OEFFA Advanced Season Extension Workshop

The Ohio Ecological Food and Farm Association (OEFFA) and the Cuyahoga Valley Countryside Conservancy are offering a four day, two session workshop, “Raising the Salad Bar: Advanced Techniques and Season Extension for the Established Specialty Crop Grower.”

“This workshop is designed especially for experienced crop producers and will give them the tools needed to improve efficiency, utilize season extension, engage in sophisticated planning, and improve growing practices,” said Renee Hunt, OEFFA’s program director. “We have a number of growers currently doing an excellent job and producing at a high level.  These workshops are to help them take their skills to the next level,” said Beth Knorr of the Countryside Conservancy.

Session 1 (“Advanced Growing Techniques”) will take place on Saturday, November 5 and Sunday, November 6, and feature Josh Volk, a vegetable production expert, lecturer, and regular contributor to Growing for Market. Volk’s Slow Hand Farm in Oregon is home to his CSA, where he implements strategies for consistent yields of specialty crops.

Volk will address season long planning, seed starting and transplanting, weed management, harvest and post-harvest handling, marketing outlets, and food safety. OSU Extension Entomologist Celeste Welty will also discuss pest and disease control.

Session 2 (“Season Extension”) will take place on Monday, November 7 and Tuesday, November 8 and feature author, commercial market gardener, teacher, and lecturer Eliot Coleman. Coleman’s production techniques, including season extension and rotational grazing, have influenced organic and ecological gardeners for more than four decades. He is the author of The New Organic Grower, Four Seasons Harvest, and The Winter Harvest Handbook. Other presenters include Phil and Mindy Bartholomae of Breezy Hill Farm and OSU Vegetable Pathologist Sally Miller.

This session will address advanced techniques for season extension including high tunnels, low tunnels, cold frames, and greenhouses; utilizing season extension structures during the main season; crop selection; planting schedules and succession planting; harvest and post-harvest handling; soil management, and pest and disease control.

Both sessions will be held at Procter Camp and Retreat in London, Ohio (Madison County).

Farmers can attend one or both sessions. Each session is limited to 25 farmers. Due to limited slots and to ensure discussion and information presented remain at an advanced level, interested farmers are required to fill out an application. The application form can be found at http://www.cvcountryside.org/farmers/RaisingtheSaladBar.php.

The cost for Session 1, including the two day workshop, lodging, and all meals is $175-$225. Without lodging and meals, the cost is $45. The cost for Session 2, including the two day workshop, lodging, and all meals is $275-$325. Without lodging and meals, the cost is $145.

For more information or to fill out the registration application, go to http://www.cvcountryside.org/farmers/RaisingtheSaladBar.php. For questions, please contact Countryside Conservancy at (330) 657-2542 or farmersmarket@cvcountryside.org or OEFFA at (614) 421-2022 or michelle@oeffa.org.

This workshop is sponsored by a Specialty Crop Block Grant from the Ohio Department of Agriculture.

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