Thursday, October 15, 2009

Photos: Johnny's at Common Ground Fair

The Common Ground Country Fair, put on since 1977 by the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association, is always one of the most anticipated events on the fall calendar for many agriculturally-minded folks.

We were proud to be a part of the fair, which took place September 25 to 27 at the Unity Fairgrounds. The Johnny's display, the largest we've ever done, included a tent sale; a tools demonstration area; several vegetable and flower beds; the unveiling of two new pumpkin varieties (Racer Plus PMR and Champion) and a book signings by authors Eliot Coleman and Barbara Damrosch.

Here are a few photos from the fair.

Mary, a Johnny's Inventory Manager, shows off the two new pumpkin varieties -- Racer Plus PMR (left) and Champion (right).

Our greens garden did pretty well in the Fairgrounds soil.

The tools display was popular with fair goers. We enjoyed meeting new folks and helping them try out some of our favorite gardening tools in the demonstration area.

The "Bright Lights" Swiss chard we planted at the fair thrived. It was so beautiful and tasty looking that someone (probably not a woodchuck) helped themselves to a bunch of it. We brought the gourds from our farm in Albion.

This little gardener tests the strength of a low tunnel we assembled using Agribon row cover and hoops fabricated with a cool new Johnny's tool -- the Quick Hoops Bender.

Johnny's International Sales representative Josh shows how easy it is to create your own hoops with the Quick Hoops Bender using ordinary conduit.


Johnny's Seeds News said...

Paul: I'm not sure if those plastic clips are available. I am checking with one of our product developers. It may be something you could get where you might purchase conduit.

Johnny's Seeds News said...

To purchase the plastic sleeve clips, try this web site:

We used them on the low hoop houses as sort of trial run. Our experience was that they ripped the fabric.

Paul said...

Thanks, I guess I'll pass, I've heard that "rip" comment elsewhere. My low hoop house with Agribon survived 2" of snow here in Pennsylvania last evening! A great tool you folks have, I highly recommend it!

Anonymous said...

If the clips rip the fabric, what are you attaching the fabric to the hoops with. I have used the clips with the plastic film successfully, but I am concerned about using them with the fabric.

Johnny's Seeds News said...

We've tried different clips on fabric over the hoops with mixed results. We're using the big black office paper clips on the low tunnel in front of our retail store as you can see in this photo to tie off the ends. I think if you can get away without using as few clips as possible on the fabric, that is the way to go. By using an extra yard or two of Agribon, sand bags and/or partially burying the edges of the fabric to secure it and hold it down over the hoops, you should be able to keep even tension on it to prevent it from blowing and tearing. Adding clips in spots where there is tension has the potential to put a concentrated amount of stress on the fabric and increase the likelihood of a puncture.

Anonymous said...

Put a strip of tape on the plastic or Agribon before using the clip.