In less than two weeks, our NOFA-NY Winter Conference in Saratoga Springs begins!
From reduced tillage options, pack shed design, and food safety to high tunnel planning, equipment selection and safety…the conference offers a diverse program with something for ALL vegetable growers. Whether you’re just starting or have grown produce for years, whether you have a micro farm or a larger farm, no matter what type of vegetable operation you have or are contemplating, you’ll find intriguing and hopefully enlightening workshops at this year’s conference.
Friday morning, January 22, the conference starts with ideas for reducing tillage from Four Winds Farm, Goranson Farm and researchers from Cornell University. Thanks to Fellenz Family Farm, Cornell Vegetable Program, and NCAT, high tunnels will be featured Friday afternoon and Saturday morning with High Tunnels: Maximize Your Profit and Productivity and High Tunnel Planning and Soil Management.
Saturday’s three-hour intensive from 1:15-4:30 pm, High Tunnels: Maximize Your Profit and Productivity will share the results of a two-year, 20 farm study looking at long-term soil health and fertility in a high tunnel, coupled with techniques based on greenhouse practices for maximizing high tunnel productivity and profit. Saturday morning, High Tunnel Planning and Soil Management will outline the basics for starting up a high tunnel on your farm while addressing soil health and fertility concerns.
Right before lunch on Saturday, you’ll have an opportunity to learn the current state of the art from Cornell’s Vegetable Program for organic controls for swede midge in Swede Midge: What Brassica Growers Should Know.
The Pack Shed will be the focus after lunch. If you’re interested in improving the efficiency of your pack shed, considering new equipment for the pack shed, or want to ensure that your post-harvest handling practices are sound, consider attending the Pack Shed Sanitation for Produce Safety and Pack Shed Design and Equipment for the Mixed Vegetable Farm workshops on Saturday afternoon. Presenters include Pleasant Valley Farm, Early Morning Farm, and Cornell University.
Sunday morning will start with soil health and disease management from the perspective of cover crops in Managing Soil Health and Crop Diseases with Brassica Cover Crops (Cornell Cooperative Extension of Ulster County). This is followed by Incorporating Seed Production in a Small-Scale Vegetable Rotation with Erin Enouen and Sam Zurofsky from Long Season Farm and the Hudson Valley Seed Library on how to integrate seed
production into a mixed vegetable operation. All in all, this year’s conference will offer a very diverse program that will provide lots of learning opportunities for vegetable growers.