The Carolina Swap Meet for pigeons, bantams and other birds will be held Dec. 10 from 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at Everett Farm, 305 Macedonia Church Road, Monroe. For more information, contact Les Everett at 704-577-3905.
***As a reminder, peak-season fees now apply for soil samples submitted to the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services Agronomic Services Lab. Cost is $4 a sample through March 31. After that date, soil testing will be free to North Carolina residents.
***County governments and non-profit groups pursuing farmland preservation projects have until 5 p.m. on Dec. 16 to apply for funding assistance from the N.C. Agricultural Development and Farmland Preservation Trust Fund. This year’s request for proposals includes statewide general appropriations for traditional farm preservation projects and conservation easement applications to protect military-base and training buffers. The fund supports projects that encourage the preservation of qualifying agricultural, horticultural and forest lands to foster the growth, development and sustainability of family farms. Grants can be awarded to secure agricultural conservation easements on lands used for agricultural production; to support public and private enterprise programs that promote profitable and sustainable agricultural, horticultural and forestland activities; and for the development of agricultural plans. Military-designated grants are restricted to easement-related projects. The application and guidelines are available at www.ncadfp.org/CycleX.htm. Call 919-707-3072 with questions.
***Beekeepers with bees for rent and growers interested in bee pollination services can post their information on the BeeLinked website at www.ncagr.com/beelinked. The site is hosted by the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services and the N.C. State University Apiculture Program. Anyone interested in listing their information can do so by filling out an online Submit Your Ad form on the BeeLinked page or by contacting NCDA&CS at 919-233-8214 or by email at NCHoneybee@ncagr.gov or call NCSU at 919-515-1660. The NCDA&CS Plant Industry Division regulates the movement of agricultural or related items capable of spreading harmful insects, diseases, and other pests. Beekeepers participating in this program will be required to comply with all honey and bee industry regulations.
***The N.C. Ag Finance Authority provides credit to agriculture in areas where financing is not available at reasonable rates and terms. The agency originates, services and finances farm loans, rural business loans, disaster loans and cotton gin loans. It also offers tax-exempt ag development bonds for agribusiness processing, ag-related manufacturing or ag waste disposal. For more about Ag Finance Authority programs or to request a loan application, call 919-790-3949 or email at RequestLoanInfo@ncagr.gov.