The month of March is considered part of the dry season in Costa Rica.  We’ve found it interesting that it still rains many days during this “dry” season. A farmer that we visited in Cartago yesterday told us that it rains 13 months out of the year in Costa Rica.  (I suppose that the bright spot is that it rains a lesser amount when it rains in the dry season as compared to the rainy season!)

The farmer in Cartago grows cool season vegetables (ie. broccoli and lettuce).  The weather conditions there are much different in this high altitude area in comparison to Turrialba.  So, the cool season veggies are brought to the Turrialba market and bananas and other crops not grown in Cartago are brought up for their market.  The partnership works between the growers.

Let’s talk about other partnerships which are growing because of our work here.  The last two days have been fascinating because we continue to learn more about agricultural systems that are completly different from farms in the corn belt.  Both the farmer from Cartago and an APOT grower we visited today are focused on effectively utilizing resources available to them.  They develop fungicides, herbicides and fertilizers from organic sources as well as follow inter-cropping practices.  We’ve really been thinking and talking a lot about our resources in Indiana, as a result.

In today’s workshop Scott and J.W. both shared information from a survey and their own experiences to help out the APOT cooperative members to improve their farmer’s market.  You really could see the wheels turning as the growers listened and chatted with the guys today…..It’s great to see a partnership at work!