A New Madison, Ohio couple who own a Kennedy Vineyard located at 3911 St. Rt. 722 in New Madison, Ohio, have expanded their business by adding four craft beers to their list of popular wines. This will make them the first official brewery in Darke County, Ohio.
The owners said they will have a separate brand name for their brewery but it will be doing business under their existing Kennedy Vineyard. Currently they are only offering four craft beers with a hearty oatmeal stout as their staple. They also have plans to add a seasonal beer and introduce regular variations with the other two beers.
The owners said their dark staple brew has been very popular so far. Since the brewery business is new to them, and not quite the same as running a vineyard, they have acquired the assistance of another brewery who will help them make choices that best fit their brewery.
With their name all ready to go and approved by the state of Ohio, and brewing equipment already making their way to the vineyard, they are just waiting for their license to get the ball rolling. They have chosen to get all of their beer-making ingredients from only local Ohio growers because they have no plans to grow their own hops any time soon.
The owners say for now they will be doing everything at their vineyard, which will allow them to remain focused on the local area. They have already stated plans to expand by adding a few more acres.
They decided to start their own brewery as an expansion to their winery when many of their customers who attended their events asked if they served beer. They didn’t just want to serve beer, they wanted to offer more. They wanted their beers to be handcrafted and the best that they could possibly offer their clients, just like their wine selections.
With wineries and breweries growing in popularity across the country, and especially Ohio, they saw a great opportunity to expand. They couldn't pass up the opportunity to become the first brewery in Darke County.
Ultimately, the goals for the owners is to meet all the needs of their customers. They have found that many of their customers enjoy a good craft beer just as much as a nice glass of wine. Another benefit of a brewery is the time it takes to produce a batch of beer is much less than a cask of wine. Where it takes about six months to produce a quality wine it only takes about 30 days for beer.
They expect to have a few craft beers for their customers to sample by their summer event, which will include dinner and a bottle of wine as well. If that’s not enough, the couple are even in discussions with a local company to have dinner items provided for their customers.
Their vineyard is located at a prime spot just off of Interstate 70, headed towards Indiana, and within a few hours drive from two of Ohio’s major cities.
Ohio’s Midwest region recently just finished planting their alfalfa in preparation for the winter. They’ll need it to keep their cattle fed through the off-season, but it’s not as easy as throwing out seeds into an open plot of turned soil.
One of alfalfa's biggest enemies are weeds, and before farmers start seeding their alfalfa in late spring, they have to be on the lookout for weeds. Yielding a healthy alfalfa crop is 95 percent reliant on weed control and keeping away competition for nutrients in the soil.
It’s suggested that farmers used the right fertilizer and an insect control method that is disease resistant. Using the right type of herbicides can help produce a good alfalfa crop and help control weeds significantly.
Weeds are not to be underestimated, if they get out of control they can interfere with everything alfalfa crops need for a successful, strong stem. They need light, space, and nutrients above all else. Interference from weeds can play a part in the type of crop that is produced and stability of the plant. Experts say that simply by keeping weeds in check, the yield for alfalfa could improve by about 8 percent.
Some tips to managing weeds when seeding alfalfa in the spring is to catch them before seeding. This is because weeds that grow with the crop are said to be the most competitive for water, space and nutrients. It’s also recommend that beds be kept weed-free for at least the first 60 days, and broadleaf weeds seem to be the most competitive for nutrients.
There are many types of weeds to keep in mind throughout the season, like summer weeds that can continue to pop up until June if the alfalfa stand is not a strong one. Perennial and biennial weeds can pop up after seeding, but the variants that cause the most problems for alfalfa stands are pigweed, ragweed and lambsquarters.
One way to control broadleaf weeds after seeding alfalfa is with herbicides like Bromoxynil, Pursuit or Raptor. But there’s always a risk with using any type of herbicide. Taking care to read the labels and following instructions very carefully, for the safety of the person spraying, and to keep crop injury to a minimum.
Herbicides like Clethodim and Poast are said to work well to keep annual grasses in check.
A little history and background on this crop favored by cattle, alfalfa is perennial plant that is part of the pea family and used as forage crop for cattle. It is also converted into a type of manure, among other helpful uses.
The plant itself looks much like a clover when its young but its leaves get longer as it matures. It is native to warmer climates. It’s used for a variety of things across the world, one of which, is as feed for livestock. The term alfalfa is only used in the United States however, in other countries it is called lucerne.