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Workshops and Training Programs

Please find 2014 Sustainable Agriculture Program training program summaries below. For more information or registration details, please follow links or contact Kelly Gilkerson kgilker@clemson.edu

 

MARCH

March 11, 2014 - Easley, SC A day-long workshop where local pasture pork producer Roddy Pick of Greenbrier Farms will share details of his successful, pasture-based operation with heritage breed pigs. Dr. John Andrae, Clemson Extension Forage Specialist, also a featured speaker, will share his expertise in selection of forages for pasture-based pork production. TOPICS COVERED: Breed selection, rotational grazing and seasonal production, fencing, forage selection, tree species for woodland foraging, parasite management, feed supplements, and marketing strategies. MORE INFO/REGISTER

March 24, 2014 - Abbeville, SC This program is directed toward those who choose to grow and process their own pork at home. Clemson Extension Agents will share science-based information related to handling of live animals, the carcass and the butchered meat so that safe, economical food is created. This will be a full day of demonstrations plus learning by doing. Program will be conducted on the farm to give most practical, real-life experience. Please dress appropriately for this type of work. Consider bringing an apron and wear closed-toe shoes. NOTE: this day long workshop will start with a live animal and conclude with pressure canned pork. We have plenty to send home with those registered: boning knife, info packet, fresh meat ready for the home freezer, Ball Blue Book, jar of canned pork. MORE INFO/REGISTER


APRIL

Use black soldier fly production as a value-added tool for making compost, while also raising a protein source for chickens or other livestock on your farm.  The black soldier fly can complement any farm’s sustainable agriculture practices of organic production, multi-animal rotational grazing, environmental stewardship, and animal welfare.  MORE INFO/REGISTER

 

JUNE

Interested in increasing the quality, shelf-life and safety of your agricultural products? Join Lowcountry Local First and Clemson University Sustainable Agriculture for a hands-on workshop on proper harvest, washing, and packing techniques for a variety of fruit and vegetables (leafy greens, root vegetables, fruits). MORE INFO/REGISTER

Learn about the Farm Scale Permaculture techniques developed at the Clemson University Organic Farm.  Topics include microclimate modification, passive heating and cooling, compost heating, soldier fly digesters, aquaponics, solar/compost heated ponds, hydronic heating systems, mushroom log flood basins, wet/dry rainwater harvesting systems, keyline design and farmscaping. MORE INFO/REGISTER

 

JULY

High tunnels can be used to extend the growing season and enhance growth, yield, and quality of a wide variety of horticultural crops. Join Steve Moore, high tunnel crop production expert, who will share his research and experience with sustainable high tunnel vegetable production.  In addition, Shawn Jadrnicek, manager of the Clemson University Organic Farm, will give an overview of the farm’s successful high tunnel production system and lead a tour of the farm greenhouse and high tunnels. Shawn will also describe methods for optimal greenhouse location to maximize sun access and water drainage. MORE INFO/REGISTER

 

Fossil-fuel prices are rising across the country and farmers are feeling the pinch.  As increasing energy costs cut into farm profits, adoption of renewable on-farm energy systems gains recognition as a tool for farmers to alleviate the additional expense. Please join our expert guest speakers Steve Moore (Elon University), John Bonitz (Southern Alliance for Clean Energy), and Shawn Jadrnicek (Clemson University) for a full day workshop on low-cost, farm energy systems that minimize the need for fossil fuel-based energy. MORE INFO/REGISTER

 

AUGUST

Druing this session, we will discuss the production and use of biofuels and their application on the farm including oilseed crops, used cooking oil for biodiesel, sugar crops for ethanol and evergy crops for gassification.

 

SEPTEMBER

This one-day course will focus on field diagnosis of key diseases and insect pests affecting vegetable crops in South Carolina and the region. Participants will learn about techniques for sampling and identification of key diseases and their symptoms, and for insect pests and their natural enemies. Participants will gain experience with field monitoring of disease and insect pests on vegetables at the Clemson Organic Farm, and with instruction will practice disease and insect identification using stereo microscopes and hand lenses. All participants will receive a hand lens to take home. Lunch will be provided, and there will be ample time for questions and discussion about disease and insect problems and solutions.

 

OCTOBER

The most common method of heating a greenhouse is with the use of fossil fuel- based energy sources such as electricity and propane. But with ever increasing costs, alternative heating methods based on renewable energy are now cost-effective and practical options for small-scale, season extension greenhouse and high tunnel production. Please join greenhouse energy experts David Thornton, Shawn Jadrnicek and Alex Pellett for this full-day workshop to learn about greenhouse energy efficiency strategies and how to reduce your greenhouse energy costs through the use of renewable energy-based heating and cooling strategies. 

 

NOVEMBER

Join expert Andy Pressman with the National Center for Appropriate Technology and Steen Enterprises in learning about the utilization of tools and equipment for intensive crop production for small to mid-sized farms. Pressman will share his extensive knowledge of whole farm planning and how equipment and tools can be utilized to increase production efficiency and increase profits while minimizing the disturbance to soil. Participants will have the opportunity to learn about the types of equipment and tools for soil preparation, planting, and weed management while also receiving demonstrations of equipment including hand tools, walk-behind tractors, four wheeled tractors, and a variety of attachments (cultivators, plastic mulch layers, etc.).

 

DECEMBER

You’re invited to the annual Open Forum on Sustainable Agriculture to discuss critical issues, challenges and needs related to Sustainable Agriculture development in South Carolina. The meeting is open to all South Carolina farmers, educators, policy makers, state and federal government and non-governmental agricultural agency personnel, and other South Carolina citizens with an interest in sustainable agriculture. Input from this public meeting will be evaluated and used to prioritize critical issues and needs and to formulate plans for statewide sustainable agriculture training and education programs in 2015.

Maintained by: Kelly A. Gilkerson    
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