University of Maryland Extension

Ag & Natural Resources

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 Garrett County Ag Facts Brochure

Agriculture and natural resources are crucial to Maryland’s economy, environment and way of life of its residents. From the food we eat, to the flowers and plants in our homes, the landscaping of our yards, valuable real estate, beautiful coastal waters and fine recreational hunting all relate to the state’s agricultural land use.

Over two million acres are farmed in Maryland by a variety of crops, livestock and industries.  Commodities such as corn grain, soybeans and wheat feed poultry and livestock. Vegetable and fruit crops are grown in the local season for wholesale, retail and farmers markets. The nursery and greenhouse industry supplies residents, businesses and urban areas with plants, shrubs and trees.

The University of Maryland Extension is a source of research based agriculture technical information and is provided through various fact sheets, workshops, field days, one on one consultations and educational seminars. Major educational programs focus on commercial vegetable, fruit and field crop production; nursery and greenhouse production; nutrient management; integrated pest management; safety training for pesticide license certification; risk management; pasture and livestock management. 

For more information about agriculture in Maryland click here.

Click on any of the agriculture programs listed below to find out more information:

Facts About Garrett County:

Garrett County is a largely rural county located in the mountains of western Maryland.  With elevations approaching 3,000 feet above sea level and mountainous terrain, a majority of the over 600 farms are small in size averaging 141 acres according to the 2007 USDA Ag Census.   The agriculture in Garrett County has recently been based on livestock and dairy production.  Garrett County ranks 3rd in Beef Cattle, 4th in Dairy Cattle and 7th in Sheep among the counties in Maryland.  Grain and forage crops have largely been utilized on farm for feeding livestock and dairy animals.  Lower profit margins in milk production and higher grain commodity crop prices have led to increased production of corn and soybeans for grain.

Garrett County also has a thriving tourism economy with Deep Creek Lake and the only downhill ski resort in Maryland.  The agriculture community is taking advantage of tourism in the county by increasing production and sales of local foods and agri-tourism.  Taking advantage of season extension technology such as high tunnels as well as cool summer weather has allowed for increased local production of fruits and vegetables. 

Natural Resources also play a very important part of the Garrett County economy.   Garrett County leads the state in the harvesting of timber, maple syrup and cut Christmas tree production.  The goal of the Garrett County office of University of Maryland Extension is to support the current agriculture and natural resource activities and to continuing to assist farmers and land-owners with the development of new enterprises.       

For more information on local agriculture, contact your county Extension Office.


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