The Dirt

The Dirt is intended to educate, inform, and WOW people about farming in the Skagit Valley.  It is a modest, monthly message designed to give you a behind-the-scenes, fascinating, who-woulda-thought look at Skagit agriculture.

Let us know what you think, pass it on to a friend, or email us with topic ideas.

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The Dirt Issue 16 – WSU NWREC

Over the last 70 years, it’s hard to imagine a more valuable, more crucial collaboration in Skagit County agriculture than that between the local farming community and researchers at the WSU Northwest Washington Research and Extension Center (NWREC). Extension services … Continue reading

The Dirt Issue 15 – Youth InFARMation Program

Sharing the story of Skagit Valley agriculture is always great fun for us, but it’s especially so when we share that story with curious, enthusiastic kids. SPF’s multi-faceted Youth InFARMation Program is our effort to inform, engage and motivate youth—elementary … Continue reading

The Dirt Issue 14 – Organic Agriculture

Now we’re growing! Organic agriculture in the Skagit Valley— In the last few issues of The Dirt, we’ve addressed the subject of sustainability in agriculture. For many people, particularly among certain engaged consumers, sustainable agriculture is synonymous with organic agriculture. … Continue reading

The Dirt Issue 13 – Sustainable Agriculture and Sustainable Energy

This is the third article in a series on sustainable agriculture.  Let’s consider energy. For those who go all out to embrace sustainability, sustainable agriculture and sustainable energy are really two sides of the same coin. Energy to power the … Continue reading

The Dirt Issue 12 – Sustainability in a Petroleum World

The last issue of The Dirt dealt with sustainable agriculture, specifically as it relates to soil health. In this edition of The Dirt we explore the topic further.   Sustainability–preserving what we now have in order to pass it along to future … Continue reading

The Dirt Issue 11 – Sustainable Agriculture—Nothing New, or Is It?

There’s a lot of talk these days about sustainable agriculture. Many of the practices recognized as sustainable are based on older, if not ancient, farming methods now gaining favor through scientific analysis and proven performance. What constitutes “Sustainable Agriculture?” Delve … Continue reading

The Dirt Issue 10 – Building with Nature

Building with Nature If you’ve lived in the Skagit Valley for any length of time, you’ve no doubt heard talk and seen reports on Chinook salmon recovery efforts. A lot of committed, caring people representing many different points of view, … Continue reading

The Dirt Issue 9 – To Be A Farmer

Ever wonder what it takes to be a farmer? After all, it’s an uncertain way to make a living. Few other vocations are so dependent on factors that simply cannot be controlled. Weather alone has an impact that can run … Continue reading

The Dirt Issue 8 – 4H

  4-H: Head, Heart, Hands and Health  What do animal husbandry, science and engineering technology, performing arts, photography, vegetable gardening and archery have in common? These and many other pursuits are all learning opportunities through 4-H. The Skagit County Fair-along … Continue reading

The Dirt Issue 7 – Latitude, Day Length and Our Growing Season

In a previous post of The Dirt, we touched on the issue of climate and its contribution to successful farming in the Skagit Valley. In this month’s edition we are exploring how latitude and day length contribute to the characteristics … Continue reading