Saturday Workshops

SATURDAY:  Session I  •  Roundtables  •  Session II  •  Session III 

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SCHEDULE: SATURDAY, February 16, 2019 

8:00 am

Registration & Exhibitors' Fair open;
refreshments available

9:00-10:30 am

Keynote: Leah Penniman

10:45 am-12:00  Workshop Session I

12:00–2:00 pm

Lunch, Exhibitors' Fair, Roundtables (1:00–2:00), & other activities

2:15–3:30 pm 

Workshop Session II

3:45–5:00 pm

Workshop Session III

4:30–6:00 pm

Saturday Social 

6:00–8:00 pm

Film Screening & Panel Discussion: Modified

7:00–10:00 pm

Young Farmer & Slow Food Meet-Up at Hotel VT


Saturday - Session I: 10:45-12:00pm

Action Planning to Uproot Racism in the Food System

Leah Penniman, Soul Fire Farm

Through programs such as the Black-Latinx Farmers Immersion, a sliding-scale farmshare CSA, and Youth Food Justice leadership training, Soul Fire Farm is part of a global network of farmers working to increase farmland stewardship by people of color, restore Afro-indigenous farming practices, and end food apartheid. With the new book Farming While Black, Soul Fire Farm extends that work by offering the first comprehensive manual for African-heritage people ready to reclaim our rightful place of dignified agency in the food system. Join us to learn how you too can be part of the movement for food sovereignty and help to build a food system based on justice, dignity, and abundance for all members of our community.

Cool the Planet: Food, Water, Soil, Climate, Hope! Part 1.

Presenters: Cat Buxton & Henry Swayze, Vermont Healthy Soils Coalition

The ripples of our daily choices directly impact climate change. Cat Buxton and Henry Swayze offer a whole systems approach with accessible, positive solutions that will help to cool the planet while restoring water, soil and public health. In part 1, Henry covers water and soil dynamics and the science of the natural systems that allow for planetary cooling. In part 2, Cat digs in to soil health principles, watershed function, and how the average person can effect change in the backyard and in the marketplace. This workshop is suitable for beginning and advanced gardeners, farmers, and land managers.

Creative Options for Farm Access, Transfer and Conservation

Presenters: Benneth Phelps, Dirt Capital; Jon Ramsay, Vermont Land Trust; Mike Ghia, Land for Good; Sally Dodge, Iroquois Valley Farmland Reit

Farmers seeking to secure, expand or sell their land or business use a variety of tools to achieve secure and affordable land tenure or land transfer. This can include purchase, lease and conservation options. The panelists will describe capital sources and project execution in farm conservation, access, expansion and transfer projects. There will be ample time for Q&A.

Entry Level Tomato Grafting: Increasing Profitability and Plant Health

Presenter: Chance McNiff, Love Apples Farm

This workshop is intended for commercial growers interested in grafting tomatoes for themselves. Growers who buy in grafted plants essentially roll the dice; more and more cases of infected grafted seedlings keep sprouting up and even experienced growers fall prey. In-house-grafting not only increases profitability, but insures the health and success of your tunnel tomatoes. Having logged numerous years of ‘tomatoeing’, Chance McNiff will cover the grafting process from seedling to trellised plant, giving you the confidence to do it yourself.

Epigenetics, Our Gut Biome, Phytochemicals and More: A Closer Look at Whole Foods 

Presenter: Allison Van Akkeren, Sterling College

Take a deep dive into Allison's 30 plus years of professional experience regarding whole foods eating. Allison Van Akkeren, with a Master of Science in Clinical Nutrition, will discuss the nuances of whole foods containing prebiotics and probiotics and their support of healthy bacteria in the digestive tract and relationships to our health. The discussion will begin by building an overall philosophy towards eating. We will also examine phytochemicals, summarizing some of the health-protective benefits they provide and how they are active in the whole food form in a balanced diet and well as delve into the study of epigenetics and how food can alter how genes are expressed.

Herbal Medicine Making Basics

Presenter: Betzy Bancroft, Vermont Center for Integrative Herbalism

Once you have grown or gathered some herbs, you’ll want to know how to prepare them for medicine! Primarily through demonstration, this class will cover the basic techniques for making teas, infused vinegars and syrups. We’ll prepare an infusion and a decoction—the two different ways of making herbal tea, fire cider—a spice-infused vinegar, and elderberry syrup. Making these remedies at home is easy, fun and economical, and will help keep you and your loved ones healthy all winter long.

Homesteading with Small Ruminants

Presenter: Annie Basehore Starbard, Farmer, Author & Consultant

Are you prepared for the next step of adding small ruminants to your homestead? This workshop will cover many of the small ruminant challenges homesteaders face as they move beyond chickens and pigs. Join in the group discussion to know what concerns others have and learn what you need to get started. Dairy, meat, fiber, companion goats and sheep benefit a homestead in many ways. Husbandry knowledge means the difference between trouble and success. Learn how to feed, birth and care for a few small ruminants. Understand the costs and benefits and see how they fit into your already established barn of critters.

Hunting Wild Mushrooms in the Northeast 

Presenters: Ari Rockland-Miller & Jenna Antonino DiMare, The Mushroom Forager LLC

Join in for a colorful presentation introducing the region's gourmet and medicinal wild mushrooms. Participants will receive a sample ForageCast handout for the region, steering us towards a safe, targeted and fruitful foray. We will also discuss guidelines for ethical wildcrafting, safety and strategy.

Innovations on Vegetable and Berry Farms in 2018 

Presenter: Vern Grubinger, UVM Extension

Vern will share slides taken during his visits to farms in 2018. Using examples from farms across the region, participants will learn best practices and innovations for dealing with a variety of issues, from soil health, to pack sheds, to pest management. There will be plenty of time for growers in the audience to share their ideas, too.

Irrigation 101 for the Commercial Scale 

Presenters: Trevor Hardy & Zoe Stapp, Brookdale Farm Supplies

Learn the basics of drip irrigation. This workshop will cover terminology, how to set up an irrigation system, supplies you need and how to operate it. There will be a review of fertilizing through drip lines with fish and other OMRI approved fertilizers, new overhead irrigation misters, automation and measuring soil moisture. Everything you need to know about how to apply water to make your crops grow.

Maple Economics and Business Viability

Presenter: Mark Cannella, UVM Extension

Are you a maple producer or thinking about starting up a maple business? This session will provide a summary of current maple financial research in Vermont from 2013-2017. The discussion will include an overview of how different types of businesses are performing under the recent decline of bulk maple prices and growth of new maple products. Individual business factors will be discussed in the context of broader market and policy trends. Participants will receive information on current maple business programs and access to educational resources. This workshop is intended for commercial scale producers. 

Nut Trees for Northern Vermont

Presenters: Nicko Rubin, East Hill Tree Farm; Buzz Ferver, Perfect Circle Farm

Nut trees provide essential food for a wide range of birds and mammals and are an incredibly resilient source of high quality fat and protein. The natural range for many nut trees follow settlement of the Indigenous people of the Northeast. It is in our nature to spread nut trees. Learn the details of growing a wide range of nut trees, including, chestnut, hazelnut, black walnut, oak, hickory, nut pine and more. This workshop will cover propagation and planting to harvesting and there will be time for a question and answer session.

The Fat Kitchen: How to Render, Cure & Cook with Lard, Tallow & Poultry Fats

Presenter: Andrea Chesman, Author

Cooking and baking with animal fats—lard, tallow (from beef or goats), chicken fat, duck fat, and goose fat—are intrinsic parts of nose-to-tail eating. These fats yield superior texture in baked goods, add richness to savory dishes, and are healthier to eat than many have been taught. In this workshop, we will examine the healthfulness of animal fats versus vegetable seed oils, learn how to render or cure these fats, and consider how to adapt recipes to utilize them.

The Yin and Yang of Climate Crisis

Presenter: Brendan Kelly, Jade Mountain Wellness

How do we find balance in the midst of the harsh reality that is the climate crisis? Informed by Brendan’s experience as a practitioner of Chinese medicine, we will discuss how the current life-threatening severity of climate change speaks to the level of imbalance that exists in the people and institutions responsible for the crisis. Through the lens of Chinese medicine, we see that the severity of climate destabilization speaks to deeper philosophical and spiritual issues and provides an opportunity to address our own personal and collective imbalances. In this workshop we will talk about hopeful, deep-reaching personal and societal remedies to treat the underlying causes of climate change.

What Happens When You Compost In Community? Managing Food Waste and Garden Debris for Community Benefit 

Presenters: Libby Weiland, Vermont Community Garden Network; Ruby Perry, Phil Carter, Chris Adams & Sheryl Rapée-Adams, community gardeners

This panel discussion will explore small-scale community food scrap composting in action, featuring compost stewards from three different community gardens in Vermont that accept food scraps as a part of a communally managed compost system. In light of Vermont’s Act 148, the law that bans the disposal of food scraps and yard debris from landfills, we will look at how Vermonters are managing these materials for community benefit. Panelists will address creative solutions, common challenges, key components to their operation, and answer your questions for starting up a successful food scrap composting system in your community.

 

SATURDAY - ROUNDTABLES: 1:00-2:00PM

Join NOFA-VT staff, presenters and fellow farmers and gardeners for an open-forum discussion on a topic important to you.

Organizing for a Just Food Farm—Building Benefits for Farmers & Farmworkers

Louis Battalen, NOFA Mass Domestic Fair Trade Commission; Migrant Justice

The marketplace is increasingly demanding ethically and environmentally produced food, wanting to support farms and businesses that price fairly, pay living wages, and treat their workers with respect. How will these and other food justice and fairness-related issues impact farmers and farmworkers on our farms? How does involvement in grassroots organizations like NOFA, Migrant Justice and the Agricultural Justice Project contribute to addressing and supporting these issues? How do we value labor fairly? How do we honor the work of the invisible workers? How do we talk about power dynamics in food issues on farms? Ethical farmers face economic struggles to live by their values. Young farmers may not be able to own or even manage their farms. Migrant farm workers withstand harsh realities, and still have the courage to organize for change. Let's hear these stories! What kind of mutuality of engagement between farmers and farm workers—including apprentices, interns, migrant workers and beginning farmers—do we need to live up to our claims of social justice, building the bridges towards a robust food system that allows everyone to live a valued and dignified life? Please join us for a lively discussion and bring your stories and proposals.

Using Film for Storytelling: The Mad River Taste Video Series

Robin Morris & Bill Cavanaugh, Mad River Food Hub; Carol Degener, Brand Inflection; Elizabeth Rossano, Elizabeth Rossano Films; Erika Lynch, Babette's Kitchen

This is a panel discussion from the creators of the Mad River Taste video series. Bill Cavanaugh, of Mad River Food Hub, will moderate the discussion along with a sampling of the farmers and small business owners who participated in these videos. They will discuss the business need for the videos, the approach to creating them and what lessons were learned along the journey. The business owners will also discuss the impact these videos have had on their business to date. We can all benefit from the insights of this team to shape our own brand story in order to create a long term connection with our customers.

Vermont Congressional Meet & Greet: Share Your Farming Story

Maddie Kempner, NOFA-VT, with congressional staffers

Members of Vermont's Congressional Delegation have been invited to join us for lunch on Saturday to make brief remarks. Delegates and their staffers have been invited to stay for a meet-and-greet with time for conference attendees to share their stories and discuss their perspectives on food and farm policy in Vermont.Come prepared to discuss the ways that Vermont’s food and farm policy has helped you as a farmer and ideas for new policy that could be of service to you.

 

Saturday - Session II: 2:15-3:30pm

Agricultural Solutions for Social Regeneration

Presenter: Jon Turner, Wild Roots Farm Vermont

Many farms have the goal of inspiring and engaging their greater community, but it can be hard to find the time amongst a busy farm schedule. This workshop will overview regional and national projects that focus on community engagement to inform, inspire and empower through food systems and ecological design. We will also discuss the planning process and ongoing programs at Wild Roots Farm in Bristol, that are intended to support operational resilience, crop yield diversity, and social regeneration through service learning projects.

Backyard Nursery

Presenters: Nicko Rubin, East Hill Tree Farm; Buzz Ferver, Perfect Circle Farm

Got too much of a good thing and want to spread it around? This workshop will cover the basics of woody plant handling focusing on fruit and nut plants. We will discuss when and how to best move plants, managing plants in pots, and basic propagation techniques, layering, divisions, cuttings, seed, and grafting. Discussion will cover a wide range of plants from raspberries to hazelnuts. Let’s make more plants!

Broth for Life: How This Easy-to-Make, Delicious Food Can Support Your Health

Presenters: Alayna Marchessault & Jordan Spencer, Labor of Love

Join Labor of Love’s nutritionist/doula duo to taste test and learn how to make and use broth in your own kitchen. This will not be the broth of Pacific Foods™, Swanson, or Campbell’s Soup, but a broth rich in gelatin, fat, and vital minerals that will support your immune system and overall health. This highly nourishing food has nurtured various cultures across the globe for thousands of years, so everyone will have something to learn. Come ready to taste three homemade broths!

Collaborative Marketing: Success Stories that Break the Mold

Presenters: Greg Georgaklis, Farmers To You; Cheryl DeVos, Kimball Brook Organic Dairy; Bob Lesnikoski, Vermont Cranberry Company

As our retail food markets change rapidly, small and midsize farmers and food producers are discovering the benefits of strategic partnerships and collaboration. Join in this lively discussion featuring a number of highly innovative and creative farmers, producers and organizations that have overcome the increasingly high barriers to getting their product to market and achieving sustainable growth.

Cool the Planet: Food, Water, Soil, Climate, Hope! Part 2

Presenters: Cat Buxton & Henry Swayze, Vermont Healthy Soils Coalition

The ripples of our daily choices directly impact climate change. Cat Buxton and Henry Swayze offer a whole systems approach with accessible, positive solutions that will help to cool the planet while restoring water, soil and public health. In part 1, Henry covers water and soil dynamics and the science of the natural systems that allow for planetary cooling. In part 2, Cat digs in to the soil health principles, watershed function, and how the average person can effect change in the backyard and in the marketplace. This workshop is suitable for beginning and advanced gardeners, farmers and land managers.

Farming Smarter, Not Harder: Planning for Profit

Presenter: Richard Wiswall, Cate Farm

Farming offers fundamental satisfaction from producing food, working outdoors, being one’s own boss, and working intimately with nature. But unfortunately, many farmers avoid learning about the business end of farming; because of this, farmers often work harder than they need to, or quit farming altogether because of frustrating- and often avoidable- losses. This workshop will focus on the planning and analysis tools needed to run a profitable farm, in an easy, step-by-step format. Tips for beginner farmers will finish the session.

Land Succession: Passing the Agricultural Torch

Presenters: Jon Ramsay, Vermont Land Trust; Marjorie Susman, Marian Pollack, Kate Turcotte, Orb Weaver Farm and Creamery; Eugenie Doyle, Sam Burr, Silas Doyle-Burr, Last Resort Farm

Farmers age 65 and older own or manage nearly 30% of farms in Vermont. Farmland access is continuously sited as one of the biggest hurdles for beginning farmers, yet starting a farm from scratch is a huge undertaking that involves skills and capital. As many pioneer organic farmers in the state begin to transition and think about next steps, young farmers are seeking land and businesses. This workshop will showcase two stories of farm succession: a family transition and a non-family transition and include both vegetable and dairy operations. Join us to learn about the successes, challenges, stories and lessons of each transition.

Making Herbal Tinctures and Salves

Presenters: Betzy Bancroft, Vermont Center for Integrative Herbalism

Tinctures and salves are useful remedies to have in one’s home herbal medicine kit, ready when you need them. In this workshop Betzy will demonstrate how to make an herbal infused oil and then turn it into a salve. We will also make a simple tincture, from preparing the herbs to pressing the finished product. The methods we cover can be applied to any herbs, and include the special step peculiar to cannabis, so participants will be able to prepare the remedies they most want and need.

Managing High Tunnel Soil Fertility

Presenter: Vern Grubinger, UVM Extension

This session is intended to help you understand what is going on with your tunnel soils. Vern will review the types of tests that you can use to monitor plant and soil fertility, how to interpret them, and fertilizer options. He will also share results of an on-farm study that collected a variety of production and soil test data from tomato tunnels in several states this past year.

Milk with Dignity: An Update on the Program Bringing a New Day to Farmworkers Across Vermont

Presenters: Migrant Justice; Milk with Dignity Standards Council​

Since Ben and Jerrys' became the first company to sign onto the ground breaking Milk with Dignity Program in 2017, the Milk with Dignity team has been working hard to roll-out the program on farms that are part of Ben and Jerrys' supply chain. Join us for an update on the implementation of Milk with Dignity, challenges and successes, as well as more from Migrant Justice about the future of farmworker-defined Milk with Dignity.

New Breakthroughs in Swede Midge Management

Presenters: Yolanda Chen, UVM; Andy Jones, Intervale Community Farm

Swede midge is an invasive insect pest that attacks all cruciferous crops. Although it was first reported in Vermont in 2007, the midge population has slowly built up to devastating levels in Northern Vermont. The midge has recently caused 60-100% losses in broccoli, causing some organic growers to stop growing broccoli all together. In this workshop, we discuss new promising research results from the Insect Agroecology and Evolution Lab and management coping strategies with two farms that have been dealing with heavy swede midge pressure. This workshop is intended for commercial scale growers.

Pests & Diseases for Homesteaders & Gardeners 

Presenter: Ann Hazelrigg, UVM

This workshop will provide an overview of the pests and diseases we saw in vegetables over the course of the 2018 farm season and share predictions what is coming down the pike for future growing seasons.

POP Clubs: The Power of Children's Farmers Market Programming

Presenters: Lauren Griswold, Vital Communities; Anastasia Tsekeris, Chris Irish, Carol Stedman, POP Coordinators

A Power of Produce (POP) Club is a children's farmers' market program that empowers children to explore the process of buying and eating local foods, and directly supports fruit and vegetable producers by increasing both their sales and customer base. Learn about the successes this program has had in energizing farmers' markets around VT and NH, and how easy it is to bring this engaging program to your local market. This workshop will consist of a short presentation, a panel of experienced POP Club organizers, and a hands on activity. We welcome community members passionate about supporting their local food system, as well as market managers and vendors, to attend. If you're passionate about child nutrition and local farmers, join us for a comprehensive run-down of this powerful union of the two, and leave inspired and equipped to organize a POP Club in your community!

Small Scale Organic Hemp Seed Production

Presenters: Colin Nohl, Vermont Farmacy; Howard Prussack, High Meadows Farm 

In the ever-changing world of hemp, it’s important to have the basics down pact: seed and plant production. We will dive deep into the trials, tribulations and tinkering of small-scale hemp cultivation for seed and fiber. This workshop will cover profitability, scaling up and value-added business models. Bring your questions and ideas!

 

Saturday - Session III: 3:45-5:00pm

A Cabin, a Concert, and a Casual Farm Dinner: Agritourism Stories from Three Unique Farms

Presenters: Tara Pereira, Vermont Fresh Network; Todd Heyman, Fat Sheep Farm; Amy Todisco, VT Food & Farm Tours, Hartshorn Farm; Chris Piana, Fable Farm Fermentory

Meet farmers who have integrated paying guests with their farm production in unique and creative ways. Learn about the paths each farm has taken to develop their agritourism businesses, including the permits they have acquired, the partnerships that have been essential to their success, the challenges they have encountered, the marketing efforts yielding the most return, and pick up resources related to the new Rural Enterprises legislation. Bring your questions to this informative, inspirational farmer panel!

Agricultural Careers: Finding Your Place in Farming

Presenters: Megan Browning, Burnt Rock Farm, NOFA-VT; Eli Hersh, Shadow Creek Farm; Brian Shevrin, Vermont Organic Farmers (VOF); Katy Bauer, Elmer Farm; Hannah Blackmer, Field Stone Farm; Andrea Solazzo, Vermont Foodbank

Feel like you've hit a wall in your agrarian path? Get inspired by the stories of this panel of farmers & agricultural professionals, each with a unique path to the position they hold today. Panelists will share their experience as a jumping off point for a rich group discussion. Bring your questions and stories to share.

Build Your Labor Management Know-How

Presenter: Seth Wilner, University of New Hampshire Extension

Join this interactive workshop to build the knowledge and skills needed to be an effective employee manager on small and mid-sized produce farms. Through interactive exercises, short presentations, and group discussions, participants will assess their current skill set and learn about approaches and tools in six key farm labor management areas: planning, recruiting and hiring, training and supervision; taxes and insurance and record keeping; performance review and ending employment. This session is designed to be a co-learning experience where the farmers and agricultural professionals in the room share and teach each other.  

Farm Mechanizations & Efficiencies

Presenter: Richard Wiswall, Cate Farm

Learn the tools of the trade for greater farming efficiency. Cultivation tools to maximize weed control, harvest tools to speed the harvest, and packhouse tools for quicker and easier processing will all be covered. Cost/benefit analysis will show how long it will take for a new tool to pay for itself. Greenhouse innovations are highlighted as well. This workshop is suitable for commercial growers.

Grain to Grass: Restoring Carbon to Vermont Soils

Presenters: Jack Lazor, Butterworks Farm; Ellie Searles, Butterworks Farm, UVM Student

This workshop will tell the story of Butterworks Farms’ transition from a forage/homegrown grain fed herd of Jersey cows to a 100% forage (hay and pasture) diet. We have been operating at 100% grass fed for close to three years now and have learned many lessons that we will share. We will also discuss how our dairy farming craft and our relationship with the land have both improved. We will wrap things up by highlighting the potential of grass farming to improve soil health and combat climate challenges. Ellie Searles will talk about grass farming from the cow’s point of view because she was the main milker at the time of our transition. 

Grape Expectations; Everything from Choosing Varieties to Eating the Berries

Presenter: Lee Reich, Springtown Farmden

Grapes are relatively easy to grow and very flavorful (with over 5,000 varieties!) as long as special attention is paid to variety, site, and pruning. Rounding out this workshop will be other considerations, including planning, trellising, pest control, and harvesting. The emphasis will be on grapes for eating rather than winemaking.

Grow Your Own Nitrogen: How Cover Crops Can Reduce Your Fertilizer Inputs

Presenters: Becky Maden, UVM Extension; Silas Branson, Intervale Community Farm

How do you know when it is worth seeding a legume cover crop on your vegetable farm? What is the optimal timing for cover crop termination and subsequent vegetable crop planting? And shouldn't you fertilize your vegetable crop just in case? In this workshop we will examine the timing and quantity of nitrogen available for vegetable cash crops planted after legume cover crops to help farmers make data-driven decisions about their nutrient management. Becky will present preliminary findings from a two-year Specialty Crop Block Grant funded trial that sampled nitrate availability on four farms following cover crop incorporation. Come ready to share your own experiences growing cover crops and what role legumes have played in your own nutrient management. This workshop is intended for commercial growers.

Pest & Disease Discussion for Commercial Growers

Presenters: Ann Hazelrigg, Vic Izzo & Scott Lewins, UVM

Join UVM staff for a discussion about pests and diseases. This workshop is geared toward commercial organic vegetable growers or market gardeners. We will go around the room, making a list of pests/diseases people want to talk about and then address each with farmers sharing along with us.

Pine Island Community Farm: Producing Culturally Significant Food for New Americans

Presenters: Chuda Dhaurali, Theogene Mahoro, Harka Kadka, Stacy Burnstein, Casey Engels, Pine Island Community Farm

Pine Island Farm in Colchester, VT is the neighborhood farm for a diverse community of primarily New American users in the Greater Burlington area. It was created to meet the demand for locally produced and culturally significant foods, as well as provide a locale where people can deepen their relationships with the land, nurture cultural values and traditions, and broaden their community connections. In this workshop, the farmers and gardeners of Pine Island will share how the farm came to be, their roles and experiences, and their plans for the future of Pine Island.

Politics, Process & Power

Presenter: Falko Schilling, Action Circles

Participants will learn the about legislative policy making process and how they can use their power to make positive change. The workshop will focus on the how citizens can get involved as individuals and through grassroots organizing. The workshop will provide a detailed overview of the legislative process and how citizens can most effectively engage to shape future policy- food, farming and beyond.

Saving Your Own Seed to Save Money

Presenter:  Carol Collins, Singing Spindle Spinnery

You can save your own seed to spend less on seeds and seedlings that you would usually purchase, and also to earn additional income for the farm, homestead, or family. In this workshop, Carol will share her process for seed saving and what she has learned about when to harvest the seeds, how to dry them and how to separate the seeds from stems/leaves/chaff as well as her techniques for measuring and packing, labeling and selling seeds.

Understanding the Power of Adaptogens and Tonics: Native and Wild Plant Medicines for Health and Vitality

Presenter: Marie Frohlich, Taproot Herbals, LLC

Marie will share her story, along with the restorative benefits, recipes and samples of adaptogens and tonics-nature's elixirs for the stress and strain of our 21st century lifestyle.

Waste to Wealth with Vermicomposting

Presenters: Rhonda Sherman, North Carolina State University

Vermicompost sells for $200 to $1,800 per cubic yard (compared to ~$35 for the same amount of compost). Learn how you can turn "waste" food scraps, animal manures, crop residues, coffee grounds/chaff, brewery waste and more. into vermicompost that will make soil healthy, increase crop yields, and suppress plant diseases and insect pests.This workshop covers the fundamental concepts of vermicompost production, including earthworm husbandry, feedstocks, pre-composting, vermicomposting methodologies and systems, harvesting techniques, and applications. Learn how to start or expand your operations, and see how others are turning waste to profit all around the world. All levels welcome.

Whole Farm Planning & Decision-Making 

Presenter: Jen Miller, NOFA-VT

Are you evaluating a major change to your business model such as scaling up or dropping an enterprise? Are you struggling to determine how that change will impact your quality of life? If so, join Jen Miller from NOFA-VT for an interactive workshop that will provide you with the tools necessary to examine your farm as a whole system. When paired with financial analysis, these tools will improve your ability to make informed decisions that positively impact your quality of life.

Year-Round Indoor Gardening

Presenter: Peter & Deb Burke, The Daily Gardener

In a few simple steps you can grow all the fresh salad greens you need for the winter months or throughout the entire year without a lot of special equipment. No lights, no pumps, no greenhouse needed. Peter & Deb will demonstrate the technique and share pictures of their indoor garden. This workshop is a great introduction for a localvore in need of winter greens, a gardener wanting to extend the garden season, or a market farmer wanting to add greens to CSA offerings.