Sheep at Gathering Ground

by Russell Rolffs, farm manager This year, Gathering Ground grazed six White Dorper sheep, rotating them through the vineyard June to August and then the young chestnut and fruit orchards the rest of the season. Combining livestock with crops is a sustainable practice because it creates a harmonious relationship between two agricultural pursuits wherein the … Continue reading Sheep at Gathering Ground

Why are we planting chestnuts?

Chestnuts are called the Bread Tree as the nuts are similar to grain nutritionally. They can be eaten fresh or milled into a flour. Chestnuts were once a staple throughout much of the eastern United states, both for humans and wildlife, and today, they are a staple in parts of Europe and Asia. Chestnut trees can … Continue reading Why are we planting chestnuts?

Planning Ahead for the Rose Chafer

First published in the Observer By Russell Rolffs, Gathering Ground executive director Recently I saw a sign at the entrance of a garden that read: “If nothing is eating your plants, your garden is not part of the ecosystem.” The message to gardeners, I think, is to be proud when your plants are preyed upon … Continue reading Planning Ahead for the Rose Chafer

Dinner in the Vineyard! Sept 1!

Join us for Dinner in the Vineyard, Saturday Sept 1! We are exciting to be hosting some of the top local chefs. The evening will include a cocktail hour with passed appetizers and libations from local breweries and wineries. A vineyard tour will be followed by a big table, family-style meal featuring fresh, local ingredients prepared … Continue reading Dinner in the Vineyard! Sept 1!

Gathering Ground: It’s Official!

This article was first published in The Washington Island Observer. We are pleased to announce that Gathering Ground has been granted 501(c)3 status, exempting the organization from paying federal taxes and permitting it to receive tax-deductible donations to help it achieve its mission. Gathering Ground is a new Island nonprofit dedicated to agriculture and education. … Continue reading Gathering Ground: It’s Official!

What is Sustainability?

There are a lot of buzz words in agriculture today. GMO, non-GMO, organic? Natural? Sustainability? All of these words are worth learning more about. Today, let's spend some time with sustainability. It is a key word in our mission statement, after all: "Gathering Ground educates youth and adults in sustainable agriculture and promotes economic development through agriculture, … Continue reading What is Sustainability?

A Model for Community Compost in Milwaukee

In the Bay View neighborhood of Milwaukee, schools and community members are coming together to cut waste and start composting. Compost, nature's black gold, the stuff that makes plants in your garden grow strong and healthy, is nothing to turn your nose up at. If done correctly, compost has no smell. Unlike rotting trash, composting … Continue reading A Model for Community Compost in Milwaukee