mattbio

Blog: Matt Reese

I grew up on a small farm in northwest Ohio and spent most of my youth writing, doodling, taking pictures, reading and exploring the surrounding farmland. With a family full of teachers, I also grew up around a culture supportive of education. I was active in athletics in high school before graduating from Ohio State University where I studied agricultural communications. This led to my career in agricultural journalism.

I continue to work on the family Christmas tree farm in Hancock County. I married my wonderful wife, Kristin, in 2002. We live on a small farm in Fairfield County with sheep, rabbits and chickens. We have a daughter Campbell Miriam who was born in the fall of 2007 and a son Parker Matthew born in August of 2009. We are active in our local church and with numerous other organizations. I help with the agricultural program at Ohio Christian University in Circleville as well.

I have worked for Ohio’s Country Journal since 1999. I also write a column for numerous newspapers around Ohio, Fresh Country Air and do freelance writing and photography work. I have written and self-published six books to date. To find my books, visit lulu.com and search for “Matt Reese.”

Here a newly planted white pine has plenty of opportunity for sunlight surrounded by the aggressive Dutch white clover cover crop.

Clover cover crop helping with weed control (so far)

After the trees are planted in the spring, a major source of summer labor on my family’s Christmas tree farm is weed control. Weeds can rob young trees of exposure to sunlight, moisture and nutrients. The first year of planting trees on the farm (many years ago) we did not emphasize weed control and lost [...]

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dry dirt

Will La Niña send markets soaring?

The 2016 soybean and corn crops in the U.S. could face a serious shortfall if they get the full brunt of a La Niña. This winter I had the great pleasure of talking with Elwynn Taylor from the Iowa State University. He is watching what the strong El Niño does next. He had this to [...]

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PHOTO: The Reese garden mud hole barometer indicated that there was ample soil moisture following an exceptionally poor stretch of April weather.

The Reese garden mud hole barometer: A value analysis

When I was growing up, a neighbor had one of those Mule Barometers to monitor the weather. It said something like: “If tail is dry — Fair; If tail is wet — Rain; If tail is swinging — Windy; If tail is wet and swinging — Stormy; If tail is frozen — Cold.” In what [...]

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Water

Is the EPA funding an anti-ag PR campaign?

Unfortunately it seems only coincidental that the story about the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency funding an anti agriculture PR campaign appeared on April Fools’ Day. If the insistence on WOTUS, the unending regulatory battles and general disdain between agriculture and the agency were not clues enough to see the true agenda of the EPA, some [...]

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tulip

Spring 2016

I killed a wasp in very early March and my daughter got her first mosquito bite the following week. By all accounts it appears that the planting season will be early in Ohio this year. The four-inch inch soil temperatures will likely be running above normal this spring and forecasters thought they would reach above [...]

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corn seed

Battle of the Smiths

It was a battle of the Smiths for the highest Ohio yield in the National Corn Growers Association 2015 Corn Yield Contest. Fresh off his trip to Commodity Classic where he was recognized for his corn yield success, Adam Smith had several tales of what turned out to be a pretty great 2015 for him [...]

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Pete Conkle sections off new pasture for his cattle.

Thanks to those who make farming look simple, even when its not

A few years ago my uncle got a new farm truck. He searched long and hard for a new model with as few electronic gadgets and gizmos as possible. No power seats, windows or locks, or AC. The truck has standard transmission and certainly no heated seats or heated steering wheels. He even has to [...]

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feral cats3

Barn cats and drugs are hard to keep out, especially after you let them in

On the colder days during the winter months, we have a group of barn cats that crowd up near the front door of our house, hoping to sneak in to enjoy the warmer temperatures at the next opportunity. In the barn they have proven repeatedly to be valuable assets. In the house and under foot, [...]

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2015 winter storm

Manage the weather risk to avoid uncertainty: What to watch for in 2016

I went into this winter with the most firewood ever. I was ready to take on winter’s worst after battling multiple severe winters with a less than adequate firewood arsenal in the past. But, due to what has been a fairly mild season, it looks that I will have a head start on next year. [...]

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ram sheep horned dorset

Sunday morning mutton bustin’ makes for unique “elevator speech”

We have a new pastor at church and he was walking through the congregation prior to the service last Sunday morning and he stopped to say, “Hello.” He looked down at my six-year-old son and said, “Pleased to meet you, what is your name?” Rather than sharing his name, my son said, “I went mutton [...]

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