Research & Demonstration

Check out the new film “Growing with the Grain”

This short film tells the story of the last five years of small grains research at the Hudson Valley Farm Hub. Thank you to Jon Bowermaster and Ocean 8 Films for making this beautiful film.

Applied Research:  The Farm Hub is developing a comprehensive applied research program that will be tailored to the Hudson Valley and focused on resilient agriculture and climate-smart farming practices. The Farm Hub provides a land-base for experimentation to support partnerships with research institutions, regional educators, and farmers. In this way, it is uniquely positioned to realize its intention to become a true center, or “hub,” for sharing information, innovations and ideas.

Projects on soil health, perennial grains, novel crops, riparian habitats and flood management are being developed in conjunction with Cornell University and other partners.  Research can also play a critical role in providing information to Hudson Valley farmers on production and marketing of new crops.  Ongoing research projects at the Farm Hub during the 2018 season include:

  • Small Grains Field Trials:  Identifying small grain varieties adapted to the Hudson Valley to support emerging interest in locally grown ingredients by bakers, brewers, distillers and specialty food processors.
  • Grain Corn and Soybean Rotation:  Developing conservation tillage, novel cover crop management and organic production methods.
  • Fusarium Fungus in Garlic: Two trials at the Farm Hub are evaluating methods for managing and reducing fusarium infection in garlic.
  • Wireworms: The Farm Hub is studying the use of beneficial nematodes to combat wireworm larvae in sweet potato crops.
  • Native Meadow Trial

Previous research trials at the Farm Hub include:

  • Root Crops Variety Trial: Evaluating thirty-one types of carrots, eighteen beets, and seven parsnips for yield, appearance, color, taste, and storage ability.
  • Tomato Variety Trial: Part of an ongoing Cornell Cooperative Extension program developing tomato lines with resistance to three destructive plant diseases: late blight, early blight, and septoria leaf spot.

Demonstration:  The farm offers a unique opportunity to enhance the land with state-of-the-art resilient agriculture and farmland conservation practices. Field tests of large-scale resilient production practices will be particularly educational for larger growers in the region. This year, a comprehensive mixed-species cover crop rotation was initiated on large fields at the Farm Hub to examine alternative approaches to field and soil management.

As Farm Hub operations are refined and site plans developed, the farm will be geared towards demonstrating farm-based alternative energy systems and innovations in farm equipment and green infrastructure.

We regularly host events for commercial farmers at the Farm Hub. Please visit our Events page for dates and details.                                                                                            

The Farm Hub also participates in the Network for Environment and Weather Applications and established a Rainwise weather station on the Farm Hub’s property in Hurley, New York in 2017.  In doing so, the Farm Hub contributes to a regional network that helps farmers make informed crop decisions. To view real-time weather conditions at the Farm Hub, click here.
Applied Farmscape Ecology Research and Demonstration explores the interface between farming and wild nature. This includes the documentation of on-farm biodiversity and its various roles for agricultural production. It also includes the development of techniques for managing on-farm habitats so as to support ecological services to the farm (e.g., pollination, pest control, carbon sequestration, soil health and erosion control) and the conservation of native biodiversity. This research is jointly coordinated by Farm Hub staff and the Hawthorne Valley Farmscape Ecology Program and involves a variety of collaborators.