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Frederick County Features On MPT Series

January 30th, 2024 by WCBC Radio

Maryland Public Television’s (MPT) original series Maryland Farm & Harvest, now in its 11th season,  will feature farms and locations in Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Frederick, Harford, and Washington counties during an episode premiering on Tuesday, February 6. A preview of the episode will be available on the series’ webpage at

Maryland Farm & Harvest airs on Tuesdays at 7 p.m. on MPT-HD and online at Episodes are also available to view on the free PBS App and MPT’s online video player following their broadcast premiere. Encore broadcasts air on MPT-HD on Thursdays at 11 p.m. and on Sundays at 6 a.m. Episodes also air on MPT2/Create® on Fridays at 7:30 p.m.

The popular weekly series takes viewers on a journey across the Free State, telling engaging and enlightening stories about the farms, people, and technology required to sustain and grow agriculture in Maryland, the state’s number one commercial industry. 

Joanne Clendining, who has earned two regional Emmy® awards for her work on Maryland Farm & Harvest, serves as series host. She is joined during the season by Al Spoler, host of “The Local Buy” segments, and by a rotation of local chefs who each take a turn hosting a new segment called “Farm to Skillet,” during which viewers are led through the process of finding, preparing, and presenting the locally produced ingredients that make up some of the chefs’ favorite dishes. 

The February 6 episode features a special segment profiling artist John Franklin Sauers. The Darlingtonresident has had his art exhibited in galleries throughout the country, won more than 20 awards, and sold nearly 300 of his works for as much as $2,000. In 2022, a Harford County Council proclamation named John a “Harford Living Treasure.” At 90 years old, he continues to create his iconic plein-air paintings, many of which are inspired by the rural landscapes and barnyards found throughout Harford County. 

Additional segments premiering during the February 6 episode include:

  • Monocacy Hops (Baltimore, Frederick, and Washington counties). The Monocacy hop is one of a kind, and it grows so well in Maryland’s climate that it’s making both farmers and brewmasters very hoppy! Viewers learn about the discovery of this special hop in Western Maryland and meet local brewmasters – such as Tom Barse of Milkhouse Brewery in Mt. Airyand Christopher Leonard of Heavy Seas Brewery in Halethorpe – who are using it to brew new, flavorful, and uniquely local beers. 
  • Ernst Farm (Washington County). To overcome the fluctuations in bulk grain prices, Steve Ernst and his son Josh of Ernst Grain & Livestock in Clear Spring created a special grain feed that has local customers chomping at the bit. The Ernst family grows about 500 acres of grains, all of which are now used to produce non-GMO animal feed that is sold throughout the region. Thanks in part to the entrepreneurial pivot from bulk grain to specialty feed, Josh is able to sustain his family as a full-time farmer. 
  • Farm to Skillet: Chef Lettie Lavallee, Anne Arundel County Farmers Market. Personal chef Lettie Lavallee, owner of the Arnold-based dinner service Leave Dinner to Lettie, leads viewers through the Anne Arundel County Farmers’ Market in Annapolis, where she finds the locally produced ingredients she needs to cook a summer farro salad with charred vegetables, feta cheese, fresh greens, and picked green tomatoes. The recipe was Lettie’s grandmother’s, and the dish has become one of her favorite summertime go-to meals. Lettie’s recipe will be available at to download and try at home. 

More than 16 million viewers have watched Maryland Farm & Harvest on MPT since its debut in 2013. The series has traveled to more than 450 farms, fisheries, and other agriculture-related locations during its first 10 seasons, covering every Maryland county, as well as Baltimore City and Washington, D.C.