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Expanding Specialty Mushroom Production on Urban and Rural Farms

Yolanda Gonzalez, Urban Agriculture Specialist
Harvest New York

July 8, 2019
Expanding Specialty Mushroom Production on Urban and Rural Farms

As a response to the growing demand for both mushrooms and technical production knowledge, Yolanda Gonzalez, Urban Agriculture Specialist from Harvest NY, and the Cornell Small Farms Program, along with partners Farm School NYC, Just Food, and Grow NYC, were recently awarded two multi-year grants.  The first grant is the USDA NIFA Grant "Expanding Specialty Mushroom Production on Urban and Rural Small Farms," which will engage growers, service provider organizations, and industry partners to enhance the collective knowledge base and capacity of farmers to grow specialty mushrooms and sell them profitably to local and regional markets within 250 miles of New York City.  The second grant is the Northeast SARE Professional Development Program "Spawning a network of northeast mushroom educators serving urban and rural farmer audiences," increasing the educational capacity through a network of Community Mushroom Educators throughout the region.

For questions about the mushroom projects, please contact Yolanda Gonzalez.

Find more information on mushroom production on Cornell's Specialty Mushroom Cultivation website.

Growing the Specialty Mushroom Industry in the NYC and Regional Foodshed (pdf; 259KB)

Upcoming Events

Urban Berry Project: Growing Strawberries 101

May 29, 2024
5:00 PM - 7:00 PM
Upper Manhattan, NY

Join Makela Elvy, Anya Osatuke, and Dan Olmstead from Cornell University, along with the NYRP Urban Ag team, for a deep dive into everything strawberry! For beginning gardeners and advanced growers alike, this hands-on workshop will include an introduction to some of the preferred NYC-loving varieties, as well as a chance to plant out a new bed of strawberries in the Riley-Levin Demonstration Garden. SPACE is LIMITED! Registration is required.

New York State Honeyberry Conference

June 29, 2024
8:30 am - 4:30 pm
Mexico, NY

Join CCE Oswego and CCE Harvest NY for a state-wide conference on a new emerging fruit called Honeyberry, also known as Haskap (Lonicera caerulea). Honeyberries are a dark blue color, like blueberries, but with a distinct oval shape. The taste is most associated with raspberry and blueberry, while also containing its own distinctive flavor. The fruit can grow in USDA Plant Hardiness zones 1 to 8 and can survive up to 30 years or longer if properly managed. What makes the fruit unique is that it ripens from the middle of June through early July. This allows the fruit to sit comfortably between the strawberry and blueberry season. When fully mature plants can produce 6 to 10 lbs. of berries, which can be eaten as a fresh fruit or made into value-added products.

The conference will cover the history of the fruit, best growing practices, processing, value-added production, and marketing. Guest speakers will include growers and researchers from the US and Canada, including Dr. Bob Bors from the University of Saskatchewan. Attendees will also be able to network and attend an optional farm tour immediately after the conference. 


Field Guide: Arthropod Pests of NYC Vegetables

Arthropod Pests of NYC Vegetables aims to help urban farmers and gardeners find, identify, and understand the most common and important insects and other arthropod pests found in New York City farms and gardens. Some of these pests are rarely mentioned in other guides but are common in NYC. The guide emphasizes scouting tips, including how to identify pests by the damage they leave behind, even when you can't find the insect itself.

This guide was created as a collaboration between Cornell Cooperative Extension's Harvest New York team and the New York State Integrated Pest Management Program.