Next SFA Deep Winter Greenhouse Class Announced

Deep RootsRegistration is now open for our next Deep Roots Farmer Development Program short course on “Deep Winter Production of Greens and Livestock Fodder Utilizing Passive Solar Energy,” set for Nov. 7, 2015, at Paradox Farm north of Ashby, Minn.

During the class, Paradox Farm owners Sue Wika and Tom Prieve will provide a detailed overview of the construction and operation of their deep-winter greenhouse, which utilizes passive solar energy with underground heat storage. The greenhouse provides greens for local consumers. In addition, the structure is utilized to produce fodder for the farm livestock.

Students will be in the greenhouse to see how greens and fodder are planted and harvested. This is a hands-on workshop. Students should be prepared to get their hands in the soil.

Registrants: Don’t forget to bring a sack lunch. Cost is $100. Farm Skills 101 graduates may register for $30.

Click here to register.

Paradox Farm is at 11643 State Hwy 78, Ashby, MN 56309 (Directions: 7 miles north of Ashby; 10 miles south of Battle Lake). For more information, contact gro.n1438062437m-afs1438062437@eus1438062437.

KCIM Soil Health Webinar with Dr. Shannon Osbourne Now Archived

KCIM Keep Cattle in MinnesotaOur most recent Keep Cattle in Minnesota webinar was April 3 and featured Dr. Shannon Osbourne of ARS in Brookings, S.D. Dr. Osborne is a Research Agronomist with the US Dept of Agriculture-Agricultural Research Service whose research focuses on understanding how soil and crop management options influence the soil environment and how these practices can be developed into production systems that maintain or improve our soil resource conservation and environmental quality, while providing production efficiency.

Dr. Osborne’s presentation focused on the impact of crop diversity, no-till, cover crops and residue removal on soil health properties, including soil physical properties and their interaction with soil biological properties. Specific information will included how crop diversity and cover crops impact soil aggregation, carbon and components of soil organic matter.

Click here to view this and past webinars on our new Webinar Homepage.

Next Soil Health Webinar is April 3 with Dr. Shannon Osbourne

KCIM Keep Cattle in MinnesotaOur next free Keep Cattle in Minnesota webinar is set for 1-2:30 p.m. April 3 and will feature Dr. Shannon Osbourne of ARS in Brookings, S.D.

Dr. Osborne is a Research Agronomist with the US Dept of Agricultural-Agricultural Research Service whose research focuses on understanding how soil and crop management options influence the soil environment and how these practices can be developed into production systems that maintain or improve our soil resource conservation and environmental quality, while providing production efficiency.

This webinar is free and open to all. Click here to register.

Dr. Osborne’s presentation will focus on the impact of crop diversity, no-till, cover crops and residue removal on soil health properties, including soil physical properties and their interaction with soil biological properties. Specific information will included how crop diversity and cover crops impact soil aggregation, carbon and components of soil organic matter.

For more information on these and all SFA KCIM webinars, visit our Keep Cattle in Minnesota homepage. These webinars are presented with support by The Pasture Project.

Our two previous webinars, including the most recent from March 6, ”Strategies for Implementing Cover Crops,” led by Livestock & Grazing Specialist Kent Solberg, are also archived on our KCIM homepage.

New SFA Resource Now Available: Beginning Grazier Handbook

Grazier handbook LOGODesigned to assist the beginning grazier in designing and implementing a grazing system, our new Beginning Grazier Handbook is a starting place to quickly and easily find pertinent information. Most of the resources listed include website links for additional interest-specific grazing information.

The Handbook includes:

  • Technical assistance – a list of “go-to” people who can provide advice to help you achieve a successful grazing system.
  • Information on training, educational opportunities, mentors, networks, and organizations to help you gain knowledge of grazing and grazing systems.
  • Production resources that provide you with reading materials on grazing systems.
  • Farm business planning information that helps farmers understand the business side of grazing – recordkeeping, business planning, and marketing opportunities of your products.
  • Where to go in Minnesota for loans and grants to help with financing the infrastructure needed for a grazing system.

In the appendices are lists of businesses that supply equipment and seeds for grazing systems. Use this list to find suppliers and negotiate the best value when purchasing. The goal of the handbook was to provide information; listing does not mean we endorse any of these suppliers.

 

Click here to download the SFA Beginning Grazier Handbook.

This handbook was compiled by SFA as part of the Keep Cattle in Minnesota Project, with support from the Minnesota Natural Resources Conservation Service and the Pasture Project.

SFA Soil Health Webinar a Success; Next is April 3

KCIM Keep Cattle in MinnesotaNearly 75 folks registered for our free Keep Cattle in Minnesota webinar, “Strategies for Implementing Cover Crops,” led by Livestock & Grazing Specialist Kent Solberg on March 6.

The webinar is archived on our Keep Cattle in Minnesota homepage.

As Kent discussed in the webinar, cover crops are a powerful tool farmers can use to improve soil health. Specifically, cover crops aid in keeping soil covered, add diversity to the rotation, keep a living root in the soil, and serve as the “bridge” between cropping systems and integration of livestock.

Kent reviewed the principles of building soil health and integration of cover crops, and he discussed real-world examples of how adding cover crops to your farm can move you toward productivity and profitability.

This webinar is the second in a series of KCIM webinars SFA has planned. Others are slated forApril 3 and Nov. 6; keep watching SFA Connect for details about all upcoming KCIM webinars and programming.

For more information, visit our Keep Cattle in Minnesota homepage.

These webinars are made possible thanks to The Pasture Project.