04/09/09 12:00PM By Jane Lindholm  Download MP3
Small, diverse farms are a growing segment of Vermont's agricultural economy. Some are based on traditional models, like dairy, but others take advantage of new trends in farming, like Community Supported Agriculture. And many operated by people who make their living doing something else entirely.
We'll talk about the role that part-time farms have in Vermont's agriculture economy, and how backyard farming helps maintain Vermont's agricultural identity. Guests: Deputy Secretary of Agriculture David Lane, and Carl Russell, a small-scale farmer and board member of the farm advocacy organization Rural Vermont.
Also on the program, two more features from our series on raising animals. We visit Fat Toad Farm in Brookfield to learn about goats from Judith Irving and Calley Hastings. And then Peter Lebenbaum in Middlebury describes why he has enjoyed the hobby of raising lambs for more than 20 years.
Vermont author and farmer Chuck Wooster's new book is Living With Pigs. It's a guide to choosing, training, caring for and slaughtering your pig. VPR's Jane Lindholm pays a visit to Wooster's Sunrise Farm to see how it's done.
We explore the extraordinary diversity and personality of chickens in a visit to Jennifer Megyesi's South Royalton farm. Megyesi is author of the book The Joy of Keeping Chickens.
Peter Lebenbaum has been raising sheep on his land in Middlebury for about 25 years.
Fat Toad Farm is a family operation, and a good example of a backyard farm that grew into a full-time operation.