OGI Blog

Host Farm Profile – Carrowgarry Farm

Host Farm Profile – Carrowgarry Farm

Carrowgarry Farm in Co. Sligo is one of our fantastic host farms for 2024. Last year was their first year as an OGI Work Placement Programme Host Farm. We caught up with Paola to find out how it went and what they hope for from this year’s programme.   Tell us a...

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2023 Update from the OGI Board

The Organic Growers of Ireland’s (OGI) mission is to represent, support, grow and educate the growers that contribute to the Irish organic horticultural sector. Our volunteer Board Members are busy throughout the year, ensuring the voice of Irish organic growers is...

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Becoming an OGI Work Placement Programme Intern!

Becoming an OGI Work Placement Programme Intern!

Thinking of applying to the OGI Work Placement Programme but not sure what’s involved? Bruna, who completed our 2023 programme, describes her experience of making her application, getting accepted and her work placement at Beechlawn Organic Farm. Good luck with your...

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Korean Natural Farming with Kevin Wallace

Korean Natural Farming with Kevin Wallace

I have been studying and using Korean Natural Farming (KNF) since late 2019. I was introduced to it by a friend of mine the year previously; but instead of changing my complete approach to growing vegetables, I decided to study the methodology first and see, as much as I could, the rationale behind it.

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Open Food Network Ireland

Open Food Network Ireland

Open Food Network is a community-owned software platform that is built for selling food, though it can also be used to sell non-food or artisan craft products. It can be either a shopfront for individual food enterprises or a community hub of farmers and other local producers working together.

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Organic Grower Feature – Gorse Farm

Organic Grower Feature – Gorse Farm

Our understanding now is that no-dig is not exclusively a ‘deep-mulch’ system but incorporates many methods of cultivation that minimise soil disturbance and keeps the roots in the ground. Moreover, our approach to vegetable growing is now centred on building soil biology, which incorporates many methods, one of which continues to be no-dig.

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Organic Grower Colman Power at Featherfield Farm

Organic Grower Colman Power at Featherfield Farm

One of the new projects in the pipeline that I am excited about is the growing of medicinal mushrooms. Mushrooms are an organic fitness food. Nutritionally, they are a good source of folate and vitamin D; making them a natural stress reliever and mood improver. They are also beneficial to your immune system; a true superfood!

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Glasraí Organic Farm

Glasraí Organic Farm

Our main focus is on maintaining soil microbiology through the use of cover crops. No dig hasn’t won us over yet, but we are interested in following how it works on other farms. We are very cautious about deep mulch as practiced on many no-dig farms. We have a hesitancy because of the potential of nutrient run off, the effects of over nitrification on soils, the lock up of certain nutrients by the over supply of others. I suppose we’d like to keep an eye on soil testing results from such farms, and we haven’t seen much data yet. We may however yet embrace no-dig in a system using green manures and non reliance on deep mulching for weed control. We are always learning and evolving.

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New Leaf Urban Farmers

New Leaf Urban Farmers

Our micro-farm has developed over the past five seasons both in methods and practices. From low-till to no-dig to eventually arriving at, what we feel is the zenith of farming practices, Korean Natural Farming (KNF & JADAM). We use no machinery, just hand tools and we no longer crop rotate. All our inputs are made from ingredients sourced on the farm and in the surrounding hills. The sole function of the farm can be distilled down to soil management practices. We firmly believe that creating a richly diverse microbial ecosystem underpins plant health and soil vitality.

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Essay Series – Eliot Coleman “Questions for Organic Farmers to Discuss”

Essay Series – Eliot Coleman “Questions for Organic Farmers to Discuss”

“The most popularly embraced benefit of organic farming, according to customer surveys, is the prohibition of pesticides. What else should we be stressing and how should we present it? How can we better teach the public that the plant resistance to pests, which allows real organic farmers to avoid needing pesticides, is an outcome of growing on a balanced, biologically active fertile soil that, as scientific studies have consistently shown, induces pest and disease resistance in the crops in addition to enhancing their nutritional value?”

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The Earthly Marketplace

The Earthly Marketplace

The Earthly Marketplace by Lorna Anne Tierney, Founder    Calling all Independent Organic Growers from all over Ireland! Introducing The Earthy Marketplace; the first of its kind All-Ireland Resource Hub for Conscious Consumerism. We’re in search of...

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Essay Series – Eliot Coleman “The New Truth”

Essay Series – Eliot Coleman “The New Truth”

The New Truth by Eliot Coleman, Four Season Farm, Harborside, Maine   On Saturdays during the summer, I take the opportunity to chat with our farm stand (farm shop) customers while they are waiting in line. I mention to them, what is to me, a most significant...

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Christmas 2021 – Letter from the Chairperson

Christmas 2021 – Letter from the Chairperson

Christmas 2021 - Letter from the Chairperson     As another year draws to a close, I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of our members for their continued support. Much like 2020 this year has once again been affected with the Covid pandemic...

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SeameGro Trial at Airfield

SeameGro Trial at Airfield

SeameGro Trial (Airfield) Colm O'Driscoll, head gardener at Airfield, tells us about trialing a seaweed based plant biofertilizer.   Farming conference season is upon us with BioFarm 2021 and Future Growers Conference both taking place this month. The importance...

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A Fibreshed for Ireland

A Fibreshed for Ireland

A Fibreshed for Ireland by Malú Colorín    "The soil that feeds us is also the soil that clothes us." —Rebecca Burgess, founder & director of Fibershed   As we know, people are becoming ever more aware about the kind of food they consume, where it...

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A Day in the Life – Glasrai Farm

A Day in the Life – Glasrai Farm

A day in the life - Glasraí Farm by Maria McDonnell  From Winter to Summer When I started the apprenticeship in March everyone on the farm (Glasraí) talked about how wonderful the place looked in summer. I guess it was hard to imagine back then when it was...

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A day in the life

A day in the life

A Day in the Life (Summer 2021) Continuing our series of blogs by our current interns we hear from Sally who tells us about her impressions of visiting two successful organic horticultural enterprises Castleruddery Organic Farm (Hilda & Dominic Quinn) and...

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A day in the life….

A day in the life….

A day in the life... Maria, who is currently undertaking the OGI internship program in Organic Horticulture on Glasraí farm in Co. Mayo, tells us about one of the workshop days that she completed recently.   On June 1st we were in Cloughjordan Eco Village having...

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Can Organic Agriculture feed the world?

Can Organic Agriculture feed the world?

Can Organic Agricutlure Feed the World? by Noel Clinton  Before any discussion on whether organic farming methods can feed a growing world population is undertaken it is important to first take a quick look at how the current global food system (GFS) is managing...

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Seeds for the Future

Seeds for the Future

Seeds for the Future Jason HornerThe pandemic has been a time of huge upheaval, but from that upheaval, new opportunities have arisen. For example, growers have benefitted from an increased demand for fresh and local food, with sales figures for organic produce rising...

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Supervalu Food Academy Programme

Supervalu Food Academy Programme

My journey through the Food Academy Programme and ending up on the Supervalu shelves by Una Wycherley     I have been farming and growing for many years working and learning from some of whom I regard so highly in this profession, and I am very grateful for...

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Growing in a glasshouse

Growing in a glasshouse

Growing in a glasshouse by Oisín Kenny      2021 is year 9 for me as a market gardener, another 'year like no other'. It is at this time of year that spending the vast majority of my working days inside a 34m x 16m glasshouse pays its highest dividends....

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Horticultural Hindsight

Horticultural Hindsight

Everyone has advice for growers who are just starting out, the dos and don’ts, the little nuggets of wisdom given freely and with the best of intentions…

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Looking after your back

Looking after your back

When I was about 18, I started getting a niggle in the small of my back. At 20, I worked part time as a pizza chef, which involved a lot of core twisting, and being on your feet for 10 hours…

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Internship 2020

Internship 2020

The start of the year looked positive with about 35 applicants and 9 host farms all chomping at the bit for a new season of growth and learning!

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History of the OGI

History of the OGI

A Brief History of the OGI  By Jason Horner, January 2021 The Organic Growers of Ireland was first conceived as an idea on a farm walk (where else), back in the summer of 2008.  At the time it was felt that there was a need for a body to represent growers and who...

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Internship Programme 2020

Internship Programme 2020

A year ago, getting up at six in the morning during a pandemic to go harvest leeks in horizontal rain, probably wasn’t quite I had I mind. But here I am catching a smile on my face on the way to work. It’s hard not to love working with great people…

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Carrot root fly

Carrot root fly

Carrot root fly is the main pest of members of the carrot family, in both conventional and organic growing. There are no treatments for carrot root fly, only…

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OGI Farm Walks Kick Off

OGI Farm Walks Kick Off

The first OGI farm walk of 2013 took place on Eamonn and Geraldine McDonagh’s farm near Kilmaine, Co. Mayo on 17th June. The McDonaghs run a 30 acre mixed farm carrying a wide range of enterprises and the family is practically self-sufficient in food. They produce...

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OGI Annual Conference, 2013

OGI Annual Conference, 2013

Ireland could become one of the most productive regions in Europe for fruit and vegetables if climate change models turn out to be accurate, according to experts speaking at the Organic Growers of Ireland (OGI) Annual Conference in Birr, Co. Offaly on 20th February,...

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