ANNAPOLIS, Md. – Maryland Public Television’s (MPT) popular original series Maryland Farm & Harvest, now in its eighth season, will feature farms and locations in Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Harford, and Washington counties as part of a corn-themed episode airing on Tuesday, December 8 at 7 p.m.
Maryland Farm & Harvest takes viewers on a journey across the state, telling stories about the farms, people, and technology required to sustain and grow Maryland agriculture – the state’s number one commercial industry.
With introductions filmed at First Fruits Farm in Freeland, Maryland (Baltimore County), Maryland Farm & Harvest’s newest episode features the following segments:
Fighting Back Against Bugs (Anne Arundel County). This corn-themed episode begins with a close-up look at a big pest. The corn earworm can cause massive damage by devouring crops. Thankfully, farmers have a weapon to fight back. University of Maryland Entomologist Galen Dively explains how Bt corn is genetically engineered to produce a suite of toxins that kill earworms, but are harmless to humans and livestock. From test plots at the Beltsville Agricultural Research Center, viewers learn how some pests are evolving resistance to Bt corn and learn how scientists are working to stay one step ahead of these bugs.
Corn Silage (Washington County). A dairy cow needs a lot of energy to produce large amounts of milk, on average 80 pounds of milk per day, and corn is often part of their balanced diet. Maryland Farm & Harvest visits J.A. Horst and Sons in Clear Spring, west of Hagerstown, where farmer Brent Horst is harvesting corn silage. While the corn is still green, the plants are chopped up, packed into a silo, and fermented. University of Maryland Extension Agent Jeff Semler explains how this preserves the corn and provides cows with healthy, nutritious feed all year long.
The Local Buy: Sweet Corn (Harford County). Did you know there’s a big difference between the corn you eat on the cob and the corn that’s made into cornmeal? The Local Buy segment host Al Spoler stops by Hopkins Produce in Havre de Grace where he learns the difference between sweet corn, which is eaten fresh, frozen, or canned, and field corn, which is dried out and used for cornmeal and livestock feed. Dave Hopkins even shows Al how to pick sweet corn by hand. Al’s wife, Michele, then shares her recipes for fresh corn soup and corn pudding. Recipes are available at mpt.org/farm.
Farms from the Air: Corn Crops. In this new segment, the series takes a bird’s-eye-view trip across Maryland to see cornfields from above. Watch how corn goes from planting to harvest, with stops at Seneca Ayr Farms in Laytonsville (Montgomery County), 2 Cool Farms in Greensboro (Caroline County), Piccadilly Farm in Worton (Kent County), Winterbrook Farms in Thurmont (Frederick County), and Springfield Farm in Queenstown (Queen Anne’s County).
Nearly 10 million viewers have tuned in to Maryland Farm & Harvest since its 2013 debut. The series has taken MPT viewers to more than 360 farms, fisheries, and other agriculture-related locations during its first seven seasons, covering every Maryland county, as well as Baltimore City and Washington, D.C.
New episodes of Maryland Farm & Harvest air on Tuesdays at 7 p.m. on MPT-HD and are live-streamed on MPT’s website. The newest episode will be re-broadcasted on MPT-HD Thursdays at 11 p.m. and Sundays at 6 a.m. and on MPT2/Create® on Fridays at 7:30 p.m.
The Maryland Department of Agriculture is MPT’s co-production partner for Maryland Farm & Harvest. Major funding is provided by the Maryland Grain Producers Utilization Board.
Additional funding is provided by Maryland’s Best, Maryland Agricultural Resource-Based Industry Development Corporation (MARBIDCO), MidAtlantic Farm Credit, Rural Maryland Council, Maryland Agricultural Education and Rural Development Assistance Fund (MAERDAF), Maryland Soybean Board, Maryland Association of Soil Conservation Districts, Wegmans Food Markets, Maryland Nursery, Landscape & Greenhouse Association, Seafood Marketing Advisory Commission, Maryland Farm Bureau, and The Keith Campbell Foundation for the Environment.
Other support comes from the Mar-Del Watermelon Association, Eddie Mercer Agri-Services, Inc., and the Maryland Agricultural Education Foundation (MAEF).
–Megan Guilfoyle, Maryland Department of Agriculture