Items filtered by date: August 2019

Want to speak your mind about trends in the Maryland agricultural industry? Do you appreciate knowing that your voice is heard in Annapolis?

The Maryland Department of Agriculture in conjunction with the Harry R. Hughes Center for Agro-Ecology have joined forces to host four regional meetings across the state in order to create a strategic plan for agriculture as a whole. One previous session was held and moderated at Maryland Department of Agriculture headquarters in August (leadership from the Maryland Horse Council was in attendance).

The general public and industry leaders are encouraged to attend. A strong representation from the Maryland horse industry will ensure that equine priorities are recognized and considered in strategic planning.

Each of these sessions represents a region of the state. Space is limited and we encourage those who want to attend any of the regional sessions to RSVP to Lindsey Palmer at or 410-841-5831 as soon as possible.

  • Tuesday, September 17 (7 – 9 p.m.) – Charles County Soil Conservation District – 4200 Gardiner Rd, Waldorf, MD 20601
  • Wednesday, September 18 (7 – 9 p.m.) – Washington County Agricultural Education Center – 7313 Sharpsburg Pike, Boonsboro MD  21713-2431
  • Monday, September 30(7 – 9 p.m.) – Chesapeake College Eastern Shore Higher Education Center – 1000 College Circle, Wye Mills, MD 21679
  • Tuesday, October 1 (7 – 9 p.m.)– Maryland State Fairgrounds Administration Building – 2200 York Road, Lutherville-Timonium, MD 21093

The Harry R. Hughes Center for Agro-Ecology, Inc. is a 501 (c)(3) corporation affiliated with the University of Maryland College Park and the University System of Maryland.  Founded in 1999, the Center brings together diverse interests from the agricultural, forestry, and environmental communities for the purpose of retaining Maryland's working landscapes and the industries they support while protecting and improving the health of the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries.

Published in Legislative

Equine Pasture Management Field Day 

Sagamore Farm

University of Maryland (UMD) Extension

September 18, 2019

Take-Away Points

By: Jane Thery, Chair Farm Stewarship Committee

Maryland Horse Council Farm Stewardship Committee 

(1)  Erika Crowl ( ; 410-887-8090) is spearheading renewed outreach to the horse community. She will answer your questions and/or direct you to the best sources of farm stewardship technical and financial resources.

(2)  About 60 people attended the field day to learn about pasture management and to visit beautiful Sagamore Farm.

(3)  Grazing pastures should be 3-6” tall.  Should let pastures get to about 6-8" to start grazing and stop grazing at 3-4".

(4)  Rotational grazing - moving horses off pasture to let it grow and rotating them in small pastures to eat the whole field down - is the best way to maintain healthy pastures. 

(5)  A mix of grasses is best for all-season growing and soil health. Use orchard grass, tall fescue (find endophyte-free varieties), Kentucky bluegrass, timothy, reed canary grass (for wet areas), alfalfa, and red and white clover. 

(6)  Base your liming/fertilizing program on soil samples. UMD staff will help you analyze your soil test results. We can provide a list of recommended soil testing labs. Use composted horse manure to recycle nutrients. 

(7)  Wait until we get at least some rain this autumn before fall seeding and fertilizing. 

(8)  UMD will analyze your weeds. Take a photo and discuss weed management. 

(9)  Take into account pasture slope and moisture conditions in pasture management. 

(10)  Maryland law requires you to have a Nutrient Management Plan if you have eight or more animal units (1,000 lbs. equals 1 animal unit) and/or gross income of $2,500 a year.  UMD nutrient management consultants can provide you with a plan for free, based on your soil samples. 

Published in Farm Stewardship