Radio New Zealand: Country Life

This page lists items from RNZ that are identified as "Country Life". RNZ didn't start regularly putting both its audio and news content online until 2008. From 2002-2007 written news items (particularly from RNZ International) were placed online. You can access these items, plus the vast audio collecton from the mid-2000s onwards by using the day schedule pages. You can access items prior to 2002 on the historic page.

04/04/2008: Gidday and Guests
Hume Turnball on the beaut summer for farmers in Queensland. [more]

04/04/2008: Regional Conditions
Despite widespread rain only South Taranaki has broken the back of the northern drought. [more]

04/04/2008: Nashi Growers in Waikato
The state of Nashi industry with Waikato growers Warren Sexton and Ian Wallace. [more]

04/04/2008: Limehills Primary School Farm
A group of students aged between 5 and 11 run the farm school as part of their education. [more]

11/04/2008: The Loo Man
A barn full of toilets. [more]

11/04/2008: Intro and Guest
Landcare scientist Dr Andrea Byrom joins the show. [more]

11/04/2008: Regional Conditions
The Kiwifruit harvest is humming along and Marlborough grape harvesters are working 24 hour shifts to get the crop in. [more]

11/04/2008: Shetland Ponies
Diana Humphres runs the Cotswold Shetland Pony Stud and a re-homing centre for mistreated donkeys. [more]

11/04/2008: Caviar Production
Caviar, the salted roe of the sturgeon fish is one of the most expensive foods in the world. Wild caviar stocks have declined rapidly and caviar from farms will be the way of the future. Join in on a visit to a sturgeon farm in France. [more]

11/04/2008: The Poo Man
Mac McLaren takes us on a journey to clean out septic tanks. [more]

18/04/2008: Intro and Guest
New chair of the Rural General Practice Network, Kirsty Murrell McMillan. [more]

18/04/2008: Regional Conditions
Wonderful rain soaks into the ground in the North Island and in the South Island there are long queues to get lambs into works. [more]

18/04/2008: City Dwelling Bee Woman
Carol Downer is passionate about bees and says even city people can happily have their own hives. [more]

25/04/2008: Country Life - Intro and Guest
Hugh Gourlay on the Green Thistle beetle. [more]

25/04/2008: Country Life - North and South Regional Conditions
Grass is starting to take off around the country in mild conditions. [more]

25/04/2008: Country life - Farmer Tom
Tomoko Ishijima making her mark as a farm manager. [more]

25/04/2008: Country Life - The Rower
Richard Hamilton has swapped a career in international rowing for life on a New Zealand farm [more]

25/04/2008: Country Life - Naomi Bunker
Naomi Bunker: Her life on Banks peninsula [more]

02/05/2008: Intro and Guest
Jeroen Douwes is doing health research with farming families. To be part of the study should call 0800 000 544. [more]

02/05/2008: Regional Conditions
Mushrooms by the bucket full, rain damages infrastructure in Taranaki and snow arrives in the South Island. [more]

02/05/2008: For the Love of Old Tractors
David Bolton loves working on old tractors. The oldest he's repaired in recent years is a 1942 Fordson. [more]

02/05/2008: Mathamatics and Farming
Mathematics divided by farming equals the sum of happiness for Lorne Kuehn, formerly from Ottawa, Canada. [more]

09/05/2008: Intro and Guest
Win maker Guy porter harvests the grapes on his Bellbird Spring vineyard in Waipara, north Canterbury. [more]

09/05/2008: Regional Conditions
In the north it's turned wet and cold and in the south pruning gets underway. [more]

09/05/2008: Lord of the Rings
Deondocronolgist Jonathon Palmer is using tree rings to look at past climate change. [more]

09/05/2008: Shear Brilliance
Neil Sidwell's shorn ever since the early 60's and has been the manager of the New Zealand Shearing Team. [more]

16/05/2008: Intro and Guest
John Scott talks about a Gumboots 'n Opera concert fundraising for Hospice Waikato. [more]

16/05/2008: Regional Conditions
Grass growing in the north, cautious optimism for sheep and beef farmers and South Island dairy cows dry off.nil [more]

16/05/2008: Agrinews
A new dairy co and wool venture, agricultural and horticultural statistics, Environment Court on vineyard windmills. [more]

16/05/2008: Helping Hand by Kiwifruit Industry
Mental health patients are given work opportunities in Kiwifruit packhouses in Gisborne and Bay of Plenty. [more]

16/05/2008: A Day in the Life of Semen
Cosmo Kentish-Barnes finds out about the art of Semen collecting and cryogenic storage. [more]

18/05/2008: Life's a Boar
Cosmo Kentish-Barnes heads into the un-tamed backcountry behind Geraldine in Canterbury with hunter Bill Westward. [more]

23/05/2008: Intro and Guest
Recovery from a serious farm related injury at the Burwood Spinal Unit is going well for Mike Brock. [more]

23/05/2008: Regional Conditions
Grass growing in the north, cautious optimism for sheep and beef farmers and South Island dairy cows dry off. [more]

23/05/2008: A Snap-Happy Farmer
Farmer and keen photographer Ruth Renner runs a picture filled website detailing her farming week. [more]

23/05/2008: Kiwi Savers
Volunteers from Arthur's Pass are going out of their ways to save the remaining Spotted Kiwi's that live in the valley. [more]

23/05/2008: Copy of KiwiSavers
Volunteers from Arthur's Pass are going out of their ways to save the remaining Spotted Kiwi's that live in the valley. [more]

30/05/2008: Intro and Guest
Michael Malmo runs the yards that overnight cows traveling between the North and South Island. [more]

30/05/2008: Regional Conditions
There will be serious implications because of a winter drought from Waikato to Wellington and the South Island. [more]

30/05/2008: Agrinews
News Across the Tasman. Sheep numbers decline to the lowest in 80 years, drought still affects many farmers. [more]

30/05/2008: Meals on Wheels = Eels
Birdlings Flat character George Skipper reminices on his lifelong passion of eeling. [more]

30/05/2008: The Heavy Smoker
After losing his farm in 1989 Henry Studholme went from shearing sheep to smoking salmon and business is booming. [more]

06/06/2008: Regional Conditions
The winter drought in the north gets worse and in the South Island dairy farms close shop for winter. [more]

06/06/2008: Mad About Saffron
New Zealand Saffron producer Errol Hitt of Eight Moon Saffron sheds some light on this exotic spice. [more]

06/06/2008: Rural Poetry
Canterbury farmer Colin Patterson recites one of his poems. [more]

06/06/2008: There's Gold in Goats
Fibre and meat goats are both making farmers good money, more than sheep, and often more than cattle. [more]

13/06/2008: Intro and Guest
Stephen Ruddell on promoting New Zealand investment in the Chilean farming industry. [more]

13/06/2008: Regional Conditions
The north finally gets some rain and in the South Island the vineyards get pruned and the snow has arrived. [more]

13/06/2008: Science Matters
The flame is flickering on the Bunsen burner of agricultural science [more]

13/06/2008: Recipe - Cawl
This Welsh broth Cawl rhymes with foul and never at all should it rhyme with shawl. [more]

13/06/2008: Queen of the Castle
Philanthropist and author Christine Fernyhough is learning how to be a successful farmer on her Castle Hill Station. [more]

20/06/2008: Country Life Intro and Guest
Architect John Coop on residential rural development of the future. [more]

20/06/2008: Primary Industry interview
Chief excecutive of Landcorp, Chris Kelly sheds light on the Emmissions Trading Scheme. [more]

20/06/2008: Cariboo - A Local Sucsess Story
A small North Canterbury business that makes baby products is taking on the world. [more]

20/06/2008: Back to School
Putaruru is home to the NZ Cheese School. Would-be cheese-makers from Hong Kong to Gore took part in the inaugural course. [more]

26/06/2008: Intro and Guest
The South Island Dairy Event, employing staff and Robin Greer. [more]

27/06/2008: Intro and Guest
AgResearch Education adviser Colin Nicol is trying to spark interest in science in schools. [more]

27/06/2008: Regional Wrap
There've been dustings of snow in both islands and spectacular thunderstorms in the north. [more]

27/06/2008: Tonga's Tinopai Farm
Pousima Afeaki manages a farm that produces taro, coconuts, vanilla, and other crops for export. [more]

27/06/2008: Tonga's Going To Market
Farmers' markets are popping up around the country - with more and more people choosing to buy locally grown produce. [more]

04/07/2008: Intro and Guest
John Gould of the Arundel Lumber Company in Canterbury [more]

04/07/2008: Primary Focus
Irish dairy farmer and dairy commentator Mike Murphy believes dairy farming in New Zealand has a bright future [more]

04/07/2008: East Meats West
Egyptian-born butcher Saad Nassar of Halal New Zealand meat talks about the Halal process and why it is so important to Muslims. [more]

04/07/2008: Gallagher Turns
The Waikato based firm Gallagher, revolutionize the grassland-farming world wide with the development of the electric fence. [more]

11/07/2008: Intro and Guest
Jock Phillips - Historian and editor of the online encyclopedia of New Zealand. [more]

11/07/2008: Regional Conditions
Frosts and snow hit many North and South Island areas. Calving has started in Waikato. [more]

11/07/2008: Eco-n Technology
Developed by Professors Keith Cameron and Hong J Di, Eco-n uses cows urine to boosts grass growth. [more]

11/07/2008: The House of Horse
Michael House has gone from stable boy to successful racehorse trainer, breeder and ready-to-run pioneer. [more]

18/07/2008: Intro and Guest
A 1948 recording of an interview with George Matheson. [more]

18/07/2008: Primary Focus
In this weeks primary focus we talk to Ross Aimer of Ravensdown about the growing cost of fertilser. [more]

18/07/2008: Sexed Semen
Farmers are digging deep into their pockets to buy sexed semen from New Zealand bulls. Steve Foresman. [more]

18/07/2008: Shedding Light On...
Bobby calves. [more]

18/07/2008: Life's a Boar
Cosmo Kentish-Barnes heads into the un-tamed backcountry behind Geraldine in Canterbury with hunting dog trainer, Bill Westward. [more]

25/07/2008: Intro and Guest
Scientist Dr Mark Goodwin and the fungus that kills the varroa mite. [more]

25/07/2008: Regional Wrap
A look at farming conditions around the country. [more]

25/07/2008: Made on the Farm
Yogurt maker Ad Sintenie has teamed up with organic dairy farmers Bryan and Jackie Clearwater to produce a natural yogurt. [more]

25/07/2008: Hungarian Deli
Istvan Muik fled Hungary as a political refugee. He now makes European smallgoods and supplies the Clevedon farmers' market. [more]

25/07/2008: Oh My Dear
Peel Forest Estate in South Canterbury is a premiere red deer stud owned by Englishman Graham Carr. [more]

01/08/2008: Intro and Guest
Stonecarver Ian Andersen makes sure tourists don't leave Oamaru empty handed. [more]

01/08/2008: This Little Pig Went to Market
Bacon from Bulls is possible and Michelle Fox is marketing pork and bacon for five pig producers from her Bulls Shop. [more]

01/08/2008: From Paddock to Plate
From their small farm in North Otago Bob and Grace Neill produce high quality Limousin beef and sell it direct to the public. [more]

01/08/2008: Primary Focus
The CEO of New Zealand Pork, Sam McIvor talks about pork consumption in New Zealand and what's happening with pork marketing. [more]

01/08/2008: Catching Kiwi and Kissing Kaka
Huatahi,a little kiwi from Maungatautari in Waikato, is having his plunket visit. [more]

02/08/2008: This Little Pig Went to Market
Bacon from Bulls is possible and Michelle Fox is marketing pork and bacon for five pig producers from her Bulls Shop. [more]

08/08/2008: Intro and Regional Wrap
The North Island had a chance to dry out mid week and Central Otago's had a dream winter. [more]

08/08/2008: The Annabells of Moeawatea
No phone, no power and no road. Graeme and Pam Annabell spent their farming life inland from Waverly near Wanganui. [more]

08/08/2008: Farming Texels and Outro
Oamaru sheep farmer Robert Hughes believes Texels have the meat in all the right places. [more]

15/08/2008: Intro and Colostrum
The first five days of milk produced by a cow is worth three times more than normal milk. Country life takes a closer look. [more]

15/08/2008: Intro and Guest
Steve Bush and his team at Trees for Canterbury are making their region greener. [more]

15/08/2008: Comfortable Cows
Leo Timms is a US dairy researcher who says cows with soft beds produce more milk, and he comments about crops and manure. [more]

15/08/2008: Regional Conditions
Some parts of the North island saw welcome sunshine this week, while North Canterbury was inundated with rain. [more]

15/08/2008: Preserving Apple Tree Genes
Wayne Hollows is involved with Otago's Tree Crops Association. An interest in apples has led him to the art of cider making. [more]

15/08/2008: Carrot Juice
Twenty truck loads of carrots are squeezed for their juice each day at a new Timaru plant. [more]

15/08/2008: A Livestock Agent's Day
Bill Harrison's a King Country stock agent who knows every car on back country roads and every face at the Te Kuiti Saleyards. [more]

15/08/2008: Shear Delight
The Mullins family has a passion for shearing and a heart for young folk needing a second chance. [more]

21/08/2008: Intro and Guest
Stuart King dairy farms in North Eastern Waikato. He coped with a drought in summer, and now there's been rain for six weeks. [more]

21/08/2008: Intro and Guest
Stuart King dairy farms in North Eastern Waikato. He coped with a drought in summer, and now there's been rain for six weeks. [more]

21/08/2008: Regional Conditions
Cold and wet conditions hound farmers in the North Island. The South Island is also wet underfoot but that suits some. [more]

21/08/2008: Icelandic Horses
German couple Richard and Christel Vinbrux have settled in North Otago where they're breeding Icelandic horses. [more]

21/08/2008: Mussel Farming
Marlborough Sounds is famous for its deep, clear water that produces top quality mussels. Anna Tait-Jamieson checks the crop. [more]

22/08/2008: Intro and Guest
Stuart King dairy farms in North Eastern Waikato. He coped with a drought in summer, and now there's been rain for six weeks. [more]

22/08/2008: Regional Conditions
Cold and wet conditions hound farmers in the North Island. The South Island is also wet underfoot but that suits some. [more]

22/08/2008: Icelandic Horses
German couple Richard and Christel Vinbrux have settled in North Otago where they're breeding Icelandic horses. [more]

22/08/2008: Mussel Farming
Marlborough Sounds is famous for its deep, clear water that produces top quality mussels. Anna Tait-Jamieson checks the crop. [more]

29/08/2008: Intro and Guest
Steve Bush and his team at Trees for Canterbury are making their region greener. [more]

29/08/2008: Regional Conditions
Some parts of the North island saw welcome sunshine this week, while North Canterbury was inundated with rain. [more]

29/08/2008: Carrot Juice
Twenty truck loads of carrots are squeezed for their juice each day at a new Timaru plant. [more]

29/08/2008: Shear Delight
The Mullins family has a passion for shearing and a heart for young folk needing a second chance. [more]

05/09/2008: Intro and Guest
John Fegan takes issue with a comment this week about dairy farmers not paying their staff enough money. [more]

05/09/2008: Regional Conditions
A generally fine week in the North Island, but the South Island's East Coast got some rain. [more]

05/09/2008: Offal Exports
Energetic Angela Payne owns Agri-Lab Co-Products, a company specialising in dissecting animals. [more]

05/09/2008: The Riverstone Revival
After years of dairy farming with husband Neil in North Otago, Dot Smith converted a farm shed into a kitsch and gift shop. [more]

12/09/2008: Intro, Guest and Feedback
Peter Schouten lost many cows to a flooded Eyre River several weeks ago. [more]

12/09/2008: Primary Focus Soapbox
Lachie Grant and Sarah Dudin say soils are the powerhouse of a farm. Their mantra: match land use with land type [more]

12/09/2008: The Butcher's Apprentice
Dayna Marshall is only 17 (and obviously female) and a butcher trainee in a busy outlet in a Hamilton city suburb. [more]

12/09/2008: Penguin Hostel
Janice Jones set up the Kakanui Penguin colony. She's also written about her life with penguins... from a penguin's perspective. [more]

12/09/2008: Zakar Beef
Martin Grant and Miranda Marsh run an organic beef farm in South Auckland with its own farm butchery. [more]

19/09/2008: John Reeve
John Reeve of the Food Safety Authority on melamine in milk. [more]

19/09/2008: Regional Conditions
The docking irons come out in the North, while most of the South Island has been basking in the hot sun. [more]

19/09/2008: Making spaghetti out of meat
Making spaghetti out of meat...will it tempt the kids? [more]

19/09/2008: Feature Country Parish
Reverend Ken Light is the vicar of the Glenmark Church in the heart of North Canterbury. [more]

26/09/2008: Hazel Riseborough
Hazel Riseborough talks about her book Shear Hard Work. [more]

26/09/2008: Regional Conditions
A fine week in the North Island as lambing comes to an end and the South Island's covered in spring blossom. [more]

26/09/2008: Occasional Series
Dave Miller on the meaning of the farming term commonly known as... AB [more]

26/09/2008: A Fine Blend
Winemaker Guy Porter gets closer to his dream of producing Bellbird Spring vineyard's first bottled wine. [more]

26/09/2008: Serving It Up At Wimbledon
Former Auckland lawyer Emmeline Gadsby runs the unique pub that's located on Cape Turnagain in Southern Hawkes bay. [more]

03/10/2008: Intro and Drought
There are early signs of a dry start to summer. [more]

03/10/2008: Regional Conditions
North Island grass growth's a bit slow and frosts tickle the Southern North Island and South Island. [more]

03/10/2008: Agri News
A campaign for a $150 lamb, dung bettles, robot milking and science lessons don't engage youngsters. [more]

03/10/2008: Having a Blast
Ian Park, Roger Readington and Giles Russell love blowing things up. Today's job: a 500 metre long boggy drain in Manawatu. [more]

03/10/2008: Kakanui Willow
Vannier Mike Lilian has been weaving for twenty-five years and is one of only two or three full time willow weavers in NZ. [more]

10/10/2008: Intro and the 2008 Grasslands Conference
Whats on this year with Grasslands chairman Dr John Caradus. [more]

10/10/2008: Regional Conditions
North Island grass growth's a bit slow and frosts tickle the Southern North Island and South Island. [more]

10/10/2008: Wheat Out Of Ten
Canterbury farmer Alastair Barnett is New Zealand's top feed wheat grower for the second year running. [more]

10/10/2008: Arborist Reginald Day (circa 1948)
A 1948 peacetime mobile radio unit interview with Reginald Day who talks about New Plymouth's wonderful trees. [more]

10/10/2008: Milking Buffalo
Helen and Richard Dorresteyn have been perfecting the art of milking buffalo, turning the porcelain white milk into mozzarella. [more]

17/10/2008: Intro and Guest
Locusts once again plague the Australian State of New South Wales. [more]

17/10/2008: Regional Conditions
Most North Island regions got some rain on Thursday night while Canterbury dries out. [more]

17/10/2008: Agri News
Farming Systems Uruguay halts development, milk tanker driver shortage delays milk pickups and new kiwifruit being bred. [more]

17/10/2008: Tender Meat
AgResearch scientists have come up with the ideal way of telling how tender a piece of meat will be without taking a bite. [more]

17/10/2008: Asparagus Breeding
Asparagus breeder and grower, Dr Peter Falloon talks about this slender green lilly you eat in spring. [more]

24/10/2008: Intro and Guest
Whitebaiter's try thier luck at Granite Creek near Karamea on the West Coast. [more]

24/10/2008: Regional Conditions
In the North Island the first avocado exports for the season have started and in the south chilly winds cool a warm spring. [more]

24/10/2008: Fleeced
North Otago wool spinner and weaver Doe Arnot talks about her work that sells at the Oamaru Textile Exchange. [more]

24/10/2008: Williams Land Feature
Developer Evan Williams works on the Purerua Peninsula ; a stunning piece of land in the Bay of Islands. [more]

31/10/2008: Intro and Guest
Joan Baker has written a book to help with succession planning - Your Last Fencepost, Retirement Planning for NZ Farmers. [more]

31/10/2008: Regional Conditions
In the North Island temperatures are cooler than usual and windy and in the south tailing ends and cow mating gets underway. [more]

31/10/2008: Ruakura's Transgenic Farm
Dr Jimmie Suttie, Tim Hale and Dr Vish Vishwanath on AgResearch's transgenic cows and where GM technology may go in the future. [more]

31/10/2008: Good as Gold
Evan and Jane Birchfield run a successful open cast gold mining business in Ross, a small town near Hokitika on the West Coast. [more]

07/11/2008: Intro and Guest
The Opuha Dam Water Management project is the supreme winner of this year's Environment Canterbury's resource management award. [more]

07/11/2008: Regional Conditions and Feedback
The weather's been abysmal all over the country. Cold, windy and wet in the North Island and snowing in many South Island spots. [more]

07/11/2008: Fishing at Westport
Ian McKenzie is a hard nosed fisherman in Westport. He talks about the state of the local industry. [more]

07/11/2008: The Bugs Stop Here
Laurie Meadows spends his days opening parcels as part of MAF's Biosecurity team at the international mail centre in Auckland. [more]

14/11/2008: Intro and Guest
Jason Greene has been named New Zealand's Young Horticulturist of the Year. [more]

14/11/2008: Regional Conditions
The weather's warmed up and rain is needed before summer arrives. [more]

14/11/2008: Putting Piopio on the map
The small King Country town of Piopio is about to be rejuvenated. [more]

14/11/2008: Essential Oil
Organic farmers Margaret and Hamish McBeth extract tea tree oil from their plantation at Karamea. [more]

21/11/2008: Intro and Guest
Bill Floyd at the inaugural World Blackcurrent Conference in Christchurch. [more]

21/11/2008: Regional Conditions
The weather's warmed up and rain is needed before summer arrives. [more]

21/11/2008: Agri News
Nelson orchardists are praising the Pacific Islander seasonal recruitment scheme. [more]

21/11/2008: Paddocks have ups and downs too...
West Coast farmer Leigh Kees talks about the West Coast technique of humping and hollowing. [more]

21/11/2008: Cracking The Nut
Chris Jury and Daniela Krumm run Greenacres, a picturesque organic macadamia nut and avocado orchard in Taranaki. [more]

28/11/2008: Intro and Guest
Paul Brown talks about the Child Fund. [more]

28/11/2008: Regional Conditions
North Island farmers are very nervous about dry conditions and parts of the South Island have experienced floods. [more]

28/11/2008: Peonies at Raurimu
Tim Sklenars moved from sheep and beef farming south of Hamilton to Raurimu to grow flowers. Many thought he was mad, but he's never been happier and makes more money off 20 acres there, than he did on his 400 acre unit. [more]

28/11/2008: Changing habits
Vaughan is carving a series of splendid vegetable gardens out of the bush on his property in the coal mining hills, near Westport on the West Coast. He is also on the local methadone programme and runs the smallest community radio station in New Zealand. [more]

05/12/2008: Intro
Introduction of Country Life. [more]

05/12/2008: Regional Conditions
In the North Island it's been hot and dry and in the South there's been some rain but more is needed. [more]

05/12/2008: A well oiled machine
Anne and Brian Opie talk about the challenges of producing top quality olive oil on their Stone River Grove in Wairarapa. [more]

05/12/2008: Teenagers at Tihoi
Each year St Paul's Collegiate sends its Year 10 boys off to school deep in the countryside. [more]

12/12/2008: Intro and guest
Frank van Rijen grows tomatoes in Waikato. Prices have plummeted and he's giving fruit away at his gate. [more]

12/12/2008: Regional conditions
The East Coast of the North Island is looking desperately dry again, while in the South Island Otago is turning green. [more]

12/12/2008: Vin du terroir
Waipara winemaker Guy Porter bottles his first vintage of Bellbird Spring wine and gets his first sale soon after. [more]

12/12/2008: Treeclimbing
A great bunch of local and international characters congregated in Hamilton for the National tree climbing competitions. [more]

12/12/2008: The sheep whisper
Canterbury wool classer and sheep racing trainer David Cone drills his sheep into shape in a paddock outside Christchurch. [more]

19/12/2008: Greeting and North Island look back
Last summer and autumn's drought has had impact on nearly all farming systems for the entire calendar year. [more]

19/12/2008: A wee blooper interlude
Recording interviews can be challenging both out in the field, and back in the studio. [more]

19/12/2008: South Island look back
Consultants give a thumb nail sketch of the year that was. [more]

19/12/2008: Vertigo station
Steve Knudson farms in remote Taranaki hill country. A good year is when he breaks even, the farm is marginal. [more]

19/12/2008: Making a cut
The West Coast has attracted a lot of talented and interesting crafts people. [more]

27/12/2008: Zakar Beef
Martin Grant and Miranda Marsh run an organic beef farm in South Auckland. [more]

27/12/2008: George Skipper
Birdlings Flat character George Skipper reminisces on his lifelong passion of eeling. [more]

27/12/2008: A Mucky Business
Northland's Mac McLaren has been cleaning septic tanks for 30 years. [more]

03/01/2009: My favorite genes
Lorne Kuehn is a mathematician and scientist turned farmer, who has been preserving the genes of rare breeds animals. [more]

03/01/2009: A love for the land
Graeme Annabel grew up in the Waitotara Valley before buying his own piece of dirt in a neighboring valley at Moeawatea. [more]

05/01/2009: Intro and guest
A range of Keratin hair products has been developed by Christchurch hairdresser Mike Hamel. [more]

05/01/2009: Regional wrap
North Is farmers would be very happy if the skies opened this weekend and in the South Is farmers have been busy making hay. [more]

05/01/2009: Effluent to Energy
Canterbury based electrical power engineer, Ian Bywater has developed an effluent-to-energy system for dairy units. [more]

05/01/2009: Farms for families
18 of Auckland Regional Council's 26 parks are working farms. The public is welcome to wander through the paddocks. [more]

10/01/2009: Wimbledon Pub
Miles from anywhere in southern Hawkes Bay the historic Wimbledon Pub has a loyal group of regulars. [more]

10/01/2009: The Self Sufficient Vinbrux
German couple Richard and Christel Vinbrux have settled in North Otago and breed Icelandic horses. [more]

10/01/2009: A Day Out Livestock Buying
Bill Harrison works as a livestock agent for PGG Wrightson in Te Kuiti, his days are long, busy and varied. [more]

17/01/2009: Back to School
Putaruru is home to the New Zealand Cheese School. Would-be cheese-makers from Hong Kong to Gore took part. [more]

17/01/2009: War and Peace
Jack Spanbroek is a Dutch immigrant who has led a very interesting life, not just in NZ but back in his home country. [more]

24/01/2009: Catching Kiwi and Kissing Kaka
Huatahi,a little kiwi from Maungatautari in Waikato, is having his plunket visit. Also we meet three kaka and two takahe. [more]

24/01/2009: Hungarian Deli
Istvan Muik fled Hungary as a political refugee. He now makes European smallgoods and supplies the Clevedon farmers' market. [more]

24/01/2009: The Riverstone Revival
After years of dairy farming in North Otago, Dot Smith converted a farm shed into a wonderfully crowded gift shop. [more]

30/01/2009: Intro and Regional Wrap
It's been hot and dry in the North Island, but apart from Wairarapa and parts of Hawkes Bay farms are holding up. [more]

30/01/2009: Guest - Jenny Leith
Jenny Leith and her husband have grown blackcurrants in Upper Moutere for nearly 30 years. [more]

30/01/2009: AgResearch's Six Million Dollar Dairy Conversion
A Tokanui farm is being converted from dry stock into a 200ha dairy unit with two rotary milking sheds, running about 800 cows. [more]

30/01/2009: What's In A Name
News this week that British cows with names produce more milk rang true for one chook owner. [more]

30/01/2009: Yes Minister
David Carter is the new Government Minister for Agriculture, Bio-security and Forestry. [more]

06/02/2009: Intro and guest
A range of Keratin hair products has been developed by Christchurch hairdresser Mike Hamel. [more]

06/02/2009: Regional wrap
North Is farmers would be very happy if the skies opened this weekend and in the South Is farmers have been busy making hay. [more]

06/02/2009: Effluent to Energy
Canterbury based electrical power engineer, Ian Bywater has developed an effluent-to-energy system for dairy units. [more]

06/02/2009: Farms For Families
The Auckland Regional Council has 26 regional parks and 18 of those are working farms. [more]

10/02/2009: Regional wrap
Some parts of the Nth Is received good rain, but it is still very dry. In the Sth Is farms have been busy soaking up the rain. [more]

13/02/2009: Intro and guest
Intro and guest. [more]

13/02/2009: Regional wrap
Parts of the North Island received good rain. In the South Island farms have been busy soaking up the rain. [more]

13/02/2009: Watermelon growing
Geoff McKeown is a watermelon grower in the Bay of Plenty and has to protect his crop from night time thieves. [more]

13/02/2009: My yurt is my castle
Peter Laszlo and his artist wife Rosie arrived in New Zealand a couple of years ago after selling their small farm in France. [more]

20/02/2009: Intro and guest
Caroline Ballwood - The Grey Valley Riding Club. [more]

20/02/2009: Shedding the light
Exploring the terms fat lamb, store lamb, live vs carcass weight and yield, and terminal sires, plus what's with lamb prices. [more]

20/02/2009: Legendary Australian wool classer
We talk to the legendary Australian wool classer Gordon McMaster. [more]

20/02/2009: Pinetree Meads' Pinetree Farm
Colin Meads may be a rugby legend, but in the IHC world he's also idolised. [more]

27/02/2009: Intro and Feature Trailer
Looking at one man's property north east of Melbourne after the bush fires swept through. [more]

27/02/2009: Regional Wrap
Nearly every region of the country's had significant rainfall and pastures are green, however Poverty Bay's still parched. [more]

27/02/2009: Hoofball - Soccer for Horses
Two Waikato women are promoting hoofball as an ideal way to exercise horses for those too chicken for polocrosse. [more]

27/02/2009: The Rampage of the Australian Bushfires
Chum Creek's a community to the north east of Melbourne. It lost more than 10% of its homes in the February 7 fires. [more]

06/03/2009: Intro and Gisborne Saleyards
Len Hall talks about sheep and beef farming in Poverty Bay. [more]

06/03/2009: North Canterbury Farm Day
Richard Spencer Bower farms on one of the first properties established in the Waimakariri district. [more]

06/03/2009: Poverty Bay Farm Day
The Faulkners and Grahams farm Wairakaia Station. A mixed operation with sheep, beef, citrus, squash and seed maize. [more]

06/03/2009: Waikato Farm Day
More than 300 people turned up to Kathy and Doug Bentham's goat farm in Waikato. [more]

13/03/2009: Intro and Guest
Canterbury A2 dairy farmer Chris Prattley. [more]

13/03/2009: Regional Wrap
Facial eczema spore counts explode in the north and in the South Island its been a cooler week as farmers prepare for winter. [more]

13/03/2009: Out of the ashes
Lyn Mullens prepares to rebuild her life and her farm in Dixon's Creek, Victoria. [more]

13/03/2009: Sustainable living
West Coast bushman Mike Toseland is an anti-1080 campaigner who is also passionate about the sustainable lifestyle. [more]

20/03/2009: Intro and Guest
World Potato Congress chairman Terry Olsen. [more]

20/03/2009: Regional Wrap
Grass growth is bolting away over much of the North Island and in the South Island. [more]

20/03/2009: Kiwiberries OOT
Thousands of trays of miniature, hairless kiwifruit are exported each year. [more]

27/03/2009: Intro and Regional Wrap
Facial eczema is killing cows and calves in the North Island, and in the South Island lamb and calf prices have been excellent. [more]

27/03/2009: The Hobnail Boot
The Mainland Boot Company has started making traditional working boots using designs and techniques from boot maker, J.B. Frame. [more]

27/03/2009: An Apple to Envy
It's apple-picking time and Enza says an extra special variety will start coming off the trees midway through next week, Envy. [more]

27/03/2009: Okain's Bay
Murray Thacker's lived on Banks Peninsula all his life where he farms beef cattle on his 1700-acre ocean view property. [more]

03/04/2009: Spotlight on Spuds
Robin Oakley started growing potatoes at the age of five...he's still growing them and now employs 35 staff in Canterbury. [more]

03/04/2009: Intro and Guest
Tony and Jenny Cornelius talk about a Citrus Symposium held in China late last year, and the NZ crop. [more]

03/04/2009: Regional Wrap
Light frosts are starting to tickle a few areas in the North Island and the top of the South is having the best autumn in years [more]

03/04/2009: The Old Stone Kitchen
In 1880 a stone kitchen was built as farm on a South Waikato farm, it's now one, if not the, oldest building in the region. [more]

10/04/2009: Intro and guest
Ag Research Animal Genomics scientist Grant Shackell showcases the new SnipChip technology at the 2009 South Island Field Days. [more]

10/04/2009: Regional wrap
A cold snap has rattled up the country this week bringing a little rain to many places, plus snow and hail. [more]

10/04/2009: The dogs bark
The UK supermarket chain Tesco asked if NZ meat plants could tone down dogs behaviour, maybe get rid of them altogether. [more]

10/04/2009: Pony power
Pam Bennett has had an accident-prone life but this has not stopped her from getting huge satisfaction from her Welsh Ponies. [more]

10/04/2009: Summerhill recreational farm
David and Cloie Blackley have set up an academy to help young people into the workforce. [more]

17/04/2009: Intro and Regional Wrap
It's extremely dry in Poverty Bay, elsewhere in the North Island is dry but still looks green. The South Island also needs rain. [more]

17/04/2009: Cows in space
Lely Dairy Project Manager Christian Pearse-Danker talks about the Astronaut 3, a totally robotic milking machine. [more]

17/04/2009: Clutha Dam Comment
Different perspectives on Contact Energy's Clutha River dam proposals. [more]

17/04/2009: The big apple
It's apple harvesting time in the Nelson region and Dennis Cassidy's orchard near Rabbit Island is a hive of activity. [more]

24/04/2009: Intro and guest
Dorothy Oakley talks about the Canterbury Rural Support Trust that she co-founded in 1984. [more]

24/04/2009: Regional wrap
It's dry as a bone over most of the country and everyone's hoping the forecast rain arrives for a change. [more]

24/04/2009: High country boys
A poem by Roger Cross. [more]

24/04/2009: The good life
Home schooling, organic garlic growing and cows are all part of Neville and Sue Sinclair's world. [more]

24/04/2009: The big cheese
Gisborne based, multi award winning Waimata Cheese has been making hand crafted wheels for 15 years. [more]

01/05/2009: Intro and regional wrap
Wet on the North Island but dry on the East Coast. South Island grape harvesting came to an end just as the rain starts to fall. [more]

01/05/2009: Setting up for duck shooting
Just how much can you spend on the correct gear? Dave Shaw sells the gear from his Hamilton based shop. [more]

01/05/2009: Wright's wines
Geoff and Nicola Wright laboured away, hand cutting terraces into their steep hillsides for a grape vineyard. [more]

01/05/2009: Falcons for Grapes
A project called Falcons for Grapes is slowly building up the New Zealand Falcon population. [more]

08/05/2009: Intro and Guest
The Enterprise Ashburton initiative will school up secondary school Principal's knowledge of the agribusiness in Mid Canterbury. [more]

08/05/2009: Regional Wrap
The North Island have had to reach for their wet weather gear this week and in the South winter has made its presence felt. [more]

08/05/2009: It's all bull
St Arnaud farmers Malcolm and daughter Rebecca McConachie breed prize-winning Hereford sires at Lake Station. [more]

08/05/2009: What A Buzz
It's been a busy season for live bee exports to Canada for Russell Berry of Arataki Honey and James Ward of Kintail Honey. [more]

08/05/2009: The Tea's Made
The Chen family have spent 13 years nurturing tea bushes in Waikato. [more]

15/05/2009: Intro and guest
Brian Megaw runs River Valley Lodge near Taihape. Eighty-five percent of its visitors are from overseas. [more]

15/05/2009: Regional wrap
The North Island was battered by cold, wet weather and in the South Island dairy farmers are drying off earlier that usual. [more]

15/05/2009: Wool away
New Zealand school principal Sheree Alabaster is the current world champion wool handler. [more]

15/05/2009: Art that mooves you
Artist Sally Burton in her studio on the Waimea plains near Nelson on her latest body of work. [more]

22/05/2009: Intro and guest
Lynn Fiebig celebrating 25 years of the IHC calf scheme. [more]

22/05/2009: Regional wrap
Both Islands were battered by cold, wet, snowy miserable weather. [more]

22/05/2009: Pig out not in
Spencer and Jacqui Johnstone have transformed their 40 acre lifestyle block in mid Canterbury into a successful free range pork producing business. [more]

22/05/2009: How to sex a kumara and other stories
Theo and Joselyn Marama grow organic olives, lavender, kumara and other crops near Gisborne. With a ready laugh and a generous spirit, they live life to the full. [more]

29/05/2009: Intro and Guest
Sandy Scarrow of Fruitian Horticulture updates the kiwifruit season. [more]

29/05/2009: Regional wrap
Cows are moving home this weekend and in the south wither setlles in with chilly frosts around the Island. [more]

29/05/2009: Poverty Bay forestry
Sheldon Drummond of Juken NZ says Poverty Bay's forestry industry is stable and has many career opportunities, and its mushroom growing venture's going well. [more]

29/05/2009: Dry-as-a-bone
Inspirational dryland farmer and mentor Doug Avery has changed the way he farms in order to combat the drought's that have plagued the East Coast of Marlborough for many years. [more]

05/06/2009: Intro and Guest
Marlborough sounds barge operator Peter Johnson. [more]

05/06/2009: Going nuts
Darfield couple Jenny and Malcolm Lawrence purchase walnuts in shell from properties throughout New Zealand. The walnuts are then stored, cracked and graded for sale to the hospitality and retail sectors. [more]

05/06/2009: Taihape Area School
Taihape's new area school opened its doors in February. It boasts the most up-to-date technology and a particularly talented, hamonica-toting teacher. [more]

12/06/2009: Intro and guest
The National Fieldays theme is My Land, Our Environment. Dr Jon Tanner talks about expansion in organic production. [more]

12/06/2009: Intro and guest
North Canterbury farmer Philippa Summerville talks about the 'Quadmate' carry container that she and her husband Peter were showcasing at this years South Island Field Days in Lincoln. [more]

12/06/2009: Regional wrap
The North Island had plenty of rain but no grass growth to talk of and in the South the rain has eased off but conditions are pretty bleak. [more]

12/06/2009: Shedding the light
Darfield farmer Paul Jarman sheds some light on the different stages of a sheep's life. [more]

12/06/2009: 100 Years of Herd Testing
Sleeping in a different bed nearly every night, eating weetbix for dinner and driving a horse and gig were all part of the early Herd Testers lot in New Zealand. A new book celebrates these hardy folk. [more]

12/06/2009: Catch me if you scan
South Island producer Cosmo Kentish-Barnes captures a day in the life of experienced stock scanner Jeff Sewell, who is pregnancy testing a herd of cows on an isolated farm, that borders the Buller River between Murchison and Nelson. [more]

19/06/2009: Regional wrap
Frosts blanket most of the North Island and in the deep south it's been extremely snowy and frosty. [more]

19/06/2009: Gisborne grapes
Tony Gayford's been growing grapes in the Gisborne region for the past 40 years and has seen a few highs and lows in the industry. [more]

19/06/2009: Meat the chairman
Mike Peterson, the Chairman of Meat and Wool New Zealand and his team are at the Hawarden rugby clubrooms in North Canterbury, to gain support from local farmers for the organisation before the upcoming levy referendum in August. [more]

19/06/2009: Detention and prevention
Justin Gregory travels to Matiu/Somes Island in the middle of Wellington harbour with DOC staffers Paulette Wallace and Richard Nestor to explore what remains of the quarantine stations that operated on the Island for more than a century. [more]

26/06/2009: Intro and Guest
Geoff Burton talks about high lamb prices and good bottom lines for King Country sheep and beef farmers. [more]

26/06/2009: Regional Wrap
Rain replaces the icy frosts in the North island while the South Island remains freezing. [more]

26/06/2009: Rogaining
A grueling farm based sport that was developed in Australia and is now growing in popularity in New Zealand. [more]

26/06/2009: My Old Man Said Follow the Cows
June 1 is also called Gypsy day. It marks the end of one dairy season and the start of another. Dairy farmer Mike Swney has to walk his cows 14 kms to a new farm. [more]

03/07/2009: Intro and regional Wrap
The North Island's been wet and in the South Island things go from cold to freezing. [more]

03/07/2009: No kidding
Goat meat is on the menu this week as Cosmo Kentish-Barnes meets goat farmers Tony Gosling and Neil North on a large block of high country land near Clyde in Central Otago. [more]

03/07/2009: Tarata Fishaway
Stephen Mattock's workplace is the scenic Rangitikei river. He's a fishing and river guide and he and his wife Trudi welcome hundreds of guests a year to their remote rural lodge. [more]

10/07/2009: Intro and regional wrap and guest
Farms all over the country are tapping into their banks of supplementary feed. Our guest Ben Allomes is the president of Young Farmers - the organisation's looking for new members. [more]

10/07/2009: Bliss stick kayaks
Some of the world's most fearless kayakers fly through rapids in a Bliss Stick kayak. The boats are made in a woolshed down a lonely road, half an hour's drive from Taihape. [more]

10/07/2009: Freshwater crayfish farming
Ormond Aquaculture is based near the Wairau Valley township in Marlborough. It's here that Cosmo Kentish-Barnes meets up with aqua farmer and environmental award winner Peter Wilhelmus whose organic freshwater crayfish/koura business is starting to make waves. [more]

17/07/2009: Intro and Guest
Professional rabbit hunter Bill Linwood works on several high country stations In Central Otago. [more]

17/07/2009: Regional Wrap
Very low pasture covers on most North Island farms, and down south the Dusky Sound earthquake has got everyone rocking. [more]

17/07/2009: As dry as an apricot
Wayne Ashton is a second-generation apricot grower and the family's Sunbury Park Orchard in Central Otago brand produces New Zealand's most popular homegrown dried apricot. [more]

17/07/2009: Farming, Bush Poetry and Love Entwine
Graeme Williams farms a steep, stunning, erosion prone sheep and beef station on the North Island's East Coast. He farms with only 12 paddocks and has planted 50 thousand trees. He proposed to his wife-to-be after a weeklong courtship. Both are bush poets. [more]

24/07/2009: Intro and regional wrap
Sunshine's needed in the north and in the south. [more]

24/07/2009: The Vicar and the Vines
A weekend hobby and retreat has become a full time business for Peter and May Croft who moved from Wellington to Wairarapa a number of years ago. She's also the local vicar, introducing pinot noir to the alter offering. [more]

24/07/2009: Seeing the light
As well as running a sheep and beef farm Rob and Sally Peter have created a baby wear brand called Isolation that uses the best fleece from their merinos. They've also turned their coastal Marlborough farm into a stunning walkway that encompasses the rather dramatic Cape Campbell lighthouse. [more]

31/07/2009: Intro and guest
Kevin McInnes has just been crowned New Zealand's Young Grower of the Year. [more]

31/07/2009: Regional wrap
Many North Island farms are very short of feed and there's lots of mud on the South Island's west coast. [more]

31/07/2009: Sugar and spice
The Provisions Kitchen Shop in Cromwell, Central Otago has just won a Cuisine Magazine award for one of its chutneys and according to co-owner Pauline Murphy, the kitchen continues to create new culinary delights. [more]

31/07/2009: A fishy business
Jean and Richard Kibblewhite catch fish in the wild waters off Wairarapa and sell it to the people of the district.Kevin McInnes has just been crowned New Zealand's Young Grower of the Year. [more]

07/08/2009: Intro and guest
Animal Health Board's William McCook talks about TB eradication. [more]

07/08/2009: Regional wrap
Three and a half thousand head of cattle sell at Gisborne and in the South farmers are gearing up for a busy spring. [more]

07/08/2009: Blueberry Art Farm
Joe and Maggie Kieninger moved from Germany to New Zealand to live their dream of running a farm and working as artists three years ago. With a lot of hard work they've turned their property into something unique, with blueberries, sheep, alpacas, a gallery and B and B. [more]

07/08/2009: From small beginnings
Maniototo high country sheep farmer and bonspiel curling champion Ken Gillespie is behind the preservation and restoration of the Hayes Engineering Works, that's just down the road from his farm in the Oturehua Valley. The workshop was established by Ernest Hayes in 1895 and out of it came many rural inventions, some of which are still being used today such as the parallel wire strainer. [more]

14/08/2009: Intro, a poem by Joe Bell and Regional Wrap
Intro, a poem by Joe Bell and Regional Wrap. [more]

14/08/2009: Flower power
Theo Van der Put grows freesia and lilies in Wairarapa and business is blooming. [more]

14/08/2009: Ag Science Isn't Sexy After School
Why do only 1% of university graduates have agricultural science degrees when the industries they'll be working with earn the lions share of New Zealand's export dollars. [more]

14/08/2009: The Singing Scientist
Matthew Barnett wrote a song promoting Nutritional Epigenetics for his MacDiarmid Young Scientist of the Year Award entry. He doesn't usually do country and western but the song's agricultural links cry out "go country". [more]

21/08/2009: Intro and guest
The state of the lamb industry with the Meat and Wool Service's Rob Davison. [more]

21/08/2009: Regional wrap
The grass is finally starting to grow in the North Island and in the south, the week ended on a sunny note. [more]

21/08/2009: Kingsmeade Artisan Cheese
Despite the recession, Wairarapa farmers Janet and Miles King have taken the plunge to greatly increase the size of their ewe milk cheese making plant on their farm. [more]

21/08/2009: Cool olive oil
Stephen and Anna Clark make olive oil in Central Otago.. [more]

28/08/2009: Intro and Guest
Roger Barber from Avocado Growers Association and Industry Council looks at the avocado export season which is just starting. [more]

28/08/2009: Regional Wrap
August has been fantastic in the North Island, grass is humming and the South Island has sprung into spring too. [more]

28/08/2009: Wonderful Witloof
Marius Van der Put runs New Zealand's only commercial Witloof operation in Masterton. [more]

28/08/2009: Fabulous Fruit
Ron Becroft is a long-time horticultural leader. He was recently awarded the Bledisloe cup - a magnificent cousin of the rugby cup - for outstanding services to the horticulture industry. [more]

04/09/2009: Doug Edmeades Talks Fertiliser
Trends in fertiliser use as dairy, sheep and beef farmers all put cheque books away. [more]

04/09/2009: Regional Wrap
Grass growth is accelerating rapidly in the North Island while an icy blast stops things short in the South Island. [more]

04/09/2009: Incept Marine
John Booth wanted a change in lifestyle so he moved to Taihape and set up Incept Marine, a company making and exporting inflatable kayaks, rafts and rescue craft. [more]

04/09/2009: The Men from the Maniototo
Naseby is an isolated gold mining and farming town in the heart of the Maniototo region of Central Otago. Cosmo Kentish-Barnes is there to meet local raconteurs Ross McMillian, Des Styles and Laurie Inder at the bar of the Ancient Briton Hotel, where a similar recording was done in 1947 by the peacetime mobile unit of the New Zealand Broadcasting Service. [more]

11/09/2009: Theresa Gattung Talks Wool
The wool industry's in crisis, where to from here? [more]

11/09/2009: Regional wrap
Rain needed in the North Island while the weather's great for lambing in the South. [more]

11/09/2009: African students
Lincoln University agricultural students Gillian Kabwe from Zambia and Ricki Madebele from Botswana talk about their research and life back home. [more]

11/09/2009: Organics for Commercial Gain
Gray Baldwin used to be a fertiliser company CEO. He now runs an award winning organic farm near Putaruru, and says the conversion was solely commercial - to make more money from milk. The farm also has a huge variety of trees for stock food and human consumption. [more]

18/09/2009: Guests
Minister of Agriculture David Carter and Pat O'Sullivan of the Wool Advancement Group on uniting the wool industry and Brent Clothier on virtual water. [more]

18/09/2009: Regional Wrap
In the North Island fruit buds are starting to break and in the South lambing and calving are keeping farmers on their toes. [more]

18/09/2009: Fish out of water
The Novis family has been beef farming at Port Charles on the tip of the Coromandel Peninsula for four generations, but Paua farming and Crayfishing have now become an important part of farms portfolio. [more]

18/09/2009: Inmate organics
The Paparoa Men's Prison near Christchurch runs a commercially successful 35-acre organic market garden that also provides the inmates who work there, with horticultural qualifications. Southern horticultural manager Stuart Whyte is the driving force behind this growing venture. [more]

25/09/2009: Guest
New Zealand Seafood Industry Council Chief Executive Owen Symmans. [more]

25/09/2009: Regional Wrap
In the North Island much needed rains have fallen and in the south wintery temperatures arrived again this week. Meanwhile, the high exchange rate is tempering good moods. [more]

25/09/2009: Sowing the seeds of success
Richard and Karen Kershaw planted over 100 tonnes of onions for seed this year on their Wairarapa farm. It used to be a more conventional livestock operation, but diversification has proved to be a shrewd move as the global demand for onion seed is growing. [more]

25/09/2009: Eat In Season
Rowena Robinson is often heard yelling 'Eat in season!' from her stall at the Tamahere Country market. She grows 40 types of vegetables, 40 types of fruit, and 20 herbs on her small property near Hamilton. [more]

02/10/2009: Guest
Lincoln University ecologist Mike Bowie is running a free biodiversity workshop in Akaroa. [more]

02/10/2009: Regional Wrap
It's been wet around the country this week and quite a few regions are reporting boggy soils and cold August like temperatures. [more]

02/10/2009: Lavender Creek Farm
Amelia Nurse talks to Susi White about Lavender Creek Farm that is this year the overall winner of the Lavender Oil Awards. [more]

02/10/2009: High Country Tenure Review
Large blocks of crown pastoral land in the South Island high country are going into private ownership through the tenure review process. Cosmo Kentish-Barnes finds out how tenure review works, if it's fair and why the government is making some changes to the process. [more]

09/10/2009: Guest
Environmental economist Cath Wallace responds to comments made by Owen Symmans of the New Zealand Seafood Council. [more]

09/10/2009: Regional Wrap
Cold, wet, snowy and gloomy weather's afflicted Central North island farmers and frosts have caused Marlborough grape growers to create a noisey riot with frost protection weapons. [more]

09/10/2009: Conspiring to Curl
Country Life heads to Central Otago to learn about the art of ice curling with sheep farmer and New Zealand team coach Peter Becker. [more]

09/10/2009: Pat Pickin
Pat Pickin's well into her eighth decade and still farming. She runs dairy weaners and has had the same client for 29 years. Colourful childhood memories flow into a varied life farming everything from rabbits to horses, goats and cattle and while her bones carry her forward, she says she'll keep on farming. [more]

16/10/2009: Gidday and Regional Wrap
Parts of the North Island are sodden, and in the south, many farmers are busy sowing crops. [more]

16/10/2009: Jazz Update
ENZA General Manager Snow Hardy says 15 per cent of this year's Jazz export crop had to be dumped. [more]

16/10/2009: The Volunteer Fire Brigades
Thousands of New Zealanders give their time to this worthwhile service - we meet some of the volunteers in Whitianga. [more]

16/10/2009: Tora Walkway
The Tora track crosses the land of three farming families, who provide wonderful food and rustic accommodation to trampers - and better still they carry your pack. [more]

23/10/2009: NZ Trade Commissioner for UK and Ireland
Michelle Templer talks about the British"buy local"campaign and traceability, plus the Australian practise of mulesing, cuts merino wool purchases by Marks and Spencers. [more]

23/10/2009: Regional Wrap
The avocado harvest is in full swing and some miserable conditions in the south has had farmers reaching for their long johns. [more]

23/10/2009: No more whining
North Canterbury's Waipara Valley wine producers have joined forces to promote the regions wine and produce. [more]

23/10/2009: Out of Africa
Wessel Eksteen's farm was seized by Robert Mugabe. He's now built a new life deep in King Country's hilll country. [more]

30/10/2009: Regional Wrap
Sunshine is needed around the entire country. October was generally cold and wet and dreary. [more]

30/10/2009: Agri News
A South Island honey firm is New Zealand's fastest growing company, ice-cream that may help cancer sufferers, and there's a shortage of young people coming into the fishing industry. [more]

30/10/2009: Docking
t's docking time on Lyn and Alex Neeson's remote property. They bought the farm 22 years ago because it was one of the cheapest on the market. [more]

30/10/2009: The Station Master
Earnscleugh is a vast sheep farming station in Central Otago that's been plagued by drought and rabbit infestation for may years, but this hasn't stopped hard working farmers Alistair and Judith Campbell from turning the once abandoned property into a profitable farming operation. [more]

06/11/2009: Regional Wrap
Sunshine is needed around the entire country. October was generally cold and wet and dreary. [more]

06/11/2009: Intro and guest
Mike Peterson, the chairman of Meat and Wool New Zealand talks about the budgets cuts that are being made after farmers voted to cease funding the wool levy [more]

06/11/2009: Out for a duck
Mid-Canterbury fowl breeder and judge Roger McCormick has had an interesting collection of rare breed ducks. [more]

06/11/2009: Horsing Around
Each year Gisborne hosts a large horse sale. It's a decades old event where broken and unbroken horses are sold. Buyers arrive from all over the North Island because"Gissy"horses are seen as sound, unflappable and good all rounders... but it's a case of buyer beware. [more]

13/11/2009: Horticulture New Zealand
President Andrew Fenton says the supermarket supply chain needs more transperancy to help see where the costs are in the system. [more]

13/11/2009: Regional Wrap
It's still cool and changeable in many areas. There's demand for stock as farmers who have destocked, now have a bit more grass. [more]

13/11/2009: Tane's Tree Trust Turns Ten
Tane's Tree Trust, which aims to boost native tree plantings on farms is turning ten. One member, Roger MacGibbon, says native trees can be grown for biodiversity and income but more research is needed, so it's disappointing funding has recently gone from one big trial. [more]

13/11/2009: Arapawa asylum
There are only about 300 Arapawa goats worldwide and a quarter of these live on David Hughes and Patsy Gibson's"Tutukinoa"farm that's perched on the steep rocky hills high above Lyttelton. They also keep Arapawa pigs that are close to extinction, as well as having a flock of Arapawa sheep. [more]

20/11/2009: Intro and Guest
Our guest this week is Dianne Bardsley, author of In the Paddock and on the Run. [more]

20/11/2009: Regional Wrap
Welcome rain in the North Island but it's still cold, while the South Island is drying out in many places. [more]

20/11/2009: Fabulous Fabric
An AgResearch Textile Science and Technology Apparel team, led by Dr Surinder Tandon has developed a range of lightweight, itch free wool knitted fabrics that are designed to be used for luxury wool sheeting and bedware. [more]

20/11/2009: Docking Days
Karen McLeay returns to a family farm in Waikato to help dock. She recalls letters her father wrote back home when he was away in WW2, thinking about the farm and jobs he used to help do. [more]

27/11/2009: Intro and Guest
Waikato kiwifruit and apple grower Richard Glenn supports the single-desk kiwifruit marketer Zespri. [more]

27/11/2009: Regional Wrap
It's been windy and fine across most of the country. [more]

27/11/2009: The Wool Company
This rural Rangitikei business sells New Zealand woollen garments and knitting yarn to the world. Gordon and Margot Riach. [more]

27/11/2009: Waihi Bush
Geraldine farmer David Musgrove has been farming organically at Waihi Bush for more than 20 years and every summer the farm hosts a grassroots music festival. David also produces Waihi Bush Flax oil and the Omega-3 rich oil can now be found throughout New Zealand and as far afield as Czechoslovakia. [more]

04/12/2009: Regional Wrap
Very welcome rain has fallen around all of the North Island, except Northland. In the South things are starting to warm up again. [more]

04/12/2009: All creatures great and small
Paul Williams is Banks Peninsula's sole vet and today he's visiting Mark Shadbolt's Farm in Barry's Bay to prepare some cows for artificial insemination. [more]

04/12/2009: Kiwi Organics
Mike and Bridget Parker are the largest organic maize growers in the country. They've built their own mill, supplying 25 companies with maize based ingredients. They export popcorn to Australia, and they're hoping to sell polenta to the Italians. [more]

11/12/2009: Introduction and guest
Industrial hemp campaigner Mack McIntosh.Industrial hemp campaigner Mack McIntosh. [more]

11/12/2009: Regional wrap
Late silage is being made in the North Island and humid conditions smother the South Island. [more]

11/12/2009: Isaac Wildlife Trust
The Isaac Wildlife trust in Canterbury owns and runs Peacock Springs, an idyllic and safe environment for endangered New Zealand wildlife. This privately funded park covers a huge area of quarried land on the outskirts of Christchurch. Its manager Anne Richardson takes Country life producer Cosmo Kentish -Barnes on a tour of this hidden sanctuary. [more]

18/12/2009: Intro and Guest
Anthea Dunning has a home based business selling wooden cake boxes made from kahikatea trees. They're ideal for Christmas cakes and last for generations. [more]

18/12/2009: Regional Wrap
The Far North is very dry and needs rain while most other North Island areas are going into mid summer with good soil moisture levels. South Island high country farmers haven't had a strong financial year with low wool returns and lambs $20/head down on last year. [more]

18/12/2009: The big Cheese
Choosing cheese for Christmas with Canterbury Cheesemonger Martin Aspinwall. [more]

18/12/2009: Biddy Fraser-Davies
Amelia Nurse visits Eketahuna to ask the some of the most pressing questions of our time: How clever are cattle, does cheese from single cows taste better and where do lady farmers find late blooming love? Biddy Fraser-Davies holds the answers. [more]

25/12/2009: Country Life for 25 December 2009
A selection of highlights from 2009 - Some of the world's most fearless kayakers fly through rapids in a Bliss Stick kayak. The boats are made in a woolshed down a lonely road, half an hour's drive from Taihape. Canterbury wool classer and sheep racing trainer David Cone drills his fastest sheep into shape in a paddock outside Christchurch. Graeme Williams farms a steep, stunning, erosion prone sheep and beef station on the North Island's East Coast. He farms with only 12 paddocks and has planted 50 thousand trees. He proposed to his wife-to-be after a weeklong courtship. Both are bush poets. [more]

01/01/2010: Country Life for 1 January 2010
A selection of highlights from 2009 - Theo and Joselyn Marama grow organic olives, lavender, kumara and other crops near Gisborne. With a ready laugh and a generous spirit, they live life to the full. Cosmo Kentish-Barnes visits artist Sally Burton in her studio on the Waimea plains near Nelson to talk about her latest body of work entitled White Gold - The Business of Milk, that was recently exhibited at Nelson's Suter Art Gallery. Sally has created a dream dairy herd of cows that are based on actual records from the 150-year-old dairy farm that surrounds her rural studio. [more]

08/01/2010: Country Life for 8 January 2010
A selection of highlights from 2009 - Stephen Mattock's workplace is the scenic Rangitikei river. He's a fishing and river guide and he and his wife Trudi welcome hundreds of guests a year to their remote rural lodge. Blacksmith artist Peter Lazlo and his artist wife Rosie arrived in New Zealand a couple of years ago after selling their small farm in eastern France. They've settled on a block of native bush overlooking the ocean on the West Coast and they plan to turn it into an eco-friendly centre for fellow artists. [more]

15/01/2010: Country Life for 15 January 2010
A selection of highlights from 2009 - The Chen family have spent 13 years nurturing tea bushes in Waikato. They're hoping to tap into the lucrative market for premium oolong tea - a product that sells for thousands of dollars a kilogram. Naseby is an isolated gold mining and farming town in the heart of the Maniatoto region of Central Otago. Cosmo Kentish-Barnes is there to meet local raconteurs Ross McMillian, Des Styles and Laurie Inder at the bar of the Ancient Briton Hotel, where a similar recording was done in 1947 by the peacetime mobile unit of the New Zealand Broadcasting Service. [more]

22/01/2010: Country Life for 22 January 2010
A selection of highlights from 2009 - Pat Pickin's well into her eighth decade and still farming. She runs dairy weaners and has had the same client for 29 years. Colourful childhood memories flow into a varied life farming everything from rabbits to horses, goats and cattle and while her bones carry her forward, she says she'll keep on farming. The Tora track crosses the land of three farming families, who provide wonderful food and rustic accomodation to trampers - and better still they carry your pack. [more]

29/01/2010: Intro and Guest
Helen Moodie describes conditions in Northland. [more]

29/01/2010: Regional Wrap
Northland is in drought but the rest of the North Island has had good rain. [more]

29/01/2010: Kiwifruit Puree
Te Puna company Kiwifruitz manufactures and exports kiwifruit puree. Grant Jeffrey. [more]

29/01/2010: The smaller the better
Miniature animal breeder Karen Earl has an eclectic mix of short-legged animals on her lifestyle block just south of Canterbury and believes that there are no great things, only small things with great love. [more]

05/02/2010: Intro and Guest
Farmer and Journalist Alan Emerson on the cubicle farming debate. [more]

05/02/2010: Regional Wrap
Northland is in drought but the rest of the North Island has had good rain. It's a bit dry on the South Island's west coast. [more]

05/02/2010: A year on
A year ago this weekend, bushfires roared across Victoria in Australia. Landowners are still trying to rebuild their lives. [more]

12/02/2010: Sheep Heaven - 1. Meat the Sheep
Buying sheep for a small block. How many do you need, where should the yards go, what breed is best and where do you buy them. [more]

12/02/2010: Intro and Regional Wrap
The Gisborne region's been sweltering this week and in the South Island a bit of moisture would put a smile on the dial of most country folk. [more]

12/02/2010: Half an acre of history
Cosmo Kentish-Barnes meets farmer and compulsive collector Richard Spark, who over 35 years has filled the Northbrook Museum near Rangiora with memorabilia, materials and technology from yesteryear. The museum started with a milk bottle collection housed in an old milking shed, but has since grown into half an acre of attached buildings that are overflowing with local history. [more]

19/02/2010: Intro and Guest
OM Financial carbon trader Nigel Brunel. [more]

19/02/2010: Regional Wrap
Around the country in the North the sweetcorn harvest's in full swing and in the South Island pip fruit picking has started... [more]

19/02/2010: Happy Hens
Peter McLeod produces free range and Bio-Gro certified organic meat chickens on the families Westwood Organic farm in Canterbury. [more]

19/02/2010: Waipaoa Station Farm Cadet Training
The station runs a two year land based agricultural training programme for young people who'd like to work in agriculture. Five cadets are taken in annually. [more]

26/02/2010: Intro and Guest
Ingrid Hofma from Le Fresh talks about the summerfruit exporting season. [more]

26/02/2010: Regional Wrap
Northland's still parched, the apple harvest's steaming along, grapes are being picked in Gisborne and Auckland, and in the South Island. [more]

26/02/2010: Wholly Cow
Tom Andrews sells meat from his own farm at farmers' markets. [more]

26/02/2010: Gloriavale Christian Community
The community's become one of the largest contributors to the West Coast economy and is based on a 1700-hectare inland farm where nearly 500 people live in relative seclusion. [more]

05/03/2010: Intro and Guest
The Waipara Valley Wine and Food Festival with festival chairman Richard Murchison. [more]

05/03/2010: Regional Wrap
Autumn has arrived in the North Island and parts of Otago are very dry. [more]

05/03/2010: Pinot Noir Judge
Biodynamic proponent Max Allen at the Pinot Noir conference. [more]

05/03/2010: Rhododendron Nursery
Louise and Matthew Glubb run The Elms Rhododendron Gardens and Nursery near Christchurch. The gardens have many examples of hard to find specimens. [more]

05/03/2010: Sheep Heaven - 2. Baaad Medicine
The sheep are named on Susan Murray's lifestyle block and a vet talks about fobbing off footrot, flystrike and facial eczema. [more]

12/03/2010: Intro and Regional Wrap
Far North farmer Ian Walker talks about conditions on his farm. And, at the top of the South Island it's as dry as-a-bone but further south rain has brought with it a winter chill. [more]

12/03/2010: Charged up
Christchurch based researcher Nick Haslett is investigating how yeast placed in a microbial fuel cell can break down organic waste in water and at the same time generate electricity; a process that could prove useful on farms. [more]

12/03/2010: Living Between the Lines - Sallie's Memories (part one)
Episode one of a new 8-part series about rural life seen through the eyes of a young farmers daughter from Murchison in the 1930's, based on Sara Newman's book of the same name. Read by Yvonne Martin and produced by Cosmo Kentish-Barnes. The music is from the Radio New Zealand Sound Archives recorded by the peacetime mobile unit of the New Zealand Broadcasting Service. [more]

12/03/2010: Sheep and scones - A New Zealand farm tour
Cosmo Kentish-Barnes joins a group of cruise ship tourists who embark in Akaroa to do the Paua Bay Farm Tour run by sheep farmer's Murray and Sue Johns. [more]

19/03/2010: Intro and Regional Wrap
Drought still gripping Northland while other previously okay regions have dried dramatically. Central Otago's desperate for rain, some farmers are depressed. Snow's fallen on ranges. [more]

19/03/2010: Sheep Heaven - 3. Science of the Lambs
Producing good lambs all comes down to ram breeding and selection. March is the time rams need to go out with the ewes in the North Island so Sheep Heaven goes to Bill and Sue Garland's property to select a nice border leicester ram. William the ram is taken home and starts doing the business. [more]

19/03/2010: Living Between the Lines - Sallie's Memories (part two)
Episode two of a new 8-part series about rural life seen through the eyes of a young farmer's daughter from Murchison in the 1930's, based on Sara Newman's book of the same name. Read by Yvonne Martin and produced by Cosmo Kentish-Barnes. The music is from the Radio New Zealand Sound Archives recorded by the peacetime mobile unit of the New Zealand Broadcasting Service. [more]

19/03/2010: Artificial Pollination
Bay of Plenty company Pollen Plus is the largest producer of pollen in the world. Each November one hundred tonnes of male kiwfruit flowers are picked so the pollen can be extracted and sold. Steve Saunders and Dr Mark Goodwin. [more]

26/03/2010: Intro and Regional Wrap
The Gisborne region's had great weather for the last of the sweetcorn and squash harvests, while in the South Island, the west coast is soaking up most of the moisture. [more]

26/03/2010: Creme de Cassis
Harvesting has finished for Omihi Creek Cassis Company owners Mark and Louise Eder, who grow blackcurrants on their farm in North Canterbury. [more]

26/03/2010: Living Between the Lines - Sallie's Memories (part three)
Episode three of a new 8-part series about rural life seen through the eyes of a young farmer's daughter from Murchison in the 1930's, based on Sara Newman's book of the same name. Read by Yvonne Martin and produced by Cosmo Kentish-Barnes. The music is from the Radio New Zealand Sound Archives, recorded by the peacetime mobile unit of the New Zealand Broadcasting Service. [more]

26/03/2010: Golden Shears
The Golden Shears has been the feature event on the New Zealand shearing calendar for 50 years. [more]

02/04/2010: Chatham Island's Mayor
The Chatham Island's newly appointed Mayor Alfred Preece, takes Cosmo to the top of his farm in Owenga to see platforms for the huge wind turbines that are being constructed (in France) to ease the Islands' energy crisis. Cosmo also pops in to meet his father, 88 year old Alfred senior, who is one of only five living veterans who fought with 28 Maori Battalion in the Second World War. [more]

02/04/2010: Intro and Regional Wrap
It's still desperately dry in Northland and pretty dry in other North Island areas while in the South Island rams are out and milk production's slowing. [more]

02/04/2010: Young Gun
David Gordon is just 13 and is the youngest person to have won the novice competition at the Golden Shears. [more]

02/04/2010: Sheep Heaven - 4. Makin' Woolly
William the ram has met up with most of the ewes and stirred a childhood memory for Susan Murray. [more]

02/04/2010: Living Between the Lines - Sallie's Memories (part four)
An 8-part series set Murchison in the 1930's about rural life seen through the eyes of a farmer's daughter. Part 4 recounts the day of the 1929 Murchison earthquake from a child's perspective. Based on Sara Newman's book of the same name. Read by Yvonne Martin and produced by Cosmo Kentish-Barnes. The music is from the Radio New Zealand Sound Archives, recorded by the peacetime mobile unit of the New Zealand Broadcasting Service. [more]

02/04/2010: Ewe Milking on the Central Plateau
The Waituhi Kuratau Maori trust has just completed its first full season milking 1600 ewes once a day through a 80 bale rotary shed. The trust owns its own processing factory and hopes to persuade neighbouring farmers to join the fledging sheep milk industry. [more]

03/04/2010: Intro and Guest
Author and farmer Michael Trotter talks about his book 'Rare Breeds of Heritage Livestock in New Zealand'. [more]

09/04/2010: Intro and Regional Wrap
More of the North Island is declared a drought zone, while in the South Island frosts are tickling many places. [more]

09/04/2010: Pig Poo Powers the Farm
By covering an effluent pond, a Taranaki pig farmer, Steve Lepper, is harnessing the biogas to provide electricity for the farm, and in winter he'll be using the waste hot water to heat the little pigs. [more]

09/04/2010: Living Between the Lines - Sallie's Memories (part five)
An 8-part series set Murchison in the 1930's about rural life seen through the eyes of a farmer's daughter. [more]

09/04/2010: Feedback and Sheep Heaven Update
A ex-pat kiwi writes in from Sweden and in Sheep Heaven Kim, Catherine, Mary, Nicola, Susan, Carla, Carol, Maggie, Eva and Lynne have all met William the ram. [more]

16/04/2010: Intro and Regional Wrap
Virtually all of the North Island desperately needs rain and in the South grape harvesting gets into full swing. [more]

16/04/2010: Omihi School Biodiversity Project
As part of the Greening Waipara Project in North Canterbury, the students at Omihi Primary School are creating a biodiversity trail on the School grounds. [more]

16/04/2010: Living Between the Lines - Sallie's Memories (part six)
Part 6 follows Sallie and her brothers as they embark on fishing and hunting expeditions on the family farm. [more]

16/04/2010: Castlepoint Station
Anders and Emily Crofoot moved from a farm in New York State to Castlepoint Station in 1998. They've embraced rural life here - Anders is the president of Wairarapa Federated Farmers, the president of Grasslands New Zealand and the local fire chief. [more]

23/04/2010: Intro and Wool Comment
Industry observer and former Wool Board spin doctor Don Carson says for wool to survive, wool exporters need to work together promoting wool internationally. [more]

23/04/2010: Regional Wrap
Let it rain. [more]

23/04/2010: The SAITL Laboratory
At the height of the dairy season 25 thousand samples of milk arrive at the Saitl Lab each day for composition and quality tests. [more]

23/04/2010: Living between the Lines - Sallie's Memories (part seven)
An 8-part series set Murchison in the 1930's about rural life seen through the eyes of a farmer's daughter. [more]

23/04/2010: Big Bush Farm
Hard-working Chatham Islander Ranna Tuuta runs a flock of sheep on her windswept farm that lies between Petrie Bay and Te Whanga Lagoon. [more]

30/04/2010: Regional Wrap
In the North and South Islands grape growers and apple growers have had ideal conditions for their harvests. [more]

30/04/2010: The Calling
Expert duck caller Tom Lanauze demonstrates the basic calls a day before the duck-shooting season starts. [more]

30/04/2010: Living Between the Lines - Sallie's Memories (part eight)
The final part of this story that's set in Murchison in the 1930's, about rural life seen through the eyes of a farmer's daughter. Based on Sara Newman's book of the same name. Read by Yvonne Martin and produced by Cosmo Kentish-Barnes. The music is from the Radio New Zealand Sound Archives, recorded by the peacetime mobile unit of the New Zealand Broadcasting Service. [more]

30/04/2010: Graham and Alistair Bryant - Rua Peka Peka Stud
The Perendale Sheep Society is celebrating its 50th birthday. In the 1940's and 50's farmers were crossing Romneys and Cheviots to get a strong, robust breed which would help break in new land. One of those interbreeding the sheep early on, was Graham Bryant, who also helped coin the name, Perendale. These days three of the founding families of the society are still running Perendale studs. [more]

07/05/2010: Mission Station - The end of the road
Mission Station is on the North Eastern tip of the Chatham Islands and is home to Jim and Sally Muirson, who run sheep and beef on the windswept Peninsula. Jim, who came to the Chatham's in the 1960's from Banks Peninsula, takes Cosmo Kentish-Barnes on a tiki tour of this historic farm that has one of New Zealand's earliest cemeteries, the remains of an American whaling settlement, a large seal colony and the wreck of a World War 2 Sunderland flying boat that crash-landed in Te Whanga lagoon in 1959. [more]

07/05/2010: Intro and Regional Wrap
In the increasingly dry North Island the kiwifruit harvest is progressing well and in the South most dairy herds are onto once a day milking as the season comes to an end. [more]

07/05/2010: Dairy Mood and Book Winner
Andrew McRae checks out the mood of dairy farmers at a Dairy NZ forum this week. Rare Breeds Book winner Carol McKeever. [more]

07/05/2010: Sister Sue: Whanganui Traders market
Sister Sue lives in Jerusalem and sells preserves made from local produce, at the Whanganui Traders market. [more]

14/05/2010: Intro and Guest
Event chairman of the 2010 New Zealand Dairy Industry Awards, Matthew Richards. [more]

14/05/2010: Regional Wrap
In the North Island the mandarin harvest is underway and in the South, some rain has brought hope to farmers in Marlborough. [more]

14/05/2010: Angel Horses
Melissa Miles runs a small horse sanctuary on the outskirts of Christchurch that cares for unloved horses. [more]

14/05/2010: The Wee Red Barn
Dot and Alan Bissett learned how to grow berry fruit in Scotland and now have their own berry patch just out of Masterton. [more]

21/05/2010: Intro and Regional Wrap
Most places have had a good dose of rain this week, and temperatures are even conducive to pasture growth in many areas. [more]

21/05/2010: Sheep Heaven - 5. Yard Opening
Dignitories gather at the property where Kim, Kathryn, Carol, Carla, Eva, Susan, Maggie, Nicola, Mary and Lynn live, to formally open the yards and talk about the science of sheep pregnancy. [more]

21/05/2010: One size doesn't fit all
Gary George along with wife Karen, runs the White Horse Hotel in the Central Otago settlement of Becks. Along with keeping duckshooters and rail trailers happy, they've built up quite a collection of scales - everything from the classic Plunket baby weigher to the Daytona meat machine. [more]

21/05/2010: Dalai Llama's
Anne Thompson runs The Watford Grange Llama Park near Templeton in Canterbury, which is home to a herd of over one hundred Llama and is open to the public who are encouraged to mingle with these inquisitive Camilids. [more]

28/05/2010: Mr Fix It
George Hough has been the resident handyman and undertaker on the Chatham Islands for over 50 years. [more]

28/05/2010: Intro and Guest
The New Zealand Century Farm and Station Awards chairperson Symon Howard. [more]

28/05/2010: Regional Wrap
Rain has held up the last of the kiwfruit harvest and winter's hit with a vengeance in the South Island. [more]

28/05/2010: Creative Fibre
Fancy fleeces, flax, felt and feathers are all in the spot light at the National Creative Fibre Festival held recently in Whangarei. Participants all comment about the increasing interest from young people in creative crafts. [more]

04/06/2010: Intro and Regional Wrap
There's been plenty of rain in the North Island and Canterbury is wet under foot too. [more]

04/06/2010: Latitude 59 degrees North
Gwenyth Wilson Rudstrom lives in Sweden where at this time of year the ice has finally melted, the birds are flocking back to the lakes, and the sun hardly sets. [more]

04/06/2010: Dowdeswell Delphiniums
New Zealand's largest Delphinium growers, Terry and Janice Dowdeswell have major international clients, and are world renowned for breeding superb new varieties. Dowdeswell Delphiniums are the only delphiniums on display in Canada's Butchart Gardens. [more]

04/06/2010: She's a good bitch
The Tai Tapu Sheep Dog Trials are held up the Kaituna Valley on Banks Peninsula in Canterbury. This is the last round before the National finals so vital points are up for grabs. Cosmo Kentish-Barnes meets some competitors on the course and finds out about the dogs and the rules of this sport, where age is of no real consequence. [more]

11/06/2010: Intro and Guest
Mt Hutt Helicopter pilot Paul Cornelius is on a gorse control mission on the Chatham Islands. [more]

11/06/2010: Regional Wrap
The whole of the North Island's received plenty of rain in the past week, and snow's on the ranges. In the South Island .... [more]

11/06/2010: Tomato grower
Peter Mundy and brother Tim run a huge tomato growing operation in the Horotane Valley near Christchurch. [more]

11/06/2010: Te Whangai Trust
Adrienne and Gary Dalton have set up a native plant nursery on their dairy farm so they can train and employ people who would otherwise be on a benefit. The trainees are taught life-skills and work skills and in the past three years 62 people have left the nursery for jobs in the community. The Daltons are hoping their programme will be rolled out across the country. [more]

18/06/2010: Intro and Regional Wrap
Farmers in the North and South Islands have swung into winter mode. [more]

18/06/2010: Latitude 59 degrees North
William Harcus farms Aberdeen Angus cattle on Orkney. [more]

18/06/2010: Fieldays Freebies
Susan Murray and Carol Stiles hunt out free samples and free advice at the National Agricultural Fieldays near Hamilton. [more]

25/06/2010: Captain Clark
Kevin Clark owns the tiny settlement of Port Hutt on the northwestern tip of the Chatham Islands where he runs a commercial fishing business. The quiet bay contains several wrecks, one of which Kevin has turned into an aquarium and art gallery. [more]

25/06/2010: Intro and Regional Wrap
There's been plenty of rain in the North Island and Canterbury is wet under foot too. [more]

25/06/2010: Bristol Plants and Seeds
Wanganui's Joy Bristol grows flower and vegetable seedlings, and seeds. She says interest has picked up hugely from home gardeners in the past year. She also grows heritage tomatoes that are tested for cancer fighting properties. [more]

25/06/2010: Sheep Heaven - 6. Counting Your Lambs
Sheep scanner Karl Williams tells Country Life the alarming news about possible lamb numbers come August. They discuss why scanning helps ewe management. [more]

02/07/2010: Intro and Regional Wrap
Things are still pretty wet around much of the country but the sun is finally showing through. [more]

02/07/2010: Latitude 59
Frank Sokoloski is a farmer from Fort Vermillion in Alberta, Canada where the winters are long and cold and the cattle are resilient. [more]

02/07/2010: The Bountiful Benefields
Gerald and Catherine Benefield's orchard is on land that's been in the family for one hundred years. The beurre clairgeau pear they grow can be traced back to the early 1800's and the Benefield name to the Doomesday Book of 1085. It means 'dweller by the bean field' so horticulture must be in the blood. [more]

02/07/2010: Nitrogen management
NIWA atmospheric scientist Dr Andrew McMillan is testing the effectiveness of nitrous oxide inhibitor dicyandiamide (DCD), on Craige MacKenzie's dairy farm in Methven. If it works on farms, there will be less nitrate leaching, increased pasture utilisation, and reduced greenhouse gas emissions. [more]

09/07/2010: Cherie Tuck
Chatham Islands artist Cherie Tuck and her fisherman father Digby. [more]

09/07/2010: Intro and Regional Wrap
A drier week in the North Island while the South Island hosted the Bonspiel. [more]

09/07/2010: Feedback about Latitude 59
Evan Listoe sends greetings from Lat N 59 degrees 33'38". [more]

09/07/2010: De la Terre Winery
Tony Prichard suspects he has the smallest winery in Hawkes Bay. He not only makes the wine, but built the winery himself, made the lead-light windows and crafted all the furniture. [more]

09/07/2010: Touchwood Books
Peter and Diane Arthur's Touchwood Books are over a cattle stop, on a farm about half an hour's drive from Hastings on the road to Taihape. [more]

16/07/2010: Intro and Regional Wrap
Frosts crackled pastures in many parts of New Zealand, and in some spots, rain would now be welcome. [more]

16/07/2010: Latitude 59 Guest
Mike Radon, Sock-eye Salmon fisherman on the Bering Sea, Alaska. [more]

16/07/2010: Epicurean Supplies
Clyde Potter grows a vast array of organic herbs, vegetables and salad ingredients on his Hawkes Bay property. [more]

16/07/2010: The Beatties of Banks Peninsula
Roger and Nicki Beattie have a large organic sheep and beef operation and a growing kelp harvesting business. They also have several Weka reserves at their home in Tai Tapu, and one day hope to farm these tasty, flightless birds for meat [more]

23/07/2010: Intro and Regional Wrap
It's warmed up in the North Island and is wet in parts of the South Island that don't really need it. [more]

23/07/2010: Sheep Heaven - 7. Baaabies
Resident vet Caroline Hamilton talks about caring for just-born lambs: warm baths, warm colostrum and helping slow-to-lamb ewes, glucose supplements and mothering on twins. [more]

23/07/2010: Collyer House
Neroli Nolan is a fourth generation West Coaster and has come home to run Collyer House, a beachside Bed and amp; Breakfast in Okuru near Haast. [more]

23/07/2010: Arapawa Island Paua Farmers and A Paua Diver
Antonia Radon starts her farming day at 5am. She and her husband Mike have set up a paua farm, they also run cattle and home school their three children. Commercial paua diver David Baker buys juvenile paua from the Radons to put back into the wild. [more]

30/07/2010: Intro and Regional Wrap
It's reasonably mild in the North Island, but still generally very wet underfoot and in the South Island there's a hint of early spring appearing on the horizon. [more]

30/07/2010: Sheep Heaven - 8. Shorn
Gun shearer Edsel Forde removes the fleece from the 10 ewes. His business gets busier each year but he still sneeks time shearing in Sardinia. Over there he reckons he works for five hours a day, and eats and drinks for six. [more]

30/07/2010: Jackson Bay
Jim Davidson is one of the last full time fishing operators based at Jackson Bay in Southern Westland. Jim or 'Jimbo' as he's known locally runs a Tuna and Crayfish boat that's crewed by members of his family and he wouldn't choose to be anywhere else in the world. [more]

06/08/2010: Intro and Regional Wrap
Some eastern regions are water logged, and in the South Island calves are appearing. [more]

06/08/2010: Lattitude 59 degrees north
Lauri Jalonen lives in rural Estonia. Much of the countryside is covered in forests, and furniture and log cabins are exported. [more]

06/08/2010: Free range and fabulous
From their Ruatapu lifestyle block Norma and Mervyn Nicolle believe they produce the tastiest free range eggs on the West Coast. [more]

06/08/2010: It Must be Wattie's
In 1934 Jimmy Wattie noticed fruit going to waste on the ground - so he put some in a can and Wattie's was born. This year Wattie's notched up its 75th harvest. [more]

13/08/2010: Intro and Regional Wrap
Calving's keeping dairy farmers busy and where lambing has started, survival's been good. [more]

13/08/2010: Sheep Heaven - 9. Sell the Wool
Susan Murray's off to sell the wool from her ten sheep. [more]

13/08/2010: St Andrew's Limes
Ant Williams grows limes in frosty Hawkes Bay. He makes a range of lime-based products he sells at the Hawkes Bay farmers market and in specialty food stores around the country. [more]

13/08/2010: Dam Water
The Hurunui Water Project has plans for a 75-metre high dam across the south branch of the Hurunui River. Some North Canterbury farmers wholeheartedly support the idea, but others in the community are strongly opposed to the scheme. [more]

20/08/2010: Intro and Regional Wrap
Animals, farmers and pasture in the North Island would like to see the sun, many South Island farmers were lucky enough to spot it this week. [more]

20/08/2010: Sheep Heaven - 10. Farming Triplets
Sheep farmers need to find a way of increasing their lambing percentages to stay in business, however introducing high fertility breeds comes with management issues. About a third of Edward Dinger's flock of 300 has been having triplets every year. It's a "make work for yourself" option he says. [more]

20/08/2010: Gibbston Valley Wines
Christopher Keys is the chief winemaker at Gibbston Valley Wines in Central Otago and he believes 2010 is going to be a great vintage. [more]

20/08/2010: Waipapa 9 Trust - Ahuwhenua Cup Winner
The trust farms 6500 hectares just north of Lake Taupo. This year its three dairy units took out the prestigious Ahuwhenua Cup which recognises excellence in Maori farming. Dawson Haa, Tony Rotarangi and Craig Jackson. [more]

27/08/2010: Intro and Regional Wrap
It's been extremely wet nearly everywhere in the North Island, but the East Coast of the South Island has spotted the sun. [more]

27/08/2010: Sheep Heaven - 11. The Vet Arrives
Our lifestyle block at Susan Murray's place now has nine ewes (one died) and 18 lambs. However it's not all been plain sailing. The vet was called on Tuesday. [more]

27/08/2010: Preserving for Posterity
The QE 2 Trust lets landowners permanently protect special features on their land. Karen McLeay meets fencer Winston Flemming and QE 2 rep Maggie Bayfield to find out what she needs to do to protect her small patch of Mamaku bush. [more]

27/08/2010: Lord of the Stones
Pounamu carver, musician and endurance sportsman Steve Maitland carves out a humble yet satisfying existence in Ross, a small gold-mining community on the West Coast. [more]

03/09/2010: Intro and Pesticides in Food
Dr Meriel Watts of the Pesticide Action Network talks about The New Zealand Food Safety Authority's latest pesticide residue results. [more]

03/09/2010: Regional Wrap
It's still wet all over the country and everyone wants sunshine. At least product prices appear to be improving. [more]

03/09/2010: Possum Power
Possum trapper and fur trader Brian Adams also runs a successful tourist shop in Haast on the West Coast. [more]

03/09/2010: Latitude 20 Degrees South
George Scott is manager of Lake Nash station in Australia's Northern Territory. He flies his own plane to regular get-togethers in Darwin, it takes five and a half hours each way and if he has to go to a meeting in Canberra, it takes five days - door to door! [more]

03/09/2010: Waitakaruru Sculpture Park
John Wakeling has turned a derelict quarry in the Waikato countryside into an arboretum and sculpture park. [more]

10/09/2010: Intro and Regional Wrap
Rain rain go away... well for a short while anyway. [more]

10/09/2010: Pheasants
Bridgette Karetai and Jeff Niblett are vets, and on their rural property at Sherenden in Hawkes Bay they raise tens of thousands of pheasants each year. The birds are mainly bred to be released on to shooting preserves. [more]

17/09/2010: Intro and Regional Wrap
There's still no let-up from the rain and lambs are dying in the wet weather. [more]

17/09/2010: Stop the Drop!
West Coast dairy farmer Stu Davidson believes the 1080 poisoning programme to combat bovine tuberculosis is doing more harm than good in South Westland. [more]

17/09/2010: From Slaughterer to Saviour
Every winter, for four weeks, former commercial whalers now work with the Conservation Department to survey whale numbers in the Cook Strait. They hope their findings will help support New Zealand's anti whaling stance. From dawn 'til dusk they sit in a wee hut high above the entrance to the Tory Channel, waiting to spy a mighty humpback, and call"there she blows". [more]

24/09/2010: Regional Wrap and Southland Suffers
There is no redeeming feature when it comes to the weather this week. Southland farmers are struggling with dead lambs and ewes and the financial toll will be huge. [more]

24/09/2010: Sheep Heaven - 12. Autopsy
Just before lambing, one seemingly healthy ewe at Sheep Heaven was found with four feet in the air. An autopsy was performed. [more]

01/10/2010: Gidday and Guest
Federated Farmers president and Southland farmer Don Nicolson. [more]

01/10/2010: Regional Wrap
Parts of the North Island even had a couple of rain free days this week and in the South, some places are even asking for showers. [more]

01/10/2010: Sheep Heaven - 13. Docking
There are a good number of lambs ready for the rubber ring. [more]

01/10/2010: The Delicious Brussels Sprout
Bruce and Steph Rollinson are trying to lift the profile of the Brussels Sprout. [more]

01/10/2010: New Life for Beck's Old White Horse Hotel
Mike Gourley stops off at Becks in Central Otago to find out what's new at one of New Zealand's oldest hotels. [more]

08/10/2010: A Grand Old Cow
Te Awamutu dairy farmer Gordon Kirkham tells of how Cow number 140, or Grandma, has given birth to her 20th calf. [more]

08/10/2010: Regional Wrap
The sun is shining over the North Island and in the South the sun and tractors are working hard. [more]

08/10/2010: Sticky fingers
Justin Gregory takes a tour of a family owned jam factory run by Kate and Tim Gibbs in Te Horo, North of Otaki. [more]

08/10/2010: Tb or not Tb - this is the question
Cosmo Kentish-Barnes goes to Harihari on the West Coast to meet farmers Frank and Anne Simpson, who have recently found out that a large proportion of their dairy herd has contracted Bovine Tuberculosis. [more]

15/10/2010: Guest
AgResearch scientist Dr Bryce Buddle and his team have received a large grant to develop a new vaccine for Bovine Tuberculosis. [more]

15/10/2010: Regional Wrap
Flooding in Gisborne and in the South Island, some fine weather has helped farmers and fruit growers get back on track. [more]

15/10/2010: The Bard of the Paddoc
Retired Canterbury farmer Colin Patterson recites his poem, Different stokes for different folks. [more]

15/10/2010: Oh Deer
John Douglas operates a successful paddock-to-plate venison operation from his deer farm in North Canterbury. [more]

15/10/2010: Sherrington Grange
Lisa and Julie Harper run cheese making courses, host guests and run a 180 hectare farm on the edge of Mahau Sound, an hour from Picton. Lisa leant cheese making from her mother and grandmother, with some recipes hundreds of years old. She also outlines how to make ricotta at home in twenty minutes. [more]

22/10/2010: Sale yards
Lambs are fetching up to $150 at present which is pleasing for farmers, but all agree that level needs to remain for farming to be viable, and some don't think it will. [more]

22/10/2010: Infused with Nature
When Pauline Stuart was nearly 50 she decided to leave her job in town and set up a business on her Waipa farm growing calendula flowers to use in ointments, soaps and lip balms. Her dairy farming husband is a willing guinea pig for many of the products [more]

22/10/2010: Where a river meets the sea
Barry Wyber is a retired fisherman who lives at an isolated bay near Haast in South Westland. This salt-of-the-earth man now spends his days restoring a collection of Indian motorbikes, old American cars and a Model A Ford in a shed at this hard to find property. [more]

22/10/2010: Intro and wrap
When Pauline Stuart was nearly 50 she decided to leave her job in town and set up a business on her Waipa farm growing calendula flowers to use in ointments, soaps and lip balms. Her dairy farming husband is a willing guinea pig for many of the products [more]

29/10/2010: Intro and Regional Wrap
Sunshine has graced the North Island this week so pasture covers are at last increasing, while in the South milk production is reaching its seasonal peak. [more]

29/10/2010: Salmon Farm and Cafe
Graeme and Brenda Monk run a Salmon Farm and Cafe near Lake Paringa on the West Coast, that's become a popular stop off for tourist coaches traveling from Fox Glacier to Wanaka. [more]

29/10/2010: Pio Pio School Calf Club Day
Lambs, goats, calves, horses and a pig were entered in Pio Pio Primary's calf club day this year. The event has been a highlight on the school calendar every year since 1933. [more]

05/11/2010: Chatham Island Farming
Third generation farmers Robert and Jan Holmes run sheep and cows on their farm near Waitangi on the Chatham Islands [more]

05/11/2010: Intro and guest
Dr Neil Whitehead is studying animal behaviour prior to earthquakes. [more]

05/11/2010: Regional Wrap
Rain has been welcomed across parts of the North Island and crops are sown in the South. [more]

05/11/2010: Majestic Theatre
Taihape's Majestic Theatre has been saved from demolition. [more]

05/11/2010: Tales from Okuru
Betty Eggling, who was born in 1920 in Ross, gives a vivid account of her life on the West Coast. [more]

12/11/2010: Intro and Guest
Doug Avery and his family are the South Island Farmers of the Year. [more]

12/11/2010: Regional Wrap
Kiwifruit growers in Bay of Plenty, and elsewhere, are on tender hooks, while farms in the top of the South Island are desperate for rain. [more]

12/11/2010: Gisborne A and P Show
One of the oldest shows in the country where crochet tea cosies and baking still get a look in, and show goers keenly ballot for a car park around the main equestrian arena so they can then proceed to host friends as they pass by. Beer, brandy and bacon and egg pies rule supreme. [more]

19/11/2010: Heilala Vanilla: flavour from Tonga via Tauranga
A Tauranga based company grows a small crop of vanilla in its geothermal plastic house, but sources all its commercial vanilla from an isolated Tongan island. Heilala Vanilla won gold at the recent New Zealand Food Awards. Jennifer and Garth Boggiss are the New Zealand connection. [more]

19/11/2010: Intro and guest
Terry Harpe of the"Ossie James DC 3 Conservation Trust". [more]

19/11/2010: Regional Wrap
The North Island is desperate for rain and kiwifruit growers are highly anxious with more orchards testing positive to the PSA disease, while in the South Island milk production reaches its peak. [more]

19/11/2010: Middle Rock
Bruce and Lyn Nell run 7000 Corriedale's on their scenic high country Canterbury station with the help of daughter Charlotte, who has turned her back on a successful banking career in order to learn the dark art of sheep farming at Middle Rock. [more]

26/11/2010: Intro and guest
Westland Milk Products Chief Executive Rod Quin. [more]

26/11/2010: Regional Wrap
Kumara growers are desperate for rain and in the south all the forks are out for haymaking. [more]

26/11/2010: Te Manawa
The"Te Manawa"eco village near Motueka is home to Australian Natalie Pollock, who with her husband and children lived in a yurt in the bush until their house was built. [more]

26/11/2010: Canine Control
Former shepherd Anna Holland trains people to train dogs. [more]

03/12/2010: Intro and guest
Through her work as a pastoral scientist, Katherine Tozer, fell in love with back country scenery and rural people. She's compiled a book, 'Tales from the Back Country', which blends stories about working dogs and NZ scenery. All the proceeds go to charities. [more]

03/12/2010: Regional Wrap
A very early start to the drought season is blighting much of the North and South Islands. [more]

03/12/2010: 'Mickey' McDonald
King Country farmer Alan McDonald is a former world champion shearer. He has also held a number of shearing records. [more]

03/12/2010: Neudorf Mushrooms
Fungi fanatic Hannes Krummenacher grows mushrooms on the family farm in Upper Moutere and in season supplies local restaurants with gourmet varieties, such as Saffron Milk caps and Birch boletes. The mushrooms can also be purchased fresh or dried at the Nelson Farmers' Market. [more]

10/12/2010: Intro and Regional Wrap
Dry conditions start to bite around the country, Waikato joins Northland in asking for government assistance. [more]

10/12/2010: Sheep Heaven - 14. Offspring Sale
The end of the year is here and it's time to rid the lifestyle block of ram lambs and old ewes. Prices at the Frankton market have been firm, will it stay that way for Sheep Heaven's visit. [more]

10/12/2010: The Trug Maker
Brett Hutchinson has been making traditional wooden trugs on his farm near Takaka for nearly 20 years. [more]

10/12/2010: Heather and Joe Heberley
Heather and Joe Heberley farm 900 hectares on Arapawa Island in the Marlborough Sounds. They've gone from running romneys to merinos and developing the land over the past 30 years. Heather's also written five books, a couple of them about life on the island. [more]

17/12/2010: Intro and Guest
Federated Farmers Chief Executive Conor English looks back at 2010. [more]

17/12/2010: Regional Wrap
The rain has finally arrived! [more]

17/12/2010: Wonder woman
Training bulls. Fencing. Drenching. Draughting. Dosing. Weighing. Mustering... Noeline Ludbrook does it all. At 76, she's rapt with her life as a locum farmer, travelling the country in her fifth wheeler. Amelia Nurse chats with her about her life so far and her plans for the future. [more]

17/12/2010: Garden of Eden
Building and land development at the Atamai Eco Village is gaining momentum and eventually the sustainable community will accommodate up to 200 villagers on 60 hectares of organic farmland near Motueka. [more]

28/01/2011: Intro and Regional Wrap
A million dollar rain has fallen in the North Island and in the south, a wonderful summer has been good to farmers and horticulturalists. [more]

28/01/2011: Aussie Floods
Brad Markham reports from Bundaberg. [more]

28/01/2011: Goats' Milk
Paulette Fawcett makes soap from her goat's milk on a lifestyle block in North Canterbury. [more]

28/01/2011: Hohepa's Halswell Farm
The Hohepa Foundation's Halswell Farm near Christchurch gives intellectually disabled people the opportunity to get their gum boots on and have some fun digging, planting and growing food for their own consumption. [more]

04/02/2011: Intro and Run Rabbit Run
Three enterprising North Canterbury children, Natalie, Bonnie and Serita Fawcett run a bunny business. [more]

04/02/2011: Regional Wrap
Heavy rain last weekend will set many North Island areas up for the next month or so, while in the South Island... [more]

04/02/2011: Sculpture Park
John Wakeling has turned a derelict quarry in the Waikato countryside into an arboretum and sculpture park. [more]

04/02/2011: Westridge Farm
Three years ago Westidge Farm in King Country opened its farm gates to walkers, since then hundreds of people have enjoyed the hospitality offered by Sue Fraser and the farm's impressive bush, birdlife and views. [more]

11/02/2011: Intro and Guest
Federated Farmers Meat and Fibre Chairperson Bruce Wills. [more]

11/02/2011: Regional Wrap
This year's export apple crop from Hawkes Bay's looking good, while across much of South Island everythings growing like mad after some heavy rain ealier this week. [more]

11/02/2011: Sheep Heaven - 15. Killing the Fatted Ram
Sheep Heaven is calling in the home kill butcher because the young rams may need removing from the flock. [more]

11/02/2011: The Chilli and Capsicum Company
Marion and Troy Matthews run a Chilli and Capsicum Company growing business from a huge tunnel house near Rangiora in North Canterbury. [more]

11/02/2011: Odd Jobs 4 Rural Bods Spray Calibrator
Bill May is probably New Zealand's only full time spray calibrator. He checks the workings on orchard sprayers from Northland to Gisborne, as well as doing research into spray drift, and running Growsafe courses teaching people about safe chemical use. [more]

18/02/2011: Intro and Regional Wrap
Spring like grass growth continues across much of the North Island and lambs are nearing their optimum weight after another fine week in the South. [more]

18/02/2011: Northland Carpet
Tired of appalling returns for their wool clip, 23 Northland farmers joined forces three years ago to manufacture and market their own wool carpets under the brand OrigiNZ. Chairman Bob Steed talks about progress so far. [more]

18/02/2011: Wool Opportunities in the United States
NZ Farmers Weekly journalist Hugh Stringleman talks about US retailer reaction to New Zealand wool carpets. He's recently back from the huge Surfaces expo in Las Vegas. [more]

18/02/2011: Tui - A Community Lifestyle
The Tui Community near Takaka is a blend of an"intentional community"and a"village"where people deliberately come together, to share lives in a way that reaches out beyond nuclear family living. The self-sufficient community was established on farmland in Wainui Bay over 25 years ago and has a resident population of around 30 people. [more]

04/03/2011: Intro and Guest
Joakim Rosengren CEO/President of De Laval. [more]

04/03/2011: Regional Wrap
Maize harvesting's started a few weeks early in the North Island, while in the South Island many regions are having their best summer for a long time. [more]

04/03/2011: Figs in Hawkes Bay
Helen Walker and Murray Douglas are fig enthusiasts and grow them on their horticultural block near Havelock North in Hawkes Bay. [more]

04/03/2011: Pukeatua Peak
Jeff and Fiona Graham milk 400 goats near Te Awamutu in Waikato, they make organic compost , and sell their award winning goats cheese around the countryside. [more]

11/03/2011: Intro and Latitude Guest 20 Degrees South
The pin is back in the map and we're visiting Latitude 20 degrees south today. George Scott is manager of Lake Nash Station. [more]

11/03/2011: Regional Wrap
The North Island had extremely useful rain last weekend and cooler nights are helping mature apples and grapes, and autumn has arrived in the South Island as well this week. [more]

11/03/2011: Crofts Wines
Peter and May Croft are artisan wine makers. They swapped a life in Wellington for one in Wairarapa over ten years ago. [more]

11/03/2011: Precision Agriculture
An ordinary-looking farm in Pukekohe is hosting a high-tech trial in precision agricultural techniques. Satellite-guided tractors are ploughing fields with a degree of precision previously unheard of, and this new approach is pretty quickly proving its worth. [more]

18/03/2011: Intro and Guest
Pipfruit consultant Ross Wilson says the apple harvest is progressing well with beautifully coloured fruit coming off the trees. [more]

18/03/2011: Regional Wrap
Army worms are on the march and most places in the South Island are having a very kind autumn. [more]

18/03/2011: Simcro
Simcro designs and makes animal health delivery systems and its drench guns, injection devices and applicators are exported to 65 countries. [more]

18/03/2011: Precision Agriculture
An ordinary-looking farm in Pukekohe is hosting a high-tech trial in precision agricultural techniques. Satellite-guided tractors are ploughing fields with a degree of precision previously unheard of, and this new approach is pretty quickly proving its worth. [more]

25/03/2011: Intro and Latitude 20 Guest
Per Ivar Vaje works for the Norwegian Mission Society as an advisor in agriculture and the environment in Madagascar. [more]

25/03/2011: Regional Wrap
Northland's having a great start to autumn, and in the South Island there's plenty of grass in Canterbury, while Marlborough is drying off. [more]

25/03/2011: Feedback
Emails from Scott Dunavan and Su Macann. [more]

25/03/2011: Wandering Willie
Wandering Willie may not wander much longer, following the release this week of a Brazilian beetle intended to target the invasive weed. [more]

25/03/2011: Climate change and weeds
How will climate change affect the spread of exotic weeds? Christine Sheppard. [more]

25/03/2011: Wagyu Beef
In what's thought to be a world first, a small Hawkes Bay meat company, First Light Foods, is selling well marbled, grass fed, wagyu beef to international customers. The company's transparent payment system for the meat is being hailed by farmers as a dream come true. Jason Ross, Geff Cookson, Bob Thompson. [more]

01/04/2011: Intro and Regional Wrap
The North Island's having a pearler of a start to autumn and apple harvesting is in full swing in both the North and South Islands. [more]

01/04/2011: Harvest Marlborough
The wine industry is warning of another season of low prices for grapes that could send some struggling growers to the wall. [more]

01/04/2011: Urban Farming
Dairy farmer Lou Neilson shows Amelia Nurse around his latest dairying venture. [more]

01/04/2011: A Balmy Business
They are natural, soothing and used around the world. Tui Bee Balms and waxes are made at the tranquil Tui Community in Golden Bay and this growing business supports at least a dozen of Tui's long-term occupants. [more]

01/04/2011: Stonecroft Wines
Stonecroft was one of the first wineries to be established in the part of Hawke's Bay now known as the Gimblett Gravels. The vineyard was established over two decades ago by Dr Alan Limmer. In June last year he sold it to Andria Monin and Dermot McCollum who are about to start their first harvest. [more]

02/04/2011: Intro and Run Rabbit Run
Three enterprising North Canterbury children, Natalie, Bonnie and Serita Fawcett run a bunny business. [more]

08/04/2011: Intro and Regional Wrap
Temperatures have cooled markedly around the North Island, but it's producing the best autumn for many, in years. In the South, there's snow on the mountains. [more]

08/04/2011: Lettuce Listen Up
Ian Kerr produces a range of salad greens near Lake Karapiro. [more]

08/04/2011: Shocking sheds
Peter Dewes hunts down stray voltage in dairy sheds. [more]

15/04/2011: Latitude 20 South
Cook Island growers are hoping to supply paw paw to New Zealand year round. [more]

15/04/2011: Regional Wrap
North Island farmers are looking forward to a dollop of rain this weekend. In the Marlborough, conditions have been perfect for picking grapes. [more]

15/04/2011: Dabbling with Dexters
Dexter cattle are a small breed of cattle and are growing in numbers in New Zealand. The cows are about a metre in height - bulls a little taller. That makes then just a bit more than two thirds of the size of a Friesian. [more]

22/04/2011: Intro and Guest
On farm fix-it-man Allan Kennett of Kennett's Agricultural Engineering in Leeston, Canterbury. [more]

22/04/2011: Regional Roundup
All through the North Island farmers and growers are feeling pretty confident as a slow start to winter sees good grass growth and good returns on the fruit harvest. In the South Island pip fruit harvesting is coming to an end and Rams are being put out for mating. [more]

22/04/2011: Rooting for Wasabi
Fenton Wood grows Wasabi in tunnel houses near Lake Ellesmere in Canterbury. His business is aptly named Pure Wasabi and the processing of the 'rhizome' or root-like stem is done on site. [more]

22/04/2011: A not so odd rural job
Farm consultants Bob Thompson and Gareth Baynham service clients in Northland. They see themselves as part of a farming team and are stimulated by the range of roles the job offers. [more]

22/04/2011: Sheep Heaven - 16. The naming of a flock
Sheep Heaven is back with a new young ram to mate the flock of 12 ewe lambs. These young girls also get named and apparently there's some link between them and the Waikato Bay of Plenty Magic netball team. [more]

29/04/2011: Intro and Regional Wrap
In the North Island it's been a frustrating week for Bay of Plenty Kiwifruit growers and pickers, while in the South Island frisky Rams are out mating with Ewes in Southland. [more]

29/04/2011: Laurie the Luthier
Luthier Laurie Williams lives in the Far North. To reach him requires a rugged drive on gravel roads but the beauty of the instruments he crafts from native wood is sublime. He selects the trees and controls the process from the rough sawn timber to the final product. On the international market his guitars can fetch upwards of ten thousand US dollars. [more]

29/04/2011: Showtime in Oxford
The Oxford Agricultural and Pastoral Show is in its 105th year and as well as having every imaginable farm animal and garden vegetable on show, it also celebrates the vitality of this rural North Canterbury community. [more]

06/05/2011: Intro and Guest
Shay and Kane Manual operate a portable sawmill set up in a forested gully near Cust. [more]

06/05/2011: Regional Wrap
Summer and autumn have come together in the North Island with very mild, but also very wet conditions. It's much the same in the South Island with warm weather helping push grass growth along still. [more]

06/05/2011: Omihi Primary School
A year after our first visit, we return to Omihi Primary School in the Waipara Valley to find out about a bio-diversity trail the children were creating on the school grounds. The project's completed and for the celebration, some guests had come from as far a field as Japan. [more]

06/05/2011: Competitively Carriage Driving
Carriage driving attracts a small but very dedicated group of competitors. In summer every second weekend they compete in events all around the North sland. Carriages are hitched up to ponies, grooms put on their tweed jackets and cheesecutter hats, and drivers don their aprons before competition begins in the paddock [more]

13/05/2011: Intro and Guest
Bay de Lautour has been farming for more than 50 years and has been involved in many industry organisations. [more]

13/05/2011: Regional Wrap
Grass has been shooting out of the ground in the North and South Islands thanks to warm and wet conditions. [more]

13/05/2011: Sheep Heaven - 17. Netball Competition
The 12 ewe hoggets, named after the BOP Magic Netball team, have been hand dagged in preparation for Sunday's big ANZ Netball championship clash between the BOP Magic and Northern Mystics at Mystery Creek. Email which team will win and by what margin to go in the draw for a warm winter beanie. [more]

13/05/2011: Putting Kiwifruit to the Test
When do you pick kiwifruit - when it's May and they're big enough? Well it's not that simple. [more]

13/05/2011: Ride and Rock
The Rangiora 8 Seconds Bullriding Rodeo pits New Zealand best riders with a truckload of angry Kiwi bulls that are bred to buck. [more]

20/05/2011: Intro and Guest
Guy Porter from Waipara Valley's Bellbird Spring vineyard. [more]

20/05/2011: Regional Wrap
It's wet in the North Island but still a stunning autumn generally, and the South Island's looking fresh too. Plenty of feed and stock in good condition. [more]

20/05/2011: El dos Cadena Alpacas
As well as farming a small number of Merinos and Alpacas on her Swannanoa lifestyle block, Maria Churchill and her children also breed Chinchillas that are growing in popularity as a household pet. [more]

20/05/2011: A Horse of Course
In summer months, all over the country, horse riders gather to trek over farmland and bush paths for anything from two days, to a week or more. Country Life joins 23 keen individuals who are part of Taumarunui Intrepid Trekkers, on a five day trek around the Mahia Peninsula. This group's met annually for 17 years. The average rider's age is 60. [more]

27/05/2011: Intro and Guest
Bob Thompson reports on good stock health, prices and pasture conditions in Northland, but says structural change is needed in the industry in order to maintain top prices. [more]

27/05/2011: Regional Wrap
There has been a lot of rain in both islands but temperatures remain extremely mild. [more]

27/05/2011: Pernel Fruitworld
This Hawkes Bay pip and stonefruit orchard has been in the Mardon family for four generations. Growing apples commercially has been a tough road in recent years, but Philip, David and Ian Mardon all hope new apple varieties and the opening up of the Australian market will improve returns. [more]

27/05/2011: Winterfeeding in Waimahaka
Southland farmers Ian and Heather Smith run sheep and beef on their coastal farm near Waimahaka. Ian is the third generation of Smiths to farm on this rolling piece of land. [more]

03/06/2011: Intro and Guest
CEO of Landcorp, Chris Kelly, is keen to see the meat industry structured in a similar way to the kiwifruit or dairy industries and is heartened that farmers are at last realising the need to change their traditional way of dealing with meat companies. [more]

03/06/2011: Regional Wrap
It has remained unseasonally warm in both islands and store stock prices are "hot". [more]

03/06/2011: Holy Cheese
Karikaas cheeses are all hand-made using traditional European methods by cheese-makers who are proud of their traditions and skill. [more]

03/06/2011: The Last Colonial
Doug Wallace uses horses to pull his bush-tram through his plantations near Taupo. [more]

10/06/2011: Intro and Guest
The Gore Organic Food Co-Op has moved into a modest room in Brennan Lane, behind the old Creamoata factory that once was the home of Fleming's oatmeal porridge. While passing through Gore recently Cosmo Kentish-Barnes popped in and met co-coordinator Anna Butcher who told him how it all began. [more]

10/06/2011: Regional Wrap
North Island pasture growth rates are about double the usual for this time of year and South Island farmers are still waiting for winter to arrive. [more]

10/06/2011: Te Rapa Tour
Fonterra shows thousands of people through its Te Rapa site. [more]

10/06/2011: The Ultimate Implement Club
The Thornbury Vintage Tractor and Implement Club in Thornbury, Southland is the oldest vintage tractor club in New Zealand. It was formed over 50 years ago by three gentlemen following the recovery and subsequent restoration of a 1914 tractor. This tractor is now proudly displayed at the club's museum with many other pieces of rural memorabilia dating backing to 1880. [more]

17/06/2011: Fieldays Welcome and Guest
The 43rd National Agricultural Fieldays is underway at Mystery Creek. Wool is being profiled this year. Susan Murray meets sheep breeder Roger Barton. [more]

17/06/2011: Selling Southland
Invercargill Mayor Tim Shadbolt wants North Island farmers to move south. [more]

17/06/2011: Cowapatche
A North Auckland farmer is sticking fluoro polka dot patches on a cow's rear end. [more]

17/06/2011: Fonterra director Greg Gent
Founding Fonterra director Greg Gent is stepping down after 10 years in the job. [more]

17/06/2011: Waipiri Holstein Friesian Stud Sells Cows
About 400 buyers and interested observers packed into a marquee on a Waikato dairy farm on Thursday night as 90 cows and calves from New Zealand's top producing herd are sold. Extra staff were flown in from Australia and Britain to wash, clip, teach and titivate so the animals present well on the night. The top price: $19,000. [more]

24/06/2011: Introduction and Regional Wrap
Warm, wet conditions are the order of the day around the North Island while in the South pruning's in full swing and ewe scanning continues in most regions. [more]

24/06/2011: Vitally Valuable Vet
Theresa Hoyle set up a veterinary practice in the small rural town of Wairoa four years ago. She now employs a second vet and two trained vet nurses. She helps the SPCA fundraise to pay for medical treatment for the animals, does house calls for the elderly and poor, and runs first aid classes for working dogs. [more]

24/06/2011: Marama Organic Farm
Graham Clarke and partner Gisele McLachlan are focusing on improving human health through food at Marama Organic Farm, which sits on the green hills above Waipahi in South Otago and is one of New Zealand's biggest organically certified sheep farms. [more]

01/07/2011: Hello and Guest
Pollination biologist Dr. Linda Newstrom-Lloyd talks about the 'Trees for Bees' programme, which has been established by the Federated Farmers Bee Industry Group. [more]

01/07/2011: Regional Wrap
The North Island is still saturated but chilly fine days arrived mid week. In the South Island, Otago's had its first hard frost of the winter. [more]

01/07/2011: News
The new president of Federated Farmers Bruce Wills outlines clear priorities for the organisation. He's a Hawke's Bay sheep and beef farmer, replacing Don Nicolson, who's headed the farmer advocacy organisation for the past three years. [more]

01/07/2011: Ashley Hotel's Annual Pig Hunt
On a wet Sunday afternoon dozens of hunters mingle outside the Ashley Hotel in North Canterbury after dropping off their entries for the annual pig hunt. [more]

01/07/2011: Mahi Boys
The Mahi Boys work each day on farms, orchards and other rural properties in the Bay of Plenty. The men call themselves 'psych survivors' - they live with mental illness and are picking up skills they hope will lead to a job. [more]

08/07/2011: Gidday and Regional Wrap
Wet conditions are still haunting most North Island farmers while in the South Island more snow has fallen and some farms are also struggling in the wet. [more]

08/07/2011: A Tail Of ManyTales
The new President of Federated Farmers, Bruce Wills, believes leaving longer tails on lambs has many benefits, although he admits he gets ridiculed for it when they appear at the sale-yards with most of their tails still intact. [more]

08/07/2011: Kapiti Conservation
Nga Uruora is a Maori phrase meaning Groves of Life - and it's also a conservation project on the Kapiti Coast. Set up in 1997, its aim is to coax back the dawn chorus from nearby Kapiti Island Nature Reserve by creating a ribbon of bird-safe native forest running from Porirua through to Waikanae. [more]

08/07/2011: The Economics of Dairying
Hillcrest High School students head out to a dairy farm to gather information for an NCEA assessment. [more]

15/07/2011: Wool Based Disposable Nappies
Potroz-Smith Technologies is developing a super absorbent wool-based material called NatraZorb, to be used in disposable nappies, amongst other things. Derelee Potroz-Smith says the idea started on her family's Taranaki farm with romney sheep. [more]

15/07/2011: Regional Wrap
July's turned into an incredible challenging, wet and windy month around much of New Zealand. [more]

15/07/2011: Sheep Heaven - 18. How Good is the Wool?
A sample of wool from Arahi, one of the ewe hoggets gets taken to the National Agricultural Fieldays to test its quality. There's a new fancy machine which comes up with lots of useful measurements. [more]

15/07/2011: Making a Lifestyle Block Make Money
The Madsens own a beautiful home in a cluster of lifestyle blocks in North Auckland. They have a few pigs and a sheep on their one hectare of land. So far, so ordinary. But the couple have built a unique way of life by turning the idea of the unproductive lifestyle block on its head. They run a herd of 150 cattle, over a number of blocks. [more]

15/07/2011: A New Home for Koanga Institute and Gardens
For the past 25 years Kay Baxter and her husband Bob Corker have been saving New Zealand's heritage fruit trees and vegetables at Koanga Gardens in Kaiwaka. But five years ago they decided they needed a new place to live so have found a new home near Wairoa where they're developing a Community Land Trust which they hope will support up to 30 families. [more]

22/07/2011: Sheep Heaven - 19. Off with the Wool
Dr Clive Dalton hand clips Arahi the ewe hogget. How many beanies will her two and a half kilo fleece make? The lovely looking wool is off to Kane Carding in Wairarapa and will be spun and knitted by two classic crafty women in Waikato. [more]

22/07/2011: Regional Wrap
Most of the South Island's had a chance to dry out this week - but cold weather's on the way. Calves are beginning to arrive thick and fast in the North Island. [more]

22/07/2011: Carne Technologies
Carne Technologies is a Cambridge firm which specialises in research and development work around the electrical stunning and stimulation of meat carcasses to produce the best possible meat to eat. It also works with meat colour, tenderness, pH, succulence and texture. [more]

22/07/2011: Moon Over Martinborough
Amelia Nurse heads out to a Martinborough olive grove to see how two city boys are faring with their trees. [more]

22/07/2011: Bonus audio: Henry and Francoise
Jared Gulian tells the story of the late blooming love of Old Man Henry and Francoise the Aracauna. [more]

29/07/2011: Gidday and Young Grower of the Year
An employee of New Zealand's largest fresh market tomato grower, Status Produce from Pukekohe, has won the Young Grower of the Year competition, run by Horticulture New Zealand. 29 year old Ben Smith has a science degree and says there are so many opportunities for bright students to work in horticulture. [more]

29/07/2011: Regional Wrap
After a chilly start to the week, the North Island ended up mildish and dry by Friday. The South Island's east coast around Christchurch and coastal Southland got snow, but inland areas were snow free. [more]

29/07/2011: Sheep Heaven - 20. Wool Cheque
Sheep Heaven has more wool to sell. Some from the just shorn hoggets, and some lambs wool held from last spring. With basically a doubling in wool prices since January, will the wool cheque cover the price of shearing this year? [more]

29/07/2011: Nestling - A Baby Product Company
For the third year, Rural Women New Zealand has offered an Enterprising Rural Women's award, and this year a company called Nestling was the North Island winner. Amelia Nurse went to visit Mari Fe Rohrlach, one half of the two sister team, on a farm outside Rotorua to see Nestling's baby wraps and slings that are made out of cotton and merino wool. [more]

29/07/2011: Brew Moon Brewery
Kieran McCauley is the one-man-show behind Brew Moon, a brewery near Amberley in North Canterbury that produces a range of handcrafted beers. [more]

29/07/2011: Cornwall Park Farm
Smack in the middle of some of the country's most expensive real estate is a full working farm. Cornwall Park and the farm within it have occupied the land around Auckland's One Tree Hill for more than 150 years. This urban farm is home to sheep, cattle and the odd chicken, as well as lots of people, a mix that doesn't usually go together. But these are quite special animals, with a surprisingly high tolerance level for people. [more]

05/08/2011: Gidday and Guest
Brian Peacock looks at trends in rural real estate. [more]

05/08/2011: Regional Wrap
In the North Island calving is going well everywhere and the South Island has had a pretty kind week weatherwise with lambing and calving getting underway in many areas. [more]

05/08/2011: Wool Warrior
Janette Eason-Savage plans to export new Zealand knitting yarn to the UK. She's set up her business on a northern King Country farm. [more]

05/08/2011: Kusuda Wines, From Sydney to Martinborough
Hiroyuki Kusuda was born in Tokyo and on a clear path to be a life long salary man. But a love of wine and a desire to become a winemaker saw him leave the Japanese embassy in Sydney to learn German, study Oenology and Viticulture at Geisenheim University in Germany and finally relocate the family to Martinborough in 2001. He brings a particularly Japanese sensibility and attention to detail to his winemaking. [more]

12/08/2011: Sherrington Grange
Sherrington Grange recently won the Rural Women Enterprise Award not only for the South Island, but the National award as well. It's a mother and daughter boutique cheese making operation which offers home stays and cheese making courses at Mahau Sound between Picton and Nelson. Fill your pot with milk and find out how to make ricotta cheese. [more]

12/08/2011: Murray Heays
80-year-old Murray Heays is one Hawke's Bay's first deer farmers. Throughout the 1970s he captured wild deer on his steep, gorge carved, property west of Tutira. After gradually fencing them in and getting them calm, he began harvesting velvet, travelling to South Korea on several occasions to sell the product. He returned one time with a suitcase stuffed full of US dollars. [more]

19/08/2011: Gidday and Guest
Feilding flower man, John Whittaker. [more]

19/08/2011: Regional Wrap
A white blanket covered much of the country this week - but some areas had beautiful sunshine. [more]

19/08/2011: Takana Nursery
Don Turner, former managing director of Turners and Growers is putting green fingers to work growing 2 to 5 metre tall native trees in his commercial nursery. He has more than 80 different types of native trees for sale. [more]

19/08/2011: Mt. Albert Grammar School Farm
It's often said that town kids don't know anything about rural life anymore, and even less about where their food comes from. And maybe that's true. But a little hands-on education does wonders for even the slickest of city kids, and may just inspire a few to turn their hand to farming. Justin Gregory joins a group of junior students from Auckland's Diocesan School for Girls for a visit to a unique farm that's all about educating kids. [more]

26/08/2011: Gidday and Guest
Ros Rowe is the founder and driving force behind the Leg-Up Trust, a charitable organisation that's changing the lives of disadvantaged youth. [more]

26/08/2011: Regional Wrap
A good dose of sun this week has melted the snow just in time for lambing . Calving's in full swing around the country. [more]

26/08/2011: Hapuku Grove
It's harvest time at Tony Wilson's Hapuku olive grove that's nestled between the Kaikoura Seaward Mountains and Mangamaunu Bay. [more]

26/08/2011: Sweet Peacharines
Diana and Grant Baird grow peacharines on their sheep and beef farm in the Kawhatau Valley. The frosts are legendary, and the summers are hot. [more]

02/09/2011: Gidday and The Rugby Link
Doug Edmeades and Sasha Penny talk about four Waikato based tours -dairy, equine, sheep and beef, and horticulture - aimed to fit in just before the Rugby World Cup semi finals.The days are hosted by Sir Brian Lahore, Sir Colin Meads and Sir Patrick Hogan, along with Ian Kirkpatrick [more]

02/09/2011: Wagner, Mozart, Shakespeare and Donkeys
Andrea Thomson's the President of the Donkey and Mule Society and is a trustee of the Donkey and Mule Protection Trust. [more]

02/09/2011: Regional Wrap
Gentle rain has fallen in the North Island and some snow in the South. [more]

02/09/2011: Farming for the Future
Cosmo Kentish-Barnes visits Southland farmers Grant and Bernadette Weller, winners of the inaugural National Ballance Farm Environment Awards, to find out what gives them an edge when it comes to sustainable farming. [more]

09/09/2011: Gidday and Guest
Seal pups make their way up a mountain stream near Kaikoura to play for the day. [more]

09/09/2011: Regional Wrap
The far north is extremely dry and it's been brilliant weather for calving and lambing in the South. [more]

09/09/2011: The Art of Marketing Wool
Professor Baba Shiv is a Marketing expert from Stanford University in California and has a longstanding relationship with The New Zealand Merino Company. [more]

09/09/2011: Pig Passion
Pig hunting competitions are seen as a good community fundraiser and they're particularly popular just before lambing because it reduces pig numbers, stopping them preying on newborn lambs. The hunters see it as a great social day out as well as a food source, so join a gang of guys hunting in near vertical hills near Whangamomona in Taranaki. [more]

16/09/2011: Gidday and Guest
Sarah Laugesen is the principal of Woodbank Primary School in Marlborough that has only four pupils. [more]

16/09/2011: Islands of Intrigue - Episode 1
Country Life team embark on an epic movie trailer adventure. [more]

16/09/2011: Regional Wrap
Around the country some welcome rain fell in most places of the North Island this week, while winter conditions are clinging onto the South. [more]

16/09/2011: Sheep Heaven - 21: Beanies
Wool from one of Sheep Heaven's hoggets, Arahi, has been turned into superior quality, highly desirable, cream coloured beanies. Lilly Gable spun the wool, Sylvia Sealey knitted it. [more]

16/09/2011: The World is Your Oyster
Cosmo Kentish-Barnes joins thousands of foodies from around the country who flock to the annual Bluff Oyster Festival in search of a Foveaux Strait seafood fix. [more]

23/09/2011: Gidday and Agriculture Shines
Hannah Appleton and Hamish Best, Massey University post grad students looking at a bright future in agriculture. [more]

23/09/2011: Regional Wrap
Pasture is starting to move in the North Island although it's still not in abundance anywhere. Apricots, nectarines and peaches are in full bloom in Central Otago. [more]

23/09/2011: Islands of Intrigue - Episode 2
Country Life team continue their epic movie trailer adventure. [more]

23/09/2011: Potty About Crays
Cosmo Kentish-Barnes meets Kaikoura Cray fisherman John Reader, who runs two boats from his base in Waipapa Bay. [more]

23/09/2011: Down Scaled Dairy Reaps Rewards
Jeff Williams used to milk three times a day on his Manawatu farm and he's won numerous awards for his intensive farming operation, but then he changed it all. He farms biologically and lets chickens wander around his paddocks. He's more relaxed and he's also making more money. [more]

30/09/2011: Gidday and Guest
Lincoln University senior agribusiness management lecturer, Nic Lees talks about increasing student numbers taking agribusiness courses. [more]

30/09/2011: Islands of Intrigue - Episode 3
Country Life team continue their epic movie trailer adventure. [more]

30/09/2011: Regional Wrap
In the North Island peak milk flow levels are being reached three weeks early, and in the South Island lambs are out and about and spring crops are going in. [more]

30/09/2011: A Ray of Light
Jason Wargent is researching the effects of UV rays on fruit and vegetable production at Massey University. [more]

30/09/2011: The Sheep Heaven Beanie Competition
The winners are announced! With Susan Murray and Clive Dalton. [more]

30/09/2011: A River Runs Through It
Derrick, Jane and Ben Millton run a sheep and beef operation and a lime manufacturing plant on the families historic farm, that overlooks the Clarence River in southern Malborough. [more]

07/10/2011: Gidday and Regional Wrap
In the North Island docking is underway and pasture growth rates are generally quite good, while in the South Island winter crops are being turned over and fruit trees are blossoming. [more]

07/10/2011: Highland Heaven
Karl and Christine Kohle have turned 20 hectares of gorse and scrub land into a thriving bio-dynamic farmlet and Highland Cattle stud in Loburn, North Canterbury. [more]

07/10/2011: Islands of Intrigue Episode 4
The Country Life team continue their epic movie trailer adventure. [more]

07/10/2011: Murky Waters
How clean are fresh water streams in New Zealand? There are plenty of figures painting a pretty gloomy picture of our nation's waterways and fingers are being pointed at dairy farmers. Freshwater ecologist Dr Mike Joy says drastic action is needed, Dairy NZ says it has seen a huge shift in its farmers' attitudes to water quality. [more]

14/10/2011: Gidday and Guest
Massey Agricultural student Helen Walker is doing her Phd in soil science. [more]

14/10/2011: Regional Wrap
Around the North Island it's been quite wet in the northern parts, PSA has been found on more kiwifruit orchards, and in the South Island bees are heading into pip fruit orchards. [more]

14/10/2011: What Direction Does the Water Flow
In the past two decades water quality has gradually declined in nearly all the monitored streams and rivers in Waikato. Two farmer councillors on Waikato Regional Council talk about changes that will be needed in water management in the region to halt the decline. [more]

14/10/2011: Islands of Intrigue - Episode 5
Country Life team continue their epic movie trailer adventure. [more]

14/10/2011: Animal Farm
The Kaikoura Farm Park is home to over 150 family friendly farm animals and owners Kevin and Lynn Cole also run a Llama trekking operation. The couple used do Llama trekking in England but after falling in love with New Zealand while visiting several years ago, they decided to pack their bags and set up shop here. [more]

21/10/2011: Gidday and Guest
Jimmy 'the butt' Adams has been driving livestock trucks in Southland for over 50 years. [more]

21/10/2011: Regional Wrap
There has been a lot of rain in the North Island again, holding up docking for some, and in the South Island snow hit the McKenzie country and floods hit Canterbury. [more]

21/10/2011: Edelweiss Gourmet Butchery
Edelweiss Butchery has a weekly stand at the Feilding Farmers' market and it also offers a home kill service. [more]

21/10/2011: Islands of Intrigue - Episode 6
The Country Life team continue their epic movie trailer adventure. [more]

21/10/2011: Managing Meat
Meat inspectors are required towork on every meat processing chain in New Zealand. What are they looking for and what do they find? Join Ira Stapp on a tour. [more]

21/10/2011: Dartmoors at Dingmac
Becky Pocock and Steve Phipps breed Dartmoor and sport ponies at Dingmac Stud in Coopers Creek, North Canterbury. [more]

28/10/2011: Udderly Robotic
Cosmo Kentish-Barnes visits New Zealand's first commercial robotic dairy farm near Ashburton where cows milk themselves when they want to. [more]

28/10/2011: Gidday and Regional Wrap
With gas supplies cut and dairy factories closed, many dairy farmers had to tip several milkings out, but otherwise the spring is looking really good in the North Island, while in the South Island early lambs are going to the meat processing plant. [more]

28/10/2011: Avocado Picking
Avocados for the domestic and overseas markets are coming off trees thick and fast. It will be the biggest crop ever picked in New Zealand and Country Life joins those on the hydra ladders picking the fruit, following it through to the packhouse. [more]

28/10/2011: Islands of Intrigue - Episode 7
The Country Life team continue their epic movie trailer adventure. [more]

04/11/2011: Gidday and Guest
Sam Bruzo founded the Filipino Dairy Workers in New Zealand advocacy group. [more]

04/11/2011: Regional Wrap
Around the country there's been a burst of growth on North Island farms and, on the mainland, dairy cows have reached their milking peak for the season. [more]

04/11/2011: Soap Opera
Warren Bryson and Renee Boe founded Blue Earth at their isolated property near Mount Hutt. They hand produce natural soaps, balms and moisturisers in a purpose built, solar powered workshop. [more]

04/11/2011: Islands of Intrigue - Episode 8
The Country Life team continue their epic movie trailer adventure. [more]

04/11/2011: Through the Grape Vine
Raymond Thompson is a bit of a Renaissance man who travels the world for his work. He's never happier though than when he's working in his vineyard in Martinborough. Amelia Nurse pays him a visit. [more]

11/11/2011: Gidday and Guest
Ian Nicholas, Trees on Farms [more]

11/11/2011: Regional Wrap
There's a planting frenzy near Gisborne and in the South Island, Canterbury has had perfect conditions for growth. [more]

11/11/2011: The Rise of Life Cycle Management
Trends are changing overseas when it comes to environmental accountability with suppliers increasingly needing to prove sound environmental practice. Amelia Nurse talks to Sarah McLaren, director of the NZ Centre for Life Cycle Management. [more]

11/11/2011: The Big Apple
Pyramid Valley farmers Surrey and Dallas Earl have developed a system of growing fruit in their orchard based on a study of roadside fruit trees, which are never pruned or sprayed, yet often produce tasty fruit. They also grow Russian garlic and other organic vegetables that are sold in their own little shop in Waikari. [more]

18/11/2011: Gidday and Guest
Jan Howden's Overflow Store in Mayfield must be the most stocked second-hand shop in New Zealand. [more]

18/11/2011: Regional Wrap
Silage contractors are frustrated in the North Island as wet weather interrupts work, and in parts of the South Island, crops are bolting out of the ground. [more]

18/11/2011: Islands of Intrigue - Episode 9
The Country Life team continues its epic movie trailer adventure. [more]

18/11/2011: Flower Power
Damian Hughes oversees Dutch company Royal Van Zanten's lily bulb growing operation in Rakaia, Canterbury. The bulbs are exported to the United States, Asia, Australia and Europe. [more]

18/11/2011: Granny Garnett
English woman Sarah Garnett's a champion in the sport of carriage driving, she also has a knack for working with cattle and is rugby mad. [more]

25/11/2011: Gidday and Guest
Helicopter pilot Alister Boyd. [more]

25/11/2011: Regional Wrap
Rain has been delaying farm work in the North Island and in the South Island silage and bailage making's in full swing. [more]

25/11/2011: Islands of Intrigue - Episode 10
The Country Life team continue their epic movie trailer adventure. [more]

25/11/2011: Hijacked over China
Carriage driving champion and former cattle market worker Sarah Garnett tells of being hijacked in a plane. [more]

25/11/2011: La Belle Salive
Mike and Claudia Weersing have converted an 80 acre sheep farm in North Canterbury's Pyramid Valley into a biodynamic vineyard, where the principle focus is to create wines that truly reflect the soil and the general environment the grapes are grown in. [more]

02/12/2011: Gidday and Guest
Darfield agricultural contractor David Buckley. [more]

02/12/2011: Regional Wrap
The wind has died down but rain is needed in the North Island, and in the South Island farmers are mopping up after last weeks flooding on the West Coast. [more]

02/12/2011: Sew Lovely
Christine Win makes clothing for hunters, farmers, tourists and even dogs from a converted garage at her home near Murchison. [more]

02/12/2011: Islands of Intrigue - Episode 11
Life team continue their epic movie trailer adventure. [more]

02/12/2011: Poripori Farm Trust
The 1550 hectare Poripori Farm Trust in Bay of Plenty runs sheep, cattle and deer as well as having kiwifruit, tamarillos and olives. It's in the middle of an ambitious riparian and steep sidlings planting scheme which will see nearly 370 hectares of land in pine trees. The day's activity changed from docking, to deer velveting. Peter Maguire and Uenuku Peita [more]

09/12/2011: Gidday and Guest
Massy University student James Lawn has been picked as a future agri-business leader. [more]

09/12/2011: Regional Wrap
The North Island had a hot and sunny end to the week and conditions have been near perfect for hay making in Otago. [more]

09/12/2011: Islands of Intrigue Episode 12
The penultimate adventure of the Country Life team. [more]

09/12/2011: NZ Native Flora
The Pyes Pa nursery near Tauranga is a family business that grows more than a hundred thousand seedlings a year. It's expanded rapidly from taking up a corner of a dairy farm, to two properties as more farmers get into trees. Some are spending 40 thousand dollars planting up gullies and steep faces. [more]

09/12/2011: Born To Ride
Dallas and Kate Kinzett breed horses capable of excelling at any discipline. They first started breeding when they moved to the Tutaki Valley near Murchison in 1978 and have continued with the same good line of horses bred by their fathers. [more]

16/12/2011: Christmas on the Farm
A classic recording from 1951, of a farmer's wife from Wanganui who shares her tale of Christmas on the farm [more]

16/12/2011: Pukeatua Peak
Jeff and Fiona Graham milk 400 goats near Te Awamutu in Waikato, they also make organic compost and sell their award winning goats cheese around the countryside. [more]

16/12/2011: Double Dan
More than 12 and a half thousand people turned out to the first ever Equidays at Mystery Creek near Hamilton. It showcased the entire equine sector, and was a chance to buy gear, attend clinics run by internatonal riding experts and to be entertained by highly skilled horsemen. Australian's Dan James and Dan Steers were in the line up, and are famous for their horseback stunts. [more]

16/12/2011: Final Episode of the Epic Adventure
The Country Life team finally get to eat Christmas dinner. [more]

16/12/2011: Artfully Asparagus
Jill Brandon works in an asparagus pack house during asparagus season and loves travelling around NZ and Australia doing seasonal work with her husband. They're both retired now, which means she has more time for her art. And in an unprecedented conjunction of these two aspects of her life, she recently had an exhibition in the asparagus pack house. [more]

24/12/2011: Animal Farm
The Kaikoura Farm Park is home to over 150 friendly farm animals and owners Kevin and Lynn Cole also run a llama trekking operation. The couple used do llama trekking in England but after falling in love with New Zealand while visiting several years ago, they decided to pack their bags and set up shop here. [more]

14/01/2012: Bucking Hell
The Rangiora 8 Seconds Bullriding Rodeo pits New Zealand best riders with a truckload of angry Kiwi bulls that are bred to buck. [more]

14/01/2012: The Last Colonial
Doug Wallace uses horses to pull a bush-tram through his plantations near Taupo. [more]

27/01/2012: Gidday and Guest
David Rose is a farmer from Southland - which has been on the brink of a drought. He says the summer dry has put crops back by a few months. [more]

27/01/2012: Regional Wrap
The North Island is flush with feed but many pastoral farmers are now struggling to maintain its quality. Store stock are fetching extremely good prices. In the South Island Canterbury's had marvellous weather for farming while Southland's dairy farmers are struggling with very dry condition. [more]

27/01/2012: Prinz's Mushrooms
Twenty-five year old Lennart Prinz grows oyster mushrooms in a grow-room constructed out of recycled materials. He sells the fleshy fungi at local markets. [more]

27/01/2012: The Buller Bushman
Stephen McGrath lives with his son and daughter in the old Newton Livery between Murchison and Inangahua. He is a bush farmer with a passion for Clydesdales, who earn their keep by working the soil and carting firewood up from a Kanuka forest he has planted on the edge of the Buller River. [more]

03/02/2012: Gidday and Guest
Massey University professor Dr Jacqueline Rowarth has just taken up a newly formed role as Professor of Agribusiness within Waikato University's Management School. The University wants graduates to come out with a better understanding of agriculture and agribusiness. [more]

03/02/2012: Regional Wrap
Export blueberry prices are much stronger at last, but avocados are not doing so well. In the South Island temperatures have been cooler and Southland farmers are still recovering from the drought conditions in January.. [more]

03/02/2012: Gorgeous Garlic
Liz Stanway grows 50 thousand bulbs of organic garlic on her property near Raglan. [more]

03/02/2012: Kakepuku Conservation
Kakepuku is a steep, distinctive mountain to the south west of Te Awamutu in Waikato. Seventeen years ago local farmers started pest control work on its 200 hectares. Now the bush has regenerated, and in 1999 native robins were translocated from Pureora Forest. More recently native falcon, karearea, have been added to the mix. [more]

03/02/2012: Cock and Bull Stories - Tales from Two Kiwi Country Vets
'After Hours Ripper' by Peter Jerram. [more]

10/02/2012: Gidday and Guest
Steve Wratten, Professor of Ecology at the Bio-Protection Research Centre at Lincoln University. [more]

10/02/2012: Regional Wrap
Summer's finally hit in the North Island and on the west coast of the South Isalnd regular rain is helping farms get into shape for autumn. [more]

10/02/2012: Go Goat Milking
After being a closed shop for over 20 years, the NZ Dairy Goat Co Op is suddenly after new suppliers. Its growth in export sales has far outstripped its supply base, and returns for farmers are extremely attractive .. it's just dairy goats are more work than dairy cows [more]

10/02/2012: Off the Grid
Alternative energy is Albie Burgers' passion - along with recycling and reusing. Amelia Nurse visits his rural Takaka property to see some of his amazing projects. [more]

17/02/2012: Intro and News Package
A group of scientists studying the young animals' behaviour have found that goats can develop their own accents, disproving claims that their voices are entirely genetic. [more]

17/02/2012: Regional Wrap
Many areas of the North Island had thundery heavy down pours this week, while in the South Island, the West Coast has been unseasonably hot and dry and Canterbury's pastoral farmers are smiling. [more]

17/02/2012: Perendale Fair
The Coalgate Perendale Ewe Fair with Donald Cooke of Rural Livestock Brokers. [more]

17/02/2012: Cock and Bull Stories - Tales from Two Kiwi Country Vets
'Faecal Facials' by Peter Jerram. [more]

17/02/2012: Hot Air
The New Zealand Agricultural Greenhouse Gas Research Centre in Palmerston North is funding research into reducing methane emissions from animals. [more]

24/02/2012: Gidday and Regional Wrap
It's been wet, wet, wet across the North and South Islands this week so there's grass to burn, but farmers are struggling to keep control of feed. [more]

24/02/2012: Tea at Paturau
Amelia Nurse visits Century Farmer Harry Richards at his remote West Coast farm at Paturau River. [more]

24/02/2012: The Milligan's of Murchison
Murchison dairy farming couple Kerry and Vicki Milligan have decided to call it a day after eleven seasons. [more]

02/03/2012: Gidday and Regional Wrap
North Island sheep farmers are focusing on getting condition on ewes in time for tupping. In the South Island forage crops are going in and early variety apples are coming off. [more]

02/03/2012: Homebush Station
The Homebush Homestead near Hororata was demolished after the September 2010 earthquake, but the 1872 brick stable on the 1300 acre farm's still standing and is home to a collection of All Black memorabilia dating back to 1902. [more]

02/03/2012: Cock and Bull Stories - Tales from Two Kiwi Country Vets
'Punctuality' by Peter Jerram [more]

02/03/2012: Kiwifruit Futures
The kiwifruit industry has been in the news a lot because of the vine killing bacteria PSA v. There are some new kiwifruit varieties which growers are now seeing as a bit of saviour. Country Life visits the heart of kiwifruit country, Te Puke, to hear about the impact of the arrival of PSA and what may lie in store. [more]

09/03/2012: Gidday and Regional Wrap
North Island sheep farmers are focusing on getting condition on ewes in time for tupping. In the South Island, ewes are putting on condition in preparation for the ram [more]

09/03/2012: Castlepoint Remembers
Last weekend Masterton hosted the Golden Shears and the 15th World Shearing Championship. To promote the event Castlepoint Station and Castlepoint lighthouse hosted visitors, and locals re-enacted the old days when sheep were driven down the beach and wool was loaded by bullock cart onto lighters and then onto a steamer. [more]

09/03/2012: Turning lives Around
Cosmo Kentish-Barnes heads into Canterbury's iconic high country in search of a horse trek run by the Christchurch based 180 Degrees Trust, that operates development programmes for teenagers who have trouble with main stream education or who have drug, alcohol and behavioural problems. [more]

16/03/2012: Gidday and Regional Wrap
In the North Island some light cows are being put on once a day milking and it's apple harvesting time in the South Island. [more]

16/03/2012: Willowmere
John and Kelvin Hicks grow a wide range of organic crops on their Mid-Canterbury farm. [more]

16/03/2012: Cock and Bull Stories - Tales from Two Kiwi Country Vets
'Race Day' by Peter Anderson. [more]

16/03/2012: Open Wide
Equine Dentist Warwick Behrns spends his days working on the mouths of horses, donkeys and sometimes even zebras. He says when he's watching horses race, he can tell immediately which ones have dental problems. [more]

23/03/2012: The Bee Advocate
Geoff Kipps Bolton speaks up for bees. He's from San Diego where bee numbers have been decimated by colony collapse disorder. [more]

23/03/2012: Gidday and Guest
The Minister of Immigration has released two guides this week to help migrant farm workers adjust to life in New Zealand. [more]

23/03/2012: Regional Wrap
The North Island has been wet, warm and windy and in the South grape harvesting has finally started after delays of up to three weeks. [more]

23/03/2012: The Biological Husbandry Unit
The BHU in Lincoln is home to the Future Farming Centre and the Organic Training College that delivers practical and theory training in Organic Horticulture. With Bill Martin and Dr Charles Merfield. [more]

30/03/2012: Regional Wrap
Summer has arrived in autumn in both the North and South Islands. [more]

30/03/2012: Cock and Bull Stories - Tales from Two Kiwi Country Vets
'Alternative Medicine' by Peter Jerram and Peter Anderson. [more]

30/03/2012: Oilskins and Oilpaint
Maruia dairy farmer Donna-Marie Hampton is also a talented landscape artist and her works capture the majestic scenery of the South Island. [more]

30/03/2012: The South African World Shearing Team
Prior to the 15th World Shearing Championships, held during the Golden Shears in early March, the South African team gathered in the backblocks of Wairarapa to practice. The machine shearers, all Black South Africans, had been in New Zealand for five months. The world class blade shearers only arrived four days before the competition and there was a last minute hitch. [more]

05/04/2012: Gidday and Guest
Grape grower Chris Howell talks about the 2012 year being a very challenging harvest, and many growers are feeling a little depressed. [more]

05/04/2012: Regional Wrap
Rain hammers Hawkes Bay and Gisborne and the South Island basks in sunshine. [more]

05/04/2012: Cervelt
Cervelt is a new, super fine, natural down fibre that comes from red deer. Its high value and superior qualities are sought after by fashion houses like Hermes. Only about 20 grams is harvested from each deer, so it takes the fibre from 15 deer to produce one standard knitted garment. [more]

05/04/2012: What a Buzz
The honey gathering season's slowing down in the South Island and so to find out how things are going for honey producers, Cosmo Kentish-Barnes visits Waimakariri beekeeper Simon Pulley. [more]

13/04/2012: Gidday Regional Wrap
The was good solid, welcome rainfall in many North Island areas mid week, and in the South Island, rams have been getting down to business amongst the ewes. [more]

13/04/2012: Cock and Bull Stories - Tales from Two Kiwi Country Vets
'Gymnastics and Testicles' by Peter Jerram and Peter Anderson. [more]

13/04/2012: River Dog
Film-maker James Muir talks about his acclaimed documentary that follows Wairarapa farmer Grant Muir, as he struggles against the odds to keep a local river clean. [more]

13/04/2012: Effluent Expo
Making sure effluent is dealt with properly on farms is a huge worry for dairy farmers. An Effluent Expo was held recently to help answer their questions. [more]

20/04/2012: Gidday
The winner of last week's competition about a dog breed, the Huntaway, was won by Reverend Gary Clover from Stoke, Nelson. [more]

20/04/2012: Karate Keen Farmer Scores Japanese Deal
Tony and Rebecca Clarke, of Closeburn Station, near Ranfurly in Otago's Maniototo district, have sent their first shipment of merino wool to a Japanese corporate-wear manufacturer and retailer, Konaka Co. The ultra-fine 15-micron wool they are supplying will be used to replace cashmere in a new range of winter garments. The deal came about because of Tony's mad keen interest in karate. [more]

20/04/2012: Military Madness
Malcolm Lumsden is mad about old military vehicles and restoring vintage tractors. He has sheds full of vehicles and parts on his north Waikato farm. [more]

20/04/2012: While there's tea, there's hope
The Purangi Estate Winery in Coromandel is well known for its unique fruit wines and liqueurs. Owner Robert Evans has also started a Research and Development program in order to create a database on the propagation, cultivation and manufacture of teas and coffee in New Zealand. [more]

27/04/2012: The World is your Oyster
Anne and John Louden run the Coromandel Oyster Company that's been growing oysters for over 20 years in the pristine waters of the Coromandel. [more]

27/04/2012: Gidday & Regional Wrap
Much of the North Island has seen a little rain - but more would be welcome. In the South the Indian summer continues and grape harvesting's in full swing. [more]

27/04/2012: The Borthwick Family
Paddy Borthwick carries the surname once synonymous with the meat industry in New Zealand. His grandfather Pat ran the New Zealand arm of the meat processing company as well as buying a sheep and beef property near Masterton in 1932. These days Paddy oversees the farm, with its angus stud, as well as running his own Borthwick Estate vineyard, producing wine mainly for export. [more]

04/05/2012: Gidday and Regional Wrap
Frosts are tickling the North and South Islands but it's been a cracker autumn, and in the South fruit picking is all but over. [more]

04/05/2012: Cock and Bull Stories - Tales from Two Kiwi Country Vets
Marlborough vet Peter Jerram features in this story, 'Of Roofs and Fingers'. [more]

04/05/2012: Waikato Ballance Farm Environment Award Winners
Vikki and Chris Nicholson and his parents John and Claire, are the winners of this year's Waikato Farm Environment Supreme Award. It's the first time cropping farmers in a predominantly dairy region have taken the top award. [more]

04/05/2012: From Hahei to Harrods
On a headland between Hahei and Cooks Beach is the Cathedral Cove Macadamia orchard owned by Brian and Sue Pilkington, who grow and market high quality macadamia based products, with a focus on sustainability and organic production. [more]

11/05/2012: Gidday and Guest - Latitude 24' North
Teena Borek is a vegetable grower from Florida. [more]

11/05/2012: Regional Wrap
Welcome, warm rain has fallen in parts of the North Island spurring along grass and vegetable growth. In the South, tail-end lambs have been going to the works at good weights. [more]

11/05/2012: Fruit of Paradise
Whitianga farmers Graham and Selma Morcom run a conventional beef farm but have chosen to go organic on their commercial avocado orchard. [more]

11/05/2012: Gumboot Pirouette
Jewel Dell is a former dancer who became a farmer's wife almost 60 years ago. She's still farming land that has been in her husband's family for 100 years. [more]

18/05/2012: Gidday & Guest
Murray Jamieson from Okaihau [more]

18/05/2012: Regional Wrap
Around the land in the North Island there's been rain rain and more rain....While over on the mainland a cool snap this week has slowed pasture growth. [more]

18/05/2012: Gorgeous Grapes
Jan and Andy Lusty grow muscat italia - thought by many to be the finest tabel grape in the world. [more]

18/05/2012: Tohunga whakairo
Winiata Harrison, an 81-year-old Coromandel master carver and kaumatua chats with Cosmo Kentish-Barnes about his life and work from his carving house on the families Harataunga farm. [more]

25/05/2012: Gidday & Regional Wrap
Frosts are tickling the North and South Islands but it's been a cracker autumn, and North Island dairy farmers are going into winter with good pasture covers, in the South fruit picking is all but over. [more]

25/05/2012: Cock and Bull Stories - Tales from Two Kiwi Country Vets
This story by Marlborough vet Peter Jerram is called 'Trusting Friendships'. [more]

25/05/2012: The opening split
The North Canterbury Ploughing Association hosts a tractor and horse match on Maurice Winter's North Eyre Road Farm. [more]

25/05/2012: Creme de la Creme
Two weeks ago 700 people gathered for a gala dinner at Sky City in Auckland, celebrating the success of 36 finalists in the NZ Dairy Industry Awards. The competition gave away over $140,000 worth of prizes, and by the end of the night the Sharemilker/Equity Farmer, Farm Manager and Dairy Farm Trainee of the Year were announced. [more]

01/06/2012: Gidday & Guest
Lindsay Wilson has been to all 31 Brass Monkey Motorcycle Rallies in Central Otago. The annual event is held every Queen's Birthday weekend near the Ida Dam. To keep things interesting he modifies bikes to take along, entering them in the rideable arts competition. [more]

01/06/2012: Regional Wrap
The North Island has had a frosty week while in the South Island rams have been busy on high country farms. [more]

01/06/2012: Basecamp Salami
Twenty years ago Bill Hensely, an experienced deer and pig hunter, possum trapper and eeler started making salamis. He began selling through craft shows, then he got into Farmers' Markets and other small outlets and now he also butchers game meat from hunters, turning it into salami, chorizo and bier sticks. [more]

01/06/2012: Happy Valley
Jeanette Fitzsimons is enjoying life after politics with husband Harry Parkes on their small farm up the Kauaeranga Valley near Thames. Across the Kauaeranga River, their neighbours Eric and Nancy Zwaan run a community orientated organic farm. [more]

08/06/2012: Gidday & Guest
The day after the big snowfall in Oxford, North Canterbury with local residents Russell Clark and Kyla Kuzniarski. [more]

08/06/2012: Regional Wrap
The North Island didn't get the storms that were predicted earlier in the week, but it has turned bleak and generally colder. In the South Island, Canterbury is sitting under a blanket of snow. [more]

08/06/2012: The Whip Man
Geraldine based whip maker Peter Jack, more commonly known to high country farmers as "The whip man", has been making stock whips, bull whips and snake whips for 26 years. [more]

08/06/2012: Southern Belle
Frans and Tineke De Jong had never tasted a feijoa before they came to New Zealand 9 years ago. Now they're the largest exporters of feijoas in the country. They also grow peppers and chillies. [more]

15/06/2012: Gidday & Guest
Jon Calder has been the CEO of National Fieldays Society for five months. How's it all going? [more]

15/06/2012: Regional Wrap
A number of farmers from around the country tell us how it is on their piece of dirt and also what's on their mind. [more]

15/06/2012: Agribusiness Outlook for Agriculture
Paul Stocks Deputy Director General of the Ministry for Primary Industries summarises the various agricultural sectors. [more]

15/06/2012: Emerald Isle Enterprise
A strong contingent of Irish agricultural equipment firms were at the National Fieldays this year. They talk about their wares. [more]

15/06/2012: From Paddock to Packet
Fallgate Farm on the upper banks of the Orari River in South Canterbury is the home of Heartland Potato Chips and the brainchild of potato grower Raymond Bowan. [more]

22/06/2012: Gidday & Guest
Kate Addis from Geraldine based Addmore Elderflower beverages. [more]

22/06/2012: Regional Wrap
Around the country things have warmed up in the North Island and in the South, Otago's sitting pretty with a colossal amount of feed on hand. [more]

22/06/2012: Luxury Leather
Timaru based New Zealand Light Leathers supply spongy deerskin to some of the world's top fashion houses who use it for making garments, gloves and handbags. [more]

22/06/2012: Sheep Farmer to Snow Farmer
In 1970 when the school bus and postal service were being axed from Cardrona Valley near Wanaka, visionary farmer John Lee bulldozed tracks on his farm and started the Cardrona Ski Field. People moved in, the services stayed. He and wife Mary went on to develop a Proving Ground for testing products in sub zero temperatures, a cross country ski field and a skate board park for snow boarders. They also have consent to build a gondola from the valley floor up to a proposed new ski field, Roaring Meg. [more]

29/06/2012: Gidday and Guest
Tim Hauber from the Bahamas talks about growing vegetables in a hothouse. [more]

29/06/2012: Regional Wrap
Around the North Island ewe scanning results are generally 10 to 20% up on last year, but last season wasn't flash. On the mainland it's been pretty miserable weather for feeding out in Southland. [more]

29/06/2012: Summerfruit Orchards Central Otago
This Central Otago business produces up to 10% of New Zealand's export cherries and 15 to 20% of the export apricots. The products are world class and general manager Ian Nicholl says they need to promote that fact more loudly. [more]

29/06/2012: Out of the Woodwork
Bob Lynn established the Lynn Museum of Woodworking and Ornamental Turning Lathes and Tools in Tinwald, South Canterbury. Highlights of the collection are eleven lathes dating from 1804, including six Holtzapffel. [more]

06/07/2012: Intro & Regional Wrap
Around the North Island it was wet and cold earlier on, but warmed up by the week's end, however spud growers near Mt Ruapehu haven't been able to harvest because the ground's stayed frozen all day. In the South Island Ewe scanning's underway despite some freezing conditions. [more]

06/07/2012: The First Lady of Herefords
Jan Wills is the secretary general of the World Hereford Council. Recently she's been promoting the breed in Uzbekistan and Turkey. When she's not traveling, Jan spends many hours every day on the computer at home in Matamata answering queries about the distinctive red cattle. [more]

06/07/2012: The Fernside Fancier
Poultry breeder and A&P show judge Murray Harneiss has a particular interest in Old English Game Fowl. [more]

06/07/2012: Geordie Hill Station Childhood Memories
Two sisters, Sheila and Marge, grew up on a high country station up the Lindis Pass in the late 40's and 50's. They reminisce about rural life, which included spending three days riding horses to boarding school after the summer holidays, and riding back home again in December. [more]

13/07/2012: Intro & Guest
Bob Cook runs Ranfurly Orchard Services in Te Puke. His business has taken a hit since the arrival of PSA. [more]

13/07/2012: Regional Wrap
Ripper frosts have chilled the North Island and in the south, farmers are gearing up for lambing and calving. [more]

13/07/2012: Steak of Origin
Te Atarangi Angus was named the producer of the decade at the Steak of Origin celebration of beef earlier this year. Chris and Karren Biddles own and farm Te Atarangi - a 1000 hectare farm on Northland's Pouto Peninsula. [more]

13/07/2012: A Good Yarn
Beverley Forrester owns and runs Blackhills Farm in Hawarden, North Canterbury. She breeds black and natural coloured sheep and produces wool that's spun into premium grade yarn, that's sold along with her own designer knitwear in her Blackhills showroom in England. [more]

20/07/2012: Intro and Guest
One of the five winners of the "Take a Stand for Good Sorts in Rural Schools" campaign, Waituna West School Glen Richardson talks about what he does to get the title. [more]

20/07/2012: Regional Wrap
The North Island had a very wet start to the week, but luckily was drying out as the week ended, while in the South Island the mercury has crept up and calving has started. [more]

20/07/2012: Kidding Around
Andrea and Mike Gauland are living the rural dream on their 10 acre block near Oxford. They have chickens, ducks, turkeys, pigs and a large herd of Toggenburg goats [more]

20/07/2012: Cardrona Merino
After years of poor meat and wool returns, Cardrona Valley farmer Ben Gordon decided to throw a carcass over his shoulder, remove the middleman, and sell his delicate merino lamb direct to chefs. After a lot of hard graft and early on speed wobbles, Cardrona Merino is now performing well. [more]

27/07/2012: Intro and Regional Wrap
Much of the North Island is sodden. In the South Island lambs are starting to appear in the early flocks. [more]

27/07/2012: Sheep Heaven - 22. Third lambing season
The flock of sheep Country Life is running on a lifestyle block is about to start its third lambing season. The flock's named after the Magic netball team and they were mated to a texel ram. Next season, in an effort to increase meat production, a polled dorset ram will enter the mix. [more]

27/07/2012: Deals on Wheels
Peter Martin is a Waikato farmer and paralympian. He's at the national agricultural fieldays seeing how easy it is to get around. [more]

27/07/2012: Black Diamonds
Stephan Jamieson is the coal face manager at the Birchfield Coal Mines Rotokohu measures in the Giles Creek basin near Reefton. His uncle, Gary Birchfield, is a director of the family owned mining company that began production at the Rotokohu site in 1984, and is processing coal at a rate of about 500,000 tonnes per annum. [more]

03/08/2012: Intro and Guest
Australian farmer Bob Mackley is in New Zealand to warn farmers about the risks of GE crops. [more]

03/08/2012: Regional Wrap
In both the North and South Island it's been wet, wet, wet. But there is grass growth in many areas because it's been relatively mild. [more]

03/08/2012: Agri news
A brief selection of rural news from the past week. [more]

03/08/2012: Arnie's Girls
Your host at Blackball's Club Hotel is Arnie Jansen who also has a flock of sheep that regularly follow him down the road in order reach paddocks on the other side of town. [more]

03/08/2012: Whangarei Growers' Market
The Whangarei Growers' market is the largest and oldest market of its kind in New Zealand. It was started by two growers 15 years ago who were sick of the supermarket chains squeezing returns. The market does absolutely no advertising yet thousands of shoppers turn up as early as 5.30 each Saturday morning to get their supplies for the week. [more]

10/08/2012: Intro and Guest
The New South Wales Farmers' Association vice-president Peter Darely says Australia's horticulture industry is in danger of disappearing. [more]

10/08/2012: Regional Wrap
Rain in the North Island and on the mainland the sun is out and lambs are starting to come out too. [more]

10/08/2012: Agri news
Agricultural news. [more]

10/08/2012: The Kumara Box
Warren (a.k.a. Ernie) and Mavis Suckling have put the kumara on the tourist map. [more]

10/08/2012: Moonlight Kiwi
The Paparoa Wildlife Trust is a conservation initiative to establish and maintain effective recovery programmes for Great Spotted Kiwi/Roroa in the South Paparoa Range near Greymouth. Trust volunteers Jo Halley and Trevor Johnston are in a 13 hectare predator free enclosure near Moonlight, to check and weigh a young bird that has a radio tracking device attached to its leg. [more]

17/08/2012: Intro and Regional Wrap
The extremely wet ground conditions are continuing to make dairy farmers' lives very stressful and in the South Island constant rain in South Canterbury is turning paddocks to mud. [more]

17/08/2012: Guest
Harry Lowe runs the New Zealand Bio Grains mill in Ashburton, Mid Canterbury. [more]

17/08/2012: Agri news
A selection of primary industry stories from throughout the week. [more]

17/08/2012: Robin's Angels
The Grey Valley Senior Citizens Choir led by musical director Ellen Moreton, prepare for a concert at the Blackball Workingman's Club. [more]

17/08/2012: Accidental Chicken Farmers
Dan and Lesley Love arrived from Britain in January 2009. These former police officers have settled in Omakau and are aiming to make their lifestyle block financially viable by running various ventures including chicken rearing, egg production, beef cattle and agricultural work for neighbours. Dan also has a collection of Land Rovers. [more]

24/08/2012: Intro & Regional Wrap
The sun has shown its face in the North Island and on the east coast of the South Island conditions are muddy underfoot. [more]

24/08/2012: Guest
Karapiro Kiwifruit grower Tim Oliver responds to the news PSA has been found in Waikato. [more]

24/08/2012: Agri news
A selection of primary industry stories from throughout the week. [more]

24/08/2012: Lake Farm Beef
Colin Brown runs Lake Farm Beef from his picturesque property over looking Lake Karapiro. He breeds and raises angus and angus piedmontese cross cattle to sell directly to consumers, a farm to plate business. He says his beef hit three tennets of tender, tasty and healthy, and he aims to raise the best beef in the world and show case that process to other NZ farmers. [more]

24/08/2012: Westland - The Milky Way
The Westland Cooperative Dairy Company was formed 75 years ago and is 100 percent dairy farmer owned by about 330 shareholders from Karamea to Fox Glacier. [more]

31/08/2012: Intro & Guest
Dr Stephanie Palmer believes local residents could be marginalised if a sub-division gets the goes ahead in Kennedy Bay, on north eastern coast of Coromandel Peninsula. [more]

31/08/2012: Regional Wrap
Sun at last in the North Island and in the South, the ground is finally starting to dry out. [more]

31/08/2012: Kowhitirangi Forever
Warren Diedrichs has spent most of his life farming up the Kowhitirangi Valley near Hokitika. [more]

31/08/2012: Baritone and Breeder of Belgian Blues
When he's not sitting in the Speaker's chair, Dr Lockwood Smith is, if he can possibly make it, at home on his farm near Ruawai in Northland. He is one of just a few breeders of the impressive and meaty Belgian Blue in New Zealand and knows each of his cows by sight. [more]

07/09/2012: Intro & Regional Wrap
The North Island has had a mixed bag of heavy showers, wind and sunshine and in the South Island lambing is in full swing. [more]

07/09/2012: Agri news
A selection of primary industry stories from throughout the week. [more]

07/09/2012: Guest
Anton "The Chicken Boy" Cooper from Central Otago. [more]

07/09/2012: Postman Pat on the Back award winner
Diane Howe delivers the mail to 500 rural customers near Hokitika. [more]

07/09/2012: History on Hakatere
The Hakatere Station in the foothills of the Alps in Mid-Canterbury is now part of the Hakatere Conservation Park and managed by the Department of Conservation. It was once considered to be good sheep country but when farming on the land ceased, the Station's buildings fell into disrepair. Now thanks to the Hakatere Heritage Committee the buildings, which include shearer's quarters and a historic cottage, are slowly being restored back to their former glory. [more]

14/09/2012: Intro & Regional Wrap
Frosts in the North Island have pinged potatotoes and asparagus crops, while in the South Island despite snow and rain earlier in the week, stock have fared okay. [more]

14/09/2012: Guest
Adrian Rigby from Watties talks about asparagus. [more]

14/09/2012: Agri news
A selection of primary industry stories from throughout the week. [more]

14/09/2012: Black Hills Farm Cob Cottage
Cosmo Kentish-Barnes visits Beverley Forrester in North Canterbury and checks out a cob cottage that her husband's great great grandparents lived in during the 1890's. [more]

14/09/2012: Closeburn Station
Closeburn Station which over looks Lake Wakatipu, was one of the first properties to undergo Tenure Review, allowing the three developer owners to sell building platforms on the station. It now has 27 exclusive house sites primarily owned by overseas owners, but Farm manager Grant McMasters says the residential development's been good for the farm, Queenstown businesses and the community. [more]

21/09/2012: Intro and Regional Wrap
The North and South Islands have both had kinder weeks weatherwise, letting farmers get out and do activities that have been delayed recently. [more]

21/09/2012: Agri news
A selection of primary industry stories from throughout the week. [more]

21/09/2012: Sons of the Soil
Sons of the Soil is a book looking at the social history of Chinese market gardeners in New Zealand. With Ruth Lam and Howe Young. [more]

21/09/2012: Sons of the Soil
Sons of the Soil is a book looking at the social history of Chinese market gardeners in New Zealand. With Ruth Lam and Howe Young. [more]

21/09/2012: Langford Store
Sukhita Langford is the fourth generation in her family to run the amazing little historic shop in the town of Bainham, Golden Bay. [more]

28/09/2012: Intro & Regional Wrap
Grass growth is a little slow in the North Island and stock are on top of it in many places, in the South Island.In the South Island arable farmers are in clover. [more]

28/09/2012: Agri news
A selection of primary industry stories from throughout the week. [more]

28/09/2012: Guest
Wool entrepreneur Polly McGuckin is importing coffins from Yorkshire. [more]

28/09/2012: Slicing Salami
West Coast butcher Phil Russ is meating his goals at the Blackball Salami Company. [more]

28/09/2012: Growing with PSA
Now that spring is here more and more kiwifruit orchardists are finding the vine killing disease PSA on their orchards. What do you do when your orchard tests PSA positive? [more]

05/10/2012: Intro & Regional Wrap
In the North Island intermittent rain showers have been interrupting docking, while in the South farmers have been busy preparing ground for winter feed crops. [more]

05/10/2012: Guest
John Clark of Woodhaven Gardens in Horowhenua. [more]

05/10/2012: Agri News
A selection of primary industry stories from throughout the week. [more]

05/10/2012: Flying the Family Flag
Hal Harding's family has been working the land near Dargaville since 1877. His farm is now one of half a dozen flagship farms for the Kaipara Harbour Restoration Group. [more]

05/10/2012: Flying the Family Flag
Hal Harding's family has been working the land near Dargaville since 1877. His farm is now one of half a dozen flagship farms for the Kaipara Harbour Restoration Group. [more]

05/10/2012: Back on Track
Dan and Mandy Shand farm sheep and beef on a high country station near Culverdon. They also have a beekeeping business and run the Hurunui High Country Track that winds its way through their scenic property. [more]

12/10/2012: Intro and Regional Wrap
In the North Island, Hawkes Bay's apple orchards are in full bloom. On the mainland tailing's all but finished in coastal areas while hill farmers are well into lambing. [more]

12/10/2012: Barry Hanna
Barry Hanna of Cheviot Transport. [more]

12/10/2012: Agri news
A selection of primary industry stories from throughout the week. [more]

12/10/2012: Swiss Bliss
The dream of a building a new life in the country became a reality for Urs and Ursula Fricker, who came to New Zealand from Switzerland with their 3 children and settled on a lifestyle block in Waikari, North Canterbury. [more]

12/10/2012: Tomorrow's Farms Today
Colin Guyton has a dairy farm in Reporoa. He's one of 25 farmers taking part in a three year project Called Tomorrow's Farms Today where they're aiming for minimal environmental footprints with optimal farming systems. Headlands Consultancy Alison Dewes is overseeing the project. [more]

19/10/2012: Intro & Regional Wrap
High winds have battered the North Island and in the South, it's been raining cats and dogs. [more]

19/10/2012: Guest
Tim Aitken and Lucy Robertshawe have just won a major international award given out by the British food and clothing retailer, Marks and Spencer. [more]

19/10/2012: Agri News
A selection of primary industry stories from throughout the week. [more]

19/10/2012: FarmCare Produces Super Tender Lamb
After years of fine tuning and investment a group of farmers are now getting paid a premium for their super tender lamb in a European market. The secret is in what happens in a lamb's final hours on farm. The on farm system's come from mixing scientists driving the concept, farmers working out how to do it practically on farm, and a marketer selling the picture that backs up the product. [more]

19/10/2012: Planting Evidence
Many of the plants in Jamie McFadden's Hurunui Native Plant Nursery in Cheviot are grown from seeds collected in the North Canterbury area. The hardy plants are used by Jamie and his team to help restore streams and waterways on dairy and sheep farms in the area. [more]

26/10/2012: Intro & Regional Wrap
The buzz of top dressing planes can be heard in parts of the North Island and in the South, windmills have been whirring and helicopters hovering over frost prone crops. [more]

26/10/2012: Guest
Greg Buck from Premier Orchards in Hope, Nelson. [more]

26/10/2012: On a Saturday Night
Sara Newman talks about a new book she has co-written with Michelle Frey about the community halls of small town New Zealand. [more]

26/10/2012: The Stone Walls of Whangarei District
The Whangarei area has an estimated 1500 kilometres of dry stone walls. Some were built as early as the 1860's. Fred and Jim Osborne build and maintain walls, Catherine Ballard has written a book about them and Les Donaldson farms with them. [more]

02/11/2012: Intro & Regional Wrap
The East Coast of the North Island is drying out and farmers are quitting stock. [more]

02/11/2012: Jenny Roper
Jenny Roper from Wairoa museum talking about the latest exhibition Wool in Wairoa. [more]

02/11/2012: Sustainability 101
Waikato University management students visit a Tirau farm to hear about the practicalities of sustainable farming. [more]

02/11/2012: Under the Mountain
84-year-old Paul Bush takes Cosmo Kentish-Barnes to the top Mount Parnassus that rises above family farm now run by his son David, who is busy tailing a flock of Romney lambs down by the Waiau River. [more]

09/11/2012: Intro and Guest
Janette Eason-Savage talks about the world wide Campaign for Wool. Prince Charles is patron and he's in New Zealand this weekend. [more]

09/11/2012: Regional Wrap
The East Coast of the North Island could do with a bit of moisture to kick-start pasture growth, while in the South a cold snap has caused major damage to vineyards in Central Otago. [more]

09/11/2012: Beautiful Grapes
Fin Grieve has grapes on his mind, so it's fortunate he's the vineyard manager at the Mt Beautiful Vineyard near Cheviot. [more]

09/11/2012: Nikau Caves
Forced to look for new ways to make their North Waikato sheep and beef property pay, Philip and Anne Woodward started hosting people through a kilometre long limestone cave on their farm 17 years ago. Four years ago they added a cafe, and despite being a good drive off SH 1, the business is humming. Daughters Emily and Catherine and their husbands also work in the enterprise. [more]

16/11/2012: Intro & Regional Wrap
Growth is slow and late in both the North and South Islands after a less than ideal October. [more]

16/11/2012: Agri news
A selection of primary industry stories from throughout the week. [more]

16/11/2012: Tara Tamarillos and Forgotten Fruits
Liz Holsted left the corporate life of Auckland behind 8 years ago and found a dormant passion for growing things. Her Mangawhai property has 1000 tamarillo trees which are sold locally and turned into a range of preserves, pickles and vinegars. Benji Woodman also grows heritage fruit trees on the Tara property. [more]

16/11/2012: Keeping it Green
Rob Macbeth is the driving force behind a private irrigation scheme near Cheviot in North Canterbury that draws water from the Waiau River for five farms located a few kilometres from the intake. [more]

23/11/2012: Intro and Regional Wrap
The North Island is dry and farmers are weaning lambs early and at lighter weights, while in the South Island the first draft of lambs are going to the works. [more]

23/11/2012: Guest
Nuffield New Zealand Director, Richard Green. [more]

23/11/2012: Agrinews
A selection of agricultural news from the week. [more]

23/11/2012: Rare Breeds
Willowbank Farm provides facilities away from Willowbank Wildlife Reserve in Christchurch for the establishment of breeding programmes in a more private and relaxed environment. With Michael Willis and Sue Meager. [more]

23/11/2012: Taranaki Settler Griffith Williams
In 1962, Taranaki settler, bush clearer and farmer Griffith Williams was interviewed about his early days in the Province. It was a time prior to the turn of last century, when farms were only starting to be carved out of the bush. [more]

30/11/2012: Intro and Regional Wrap
The North Island is dry and farmers are weaning lambs early and at lighter weights, while in the South Island the first draft of lambs are going to the works. [more]

30/11/2012: Guest
CRV Ambreed sire analyst Kevin Hart and David Smith. [more]

30/11/2012: Agrinews
A selection of agricultural news from the week. For further rural news go to the Radio New Zealand website. [more]

30/11/2012: Matangi Christmas Tree Farm
Ulric Baumberger has three thousand Christmas trees growing on his Matangi property near Hamilton. He, his wife and young twins arrived in New Zealand nearly twenty years ago and he started growing trees nearly straight away. He still gets a real buzz seeing happy faces visiting his property in the yuletide season. [more]

07/12/2012: Intro and Wrap
In the North Island much needed rain fell across most regions while in the South Island cherry picking has started in Marlborough. [more]

07/12/2012: Guest
Natasha King is the recipient of a 2013 Nuffield Farming Scholarship. [more]

07/12/2012: Agrinews
A selection of agricultural news from the week. For further rural news go to the Radio New Zealand website. [more]

07/12/2012: Rams and Ewes
Cheviot farmer Ian Stevenson is a well-known sheep breeder, wool classer and is president of the New Zealand Sheep Breeders Association. [more]

07/12/2012: The Show Must Go On
On November 10th 2012, Waimate North hosted its 170th Pastoral and Industrial Show. Many of the families involved in the first event in 1842 are still in the district and strong supporters of the show. [more]

14/12/2012: Intro and Regional Wrap
The North Island is drying out despite rain a week ago, and in the South Island lambs are heading off farm to get processed. [more]

14/12/2012: Guest
Flatpack Farming CEO, Sophie Green. [more]

14/12/2012: Agrinews
A selection of agricultural news from the week. For further rural news go to the Radio New Zealand website. [more]

14/12/2012: A Miner's Life
The Blackball Museum of Working Class History with Paul Maunder. [more]

14/12/2012: Staglands
Forty years ago John Simister set up a nature reserve near Wellington. It was something he'd wanted to do since childhood and ever since, he's been encouraging people to get up close and personal with nature. [more]

21/12/2012: Rare Earth Jersey Bennes
Nick Webster lives in Oamaru and grows jersey benne potatoes. He reckons they're the king of spuds for Christmas and the region, with its volcanic soils, is famous for them. [more]

21/12/2012: Regional Wrap
Most North Island pastoral farmers desperately want the forecast rain to arrive because it's as dry as mid-January in many areas, while in the South Island farmers are making hay while the sun shines. [more]

21/12/2012: Boutique Akatarawa Sawmilling
There used to be 36 sawmills in Akatarawa Valley, now only one remains. Akatarawa Sawmills has diversified and now supplies logs to Wellington Zoo and film sets and sells firewood to keep the business going. [more]

21/12/2012: When Country Comes To Town
It's the day before the150th Canterbury A&P Show opens and with more than 3,000 animals and 7,000 competitive entries, there is a lot of organising to do to insure preparations are complete before the gates of New Zealand's biggest A&P Show open to the public. [more]

25/01/2013: Supplementary audio: Surprising Potato Subterfuge
Dr Shrikant Jagtap is the Provincial Reconstruction Team advisor with the Department of State. He talks to Marianne Elliott about the importance of branding potatoes. [more]

25/01/2013: Intro and Regional Wrap
Many North Island regions are drying out quickly with high temperatures and wind, although a few lucky ones, especially in the lower part of the Island received rain last week. In the South Island most places have had a reasonable drop of rain this month. In between the moisture farmers are making baleage and hay. [more]

25/01/2013: Guest Neil Stott
North Canterbury Federated Farmers President. [more]

25/01/2013: Agrinews
A selection of rural stories from the week. For more in depth rural stories go to Radio New Zealand news. [more]

25/01/2013: Healing Horses
Nick Van der Sande runs a Clydsdale horse team in the small Waikato town of Pirongia. He has also started practising the Bowen technique which involves healing horses through gentle, hands on therapy. [more]

25/01/2013: Tractors in Afghanistan
Marianne Elliott is a human rights lawyer who worked for the United Nations in Afghanistan from 2005 to 2007 and has written a book, Zen Under Fire, about her experiences there. Last year she returned and visited a New Zealand Aid funded Agricultural Support Programme which is introducing mechanization to farmers in Bamyan province. She talks to Angus Davidson from Prime Consulting who is implementing the programme and visits a collective farm. [more]

01/02/2013: Intro and Guest
Jeff Atkinson grows sugar cane in Queensland. His farm is under 5 metres of water. [more]

01/02/2013: Regional Wrap
Much of the North Island seems to have turned brown overnight… but in Southland animals are thriving with the abundance of feed. [more]

01/02/2013: Agrinews
A selection of agricultural news from the week. For further rural news go to the Radio New Zealand website. [more]

01/02/2013: Dealing with Depression
Hawkes Bay Farmer David Hunt describes how living with depression has impacted on his life and farming operation. [more]

01/02/2013: Goat People
Terrance and Lyn Windle are passionate about Boer Goats. They sell stud animals to other breeders and surplus finished goats are sold to Christchurch's ethnic community. [more]

08/02/2013: Intro and Regional Wrap
Some rain has fallen in the North Island but more is needed.The pear harvest is about to start at the top of the South. [more]

08/02/2013: Guest
Fish & Game's South Island communications advisor, Andrew Currie, [more]

08/02/2013: Wool Matters
The farmer-owned company Wools of New Zealand is asking strong wool growers to buy shares to allow it to build supply-chains and develop marketing opportunities. With Chairman and Banks Peninsula sheep farmer Mark Shadbolt. [more]

08/02/2013: The Farm Northland
Northland couple Ellen and Mike Bennett have turned their 400 hectare working dairy farm at Whangaruru near Russell into the equivalent of an "open house". Backpackers, Woofers, kiwi holiday makers and more recently school groups, have been experiencing what life on a farm is all about. They also run holiday programmes: the Mean As Boys Camp and Sweet As Girls Camp. [more]

15/02/2013: Intro and Regional Wrap
The dry conditions continue to bite. [more]

15/02/2013: Guest
Doug Brooks is a director of Te Rua o Te Moko which oversees five blocks of Maori land in South Taranaki. In collaboration with the Landbased Training Centre they're running a course on the land to help young Maori take up farming as a career. [more]

15/02/2013: Agrinews
Announcements about Biodiesel [more]

15/02/2013: Musical Magic
Bevan Galbraith from Te Pahu, a small settlement near Waikato's Mount Pirongia, makes ukuleles from a wide range of native timbers and he reckons it's the best wood in the world to use for his instruments. [more]

15/02/2013: Yealands Estate
Great winemaking goes hand in hand with eco-friendly grape growing for entrepreneur Peter Yealands, whose goal is to make his Marlborough based Yealands Estate Vineyard the most environmentally sustainable in the world. [more]

22/02/2013: Just the Usual Farm Day
A farmer talks about a memorable day saving a hen from a drum of molasses, courtesy of the New Zealand Sound Archives. [more]

22/02/2013: Intro and Weather Wrap
The North Island continues in its parched state, while in the South Island, Southland is a green oasis. [more]

22/02/2013: Hot Ice - It's No Skating Rink Story
When the drought finally breaks farmers are being warned not to drive down hillsides which they've casually been going up and down for months, because the hard earth pan with extra moisture becomes like ice and brakes don't grip. [more]

22/02/2013: Time for Tea
Zealong Tea is New Zealand's only tea producer. Country Life re-visits the Waikato tea plantation after almost five years in production to find out who is drinking our tea. [more]

22/02/2013: Bluebank Blueberries
Neil Charlton spends most of his time travelling the world . He's been home for summer though, looking after his friends blueberry patch. [more]

01/03/2013: Intro and Guest
Howe Young has been growing vegetables for 50 years in Pukekohe and he's never seen it so dry. [more]

01/03/2013: Regional Wrap
The North Island continues in its parched state and the South Island is not too far behind. [more]

01/03/2013: Soap Box with Richard Steele
This King Country farmer and board member of the Ruapehu Wanganui Rural Support Trust says sheep and beef farmers are sick of being blamed for not making money, and being told to improve their on-farm performance when the problem is between the farm gate and the consumer. [more]

01/03/2013: Propagating Strawberries
Nearly all of New Zealand's strawberry plants are grown in Katikati before heading out to commercial growers. Keith Taylor's family has been propagating stawberries there for almost 60 years. [more]

01/03/2013: When a Cow is in Clover...'s as good as it gets for a cow. David and Joanna Grigg's farm straddles the hills between the Awatere and Wairau Valleys in Marlborough and is part of a Lincoln University project driven by Professor Derrick Moot, that investigates strategies for dryland livestock farmers to drought proof their farming systems using different species of legumes. Cath Goulter's dryland farming blog [more]

08/03/2013: Intro and Guest
North Waikato sheep and beef farmer, Steve Stark. [more]

08/03/2013: Regional Wrap
North and South Island farmers are struggling to cope with the extremely dry conditions. [more]

08/03/2013: Lovebirds
Terry and Belinda Clancy have built a bird sanctuary on their Kaituna Valley property on Banks Peninsula where they provide respite care for old, unwanted or injured birds. [more]

08/03/2013: Blue Duck Station - Whakahoro Whanganui River
A sheep and beef farm, a tourist destination and conservation work all combine to become a good money earner for the farm owners. Six thousand tourists, many from overseas, stay on the isolated farm each year, and the Stray Bus visits about five times a week over summer. Backpackers take a break in their travels to work as volunteers on conservation projects, and like Hotel California, many find they can check out any time they want, but they can never leave. [more]

15/03/2013: Intro and Guest
Jennifer Boggiss from Heilala Vanilla in Tauranga. [more]

15/03/2013: Regional Wrap
The whole of the North Island is now officially in drought, while in the South the ground is too hard for direct drilling. [more]

15/03/2013: Nevalea Alpacas
King Country sheep and beef farmers Neville and Leonie Walker are enjoying their alpacas so much they're becoming a viable diversification for their business. From their now converted woolshed they sell passing tourists quality alpaca knitwear, designed by Leonie. Despite little advertising, they're hard pressed to keep up with demand. [more]

15/03/2013: Urban Bees and Sunny Sunbeam
Picton bee keepers Matthew Wells and Catherine Gordon lease beehives to people who want greater returns from their fruit trees and vegetables. A few kilometres away retired car mechanic Sunny Sunbeam has built an energy efficient house from re-used materials on a hilltop block overlooking Blenheim. [more]

22/03/2013: Intro and Guest
Marlborough Environmental Awards co-ordinator, Nicky Eade. [more]

22/03/2013: Regional Wrap
Glorious rain has fallen in the North Island while in the South Island grape harvesting's in full swing. [more]

22/03/2013: Windsong Orchard
Bob and Jennie Crum are founding members of the Marlborough Farmers' Market and grow over twenty varieties of plums on their organic orchard in Renwick. [more]

22/03/2013: Forgotten World Adventures
Waikato farmer, former regional councillor and entrepreneur Ian Blame has set up a tourism venture that uses a de-commissioned railway line to take people through the hidden valleys of southern King Country and eastern Taranaki. [more]

29/03/2013: Intro and Guest
A Wanganui optometry company is supporting Red Puppy Appeal by opening its doors to cats, dogs, maybe even sheep and horses, and testing them for cataracts. Optometrists will do the tests on Saturday April 6th, in return for a gold coin donation to help train guide dogs for the blind. [more]

29/03/2013: Regional Wrap
The drought is hitting home on the East Coast of the North Island while conditions for grape harvesting in the South Island have been perfect. [more]

29/03/2013: Tokirima Treasure
Jack and Rosemary Corbett have been digging for treasures throughout the New Zealand countryside. [more]

29/03/2013: Immigrant Farm Workers
Stella Sales came to Culverdon from the Philippines three years ago to take up a dairy herd position but her employer, farmer Sharon Davie-Martin, quickly realised that there was a significant knowledge gap between them. As a result Sharon has co-produced an educational information pack for farmers and immigrant workers new to the area. [more]

05/04/2013: Intro and Regional Wrap
The North Island is not out of the drought but things are looking more comfortable following smatterings of rain, while in the South grapes are being harvested while the sun shines. [more]

05/04/2013: Guest
Martin Tinkner from the Southern Seed Exchange. [more]

05/04/2013: Agrinews
A selection of agricultural news from the week. For further rural news go to the Radio New Zealand website. [more]

05/04/2013: A Fowl Business
After being made redundant a few years ago, Greg Boyle started making chicken coops and selling them in a package with chooks, feeders and food. Since then the Banks Peninsula business, now called Chook Manor, is flying and orders are coming in from around the country. [more]

05/04/2013: Central Plateau A Year Round Playground
For many Kiwis and international visitors, the Ruapehu region has been primarily known for its winter playground appeal, but now with canoeing, kayaking and jet boating trips down the Whanganui River and a clutch of cycle ways, including the Mountain to Sea journey, the region's picking up tourists year round. [more]

12/04/2013: Intro and Regional Wrap
The North Island is desperately waiting for the forecast rain to arrive in the next couple of days while in the South Island there's a backlog of lambs waiting to go to the works. [more]

12/04/2013: Guest
Rion Belfield has just held the 60th consecutive annual Jersey dairy stud sale on his property. [more]

12/04/2013: Agrinews
A selection of agricultural news from the week. For further rural news go to the Radio New Zealand website. [more]

12/04/2013: Burtergill Stud
Arnold Van Asch has been breeding South Devon cattle on his farm up the Awatere Valley for over 35 years. [more]

12/04/2013: Sheep Heaven - 23. Regrassing
The persistence of the pasture at Sheep Heaven, the lifestyle block sheep farm, isn't great so regrassing is the name of the game. [more]

12/04/2013: Sleeping in Silos
Traditionally grain silos are found in the country filled with feed, however designer Stuart Wright-Stow's 'Silo Stay idea in Little River is going against the grain. [more]

19/04/2013: Intro and Guest
"Down the Back Paddock" child safety programme organiser, Kerry Miles. [more]

19/04/2013: Regional Wrap
There has been good rain over much of the North Island, but some severely hit drought zones are still waiting for relief. In the South there's a backlog of lambs waiting to go to the freezing works. [more]

19/04/2013: Hablando de la Leche
Chilean sharemilker's Marcello Serrano and Carolina Burgos have come a long way since they began working on a dairy farm in North Canterbury in 2003. [more]

19/04/2013: Dendrologists John and Bunny Mortimer
Bunny and John Mortimer farmed for many years on the outskirts of Hamilton and, following years of gathering seeds in New Zealand and overseas and planting them, they gifted the arboretum they nurtured to the city. [more]

26/04/2013: Intro and Guest
Matt Russell from Massey University on the reasons farmers subdivide. [more]

26/04/2013: Regional Wrap
Rain has at last fallen in good quantities in many places, although it's still terribly dry around Taihape and in parts of Hawkes Bay. [more]

26/04/2013: National Firefighters Competition
From all over the country, firefighters, some paid, some volunteers, have taken part in the United Fire Brigades Associations' Combat Challenge. Some say it's the toughest two minutes in sport. [more]

26/04/2013: Wairarapa Eco Farms
Frank van Steensel and Josje Neerincx run Wairarapa Eco Farms. It's an organic fruit and vegetable produce scheme for those who like eating seasonally and don't mind if broccoli or carrots aren't always in the shopping basket. Customers buy shares in the scheme and in return get their weekly bag of goodies. Deliveries are made to the Wellington region once a week. [more]

03/05/2013: Intro and Guest
Taihape vet Anthony Oswald. [more]

03/05/2013: Regional Wrap
It's been another week of mild temperatures in the North Island, while in the South there's been some welcomed rainfall. [more]

03/05/2013: Iron Man
Retired Oxford farmer Ray Mehrtens collects and restores vintage agricultural machinery from the North Canterbury area. [more]

03/05/2013: Vintage at Sherwood
Sherwood Estate in the Waipara Valley operate their own modern and fully equipped winery where all winemaking tasks are undertaken from crushing and pressing, through to bottling under the careful guidance of senior winemaker, Petter Evans, who takes Cosmo Kentish-Barnes into the belly of the winery to discuss this year's vintage. Owner Jill Sherwood is also on hand to shed some light on Sherwood Estate's history and the challenges of running the business side of things. [more]

10/05/2013: Intro and Guest
Dairy farmer Paul Bourke has just returned from helping install a water system for a remote rural village in Nepal. [more]

10/05/2013: Regional Wrap
Rain and warm temperatures have fueled grass growth across much of the North Isalnd while in the South Island a few more frosts are starting to nip back pasture growth. [more]

10/05/2013: Rural Population Trends and Impacts
Professor Natalie Jackson, director of the National Institute of Demographic and Economic Analysis, Waikato University says central Government seems to focus on population trends in places like Auckland, which means it doesn't have a good handle of dealing with population decline in many rural regions. [more]

10/05/2013: Milmore Downs
Ian Henderson was one of the Biodynamic pioneers in New Zealand agriculture. His farm in Scargill, North Canterbury is Demeter and BioGro certified and produces and sells beef, mutton, whole grains, flour and flakes. It was first certified organic in 1983 and is now managed by Ian's son Matthew. [more]

17/05/2013: Intro and Guest
Ohoka teenager Charlotte Flay has been passionate about breeding dairy cattle for as long as she can remember. [more]

17/05/2013: Regional Wrap
Grass is leaping out of the ground in the North Island while milking is winding up in the South. [more]

17/05/2013: Radar Ready
Graham Thurlow uses a ground penetrating radar to locate wires and water pipes on Otago farms. [more]

17/05/2013: A Chance for Chestnuts
Three North Island chestnut growers have banded together and are exporting their nuts frozen to Japan. They're hoping their venture will help jump-start New Zealand's beleagured chestnut industry. Grant Sharman and John Margetts. [more]

24/05/2013: Sheep Heaven - 24. Plant species for lamb growth
Brett Te Whare discusses plantain and chicory as species to use for lamb growth. [more]

24/05/2013: Intro and Guest
Cam Lewis and promoting career opportunities in agriculture to young Aucklanders. [more]

24/05/2013: Regional Wrap
Pastures are making a steady recovery in the North Island while in the South, dairy herds are starting to make their way on to winter grazing. [more]

24/05/2013: Pacific Pesto
Every week crates of basil are flown in from Fiji and are trucked to Levin. There, they are made into pesto. Genoese Foods is the largest pesto maker in the country, and it all started with a kitchen whiz in the shed of a dairy farm. Ron Parkin and Sean Kerins. [more]

24/05/2013: Grave Matters
The Otepopo cemetery in Herbert, North Otago, is perched atop a windswept hill with sweeping views over the district. Jim Craig, who farms the land around the cemetery and Herbert historian Dorothy McKenzie meet Cosmo Kentish-Barnes at the site to share its history and some of the stories of those who are buried there. [more]

31/05/2013: Intro and Guest
Syd Slee was a leader of the 1978 "Bloody Friday" protest. [more]

31/05/2013: Regional Wrap
A chilly blast has stopped grass growth in its tracks this week in the North Island, while in the South Island snow has fallen but it's impact so far is minimal. [more]

31/05/2013: What a Catch
Stewart Paul looks after the Macraes Flat hatchery that produces thousands of rainbow trout annually for release into "put and take" fisheries throughout Otago. [more]

31/05/2013: Nature's Support Possum Back Belt
Colin Cox lives in Fordell near Wanganui. No one would guess he's credited with being New Zealand's first commercial deer farmer, he helped develop the idea of blending possum and merino wool, and now he's developed a possum skin belt which people like Mahe Drysdale are wearing to help fight muscular aches and pains. [more]

07/06/2013: Intro and Ambrosia Dairy China
Expat Kiwi Daniel Smith works for a cheese manufacturer in Shanghai. He says the market for soft, fresh cheese is growing in the metropolitan city and there's little competition at present as many dairy companies were shut down after recent milk contamination scandals. [more]

07/06/2013: Regional Wrap
Dairy farmers are enjoying the calm before the calving storm and are very happy their payout's on the move up. [more]

07/06/2013: One Farm
Massey and Lincoln Universities have slowly lost ground with farm business management research, but now, thanks to financial backing from Dairy NZ, both are boosting their expertise with a Centre for Excellence in Farm Business Management. They hope to communicate with many more farmers through the interactive web site [more]

07/06/2013: Agrinews
A selection of agricultural news from the week. For further rural news go to the Radio New Zealand website. [more]

07/06/2013: Bring home the Bacon
Slipping on his overalls to supervise thousands of pigs and then getting the laptop out as chairman of the New Zealand Pork Industry Board is all in a day's work for North Otago farmer Ian Carter, who believes that the three potential barriers to growth in the industry are bio-security threats, high grain costs and cheap imports. [more]

14/06/2013: Intro and Guest
The CEO of the National Fieldays Society Jon Calder talks about taking New Zealand exhibitors to similar events in developing markets overseas. They'll have a trade presence over the next 12 months or so, in China, India and hopefully Russia. [more]

14/06/2013: Antarctica DNA
PhD student Stephen Archer talks about his love of Antarctica and the science he has been doing there. [more]

14/06/2013: Farmer Feeling
Farmers at the National Ag Fieldays update us on life in their patch. Most dairy farmers are feeling reasonably okay going into winter, the drought seems to be well behind them in terms of pasture growth, although the financial cost is still there. Sheep and beef farmers however are struggling with the volatile sheep meat prices. [more]

14/06/2013: Enticing Young People into Agriculture
The National Agricultural Fieldays attracts thousands of teenagers and young people each year. Some come for a day out but others are interested in a career in the agriculture sector. Country Life speaks to some of the education providers trying to attract the students and to the young people themselves about a possible future in agriculture. [more]

21/06/2013: Intro and Regional Wrap
Bitterly cold weather has been sweeping the country. Heavy snow's fallen in the south. [more]

21/06/2013: Chicken Champion
Retired farmer Ken Vincent has been breeding chickens for 70 years. [more]

21/06/2013: Blueskin Power
The Blueskin Resilient Communities Trust was formed in 2008 in Waitati, Otago and provides support for transition initiatives such as Waitati Edible Gardens, a low oil commuting group and the Blueskin Energy Project. Trust manager Scott Willis, and Blueskin Energy Project trustee Ross Johnston take Cosmo Kentish-Barnes to a hilltop where two testing towers are recording wind data for what will be New Zealand's first community owned and developed wind cluster. [more]

28/06/2013: Intro and Guest
Tokanui organic wool producer, Norman Strang. For more information about the wool survey call Norman on 03 246 8447 or email [more]

28/06/2013: Regional Wrap
The North Island is damp underfoot and lacking sunshine while in the South it's back to normal winter mode now that the snow storm has passed. [more]

28/06/2013: The Power of Pasture
Nicola Holmes is project manager for the Pasture Renewal Charitable Trust, an independent entity working to increase the rate of pasture renewal in New Zealand. [more]

28/06/2013: Lavender's Green
Lavender's Green is a Wairarapa based firm which makes a range of lemon and lime based products that sell throughout New Zealand and internationally. It was set up about 15 years ago by Mary Biggs who wanted something to do when her four children were at school. She and husband Peter now live most of the year in Melbourne, and Greg Kerr does the day to day business management. [more]

28/06/2013: Masterweave Textiles
Lindsay and Philippa Cairns were pioneers farming angora goats. They were also early adopters of large scale bull beef farming. Then in 1989 they purchased a small weaving company right in the middle of Masterton. Here they make mohair and alpaca rugs with a soft downy finish which is achieved using a centuries old brushing technique using the dried teasels from the thistle plant. Products are sold throughout New Zealand and overseas, some even being exported to China. [more]

05/07/2013: Intro and Guest
Andy Shaw is an ex kiwi farm boy who, for the past few decades, has been running his own trucking business hauling feedlot cattle hundreds of miles into the USA. [more]

05/07/2013: Regional Wrap
It's the calm before the calving storm in the North Island while in the South; temperatures reached 20 degrees which is unusual for mid-winter. [more]

05/07/2013: The Formary
Bernadette Casey and Peter Thompson run Wellington company the Formary. It blends New Zealand wool with a range of waste fibres to create new textiles. Its products aim to help overseas firms and countries reduce pollution, recycle waste, and gain a few more green ticks for sustainability. [more]

05/07/2013: Get Stuffed
Tyron Southward is one of New Zealand's top exponents of preserving nature in still life. He specialises in preparing, stuffing, and mounting the skins of big game animals from his taxidermy workshop in Dunsandel, mid-Canterbury. [more]

12/07/2013: Intro and Regional Wrap
Calves are starting to appear around the North Island as a more wintery week hits most regions, and in the South Island break fencing and general winter maintenance continues. [more]

12/07/2013: How Ewe Doing?
Southland farmer David Rose is concerned about the future of the Sheep Industry in New Zealand. [more]

12/07/2013: Wholegrain Organics
Each week you'll find Wholegrain Organics at the Feilding Farmer's market, but what many people don't know is that the baked goods are produced deep in the countryside on a small rural holding 5 kilometres from Kimbolton. The property is also home to an enviro-preschool and a health centre - all run by a church group which aims to be a blessing to their community. [more]

19/07/2013: Intro and Guest
Rob Livesey is a sheep, beef and cropping farmer from Scotland. Farmers there have finally had a break from 14 months of winter. [more]

19/07/2013: Regional Wrap
Calves are arriving thick and fast in the North Island and in the South, farmers are winter feeding, moving breaks and trying to get sheep shorn before scanning. [more]

19/07/2013: Hihi Olives
Fourteen years ago Colin and Lynette Wilson left Lower Hutt for the far north. Colin liked eating olives - so he thought they should grow them. They have 1000 trees on their property that borders the beautiful Mangonui Harbour. [more]

19/07/2013: Food Forests
Robert and Robyn Guyton have planted a 'Food Forest' around their house in Riverton, Southland so no lawns need to be mowed and in season, the forest is dripping with organic fruit and nuts. The Guytons have several other local projects on the go too, from saving heirloom seeds and developing a community garden, to restoring the Te Wai Korari Wetland Reserve along the Jacob's River Estuary. [more]

26/07/2013: Intro and Guest
Riverton's Te Hikoi Southern Journey Museum curator, David Asher. [more]

26/07/2013: Regional Wrap
Mild conditions are continuing to make for a good winter in the North Island while in the South the winter pruning programme continues for apples and kiwifruit. [more]

26/07/2013: Moon Over Martinborough A Book Reading Part One
The heart-warming story of how two American city slickers came to settle in rural Wairarapa and the challenges they face living on the land. Read by the author Jared Gulian. [more]

26/07/2013: Local Table_ A Competition with Locally Sourced Produce
Amelia Nurse visits the inaugural Local Table competition in Paekakariki where the challenge is to prepare a dish with ingredients sourced entirely and only from the village of 1600 people. The judges were Kath Irvine and Earl Zapf. [more]

02/08/2013: Intro and Regional Wrap
It's been unusually warm and dry over much of New Zealand in recent weeks which has been great for calving and lambing, but now a bit of moisture would be nice. [more]

02/08/2013: Moon Over Martinborough: A Book Reading Part Two
The heart-warming story of how two American city slickers came to settle in rural Wairarapa and the challenges they face living on the land. Read by the author Jared Gulian. [more]

02/08/2013: Guarding the Strait
Riverton Coastguard's senior master Noel Anderson has saved many a life on Foveaux Strait. [more]

02/08/2013: Te Hape B Trust Farm
Te Hape B Trust is 4600 hectares of rolling sheep and beef country in Northern King Country. It's paid off a nearly three million dollar debt inherited when it took over from the Maori Affairs Department in the 1980's, and is now also making headway with its stock performance. It was a finalist in 2013 Ahuwhenua Trophy for Excellence in Maori Farming. The cross like Wharenui: Te Miringa Te Kakara. [more]

09/08/2013: Intro and Moon Over Martinborough: A Book Reading Part Three
The heart-warming story of how two American city slickers came to settle in rural Wairarapa and the challenges they face living on the land. Read by the author Jared Gulian. [more]

09/08/2013: Regional Wrap
In the North Island the dry conditions are continuing so rain would be welcome. In the South Island the mild weather has been ideal for calving. [more]

09/08/2013: Ahuwhenua Young Maori Farmer of the Year
Twenty-two-year-old Jordan Smith grew up in Auckland, but he always wanted to go farming. Now this pin up boy for sheep and beef farming is loving life as a shepherd on a northern King Country farm and he's just won the Ahuwhenua Young Farmer of the Year title. [more]

09/08/2013: The Ballance Farm Environment Awards
The supreme winners of the 2013 Ballance Farm Environment Awards, Craige and Roz Mackenzie, run an intensive arable operation near Methven in Canterbury that uses precision agriculture to maximise production in a sustainable manner. [more]

16/08/2013: Intro and Moon Over Martinborough
The heart-warming story of how two American city slickers came to settle in rural Wairarapa and the challenges they face living on the land. Read by the author Jared Gulian. [more]

16/08/2013: Regional Wrap
While there's been some rain the North Island, more would be very welcome to build up ground reserves for spring and in the South Island pastures are growing nicely. [more]

16/08/2013: Industrial Hemp
Hemp production and value added processing with Andrew Davidson, a Midlands Seed director and business manager for Oil Seed Extraction in Ashburton. [more]

16/08/2013: Grant Davan - The Herekino Dentist
Grant Davan has lived his life in the far north. His family came to Herekino 130 years ago and now Grant's sharing his love of the land with visitors to his small farm. [more]

23/08/2013: Intro and Moon Over Martinborough: A Book Reading, part 5
The heart-warming story of how two American city slickers came to settle in rural Wairarapa and the challenges they face living on the land. Read by the author Jared Gulian. [more]

23/08/2013: Regional Wrap
In the North Island paddocks are continuing to be shut up for early silage in many regions while conditions in the South Island are more like the end of September than the end of August. [more]

23/08/2013: Chris Kelly
Landcorp chief executive Chris Kelly is stepping down after 12 years in the job. He talks about the evolution of the country's largest farming enterprise. [more]

23/08/2013: Templeton Flax Mill
Southland dairy farmers Vaughan and Megan Templeton have New Zealand's only authentic flax mill plant operating on its original site. It was run by Vaughan's father who was a flax miller, until the industry collapsed in 1972. [more]

30/08/2013: Intro and Regional Wrap
In the North Island grass is still bolting away although temperatures dipped mid week and in the South Island milk production is steadily building as dairy farms hit the peak of calving. [more]

30/08/2013: Moon Over Martinborough A Book Reading Part Six
Today the lifestylers get stuck into their first olive harvest. Read by the author Jared Gulian. [more]

30/08/2013: Southern Skippers
In the small Southland port of Riverton, owner-operator commercial fishermen Robbie Wallace and Cyril Lawless are working hard to make a reasonable living off the sea. [more]

30/08/2013: The Herb Farm
Over 20 years ago Lynn Kirkland had a vision of a place where people could go and experience the world of herbs. Having treated her own children's colds with herbal based products, and completing a herbal remedies course, she set up in business, opening The Herb Farm in February 1993. A once bare paddock is now a rambling herb and tree filled garden. [more]

06/09/2013: Intro and Guest
Wild dogs are maiming and killing thousands of Australia's sheep. With Geoff Power from Wool Producers of Australia. [more]

06/09/2013: Regional Wrap
The working week finished on a stunning note in most parts of the North Island while in the South buds on early grape varieties are throwing out some green leaf. [more]

06/09/2013: Moon Over Martinborough A Book Reading Part Seven
Today the lifestylers collect a pig, which Jared Gulian is determined they don't want or need. [more]

06/09/2013: Treeline Native Nursery
Diane Coleman started Treeline Native Nursery 17 years ago to give herself a part time job while her children were little. Now it produces 300 thousand trees for native regeneration projects a year and employs 5 full time staff. She is also the supreme winner of the Rural Women New Zealand Enterprising Rural Women Award 2013. [more]

06/09/2013: Breaking New Ground
Mid-Canterbury farmers Jeremy Casey and Kim Solly, who milk 1300 cows near Methven, are conducting a comprehensive trial between conventional and biological farming to find out which system produces healthier soils and greater yields. For more information about the trial please call Jeremy on :027 220 2829 [more]

13/09/2013: Intro and Regional Wrap
Most of the North Island came through this week unscathed by this week's storm, but in the South Island gale force winds caused havoc in Canterbury. [more]

13/09/2013: Moon Over Martinborough: A Book Reading Part Eight
Livestock dying is just part of living in the country, and having already had to kill a poorly chicken, Natasha, CJ and Jared are now having to deal with an ill rooster. Jared is reading episode eight. [more]

13/09/2013: Bakers Creek Orchard
Chris Shaw and Chris Partridge are developing a large commercial orchard in Karamea on the West Coast where they grow passionfruit, feijoas and blueberries. [more]

13/09/2013: The Llama Lady - Julie Insley
Julie Insley has a menagerie on her small Kerikeri farm; dozens of llamas, pampered rare breeds of chickens with fancy hair-dos, a demanding parakeet and his sweet foe - a suplhur crested cockatoo. [more]

20/09/2013: Intro and Moon Over Martinborough A Book Reading Part Nine
The author, Jared Gulian is pickling olives. [more]

20/09/2013: Regional Wrap
Grass is still leaping out of the ground in the North Island while in the South lambs are appearing nicely without too much assistance. [more]

20/09/2013: Robert Bradley
Robert Bradley is one of a pair of growers who set up the Whangarei Growers' Market. He lives in the tiny settlement of Kohukohu in the far north where raises beef and grows vegetables in the district's fertile soil. [more]

20/09/2013: Peace and Permaculture
An environmentally and economically sustainable business is important for Paul Murray, who has started a project that links permaculture to his accommodation and transport businesses in Karamea. Just up the road Peter Curreen, another keen permaculturalist, has turned a paddock into a prime example of how permaculture design can enable sustainable food production. [more]

27/09/2013: Intro and Regional Wrap
Most of the North Island got hefty amounts of moisture this week, while in the South Island dairy calving's coming to an end. [more]

27/09/2013: Punakaiki Coastal Restoration Project
The Punakaiki Coastal Restoration project focuses on habitat restoration of coastal land adjacent to Paparoa National Park. It's a partnership between Conservation Volunteers New Zealand and the Department of Conservation. With project co-ordinator James Washer. [more]

27/09/2013: Otiwhiti Station Rangitikei
The Duncan family have owned Otiwhiti since the 1880s. Some of the revenue from this unforgiving hill country farm have been directed towards health based projects for over a hundred years, including the Duncan Polio Hospital in Whanganui. Otiwhiti is no longer run by the Duncan Charitable Trust, but it's farmed by Charlie and Jo Duncan and hosts a farm cadet training school. [more]

04/10/2013: Intro and Moon Over Martinborough A Book Reading Part Eleven
This is the final episode when author and reader Jared Gulian is heading off the Wairarapa lifestyle block to the big smoke of Wellington, with oil to sell. [more]

04/10/2013: Regional Wrap
In the North Island some farms almost have too much feed so farmers are rushing to turn it into silage, while in the South tractors are out preparing ground for summer crops. [more]

04/10/2013: Rangitikei Farm Stay
Kylie Stewart lives on a 630 hectare farm that has been in the Stewart family since 1901. She has breathed new life into old buildings, creating distinctive accommodation for up to 19 guests. They get a taste of rural New Zealand during their stays. March has been her busiest month with 100 bed nights. [more]

04/10/2013: Collywobbles
Colin Gavin facets Garnets he finds on Orepuki beach into gemstones for jewellery, he also pans for gold and takes deer hunters to the once thriving Preservation Inlet in his charter boat. [more]

07/02/2014: Porangahau Polo
New Zealand's first beach polo competition was held at Porangahau in southern Hawkes Bay between Christmas and New Year. Professional and recreational polo players from around the country took part - along with the Mongolian national team. The Ghengis Khan team arrived in New Zealand in November to spend all summer training on a farm at Porangahau. [more]

14/02/2014: Intro and Jordan Bradley
A university student by day, Jordan Bradley, is president of the Helensville A and P Society. [more]

14/02/2014: Regional Wrap
In Northland some people are whispering the word 'drought' while the east coast of the North Island's looking quite green. In the South farmers have started flushing Ewes and a number of dairy herds have gone to once-a-day milking. [more]

14/02/2014: Australia's Black Saturday Five Years On
It's five years since the Black Saturday fires ravaged Victoria - killing 173 people and wiping out homes and farms. Lyn Mullens was lucky to survive when the fires hit her Dixon's creek farm, and she says a number of fire hit communities held commemorations to mark the February 7 disaster. [more]

14/02/2014: Crown Research Institute Scion
Scion's Chief Executive Warren Parker talks about the challenges in the forest industry where the booming prices for export logs are making it hard for domestic wood manufacturers to be competitive. [more]

14/02/2014: Forging Ahead
Fifteen years ago sculptor Raymond Herber bought the Amberley Lime Works, a derelict limestone quarry that used to produce agricultural lime. It's now called the Iron Ridge Quarry Sculpture Park and is home to Raymond's large sculptures and eccentric inventions that are all made onsite. [more]

21/02/2014: Intro and Guest
The National Convenor of the New Zealand Ewe Hogget Competition, Stephen Rabbidge. [more]

21/02/2014: Regional Wrap
The Hawkes Bay apple harvest is running a week early and the size and colour of the apples is superb, while in the South Island, tupping has started and hay and bailage is still being made. [more]

21/02/2014: Indigenous Forestry
Scion scientist Greg Steward talks about research that is going into growing native species as commercial forestry enterprises. There are some startling production figures for kauri growth rates in particular. [more]

21/02/2014: Tractor Trekkers
Ten old orange tractors have been shipped across the Tasman to take part in a classic Aussie adventure around the South Island to raise money for children with cancer in New Zealand. Clink on this link to follow the trek: <> [more]

21/02/2014: Rex Butterworth Investing in the Environment
Waikato dairy farmer Rex Butterworth runs a highly stocked operation near Walton and he's just spent near enough to a million dollars in new dairy farm infrastructure in an effort to lower his environmental impact. [more]

28/02/2014: Intro and Guest
French engineering students Nina Saulnier-Blache and Alexandre Garcia-Cousteau have been working in New Zealand. [more]

28/02/2014: Regional Wrap
The south of the south had a very cool, wet end to the week while farmers in parts of Waikato and Northland are still looking longingly for black clouds. Andrew Honeyfield describes conditions near Te Aroha. [more]

28/02/2014: The Biodegradable Kiwifruit Spife
The research institute Scion, in collaboration with the kiwifruit marketer Zespri, has made an environmentally friendly version of a combined spoon and knife using kiwifruit waste and a plant based plastic. Dr Martin Markotsis has been working on the bio spife. [more]

28/02/2014: Bucking Bulls
Farmers and rodeo entrepreneurs Duncan and Tina Mackintosh are breeding big bucking bulls at Whiterock Station in North Canterbury. [more]

07/03/2014: Intro and Guest
Southland District Councillor for the Stewart Island Rakiura Ward, Bruce Ford. [more]

07/03/2014: Regional Wrap
Drought or near drought conditions are affecting much of Northland and Waikato, while in the South Island parts of Canterbury were severely battered by wind and rain storms earlier this week. [more]

07/03/2014: Cherrylane Miniatures
Teresa Martin breeds miniature horses near the picturesque town of Oxford in North Canterbury. [more]

07/03/2014: Tatua Dairy Celebrates 100 Years
On the afternoon of Sunday March 2, crowds of people gathered under huge oak trees on a property near Morrinsville in Waikato. They were there to mark the 100th anniversary of the tiny but prosperous Tatua dairy co-operative. [more]

14/03/2014: Intro and Guest
Leo Mangos was one of the key figures involved in setting up the single desk for exporting kiwifruit 25 years ago, this week. It was established in March1989 to turn around the fortunes of the kiwifruit industry and stop growers from going bust. [more]

14/03/2014: Regional Wrap
Every region of the North Island is wanting rain, but they're wary of how it will arrive when Cyclone Lusi hits the country from Friday night. In the South the dry conditions are making fruit harvesting an easy task. [more]

14/03/2014: Tamarillo Trials
Craig Watson is one of the largest tamarillo growers in the country. His Northland orchard was devastated by the tomato, potato psyllid, but with new trees in the ground and regular spraying to keep the pest away, it is now back to full production. [more]

14/03/2014: Stewart Island Smoked Salmon
Gary Huggins and Nic Banks produce smoked salmon on Stewart Island and sell the award winning delicacy direct to customers in Wellington and around the South Island. Nic looks after sales and attends several farmers markets every week, while Gary stays at home and does the smoking. Gary has also started producing honey from varroa free bees he has imported from the Chatham Islands. [more]

21/03/2014: The World is Your Oyster
Jim and Hilli Maass-Barrett of Oystercatcher's Choice Oysters grow their Bluff oysters in Big Glory Bay on Stewart Island. The large oysters grow for up to five years and their farming system that Jim has developed allows them to harvest all year round. [more]

21/03/2014: Intro and Regional Wrap
Many farmers in the North Island are lamenting the fact that ex-cyclone Lusi didn't bring promised rain. In the South cropping farmers have some late crops still to harvest and everyone is enjoying excellent growing conditions. [more]

21/03/2014: Federated Farmers President Bruce Wills at Trelinnoe
Bruce Wills is standing down after three years in the top job this July. His leadership style has ushered in a new vibe for the previously conservative farmer organisation. On farm he and brother Scott have drought proofed their property by slashing sheep numbers, and Bruce is using dung and thistle beetles to give biological solutions to a couple of problems. Their property Trelinnoe also includes a 12 hectare formal garden which is open to the public. [more]

28/03/2014: Intro and Guest
Federated Farmers president, and Hawkes Bay farmer, Bruce Wills, supports the proposal to build the Ruataniwha Dam. [more]

28/03/2014: Regional Wrap
The North and western parts of the North Island continue to slide into drought and in the South Island grape harvesting is in full swing and dairy farmers in Canterbury are looking at milking into May. [more]

28/03/2014: Rural Women New Zealand - Wendy McGowan
Wendy McGowan is the new president of Rural Women NZ. She and her husband Rusty share an interesting hobby which took them from Rotorua to North Cape and back for a weekend. She also talks about her aims for the organization she now heads. [more]

28/03/2014: Obit for David Henshaw
Last weekend the well-known rural cartoonist, artist and former land valuer David Henshaw died. His cartoons of farmer Jock have reflected every conceivable aspect of country life for the past three and a half decades ..along with Jock's horse and long suffering dog and his bar-propping-up rural friends. A tribute from great friend Dr Clive Dalton. [more]

28/03/2014: Muttonbirding
Harvesting muttonbirds on the Titi Islands is a family tradition for Stewart islanders, Phillip and Zane Smith. Phillip has been a fisherman for most of his life and now he runs an eco tourism business. Zane has a paua quota and catches butterfish, but the recent advent of cage diving to see great white sharks is making him think twice about diving for paua. [more]

11/04/2014: Intro and Guest
Jennie Gore manages Te Kauwhata and District's Information and Support centre. It's the information hub for the people who live in and around the north Waikato town and is an example of how a small community has mobilised to ensure that people have access to services and support. [more]

11/04/2014: Regional Wrap
Rain has finally arrived delighting many farmers in the North Island but frustrating grape growers in the South. [more]

11/04/2014: Theileria Outbreak at Limestone Downs
When cows started to drop at Limestone Downs, the vet was called in and a vicious form of the disease Theileria confirmed. It's transferred by ticks and makes cows anaemic. One hundred and eighty cows had visible signs of the disease, 35 died and others had to be nursed back to health. It's expected Theileria will make itself known in other regions of New Zealand this spring. [more]

11/04/2014: Trust theTrap
The Stewart Island / Rakiura Community & Environment Trust's (SIRCET) pest manager, Denise Hayes, oversees pest control of the Halfmoon Bay Habitat Restoration Project and co-ordinates and supports volunteers. Denise also manages SIRCET's native plant nursery in Horseshoe Bay where locals can get native, bird friendly plants for their gardens. [more]

18/04/2014: Intro and Guest
Chris Howell says the recent rain has been a hiccup in an otherwise very promising season. [more]

18/04/2014: Regional Wrap
Rain gauges around the country have had more in them that they have for months which is good news for most farmers, especially those in the North Island. [more]

18/04/2014: Eels for England
Te Waihora / Lake Ellesmere commercial fisherman Clem Smith works the scenic lake for eels and exports them to London for the jellied market. [more]

18/04/2014: Taratahi Tautane Station
Iconic Hawkes Bay sheep and beef station Tautane was purchased by Ngati Kahungunu in May 2013. It's leased by the agricultural training organisation Taratahi and students get the opportunity to work on a farm which still has five thousand lambs to muster and big ranging hills and valleys to ride over. Left: Tautane Farm manager Matt Smith and shepherd Cam, Middle: Taratahi Sheep and Beef Students and head tutor Simon Bailey, Right: Matt Smith up at Cape Turnagain weather station on Tautane Station [more]

25/04/2014: Truffles with Rosie
Gareth Renowden grows three different species of culinary truffles on his Waipara Valley farm in North Canterbury. The truffles are sold to restaurants around New Zealand and his next goal is to start exporting them, but he couldn't do it without Rosie his champion truffle hound. [more]

25/04/2014: Intro and Guest
Rob and Karen Newman won Federated Farmers Gisborne Wairoa Farmer of the Year title this month. Their farm earnings are over double the district average, and well above even the top ten percent of farmers. Intensive bull farming, applying generous amounts of fertiliser and setting goals help improve farm returns. [more]

25/04/2014: Regional Wrap
Apart from the poor West Coast of Northland, the North Island's received good soaking rains in the past week or more, while in the South Island West Coast farmers are cleaning up debris after last week's storm. [more]

25/04/2014: Ben James Young Hawkes Bay Apple Orchardist
Ben James started his working life in the military, he then went building houses but now as a 29 year old, has a clutch of grower competition titles to his name and he loves the apple industry which is challenging, ever changing and he says has a bright future. He's on an orchard growing the small, super sweet apple, Rockit. It's exported in a tennis ball sized tube which goes down well in Taiwan. [more]

02/05/2014: Possum Hunt
This year Paparimu playgroup hosted its 14th annual possum hunt. The fundraising event draws people from the community and beyond who spend the weekend trapping and shooting possums and other pests. There are prizes for the most possums, the best possum coat, for the heaviest possum and for rabbits, hares and other wild things. The possums are plucked, the fur sold and the money is given to the play group. [more]

02/05/2014: Intro and Guest
Lincoln University PhD student Chris Littlejohn is conducting a study that looks at the use of giant perennial grass as a shelter plant on Canterbury dairy farms. [more]

02/05/2014: Regional Wrap
In the North Island there's still enough warmth generally for the grass to grow, and in the South Island dairy farmers are approaching the tail end of the milking season. [more]

02/05/2014: Down to the Bone
Greg Northe loves to carve bone and hunt deer and he's been doing both on Stewart Island / Rakiura for over twenty years. [more]

09/05/2014: Intro and Regional Wrap
Store lamb prices have taken a strong jump up in recent weeks, and in the South Island winter pruning has begun in Marlborough's vineyards. [more]

09/05/2014: Rural News
A selection of the week's rural news. [more]

09/05/2014: Scion and Precision Forestry
Scion's Precision Forestry work is enabling forest managers to get a bird's eye view of their forestry blocks so they can more accurately measure their crops... and map the contour of the land underneath so they can plan things like skid sites and roading. [more]

09/05/2014: Dairy Industry Awards
This weekend the creme de la creme of the dairy industry will be recognised at the national Dairy Industry Awards. Onewhero farmers Bryce and Rosemarie Costar are in the running and say the benefits of entering the competition are huge. [more]

09/05/2014: Primary Growth
Cosmo Kentish-Barnes joins a field trip in Canterbury that showcases four Primary Growth Partnership (PGP) programmes. The aim of the PGP is to support companies in the primary sector to grow through long-term innovation programmes that are jointly funded by government and industry. [more]

16/05/2014: Intro and Guest
Chief executive of Westland Milk Products, Rod Quin. [more]

16/05/2014: Regional Wrap
It's exceedingly wet in many North Island regions and in the South Island prime stock's moving into processing and there's a good demand for stores. [more]

16/05/2014: What a Catch
Stewart Island fisherman Brett Hamilton's boat has been chartered by fisheries scientists who are studying the health of the southern blue cod fishery. [more]

16/05/2014: Kiwifruit Kicks Back
In 2010 devastating bacterial disease PSA hit kiwifruit orchards in New Zealand, initially just in Bay Of Plenty but now it's in nearly every growing region pretty well wiping out, in particular, the high paying darling of the industry the gold, Hort 16A. In the early days people talked of being in deep holes, gut wrenching emotions and contracting and picking gangs were leaving the region. But in 2012 there was a small glimmer of hope that a newly developed gold kiwifruit, G3, was more resistant to PSA, and may offer a way forward. So where is the industry at: the growers, the packhouse operators, the researchers and the future planners. [more]

23/05/2014: Growing Jobs
The Eastern Institute of Technology, Work and Income and local iwi have teamed up with an Hawkes Bay orchardist, John Bostock, to set up a training programme that's helped some locals get off the unemployment benefit. [more]

23/05/2014: Intro and Regional Wrap
Kiwifruit harvesting's on the homeward stretch in the North Island, while in both islands dairy herds are drying off. [more]

23/05/2014: Love's Southern Bird
If it's a fine weekend in North Canterbury Leigh Love will be out looking for fossils. His most important find to date was in 2009, when he uncovered the bones of a previously unknown species of seabird. Leigh takes Cosmo Kentish-Barnes to the site near the Waipara River where he made the discovery to see if he can spot some other 58 million-year-old fossils. [more]

30/05/2014: Trial and Error
The 2014 New Zealand Sheep Dog Trial Association Tux South Island and New Zealand Championship is being hosted by the Geraldine Collie Dog Club at Waihi Station near Geraldine. There are four events and about 300 teams from around the country are competing for higher honours. [more]

30/05/2014: Intro and Regional Wrap
Two cracking frosts tickled up most North Island regions this week while in the South Island dairy cows are moving onto winter grazing. [more]

30/05/2014: Producing Pigs
Grant and Ross Skilton farm 5000 pigs near Whanganui. Each week 25 litters are born, usually on a Wednesday, and another 240 pigs head off the farm for processing. The pigs grow from one kilogramme to 95 kgs in 20 weeks. [more]

06/06/2014: Farmer Phil King Purely Dorset Duvets
Phil King is a 70 year old central Hawkes Bay farmer. He's been a champion ram breeder and fat lamb produce, President of the Royal Agricultural Society of NZ and organiser of the AC Cameron Award. He's a battler who's embraced opportunities and challenges. One currently involves developing Purely Dorset, a duvet business using pure poll dorset wool from the family farm. [more]

06/06/2014: Intro and Guest
Doug Laing reports on New Zealand's success at the Olympics of Shearing. [more]

06/06/2014: Regional Wrap
In the North Island the last of the kiwifruit is coming off and picking gangs are going straight into pruning, while in the South pregnancy scanning is underway on cows and sheep. [more]

06/06/2014: Belted Galloways
Linda van Eyk breeds belted galloway cattle at Pirongia in Waikato. In the US, the striking cows are sometimes called Oreos - that's because their coats resemble the Oreo cookie - which has creamy icing sandwiched between two darkly coloured chocolate biscuits. [more]

13/06/2014: Intro and Guest
Niwa's weather expert Chris Brandolino talks about the great downpours which occurred in many regions this week. [more]

13/06/2014: Focus on Deer
This year's Deer Industry Annual Conference was held in Methven and had a theme of "Grass Roots - Green Shoots". Its aim was to stimulate 'green shoots' among the next generation of deer farmers by transferring knowledge of international markets and leading edge science, to a grass roots audience. Cosmo Kentish-Barnes attended the field day component at Mt Hutt Station, which was converted from sheep to deer by the Hood family, to find out about the state of the industry that only began in 1970, when the first deer farming license was issued. [more]

13/06/2014: Fieldays Fever
The 46th National Agricultural Fieldays at Mystery Creek near Hamilton show case the very best of New Zealand agriculture, and this year our team checked out a Taranaki farmer who sells angus beef on line and tweets twenty times a day, an export beef company with a strong presence in Indonesia, bull beef patties and a just launched web site to help you land your dream job. [more]

13/06/2014: Fieldays Fever
The 46th National Agricultural Fieldays at Mystery Creek near Hamilton showcases the very best of New Zealand agriculture, and this year our team checked out a Taranaki farmer who sells angus beef on line and tweets twenty times a day, an export beef company with a strong presence in Indonesia, bull beef patties and a just launched web site to help you land your dream job. <> [more]

20/06/2014: Intro and Guest
Paul Leuthard is a Kiwi with an engineering and dairy farming backround who is now working on agricultural projects in Turkey. He says one former government run farm of six and a half thousand hectares which he's been working with is now one of the most high tech in the world. [more]

20/06/2014: Regional Wrap
It's been very wet around the North Island and in the South farmers are recovering from last week's heavy rain. [more]

20/06/2014: Logically Biologically
.Golden Bay dairy farmer Mark Manson's shift to biological farming on his East Takaka farm has helped solve his problem of poor pasture caused by extended dry summer conditions. [more]

20/06/2014: Krishna Farm
Located in the Motueka Valley near Nelson, this 12 hectare smallholding provides a satisfying means of livelihood for those working on the property, who are also wanting to become more spiritually conscious. Hare Krishna devotee Balaram Rutledge manages the organic farm that sells most of its produce to Farmers' Markets across the region. . [more]

27/06/2014: Intro and Guest
Chair of or the New Zealand Companion Animal Council, Dr John Hellström. [more]

27/06/2014: Regional Wrap
It's been particularly warm and wet around the country. [more]

27/06/2014: Say Cheese!
After years of making award winning goats cheese on an isolated farm near Perth in Australia, Gabrielle Kervella & Alan Cockman decided to sell up and retire to the greener pastures of Golden Bay. The desire to make cheese proved too strong for them though and now they are using milk from their neighbour's dairy farm to produce fine cheese. It's made in a mobile factory Alan has designed and built out of a shipping container. [more]

27/06/2014: The Good Oil - Wairarapa's Olive Harvest
Martinborough is celebrating its second olive festival this weekend (27-29 June). It marks the culmination of the annual olive harvest in the Wairarapa region, which boasts the biggest concentration of olive groves in the country. At the height of the harvest earlier this month, the owners of Olivo, one of the oldest commercial groves in the country, were revelling in a perfect day for harvesting olives, calm, sunny and with no hint of frost. Frost can destroy an olive crop overnight. The first of the 1200 trees at Olivo were planted in 1991, and like most groves a range of varieties were put in the ground. Most of the oil is marketed in New Zealand in products ranging from infused oils to soaps. Some is also exported to Canada. Helen and John Meehan from Olivo use hand held electric rakes for the smaller trees and a tractor mounted tree shaker to harvest the fruit from the taller trees - there are about ten of theses machines in New Zealand. Andrew Taylor is the president of Olives New Zealand. He says feedback from most growers is that it's been a great summer, reflected in the quality of the fruit. The first of the new oils are tasting very fruity with all the attributes growers look for, he says. Bill Hey, operations manager at the Olive Press in Masterton, agrees. The Olive Press processes fruit from Hawke's Bay south. He says the olives are delivering good yields of oil and the quality is excellent this year. [more]

04/07/2014: Regional Wrap
A wintery blast has hit most parts of the North Island this week, while in the South Island, farmers are in winter feed mode. [more]

04/07/2014: Lilies by Blewden
David Blewden is the president of the New Zealand Flower Growers' Association. He is also one of the country's largest growers of lilies. In the ten days before Mothers' Day 100,000 lilies leave his property near Cambridge, and most people ask for pink. [more]

04/07/2014: Going with the Flow
Golden Bay dairy farmer Sue Brown has been acclaimed for her leadership of the Aorere Catchment Project. It's been responsible for cleaning up waterways in the Collingwood area after it was found that run-off from pastures was affecting water quality in the coastal marine harvesting area. As well as her involvement in water quality projects, Sue also chairs the Golden Bay dairy section of Federated Farmers and is on the Nelson Marlborough Conservation Board. Sue and her partner, John Nalder, farm 300 dairy cows at the foot of the Wakamarama Range; a flood prone block of coastal land where they've lived for 17 years. [more]

11/07/2014: Woodhaven Gardens
Three generations of Clarks have been involved in Woodhaven Gardens, a vegetable growing business John set up with his father Eric, 35 years ago on the outskirts of Levin. They farm 600 acres, employing 130 people, with at least a dozen nationalities represented on staff. In rain, hail or shine the harvesting teams hand pick or cut crops like parsley, leeks, beetroot, lettuce and cabbage to send throughout the country. [more]

11/07/2014: Intro and Guest
Central Plains Water chief executive, Derek Crombie. [more]

11/07/2014: Regional Wrap
It's so wet in Northland that milk tankers are needing to be towed onto some dairy farms, while in the South Island some early lambs and calves are on the ground. [more]

11/07/2014: Flax Weaving
Ali Brown weaves flax or harekeke. She works mainly from her home in Sefton, North Canterbury but has done flax weaving workshops as far afield as Norfolk Island. In 2009 she published her first instructional book called Weaving Flowers from New Zealand Flax and there's another book in the pipeline. [more]

18/07/2014: Intro and Regional Wrap
Frosty conditions have been experienced in many regions this week. South Island farmers are preparing for a polar blast from Saturday. [more]

18/07/2014: ANZAC Theatre Celebrates First Birthday
Dargaville's Anzac Movie Theatre is celebrating one year in business, and it all started in a kumara packing shed where the fire escape was the truck delivery door rolled up. The old armchairs and seats with croqueted cushions are a remaining reminder that this is where the movies were first shown in 2009. They're now screened in town, in a purpose built theatre in the old library. [more]

18/07/2014: Hops Research
Ron Beatson is a home brewer - but much more importantly, a big influence on commercial brewing around the world. His career is based around hops - initially a wild plant - but since possibly the 11th century cultivated as a critical ingredient in beer, lending it that essential pleasant bitter flavour. And - an increasing varied palette of flavours, thanks to New Zealand research. These days, Ron and his colleagues work with the local and international brewing folk to come up with ever more tasty and enticing influences hops can have on one of the world's oldest and most favoured brews. [more]

25/07/2014: Golden Pliers
Last month eight of the country's top fencers sweated their way through a gruelling six hour event to see who could erect the strongest, straightest and tidiest fence. Finalists this year ranged in age from their early 20's to 59 and the competition was fierce. [more]

25/07/2014: Intro and Guest
Mitchel Hoare will represent New Zealand with fellow shepherd Alex Reekers at the World Young Shepherds Challenge in Auvergne, France, in September. [more]

25/07/2014: Regional Wrap
A very cold snap hit the North Island at the start of the week while in the south dairy grazers are returning home in time for calving. [more]

25/07/2014: Community Coffin
The Golden Bay community coffin is used about 12 times a year. It was designed in 2002 by Takaka resident Henry James, with the support of community worker Sheryl Nalder and made by local craftspeople. The coffin is housed in a barn at Autumn Farm, a gay farm-stay run by horticulturist, Peter Finlayson. [more]

01/08/2014: Intro and Guest
Sigridur Gudbjartsdottir has come from Iceland to work on an 800 cow farm in Mangakino in South Waikato. She grew up on a farm with 35 cows. [more]

01/08/2014: Regional Wrap
A nor westerly wind's warmed up the East Coast of the North Island this week, and in the South, temperatures reached a balmy 19 degrees in Central Otago. [more]

01/08/2014: Sweet Returns - High Performance Manuka Plantations
A Primary Primary Growth partnership between the Government, honey company Comvita and the Manuka Research Project Limited (MRPL) aims to push returns from Manuka honey past the $1 billion mark - a sixteen-fold increase on current returns. MRPL's Neil Walker explains how it could be achieved and how he hopes erosion-prone back country land will become home to profitable Manuka plantations. Manuka Honey with high activity levels is in demand world-wide for use in medicinal dressings. [more]

01/08/2014: Fresh is Best
Debbie Campbell was a jet-setting corporate businesswoman until she swapped her heels for gumboots when she bought Bay Subtropicals. It is a seven hectare BioGro certified organic property near Takaka that she now runs with Lex Taylor. The unique micro-climate in the area allows them to grow avocados, mandarins, limes, oranges, feijoas, tamarillos, sapote, nuts and an assortment of other subtropical fruit. [more]

08/08/2014: Intro and Guest
Anders Crofoot is Federated Farmers vice president. He came to New Zealand from USA, 16 years ago. He puts his view on the foreign ownership of New Zealand land debate. [more]

08/08/2014: Regional Wrap
Around the North Island the effects of a lot of rain are being felt with pastures pugging, and in the South, snow has whitened the hills in Otago and Southland. [more]

08/08/2014: Wainono Wetland
A restoration project is underway at the Wainono lagoon in South Canterbury to provide more and better freshwater to support the lagoon's ecosystems, as well as improve habitat and species numbers. Environment Canterbury biodiversity officer Kennedy Lange is managing the project. It's likely to cost nearly $2.5 million over five years for fencing, planting and weed management. [more]

08/08/2014: Kaipara Kumara
The kumara industry has had two good years price-wise and is looking for new opportunities for kumara, including exports to Malaysia. [more]

08/08/2014: Mana Shochu
The idea to make the Japanese fire water, Shochu, from New Zealand kumara came after two men were in a boat fishing on Lake Taupo. It took seven years of research and development before they had product to sell, and now the high dollar is dampening chances in Japan, but Mana Shochu still sees a good future for a kiwi version of the drink. The kumara used in the shochu are all hand picked to help produce a quality distilled product. [more]

15/08/2014: Sandalwood on Erromango
Recognised Seasonal Employment workers from Vanuatu are working in a kiwifruit packhouse and orchard operation in Pukekohe. The money they make is letting them buy solar panels and housing materials to take home, as well as support sandalwood plantations on their home island Erromango. [more]

15/08/2014: Intro and Guest
John Wilton works as a pipfruit consultant for AgFirst in Hawkes Bay. He's worked in the industry for over 50 years and says the past few seasons have been some of the most exciting, and successful. He says good apple varieties  nearly foot it with gold kiwifruit for returns. [more]

15/08/2014: Regional Wrap
A cold nasty snap hit the North Island at the week's end, while in the South the West Coast is sodden. [more]

15/08/2014: Village Milk
Mark and Phillippa Houston sell raw milk on their farm near Takaka because they think it's significantly better than processed milk. The milk, that's collected daily from a herd of 22 cows, goes straight into an Italian-made dispensing machine where it's sold fresh at the farm in glass bottles. The concept is called Village Milk and after the pilot scheme began at their farm in 2011, it led to inquiries from farmers and consumers throughout the country. Now there are Village Milk franchises on farms in Moutere, Greymouth, Oxford, Marton and Timaru. [more]

22/08/2014: The Alexander Piano
Adrian Mann finished building what he believes is the world's largest piano when he was 19-years-old. He built it in an implement shed on Peter and Jane Evans' beef and sheep farm in Pareora, South Canterbury where regular concerts are held to showcase its unique sound. [more]

22/08/2014: Intro and Guest
Builder and industrial hemp pioneer, Greg Flavall. [more]

22/08/2014: Regional Wrap
August has suddenly turned quite cold in the North Island, slowing summerfruit tree growth and pasture, while in the South Island ground conditions are drying out and early spring cereals are being sown. [more]

22/08/2014: Farming's First Couple
Charlie and Jody McCaig are the New Zealand dairy industry's equity farmers/sharemilkers of the year. Not that long ago Charlie spent his days selling records in a music shop in the UK and Jody also had an office job in the city. Charlie was scared of cows and neither had any experience working on a dairy farm. Now their office is a lush farm with glorious Mount Taranaki as its backdrop. [more]

29/08/2014: Intro and Guest
Canterbury-based Lincoln University has entered into two new farming ventures in the North Island; one is with St. Peter's School in Cambridge. The school has its own dairy farm. [more]

29/08/2014: Regional Wrap
Around the North Island most farms have low pasture covers because it's been colder than usual and condensed lambing and calving has quickly pushed up demand for feed. Calving and lambing's in full swing in the South Island and survival rates are excellent. [more]

29/08/2014: Blooming Gerberas
Bernie Kay has been growing flowers commercially for 35 years. He grows 660,000 gerberas a year in Ramarama south of Auckland and has 4 hectares in irises. [more]

29/08/2014: Totara Estate
New Zealand's first shipment of frozen mutton was slaughtered at Totara Estate and sent to Britain from Port Chalmers in 1882. It was the beginnings of New Zealand's multi-billion dollar frozen meat industry. Today Totara's restored farm buildings and displays are a tribute to the courage and determination of New Zealand's early pioneers. [more]

05/09/2014: Intro and Guest
Waimate based general practitioner, Dr Sarah Creegan. [more]

05/09/2014: Regional Wrap
Northland and the East Coast received rain they didn't need, Horowhenua and Bay of Plenty didn't get rain they needed, otherwise most other North Island regions received welcome moisture, while the South's had had another dry settled week. [more]

05/09/2014: New Zealand Agriculture: An Economic Perspective
Professor Jacqueline Rowarth is co-author of New Zealand Agriculture: An Economic Perspective. [more]

05/09/2014: Albie's Electric Car
Albie Burgers is a farmer, environmentalist and inventor who lives with his wife Felicity on a bushy 120 acre property near the Kahurangi National Park in Kotinga. Over the years he's been involved in many alternative energy projects, the latest of which is "Li'l Blue" a 1988 Daihatsu Charade that has been converted to electric and has a range of 100 kilometres. It runs of 24 lithium batteries and Albie plans to attach two solar panels to the car to charge the batteries. [more]

05/09/2014: Taupo Beef
Mike and Sharon Barton farm near Lake Taupo. Like many in region they've had to adjust to farming under a nitrogen cap which means they can't cover rising costs simply by intensifying production. Rather than being daunted by the legislation, they've embraced it and increased the value of what they farm. Taupo Beef is sold directly to a local butcher who sells it in his retail shop as well as to top end Taupo restaurants like Huka Lodge and the Hilton. The Bartons also won this year's Waikato Ballance Farm Environment Supreme Award. [more]

12/09/2014: The Wallaby Lady
Bennett's Wallabies were first brought to the Waimate district in the 1870s and their descendants have been successfully breeding ever since. They are now considered a pest and shot by hunters who often leave the orphaned joeys with Gwen Dempster-Schouten, who cares for about 70 wallabies and a number of other displaced creatures at EnkleDooVery Korna near Waimate. [more]

19/09/2014: Avonstour Farm
John Earney farms rare breeds on his property near Douglas in Eastern Taranaki. He aims to live self-sufficiently and makes ends meet by supplying meat to New Plymouth's Farmers' Market and by running courses on self-sufficiency and rural living. John's helped in his endeavours by his daughter Ila and by dozens of WWOOFers who visit each year. [more]

14/11/2014: Guest
The 2014 Canterbury A&P Association President, Richard Parkes. [more]

14/11/2014: Regional Wrap
Hail and very cold temperatures have affected most North Island regions this week. It's been wet in coastal Southland. [more]

14/11/2014: Iron Maiden
Hannah Kidd creates sculptures out of steel rod and corrugated iron from her large workshop in Methven. She investigates people and the relationships they have with their surrounding environment. [more]

14/11/2014: Taste the Exotic
Brian Hales farms exotic sheep alongside his commercial flock in Wimbledon, southern Hawkes Bay. Recently he invited the public onto his farm so they could see the sheep being shorn, run their fingers through the fleeces and taste meat from the breeds. The sheep have their origins from as far away as Uzbekistan, Egypt, Wales and Spain. [more]

21/11/2014: Regional Wrap
High winds have made working outside miserable in much of the country. [more]

21/11/2014: Presenting the Peripatus
Brian Hales farm is home to the rare, slug-like peripatus. [more]

21/11/2014: Glamping Camping
A Manawatu farming couple, Sarah and Angus Gilbertson, have become one of nearly a dozen New Zealanders to set up a glamorous camping business on their property. The large, white canvas tents with wooden floors, crisp white linen and running hot water, add another level to the usual camping experience. Guests can relax in an outdoor bath, go walking and help shear a sheep. [more]

21/11/2014: When Country Comes to Town
The Canterbury A&P Show is an annual event that showcases the very best of New Zealand farming and rural life. The three day event attracted more than 100,000 visitors this year and received over 7,000 livestock and feature competition entries across 20 competition sections. Cosmo Kentish-Barnes was there to soak up the atmosphere and meet some of the livestock competitors and trade exhibitors. [more]

28/11/2014: Guest - Bronwyn Muir
Taranaki Federated farmers president, Bronwyn Muir. [more]

28/11/2014: Regional Wrap
Hawkes Bay hills are browning off as relentless winds dry them out. Meanwhile it's been wet and miserable in Southland. [more]

28/11/2014: Sheep Heaven - 25: At the Frankton sale
Sheep Heaven is a lifestyle block near Hamilton. Four years ago a foundation flock of ten ewes was purchased and over time the ups and downs of farming them and their off spring have been reported. Today, into its fourth season, nine spring lambs are being sold at the Frankton saleyards in Hamilton. [more]

28/11/2014: Terry King and the Anzac 100 Years 100 Horses Ride
Country musician, director and returned serviceman, Terry King from The Peaks in North Canterbury is organising a special Anzac day event called the Anzac 100 Years 100 Horses ride. [more]

28/11/2014: Coastal spring lamb
Turakina farmer Richard Redmayne set up Coastal Spring Lamb four years ago. The sweet and tender lamb is only available for 12 weeks a year, from mid October. The concept's taken off and the business now has ten farmers supplying more than 30,000 lambs to the Foodstuffs Supermarket chain. Logan Brown co-owner Shaun Clouston loves the product, and says it's like waiting for the whitebait or asparagus season to start. [more]

05/12/2014: The Best of a Pest
The Hauraki District Council is using a contractor with a pet ferret to kill the rabbits in its Paeroa cemetery. Local schools are also using this method to dispose of rabbits. [more]

05/12/2014: Regional Wrap
Three hail storms in Hawkes Bay have damaged apple crops and in the South Island Marlborough is bone dry while Wyndham's A and P Show is cancelled due to the wet conditions. [more]

05/12/2014: White Goose Fruit Winery
Tony Firmin arrived in New Zealand 60 years ago on a ship carrying steel beams for the Auckland Harbour Bridge. He's now nearly 83 and prunes 1900 feijoa trees a year, makes fruit wine from feijoas, plums and berries and has 70 flightless Sebastopol geese keeping the grass under control in his orchard as well as fertilising the soil. [more]

05/12/2014: Pig Out
Patoa Farms has won the Lincoln University Foundation's South Island Farmer of the Year competition for 2014. Steve Sterne and Jens Raven purchased 400 hectares in Hawarden, North Canterbury in 1998 and started the Patoa Farms pig operation from scratch. Now the property produces about 15 percent of New Zealand pig meat in an outdoor free-roaming stock operation. Jens retired in 2013 and Steve's daughter Holly, who has a background in banking, was enticed back to the farm to manage the $25 million annual turnover and 40 fulltime staff. [more]

12/12/2014: Guest
Funky Farmworkers Food coordinator, Jody Glassford. [more]

12/12/2014: Regional Wrap
Most North Island regions received very welcome rain this week, but some, like Bay of Plenty missed out on anything worth recording and still need a lot more. In Canterbury, demand for store lambs has softened a little and farmers have lowered their lamb target weights for processing. [more]

12/12/2014: The Pole Man
North Loburn based press photographer Don Scott turns pine logs into horse jumping and construction poles on an old British made lathe. [more]

12/12/2014: Lewis Road Creamery
Lewis Road Creamery's founder would like all dairy cows in New Zealand to be jerseys….he believes their milk makes the creamiest butter and milk you can produce. In fact it was the pursuit of excellent butter that led to the birth of Lewis Road Creamery - a company that now produces a range of milk, cream, butters and its elusive chocolate milk. Some of the milk is produced and it all goes into bottles at Marphona Farms, Australasia's largest organic dairy farm at Mangatawhiri. [more]

19/12/2014: Sector Report Vegetables and Beef
Bharat Jivan from the Pukekohe Vegetable Association looks at a few vege crops, and Bob Thompson from AgFirst discusses beef farming. [more]

19/12/2014: The road to glory is filled with pain and hard slog
Richard Welch was part of the team which set the five stand lamb shearing record at this time last year. The road to glory is filled with pain and hard slog. [more]

19/12/2014: Monowai Wines
Emma Lowe went to school in Hamilton then on to study the art and science of wine making in Adelaide, Australia and then California. She's worked in many wineries around the globe. It was when she was working Chile that she met the man who would become her husband, Marcelo Nunez. Now, Marcelo's grape growing skills are being put into practice on their own vineyard, Monowai, in Hawkes Bay. Only 3 per cent of Emma and Marcelo's wine is sold in New Zealand. [more]

19/12/2014: Sector Report Dairy and Sheep
Dave Miller from AgFirst talks about dairy fortunes and Steve Wyn-Harris looks at lamb prices and the mood of sheep and beef farmers. [more]

19/12/2014: Sector Report High Country Sheep, Arable, Cherries
Marlborough hill country farmer David Grigg, Mid-Canterbury cropping farmer David Clark and Tim Jones from 45 South Cherry Orchard in Central Otago. [more]

19/12/2014: Waireka Polo Farm
Roddy Wood's been playing polo for 30 years. He's a former manager of the Guards Polo Club in England, the home club of Prince Charles and for many years was the polo manager of the Palmera Polo Team for Sheikh Mohamed Alhamrani. Back in New Zealand it took Roddy several years to convert several hectares of bare land near Sefton into the Waireka Polo Farm and now, with the help of his three sons, he offers coaching to international visitors wanting to improve their game and is passionate about encouraging young people into polo. [more]

23/01/2015: The Organic Focus Vineyard Project
Rebecca Reider is the coordinator of the Organic Focus Vineyard Project that's documenting and demonstrating the realities of organic growing in three major New Zealand wine regions. [more]

23/01/2015: Regional Wrap
The East Coast of the North Island from Gisborne to Wairarap is looking very parched and lamb prices have dropped heavily, while in the South Island all regions apart from the West Coast desperately need some rain. [more]

23/01/2015: Chicken man
Jonathan Branton-Casey has found homes for over 40,000 unwanted commercial hens in the past five years and spends most of his evenings tending to them on his lifestyle property in North Canterbury. [more]

23/01/2015: Quaker Acres
Residents of the Quaker Settlement in Whanganui aim to live lightly on the land and use permaculture practises on their eight hectares near Virginia Lake. A dam at the back of property now collects storm water from a nearby housing subdivision, giving valuable water for the Quakers' tree plantation, as well as filtering the remaining water before it flows to the Whanganui river. [more]

29/01/2015: Regional Wrap
It is dry everywhere, many regions are desperate for rain. The Otago Regional Council is asking the Government to call for a state-of-drought declaration. [more]

30/01/2015: Sir Graeme Harrison
The meat industry veteran, Sir Graeme Harrison is funding a new academic post at Lincoln University - a Professorial Chair in Global Value Chains and Trade. [more]

30/01/2015: Ducks Unlimited
Ducks Unlimited is a conservation group which aims to increase the number of New Zealand wetlands, as well as developing ecosystems which will support water birds. The organisation helps with funding and advice for making wetlands, and members also help raise endangered brown teal and blue duck, for DOC. Diane Pritt is the new co-patron and farms a 120 hectare sheep and beef farm near Ohakune. Her property, Mitredale, has been in the family since 1948 and now has over 40 wetland areas. [more]

30/01/2015: Rural Curiosities
Andy Fox is a fourth generation sheep and beef farmer and a director of Beef and Lamb New Zealand, he's also amassed a huge collection of rural memorabilia on his Scargill property and is breeding dwarf sheep that will be used to control unwanted vegetation in vineyards. [more]

05/02/2015: The Birch Hill Station Memorial Ride
Theresa Rosanowski is organising the Birch Hill Station Memorial Ride. [more]

05/02/2015: Regional Wrap
Some North Island regions have had reasonably good rain, but follow up is needed, while in the South Island, Marlborough and Canterbury have missed out on rain and Otago needs a lot more. [more]

05/02/2015: David Fagan Retires
The New Zealand shearing legend David Fagan, has confirmed this week he's retiring from competitive shearing. [more]

05/02/2015: Weldagirl
Sharon Earl welds sculptures out of steel from her workshop in Pyramid Valley. Her life-sized 'Warhorse', made in a filigree style, was recently exhibited at the Sculpture on Shore exhibition in Devonport [more]

05/02/2015: Pirongia Boxing Day Races
Each year on Boxing Day the Pirongia Golf Club's front nine is transformed into a racing track. The races have been held in the rural Waikato community since 1866 and the Alexandra Racing Club, which hosts the races, is thought to be the oldest racing club still operating in New Zealand. Each year thousands of people arrive, spread their picnic blankets under the golf club's trees, tuck into Christmas left overs and watch trotters and gallopers race by. [more]

13/02/2015: Women of Waituna West
Waituna West Primary School parents are competing to see who can raise the most money for a whole school trip around the East Cape. The Women of Waituna (WOW) are holding a horse trek and dinner on March 21 and 22, the men, Brotherhood of Blokes, have yet to show their hand. [more]

13/02/2015: Regional Wrap
In the North Island grass is looking a bit greener, but it's still not growing. In the South Island a drought has been declared on the east coast. [more]

13/02/2015: Apples to India
Guhan Ramachandran is exporting New Zealand apples to India and selling them to a commercial market trader in Chennai. [more]

13/02/2015: Artisan Cheese Production
Artisan cheese makers in New Zealand toe a tough line. Aside from the vagaries of small business, regulations for production prove formidable for many producers. What do these regulations involve? And is artisan cheese making a viable venture in NZ? [more]

20/02/2015: Guest
Paul Paynter was awarded the New Zealand Fruit Wine and Cider Makers trophy in late 2014. [more]

20/02/2015: Regional Wrap
In Waikato feed supplies on dairy farms have dwindled considerably in the past couple of weeks and farmers are feeling the pinch. In the South Island conditions are extremely dry and most available water's being used for stock. [more]

20/02/2015: Gathering Goats
Last year David Hutchings sold 20,000 goats to meat processors. 18,000 of those were feral goats mustered out of bush around the North Island. David either sends them straight to the works or farms them on until they're up to standard. A new but growing part of his business is picking up and selling unwanted and under-performing goats from the thriving dairy goat industry to a meat company. [more]

20/02/2015: Milking on the Moove
After Glen Herud saw a picture of a Belgium farmer milking cows in a portable shed, it dawned on him that a cowshed could be totally mobile and as a result, he's developed a cowshed on wheels that fits into New Zealand farming systems. [more]

27/02/2015: Tractor Trek
Graham Murrell's driving a Massey Ferguson tractor from Whitanga to Bluff to raise money to support older people in his home town. [more]

27/02/2015: Regional Wrap
Northland's summer has been a cracker compared to last year's, and South Canterbury's Opuha Dam has dried up. [more]

27/02/2015: Handsome Huacaya
Huacaya alpaca breeders, Chris and Liz Strack have built up a large herd of the South American camelid at their Stoneleigh Alpaca stud in Ohoka, North Canterbury. Their primary focus is on breeding superior white and fawn alpacas to supply seed stock to the New Zealand and export market and to produce alpacas with superior fleeces. [more]

27/02/2015: Delhi Village
On the outskirts of Whanganui city a group of like minded people have bought 12 hectares of rural land to develop an environmentally sustainable community. They all own their own homes, but the bulk of the land is shared and available for orchards, gardens, firewood trees, wetlands and stock. The aim is for people to pursue their own goals in their own way, but everyone must have a composting toilet and houses are connected to one grey water system which keeps all water on site. [more]

06/03/2015: Gavin Roden
The annual dairy industry awards are underway and the first regional finalists have been named. The top awards for the North Island Central Plateau have all gone to South African born people who came to NZ for careers in dairying. [more]

06/03/2015: Sovrano Limoncello
Andrea and Marzia Loggia are Italian. They arrived in New Zealand in 2007 and by 2009, from their Kerikeri property, they started producing limoncello. Both had family backgrounds in wine making or liqueurs and they've won many trophies for their Northland produced product. Andrea is also getting into bees, with plans to make Royal jelly infused limoncello. [more]

06/03/2015: On The Bubble
Daniel Le Brun is known as the "grandfather" of sparkling wine in New Zealand. He came here after getting frustrated with the strict regulations governing the production of champagne in France and has spent the last forty years making high-quality sparkling wine in Marlborough's Wairau Valley. Music Details: 4 tracks from UPPM.AU: KOL_52_10, KOL_52_29, KOL_52_3, KOL_52_12 [more]

13/03/2015: Regional Wrap
Many North Island regions have had reasonable, season saving rains, while in the South Island it's still very dry in Marlborough and Canterbury. [more]

13/03/2015: Cloudy with a chance of clams
Ant Piper and his sons have been wild harvesting clams since the early 1990s. The jewels of the catch are diamond shell, moon shell, tua tua and storm clam. A marine engineer by trade, Ant designed a hydraulic winnowing rake to pump water into the sand and gently scoop up the shellfish which are prone to bruising. [more]

13/03/2015: Katikati BioBlitz
For 24 hours last weekend the Katikati community went in search of every species that lives in their area. Fungi, algae, moths, fish, weeds, intestinal worms and more than 45 types of spiders were brought into the town's memorial hall to be documented by scientists. The aim of the BioBlitz was to notch up 2400 species. [more]

13/03/2015: The Moth Man
Robert Hoare from Landcare Research identified 140 moths at the Katikati Bioblitz and found one that hadn't been seen in New Zealand for 25 years. He's still looking for the 'holy grail' of New Zealand moths. [more]

20/03/2015: Managing Meat - Broadleaf Game
Ex-pat kiwi Mark Mitchell runs a specialty meat firm in Los Angeles, a far cry from his beginnings where he was deer farming and into live capture in South Westland in the late 1970's. Even though everyone still wanted live animals in the industry's early days, Mark saw a future in venison sausages. They sold well so his next stop was USA to do the same thing there. After a rocky start he now has a two acre distribution centre in downtown LA. He imports NZ lamb and venison, crocodile and wagyu beef from Australia, sells ostrich, elk and rabbit meat and is into live capturing wild boar in Texas, exporting their meat to Europe. The live capture techniques are very similar to wild deer capture methods. "Boars are keen on their food", he says, "so easy to lure into pens." [more]

20/03/2015: Regional Wrap
Friday was beautifully sunny over the North Island, and despite Cyclone Pam, nearly every region still needs more moisture, while in Southland farmers are weighing up whether it's worth buying in supplementary feed to keep cows milking. [more]

20/03/2015: Successful Spraying
Ross Tanner had to get up out his chair three times at the inaugural Katikati and Waihi Beach Community Business awards. He won the Agricultural/Horticultural Business of the year award, the Most Socially Responsible business award, and Coach of the Year. [more]

20/03/2015: Cable Bay
Fred Stuart established the Cable Bay public walkway on his Nelson farm in 1984. He also put 200 hectares of coastal bush into covenants for protection. The farm is now run by Fred's son Ian and daughter-in-law Barbara, who are continuing his legacy of combining farming, conservation and recreation. The Bay got its name from a sub-marine cable that was laid between La Perouse near Sydney and Cable Bay in 1876. The cable was New Zealand's sole communication link with the rest of the world until 1902. [more]

26/03/2015: Tahi Estate - A Conservation Estate with Economic Backbone
A decade ago two Auckland academics saw the potential to turn a rundown coastal cattle farm near Whangarei into an eco sanctuary. John Craig and Anne Stewart removed the roaming cattle and converted the 540 hectares into a bee farm and conservation estate. They run three thousand hives and export manuka honey to a number of countries. Two hundred and fifty thousand native trees have been planted, wetlands created, and birds have been encouraged back with extensive pest control. Now Tahi Estate is home to 69 bird species, with many of them rare or threatened. Dr Craig says he was keen to access pateke, or brown teal and was told it would take three years to get approval. He says "within six months they'd arrived by themselves, a far better solution." The property which once employed one person, now supports over a dozen staff including bee keepers and a pest controller. John says another aim of Tahi Estate was to show it was possible to make money from conservation and while honey is their main income, visitors also can pay to stay on the farm, or walk over the 35 kilometres of track. Tahi has joined an international group called The Long Run Initiative. John says "it has a business model of the four "c's", we all must succeed at conservation, community, culture and commerce, and we are audited on those." [more]

27/03/2015: Onions in Europe
Jan Van der Lans from Van Der Lans International is a fruit and vegetable importer based in The Netherlands. For the past 25 years he's been importing onions from the Balle Brothers of Pukekohe. The new season's crop has recently arrived in Europe. [more]

27/03/2015: Regional Wrap
Large numbers of lambs are being sold in central North Island fairs, while in the South Island apples are colouring up nicely with cooler nights. [more]

27/03/2015: Fugitives in the Bush
Fugitives in the Bush is a story written by Cable Bay farmer Barbara Stuart. [more]

03/04/2015: Regional Wrap
Four people give their impression of farm conditions around New Zealand. [more]

03/04/2015: Woosters of Orira Orchard
John Wooster's great grandfather bought a parcel of land in the upper reaches of Hokianga harbour in 1902. Woosters have grown fruit trees on the land ever since and these days John is still planting up a mixed orchard including many heritage varieties. Ironically he pulled many of them out years ago because the supermarkets didn't like them. The family also has its own cemetery on the land which includes the grave of Frank Wooster who died from injuries received in WWI. [more]

03/04/2015: On the Throne
The Throne Station in Marlborough overlooks the Waihopai spy base and a sea of vineyards. David Dillon took over the sheep-and-beef farm from his father nearly 40 years ago and now his son Tommy is keen to follow in his footsteps. David's been gradually diversifying the dryland farming operation to counter the downturn in wool and meat prices. Now there's a vineyard and several fast growing woodlots on the property and Tommy's installed a professional motocross course on one of the hills, that's proving to be a hit with local riders. [more]

10/04/2015: Intro and Guest
Fromm Wines general manager and chairman of The Family of Twelve, William Hoare. [more]

10/04/2015: Community Environment Relevance Activities
There's a rural theme to Dawson Clutterbuck's show at the Physics Room, a contemporary art project space in Christchurch. The main gallery resembles a country hall, with court lines, indoor bowls and a dartboard inviting visitors to play. An accompanying video documenting the North Hokianga A&P Show provides a glimpse into this provincial area and highlights the importance of such social events to create a sense of community. [more]

10/04/2015: Pokeno Progress
The North Waikato town of Pokeno is being transformed. Eighteen years ago there were fears the town would die when it was by-passed but today an industrial park is being established and up to 1500 residential sections carved out of the rural landscape. Land and homes are being snapped up by people leaving Auckland and its house prices behind them. [more]

17/04/2015: Farm to Floor
In 2009 a group of Banks Peninsula sheep farmers pooled resources and formed the Banks Peninsula Farms Wool Growers Company to increase the value of the wool and to strengthen their farming community. Chris Chamberlain is chairman of the group who believe they produce particularly bright, strong and white wool. The company is aligned to Laneve branded wool under the Wools of New Zealand programme. They also produce designer rugs made entirely from Banks Peninsula wool. [more]

24/04/2015: A Don't Muddy the Water Project
Angela Halliday from Horticulture New Zealand talks about the 'Don't Muddy the Water' project to measure the effect of best management practice for soils on farms. [more]

24/04/2015: Regional Wrap
Hamish Gates reports from Pukekohe, Charlie McCaig from Taranaki and Nukuhia Hadfield from Wairoa. Jeff Sewell and Justin Davie comment on conditions on the land from their patches in the South Island. [more]

24/04/2015: Sister Noelene Makes a Habit of Sustainable Development
A Saint Joseph nun in Whanganui is doing her best to minimize her environmental footprint and invests tens of hours in planting fruit trees, native trees and deciduous trees, developing wetlands and running a huge vegetable garden, all with the aim of showing the community how to live more off the land [more]

01/05/2015: Demo Dairy Farm in Colombia
Dairy Solutionz, a Hamilton based company, has worked in Colombia since 2012. In the past 18 months they've developed a demonstration dairy farm to show how a low cost dairy model could help small herd owners to stay in business as more European dairy imports threaten their livelihoods. Colombia's President opened the farm at the end of April. [more]

01/05/2015: Regional Wrap
Dairy farmers are reeling from this week's drop in the milk payout, while weatherwise Friday was a glorious day in the North Island. In the South Island Canterbury and Marlborough received welcome rain, and Nelson's apple harvest is pretty well over. [more]

01/05/2015: Take A Bow
James Saunders is a secondary school teacher during the day, but in his spare time he makes bows and arrows for hunting. He says luckily for him his bow making, often out of kanuka, is better than his aim in the bush when goats often continue on their merry way undisturbed. While some native woods work well, his favourite bow wood is osage orange, a tree brought to New Zealand by American gold prospectors, it's dense and springy. [more]

01/05/2015: 100 Years 100 Horses
The Anzac Day remembrance in North Canterbury celebrated the 100 year anniversary of the Gallipoli landings. At dawn a company of 100 horses and riders dressed in replica World War I uniforms rode in formation from Peaks Hall near Hawarden to the Waikari War Memorial to place crosses at the cenotaph to commemorate the fallen. The idea behind the Anzac 100 Years 100 Horses event came from local resident and ex-serviceman Terry King, whose great-grandfather won a medal for his part in the conflict. [more]

08/05/2015: Intro and Guest
Timaru farmer Warren Darling has entered the Guinness Book of World Records after producing the world's largest crop of barley. [more]

08/05/2015: The Horse Whisperer
Abi Ricketts teaches natural horsemanship techniques at her riding school near Tai Tapu in Canterbury. Colloquially known as horse whispering, natural horsemanship is a philosophy of working with horses based on the horse's natural instincts and methods of communication. [more]

08/05/2015: Ponds of Gold
Murray Barker has been farming goldfish for 37 years. His small goldfish farm at the foot of Mount Te Aroha produces between 200 and 400-thousand goldfish each year. The fish are couriered all around New Zealand and end up in pet shops, garden centres, veterinary practices and in lawyers offices. [more]

15/05/2015: Deer with Dan Coup
Deer with Dan Coup. [more]

15/05/2015: Regional Wrap
Heavy rain throughout the North Island has made underfoot conditions difficult for all North Island farmers, while in the South Island North Otago could do with rain. [more]

15/05/2015: Organic Options
Te Aroha dairy farmer Gavin Fisher was one of the first to supply Fonterra with organic milk. However he's now banded together with other organic farmers as part of The Organic Dairy Hub Co-operative . The new co-op has 35 suppliers and, while it won't process milk, it will act as a broker for it. [more]

15/05/2015: Foraging Fever
Foraging for food on Banks Peninsula uncovers a wide range of delectable delights. Cosmo Kentish-Barnes spends a day at Port Levy finding and eating seaweeds, native plants, mushrooms and shellfish with wild food guru Peter Langlands, who has penned several regional foraging guides in-between his work as an environmental researcher, ornithologist, ecologist and photographer. [more]

22/05/2015: Guest
Federated Farmers North Canterbury Meat & Fibre Chairperson, Dan Hodgen. [more]

22/05/2015: Regional Wrap
It's been a warmer, drier week around the North Island, while on the West Coast of the South Island it's been raining cats and dogs. [more]

22/05/2015: Blooming Business
Specialising in gerberas and roses, Paul Loader's nursery in Springston South produces more than two million stems of cut flowers per year. He sells them through wholesale auction houses and distributes them to retail clients across the South Island. [more]

22/05/2015: Humming Hamama Orchard
In 1999 a Maori trust in Te Kaha set up a 20 year joint venture with independent investors, to develop a 4.4 hectare kiwifruit orchard. The hope was to give employment to locals, and encourage other whanau back home. It's been a success story. Locals have money, skills, some have set up supporting businesses like mulching and weed spraying, and the drug and alcohol free work environment has seen domestic violence drop. Over 800 thousand dollars is now saved up and the Maori trustees are looking at other investment opportunities. [more]

29/05/2015: Guest: James Allen
Waikato dairy consultant James Allen was a key-note speaker at agricultural field days in Osorno, Chile recently, and he talks about the dairy farming opportunities over there. [more]

29/05/2015: Regional Wrap
It's been frosty in the North Island. Winter pruning's in full swing on South Island orchards. [more]

29/05/2015: Revving up for a Health Pit Stop
The Institute of Rural Health is taking a Health Pit Stop out to farmers to check on things like Blood pressure, cholesterol, BMI and sugar levels, as well as getting them to fill in a questionnaire to look at emotional health and stress levels. Today young dairy workers are under the stethoscope. Questions about alcohol and food choices challenged some. [more]

29/05/2015: Under the Hammer
On Tuesday mornings the Canterbury sales yards on the outskirts of Christchurch is a hive of activity. Thousands of surplus to requirement rams, ewes, lambs, calves, heifers, steers, bulls and cows are sold to farmers, rural agents and livestock traders looking for a bargain. Bob Davidson is one of Rural Livestock's auctioneers and he's concerned about the drop in sheep numbers going through the yards. Tony Partridge is buying cattle at the auction he first attended with his father more than 60 years ago. [more]

05/06/2015: Guest - Stephen Korteweg
Some coastal Otago farms are water-logged after the recent storm says Federated Farmers Otago provincial president Stephen Korteweg. [more]

05/06/2015: Regional Wrap
Confidence in the beef industry were backed up by prices at the first of the season bull sales in Gisborne this week, while Marlborough farmers jumped for joy receiving a good 70 to 80 millimetres of rain this week. There was less jumping about the rain in the South of the South Island. [more]

05/06/2015: Harihari handicraft
Nolly Martini converted an abandoned cottage in Harihari into a craft shop and recently her daughter Ingrid has come back from Melbourne to help her run the business. The shop has been open for nearly 30 years now and specialises in handspun knitwear, including a popular jersey made from dog hair and wool. [more]

05/06/2015: Benneydale beckoning
Benneydale was a mining and milling town that once had a population of about 2000. Today, with those industries gone, it's about a tenth of that. However newcomers are settling in the King Country town, attracted by the quiet lifestyle, cheap housing and opportunities for tourism. [more]

12/06/2015: Guest
Sally Dakis and Rose Grant are rural broadcasters from Tasmania. They are putting their programme to air from New Zealand's agricultural Fieldays. [more]

12/06/2015: Farming Conditions From Those on the Land
Young dairy farmers are still feeling optimistic about the industry, despite the low payout, and their farms are well set up for winter, that's in both the North and South Islands. [more]

12/06/2015: South Korea forges links at Fieldays
For the first time, South Korean companies are exhibiting together at the National Agricultural Fieldays. [more]

12/06/2015: Gold and Green
Mining for gold on the West Coast has proved successful for Michael Phelps, but now he has decided to protect the remaining native forest on his land from future mining ventures by putting it into covenants. In 1988 Michael and his father Fred bought the 100 hectare bush clad property near Hokitika with a mining licence. They dug a 700 metre long pit out of a steep terrace and extracted gold bearing ground that was processed onsite. Much of the pit has now been backfilled. The land was extensively mined in the 19th century and Michael has discovered tunnels criss-crossing under the ground and many relics from the gold rush era. [more]

19/06/2015: Guest
Lake Brunner dairy farmer Renee Rooney is involved in the Inchbonnie Best Practice Project. [more]

19/06/2015: Regional Wrap
It's been frosty in the North Island while in South most regions have had significant rain. [more]

19/06/2015: Fijian Farming
A group of Fijian dairy farmers has been visiting New Zealand looking at technology and farm management techniques that could be put into practice or adapted to suit their farms. New Zealand's Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade has set up a Fiji Dairy Development Programme that aims to increase milk quality and milk production in Fiji and to increase the prosperity of its dairy farmers. [more]

19/06/2015: QE2 National Trust
The QE 2 National Trust has just celebrated the signing up of the 4000th covenant. The first parcel of land which belonged to a key trust founder, Gordon Stephenson, was signed up in 1979. These days the trust receives more applications for covenants than it can cope with. Its success comes down to landowners joining up voluntarily and retaining sole ownership of the land, while the protection order over the land is in perpetuity. [more]

26/06/2015: Guest
Jill Moorhouse farms up the Whanganui River Road. After last week's torrential rainstorm they're still blocked in by slips and silt smothers their river flats. She and her husband and guests could do nothing but sit inside and watch the river rush across farmland towards them and listen to slips crashing nearby. Helicopters have dropped supplies, taken guests out, as well as a ball gown needed this weekend. [more]

26/06/2015: Regional Wrap
A round up of farming conditions from across New Zealand. [more]

26/06/2015: Angus Bull Sales
An Angus bull has sold for an astonishing 100-thousand dollars at this week's Gisborne bull sales, a record price for a bull sold at an on farm auction. The rising two year old bull was bred by the Rangatira Angus Stud owned by Charles and Susie Dowding. It was sold to the Bayly family of Cricklewood Angus, Wairoa. A livestock market commentator, Barrie Gordon, says it's the third highest all time price paid for an Angus bull in New Zealand. [more]

26/06/2015: Torere Garlic
Claire Belcik grows some of the best garlic you could hope to see on her Torere Bay property in Eastern Bay of Plenty. She also grows beautiful limes and many other crops. [more]

26/06/2015: No 8 Wire National Art Award
Amelia Nurse visits ArtsPost Gallery in Hamilton to look at the finalists' entries for the annual Fieldays No. 8 Wire National Art Award. She talks with winning artist Rebecca Rose from Titirangi and artist and judge Tony Nicholls. [more]

26/06/2015: Tony Nicholls
The 2015 No 8 Wire National Art Award judge talks about his kinetic sound sculptures. [more]

26/06/2015: Rebecca Rose
The winning artist talks about her recent work. [more]

03/07/2015: Guest
Masterton farmer and winner of the Allflex New Zealand Sheep Industry Innovation Award, Matt Wyeth. [more]

03/07/2015: Happy Herd
Thomas and Hannah Oats are contract milking 350 cows for Thomas's parents near Reefton. Much of their enjoyment of dairying comes from the stock, which is reflected in their management practices. The young couple, aged 22 and 21 have recently been crowned the 2015 West Coast/Top of the South Farm Managers of the Year. [more]

03/07/2015: Regional Wrap
Horowhenua Vegetable growers have been struggling to work in extremely wet conditions and across Cook Strait farmers are getting stuck into winter mode. [more]

03/07/2015: Golden Memories
Ross is a sleepy township near Hokitika that was settled in 1865 as a gold mining town. Biddy Manera was born there and has become an outspoken advocate for the community. She looks after the Catholic Church, she's won the battle to save the Ross Cemetery after the Westland District Council mistakenly sold part of it, and she's the driving force behind a project to develop a commemorative garden dedicated to the Chinese gold miners, who came to Ross from Guangdong Province in the 1870's. [more]

10/07/2015: Matt Bell Young Farmer of the Year Winner
Last weekend Mid Canterbury dairy farmer Matt Bell won the National Young Farmer Contest ... this year the three day, annual competition was held in Taupo. Matt says when he was young he really looked up to those farmers competing in the final, and to be finally taking the crown is humbling. He hopes to use the win to speak out about the careers that are possible in the farming industry. [more]

10/07/2015: Regional Wrap
Taranaki and Whanganui hill country farmers are still struggling to cope after storms two weeks ago caused major slipping and floods, bull dozers can't be moved yet to help clear tracks. Meanwhile East Coast farms are in a precarious position with snow down to sea level. [more]

10/07/2015: Hunter for Hire
John Knight reckons he has shot and killed thousands animals during his hunting career. He spent much of it deer culling from helicopters on the West Coast. This involved hanging off the side with a shotgun or dangling on a chain thirty metres below the helicopter with a load of dead animals being carried off a mountain. He decided to call it a day after being involved in a helicopter accident while hunting near Karamea. [more]

10/07/2015: Wairoa Vet
Vet Christine Hahn is used to working on lions, snakes and vultures but now she is turning her attention to working dogs and kunekune pigs. Christine moved to New Zealand earlier this year from South Africa and is now tending animals in the Wairoa region. [more]

10/07/2015: Apples in a Tin
Blocks of new apple trees have been planted in the Wairoa region...but none of the locals or even people overseas will get to crunch on them. The plantings are part of a new venture for fruit and vegetable processing and ingredients company, Cedenco. The Gisborne-based company has contracted a handful of people to grow Braeburn apples purely for processing. It will process the apples using the same equipment as it does for tomato paste. The ingredient will then be used by a New Zealand food manufacturer as a base for its fruit bars. Growers won't be paid as much for their apples as those who grow for export, but because the apples don't have to be perfect, growing and harvesting costs will be lower. [more]

17/07/2015: Guest
Doug Lineham is the project manager of the Dairy Beef Integration Programme. He wants dairy farmers to consider using proven beef sires over their dairy cows to add to their incomes and to 'beef up' the national beef herd. [more]

17/07/2015: Regional Wrap
Temperatures have warmed up, and some welcome rain's arrived in the North Island, although flood affected Whanganui, Taranaki and Manawatu farmers are still carrying the burden of a huge clean up. Meanwhile in the South Island there have been some wicked frosts. [more]

17/07/2015: Young Māori Farmer of the Year - Hannah Wallace
Twenty two year old Hannah Wallace was recently named the Ahuwhenua Young Maori Farmer of the Year. She won the award for her work in the sheep and beef sector but also has a love of dairy farming. Hannah farms near Wairoa. [more]

17/07/2015: Clayton Station
There is no such thing as a dull day for Hamish Orbell at Clayton Station, a diverse, high county farming operation near Fox Peak ski field at the head of the Fairlie basin. Whether he's moving Ewes off the snow covered hills or getting Red deer stags ready for velvet cutting, Hamish is passionate about farming the land that's been in the Orbell family for more than 50 years. Along with sheep, deer and cattle the station supports cash crops of barley, oats and wheat, and a small amount of dairy grazing. [more]

24/07/2015: Guest
International potato industry expert Professor Gary Secor of the Plant Pathology Department at North Dakota State University is a keynote speaker at the The Potatoes NZ Inc. annual conference in Ashburton. [more]

24/07/2015: Regional Wrap
In the North Island there have been some welcome frosts and fine days - they've helped to dry out the ground. In the South, Otago pasture growth is slow due to cold and wet conditions. [more]

24/07/2015: Golden Reflections
John Knight reckons he has shot and killed thousands animals during his hunting career, but decided to call it a day after being involved in a helicopter accident while hunting near Karamea. Once he had recovered from his injuries John bought a boat in Napier and went deep sea fishing, but now he's back on the West Coast and working a black sand gold claim near Harihari. [more]

24/07/2015: Ewe Me and the Lambs
Relda Greenhalgh farms about an hour away from Kawhia, near Mount Pirongia. It's an isolated spot to start with, but she also lives with no phone or power. Her most recent project is breeding from sheep which have some of the multiple birthing Booroola genes, so she can get four to five lambs per ewe. She says other people rear calves, she'll rear the lambs that the ewe can't manage. Along with farming, Relda sings and composes songs. One song about a possum has been accepted onto the NZ Primary School song list. In her earlier years she worked in a circus and did rodeo riding. [more]

31/07/2015: Guest - Mairead Fox
Mairead Fox has won the national women's gumboot throwing title and is off to compete in Italy. [more]

31/07/2015: Regional Wrap
In the North Island calves are arriving thick and fast but in Southland, cows are still coming home from winter grazing. [more]

31/07/2015: First Fruit
Charlie Owen's fruit is ready a few weeks ahead of most other Hawkes Bay orchards, He grows apples, nectarines, apricots, peaches and plums for the domestic market in a micro-climate a few kilometres north of Wairoa. [more]

31/07/2015: Diary Days in Dairy Land
Andrew and Michelle McPherson are 50:50 sharemilkers with 540 cows on a farm south of Hamilton, at Paterangi. Calving is one of the busiest and most stressful times of the year. The first in a year-long series following dairy farming activities. [more]

31/07/2015: Mustering Memories
More than 50 years ago Dave Withers was a musterer on the North Island's vast Ngamatea Station. Musterers and teams of dogs would head out for weeks on end combing the rugged landscape for mobs of sheep. The men would live on weetbix, freshly shot venison and tinned peas. [more]

07/08/2015: Guest
Harihari resident Francina Glass has written a book about her journey through grief and depression after losing her 17 year old daughter. [more]

07/08/2015: Regional Wrap
Nationwide dairy farmers are coping with the dairy payout drop while in the North Island many regions are saturated and water is ponding. In the South Island snow's expected as pre lamb shearing continues. [more]

07/08/2015: Fairlie Bush Furniture
Louise Wynn has been making makes rustic furniture from locally sourced wood for nearly 20 years. Her workshop is in Kimbell, South Canterbury. [more]

07/08/2015: Frightful Floods
Seven weeks ago severe flooding affected many areas in the lower half of the western North Island. Many farmers are still picking up the pieces, especially in the Whanganui/South Taranaki region. It was a devastating event. Farm tracks and bridges were washed away, silt metres deep smothers valuable grazing flats, and some will be left struggling for years. Beef and Lamb New Zealand says inside the farm gate the flood's cost 81 million dollars in lost production and infrastructure repairs. (topics] rural, farming [more]

14/08/2015: Guest - Patrick Malley
Patrick Malley was 2014's Young Horticulturist of the Year. The Whangarei avocado and kiwifruit grower has recently returned from drought-stricken California where he has been looking at fruit production there. [more]

14/08/2015: Regional Wrap
Frosty conditions have slowed grass growth in the Taihape region, a Wairarapa sharemilker is staying as positive as possible, kiwifruit growers are still winter pruning, Nelson apple and pear orchardists are also pruning and an Otago cherry grower was dealing with minus seven and eight degrees this week as he fixed netting knocked down in snow earlier in winter. [more]

14/08/2015: Down at the Beach
Birdling's Flat is an iconic coastal settlement on Banks Peninsula's Kaitorete Spit with a mixture of holiday and permanent low cost homes. It is well known for its gemstones and eeling and it is one of the windiest spots in New Zealand. Over the past several years, subdivisions have been developed and the character of the area has started to change. It has also been in the spotlight recently after a nearby paddock was chosen by Auckland-based Rocket Lab as its preferred launch site for satellite transport rockets. Cosmo Kentish-Barnes meets local residents Ian Robertson, Alison Walker, Ross Le Compte, Selwyn Barry and Larissa Dunn to find out who they are, why they live at Birdling's Flat and what they think of the gradual modernisation of their township. [more]

14/08/2015: My first fieldays
This year is the 21st year that Fieldays has hosted the Ag Art Wear competition, where entrants must create wearable art from materials sourced on the farm. The judges this year were fashion designer Robyn Brooks, founder of Ooby Ryn in Cambridge, and sculptor Adrian Worsley of Historic Creations in Te Aroha. Amelia Nurse met with judge Adrian at Fieldays before the event for a chat. [more]

21/08/2015: Regional Wrap
Around the country North Island farms are generally pretty short of pasture after a more typical, colder winter, while in the south lambing and calving is underway. [more]

21/08/2015: Oaklands
A Nelson farm owned by the same family since European settlement is still going strong, despite wars, politics and all kinds of weather. Nelson reporter Tracy Neal went for a walk around Oaklands with its most senior guardian, Richard Raine, his daughter Nikki and son-in-law Jeremy Cooper. [more]

21/08/2015: Young Grower of the Year
The winners of five regional competitions compete for the national title of 2015 Young Grower of the Year in Christchurch. During the final, contestants face a series of practical and theoretical challenges designed to replicate those faced in an orchard or on-farm working environment. [more]

21/08/2015: Get in Behind - a Shepherd's Tale
Anita Kendrick is a shepherd on an 1,800 hectare North Island station. In her spare time she trains working dogs and breeds border collies. Anita also has a broken back. The farm bike she was riding landed on top of her in October 2011. She was 18. It wasn't clear whether Anita would be able to continue working as a shepherd, but with a modified farm vehicle and a huge amount of determination Anita is back doing what she does best. [more]

28/08/2015: Guest Phil Journeaux
Agricultural consultant Phil Journeaux says in the past ten years dairy farmers, on average, have made $2100 a hectare compared with sheep and beef farmers who've made just $100 a hectare. At present however the dairy earnings will be dropping to negative $250 a hectare. [more]

28/08/2015: Regional Wrap
Houses will soon be sprawling over vegetable producing land around Pukekohe, banks in Northland are advising some dairy farmers to sell up, while in the South Island frosts are keeping soil temperatures low and many sheep farmers are shearing ewes prior to lambing. [more]

28/08/2015: Kevin Ikin Remembers
After thirty years covering rural happenings for Radio New Zealand National Kevin Ikin is retiring. He says his best memories are the wonderful, resourceful, feet on the ground, farming people he's met. [more]

28/08/2015: Father of the Modern Romney
Holmes Warren is described as " the father of the modern Romney", the breed which is the base of the New Zealand flock. In the 1950's ad 1960's when others bred for wool, Holmes was breeding for twinning and easy care lambing. He was a shrewd observer of stock and a man ahead of his time. In 1970, Homes started the Wairarapa Romney Improvement group. He has just been awarded the 2015 New Zealand Sheep Industry Lifetime Achievement Award with the judges acknowledging the strong influence his work still has on today's national flock. [more]

28/08/2015: Oashore
Ecological protection goes hand in hand with farming at a 550 hectare coastal property on Banks Peninsula. Cosmo Kentish-Barnes meets Oashore farm manager Kate Whyte, who has safeguarded the last pockets of podocarp forest and de-stocked much of the hill country farm. The rugged land leads down to three isolated bays that were used as whaling stations in the 19th century. Nowadays the bays are home to a penguin protection programme and a shipwreck in the sand is a reminder of the dangers the whalers once faced. [more]

04/09/2015: Regional Wrap
Manawatu is awash and farmers have had enough. Southland farmers are also looking longingly for the sun. [more]

04/09/2015: Searching Te Urewera
Over the past 50 years farmer Dave Withers has taken part in hundreds of search and rescue missions in the Urewera National Park. There were no radios in the early days and it would often take longer to find the rescue teams to tell them the search was over than to track down the missing person. [more]

04/09/2015: Fossick in Fairlie
Macgregor Willis, a 16 year old student at Mackenzie College, took over a vacant shop on Fairlie's Main Street and turned it into a natural history museum that's now home to his impressive collection of fossils. [more]

04/09/2015: Tools to Take Home
The Katikati community is rallying around its Ni Vanuatu workers. They're in New Zealand working on local orchards and in a packhouse but at home their families are dealing with the aftermath of Cyclone Pam. People from the western Bay of Plenty have donated tools, building materials and household goods to send to Vanuatu. One container load has already arrived and a second is due to leave New Zealand in mid-September. (topics] rural, [more]

11/09/2015: Guest
Sarah Crofoot was at the global Youth Ag Summit in Canberra with six other young delegates from New Zealand. [more]

11/09/2015: Regional Wrap
Spring, in the few North Island regions where it had tentatively started, came to a halt this week, while in the South Island, lambing and calving is in full swing. [more]

11/09/2015: A photographer like Alice
Alice Mabin is the Asia Pacific's Female Entrepreneur of the Year. She's a New Zealander who now roams the Australian outback taking photographs and publishing them. Alice was on horseback for five months at the end of 2013 photographing Australia's biggest cattle drive in more than 100 years. Eighteen-thousand cattle were walked 2000km to their new home. Alice was in New Zealand recently promoting her book that documents the journey [more]

11/09/2015: Wool Innovation
Cosmo Kentish-Barnes meets textile design students at Massey University who are developing innovative new ways with wool. [more]

18/09/2015: Guest
Wools of New Zealand chairman Mark Shadbolt. Wools of New Zealand is the latest of an increasing number of organisations turning to world-leading traceability technology from Dunedin-based company Oritain to strengthen the credibility and integrity of their products and combat unethical behaviour. [more]

18/09/2015: Mite-y biocontrol
Landcare Research biocontrol scientists Ronny Groenteman and Bob Brown are looking at the potential of a mite discovered in some wasp nests to be a biocontrol agent to reduce wasp numbers in New Zealand. [more]

18/09/2015: Longbush Free Range Pork and The Prodigal Daughter
An American couple, Naya Brangenberg and Jeremy Wilhelm, have settled in Wairarapa and turned a hobby of running rare breed pigs into a full scale, free range system supplying specialty outlets and chefs, with pork. One of the clients is Rachel Priestley of The Prodigal Daughter. She makes a range of salumi, cured, spiced pork products, with some of them taking many months to cure to perfection. She also runs cooking classes, including sausage making. [more]

25/09/2015: Irish Dairy Farmers Feeling Militant
James Campbell writes for the Farmers Journal in Ireland and says dairy farmers in the north and the south of Ireland are feeling militant and want the minimum price for milk to be raised. Many are losing tens of thousands of pounds this year. [more]

25/09/2015: Regional Wrap
There was torrential rain on the North Island's east coast this week, and despite the lamb losses, farmers aren't complaining. Streams and wells had dried up so the rain will help replenish them. Some areas of parched North Canterbury had rain this week, but a lot more is needed, and some missed out altogether. [more]

25/09/2015: Bird Rescue
Dawne Morton is "The Bird Woman of Whanganui". She's been part of the Bird Rescue Centre near the city for nearly thirty years. Every year over a thousand mainly native birds are nursed back to full recovery after breaking wings, elbows, legs and breast bones. The vets at Massey's Wild Base do the bandaging and X rays, Dawne and a team of other volunteers do the rehab. [more]

25/09/2015: The Bottom Line
Two generations of the Craw family farm together on a collection of seven blocks of coastal hill country on the north eastern reaches of Banks Peninsula. Their passion and farming expertise has been recognised at this year's Canterbury Ballance Farm Environment Awards. Hamish, Annabel, Alastair and Sue Craw have won the Beef and Lamb New Zealand Livestock Award, the Hill Laboratories Harvest Award and the PGG Wrightson Land and Life Award. The Craws have also joined the Beef and Lamb New Zealand Demonstration Farm Programme with a new project to find out if high quality forage can be grown on uncultivable hill country [more]

02/10/2015: Guest - Jen Scoular
New Zealand Avocado chief executive Jen Scoular attended the World Avocado Congress in Peru. [more]

02/10/2015: Regional Wrap
Five people from the land talk about farming conditions in their region, including one million apples trees have been planted in Hawkes Bay this season and in Canterbury tailing is in full swing. [more]

02/10/2015: Tracing the Stencil
The use and significance of the New Zealand wool bale stencil from colonial times to the present day. Annette O'Sullivan's research is piecing together the story of why the stencil became a shipping mark for bales of wool. [more]

02/10/2015: The Simpsons of Simpson's Beach
Peter Simpson moved onto his Coromandel farm as a three month old in 1927. Peter, his father and brother broke in much of their land with a horse and plough. In the ensuing decades it's been a dairy farm and a sheep farm but these days, cattle graze the paddocks. Peter's now 88 and every day, you'll find him out working on the land. Meanwhile his beach-front paddock remains open to campers. They've been welcomed on to the Simpson's property for more than 80 years. [more]

09/10/2015: Proud to Be a Farmer
Shane McManaway is spear-heading a campaign to showcase farming's 'good stories'. [more]

09/10/2015: Regional Wrap
The grass is growing in Bay of Plenty and for many dairy herds mating is underway. In the South Island high winds added to the excitement of tailing on farms in the Otago lakes district. [more]

09/10/2015: On a Knife's Edge
Some days up to 100 people see Lloyd Franklin's sign and pull in to have a chat to him at his Kuaotunu property. Lloyd hand forges knives. He's been doing it for 29 years now and he sells them around the world. The knives start as a piece of a car spring….then it's hours and hours of painstaking, hot and sometimes dangerous work to craft them into a well-balanced, flexible, durable and extremely sharp 'one-off' knife. [more]

09/10/2015: On a Knife's Edge
Some days up to 100 people see Lloyd Franklin's sign and pull in to have a chat to him at his Kuaotunu property. Lloyd hand forges knives. He's been doing it for 29 years now and he sells them around the world. The knives start as a piece of a car spring… then it's hours and hours of painstaking, hot and sometimes dangerous work to craft them into a well-balanced, flexible, durable and extremely sharp 'one-off' knife. [more]

09/10/2015: Blockhill
Motivated by the converging problems of environmental degradation, over population, peak oil and climate change, Olmec and Melisa Sinclair employ permaculture principals to develop resilient solutions for food production, shelter, energy and water on their property near Cheviot. [more]

16/10/2015: Regional Wrap
Peak milk production is approaching in the North Island and in the South Island warmer days and higher soil temperatures have increased pasture and crop growth rates. [more]

16/10/2015: Feeling Trapped
Ten years ago Robbie van Dam, Stu Barr and Craig Bond were nerdy university students making chairs and other creative pieces. They all had an interest is New Zealand's declining biodiversity, and after Robbie had a summer time job lugging heavy pest traps through dense bush for DOC, they decided things could be better. [more]

16/10/2015: The Apprentice
Seventeen-year old Louisa McClintock has left school so she can learn about farming from her grandfather Graham McClintock on his sheep and beef farm near Cheviot. [more]

16/10/2015: Mating Time
For six weeks there will be a daily visit from an Artificial Insemination, or Breeding (AI or AB) technician with pistolettes of bull semen. Mating is the most important time on the farm because the whole system hangs around the calving date. It dictates how many days of milking there are a year. [more]

23/10/2015: Recovery Slow for Nepalese Farmers
Pitambar Sigdel writes for a daily newspaper in Kathmandu, Nepal. He's just been in NZ with other international agricultural journalists and he talks about the impact the April 2015 earthquake has had on the country's farmers. 10,000 people died in the quake, 90% of them worked in the agricultural sector. [more]

23/10/2015: Regional Wrap - with farmers on the land
Strong winds have been drying out North Island farms. In the South Island weaning is underway on North Canterbury farms. [more]

23/10/2015: The Real Dirt On Farming
Farm and Food Care Ontario is a non-lobby, farming organisation with an advocacy and outreach role covering the entire country. It's funded by all the different farming sectors and agri-businesses, with a mandate to tell the public about where their food comes from. It publishes a magazine called The Real Dirt on Farming, where the concerns and questions consumers have about their food are answered in a matter of fact way. The organisation is also heavily into social media. It has 10 thousand twitter followers and a recent "Twitter Party" trended in the top spot for the hour it was on. Manager Kelly Daynard says it's thrilling to see consumers tweeting questions about their food and within minutes farmers are responding. [more]

23/10/2015: Outside the Wire
Prisoners at the Otago Corrections Facility near Milton are being trained in agriculture skills. The Facility has a dairy farm where prisoners milk about 350 cows on the 123 hectare property that the facility has owned for eight years. The farm is expected to make money for Treasury and meet prisoner training targets which can be challenge for the farm instructors. The farms milk production is above the local average and each cow produced 400 kilograms of milk solids in the 2013/14 season. (topics] rural, farming [more]

30/10/2015: Visa Issues
[image:51795:full] Filipino dairy workers are dealing with long delays in getting their visas renewed due to the investigation currently underway into fake documents. [audio_play] [more]

30/10/2015: Regional Wrap
The North Island all regions are short on moisture and drying, cool winds have kept growth slow, in the South Island lambs are going for processing in increasing numbers at less than ideal weights. [more]

30/10/2015: Rural Raconteur
South Otago sheep farmer Ross Agnew, known for his protest song Fart Tax Blues, has published a collection of his poetry in a new book called Farmyard Blues. [more]

30/10/2015: Whitianga Philanthropy
Whitianga is a beautiful seaside town on the Coromandel peninsula. Geographically it's an isolated, rural community more than an hour's drive from its nearest service centre. And while it may look like paradise, the community is just like any other, with its share of people who need social support. For more than 45 years Whitianga's Social Services trust has been providing a 'safety net' for the people in its community; offering services and programmes for children, youth, families and for older people. (topics] rural [more]

05/11/2015: Farmyard Blues
Last week after Cosmo's story about poet and farmer Ross Agnew we had competition to win two copies of his latest book called Farmyard Blues. There was a great response to the question “what was the graffiti painted onto in the first poem?" and the answer was the water tank. The winners are Jules Hughes from Rotorua and Peter Baker from Otautau in Southland. [more]

06/11/2015: Guest - Katie Milne
It's been a good year for West Coast farmer Katie Milne; first she was named Dairy Woman of the Year and this week won the rural category in the Women of Influence awards. [more]

06/11/2015: Regional Wrap
The east coast of the North Island's had marvellous rain, and everywhere had a big temperature dip mid week. In the South Island cow mating is in full swing. [more]

06/11/2015: Stinging in the Rain
Nelson-based Richard Toft has won a Conservation Innovation award from the World Wildlife Fund for his development of Vespex, an award-winning New Zealand designed wasp bait aimed at decimating the pest's population. [more]

06/11/2015: Breeding Beauties
Ivan Fredrickson and his daughter Kylee Perrett have a favourite subject....Ayrshire cows. The red and white dairy cows make up just one percent of the national herd but for Ivan and Kylee they're the ultimate cow. Ivan has been farming Ayrshires since he was a boy and has built up a pedigree herd now owned and milked by Kylee and her husband Danny. They're the proud owners of last year's North Island Champion cow. [more]

06/11/2015: Food for Thought
When Bruce and Denise McGill began farming organically 30 years ago they found that stock were just as healthy and production levels could be maintained, but they quickly learnt that the organic system requires greater management skills because there is not the flexibility of using a chemical product to fix a problem. Now their 900 hectare property near Owaka in South Otago runs over 4500 sheep and breeding cows. After processing, most of the lamb goes to the UK and because they farm on hard hill country, the weaner calves go to organic finishers and are eventually sold to organic meat markets around the world. (topics] rural, farming [more]

13/11/2015: Canterbury A & P Association
  Retired Banks Peninsula farmer Nicky Hutchinson has become the first woman in 153 years to be president of the Canterbury A&P Association. [more]

13/11/2015: Regional Wrap
Cattle sales are buoyant on the East Coast following good rains while in Bay of Plenty silage is mainly being shut up on run-off blocks because of the dry. In the South Island orcharding regions were out fighting frosts as the week ended and in North Canterbury many farmers are facing a cash loss for the second year. [more]

13/11/2015: UK Supermarket Wars
Price wars between the major UK supermarket chains are hurting British lamb producers, so their normally reasonably accepting attitude towards New Zealand lamb imports is turning more aggressive. [more]

13/11/2015: The Day before the Fete
One of New Zealand's biggest Fêtes, in Culverden, attracts more than 5000 people from all over the world, eager to spend a great day out in the countryside. The idea behind this Christmas Fête, that started 24 years ago, was to supplement the incomes of rural people in the area at time when farming was in the doldrums. It was the brainchild of local farmers Lou Davison, Fiz Rutherford, Sue Gardner and Jossy Davison and for the last several years it's been held in the elegant gardens at Wynyard Farm on Lowry Peaks Road. The Fête has gone from having 30 to more than 200 stalls and now it showcases talented crafts people, artists and food and wine producers from all over the country. [more]

13/11/2015: Valuable Insights
Stories about New Zealand's clean and green image and farming without subsidies will be headlines in overseas media following a recent visit by ten young international journalists. In New Zealand last month as part of a study tour arranged by the New Zealand Guild of Agricultural Journalists and Communicators, the group spent a week looking at Waikato farms and hearing from agri-business leaders. [more]

20/11/2015: Whenua Kura
Renata Hakiwai is the manager of the Whenua Kura programme which is aiming to develop Maori leadership in the agricultural sector. It's a partnership between Te Tapuae o Rehua, Ngai Tahu Farming and Lincoln University. It's offering full fee scholarships for dairy, sheep and beef, horticulture courses and a diploma in agriculture and farm management... from levels 3 to 6, starting in February next year. [more]

20/11/2015: Regional Wrap
Bulls are finally putting on weight in Manawatu after a long, miserable winter and in the south Marlborough farmers are getting ready for a dry summer. [{topics] rural, farming [more]

20/11/2015: A Waikato Wetland Project
Dairy NZ, in association with a number of other organisations has developed a two hundred and fifty thousand dollar wetland project on a Waikato farm. It aims to showcase two types of wetlands, naturally occurring seepage ones, and deliberately built ones with different depths of ponds and plants. Over two years a raft of data will be collected and made available to farmers in the hope they will be able to use wetlands as a nutrient filtering tool to help improve water quality. [more]

20/11/2015: Country Comes To Town
Cosmo Kentish-Barnes is at the Canterbury A&P Show where he discovers duck herding, visits a sheep maternity ward, wanders through "Camp Gallipoli" and finds out about the Canterbury excavator operator championship, that's being held in a paddock on the edge of the showgrounds. He also meets visiting cattle and sheep judges from Uruguay, Australia and America. (topics] rural, farming [more]

27/11/2015: Guest
Michelle Thompson is Chief Executive of the Rural Health Alliance Aotearoa New Zealand (RHANZ). The Alliance is working with rural health professionals and industry and community groups on suicide prevention strategies and to break down the urban/rural divide. [more]

27/11/2015: Regional Wrap
The cherry harvest has started in Hawkes Bay and all North Island regions are feeling a little better after good rain last weekend. At the top of the South Island, the huge forest fire In Marlborough is an indication of just how dry conditions are with summer not yet started. [more]

27/11/2015: Wairuna Organics
Shaun McVicker grows certified organic vegetables on his fertile property in Clinton, South Otago. Originally a derelict sheep farm when he bought it 14 years ago, Shaun has successfully converted it into a well organised market garden that now grows over 60 varieties of chemical free vegetables. [more]

27/11/2015: Tea Tree and Touch Downs
Nicholas Murray Leslie's had a long and varied career, from herd tester to bulldozer driver to commercial airline pilot. These days you will find him on his organic farm in Whitianga producing tea tree oil that's sold to the world. (topics] rural, farming [more]

04/12/2015: Guest - Dr Warren Hughes
The National Agricultural Fieldays injected $396 million into the national economy this year. Dr Warren Hughes has been analysing the figures [{topics] rural, farming [more]

04/12/2015: Regional Wrap
It's been a warm week around the country. The avocado harvest is half way through and cherries are coming off trees in Marlborough. [more]

04/12/2015: Diary of a Dairy Farm - Silage Making
Farmers make silage when they have an abundance of grass. It's stored in stacks or in plastic bales and is dished out to cows when feed's short. Andrew McPherson made silage this week on his Waikato farm. [more]

04/12/2015: Nuts about Koura
Jan and Roy Johnstone's small farm in South Otago's Puerua Valley was owned by Jan's uncle before they bought it thirty years ago and they've been planting native and food producing trees there ever since. Now over 600 mature hazelnut trees yield up to five kilos of nuts a season that are sold at local farmers markets. They also run a flock of Perendale sheep and farm freshwater crayfish in ten swampy ponds. Fifteen years ago Jan and Roy obtained resource consent to collect up to 1000 crayfish from local ditches and waterways as starter stock and, although it hasn't been the commercial success they were hoping for, they do get to enjoy the fruits of their labour. [more]

11/12/2015: Vines and Wines
North Canterbury winemaker Guy Porter grows grapes on a gravel terrace above the Waipara River and on a clay slope a few kilometres further north. Both vineyards are now managed in compliance with the organic requirements of BioGro New Zealand. The last five years have been tough for Guy due to a strong dollar that has made exporting difficult and a sluggish local economy, so he has been selling grapes and bulk wine as well bottling his own Bellbird Spring label to ensure the vineyard remains viable. [more]

11/12/2015: Housing vs Horticulture
The productive soils around Pukekohe, just south of Auckland are in high demand; from vegetable growers who have been growing on the fertile soils for generations and for housing. There's pressure on the Auckland Council to carve up the land for development, but what would that mean for vegetable production? (topics] rural, farming [more]

18/12/2015: Industry Retro: Sheep, Beef, Deer
Sheep farmers have had a less than average year but beef finishers are smiling. Every cloud has a velvet lining. The state of the deer industry with Deer Industry New Zealand Chief Executive Dan Coup. [more]

18/12/2015: Peony Potential
Georgia Richard's early ambition was to one day live in the country and grow culinary herbs. Instead she and partner Dot Kettle run in Dovedale near Motueka which is a blooming peony venture. Dove River Peonies began as a business growing export grade flowers, and has blossomed into a brand based on the use of peony root in soaps, skin creams and even tea blends. They grow 21 different varieties of the ancient flower species on a four-hectare block of river flat. [more]

18/12/2015: Industry Retro: Kiwifruit Dairy Forestry
There's a huge contrast this year between the fortunes of kiwifruit and cows. Kiwifruit orchardists are receiving good returns on a high volume crop in April and May. Dairy farmers are still struggling with low milk prices so they've cut back on spending on most items except fertiliser. The trees are growing but is the forestry industry? The New Zealand Forest Owners Association's technical manager Glen Mackie sums up the year that's been. [more]

18/12/2015: Making Bacon
In 2014 Havoc Pork moved its processing operation from Waimate, where the Havoc farm runs 800 free-range pigs, to Dunedin when Cain Lindegreen took over the family business from his mother Linda McCallum-Jackson. The award-winning company has been gradually expanding; a decade ago Linda was selling pork products from one pig each week at the Otago Farmers Market, now Cain is processing 35 pigs a week and as Christmas approaches, it's all hands on deck in the salami, smoked bacon and ham-making departments. (topics] rural [more]

18/12/2015: Industry Retro: Pipfruit and Wine
Apple growers have had a top year, which comes on the heels of two previous good seasons, so confidence is high especially with apples from protected varieties like Jazz Envy and Honey Crisp. Grape growers are feeling birght about their industry. [more]

25/12/2015: Country Life Summer Edition Saturday December 26, 2016
A selection of some of the best Country Life stories from 2015. In this episode: Golden Reflections, Ponds of Gold and Woosters of Orira [more]

01/01/2016: Country Life Summer Edition January 2
A selection of some of the best Country Life stories from 2015. In this episode: Golden Reflections, Ponds of Gold and Woosters of Orira. [more]

08/01/2016: Country Life Summer Edition Saturday, January 9, 2016
A selection of some of the best Country Life stories from 2015. In this episode: Auntsfield Estate, Torere Garlic and Benneydale Beckoning. [more]

15/01/2016: Country Life Summer Edition Saturday, January 16, 2016
A selection of some of the best Country Life stories from 2015. In this episode: Sovrano Limoncello, A Photographer Like Alice and Golden Memories [more]

22/01/2016: Regional Wrap
All areas of the North Island have had rain this month, and many are looking exceptionally good for mid summer. The big news in Canterbury this week is rain. Most areas including the drought affected parts of North Canterbury received between 25 and 50 millimetres of the wet stuff. [more]

22/01/2016: Country Life Friday January 22 2016
Country Life meets Andreea Misescu who grew up in an apartment in communist Romania surrounded by concrete. Now she spends her days tending lush avocado trees on her orchard in Katikati. Andreea, her husband Alin and two young sons moved to New Zealand a few years ago and are loving country life. Wyn and Chris Daniell have one of the biggest macadamia orchards in New Zealand. They have almost 1000 trees and harvest nuts nine months of the years at their property on the edge or Tauranga harbour. also, winning poultry prizes is becoming a habit for 27-year-old duck breeder Richard Price, who rears his quacky birds on a 12 acre lifestyle block in Mosgiel. [more]

22/01/2016: Barefeet and Avocados
Andreea Misescu grew up in an apartment in communist Romania surrounded by concrete. Now she spends her days tending lush avocado trees on her orchard in Katikati. Andreea, her husband Alin and two young sons moved to New Zealand a few years ago and are loving country life. [more]

22/01/2016: Duck for cover!
Winning poultry prizes is becoming a habit for 27-year-old duck breeder Richard Price, who rears his quacky birds on a 12 acre lifestyle block in Mosgiel. Last year his Pekin drake won ''best duck in show'' at the Dunedin Poultry Show and one of his beloved Indian Runner ducks won the runner-up prize at the Nationals in Oamaru. Richard and the pick of his 2016 flock will be back on the competition circuit in May at the Heartland Poultry Show in Timaru. [more]

22/01/2016: Cracking the Hard Nut
Wyn and Chris Daniell have one of the biggest macadamia orchards in New Zealand. They have almost 1000 trees and harvest nuts nine months of the years at their property on the edge or Tauranga harbour. [Tags] Harbourside Macadamias, Katikati, Macadamia Nuts, horticulture [more]

29/01/2016: Regional Wrap
All areas of the North Island have had rain this month, and many are looking exceptionally good for mid summer. Stock are in good condition in South Island and the grass is growing but sheep farmers are facing tumbling lamb prices. [more]

29/01/2016: Guest
Thirty Waikato secondary school students have been attending a course at Waikato University to learn about opportunities in agriculture. [more]

29/01/2016: Bio Dynamic Bert
Bert van Heuckelum has been told he could plant a broomstick and it would grow. The green-fingered Katikati orchardist left Holland in 1983. His dream was to live self-sufficiently in New Zealand. [more]

29/01/2016: Heading down the Waimak
Large schools of kahawai are chasing krill in the Waimakariri River mouth in North Canterbury. The annual salmon run is about to start so it's a popular spot for local anglers. Fish and Game councillor Peter Robinson's been fishing at the river mouth since he was a boy and back then the water suffered badly from factory pollution. Today, intensive farming practices and irrigation are impacting on the quality and flow of the river. [more]

05/02/2016: Fleecing It
Angora goats were supposedly the investors dream back in the 1980's. Mid way through the decade however the industry crashed, fingers were burnt and goats got a bad name. But some people hung in there, and they, plus a small number of other enthusiasts who've got into goats, say angoras have a great future. They clip one hundred dollars of fibre a year, and there's potential for that to double if they provide longer fibre that's required for woven fabric, rather than knitting products as they do at present. Recently an Australian based, South African expert, visited New Zealand and shared his knowledge on how New Zealand farmers can hit the $50 plus dollars a kilo for fibre [Tags] mohair, fibre, angora goats [more]

12/02/2016: Beside the Te Araroa Walkway
The three thousand kilometre walkway from Cape Reinga to Bluff runs beside Sam Adams' isolated King Country farm. He's amazed at the number of people doing the trail over summer. Walkers need about seven days of food for this leg so he helps out with water and the odd mutton chop. [more]

12/02/2016: Regional Wrap
Central parts of Waikato are starting to look quite dry, but elsewhere a lot of the North Island is still quite green. The South Island's east coast is generally holding up well with enough moisture to keep things fresh. Dropping lamb prices are affecting all sheep farmers. [more]

12/02/2016: Hydrangeas - Export Beauties
A chance comment by US TV personality Martha Stewart about twenty years ago, got Jane Bryant into growing hydrangeas. These old fashioned multi coloured flowers are in demand internationally, especially in the United States, South East Asia and the Middle East. Jane's Bay of Plenty property is humming at this time of year as bright pink flowers are needed to fill Valentine's Day orders. [more]

12/02/2016: NZ Bloom - Flower Exporter
New Zealand has about ten flower exporting companies, with three or four doing the bulk of the trade. NZ Bloom is one of them and managing director David Ballard says it's a competitive, fascinating business to be in. In the past 15 years hydrangeas have become a stable export flower going to the United States, SE Asia and the Middle East. He filled one order for a Saudi Arabian wedding which needed forty thousand purple hydrangea heads. [more]

12/02/2016: One Man's Dream
Rod Millen is a New Zealand and international motor racing champion who has lived in the United States since 1978. He now commutes every two weeks between California and Hahei in the Coromandel . Rod grew up on a farm in New Zealand and is now combining his love of rural life here with his love for motor racing. He's bought a farm and each year hosts the Leadfoot Festival on it. It's a festival of speed and driving. Drivers come from all over New Zealand and from overseas to scream up a hill climb course, that for 363 other days of the year, doubles as the farm's driveway. [Tags] motor racing, Leadfoot Festival, classic cars [more]

19/02/2016: Dairy Recruitment John Fegan
Some dairy farmers have been laying off staff as they look at ways to reduce costs. [more]

19/02/2016: Regional Wrap
Horowhenua at last has had some rain, it's been a terribly trying February, but now facial eczema spores are rocketing away. In the South Island useful rain has fallen in some areas and hot dry days have enabled cropping farmers to get harvesting done. [more]

19/02/2016: Forage to Feast
Sixty food and wine lovers spend a morning picking, foraging, digging, fishing and even shooting a host of foods in the Waipara Valley. In the afternoon eight top chefs convert the fresh bounty into unique dishes that are matched with locally grown wines for all to enjoy at Pegasus Bay Winery. [more]

19/02/2016: Dairy Series: Pregnancy Testing
Ask Robin Yeoman what he likes about being a dairy cow pregnancy scanner and he says, "the money". Then, more seriously, he says meeting all the farmers, chatting to them, and driving around the country side. Robin spends five months a year putting his hand up the rear end of a cow and reading an ultra sound scan of the uterus to see if the animal's pregnant, and if she is, how many months. He's pregnancy testing about 160 young cows which Waikato farmer Andrew McPherson has had grazing on a King Country farm for just over a year. Grazing stock off-farm is a system which works well, allowing Andrew to run more adult cows at home in his milking herd, and giving the King Country grazier, who is a sheep and beef farmer, an extra source of monthly income. Prices are worked out on a per head, per week basis. [more]

19/02/2016: Foreign Correspondent - Finland
Asko Miettinen farms 40 cows in Finland. Milk prices to farmers have dropped 25 per cent. [more]

19/02/2016: Forage to Feast (Part 2)
Sixty food and wine lovers spend a morning picking, foraging, digging, fishing and even shooting a host of foods in the Waipara Valley. In the afternoon eight top chefs convert the fresh bounty into unique dishes that are matched with locally grown wines for all to enjoy at Pegasus Bay Winery. [more]

26/02/2016: Reel NZ Life
Jane Paul is the Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision's community programme co-ordinator for the Reel Life in Rural New Zealand Woolshed Tour. [more]

26/02/2016: Regional Wrap
North Island farmers are hoping for rain this weekend. In the South Island some West Coast dairy farmers have moved down to once a day milking. [more]

26/02/2016: Moxie's Cheese
Ten years ago American city folks Antonia and Peter Murphy sailed to New Zealand where they now live on a small farm near Whangarei and raise two children and 40 assorted animals. Antonia's started to make her own goats' cheeses, the 'smelly, runny ones' that she loves and, for the first time, she's entered them in the New Zealand Cheese Awards this week in Auckland. [more]

26/02/2016: A River Runs Through It
Sustainable farm forestry and agricultural techniques, including the careful management of water resources are central to Peter and Jane Evans' farming operation near Timaru. The Pareora River runs for six kilometres through the 1,000 hectare property and most of it is now fenced off. They've also established a natural buffer zone of trees and native bush to prevent run-off. After purchasing Mount Horrible in 1989, the Evans' established a pine plantation to control the gorse on the hill country block and, in a few years time, it's expected to provide a good return per hectare. [more]

04/03/2016: Fiji - On The Land after Cyclone Winston
Horticulture consultant Kyle Stice says it will be many months before crops devastated by Cyclone Winston in Fiji are back in production. [more]

04/03/2016: Seed Saving for Cyclones
Sant Kumar has a nursery in Nadi and has managed to protect his plants from two devastating cyclones. When word comes through that a cyclone is approaching, he unclips and folds away his shade cloth and runs trays of seedlings into racks in shipping containers. He's already back in business following Cyclone Winston. [more]

04/03/2016: Regional Wrap
Wairarapa has been sweltering while down south the ram is out on early country. [more]

04/03/2016: Spinning the Wheel
In 1940 Walter Ashford started making spinning wheels and weaving looms. 76 years on his son Richard and his wife Elizabeth Ashford are still running the family business that has made over 500,000 spinning wheels and 300,000 weaving looms. [more]

04/03/2016: Kaimanawa King
Rockstar was rounded up in the 2014 Kaimanawa muster. Three weeks later the four-year-old wild horse had a rider on his back. He then went on to win the Kaimanawa Heritage Stallion Challenge; a competition to highlight the breed and to show how trainers can work wonders with the feral horses. [more]

04/03/2016: Gumboots - Finding New Zealand's Oldest Pair
The Country Life team is on the hunt for New Zealand's oldest pair of gumboots. Most farmers attending the Kauroa Weaner sale near Raglan agreed that one or two years was their oldest pair. However one farmer reckons he has 40 year old ones, they belonged to his grandfather and are lurking "under rubbish somewhere at home." Tell us how old your boots are, and the most interesting place they've been worn. Write to us at: Country Life, PO Box 9490, Hamilton 3240 or email: [more]

04/03/2016: Sheep Milking with Landcorp
Landcorp, in a joint venture partnership, has set up a sheep milking farm called Spring Sheep Dairy on the Central Plateau. Three thousand East Friesians have been milked this season with nearly all the milk ending up as a high value nutritional product in Taiwan. Those working with the sheep say they're friendly and calm and happily walk into the milking parlour to get their daily top up feed. The sheep are slightly more difficult to shear with their big udders, and weighing in at 100 kilos they're nearly twice the weight of normal sheep. Shearer Chad Hopkins says it will take about six days to get through the flock, and it's hard work, "but give us a few beers and we'll be happy." [more]

11/03/2016: James Allen - Dairy Farmer Meetings
At a series of farmer meetings around the country, sharemilkers and the farm owners are being given possible strategies to help them cope with the massive dairy payout drop. About 50 farmers attended the first meeting where James Allen said many were resigned to having another tough year on the farm, but weren't talking of leaving the industry. However one lower order sharemilker said he was having to leave because it was too tight financially to keep going. [more]

11/03/2016: Regional Wrap
Southern North Island coastal areas on both the west and east coast are extremely dry, and many South Island areas desperately need water too. [more]

11/03/2016: New Zealand's Oldest Gumboots: Part Two
Country Life is on the hunt for New Zealand's oldest gumboots. The oldest so far appear to be 64 or 65 years old, but today's stories cover the Dutch version of a gumboot, and a pair that would be around 40 years old that have travelled far. There are two pairs of Skellerup gumboots to give away before Easter in honour of the quest for the oldest gumboots. [more]

11/03/2016: Dairy Payout Demoralising
Sharemilking couple Andrew and Michelle McPherson have a 540 cow herd on a farm near Te Awamutu in Waikato. With this week's massive milk solids payout drop to three dollars 90 a kilo of milksolids, their hopes to move up and purchase a farm this year have been dashed. Michelle says "we're holding our dream of farm ownership loosely .... I believe in my heart we'll get onto land eventually, but at the moment we're holding that loosely". She says if land prices did fall it would provide an opportunity, but they'd need to buy a farm as an equity partnership. "As far as buying land on our own at the moment, that has gone". Michelle and Andrew use their entire milk cheque for on- farm working expenses, there's nothing for household drawings, interest or tax. The McPhersons say their sporty children aren't going on training camps anymore and the two of them have $20 each a week to spend on coffee or going out treats. [more]

11/03/2016: Rakaia Welcomes You - A Snapshot of a Mid-Canterbury Community
The agricultural sector might be at a low ebb but in Rakaia, a rural township in mid-Canterbury, the community spirit is alive and kicking. With Liz Depree from the Rakaia Medical Trust, agricultural engineer and community leader Neil Pluck, chairwoman of the local beautification subcommittee Elma Hobson and Jeremy Duckmanton, a young 50/50 sharemilker who is determined to remain optimistic about the future of dairy farming. Woven into the story are also some clips from a 1950 Canterbury Pilgrimage programme about Rakaia from the Nga Taonga Sound & Vision archives. [more]

18/03/2016: Bobby Calf Rules
Scott Gallacher, the Deputy Director of General Regulation and Assurance for the Ministry for Primary Industries talks about the recently formed Bobby Calf Action Group. [more]

18/03/2016: Regional Wrap
Wonderful welcome rain's fallen in Horowhenua and parts of Taranaki, but it's holding up apple harvesting in the North and South Island. Marlborough however is still desperate for rain. [more]

18/03/2016: New Zealand's Oldest Gumboots: Part Three
Celeste Ventura of Ohakune still has her mother's ankle height, fabric rimmed, gumboots which were first worn on a trip to Ruapehu in 1952. She says her mother would've worn them with stockings, as socks were not on her fashion radar. In fact that trip was the first time Celeste had seen her mother wear trousers. Neville Connolly has gumboots that he bought in 1959 or 1960. While only used for washing the car these days, they have been dipped in formaldehyde, used to spray 245T, and along with the owner, they've ended up in a cheese vat, and sheep dip containing dieldrin. [more]

18/03/2016: Flying High
Tracey & Scott Bowman started Oxford Bird Rescue in 2012 after they established that there was not a place in North Canterbury to take injured, abandoned or lost birds. Over the past several months alone they've cared for about one thousands birds, the most common are ducks and garden birds like sparrows, but they've also rescued magpies, hawks, herons and owls. [more]

18/03/2016: The Fresh Grower
Growing's in the blood for Allan Fong. His parents were market gardeners and now he and his brother have expanded their business and grow more than 200 hectares of leafy greens near Pukekohe. Allan supplies mainstream supermarkets and Asian supermarkets and even exports to Hong Kong. [more]

24/03/2016: Regional Wrap
Taranaki, Manawatu and Horowhenua have had wonderful rain, but facial eczema is rampant and some dairy farmers have had to dry off their whole herd, or at least some cows, early. Even farmers taking every precauction possible are finding their stock coming down with clincial signs of eczema. Marlborough's had most welcome rain, while the West Coast's had a bit too much this week. [more]

24/03/2016: New Zealand's Oldest Gumboots: Part four
John Forde has a pair of Skellerup Ashley gumboots which should have laces up the front. But instead he has a carefully placed piece of Number 8 wire, "it makes them easy to take on and off." Winners of the Skellerup gumboots: Iona MacDonald and Bob Bos. [more]

24/03/2016: Diary of a Dairy Farmer: Re-grassing
Sharemilker Andrew McPherson is drilling seed on his Waikato dairy farm. He re-grasses a portion of the farm each year but is finding more and more land looks like it needs a fresh lot of seed because of the damage caused by black beetle. topics] rural, farming [more]

24/03/2016: Teaser Bulls
Teaser Bulls are vasectomised bulls that identify cows that are ready to be mated. Jennie Macky leases the 15 month old bulls to farmers to do what they do best in their herds. She says having a teaser bull in a paddock with the cows leaves farmers in no doubt whether a cow is cycling or not. [more]

24/03/2016: Milk for Mozzarella
A herd of horned beasts provides milk for Methven cheese makers. Tucked away on an isolated farm near the foothills of the Southern Alps is the only commercial dairy buffalo herd in the South Island. Lucy Appleton and Christo Keijzer brought the core of the dairy herd over from Australia several years ago and have been building it up ever since. This year it numbers over 50 and the milk, which has 100% more fat content than cow's milk, is fuelling Lucy's cheese making business. As well as producing the traditional Italian Mozzarella di Bufala, she also uses the milk to make halloumi, ricotta and yogurt that are sold at farmers markets in Christchurch. [more]

01/04/2016: Idaho Cattle Farmer
Chyenne Smith has a small cattle ranch in northern Idaho. Each summer the cattle are taken out to range across thousands of acres of land. [more]

01/04/2016: Regional Wrap
Waikato's still hunting for rain and as in Taranaki and Horowhenua facial eczema spore counts are still a real worry. In the South Island winter is knocking at Central Otago's door after temperatures went down to minus 2 this week. [more]

01/04/2016: New Zealand's Oldest Gumboots Part Five
Ray Ryan's thigh gumboots are believed to be more than 65 years old. They were originally owned by well-known New Zealand sculptor Richard Gross. [more]

01/04/2016: Rooting for the Radish
Geraldine farmers Gerald and Judy Pemberton grow Komatsuna radish seeds for South Pacific Seeds, a specialist hybrid vegetable seed production company based in Methven. The company also donates some of its other seeds to Geraldine's Rotary Club Garden Project, which encourages local primary school children to grow vegetables with the help of their parents. topics] rural, farming [more]

01/04/2016: Cattle to Kauroa
Four times a year the sale yards at Kauroa, 20 minutes south of Raglan, come alive with livestock auctions. It's the only remaining small country sale yard in coastal Waikato, and the long standing tradition of a BBQ and beer under nearby trees at the end of the day, remains a highlight for local farmers. Max Kempthorne's been hauling sheep, lambs, weaner and older cattle to the yards for the past decade or more. It's a job he enjoys because the scenery around coastal Waikato is stunning, the roads challenging, and he gets to know all the local farmers. [more]

08/04/2016: Gone Broke zero 800cowcocky
Chris Lethbridge is hunting for work because his dairy farm is in receivership and he needs to leave by the end of June. He's worked in the dairy industry for thirty years, but says now his three million dollar farm near Whangarei is only worth two million, and he's been forced out. [more]

08/04/2016: Regional Wrap
Facial eczema is so bad some dairy farmers are having to kill affected stock in the Northland, while in the South Island farmers are still milking twice a day. [more]

08/04/2016: Under a quad bike
Rural GP and farmer Tim Malloy talks about the experience of being crushed by a quad bike in January. [more]

08/04/2016: Bulls Donate for Hair Care Range
There's a new shampoo and hair conditioning range on the market, it contains BSP - Bovine Seminal Plasma. [more]

08/04/2016: Land of the Grapes
Grape harvesting's in full swing in North Canterbury's Waipara Valley. At the Muddy Water winery, that's nestled in the lee of the Teviotdale Hills, tonnes of freshly picked chardonnay and pinot noir grapes are sorted and de-stemmed by seasonal workers at the back of the building. Inside, dozens of two metre high fermenting vats are full to the brim with grapes in the first stage of the wine making process, while next door the last of the 2015 vintage is being bottled and boxed. [more]

15/04/2016: Fieldwork in Tibet
A team of Lincoln University scientists are conducting a sustainable grasslands research programme on the Qinghai Tibetan Plateau. The team is led by soil scientist Dr Jim Moir. [more]

15/04/2016: Regional Wrap
Feijoa harvesting's underway, at Ruatoria on the East Coast the ewes are in good nick for the ram and a young Taranaki dairy farmer is gearing up for National awards. In the South Island, fruit havesting's in full swing and dairy farmers are on the downhill stretch towards drying off. [more]

15/04/2016: The Green Lady
Fiona, Lady Elworthy has turned a derelict pine plantation opposite the Maungati Church Hall in South Canterbury into a park and walkway for all to enjoy. [more]

15/04/2016: Literacy Lessons
Jazz was pregnant when she decided she would like to be able to read to her child. She'd left school with very few reading skills. After three months working with a reading coach, Jaz's reading age jumped three years. Now her little boy snuggles on his mother's lap while she reads to him. Jaz was one on the Adult Literacy Trust's first students. It's a service designed for students who live in rural or isolated areas. Reading coaching happens over the phone or, if there's an internet connection, via Skype. [more]

22/04/2016: Shear Pace
Gisborne businesswoman Storm Baynes-Ryan has developed Shear Pace, a new app that assists sheep shearers with setting shearing tally goals and achieving them. [more]

22/04/2016: Regional Wrap
In the North Island farmers who sowed new grass and clovers earlier in March have had good growth and some are able to put stock onto it within four to six weeks. In the South Island dairy farmers are putting woodchip into wintering sheds and getting the calf sheds ready. [more]

22/04/2016: Cloth of Any Colour
A small township North of Wellington is bringing the world to its doors, for a slice of prized Merino wool. Levana Textiles has been in Levin for about fifty years and because of its innovative technology, it's still producing products that are sought after internationally.The chief executive of The Merino Company-Levana textiles, Andy Wynne, says their "Nuyarn" merino wool is stronger, warmer, drier, and tougher than its competitors. Features intern producer Lucy Smith went along to meet the man behind the successful fabric factory, and she hunted out some archival material too. [more]

22/04/2016: My Lamb’s A-Field
In 2011 Whanganui farmers Richard and Suze Redmayne set up Coastal Spring Lamb. They, along with a group of other coastal, family based, sheep farmers produce lamb specifically for selling between October and January. The lambs are some of the first born in the country and business has been growing each year. The original nine families have been joined by five more and since January last year, Coastal Spring Lamb has been exporting product to Vietnam. It's now added in Belgium, Singapore, Dubai and Thailand and has Hong Kong and Maccau on the list. On the export scene, Coastal Spring Lamb is followed by Coastal Lamb for the remaining weeks of the year. [more]

22/04/2016: The water of my Land
They don't agree about much, but at least they're willing to speak up. Waikari artist, writer and environmentalist Sam Mahon meets with Medbury dairy farmer Dave Hislop to discuss their different views on farming methods and water issues in North Canterbury. [more]

29/04/2016: Jeff Sewell - Sheep Scanner
Jeff Sewell has recently returned from a stint in drought-stricken Victoria, Australia, where he spent his time pregnancy scanning 60,000 ewes. tags] Australian drought, sheep farming, ewe scanning [more]

29/04/2016: Regional Wrap
Northland dairy farmers are facing a real squeeze by banks, a Wairarapa farmer has buried more than 50 ewes seriously affected by facial eczema and, in the South Island, it's getting desperately dry again in North Canterbury. [more]

29/04/2016: Peonies and Parsley
At half past four each Saturday morning Rodger Whitson packs 50 crates of leafy green vegetables and herbs and takes them to the Otago Farmers' Market. The former butcher has hung up his knife and now divides his time between growing beautiful peonies for export and tending 20 types of hydroponically grown greens. [more]

29/04/2016: Origin Earth - A Hawkes Bay Boutique Dairy Company
Five and a half years ago a Hawkes Bay couple set up a boutique dairy company, Origin Earth. They collect cow and sheep milk from three very special farmers who pay great attention to their soils and who produce top quality milk. Business has boomed and in the recent New Zealand Cheese Awards they collected 12 medals for their ten cheeses. Baristas and chefs are clamouring for their products. [more]

06/05/2016: Fort McMurray Wild Fires Are Horror for Horses
Clearwater Horse Club scrambled to find enough vehicles to evacuate over 100 horses, as fires sweeping through Northern Alberta came close to the equestrian centre where they lived. Some horses that couldn't be loaded onto trailers were left to find their own way to safety. [more]

06/05/2016: Regional Wrap
Glorious rain has fallen in parts of the North Island. In Canterbury, drought conditions continue to bite. [more]

06/05/2016: Down to the Wire and Let's Get 'Em Down Safety Campaign
Two campaigns, 'Down to the Wire', and ' Let's Get 'Em Down', are encouraging farmers to remove unsafe wires, often electric fence wires strung across a gully, from their farms. Both campaigns are dedicated to a helicopter pilot, Peter Robb, who lost his life in a wire strike crash in October 2014. His daughter now has to run her father's business full time, and she's an ambassador for the Down to the Wire campaign. Let's Get 'Em Down is a private initiative by Peter Robb's friend and colleague pilot and farmer Dean Lithgow. 29 pilots have died in wire strike accidents in New Zealand. [more]

06/05/2016: Coastal Conversion
Ian and Heather Smith have been farming sheep and cattle on their Southland farm in Waimahaka for three decades. Two years ago they decided to build a rotary milking shed, bought 450 cows and converted their best land into a dairy operation. Switching to dairy has been a big learning curve for the couple and despite the current low payout, they still believe they have made the right decision. [more]

13/05/2016: Kumara Anyone?
[image:11023:full] This season's been a boomer for growing kumara. Anthony Blundell from Kaipara Kumara says returns are down for growers but consumers can stock up at good prices. [audio_play] [more]

13/05/2016: Regional Wrap
The biggest ever shipment of kiwifruit to Asia has left the Port of Tauranga. In Central Otago, crutching's in full swing as ewes are made ready for the waiting ram. [more]

13/05/2016: Crunchy Kelp
Rob Emett used to dive to eradicate seaweed, now he's harvesting it, drying it and is turning it into seasonings and crisps. [more]

13/05/2016: Beefalo
Southland farmers Nadia and Blair Wisely have a small but growing herd of beefalo, a bison and cattle hybrid that produces excellent meat. They started selling small quantities of the meat to local restaurants in 2014. The couple use artificial insemination to get the cows in calf, but if they can get a bison bull to breed naturally with the beef herd, expensive bison semen from America will no longer be required. [more]

13/05/2016: A Country Doctor
New Zealand could find jobs for 100 rural GPs tomorrow. In fact, 60 percent of our rural medical workforce graduated overseas. What's being done to lure doctors away from the city lights? [more]

20/05/2016: The Apple of the World
The World Apple Report has ranked New Zealand's apple industry as the world's most competitive for the second year in a row. [more]

20/05/2016: New Zealand Dairy Industry Award Winners
On a Saturday evening in mid-May the winners of the 2016 NZ Dairy Industry Awards were announced in Wellington. 33 finalists competed for the honour of being named the winner in either the Share Farmer of the Year, Dairy Manager of the Year or Trainee of the Year category. Mark and Jaime Arnold took out Share Farmers of the Year, Thomas Chatfield Dairy Manager and Nicholas Bailey Dairy Trainee. Between them they took home $170,000 of prizes. [more]

20/05/2016: The Northern Ontario School of Medicine
The town of Chapleau in Northern Ontario hadn't had a permanent doctor in seven years. Now it has three. They were all trained at the Northern Ontario School of Medicine (NOSM), a new university set up in 2005 with the express goal of training doctors who would go on to work in rural and remote parts of the province. [more]

20/05/2016: Rural Midwives
Midwives in New Zealand are now being trained in rural satellites. The new model of learning is improving access to medical care and helping with the stability of the midwifery workforce. [more]

20/05/2016: A Stream Runs Through it
The Canterbury Waterway Rehabilitation Experiment or CAREX is co-led by Professors Angus McIntosh and Jon Harding from the University of Canterbury's Freshwater Ecology Research Group. CAREX has partnered up with the Department of Conservation, Fonterra and scientists from ESR to focus on ways to improve rural waterway health through better nutrient, sediment and weed management. To find out how the research is progressing, Cosmo Kentish-Barnes visits Jill and Richard Simpson's dairy farm near Lincoln where the CAREX partners are conducting in-stream trials. [more]

27/05/2016: Ahuwhenua Young Maori Famer of the year
Jack Rahahruhi manages a Landcorp farm at Cape Foulwind and last week was named Young Maori Farmer of the Year. [more]

27/05/2016: Regional Wrap
It's been thundery and wet in the North Island . In the South cattle are on a winter rotation of swedes, kale, chowmolia and fodderbeet. [more]

27/05/2016: Young Maori Farmer of Year Finalist Ash-Leigh Campbell
Ash-Leigh Campbell is studying at Lincoln University. She has plans to work her way into farm ownership and would love to become a leader in the dairy industry. [more]

27/05/2016: Replanting the Hoteo
John and Geraldine Taylor, who have farmed their North Auckland land for 50 years, have raised cash through crowd funding to bring back native bush along the banks of a river running through their property. The Hoteo is Auckland's longest river and eventually flows into the Kaipara Harbour. The replanting is part of a long term goal to save snapper breeding grounds in the harbour waters. [more]

27/05/2016: Ahuwhenua Finalist Harepaora Ngaheu
Farming has turned 24 year old Harepaora Ngaheu's life around. Harepaora lives at Te Teko near Whakatane and is proud to be a role model for other young Maori. [more]

27/05/2016: Anthea Yule... Farming is a Privilege
Anthea Yule started her farming life married to Lawrence Yule, who is now the mayor of Hastings. In the late 1980's they started farming his parent's property near the Ngaruroro River in Hawkes Bay. Anthea says if you'd asked her fifteen years ago, what she expected to be doing now, she'd say; some relief teaching, a bit of golf, volunteer work. But, her life's taken another turn all together, a turn's that's forced her to dig deep to cope. The marriage broke up and now she runs the property on her own account. She's transformed some of Paranui using irrigation and has a lamb finishing business which sees her sending lambs off farm nearly every week of the year. The Yules have four children and they're all heavily involved in the farm and its business direction. [more]

03/06/2016: NIWA's Seasonal Climate Outlook for June to August
NIWA Forecaster Chris Brandolino describes what Kiwis can expect, in broad terms, in the way of rainfall and temperature over the coming winter season. [more]

03/06/2016: Drying Off
Waikato Sharemilkers Andrew and Michelle McPherson milk 530 cows near Te Awamutu in Waikato. Country Life has visited them over the past year and in this episode they wrap the season up. [more]

03/06/2016: Regional Wrap
In the North Island many regions had their first rain free days for a long time, at the end of the week, and autumn pasture covers are now looking pretty good. Stock are on winter rotation in Central Otago where temperatures went down to minus 8 degrees on Wednesday night. [more]

03/06/2016: Calling from Co. Kilkenny
Suzanna Crampton farms on a property that has been in her family for seven generations. She raises rare Zwartble sheep and documents her rural life on social media. [more]

03/06/2016: Pianist and Vegetable Guru Clyde Potter
Clyde Potter owns Epicurean Supplies, an extensive, organic, market garden on the outskirts of Hastings. He was one of the first growers to get into many of the Asian greens three decades ago, and he loves growing things which are pushing the boundaries for what consumers normally eat. He's also consumed with a desire to play the piano. He has four on his property - from his humble bedroom/sitting room, to the staff kitchen and a work area. [more]

03/06/2016: Farming on the Fringe
Dozens of cut & blow wave vouchers from the Kaos HQ hair salon in Invercargill have been gifted to dairy farmers in response to the plunging payout. The initiative is run by the Southern Dairy Women's Network in order to raise rural spirits and give women a chance to catch up with others and get some well-deserved pampering. [more]

10/06/2016: Regional Wrap
Hawkes Bay is particularly dry for the time of year while further south Canterbury has had a topsy turvy winter so far with fine frosty weather followed by a week of mild nor'west conditions. [more]

10/06/2016: Stonehurst Mushrooms
Kate Wendelgelst is a very patient woman. She'll be waiting years before she digs to see if the truffles she is expecting, grow. In the meantime, Kate's growing oyster, poplar and shitake mushrooms on her property just out of Dunedin. [more]

10/06/2016: Climbing the dairy ladder
Albino Guien Dakila has gone from farm labouring to running his own dairy farming operation. Albino and his wife Anna moved to Southland from the Philippines seven years ago and now they are lower order sharemilkers near Invercargill. While Albino looks after the farm, Anna supports him as relief milker and takes care of the administrative side of the business. [more]

10/06/2016: Green Fingers and Gondwanaland
Peter Cooke and Anna Moore courted over a compost heap. More than 30 years later they are still making compost together. They live near Portobello on the Otago Peninsula and have a lush and spectacular garden, a bountiful vegetable patch, dozens of obliging fruit trees and a vocal rooster called Pavarotti. [more]

17/06/2016: Regional Wrap with Young Farmers
[gallery:2148] Dairy farmers are enjoying the lull before calving begins next month. Winter shearing is underway in the north. [more]

17/06/2016: Sweet Success
Zespri CEO Lain Jager says the co-operative is looking to export even sweeter fruit next season. It's been a good year for kiwifruit growers with returns sitting around $50,000 per hectare for green fruit and $100,000 for gold. [more]

17/06/2016: Tokotea Tomatoes Tempt Tastebuds
In New Zealand we spend about $100 million a year on fresh tomatoes, by value it's the number one seller. Most of the fresh tomatoes are grown in hothouses and only a handful of growers, generally with heritage tomatoes, supply outdoor ones. But one young Hawkes Bay couple are hoping to make high tasting, quality, outdoor tomatoes more available. Jo Gibson and Stu Morley have a background in tomato harvesting and they set up Tokotea Fresh earlier this year. They bought a harvesting machine to make picking more cost effective and have been supplying a local supermarket. They aim to expand those outlets, and as well as the fresh vegetable, they're planning to sell bottled juice made from 100% squeezed tomatoes, rather than from concentrate. [more]

17/06/2016: Waiting for Christmas
Milking machine manufacturers are changing their focus while they wait for the dairy pay-out to pick up and for New Zealand farmers to invest in new milking systems. [more]

17/06/2016: Ewe Milk Sheep
Southland is home to one of the largest sheep milking operations in the world. Antara Ag Farms runs approximately 14,000 milking ewes across three properties. All the milk is processed at the Blue River Dairy factory in Invercargill and is exported to China. [more]

24/06/2016: Regional Wrap
In Waikato there have been 18 degree days and pasture growth rates are much better than expected. Cows are putting on condition and are being grouped according to whether they are early or late calvers. In Canterbury some spill over rain from the Northwest spread across the plains this week although it's still extremely dry for the time of year. [more]

24/06/2016: Young Entrepreneurs
Last week more than 130,000 people went through the gates at the National Agricultural Fieldays near Hamilton. Ten of those were top, young South East Asian agri-business leaders and entrepreneurs. They'd been selected on recommendations from our Embassies and High Commissions in South East Asia and were in New Zealand on a programme managed by the Asia New Zealand Foundation - especially timed to coincide with Fieldays. [more]

24/06/2016: Colin Cox - pioneer deer farmer and possumer
Colin Cox was been involved in the very beginnings of deer farming in New Zealand, and the development of possum fibre for use in clothing. He's written down his life experiences which Country Life has turned into a booking reading series. Today he sets the scene for his role as a New Zealand pioneer. [more]

24/06/2016: Josiah Firth - Colonial Entrepreneur
This year marks 150 years since Auckland buisnessman Josiah Firth started farming 22-thousand hectares near Matamata in Waikato. His estate was a show piece of technology and home to the Firth Tower. [more]

24/06/2016: Southland Community Nursery
The Southland Community Nursery in Otatara grows locally-sourced native plants best suited for Southland conditions. About 8000 plants have been grown this year and most are allotted to nursery volunteers who plant them on their properties. [more]

01/07/2016: Regional Wrap
It's been wet and soggy in the North Island, large lakes have formed on many Waikato farms, while in Canterbury the rain has held up cultivation and sowing on heavy land. [more]

01/07/2016: Stopping Summer Stress
Dean and Antoinette Martin are dry stock farmers in Hawkes Bay. Over the years they've seen summer droughts become more intense and more frequent. Tired of the summer stress they've turned their farming system around and now the stressful times, if there are any, come in winter when it's too wet. The Martins now run stock in large mobs, and focus on pasture volume rather than quality. Dean puts at least 30 different plant varieties in his pasture mixes. [more]

01/07/2016: Colin Cox_ Pioneer Deer Farmer and Possum Hunter
Colin Cox was involved in the very beginnings of deer farming in New Zealand and with the development of possum fibre for use in clothing. He's written a memoir which Country Life has turned into a series. Today he, his father and brother are struggling with a boar that's killing lambs and Colin's possum trapping escapades see him get cyanide poisoning. [more]

01/07/2016: Looking After the Land
Sheep farming and environmental responsibility go hand in hand on 80-year-old Malcolm Mackenzie's 193 hectare farm near Winton in Southland. Over time he has planted shelter belts of native species, fenced off waterways, developed a wetland area and every year he grows hundreds of heritage apple trees for the Riverton Environment Centre. [more]

08/07/2016: Jersey New Zealand
Alison Gibb, who farms at Taupiri in Waikato with her husband Russell, has recently become the first female president of Jersey New Zealand in its 114 year history. [more]

08/07/2016: Regional Wrap - Farmers on the Land
Taranaki has had a couple of cracker frosts and Northland vegetable crops haven't like the wet, dreary weather. In Marlborough, ewe scanning results are up between 10 and 15 percent. [more]

08/07/2016: Sticky Fingers
There's a gold rush in the honey industry. Returns for manuka honey have skyrocketed and bees are in hot demand. Hundreds of thousands of dollars' worth of beehives and other beekeeping equipment is being stolen by people keen to join in and chase the honey flow. Beekeepers have had enough. [more]

08/07/2016: Colin Cox: Pioneer Deer Farmer and Possumer - part 3
Colin Cox was involved in the very beginnings of deer farming in New Zealand and with the development of possum fibre for use in clothing. He's written a memoir which Country Life has turned into a series. Today he and his father start capturing deer and farming them illegally. [more]

08/07/2016: From Hoof to Plate - Bycroft Artisan Meats
Chris Carthy was twelve when he first worked as a scrubber in Taggarts Butchery in Christchurch. He went on to do his apprenticeship there too but since then he's travelled the world as a roadie, worked extensively in the film industry and created a fashion label. However he's never lost his passion for meat and now he is growing and processing drug free lamb on his small farm in North Canterbury. [more]

15/07/2016: Regional Wrap from Farmers on the Land
A homewares business in Dargaville is busy because Aucklanders buying up local homes are re-carpeting before they move in. Snow is now covering South Island mountains, although temperatures out near the coast are still quite mild for the time of year. [more]

15/07/2016: Protecting farming livestock in India has many challenges
Foot and Mouth disease, opportunistic tigers and crop raiding elephants are among the biggest nightmares for farmers in many parts of rural India. Poverty, isolation, illiteracy and some faith healing practices are also making a difficult situation even harder. An English vet is working with village farmers in central India to help them take the best possible care of their livestock, especially cattle which are vital for farmwork and milk - not meat in this predominantly  Hindu country. Professor Andy Hopker is a Lecturer in Farm Animal Practice at the The Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies in Midlothian in Scotland. [more]

15/07/2016: Colin Cox: Pioneer Deer Farmer and Possumer - Part 4
  Colin Cox was involved in the very beginnings of deer farming in New Zealand and with the development of possum fibre for use in clothing. He's written a memoir which Country Life has turned into a series. Today deer farming becomes legal, but there are tough men in the industry. [more]

15/07/2016: Flying High
Bush Haven is a bird sanctuary near Invercargill where retired couple Russell and May Evans breed Kaka chicks for release and care for injured native birds, mainly Kereru and Tui, until they can go back into the wild environment. [more]

22/07/2016: Young Grower of the Year
Andrew Hutchinson has become New Zealand's Young Grower of the Year. He believes there are huge opportunities for young people in horticulture. [more]

22/07/2016: Regional Wrap
Calving's kicking off on dairy farms around the country and frosts in central Otago have only hit -5 degrees; it's the ones in double digits farmers worry about. [more]

22/07/2016: Woody's Farm
Daniel Todd has swapped life in the big city for one raising rare breeds of pig near Levin. Daniel moved to New Zealand from Sydney three years ago and, loving bacon but horrified at pig rearing practices, decided to start farming himself. He farms Large Blacks and Berkshires and sells their meat on-line and at farmers' markets. [more]

22/07/2016: Colin Cox: Pioneer Deer Farmer and Possumer - Part 5
Colin Cox was involved in the very beginnings of deer farming in New Zealand and with the development of possum fibre for use in clothing. He's written a memoir which Country Life has turned into a series. Today he accidentally meets and hosts an American army officer. [more]

22/07/2016: Green Grass
Dave Sulley one of the small group of dedicated people who make sure that the country's nearly 400 golf courses stay open - and golfers get to play their rounds. Dave is greenkeeper at Te Marua Golf Course on the outskirts of Wellington. Dave sees the course as his farm. Te Marua is about 70ha of well-manicured grass bordered by trees but the turf is managed completely differently to that of pasture on a working farm. [more]

29/07/2016: Regional Wrap
It's poured with rain virtually everywhere in the North Island this week, except eastern Wairarapa which is still desperate for rain, and early lambing farms on the Waimea Plains are having the worst lambing weather in ten years. [more]

29/07/2016: Polaris Big Four Hunting Competition - Part One
Every June the Polaris Te Puna Big Four hunting competition is held in Bay of Plenty. It's an event where four people hunt for four days to collect four species: a boar, stag, trout and pheasant. The competition attracts nearly 100 teams from all over New Zealand. Some even come from Australia. In part one Country Life joins the team trying to get a boar deep in the Raukumaras. [more]

29/07/2016: Colin Cox_ Pioneer Deer Farmer Part 6
Colin Cox was involved in the very beginnings of deer farming in New Zealand and with the development of possum fibre for use in clothing. He's written a memoir which Country Life has turned into a series. Today he chronicles the beginning of the possum fur industry. [more]

29/07/2016: Polaris Big Four Hunting Competition_ Part two
Day three of the competition and it was time to try trout fishing on Lake Rotoiti. Four hours of bobbing around didn't net a thing. Over most of the week it poured with rain but luckily Friday morning was fine and the pheasant shoot was successful, within six minutes of starting out. The final weigh-in on Saturday includes meeting someone who got all four animals, with the boar and stag coming from Marlborough. [more]

05/08/2016: Debt on the Dairy Farm
Consulting Ag-Economist Phil Journeaux says the average Waikato and Bay of Plenty Dairy farm lost $100,000 last season. [more]

05/08/2016: Regional Wrap
Hawkes Bay has finally seen some rain and the West Coast of the South lsland has had more than its share; some parts have received 2 metres of rain in the past three months. [more]

05/08/2016: Colin Cox: Pioneer Deer Farmer and Possumer - Pt 7
Colin Cox was involved in the very beginnings of deer farming in New Zealand and with the development of possum fibre for use in clothing. He's written a memoir which Country Life has turned into a series. Today Colin learns possum fur's hollow fibre is very similar to that of a polar bear, so he puts its insulating properties to the test. [more]

05/08/2016: Woodbury Clydesdales
Jim and Deborah Cook love their Clydesdales, it's in their genes; Jim's grandfather worked a team on his farm and Deb's grandfather was a competition ploughman. Their 18 horses live on the outskirts of Cust in North Canterbury. Some of them are regular competitors at A & P Shows around the South Island and more often than not they come away with prizes. As well being used for breeding and showing, the horses get hitched up to a plough every now then and are put to work pulling ploughs through heavy soil. [more]

05/08/2016: Bidding for Bulls
The Purdie family from Mahoenui have been breeding Angus bulls for more than 90 years. At the beginning of June they held their 70th on-farm sale. Farmers from around the North Island came to bid on the bulls - looking for athletic, well-muscled, masculine animals with good temperaments and very healthy libidos. [more]

12/08/2016: Kiwifruit Tingles Fijian Tastebuds
Twenty tonnes of kiwifruit has been delivered to schools across the island of Viti Levu, Fiji, this week. Fresh fruit has been in short supply since February when Cyclone Winstone wiped out crops and communities. The kiwifruit exporter Zespri has donated a container load of fruit, with support also coming from T & G, Maersk, SEMCO and Tauranga Fruit Logistics. Most of the children have never seen kiwifruit before, and as well as trying some at school, they're taking a kilo home. The principal of Molumolu Primary School near Nadi, Sailesh Sharma, says they're very grateful for the fruit because while his rural families are now producing enough vegetables, fruit is scarce. Mangos are ripening but there's not much fruit on the trees, and guavas, oranges and mandarins were also ruined. He says it will be two months before bananas are in better supply and the price will drop. [more]

12/08/2016: Farm Call Outs Through a Vet's Eyes
Balclutha vet John Smart and Culverdon vet Alistair Kenyon talk about what is taking their time on farms at present. [more]

12/08/2016: A Sweet Job
In a day's work, Maureen Conquer can swallow almost 100 teaspoons of honey. She was recently chief judge at the National Honey Show. [more]

12/08/2016: Learning on the Land
Rangiora High School is one of the few schools in New Zealand to have a working farm. It was started in 1910 and after years as a mixed stock and crop unit it was restructured as a teaching unit with an attached horticulture area. [more]

19/08/2016: Farm call-outs through a vet's eyes
This week three North Island vets talk about work they've been doing lately: from correcting a twisted uterus, to testing the solids content of colostrum, and dealing with a calving when they calf has its head turned back on itself. [more]

19/08/2016: The Bushy Point Restoration Project
Barry Smith is chairperson of the Otatara Landcare Group that's made up of local volunteers who value the natural environment. The Bushy Point Restoration Project is the group's main hands on activity. The aim is to restore a 14 hectare area of pasture located between two remnants of nationally significant native totara forest. [more]

19/08/2016: NZ Pork Awards
NZ's premiere pork competition held its annual awards dinner last month. The 100% NZ Pork awards aim to celebrate top class bacon, ham and pork products .This year there were around 200 entries from over 50 butchers. [more]

19/08/2016: Using bumblebees as pollinators
Plant and Food Research scientist Dr David Pattemore is investigating the living habits of bumble bees so they can be used to help honey bees pollinate commercial horticultural crops. [more]

26/08/2016: Contamination crisis hits small milk firm hard
Origin Earth is a small specialty cheese and fresh milk factory on the outskirts of Havelock North and the current campylobacter water contamination crisis is costing the business thousands. [more]

26/08/2016: Regional Wrap
The North Island had a warm end to the week and farmers are hoping the rising temperatures will nudge grass and crop growth along. Calving continues across the country. [more]

26/08/2016: The Driver
New Zealand born photographer Alice Mabin was in her car when it was hit by a truck. She started thinking about trucks and took out her camera. Alice then spent months rumbling down country roads documenting the role trucks play in the economy. [more]

26/08/2016: Buffalos in cow country
"Buffaloes are beautiful' - that's the motto of Phil Armstrong and Annie Armstrong-Wills who raise a herd of waterbuffaloes just north of Auckland. They hit upon the unusual idea some years ago when they were looking for a lifestyle project. Along with their parents, they bought some land in Dairy Flat, imported a herd of buffaloes from Australia and got on with the job of making cheese and beef. [more]

26/08/2016: Model Milking
The Lincoln University Dairy Farm is operated by the South Island Dairying Development Centre and is run as a fully-commercial demonstration farm. The focus for the 2015/16 season is to increase productivity without increasing the overall environmental footprint. [more]

02/09/2016: Whitebaiter Murray Arnt
78 year old Murray Arnt has been whitebaiting every season since he was six. He's never missed a beat. This season he's perched on a narrow plank beside the Tarawera River in Bay of Plenty, with his pure bred Sydney Silky Jackie for company. [more]

02/09/2016: Regional Wrap
The price of indoor tomatoes has shot up and early stone fruit trees are in flower in the north of the South Island. [more]

02/09/2016: A Preference for Permaculture
Andrew Martin has swapped the high life for a life in which he tries to life as self sufficiently as possible on a small block in the western Bay of Plenty. [more]

02/09/2016: Whareroa Farm
On weekends and on summer evenings, the carpark at Whareroa Farm on the Kapiti Coast is full. Mountain bikers, walkers and families enjoy the farm. However, ten years ago it was about to be subdivided and would have been lost to the community had locals not rallied to save it. It's a piece of land with a rich history. In World War II, Whareora was home to Camp McKay - a training camp for American soldiers. Recently a heritage walk has been opened on the farm to look back at a time when 5,000 marines lived there. [more]

09/09/2016: Regional Wrap
Lamb deaths are expected following this week's cold snap which has brought snow and bitterly cold conditions to North and South Island hill country. [more]

09/09/2016: Bugging Bees
Huw Evans logs into his beehives in Italy and the UK from where ever he is in the world. He can tell whether the bees have made honey, whether the queen's laying eggs or whether someone's pushed the hive over on their way home from the pub. [more]

09/09/2016: Bread of heaven in the Bay
Setting up an artisan bake house on a small rural property with a babbling brook has been a dream of Maurice Lees' for a decade or more. It's been a reality for just under two years. He's making specialty sourdough bread in Manawahe, Bay of Plenty. His bake house was built by a local Bavarian builder incorporating windows he's lovingly collected and brought back from the UK. The wooden front door comes from Paris, circa 1890. The sourdough fermentation process takes about 36 hours. The bread's baked in an oven with a stone bottom and sold to various local outlets and markets. [more]

09/09/2016: Clear the board
Dave Te Kapa's shearing gang is pre-lamb shearing 1000 ewes a day at Snowdon Station in the Canterbury high country. Snowdon's owners, Roy Veronese and Annabel Tripp operate a Perendale stud alongside their commercial sheep and beef operation and focus on maximising stock production while, at the same time, farming sustainably. [more]

16/09/2016: Young Winemaker of the Year
Jordan Hogg from Seresin Estate in Marlborough is the Tonnellerie de Mercurey NZ Young Winemaker 2016. [more]

16/09/2016: Regional Wrap
Warm and moist conditions in the North Island are pushing grass growth, and asparagus along, while in the South Island arable farmers have been preparing ground and sowing spring cereals. [more]

16/09/2016: The Lichfield Giant
Milk has just started flowing into one of the two largest milk driers in the world at Fonterra's Lichfield plant in South Waikato. It's the same size as a drier at Darfield in Canterbury. The 50 metre high drier can make 720 metric tonnes of milk powder a day. [more]

16/09/2016: A Tripp Down Memory Lane
Tony Tripp has created a museum dedicated to rural memorabilia on Snowdon Station where he has been farming since 1961. In one of the sheds is a 1929 Bentley with a tow bar that Lucy Wills, the previous owner, used for feeding out hay to sheep on the 2200 hectare high country property in Canterbury. [more]

16/09/2016: Zipping Along
Ziplining through native bush is fun for the tourists and beneficial for the flora and fauna. Canopy Tours is into its fourth year of operation and visitors have been so excited by the pest control work being carried out in the Mamaku Forest that they've donated over 30 thousand dollars, unsolicited, towards the programme. Birds are returning to the area and one of the guides says people are remembering the bush as much as the zip lining. [more]

23/09/2016: Regional Wrap
Welcome rain has been falling in coastal Wairarapa and crops are going in in Canterbury. [more]

23/09/2016: Bleeding Blighters
Five hundred barber's pole worms can kill a sheep. They suck so much of the animal's blood that when you cut its throat, it doesn't bleed. Sheep farmer Gordon Levet has spent a lifetime breeding sheep to be resistant to the parasite. He's recently been honoured for his work. [more]

23/09/2016: Wagyu grower eyes juicy foreign markets
An update on how the more specialist meat breed Wagyu is doing in New Zealand. Wagyu is a traditional Japanese breed which is known for its fat-marbled meat. Firstlight Foods, the only commercial scale producer of Wagyu beef in New Zealand, says export markets are wanting more grass-fed beef, rather than grain fed beef, and it's keen to see dairy farmers use wagyu genetics over some of their dairy herd to produce a high value calf. [more]

23/09/2016: Meat Bryan Harris
A love of meat runs in the Harris family. The family opened its first butchery in Cheviot, North Canterbury 60 years ago. These days Harris Meats is an independent abattoir and meat processing business employing 45 staff. The family has a farm which supplies the abattoir with sheep and cattle year round. [more]

30/09/2016: Regional Wrap
Soils are completely saturated in parts of the North Island - but on the west coast of the South, it's been dry. [more]

30/09/2016: Beautiful Brahmans
Vanessa Corry is New Zealand's only registered breeder of Brahman Cattle. The huge, floppy-eared, loose skinned animals also have a hump and Vanessa's often been asked if they are camels or wildebeests. There are, in fact, more Brahman cattle in the world than any other breed of cattle. They can withstand hot temperatures and can be found out grazing and putting on weight in the heat of the day, when other breeds are seeking shelter. [more]

30/09/2016: Jane Paul talks about The Back Country series
Jane Paul is the community programme co-ordinator at Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision. [more]

30/09/2016: Catch the Wind
Warren Bryant and three of his farming neighbours are behind the Mill Creek windfarm in Wellington's Ohariu Valley - a 26 turbine scheme that started harvesting some the capital's world class wind - back in 2014. [more]

07/10/2016: Mink farming in Canada
Walt Freeman is a mink farmer in Ontario Canada. [more]

07/10/2016: Regional Wrap
It's been exceptionally wet in most North Island areas this week, from Auckland south through the central regions, streams are overflowing. In the South Island cropping farmers are able to get tractor work completed and seeds in. [more]

07/10/2016: The Ready Money Trail
A new walkway has recently opened in the Cheviot Hills Reserve in North Canterbury. The project has been a labour of love for a group of local volunteers led by retired sheep farmer David Anderson. [more]

07/10/2016: The Back Country
The Country Life webpage is showcasing a series of classic country clips from Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision. This week's film looks at gorse. Last week featured the inventor of the post hole borer, Ron Lister. Beth Clayton has won a DVD of the New Zealand feature movie Mahana for emailing in with his name. [more]

07/10/2016: For the Love of Animals
Shawn Bishop happily admits she's dotty about animals. Her husband Michael Dixon agrees. Shawn and Michael have set up an animal sanctuary for abused, unwanted and neglected farm animals on their property an hour north of Auckland. They've found homes for thousands of battery hens, scores of baby goats and have a resident pig who was once tied to and towed behind a car, but now is showered with love . [more]

14/10/2016: A Strong Start for Farmstrong
The rural well-being programme Farmstrong is proving a hit with farmers. More than a thousand people are visiting its website each week. [more]

14/10/2016: Regional Wrap
It's felt like summer on the east coast of the North Island this week, but farmers are still squelching around in paddocks over much of the island. In the south, farmers are getting crops in and lambs are being tailed. [more]

14/10/2016: Mussel farming In Marlborough
John Young is one of New Zealand's pioneer mussel farmers. He's the head of Marlborough Sounds based business Clearwater Mussels, which operates a mix of company-owned, and shareholder-owned farms throughout the Sounds and further afield in Tasman and Golden Bays. A boat ride through the Marlborough Sounds with him is a journey through an ancient seascape he knows like the back of his hand. [more]

14/10/2016: Global worming
Orchard waste from around Central Otago feeds millions of composting worms at Robbie Dick's worm farm in Cromwell. The worms convert tonnes of edible waste into castings manure, an organic compost ideal for growing plants, and are also sold to plumbers for composting toilets. [more]

21/10/2016: Supported Scholar - Georgina Lyndsay
Georgina Lyndsay is CRV Ambreed's Scholarship winner for 2016.The scholarship was established in 2010 to support and encourage Lincoln and Massey students with interests in animal husbandry, animal genetics, farm management and environmental sustainability to work in New Zealand's dairy industry. [more]

21/10/2016: Triplets in Triplicate
Wellsford farmer Gordon Levet didn't take much notice of one of his cows - until she started producing triplets. [more]

21/10/2016: Dazzling Daffodils
Clandon Daffodils grows more than a million stems of daffodils each year. The classic yellow daffodil is always a top seller but there are hundreds of other commercial varieties and hundreds more seen only at flower shows. [more]

21/10/2016: Magnificent Murphy's camp
Just west of Matata on the sweeping Bay of Plenty coastline you'll find an old-fashioned Kiwi camping ground that's been in the same family for 51 years. [more]

28/10/2016: NIWA: How Wet Are Our Soils?
Our guest this week is NIWA's principal scientist Chris Brandolino who's updating us on soil moisture conditions and what we can expect through to the end of the year. [more]

28/10/2016: Treading lightly on the soil
Organic farmer Bev Trowbridge believes biological and organic farmers are still viewed as a bit 'whacky' in New Zealand. [more]

28/10/2016: Laid to Rest
Sitting in solitude at the foot of the Dunstan Range and looking out over the Manuherikia Valley, the Drybread Cemetery was run-down until local farmers Tony and Karen Glassford and Ross Naylor decided to bring it back to life. They run a trust that has raised money for fencing, repairing damaged graves and making the historic site accessible. About 165 people are known to be interred at the cemetery, the first being one-year-old Thomas Greenback who drowned on February 28, 1870 in a race built for bringing water to a goldmine.    [more]

04/11/2016: Guest - Warrick James
Glentunnel sheep and beef farmer Warrick James is the President of the 2016 Canterbury A&P Show, the largest agricultural and pastoral show in New Zealand being held in Christchurch at the ASB Agricultural Park from Wednesday 9th to Friday 11th November. [more]

04/11/2016: The Lingering Effects of Facial Eczema
Cows are still recovering on Carol and Kay O'Donaghue's Waikato farm following the worst season for facial eczema they have ever seen. [more]

04/11/2016: Golden Valleys Turn Green
Central Otago is rapidly changing. Intensive irrigation has transformed once semi-arid valleys into lush pastures that support a growing dairy industry. St Bathans based landscape artist Grahame Sydney is refusing to acknowledge this new green in his paintings and he is concerned that farming practices in the region are increasingly driven by maximising income with no view of the long-term effects or sustainability. [more]

04/11/2016: Oxville Farms
David Anderson, his son Neil and daughter-in-law Leah Stone have set up a tiny, licensed abattoir on their farm, half an hour from Whangarei. It can process up to 30 animals each day and puts through buffaloes, goats, sheep, cows and even alpacas. [more]

04/11/2016: Salty River Farm
Daryn Rickwood and Louise Penny were leading an urban life before they bought and moved onto a 20 hectare block near Wellsford. They've started raising goats for meat and have plans to milk them too. The goat meat's sold at farmers markets and the novice farmers are delighted that more people have a taste for it than they'd expected. [more]

11/11/2016: WANTED - the Red Vented Bulbul
A one-thousand dollar reward is being offered for the Red Vented Bulbul. An unwanted pest, the bird may have taken up residence in the Bay of Plenty. [more]

11/11/2016: Gently Does It
Ursula Hayward and her husband Mark have recently won an award for a new tube feeder for calves that removes some of the stress of the procedure and reduces the chance of injury. [more]

11/11/2016: High hopes for citrus
Wi Pere Trust in Gisborne has a mixed portfolio of horticultural crops from kiwifruit to oranges, mandarins, grapes and persimmons. The Trust is looking at expanding its citrus because of market demand and aims to employ Wi Pere stakeholders on the orchards. [more]

11/11/2016: A symphony of Central Otago flavours
Winemaker Rudi Bauer's mission is to make wines that capture the essence of Central Otago. In 1996 he established the Quartz Reef biodynamic vineyard on the north-facing lower hills of Bendigo Station near Tarras, an area that sheep farmer John Perriam once called his "rabbit shit country". Thanks to Rudi's vision and a lot of hard work, the stony slopes have proven to be excellent grape growing country for his award-winning pinot noir, pinot gris and methode traditionelle sparkling wines. [more]

02/12/2016: Rural Business: Two Rivers Cafe in Cheviot
The recent Kaikōura earthquake has resulted in a dramatic downturn in business for Debbie Anderson of Two Rivers Cafe in Cheviot. She talks with Cosmo Kentish-Barnes. [more]

02/12/2016: Regional Wrap
The Bay of Plenty avocado harvest is half way through and in Waikato, the harvesting of outdoor blueberries started this week. Lamb weaning is gaining momentum in Canterbury while in Central Otago cherry harvesting is underway. [more]

02/12/2016: Amy Dibley, physio to the farmers
When Amy Dibley came back from her OE, she needed a job – so she bought a massage table and an EFTPOS machine and headed out into the country. Now she has ten physiotherapy clinics and has just been named the supreme winner at the Enterprising Rural Women awards. [more]

02/12/2016: Back on track in North Canterbury
Resilience and community spirit have shone through in North Canterbury in the aftermath of the earthquake. With no active civil defence post in operation in Cheviot in the days after the 7.8 quake, a group of locals mobilised a task force to support those in need. Further north at Mendip Hills Station farm manager Simon Lee has been repairing broken water pipes and clearing slips in time for weaning, while on Ben Lissington's dairy farm near Waiau, milk tankers are having to go off the beaten track to get to the rotary shed after a six metre section of the road was destroyed. [more]

09/12/2016: Wool Woes
Returns for wool have taken a dive. Federated Farmers Meat and Fibre spokeserson Rick Powdrell says the demand from Chinese buyers has dropped right off and returns following the Brexit vote have dipped. [more]

09/12/2016: Regional Wrap
Wind has ripped newly sown crops out of the ground in Horowhenua. In the South Island it's much greener than usual for the time of year but the ground is starting to dry out. [more]

09/12/2016: Wool and Wine
John Perriam has been growing fine wool at Bendigo Station in Central Otago since 1979. He was at the centre of farmer-driven initiative that led to the formation of Merino New Zealand and more recently he has overseen the transformation of the lower slopes of the 11,000 hectare property into a significant new wine area. [more]

09/12/2016: Forestry on fire
Forests planted on the East Coast 30 years ago are now being harvested and it's having a huge positive spinoff for people in the area. [more]

16/12/2016: Valley Gatherings
Genevieve King has just published a book about the food grown, produced and gathered in the Clarence Valley north of Kaikoura. She is from a high country farm that has suffered huge damage from the November earthquake and is also a raft guide and was camping with clients on the Clarence River when the quake hit. [more]

16/12/2016: Regional Wrap
Gentle amounts of rain have tickled the grass on many North Island farms, although eastern parts such as Hawkes Bay and Wairarapa are drying quickly in the strong winds. In the South Island Canterbury and Central Otago are green. Central hasn't been so green at this time of year since 1982. Sheep farmers are most disappointed at the poor lamb prices. [more]

16/12/2016: A solution to strewn silage wrap
Helen Slattery's rural contracting firm is one in a small network of businesses across New Zealand that collects used plastic wraps from bales of stock feed and sends it for recycling. [more]

16/12/2016: Warm winters delay cherry season
West Melton fruit grower Peter Sargeant has had to cancel all his Christmas cherry orders because the season is running so late, but luckily his strawberry crop is ripe for picking and the punnets are flying out of his tunnel house. [more]

16/12/2016: Running Rangitaiki
Landcorp's Rangitaiki Station on the Central Plateau is one of the SOE's larger enterprises. It has tens of thousands of animals, including New Zealand's largest deer herd. There are 20 staff and over 100 dogs. Venison from the farm is now being marketed under Landcorp's Pamu brand in North America and New Zealand. Using the Pamu brand Landcorp is developing partnerships with NZ processing and marketing companies. The aim is add value beyond the farm gate. [more]

23/12/2016: Regional Wrap
Ewes are being dagged and shorn in Southland and everyone's trying to get their lambs to the works before Christmas. In the North Island maize is finally growing well and the order has gone out for regular dollops of rain over summer. [more]

23/12/2016: Meat and Potatoes
Approval has been given to introduce a tiny wasp that will kill the damaging potato psyllid and $4.25 million has been earmarked to develop a meat sensor able to measure the quality of meat destined for export. [more]

23/12/2016: Noel's Christmas Trees
Every year more than 30-thousand Christmas trees are cut at Noel and Janet Higham's South Head farm near Helensville. The trees are sold as far away as Wellington. [more]

23/12/2016: Sale Yard Stocking Filler
A day off, socks, rain and more money for lamb are just some of things farmers attending this week's Frankton sale wanted in their Christmas stocking [more]

23/12/2016: Thrilling distilling in Cadrona valley
The Cardrona Distillery is nestled high in the Cardrona Valley between Wanaka and Queenstown. It's a dream come true for Desiree and Ash Whitaker who opened the plant in late 2015 after years of research and planning. The distillery houses a column still that distills vodka, gin and liqueurs which are bottled and sold onsite, while the single malt whisky goes straight into oak barrels to mature for another ten years. [more]

23/12/2016: Piqa Boo! What’s new in apples and pears
NZ growers are snapping up the newest apple on the block, Dazzle, and Piqa Boo, a new pear variety that combines the best of the East and West. [more]

13/01/2017: Country Life Summer Edition - Number 3
Rod Millen is a New Zealand and international motor racing champion who has lived in the United States since 1978. He now commutes every two weeks between California and Hahei in the Coromandel . Rod grew up on a farm in New Zealand and is now combining his love of rural life here with his love for motor racing. He's bought a farm and each year hosts the Leadfoot Festival on it. It's a festival of speed and driving. Drivers come from all over New Zealand and from overseas to scream up a hill climb course, that for 363 other days of the year, doubles as the farm's driveway. Also, winning poultry prizes is becoming a habit for 27-year-old duck breeder Richard Price, who rears his quacky birds on a 12 acre lifestyle block in Mosgiel... And Sourdough bread made the genuine slow way in a very rural artisan bakehouse. [more]

27/01/2017: Walk On and On
Lucas Smith, a 21-year-old entrepreneur and mountain guide, is producing merino wool blister protection for walkers, trampers, hunters and climbers. [more]

27/01/2017: Regional Wrap
It's been exceedingly windy over the whole of the North Island for the past three months, Northland and the East Coast and Hawkes Bay are getting very very dry, while the West Coast of the South Island is swimming in water. Central Otago crops are growing well and extra winter ones are going in. [more]

27/01/2017: Whenuanui Farm
Helensville farmers Dianne and Richard Kidd have wanted to enter the Farm Environment Awards for years, but it wasn't until last year that Auckland farmers were invited to enter – so they did, and won. [more]

27/01/2017: May I take your coat?
Keenan Scott is one of just a few professional alpaca shearers in New Zealand. Each year he shears about 8,000 animals across the North Island. [more]

27/01/2017: Free as a bird
The Wildlife Veterinary Trust in Christchurch has established a small hospital dedicated to treating and rehabilitating sick and injured wild birds. [more]

03/02/2017: Snap, Crackle and Pop - farming in the dry north
Roger Ludbrook says the dry is biting in Northland. [more]

03/02/2017: Regional Wrap
Hawkes Bay is worryingly dry but it's been hosing down in Taranaki. In Mid-Canterbury arable farmers have been harvesting grass seed this week. [more]

03/02/2017: A Karaka of a Sale
One of the biggest events on the New Zealand thoroughbred industry's annual calendar is on this week. The Karaka Sales attract buyers from all around the world. [more]

03/02/2017: Beloved Babydolls
Babydolls are rare, compact sheep with faces like teddy bears. They're in hot demand from orchardists and winegrowers, but they come with a hefty price-tag. [more]

03/02/2017: In a Nutshell
Otto and Valda Muller are taking a serious crack at the organic walnut market, planting 1,300 trees on their 130 hectare plateau above the Kawerau River in Central Otago. [more]

10/02/2017: Zespri Expands in Europe
Zespri will allow another 1800 hectares of its SunGold kiwifruit to be grown under license in Europe. [more]

10/02/2017: Chopped, sliced and diced...
Fields around Pukekohe are now striped with rows of onions, gently curing in the sun. They'll soon be heading into the packhouse where they'll be topped and tailed, graded and bagged for export. [more]

10/02/2017: Merino: A Story of Sheep
This radio documentary from 1950 feature interviews, narration and dramatisation. It focuses on the farming of merino sheep in the Marlborough region. The original recording is held at the Nga Taonga Sound & Vision archives in Christchurch. [more]

17/02/2017: Australian Fire and Flood
ABC rural news editor Brett Worthington fills us in on how farmers in New South Wales are getting on after days of temperatures in the high 30's .. the hottest day up to 47 degrees. Fires have ravaged tens of thousands of hectares and vets are checking sheep which maybe too traumatised to eat, or have  internal injuries, so will need to be put down. As well there are floods in Western Australia and one farmer had to ferry his sheep, 15 at a time, to safety. [more]

17/02/2017: Shear Brilliance
Des Williams is editor of Shearing magazine, a free publication that promotes the people and sport associated with the industry. [more]

17/02/2017: Landcorp Chair Traci Houpapa
Landcorp has had quite a change in focus in recent years. Environmental issues and marketing end products are now a big focus. The SOE has set up a marketing brand Pamu, which means "to farm" in Maori. [more]

17/02/2017: In the bull pen
The Te Mania Angus Stud at Conway Flat in North Canterbury has been in the Wilding family for four generations. Their goal is to breed with cutting-edge genetics while farming sustainability. [more]

24/02/2017: On The Wagon
The 25th Goldfields Cavalcade kicks off on Saturday. Coordinator Terry Davies says nearly 500 participants will trek over Central Otago's high country on horseback, by carriage and on foot, all aiming to meet up a week later in Omakau for a good old country hoedown. [more]

24/02/2017: Off the Beaten Track
Michele Connell and her husband Roy are dairy farmers on the outskirts of Hamilton. Their online business Off The Beaten Track links holidaymakers with farmers. [more]

24/02/2017: Let's Shake On It
Rob and Lydia Armstrong's house at Conway Flat was badly damaged by last November's earthquake. The sheep and beef farmers hope to start rebuilding as soon as the insurance paperwork is signed off. [more]

24/02/2017: A vet abroad
Veterinarian Samara Johnstone is from the tiny Hebridean Island of Islay. Currently working in New Zealand, She hopes to return there to farm one day. [more]

03/03/2017: Fit for farming
Ian Handcock's Fit for Farming movement encourages farmers to be active off the farm. One farmer is taking it to an extreme and will attempt to milk 4,000 cows in 12 hours. [more]

03/03/2017: Kiwi quinoa
On a rugged sheep and beef farm near Taihape, Dan and Jacqui Cottrell grow New Zealand's only commercial crop of the ancient South American grain. [more]

03/03/2017: Watching the fleece fly
Country Life was there when the handpiece buzzed at the 17th World Shearing and Woolhandling Championships in Invercargill. [more]

10/03/2017: Slip Slidin' Away
John McDowell manages a large sheep and beef farm at Orere Point south east of Auckland. It is scarred with slips following 220 millimetres of rain in just 12 hours this week. [more]

10/03/2017: Ramming it home
Tim and Sue Anderson have run Mt Guardian Perendales on their farm at Conway Flat since the mid '60s. Their son Woody is keen to take over the stud when his parents retire. [more]

10/03/2017: Living lightly on the land
Geoff Copstick farms angora goats and cattle on his 90 hectare Northland property. He and his wife Kate live "off the grid" and see living in harmony with the land as the ultimate sustainable lifestyle. [more]

17/03/2017: Champion Cheese
Fieke and Ben Meyer moved to NZ in 1984 and began introducing the people of Waikato to gouda cheese. Thirty-three years later, three of their children work in the family business. [more]

17/03/2017: Making Tracks
Country Life visits two families at Conway Flat in North Canterbury who run a private hill country walkway leading from windy hilltops to the cliffed coastline which connects their sheep and beef farms. [more]

24/03/2017: Country Life full episode for Friday 24 March 2017
Country Life this week's throwing gumboots at the rural games, is sorting blueberries and meets the angora farmer who chairs Child Fund in New Zealand. [more]

24/03/2017: Raising the Baa
Robert Gardyne, a sheep farmer from Oturehua in Central Otago, was crowned lamb Producer of the Decade at the recent Beef and Lamb New Zealand Golden Lamb Awards, aka the Glammies. [more]

24/03/2017: Sorting solutions
Seventeen years ago, the blueberry-growing Furniss family found out colour-sorting machines cost $1 million to import, so they had a crack at making one. Now their sorting machine business has a $30 million turnover and exports to 29 countries. [more]

24/03/2017: Goats give hope
Geoff Copstick, a Northland angora goat farmer, is also chairman of international aid agency ChildFund NZ. He says his rural roots mean he has a lot in common with aid projects involving animals and farming. [more]

24/03/2017: Tough as boots
At the recent Rural Games in Palmerston North events including olive-stone spitting and egg throwing and catching, along with speed tree climbing, speed shearing and gumboot throwing. [more]

31/03/2017: Full Episode for Friday March 24, 2017
High Peak Station, Taihape Tigers and biscuits for well-behaved horses. [more]

31/03/2017: Too Wet for Wine
Day after day of grey, rainy weather in Hawkes Bay has meant sugar levels in some grape blocks are falling short of wineries' requirements and some growers have been told their grapes are not needed. The CEO of NZ Wine Philip Gregan says growers spend a lot of money producing their crops but there's no income unless they are picked. [more]

31/03/2017: Taihape Tigers
Danny Mickleson has spent 18 years breeding designer rams. They've been dubbed Taihape Tigers. [more]

31/03/2017: Equine Eats
Angela Broadbent baked for days to perfect a crunchy cookie for horses. She now sells three-quarters of a tonne each week.  [more]

31/03/2017: Go with the Flow
Adopting best-practice farming systems and fencing off streams to improve water quality are ongoing tasks for James Guild and his son Hamish who farm around the headwaters of the Selwyn River in Canterbury. [more]

07/04/2017: Full Episode for Friday April 7, 2017
Awahou Stream Care Group, Potato Mesh Charles Merfield, Mike Mexted. [more]

07/04/2017: Helping Hand
Bay of Plenty farmer Mike Mexted considers himself very lucky. He only has surface flooding on his farm and has been able to take in cows from an inundated dairy property a few kilometres away at Edgecumbe. [more]

07/04/2017: Cover Story
Mesh cover laid over potato crops is proving effective in controlling potato pests and reducing potato blight without chemical sprays. [more]

07/04/2017: Planting for posterity
More than 50 years ago Jaap and Sue Van Dorser cleared and then planted up a small section of the Awahou Stream which flows into Lake Rotorua. Over 20 years ago they were joined by another couple and since then they've worked together every Wednesday morning, clearing and planting the river banks.  [more]

13/04/2017: Take that,Tutsan
Tutsan's days are numbered. Thanks to years of fund-raising and work by a team of mainly volunteers, the invasive weed is now on the menu for a moth and a beetle that have been brought to New Zealand to control it. Tutsan takes huge amounts of farmland out of production and costs the country millions in lost earnings. [more]

14/04/2017: Full Episode for Friday April 14, 2017
South Island Field Days, Tutsan Action Group, Kiwi Bites, Wheat Growing Record. [more]

14/04/2017: Top Crop
Ashburton farmer Eric Watson has become a Guinness World Record holder after producing the world's highest yielding crop of wheat. [more]

14/04/2017: Kiwi Bites
Kerikeri kiwifruit grower Sandy Mecredy wanted to hear her daughter and friends biting into golden wafers of thin kiwifruit, so ten years ago she started drying the fruit that was rejected by a nearby kiwifruit packhouse. [more]

14/04/2017: Take that, Tutsan
Tutsan's days are numbered. Thanks to years of fundraising and work by a team of mainly volunteers, the invasive weed is now on the menu for a moth and a beetle that have been brought to New Zealand to control it. Tutsan takes huge amounts of farmland out of production and costs the country millions in lost earnings. [more]

14/04/2017: Field Day For Farmers
Country Life's Cosmo Kentish-Barnes was very thankful for his gumboots when he visited the extremely muddy South Island Field Days in Kirwee. The three-day event is the oldest and biggest demonstration field days in New Zealand. [more]

21/04/2017: Full Episode for Friday April 21, 2017
Herlihy Family shearathon, Little River Support Group hosts the Giant Pumpkin Festival, and the Coronation Garden in Little River. [more]

21/04/2017: Country Bumpkin Pumpkin
The Little River Support Group hosts the Giant Pumpkin Festival every year on Anzac weekend. The old style country fair attracts hundreds of visitors and competitors from around Canterbury and all proceeds go to the Little River School. [more]

21/04/2017: Rukuhia War Letters
Rukuhia Homestead is just south of Hamilton. It's been owned by the Glenn family since 1925 and when Val Glenn moved into what had been her grandparents house, she found a box of letters written during World War Two. She has two of the letters on display in the homestead hallway. They were written by young men who remembered the Waikato property fondly. They never came home. They died aged 24 and 26 years. [more]

21/04/2017: Forget Me Not
The Coronation Garden in Little River is a living memorial for local men who died in WWI and WWII. Designed by local nurseryman Bruce King, the garden is packed with perennials, rhododendrons, flaxes and bulbs he's grown and planted himself. [more]

21/04/2017: Shearing for Michael
Neighbours, friends and strangers took to the boards recently in Whangamomona for a 24-hour shearathon to raise money for suicide prevention. Michael Herlihy, a talented shearer and the youngest of eight children, died last year at just 20. [more]

28/04/2017: Full Episode for 28 April 2017
Hazelnut harvesting, Regional wrap, Te Whare Ra and Wimbledon remembers. [more]

28/04/2017: Hazelnut Harvesting
Gilda Otway grows hazelnuts in the Puaha Valley on Banks Peninsula using permaculture and organic principles. [more]

28/04/2017: Time To Wine Down
Grapes came off early at the Te Whare Ra organic vineyard in Marlborough this year so were saved from damage that would have been delivered by Cyclone Debbie. Cosmo Kentish-Barnes catches up with Te Whare Ra winemaker Anna Flowerday. [more]

28/04/2017: Wimbledon Remembers
The Hawkes Bay community of Wimbledon has a permanent population of just 10, but at least 150 gather each year for its ANZAC Day service, followed by a free lunch at the tavern. [more]

05/05/2017: Country Life for 5 May 2017
Country Life for 5 May 2017. [more]

05/05/2017: Knock Out The Needle
Marlborough farmer Tim Struthers has spent several years trying to control Chilean Needle Grass on his sheep and beef farm near Seddon. The invasive weed can out-compete pasture grasses and its seed attaches easily to wool and can dig through a sheep's pelt and muscle. [more]

05/05/2017: Feedback: Margery Renwick
After hearing last week's feature about the Anzac Day service in the small town of Wimbledon, Margery Renwick wrote in. Her father was a school teacher there in the 1920s, and he and her mother used to ride a motorcycle with sidecar up to visit family and friends in Hastings. [more]

05/05/2017: Family Fruit
The Malley family are orchardists in Northland. They started out growing kiwifruit and avocados on their 30 hectare property near Whangarei but have recently added raspberries, blackberries and figs to the mix. They're grown in large tunnel houses in bags of coir, coconut husks. It's a medium that gives them total control over water and fertiliser requirements. It's a big operation employing 140 people at the busiest times of the year. [more]

12/05/2017: Full Episode for Friday May 5, 2017
The changing landscape of the Clarence River, dairy woes in Australia, the Regional Wrap, 17 years of advice to life-style block owners and bikes and bowties in Taumarunui. [more]

12/05/2017: Dairy Doldrums in Australia
Brett Worthington is the head of the rural news department for the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. He explains why some Australian dairy farmers are taking legal action against the company they supply. [more]

12/05/2017: Bow ties and backpacks
Julian Goulding has swapped city life and a corporate wardrobe for bare feet, a t-shirt and life in the King Country. He's moved to Taumarunui where he has started a custom-made bow tie business, works with students at the local high school, and shuttles cyclists and walkers to the Timber Trail. He says he's never been happier. [more]

12/05/2017: Lifestyle lessons
The Lifestyle Block website has been running for 17 years. It's kept up with the times running webinars and talk back forums. It has thousands of "hits" every day, and not just from New Zealanders. [more]

12/05/2017: Go with the flow
Last November's 7.8-magnitude earthquake has altered the course and flow of the Clarence River in southern Marlborough, creating new challenges for farmers and new possibilities for a local rafting operation. [more]

19/05/2017: Full Episode for Friday May 19, 2017
Country Life finds out about the first ever major Chinese/NZ government pastoral farming joint venture and where it's at now as Landcorp hands the management of the former Crafar farms back to Shanghai Pengxin, AgResearch scientist Nicole Schon works wonders with worms and Lyn Neeson and her daughter-in-law Monique Neeson are making old-fashioned lambs' wool blankets. [more]

19/05/2017: Eco System Engineers
AgResearch scientist Nicole Schon works wonders with worms. Her research shows a healthy worm population can promote pasture growth as well as help water move through soils. As part of her work she set up The Great Kiwi Earthworm Survey in 2015 to find out where earthworms are located. Farmers were asked to participate in the survey to help build a national picture of earthworms. [more]

19/05/2017: Shear Warmth
Lyn Neeson and her daughter-in-law Monique Neeson were looking at the wool cheque from the family's remote King Country farm and thought there must be a way to earn more from wool. They now make old-fashioned lambs' wool blankets. [more]

19/05/2017: Shanghai Pengxin Go It Alone
This week the state owned farming company Landcorp came to the end of its four year sharemilking agreement to run 16 central and southern North Island farms for the Chinese company Shanghai Pengxin. The high profile farms were formerly owned by the Crafar family and went into receivership seven years ago. Turning the rundown farms around was much more difficult than either party predicted. It's been a testing time but both parties are proud of the progress that's been made. [more]

26/05/2017: Country Life for Friday 26 May 2017
Country Life for Friday 26 May 2017. [more]

26/05/2017: A Fright for Feijoas?
Frans de Jong grows thousands of feijoa trees near Matamata in Waikato. He's keeping a close eye out for evidence of guava moth or myrtle rust in his orchard. [more]

26/05/2017: Sustainable Solutions
The Sustainable Farming Fund is about to notch up its 1000th project. Since the fund's inception 17 years ago, $135 million has been allocated to projects initiated by farmers, foresters and horticulturalists across the country. [more]

26/05/2017: Berries and Cream
Jan McIntyre is a former dairy farmer turned blueberry grower who lives between Morrinsville and Matamata in Waikato. She teamed up with jersey farmers from down the road and now uses their cream to make artisan ice-cream. [more]

26/05/2017: Let's Get Trapping
In order to control rats, stoats, possums and feral cats on Banks Peninsula, ecologist Alison Evans has started a library in Little River that loans traps and cages to locals free of charge. She also runs a pest control programme in the Okuti Valley Scenic Reserve, a rare remnant of Podocarp forest that is home to nesting morepork. [more]

02/06/2017: Country Life for 2 June 2017
Kurow stock agent Madison Taylor, crayfisherman Dennis Burkhart and farming on Motutapu Island. [more]

02/06/2017: Riding High
Kurow stock agent Madison Taylor is the Heartland Bank Young Auctioneer of the Year and has competed as a bareback rider in an annual Trans-Tasman rodeo challenge. [more]

02/06/2017: Potty About Crayfish
Fishermen Dennis and Trevor Burkhart bought a small processing factory in Ward on Marlborough's east coast in 1975 so they could process the crayfish they were catching for the local market. Forty two years later the brothers, who used to pull up their crayfish pots by hand, employ about 30 people and are one of New Zealand's leading exporters of live crayfish to China. [more]

02/06/2017: Making Motutapu a Legacy
Motutapu Island in the Hauraki Gulf is pest-free DOC-owned land and home to brown kiwi, saddlebacks and takahe – but the main activity comes from a commercial beef farm. [more]

09/06/2017: Full Episode for Friday June 8, 2017
Double Dutch, Coming of Age - Big River turns 20, A View from Above, Deer Diary and the Regional Wrap. [more]

09/06/2017: Deer Diary
The chair of Deer Industry New Zealand, Andy MacFarlane, says deer farmers have a spring in their step because of strong venison prices, expanding markets and good, stable returns for velvet. [more]

09/06/2017: A View from Above
Drones are increasingly being used in forestry, farming and orcharding. They're zeroing in on diseased trees in forestry plantations, are making sure kiwifruit growers haven't planted more gold kiwifruit than their license allows and are identifying dangerous slopes on farms. [more]

09/06/2017: Big River FM turns 20
Big River FM hit the airwaves in the Northland town of Dargaville on Valentine's Day 1997. Today, thanks to the determination of passionate volunteers, the radio station is stronger than ever. [more]

09/06/2017: Double Dutch
Karin Bos and Tineke van de Heide – registered nurses originally from the Netherlands – are now living the dream on a farmlet in Banks Peninsula. [more]

16/06/2017: Full Episode for Friday June 16, 2017
Popular Poplars, A Hunting We Will Go, Canaries of the Waterways, Dr Tom: Health Checks @ Fieldays, Perfectly Pink and the Regional Wrap. [more]

16/06/2017: Perfectly Pink
In the past few years there's been a new feature on the rural landscape. Pink Bales of silage have appeared - and when they're lined up and interspersed with white bales they look like giant marshmallows in paddocks. Farmers have made a conscious decision to go pink as part of a fundraising effort for a breast cancer charity Sweet Louise. [more]

16/06/2017: Dr Tom: Health Checks @ Fieldays
Rural people often have poorer health outcomes than their urban counterparts so with that in mind, for the first time at fieldays there was a dedicated health hub. [more]

16/06/2017: Canaries of the Waterways
Caddisflies, mayflies and stoneflies are considered 'canaries of the waterways' as they thrive when water quality is good and the first to disappear when it isn't. [more]

16/06/2017: A Hunting We Will Go
Simon Guild runs the High Peak Game Estate on the family farm in the Canterbury High Country. Trophy hunters from around the world visit the scenic property to shoot red stag, fallow bucks, wild goat, feral sheep and wild boar. [more]

16/06/2017: Popular Poplars
Former forester Tim Forde believes the humble poplar is one of the most under-rated trees in New Zealand. The trees on his farm are being milled and used for decking, polo mallets, toys, furniture, fence battens and panelling. [more]

23/06/2017: Country Life full episode for Friday 23 June 2017
Full Episode for Friday June 23, 2017: Taewa for Tea, Good Growers, Pens for Calves and the Regional Wrap. [more]

23/06/2017: Pens for Calves
Dairy farmers around the country are having to build new pens to hold calves about to be trucked off their properties. The new regulations for the design of the pens aim to limit opportunities for the animals to be mishandled. [more]

23/06/2017: Good Growers
Marian and Graham Hirst started growing applies 28 years ago. They've had a good 2016, winning a number of business awards, but it hasn't always been easy on their Hawkes Bay orchard. [more]

23/06/2017: Taewa for Tea
Māori potatoes (taewa) grown at Koukourārata Marae have been selling like hot cakes at farmers' markets around Christchurch – and all profits are going back to the marae. [more]

30/06/2017: Full Episode for Friday June 30, 2017
The Manawahe Bunny Hunt, Keep the Kōura in Kaikōura, High Spec Guns, Blade of Glory and the Regional Wrap.   [more]

30/06/2017: Blade of Glory
Young Geraldine shearer Allan Oldfield has had a successful season in the northern hemisphere with several blade shearing wins at agricultural shows in the United Kingdom and Ireland. [more]

30/06/2017: High Spec Guns
The newest drench guns can now be fired every second or so; they record and send information about every shot, calibrate automatically taking into account the weight of the animal and ensure workers are delivering drenches correctly. [more]

30/06/2017: Putting the kōura in Kaikōura
Vince Scully and Mary Shanahan farm kōura (native freshwater crayfish) at Waikōura Springs in Kaikōura. They also run daily tours of their unusual fish farm, but since the November earthquake tourism has dried up. [more]

30/06/2017: The Great Manawahe Bunny Hunt
Every year, hunters and locals from Manawahe head out onto farmland and into the hills to shoot rabbits and other pests for the district's bunny hunt – a community event with games, skinning competitions and prizes. [more]

07/07/2017: Full Episode for Friday July 7, 2017
Iwi Fruit, Otorohanga's Big Night Out, Taking Orders and the Regional Wrap. [more]

07/07/2017: Taking Orders
Orders for avocado trees have sky-rocketed in recent years. Stephen Wade's nursery has gone from selling five- thousand trees a year 15 years ago to 150-thousand today. [more]

07/07/2017: Otorohanga's Big Night Out
Every year for the past twenty, Otorohanga businesses have chipped in to put on a party for the district's farmers. It's their way of saying 'thank you' to the farmers for spending money in the town. [more]

07/07/2017: Iwi Fruit
Māori kiwifruit growers will now have a collective voice in the industry and hopefully soon some seats at the Zespri table thanks to the new Māori Kiwifruit Growers' Forum. It's a sign of good things happening in Māoridom, says the chairman of Ngai Tukairangi iwi, which has a $100 million kiwifruit portfolio. [more]

14/07/2017: Full Episode for 14 July 2017
  Pining for Nuts, Red Onion Royalty, A Memoir on Kohlrabi, Just a Drop and the Regional Wrap.   [more]

14/07/2017: Just a Drop
A summer with lower sunshine hours, combining with a late harvest when birds damage fruit, is making for very poor olive oil volumes this year. Some growers are over 50% down. Olive oil producers from Northland and Waiheke have been hoping to buy oil from Wairarapa, but the crop drop is nationwide. [more]

14/07/2017: The Ropers – Red Onion Royalty
Lance and Makereta Roper's 62-hectare property near Lincoln produces 500 to 800 tonnes of red peeled onions a year, as well as growing pumpkins, peas and beans. The family business employs eight full-time staff and is the largest grower of red onions in the South Island. [more]

14/07/2017: A Memoir on Kohlrabi
Food fads come and go. At present a procession of so-called 'super foods' are dangled in front of us, promising, if not eternal life , then eternal "wellness". We have kale, micro greens, coconut water, quinoa and the implication that anything containing gluten will lead to an early grave. This set former NZ Dairy Board PR guru Neville Martin ruminating on the vagaries of food fashion, and he was prompted to pen a memoir on growing kohlrabi. [more]

14/07/2017: Pining for Nuts
Pinoli Premium Pine Nuts have planted about 550,000 European stone pine trees on 550 hectares in Marlborough. Pinoli is the only commercial pine nut producer in the southern hemisphere. [more]

21/07/2017: Full Episode for Friday July 21, 2017
Talking Bull at Te Mania, Milking It and Loving It, Worth a Thousand Words, Finding Farmers and the Regional Wrap. [more]

21/07/2017: Finding Farmers
A Lower Hutt Rudolf Steiner School is looking for farmers nationwide who'd be happy to host two 15 year old students for two weeks in mid September. Students are expected to work 5 to 7 hours a day as well as help with household chores. A koha contribution is given towards their living costs. The farms don't have to be biodynamic or organic, the farmers just need to have an empathy with this style of farming. Parents arrange travel to and from the farm. Hosts must agree to a police vetting check. For more details: [more]

21/07/2017: Worth a Thousand Words
Internationally acclaimed artist Graham Hoete, aka Mr G, is travelling around New Zealand painting murals on the walls of Farmlands stores. They tell the stories of the local area. [more]

21/07/2017: Milking It and Loving It
When 17 year old Carlos Delos Santos arrived in New Zealand from the Philippines he hopped on a push-bike and went looking for work, He couldn't tell a cow from a bull yet was given a chance on a dairy farm as a relief milker. Now, 16 years later. Carlos and his wife Bernice are well on their way to farm ownership. Earlier this year they were judged one of the top dairy farming couples in the country at the New Zealand Dairy Industry Awards. [more]

21/07/2017: Talking Bull at Te Mania
Over a hundred two-year-old bulls went under the hammer at the 50th Te Mania Aberdeen Angus bull sale at Conway Flat. All but one sold and prices were buoyant. While the auction was going on, locals cooked up a feast for the farmers who had come from around the country to attend the sale. [more]

28/07/2017: Full Episode for Friday July 28, 2017
First Pick, Smart As, Across the Ditch and The Regional Wrap. [more]

28/07/2017: Across the Ditch
Brett Worthington from the Australian Broadcasting Corporation on the Murray Darling Basin irrigation scandal and Murray Goulburn has announced its milk intake is less than expected. [more]

28/07/2017: Smart-As Farming
A new, easy to use environmental monitoring system that will let farms track their environmental performance over the years. It will provide data which proves the quality of their farm environment is improving and it may help gain better access to high value markets overseas. [more]

28/07/2017: First pick avocados are here
Sunchaser Avocados are the first avocados in New Zealand to make it to market each season. They are grown on Motiti Island where it is three degrees warmer in winter and three degrees cooler in summer than on mainland Bay of Plenty orchards. Growing avocados on an island is an expensive business so the owners count on a premium for their early fruit to make it all worthwhile. [more]

04/08/2017: Full Episode for Friday August 4, 2017
There's a squawk-fest on Country Life - the team is at the Waikato Poultry and pigeon clubs annual show. [more]

04/08/2017: Perfect Persimmons
A Gisborne based exporter, First Fresh, is sending a trial shipment of local persimmons to China within the next week to ten days. It's the first new fruit to gain market access since the NZ-China Free Trade Agreement was signed in 2008. Roughly half New Zealand's persimmon crop is grown in Gisborne and more trees have gone in the past few years. [more]

04/08/2017: Out on the farm
Calving's an incredibly busy time on farm but Carol Stiles manages to sneak a few minutes with vet Steve Harkness while he's working on a 1,000-cow Waikato farm. [more]

04/08/2017: A Farmer Abroad - Chile
An occasional series talking to New Zealanders working on the land overseas. Eighteen years ago Chris White was tossing up whether to buy a farm in New Zealand or to go dairy farming in Chile. He chose life in South America and loves it. [more]

04/08/2017: Should meat be on the menu?
Australian author and journalist David Mason-Jones is selling copies of his book 'Should meat be on the menu?' at the Te Mania Angus Bull Sale in North Canterbury. The book explores the widely held view that farm livestock are responsible for an enormous net production of new global warming gases. [more]

04/08/2017: A lot to crow about
This year, 1250 birds were entered into the Waikato Poultry and Pigeon Club's championship show. It's a beauty pageant that organisers hope will delight members of the public so they too will decide to keep some elegant fowls. [more]

11/08/2017: Book Winner
Country Life received lots of emails for the draw to win the book "Should Meat be on The Menu" by Australian author David Mason-Jones. [more]

11/08/2017: Full Episode for Friday August 11, 2017
On Country Life this week four people get around the table and talk about issues affecting farming, disruptive technologies like synthetic meat and milk, the environment and bobby calves. Also, James Thomson farms a large flock of Ile de France-cross sheep on 1300 hectares of extensive, riverbed-type country between Christchurch airport and the Waimakariri River. [more]

11/08/2017: Farming Talk Fest: part one
Country Life hosts a round table discussion looking at some of the key challenges facing farming in New Zealand. Two people who earn their living as dairy farmers as two people who argue current farming models need changing.  [more]

11/08/2017: Do Ewe Baa English?
James Thomson runs 2,400 Ile de France-cross ewes at Island Farm on 1,300 hectares of extensive, riverbed-type country between Christchurch airport and the Waimakariri River.  [more]

11/08/2017: Farming Talk Fest: part two
Country Life hosts a round table discussion looking at some of the key challenges facing farming in New Zealand. Two people who earn their living as dairy farmers as two people who argue current farming models need changing.  [more]

18/08/2017: Full Episode for Friday August 18, 2017
The Icing on the Cake, Free As a Bird, Taking on the Giant,and the Regional Wrap. [more]

18/08/2017: Taking on the Giant
The giant willow aphid is infesting willows, apple and pear trees, some native trees and shelterbelts on some kiwifruit orchards. Entomologist Stephanie Sopow is heading to the United States to search for and bring back a tiny wasp known to kill the aphid. The parasitic wasp will undergo two years of testing to see if it is suitable for release in New Zealand. [more]

18/08/2017: Free As a Bird
Kelly Phelps rescues 100 to 200 battery hens every week. Before the chooks head off to lifestyle blocks, urban sections and dairy farms around the country, she prepares them for 'life on the outside'  [more]

18/08/2017: Bake to the Future
Baking and preserving enthusiasts Edna Crawford and Ruth Wheeler have been on the North Canterbury A&P show circuit for over 50 years. [more]

24/08/2017: Country Life for 25 August 2017
Full Episode for Friday 25 August 2017. [more]

25/08/2017: Kiwis Farming in Australia
Dairy farmers Kirsti and Stuart Keightley went to from Northland to Australia in 1996 with the aim of farming more land. Now they are milking 1100 cows on two farms in south-west Victoria. [more]

25/08/2017: Gutsy Gusta Peach: part one
Gusta Peach came to New Zealand in 1951 to be a land girl. Now 87, her story roams from a human skull on her mantlepiece to lost love with a married man and buried cars in Indonesia during WW2. [more]

25/08/2017: Young growers cultivating success
The annual Young Grower of the Year competition celebrates the talents of fruit and vegetable growers under 30. This year's competition demonstrated that the horticulture industry is in excellent hands. [more]

25/08/2017: Gutsy Gusta Peach: part two
Gusta Peach came to New Zealand in 1951 to be a land girl. Now 87, her story roams from a human skull on her mantlepiece to lost love with a married man and buried cars in Indonesia during WW2. [more]

01/09/2017: Full Episode for Friday September 1, 2017
The Future is Looking Sweet, Carrot Specialists, Challenges to Primary Producers and the Regional Wrap. [more]

01/09/2017: KPMG's Ian Proudfoot on challenges to primary producers
Ian Proudfoot says an agraian revolution is happening world wide and current farming models will have to change. [more]

01/09/2017: Carrot Gold
Sue Deadman has been growing vegetables for 30 years, specialising in carrots for more than 20. You can taste the difference between a sweet Ohakune carrot and those grown elsewhere in NZ, she says. [more]

01/09/2017: As busy as a bee
James Malcolm first got the honey bug from a beekeeper who worked on his parents cropping farm near Ashburton. Now the hard working 29-year-old owns thousands of hives. [more]

08/09/2017: Full Episode for Friday September 8 2017
Full Episode for Friday September 8 2017. [more]

08/09/2017: Country Life Feedback for 8 September 2017
Country Life Feedback for 8 September 2017. [more]

08/09/2017: Country Pubs - Lake Ianthe Tavern
A series of short radio programmes produced in 1986 by Brendan Gray looking at some of New Zealand's more colourful historic hotels. Lake Ianthe Tavern in South Westland once had a mobile licence so it could move as the road was pushed further south. Publican Carol Mulholland talks about some of the hotel's traditions and holding a drinking session in the bush once a year. [more]

08/09/2017: Dairy NZ fronts up
Dairy NZ head Dr Tim Mackle says he's happy to talk to environmental groups about cleaning up waterways, but blanket calls for fewer cows or an end to irrigation aren't the way to go.  [more]

08/09/2017: Under the Knife and On the Go - New Zealand's Surgical Bus
Country Life joins nurses, patients and the surgeon onboard New Zealand's mobile surgical bus. For 15 years, the 'operating theatre on wheels' has been rolling into rural towns to deliver health care. [more]

15/09/2017: Full Episode for Friday September 15, 2017
Big Ears Llama Ranch, A Canine 'Konnichiwa', Paua Plastic and the Regional Wrap. [more]

15/09/2017: Bio-plastic fantastic
Fruit and vegetable growers and other primary producers are looking with new eyes at the waste they produce. Now paua shells, flax, waste from grapes and kiwifruit can be used as ingredients in bio-plastics. [more]

15/09/2017: The Kiwi sheep dogs working in Japan
For 20 years, Ross MacDonald and his teams of NZ shepherds and working dogs have entertained millions of people at farm shows in Japan. [more]

15/09/2017: For the llove of llamas
There are only two guanaco studs outside of South America - one is run by Keith Payne in North Canterbury. Big Ears Llama Ranch is home to around 50 of the sturdy camelids. [more]

22/09/2017: Full Episode for Friday September 22, 2017
Miraka on the Move, Trees-a-Plenty, Country Pubs, Beetlemania and the Regional Wrap. [more]

22/09/2017: Beetlemania
Dr Shaun Forgie is a dung beetle expert specialising in dung beetle reproduction, ecology and evolution. His company, Dung Beetle Innovations, supplies farmers with dung beetle packages to assist with the removal of pastoral dung from agricultural livestock. [more]

22/09/2017: Tackling red needle cast
Red needle cast is a relatively new disease hitting pine plantations in New Zealand and retarding tree growth. Plant pathologist Dr. Nari Williams has been looking at ways to manage it. [more]

22/09/2017: Tiny trees aplenty
Rangiora Nursery grows more four million tiny trees a year for high-quality forest and shelter tree cuttings. Owner Derrick Parry employs up to 60 seasonal workers at the busiest times. [more]

22/09/2017: Country Pubs - Blackball Hilton
A series of short radio programmes produced in 1986 by Brendan Gray looking at some of New Zealand's more colourful historic hotels. From Nga Taonga Sound and Vision Archives. [more]

22/09/2017: Miraka's on the moove
The small Māori-owned dairy company Miraka exports milk powder to 26 countries from a factory near Lake Taupo. Recently, they've expanded into value-added UHT milk and have just launched a fruit smoothie. [more]

29/09/2017: Full Episode for Friday September 29, 2017
On Country Life old working dogs are given a new life, the programme's just clocked up its 1000th show ...we reminisce about some of the stories covered in that first year, Waipawa Butchery in Central Hawkes Bay. [more]

29/09/2017: One Thousand Programmes... and Counting
Country Life first went to air in January 1997 - it was the year the rabbit calici virus was smuggled into the country and milk trains were trialled. [more]

29/09/2017: Pleased to meat you
Farming couple Duncan Smith and Annabel Tapley-Smith took over the butcher's shop in the central Hawkes Bay town of Waipawa this July. They're selling beef and lamb from their farm just down the road and business is taking off. [more]

29/09/2017: Old dogs, new homes
In the past five years, Retired Working Dogs Adoption has rehomed hundreds of huntaways, eye dogs and beardies that are too old to work, have been injured or are just not up to the job. [more]

06/10/2017: Full Episode for Friday October 6, 2017
Chris Thorn has combined his love of hunting and curing wild meats into a business that produces venison salami from locally shot deer; unpicking the DNA of pine trees with Scion and biological farming in Canterbury. [more]

06/10/2017: NZ Young Farmers Windfall
The New Zealand Young Farmers organisation has been gifted a 74 hectare dairy farm (by the late Donald Pearson) on the outskirts of Auckland. The aim is to use the property as a demonstration farm for city kids. Plans are still being finalised but Young Farmers national chairman Jason Te Brake says they hope to showcase horticulture, sheep and beef, and dairy operations, as well as some of the primary industry roles needed beyond the farm gate. [more]

06/10/2017: However you slice it
Chris Thorn turned his passion for hunting and curing wild meats into a business that produces venison salami from locally shot deer. He and his wife Sally's Gathered Game salami sells in in specialty food stores around New Zealand. [more]

06/10/2017: To-wood the future
Precision-bred trees will be central to our economy as wood-based products replace plastic and glass fibre in laptop cases, car interiors and even aeroplanes, a molecular geneticist says. [more]

06/10/2017: Down to earth: the benefits of biological farming
The cornerstone of soil consultant Rob Flynn's philosophy is that agriculture is a biological system, not a chemical system. One of his clients is North Canterbury farmer Russell Rudd, who has been using biological nutrients to enhance crop yields and animal performance on his 600-hectare beef, sheep and deer farm for the past nine years. [more]

13/10/2017: Full Episode for Friday October 6, 2017
Exciting prospects for our cross bred wool thanks to high value products in the USA, and country golf - just how do those clubs keep going... [more]

13/10/2017: A wealth of opportunities for NZ wool in the States
Stephen Fookes is a US-based New Zealander manufacturing three, high-value NZ wool-based products for American customers: wool pillows, wool chilly bins, wool insulation panels [more]

13/10/2017: A Cafe in the Corner
Pirinoa Station has been in the same family for 140 years. Now the old blacksmith's shop, in a tiny corner of the farm, has been transformed into a cafe. [more]

13/10/2017: How country clubs earn their bread and putter
A few of New Zealand's 400 golf courses have 1,000-plus members, but others just a couple of dozen. Country Life visits four country courses in the North Island to see how they are managing to keep the clubhouse doors open. [more]

20/10/2017: Full Episode for Friday October 20, 2017
Mangarara Station, The Power of Poo, Precision Agriculture and the Regional Wrap. [more]

20/10/2017: Precision Agriculture
South Australian farmer Mark Branson is in Hamilton for The International Precision Agriculture Conference. [more]

20/10/2017: The Power of Poo
A prototype methane recovery system is up and running on a 900 cow farm in Southland. Dairy Green agricultural and engineering consultant Quinton Scandrett says it took three years to plan and build the system. He says performance has exceeded forecasts and cow manure now provides 30KW electrical power and 60KW hot water per hour. It can power the majority of the farm's energy needs, including running an electric farm bike. [more]

20/10/2017: Mangarara Station: 'Food choices have a big effect on the environment'
The Harts farm a 610 hectare property in Central Hawkes Bay. Holistic farming is their aim, with the catchphrase, earth care, people care, and fair share. They have pigs, sheep, beef cattle and milking cows, and chickens as well as heaps of visitors. A Japanese man and his family live on a corner of the farm and are starting to grow organic vegetables. Teruhito left Japan to get away from the fall out of the Fukushima nuclear disaster. There's also a lodge or cute cabin for people to stay in. Mangarara's the first recipient of money from the Air NZ Environmental Trust set up in 2007. [more]

01/12/2017: Full Episode for Friday December 1, 2017
Wairere Rams - Tough Nuts, The Drunken Nanny, Kai and Culture and the Regional Wrap [more]

01/12/2017: Food for Thought
Emma Johnson has edited and complied a book that looks at how our food impacts our culture and the people involved in creating local food identities. Kai and Culture - Food stories from Aotearoa is published by Freerange Press in Christchurch. [more]

01/12/2017: The Drunken Nanny
Wairarapa sheep and beef farming couple Amanda and Lindsey Goodman have now added dairy goats to the mix. Lindsey squeezes in milking once a day and Amanda makes award-winning fresh goats cheese. [more]

01/12/2017: Wairere rams - tough nuts
A careful breeding programme in the tough Wairarapa Hill country produces hardy rams that can cope with most conditions the New Zealand countryside throws at them. [more]

08/12/2017: Full Episode for Friday December 8, 2017
Blades of Glory, Meaty Mushrooms, Forests for Farmers, California Wild Fires and the Regional Wrap. [more]

08/12/2017: California Wild Fires
John Grether grows 400 hectares of mandarins, lemons and avocados in California's Ventura County. For the time being his orchard is safe from the raging wild fires but some of the people he works with have lost their homes. [more]

08/12/2017: Forests for Farmers
The Forest Owners Association says there are terrific opportunities for farmers to get into forestry now the government's announced an ambitious scheme to plant an extra billion trees in the next decade. [more]

08/12/2017: Meaty Mushrooms
Clive Thompson's foray into mushroom growing started when he was at school. More than 50 years later he is still at it and now picks seven tonnes of mushrooms a week from his growing sheds near Carterton in Wairarapa. He specialises in brown button and brown flat mushrooms. Clive will be looking forward to his one day off soon; his mushrooms are picked every day of the year apart from Christmas day. [more]

08/12/2017: Blades of Glory
Allan and Phil Oldfield are professional blade shearers from Geraldine. Shearing has taken Allan around the world in the past year. While shearing a mob of finn-cross sheep at Russell Brodie's farm at Rangitata in South Canterbury, they enlighten Cosmo Kentish-Barnes about the art of shearing with giant scissors. [more]

15/12/2017: Full Episode for Friday December 15, 2017
Inundated and Indisposed: A Story of Flood Recover Part One, Inundated and Indisposed: A Story of Flood Recover Part Two, La Vie en Rose, On the road with Sister Christine and the Regional Wrap. [more]

15/12/2017: On the road with Sister Christine
Meet Sister Christine Henry. She is a Brisbane nun and registered nurse who has spent the past 10 years travelling more than 950,000 kilometres to help families in the bush. [more]

15/12/2017: Inundated and Indisposed - A Story of Flood Recovery: Part One
in April, hundreds of hectares of farmland were underwater and thousands of cows were trucked to other regions. Country Life discovers many farmers are still picking up the pieces. [more]

15/12/2017: La Vie en Rose
Steve Moffatt's parents were the first commercial rose growers in New Zealand, starting in 1949. Business has blossomed since Steve joined in 1972, and now they're cutting more than 3 million stems a year. [more]

15/12/2017: Inundated and Indisposed A Story of Flood Recovery: Part Two
Farmland is still falling into the Rangitaiki River, some river flats still can't be grazed. The local farmers say something has to be done because they can't keep farming like this. [more]

26/01/2018: Full Episode for Friday December 26, 2017
Curious Croppers, Growing Greens, Harvesting Blackcurrants and the Regional Wrap. [more]

26/01/2018: King Tides Devastate Farms
More than 90 percent of the pasture on Andrew Davis' Miranda farm has been killed by sea water sitting on his paddocks for days. His farm was inundated by king tides and a storm in earlier this month. [more]

26/01/2018: Harvesting Blackcurrants
The blackcurrant crop has been harvested and volume is down on last year says Geoff Heslop, a Canterbury blackcurrant grower, cropping farmer and chairman of Blackcurrants New Zealand. [more]

26/01/2018: Growing Greens
Spring Collective is a co-operatively run organic market garden. A year ago Penny Sewell, Dominique Schacherer and Logan Kerr pooled their resources, secured an eight hectare block in Leeston and started growing vegetables. Now they employ three full-time staff and are looking for more fertile land to lease. Their business supplies fresh produce to the local community through farmers markets, veggie boxes, restaurants, and organic wholesalers. [more]

26/01/2018: Curious Croppers
Heirloom tomatoes can be gnarly, luscious, beautiful and extremely difficult to grow. Angela and Anthony Tringham like to grow 'show off' tomatoes. They persevere with about 40 varieties in their greenhouses near Clevedon, south-east of Auckland. [more]

02/02/2018: Full Episode for Friday February 2, 2018
Forging Ahead, Dinky Donkeys, Public garden helps refugees settle, farm consultant Gary Massicks and the Regional Wrap. [more]

02/02/2018: Guest
Farm consultant Gary Massicks says the feed cupboard is bare for many downland Manawatu farmers. [more]

02/02/2018: Public garden helps refugees settle
It has only taken half a hectare of land to make regional Victoria, Australia feel like Africa. [more]

02/02/2018: Dinky donkeys in high demand
American Miniature Mediterranean donkeys were introduced to New Zealand 17 years ago. The little, very expensive donkeys can all be traced back to the island of Sardinia and range in size from 76cm to 90cm tall. [more]

02/02/2018: Forging Ahead
The blacksmith's shop in Teddington opened for business in 1889, and after years lying semi-derelict is now restored to a working forge – one of the few left in the country. [more]

09/02/2018: Full Episode for Friday February 9, 2018
The Scent of Lavender, Neville Martin's Musings, Happily Hydroponic, New Zealand India Apple Partnership, Fruit Logistica and the Regional Wrap. [more]

09/02/2018: Fruit Logistica
Our guest this week is the chief executive of New Zealand Apples and Pears, Alan Pollard. He's in Berlin, Germany at present attending a massive fresh produce trade show called Fruit Logistica. Over sixty thousand people attend the event. It's a very important show because it's the time when exporters set up their programmes into Europe for the coming season. Alan is there with New Zealand apple exporters [more]

09/02/2018: New Zealand India Apple Partnership
New Zealand apple experts are working with growers in Himachal Pradesh to improve production of the region's apple trees. [more]

09/02/2018: Happily Hydroponic
Phil Tregidga's family pioneered hydroponic growing in New Zealand. Almost four decades later he's still using the hydroponic system to grow all manner of herbs and vegetables with his wife Jenny and new boss, their daughter Liz. [more]

09/02/2018: Neville Martin's Musings
Last year we had a musing penned by Neville Martin. He was the Dairy Board's spokesman for many years, and he was talking about growing kohlrabi in the days well well before it was fashionable. After going to the effort of growing it, his father deemed it unfit for eating. Today he's grazing over various farming terms that he picked up as a young child during many farm visits. [more]

09/02/2018: The scent of lavender
Jason and Trisha Delamore purchased Lavender Hill, a three hectare property 30 minutes north west of Auckland city, two years ago. It is a commercial enterprise with lavender plants, a lavender still, 400 olive trees, 200 lemon trees, alpacas and a B and B. They also host hundreds of overseas tourists during the lavender growing season. They've developed a Limoncello and lavender-infused gin. This is a couple who don't appear to sleep. [more]

16/02/2018: Full Episode for Friday February 16, 2018
High Fliers, Testing Time for Wool, Crocs and Cattle don't Mix, Heilala Vanilla and the Regional Wrap. [more]

16/02/2018: The story of Heilala Vanilla
Our guest today is the co-founder of the New Zealand vanilla company Heilala Vanilla, John Ross. He's in Tonga at present where they have around 40 vanilla farmers producing for them on the island of 'Eua which was right on the path of Cyclone Gita this week. They have other farms on Vava'u which escaped damage. John's on Vava'u and he hasn't been to Eua yet, but says he can guess what it looks like because he's seen cyclone [more]

16/02/2018: Crocs and Cattle don't Mix
The Mary River in the Northern Territory is one of the most croc-populated waterways in the world. It's also the boundary for Annaburroo Station, and that causes big problems for Adrian Phillips who estimates he loses more than a 100 head of cattle each year in crocodile attacks. From ABC reporter Lisa Herbert. [more]

16/02/2018: Testing Time for Wool
The Wool Testing Authority in Napier tests bales of wool for fibre length, colour, micron, moisture and vegetable matter so that buyers know exactly what they're buying. The testing lets them predict how that particular bale of wool will perform once it's scoured and ready for the next stage of processing. The WTA also tests other textiles such as hi viz material to see it meets NZ codes of compliance. [more]

16/02/2018: High Fliers
Country Life heads to the top of Mount Murchison for the 2018 Hang Gliding Nationals. [more]

23/02/2018: Full Episode for Friday February 23, 2018
Country Life meets a couple who try to live self sufficiently on their piece of paradise in the Kauaeranga Valley, near Thames. [more]

23/02/2018: Ian Proudfoot
KPMG's global head of agribusiness, Ian Proudfoot, has five topics on his mind: new food protein choices, large multi-national companies swallowing up small companies, Biosecurity issues in New Zealand, farmer resilience, and Mount Albert Grammar School's farm. [more]

23/02/2018: Dairy Woman of the Year
Mid-Canterbury farmer and Fonterra Dairy Woman of the Year, Jessie Chan-Dorman, tells Cosmo her remarkable family story that begins when her mum arrived in New Zealand from Hong Kong as an 11-year-old orphan and was placed with a family in Invercargill. Jessie and her husband Hayden lease 420 hectares and milk 950 cows at Dorie. Prior to farming she received an honours degree in animal science and has worked in various roles across policy, research and development and sustainable farming. [more]

23/02/2018: Pakaraka Permaculture
Niva and Yotam Kay grow vegetables on just 1000 square metres of land in the Kauaeranga Valley and last year produced a staggering 8 tonnes of vegetables from it. They say they can do even better. [more]

02/03/2018: Full Episode for Friday March 2, 2018
Country Life's nibbling on flowers and hears about the success of Februdairy - a month long social media campaign to celebrate dairying… Also, the team goes behind the scenes at the Hurunui Race and Gala Day. The biennial community event was held recently at Medbury in North Canterbury and attracted more than 2000 race-goers. Proceeds from the gate are destined for cancer support groups in Hurunui, Cheviot and Amberley... [more]

02/03/2018: Februdairy
Thousands upon thousands of posts have been made during a social media campaign celebrating dairying during the month of February. Country Life talks to Dr Jude Capper, the woman behind Februdairy. [more]

02/03/2018: Edible flower trade coming up roses
Tamsin Wilson's carefully picked flowers are airfreighted twice a week to Hong Kong, where chefs and home cooks are snapping them up. [more]

02/03/2018: A day at the races Hurunui-style
The Hurunui Race and Gala Day is a highlight on the local calendar. The biennial community event was held recently at Medbury in North Canterbury and attracted more than 2000 race-goers. [more]

09/03/2018: Full Episode for Friday 9 March 2018
[image:144173:full] Country life meets up with a very cute sheep breed that's new to New Zealand it has black feet, ears, knees and face. Inter-Weave is the Southern Hemisphere's largest woollen fabric manufacturer [more]

09/03/2018: Hip Hop Harvest
Kim McGlashen of Mac Hops says picking is well underway at his properties in Motueka and in the Moutere Valley near Nelson. He is also a shareholder in New Zealand Hops, a grower co-operative that processes, markets and ships most of the sought-after hops grown in the region. [more]

09/03/2018: Denis Wright - Pleasant Point Memories
Denis Wright is a former high school English teacher - and now full time writer of young adult fiction, and today he's reading a piece he wrote for us about the overwhelming excitement as a child attending a stock sale in the South Canterbury township of Pleasant Point. [more]

09/03/2018: Wool mill calls for origin labelling
Inter-Weave is the largest manufacturer of woollen fabric in the Southern Hemisphere. It produces 150,000 metres of fabric a year on looms at its Auckland mill. [more]

09/03/2018: ‘Cute and placid’ Swiss sheep introduced to NZ
Black nosed Valais is a breed of sheep new to New Zealand. Originating in Switzerland in the 1400's, the sheep are undeniably cute -  with black ears, faces, knees and feet and if they're a girl, a black bottom too. [more]

16/03/2018: Full Episode for Friday March 16, 2017
Federated Farmers president Katie Milne, the Sheep Milk New Zealand conference, animal behavioural scientist Dr Lindsay Matthews and the Regional Wrap. [more]

16/03/2018: Milk Baa
Sheep Milk NZ held its 4th annual conference this week in Palmerston North. 150 people attended and Craig Prichard from Massey University says it's a very exciting time for the industry. [more]

16/03/2018: High country sheep in hot water: guilty or not guilty?
Many people believe sheep on steep hill country farms don't affect the water quality of streams – but that's not quite the case, says animal behaviour scientist Dr Lindsay Matthews. [more]

16/03/2018: From cow paddocks to corporate offices
West Coast dairy farmer Katie Milne talks about life on the farm at Rotomanu, educating kids about agriculture, confronting environmental issues and some of the other challenges she's faced so far as the new Federated Farmers president.  [more]

23/03/2018: Full Episode for Friday March 23, 2017
Country Life goes trout fishing with women recovering from breast cancer, talks to a family growing daffodils for a living, ABC rural correspondent Brett Worthington talks about dairy and wool industry woes, Dave Jordan's just harvested his hemp crop. [more]

23/03/2018: Hemp Harvesting
North Island hemp farmer Dave Jordon says in the future there will be thousands of hectares of industrial hemp grown on farms around New Zealand. This year he hopes to get about 10 tons of hemp stalk per hectare and once harvested it will be processed into fibre. [more]

23/03/2018: Our Man from the ABC
This week ABC rural news correspondent Brett Worthington says big changes are in the wind in the Australian dairy industry as foreign owners move on in and there's been skulduggery in the wool industry. [more]

23/03/2018: A family tradition in bloom
The Chamberlain family have cultivated spring flowers at Hadstock Farm in Mid Canterbury since the 1930s. Country Life pays them a visit as the last of the bulbs are dug up before it's time to plant early-flowering daffodils. [more]

23/03/2018: Casting For Recovery
Each year women with breast cancer have the opportunity to get away from it all with Casting for Recovery. Country life joins a group as they enjoy the tranquillity of the country-side and, under the guidance of expert trout fishing 'buddies', flick a fly out into the river . [more]

29/03/2018: Full Episode for Friday March 30, 2018
Dr Paul Dettloff is the consulting vet for the largest organic milk cooperative in the USA with 1700 dairy farms. He is in Geraldine to give a workshop to farmers and vets about transitioning from the high-tech methods of the modern dairy farm toward a more holistic and sustainable practice. He also talks about alternative treatments for cattle infected with the Mycoplasma bovis infection. [more]

29/03/2018: Full Episode for Friday March 30, 2017
Dr Paul Dettloff is the consulting vet for the largest organic milk cooperative in the USA with 1700 dairy farms. He is in Geraldine to give a workshop to farmers and vets about transitioning from the high-tech methods of the modern dairy farm toward a more holistic and sustainable practice. He also talks about alternative treatments for cattle infected with the Mycoplasma bovis infection. [more]

30/03/2018: Full Episode for Friday March 30, 2018
Transition and Animal Health with Paul Dettloff, Outgoing FAR CEO Nick Pyke, Lambs Lively, 175 Years Since Cattle Came to Town and the Regional Wrap. [more]

30/03/2018: 175 Years Since Cattle Came to Town
It's been 175 years since Auckland's first A&P show was held in downtown Auckland. David Scott's a farmer and the chairman of the Royal Easter show and says the event now plays a crucial role introducing city folk to farm animals and to farmers. [more]

30/03/2018: Lambs Lively
High prices are being paid for store lambs and Suz Bremner from AgfriHQ tells us why. [more]

30/03/2018: He's not going FAR
Nick Pyke reflects on two decades at the helm of the Foundation for Arable Research in Christchurch. The outgoing chief executive talks about the evolution of cropping, the challenges he has faced and the future of arable farming in New Zealand. [more]

30/03/2018: 'Organic vet' Dr Paul Dettloff visits NZ
Dr Paul Dettloff was in the country recently to educate farmers and vets about the transition to sustainable practices and homeopathic treatments for cattle infected with Mycoplasma bovis.   [more]

06/04/2018: Full Episode for Friday April 6, 2018
Country Life gets saddle sore cycling from Mt Ruapehu to the Sea .. checking out rural businesses along the way. [more]

06/04/2018: On Your Bike: part one
Susan Murray takes on the Mountain to Sea Cycle Trail – and checks out who is benefiting from extra visitors to the Central North Island. [more]

06/04/2018: Boutique winemaking in Bannockburn
Debra Cruickshank has had a chaotic few weeks. It's harvest time – a month early – and grapes have been arriving at her Central Otago micro-winery in buckets, bins and baby baths. [more]

06/04/2018: On Your Bike: part two
Susan Murray takes on the Mountain to Sea Cycle Trail – and checks out who is benefiting from extra visitors to the Central North Island. [more]

13/04/2018: Full Episode for Friday April 13, 2018
Wheel of Fortune, A Cool Farm, Squeaky Clean? and the Regional Wrap. [more]

13/04/2018: Squeaky Clean?
Dr Clive Dalton, a retired animal scientist, says New Zealand needs to seriously look at many farming and recreational practises that we see as "normal" and question how they'd look to overseas customers where attitudes to animal welfare are changing. [more]

13/04/2018: The Southern Weather Man
The Central Otago settlement of Ophir has the dubious honour of being the coldest place in the country. Sam Leask should know. Every day the sheep farmer ducks out to record the temperature, then sends it off to NIWA. [more]

13/04/2018: Wheel of Fortune
Malcolm Smith and Robyn Curtis-Smith have transformed an abandoned West Coast gold mining valley into fertile farmland for their cattle. They've also built a house and a huge waterwheel that generates electricity for the farm. [more]

20/04/2018: Full Episode for Friday April 20, 2018
Apple Angst, Stephen Dickson and his ferret Crank, The Return of the Rabbits, Future Farmers and the Regional Wrap. [more]

20/04/2018: Apple Angst
Simon Easton has a 60-hectare apple orchard in the Tasman region. He says every year it gets harder to find fruit pickers, but this year takes the cake. [more]

20/04/2018: Kill That Rabbit
Stephen Dickson's frank business name says it all. The Central Otago man employs dogs, ferrets and guns to combat the region's exploding rabbit population. [more]

20/04/2018: Farmers of the future
Hundreds of children around the country are competing in the AgriKids regional finals this month. The competition aims to promote the fun side of farming and help children develop practical skills.  [more]

20/04/2018: The Return of the Rabbits
Rabbit numbers have exploded in Otago in the past year and Shaun Moloney is contracted to help farmers and grape growers get rid of them. [more]

27/04/2018: Full Episode for Friday April 27, 2018
The rigours of shearing, Niki Guy Junker and her meal service and the labour shortage in our apple and Kiwfruit industries. [more]

27/04/2018: Feedback
A listener recalls rabbits running riot in the Lindis Pass area. [more]

27/04/2018: The Rigours of Shearing
The rigours of shearing need to be better understood by health professionals so they can help shearers overcome injuries, says a movement mechanics coach. [more]

27/04/2018: Metal roads and home-made meals
Niki Guy-Junker lives nine kilometres from her letterbox in Central Otago. She grows most of the produce she needs to make ready-to-eat meals in her home kitchen for elderly people in Roxburgh, Clyde and Alexandra. [more]

27/04/2018: Perfect storm hits NZ fruit industry
A massive shortage of seasonal labour that affected this year's apple harvest is now flowing on to kiwifruit. As that crop hits its peak harvesting time, they're short of over a thousand workers for both picking and packing.  [more]

04/05/2018: Full Episode for Friday May 4, 2018
A Farmer and a Filmmaker, High Hope for Hops, An Apple Gang and Grower, Ag-Tech Hackathon and the Regional Wrap. [more]

04/05/2018: Ag-Tech Hackathon
Farmers and software design boffins are getting together this weekend to find solutions to farming problems. [more]

04/05/2018: High hopes for hops
Marlborough Sounds sheep farmer Noel Moleta is turning his hand to growing hops after purchasing a 122-hectare property near Tapawera. So far he has planted 14 hectares and another 15 are going in now. At the last count 2,500 poles had been erected and 44,000 plants put in the ground. Noel says sheep and hops go well together. He sent 700 lambs to the hop farm for the summer to graze under the five metre high canopy. [more]

04/05/2018: The Apple Gang and Apple Grower
Susan Murray checks in with an apple harvesting gang and an apple orchardist who says proposed wage increases will cost him an extra $75,000 dollars a year. [more]

04/05/2018: The farmer and the filmmaker
Converting to organics has been a rewarding challenge for filmmaker and farmer Gaylene Barnes and her brother Andrew. They grow vegetables commercially on the family farm at Highbank in Canterbury. Growing food is part of a long term rehabilitation plan for Andrew after suffering a traumatic brain injury three years ago. Gaylene's latest documentary "Seven Rivers Walking" premiered at last year's Christchurch International Film Festival. [more]

11/05/2018: Full Episode for Friday May 4, 2018
Stray bus visits Murupara in Tuhoe country, Snowberries with Plant and Food, and Southern Girl in Kingston Central Otago, Kiwifruit grower David Jensen. [more]

11/05/2018: Kiwifruit Cash
Gold kiwifruit growers are making very  good money but grower David Jensen says a shortage of labour to harvest fruit won't be solved by simply increasing pay rates. [more]

11/05/2018: Here comes the snowberry
Blueberries, kiwiberries, boysenberries, loganberries... well, there might soon be another one to add to the mix – the snowberry. Trials are underway to see if there's potential for a commercial snowberry crop in New Zealand. [more]

11/05/2018: Swapping Auckland life for the real country
Laura Douglas has set up a tourism venture in Kingston that gives visitors to Queenstown the chance to experience a taste of the country-side. [more]

11/05/2018: Marvellous Murupara
Young backpackers on bus tours are making a tangible difference in the struggling Bay of Plenty town of Murupara. Local tour operator Nadine Toe Toe's motto is 'Change a town through tourism'. [more]

18/05/2018: Full Episode for Friday May 18, 2018
Human V Horse, Ewe Milk Me, Geoffrey Young from Federated Farmers , Horowhenua asparagus grower Geoff Lewis and the Regional Wrap. [more]

18/05/2018: Southern Man
It’s a baptism of fire for new Southland  Fed Farmers Chairman Geoffrey Young with the M. bovis outbreak, a swede seed mix up and debate over Environment Southland's revised water and land plan. [more]

18/05/2018: Spearheading the strawberry charge
Horowhenua asparagus grower Geoff Lewis is setting up tunnel houses to grow strawberries. It's part of his plan to provide year-round work for his seasonal workers. [more]

18/05/2018: Ewe & Me
Julie Brownlee's Neudorf Valley sheep milking operation supplies milk to Thorvald, a company that produces sheep's milk cheese and yoghurt in a factory right next to Julie's milking shed. [more]

18/05/2018: Human v Horse
The Human v Horse event is a marathon over steep hill country with a twist - it's a race between two legs and four. [more]

25/05/2018: Country Life for Fri 25 May 2018
Horse Power, Training Trees, Wine Making the Natural Way, Living with Mycoplasma Bovis and the Regional Wrap. [more]

25/05/2018: Living with Mycoplasma Bovis
Jakob Malmo is a vet working in Gippsland, Australia and says M. Bovis must be very carefully managed but farmers there have learned to live with it. [more]

25/05/2018: Winemaking the natural way
Yoshiaki and Kyoko Sato refuse to add anything to their wine. The former Tokyo bankers now live in Central Otago where they craft wines from only organically grown grapes. [more]

25/05/2018: Training Trees
Plant and Food Research is trialing a radically new way of growing trees. It is training them to grow like candelabra. [more]

25/05/2018: Riding High on Horse Power
Raquel Walker's equestrian performance coach Jeanette Garrett created a programme that enabled the disabled rider from Motueka to compete in last year's Special Olympics. She won a silver and two bronze medals. [more]

01/06/2018: Full Episode for Friday June 1, 2018
Hauraki Cycle Trail, Developing Dorpers, Concern for Calves, Luscious Apricots and the Regional Wrap. [more]

01/06/2018: Concern for Calves
Ken Eade milks 550 cows with his son Bruce at Kelso in West Otago. Like most other dairy farmers he is concerned about the spread of Mycoplasma Bovis and the potential impact it will have on the family business. [more]

01/06/2018: Tasty new NZ apricots are on their way
Disappointing apricots could be a thing of the past thanks to the work of Plant and Food Research scientists in Clyde. They're breeding new apricot cultivars that should be a hit with both consumers and growers. [more]

01/06/2018: McPhee's Dorpers
Canterbury vet Jim McPhee runs a Dorper sheep stud on his small farm near Darfield. The meat-focused Dorper is attracting interest from farmers because the breed sheds their own wool, which eliminates the cost of shearing. [more]

01/06/2018: The Golden Ride
No-one really knew if the Hauraki Rail Trail would be successful, but now the trail's hub town Paeroa has a new motel,  new cafes and cycle rental businesses. [more]

08/06/2018: Full Episode for Friday June 8, 2018
Stream of Consciousness, Milking It: From Cows to Sheep, ABC Rural Correspondent,   A River of Debris and the Regional Wrap. [more]

08/06/2018: A river of debris
Last week's torrential rain dumped one million tonnes of forest debris on Tolaga Bay farms. Even mature trees wouldn't have stayed standing in those conditions, forest experts say. [more]

08/06/2018: ABC Rural Correspondent
Brett Worthington talks about Canadian dairy giant Saputo taking over the last dairy co-op in Australia, fine wool prices and drought. [more]

08/06/2018: Milking it: from cows to sheep
Spring Sheep Milk is setting up two sheep milking pilot farms in Waikato. One is a greenfield development, one a cow farm conversion. [more]

08/06/2018: The ex-university lecturers offering free environmental education
Errol Wood and Kelvin Nicolle believe that the best way for today's teenagers to learn about the environment is to be in the environment. They run environmental outreach programme for school and community groups in Canterbury. [more]

15/06/2018: Full Episode for Friday June 15 2018
Meet exhibitors who've attended all 50 National Ag Fieldays, KPMG releases its 2018 Agribusiness Agenda, Mike Petersen Ravensdown Ag Communicator of the Year.   [more]

15/06/2018: Ravensdown Agricultural Communicator of the Year
Mike Peterson is the Ravensdown Agricultural Communicator of the Year for 2018. Mike is New Zealand's Special Agricultural Trade Envoy, a role he's held for five years. [more]

15/06/2018: 50 years at Fieldays: Part One
Sir William Gallagher won't miss a Fieldays – he's been at all 50 of them. And he's not alone. Country Life meets Sir William and some other exhibitors who come back to the agriculture event year after year. [more]

15/06/2018: KPMG Agribusiness Agenda 2018
KPMG released its ninth Agribusiness Agenda at Mystery Creek this week. In forming the report authors talk to leaders from every primary sector you can think of. [more]

15/06/2018: 50 years at Fieldays: Part Two
Geoff Laurent credits the agricultural event Fieldays with helping him grow his farming and veterinary equipment business into a multi-million dollar enterprise. He's been every year since it began. [more]

22/06/2018: Full Episode for Friday June 22, 2018
No Kidding Around. Tourist Traffic, Underground Army, No Calves Thanks and the Regional Wrap. [more]

22/06/2018: No Calves, Thanks
Federated Farmers in Bay of Plenty has asked schools to exclude calves from their annual Ag days. [more]

22/06/2018: Could dung beetles save our waterways?
Dung beetles are a natural and efficient way to to get nutrients down into the soil, keeps pastures clean and, in turn, help mitigate runoff into streams, says Dr Shaun Fogie of Dung Beetle Innovations. [more]

22/06/2018: High country farming with a live audience
Every one of the estimated 100,000 tourists heading to Mount Aspiring National Park each year travel through Randall Aspinall farm. When tourists spot his stock in the river, he'll sometimes hear about it on the news. [more]

22/06/2018: The Not-Lonely Goatherd
Tapawera dairy goat farmer Tracy Hay has given each of her hundred or so kids a name. The self-confessed 'goatie' has hand-raised Tinkerbell, Treasure, Tambourine and Truffle et al so that they are completely focused on her. [more]

29/06/2018: Full Episode for Friday June 29, 2018
Pastoral Peacekeepers, Tasty Tomatoes, Rain drops have finally fallen on South Africa's Western Cape and the regional Wrap. [more]

29/06/2018: Tomatoes a la Romano: a Nelson family's tradition
The Romano family have been growing tomatoes in Nelson since the 1940s. Bettina Romano's father-in-law Tony taught her the tricks of the trade and she now grows and sells an heirloom variety at the Nelson farmers market. [more]

29/06/2018: Rain drops have finally fallen on South Africa's Western Cape
The Western Cape region has been experiencing a three year drought. It could be five years until water levels return to a healthy level. [more]

29/06/2018: Riverside: a community of pastoral peacekeepers
The Riverside Community near Nelson is the oldest intentional community in New Zealand. Most of its members work on the property and share their earnings and expenses. [more]