Research

As an education center, Unadilla Community Farm is a site for experimentation and learning. We showcase a wide variety of sustainable farming techniques and conduct on-farm research to trial new methods, offer recommendations and provide replicable models for our interns and the broader farming community.

Unadilla Community Farm is currently serving as the research site to perform on-farm trials for the Northeast SARE project FNE20-967 on dynamic accumulators. This two-year research project began in February 2020 and will continue until December 2021. We completed the first year of the project, which involved establishing test rows for six promising dynamic accumulator species for Northeast farmers in zones 4+: redroot amaranth, red clover, lambsquarters, stinging nettle, Bocking-14 comfrey, and dandelion. This year, we also completed a series of soil tests on the test rows, as well as on a control row that is kept fallow. We presented our ongoing research on the Plant Cunning podcast, through a webinar with the Finger Lakes Permaculture Institute, during two on-farm seminars with the interns, and through an article published by the Permaculture Research Institute. 2021 will be the second phase of the research, when we will be tracking nutrient levels in the soil, and in mulches and liquid fertilizers derived from plant cuttings.

Nicole tending to the Amaranthus retroflexus