This is a place to share what
is going on in the Sumter County Florida
community for gardeners, farmers
and people who dream of the farm lifestyle. It includes updates and information about educational programs provided by the UF/IFAS Sumter County Extension Office in Bushnell.
The 7th edition of the AGRItunity Conference and Trade Show will be held next Friday and Saturday, January 25-26, 2013 at the West Central Florida Agricultural Education Center in Bushnell, Florida. Register at http://sumter.ifas.ufl.edu to save $5 on admission for Saturday's conference.
a few days, America’s farmers and ranchers will have the opportunity to make a
positive impact on their communities by taking part in the Census
Conducted every five years by USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics
the Census captures a complete count of all U.S. farms, ranches and those who
America’s producers have a story
to tell, and the Census gives them a voice to
tell it with. NASS recently launched “Share My Story” on the Census website to ask farmers how the
Census impacts their lives, operations and communities. A row crop and hog
farmer from Indiana posted a story telling us the data is a tool to track, “how
our herd numbers, acreage, technology use and practices…compare to other local
farmers, farmers across the state of Indiana and farmers across the
The Census also helps tell the whole story of U.S. agriculture. Without the information
collected we wouldn’t know that 3 million farmers in the United States, only
one percent of our total population, provide feed, fuel, and fiber to the other
99 percent. While that seems like a huge task, we know that farmers are
stepping up to the challenge because the data tell us that U.S. agriculture is
The last Census counted more than
2 million farms and ranches in the United States spanning more than 922 million
acres. That’s nearly a 4 percent increase in the number of farms from the
previous Census in 2002. Those farms produced more than 2 billion bushels of
soybeans, 18 million bales of cotton, and $37 billion in egg and poultry sales.
And, working on those farms were more than one million women farmers, a 19
percent increase from 2002.
As preparations continue for this
year’s Census of Agriculture, we call on farmers and ranchers to share their stories, ask questions and talk to their fellow
producers about this critical effort.Your
answers to the Census help grow your farm future; shape farm programs; and
boost services for you, your community and your industry.
Census forms will be mailed out
in late December, and responses are due by February 4th, 2013. Producers also
have the option to complete their forms online. After all, the Census is your
voice, your future and your responsibility. For more information about the
Census, visit www.agcensus.usda.gov or call 1-888-4AG-STAT
The UF/IFAS Sumter County
Extension Office partnered with two communities to obtain a Community/School
Garden grant offered by the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer
Master Gardener volunteers and
extension agents are working with community members in Royal and in Wildwood to
build raised bed community gardens. The gardens in Royal have been constructed
and will be used to produce crops for the community.A large group of volunteers with the
Community of Royal, Inc. has been active in preparing the site and building the
beds for the project which is located in the community park.
The gardens in Wildwood will be
constructed with assistance from the City of Wildwood, the Wildwood Community
Development Center Inc. and Loaves of Love.Clarke Park will be the site for individuals in the community to grow
vegetables in 48 square foot raised bed gardens.
Members of these two communities
are encouraged to become involved in the community garden projects. For more
information please contact Susan Kelly, Sumter County Extension Director at
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