance bush and ground browse layers, provide nutrients to pasture plants, fix more carbon, increase tree longevity, preserve broader forest gene pools of tree individuals per area, and increase habitat diversity and species counts.

Seminar will include: 

·        A quick review of 8,000 years of tree-based agricultural history.

·        Tree-level considerations:  light requirements, fungal compartmentalization for longevity, progressions toward structural forms by species for storm-proofing, sproutability, and safe human access, assessment of tree energy to inform pruning regimes.

·        Forest-level decisions and practice:  tree selection toward “intensity” and “grain” of pattern for maximum complexity, felling with minimal understory damages, soil-to-species matching, Edge effects and “sun pocket” balancing of light, temperature, moisture and wind changes,  tree genetic and pollination awareness to retain long-term diversity, pest insurance through wildlife habitat enhancement plus mulch duff for rain toxin resiliency using “waste” wood and Legacy Trees.  

·        Trees and brush on the meadow:  nutritive soil contributions of trees to grass layer, strategies for establishing young trees around animals, open-burn biocharring, casual wild mushroom cultivation and other uses of woody refuse. 

·        Seasonal nutritional windows of plants:  timing fodder harvests per species to optimize nourishment and palatability, nutritional ranking to prioritize species.

·        Animal-plant interactions in browsing; observation and recording methods to capture their knowledge of your land. 

·        Harvest and storage methods:  stripping, lopping, sheaf tying, racking, stacking, picking, raking and silaging (in that seasonal order); use and care of tools.

·        Socio-cultural considerations:  indignities associated with reliving these ancient practices, historic class conflicts around leaf harvest versus lumber, tree and browse pace and rootedness at odds with the transience of our times, extensive species-inclusive slow stable agriculture versus pressure to intensively “feed the masses”,  cultural ideas around labor and human abilities. 

·        Manual labor together to keep 3 Streams goats fed on tree fodder during the seminar.

·        Swimming ( 3 ponds on site), cooking, eating, sleeping, conversation, stories, music. 

·        Expert consultations planned, on billhook use (Benjamin Bouchard, Tues. 10 AM), arborist skills and safety (Mike Jastrom, present throughout the week), assessment of soils for tree species (Dave Rocque, date not pinned), benefits and uses of biochar and woody mulch (Mark Fulford, Tues. 1 – 2 PM), Q and A prepared by Fred Servello, U ME, re: digestibility of browse based on his career of deer studies,   and tree fodder in the European historical context (Morten Moesswilde, German scholar and Maine State Forester, requested, with Shana Hanson for sure).


$150 suggested tuition covers instruction and room or campsite plus meal ingredients. 

$35 $35 and $55 are suggested tuitions respectively for one and two day options. 

Call Shana at (207) 338-3301 FMI and to register.
   Pictures:  Hakan Slotte (2002) pp 12 and 2.    

The following Schedule for July 2016 was flexible with swimming, reading, or other breaks any time (3 ponds).
Participant consensus for changes; input was welcome.


Saturday evening and Sunday morning, land, settle and visit.


Sunday:  12:00 convene for lunch.

1:00 pm Shana Hanson presents an Overview.

2 :00 pm Farm Tour with questions and answers.  Some pruning and hauling to feed goats.

5:00 pm share Hopes and Interests, and thoughts on Schedule while we prepare supper.

7:00 pm circle to Present about our Farms, in clear-cut with goats.

Monday:   7:00 am prepare breakfast.

8:00 am Pruning Basics for Pollard Development; work open-grown and edge trees to learn structural and tree health concepts.   

11:30 optional dip in ponds.

12:00 lunch.

1:00 pm Shana presents Initial Pruning on Tall Trees, Mike Jastram, Arborist presents Methods and Safety.  Discussion and practice of Fresh Fodder Feeding Methods, while we create a supply of fodder for the goats. 

5:00 pm prepare supper.

6:30 pm peruse Shana’s Literature.  Phone Interview with Michael Walder of Mahna Farm.


Tuesday:  7:00 am prepare breakfast.

8:00 am Shana presents A Forest-Level View; Selection and Design considerations. 

9:00 am Mike Jastram, Arborist presents  Felling with the Understory in Mind

10 AM Billhook lesson with Benjamin Bouchard.  Fell, prune and lop in the woods to produce green matter. 

11:30 optional dip in ponds.

12:00 lunch.

1:00 pm Mark Fulford presents Tree Contributions to Soil Health; Biochar, Fungi and Ecological Resilience.  Look at various remains of ramial wood from feeding of tree fodder, to choose our “habits for our habitat.” 

2:00 pm Instruction by Shana on Tying Sheaves, with practice on the morning’s green matter.

5:00 pm prepare supper.

6:30 pm Carol Kinsey of Seed Tree tells us about Tree Fodder in Nepal.  Discussion of Real Economics. 


Wednesday:  7:00 am prepare breakfast.

8:00 am Shana Hanson leads Rack and Stack Design; we will choose our method and locate/gather poles.

10:00 am David Rocque, State Soil Scientist will teach us about Reading Soils for Tree Species Success.  

11:30 optional dip in ponds.

12:00 lunch.

1:00 pm phone Interview with Paul Hand of Bees and Trees, UK., while we  Build a Rack.  Add existing twig-leaf sheaves.  Choose and harvest trees for more greenery.

4:00 pm Shana leads discussion of Seasonal Nutritional Windows of plant species, as we tie more sheaves.   

5:00 pm prepare supper.

6:30 pm Browse Walk with Prof. Fred Servello’s custom Q and A document about his Deer Browse Research


Thursday:  7:00 am prepare breakfast.

8:00 am continue to Practice Harvest Skills.  Choose differring woodland areas to work. 

10:30 am Shana leads consideration of Journaling and Data Collection Methods, as we add more sheaves.

11:30 optional dip in ponds.

12:00 lunch.

1:00 pm Herbal Consultation on Tree Barks and Leaves with Stephen Byers, Herbalist, while we strip tea bark or play with raffia.

2:30 pm Review each other’s morning pruning, then continue harvest and storage racking.
5:00 pm prepare supper.

6:00 pm guest visit from Morten Moesswilde, State Forester (translator of German for Shana’s tree fodder studies).  Discussion of Leaf Fodder in the European Historical Context, as we finish supper.

Walk to our sites, queries inc. tree pollination and Viable Species Populations and Spacing, plus Morten’s Forestry Thoughts and Offerings as he sees what we are doing.      

Friday:  7:00 am prepare breakfast.

8:00 am discuss people’s priorities to cover topics further; complete our harvest structures.

11:30 optional dip in ponds.

12:00 lunch.

1:00 pm share our Home Plans for Tree Fodder, both ongoing projects and new thoughts.

2:00 pm continue to cover people’s priorities.

5:00 pm prepare supper.

7:00 pm Open No-Mic with music, stories or what-have-you. 

Biochar Burn, or smaller fire, if not too dry and people want to do.

Saturday 7:00 am prepare breakfast.

8:00 am plan our public MOFGA sponsored "day tripping" presentation (happening at 1 pm). 

Continue to work on people’s priorities. 

11:30 optional dip in ponds.

12:00 lunch.

1:00 pm  Lead members of the public in a MOFGA sponsored "Day Tripping" Tour.

3:00 pm   Closing Circle.
4:00 pm adjourn.


$150 suggested contribution covers instruction and room or campsite plus meal ingredients for the week. 

$35 is suggested to attend one day, and $20/day suggested contribution for additional days.

$10 suggested donation to attend any single presentation. 


3 billhooks are available at cost, $61.77 each, but requested to be shared (plus Shana’s) during the seminar. 


Tree Fodder Seminar 2017 will be:  Farmers Can Climb; Arboreal Pruning Skills for Livestock Feed Security, Sunday, July 9 thru Saturday, July 15.  Partial attendance options available.  Call Shana at (207) 338-3301 FMI and to register.   209 Back Belmont Rd., Belfast, ME 04915