Holistic Management In the News

Canadian Farmers Demonstrate Success at Open Gate Series

Canada Flag

Holistic Management Certified Educators Blain Hjertaas and Ralph Corcoran were recently featured in the Manitoba Co-operator for their involvement in a series of on-farm learning days as a part of HMI sponsored Open Gate series in Canada.  The article discusses Holistic Management practices that improve soil health to increase the quality and diversity of forage, which then translates into increased profits and better quality of life for the farmers.    Held on site at various farms across Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and Alberta, the Canada series of Open Gates started in July and continue through early October.

The article also highlights Neil Dennis of Sunnybrae Farm, a long-time Holistic Management practitioner.  Neil shares some of improvements he’s seen on his land, like the 300-400 increased carrying capacity, or more than 20% sugar content of his forage, which translates directly into weight gain on his cattle.

You can read the article here:    (link to full article)


There’s Magic in the Soil


In support of the UNs pronouncement of 2015 as the International Year of Soils, we  recommend you take a few minutes to read “Soil Health Movement Gains Converts, Holds Key to Rancher’s Survival” by Mychel Matthews of  MagicValley.com.  The article features a number of producers that have learned the importance of soil health and sustainable principles as part of their management plan. One of the featured producers is Holistic Management producer, Gabe Brown.  Here’s an excerpt…

“Proponents of sustainable farming warn against pulverizing the soil year after year, a practice they say destroys microbial life and dries out the soil before planting.

They also warn that pouring inorganic chemicals to the field in hopes of increasing yields and staving off pests and plant diseases creates an imbalance in the soil and in turn an expensive dependence on more chemicals.”…

Read the entire article on the MagicValley.com site 

Find more information about how to create and maintain healthy soil on the HMI Healthy Soils page.

Canadian Rancher Almost Doubles Carrying Capacity

David Pogson, Manitoba, Canada rancher and holistic manager, was recently interviewed by the Manitoba Farm Journal, and featured in an article on Pembina Valley Online.

Pogson talks about how using Holistic Management practices to plan livestock moves on his ranch over the past 8 years has improved his soil and allowed him to almost double his carrying capacity.   He also shares how he’s used cover crops to both feed cattle and improve the soil.

Pogson credits Holistic Management with the improvements to his pastures.

….it’s really unbelievable… all we’ve done is moved our animals with this planned grazing….we’ve probably upped our carrying capacity  about 95%…

You can read the full article and hear the entire radio interview here:

Manitoba Farm Journal interview

Pembina Valley Online article

Pogson Ranch was one of the planned sites for Holistic Management International’s Open Gates, our on-the-land, interactive learning days to encourage collaboration and networking.  HMI’s full slate of 2015 field days can be found at this webpage, including 3 more scheduled in Canada this year:

HMI’s on-the-land learning days



Home on the desert suits these cattle fine

Holistic Management in desert conditions

Holistic Management Certified Educator and Director of Programs for HMI, Ann Adams, is quoted in this article written by Lauren Villegran and published in the Albuquerque Journal.  It’s a fascinating look at criollo cattle — believed to be particularly well suited for desert grazing. Holistic Management practitioner Dennis Moroney is also mentioned…

Dennis Moroney of the 47 Ranch in southeast Arizona buys criollo cattle from the Jornada Experimental Range for slaughter about twice a year. He also raises them. He is transitioning his ranch from traditional cattle to exclusively criollo and is about halfway there with a herd of about 200, he said.

“The economics are working for us,” he said. “We’re a profitable ranch with no debt. That is very unusual in our business.”

You can read the entire article on the ABQ Journal website >>>

Cattle Management Can Improve Habitat…and Prevent Global Warming


Dixon-Deer.smallIt’s great to see more and more people acknowledging how practicing Holistic Management can improve wildlife habit. Our friends from the Kerr Wildlife Management Area, The Dixon Water Foundation – Mimms Ranch unit and Dr. Richard Teague are featured in an article by Robert McKee. Here’s an excerpt…

In arid West Texas in the northern-most parts of the Chihuahuan Desert, there’s an 11,000-acre ranch that uses cattle to groom and improve the desert grasslands just as the native bison did for centuries. At the Mimms Ranch, CEO Robert Potts will tell you how cattle are a tool to improve the rangelands. Potts shares, “…cattle are an important part of healthy range ecology. When managed as a grazing system, you can create or manipulate habitat to benefit birds, plant health, and soil fertility. What we’re seeing is more grass and more cover. For birds, it’s important for feeding, nesting, and for just staying out of the really heavy winter winds that whip across the desert plains out here.” The Mimms Ranch rotates cattle daily and has a full-time manager.

You can read the entire article on the Land Link website >>

Holistic Management Practitioners Win Award


Congratulations to Holistic Management practitioners Scott and Jean Johnson of the Flying Diamond Ranch in Colorado. They have been awarded the  2015 Colorado Leopold Conservation Award. Here’s an excerpt from an article published in the High Plains/ Midwest AG Journal…

Located near Kit Carson, Flying Diamond Ranch is a fifth generation, 25,000-acre cattle ranch. For over 100 years, the Johnsons’ management philosophy has reflected a personal conviction of individual responsibility for the health of the land. Guided by their principles of holistic management, they implemented a rotational grazing system that is supported by pipelines and fencing, which allows them to control the environmental impact of their herd.

To lower production costs, the Johnsons pushed their calving season to May when natural forage supplies can better meet the nutritional needs of their herd.

Read the entire article on the High Plains website >>>

Edible Ecosystems at Parducci Wine Estates



Jess Arnsteen took some Holistic Management courses when he was at Colorado College back in 2010. After developing his holistic goal, he began to make decisions toward creating the life he wanted. After a number of twists and turns, that focus on what he wanted has resulted in his current role as manager of edible ecosystems for Parducci Wine Estates where he is growing much of the food for the workers and closing resource loops for Parducci.

To read the full article at Modern Farmer, an award-winning quarterly print magazine and online news journal, click here.

Award Winning Practitioners

Another Winner!

Tom Wahl and Kathy Dice of the Red Fern Farm in Wapello, Iowa are the  recipients of the 2015 Sustainable Agriculture Achievement Award, granted annually by Practical Farmers of Iowa.  It’s great see Holistic Management practitioners recognized for the their stewardship of the land.   Here’s an excerpt from an article published in Agrinews.com

Many years later Wahl and Dice were attending a Practical Farmers’ Shared Visions event where a call for integrated cropping systems using perennial plants really resonated with them. That was an “Aha! moment” for them, and Wahl realized chestnuts and other trees could be the perennial crops. Farm conversion to agroforestry began shortly thereafter.

Wahl said PFI and Holistic Management have been important as they developed their farm and thoughts about sustainability.

Read the entire article >>>

Profit versus production in the cattle business

Holistic Management Certified Educator, Don Campbell

Holistic Management Certified Educator, Don Campbell

Holistic Management Certified Educator, Don Campbell just wrote an article in the Canadian Cattlemen, It includes some good charts. Here’s an excerpt…


“There is a tendency in the cow-calf business to put production before profit. I don’t understand this tendency and certainly don’t agree with it. Profit is essential if you want to stay in business. It is important to analyze our individual businesses and structure them for profit. Some of the areas we might analyze are: cow size, time of calving and cow-calf versus cow-long yearling. A business structured for profit in these three areas is likely to produce a profit in the short term and sustainability in the long term.”

Read the Entire Story >>>

Farmer, rancher business sessions set for Montrose next month

carrizo-cows-SMALLThe Montrose Daily News has taken note of our upcoming Holistic Management Whole Farm/Ranch Business Planning course in Montrose Colorado.  Read the article.

If you are interested in enrolling in the course. We are offering scholarships and we still have a few slots open. Get More Information