Farm Training Project's 2002 Summer Workshops
The workshops will provide apprentices, other farm employees and food service personnel an opportunity to broaden their knowledge about organic agricultural methods. Those attending will sharpen their understanding of what is involved in growing organic food and acquire skills to be more self-reliant and to live sustainably.
Workshops will be offered this summer on the following subjects:
Starting from Scratch - compost, crop rotation, soil building - This workshop will cover the use of cover crops to enhance the health of soil. How to begin a first garden, creating rotation plan, and more advanced systems will be observed on farm.
Organic Poultry - Workshop will trace steps from hen house to kitchen table: feeding, cleaning, gathering, sorting, storing eggs. Discussion of cholesterol controversy, how environmental concerns are met and status of nutritionally enhanced eggs.
Organic Goats & Beef Calves - Workshop will focus on housing requirements for goats and beef calves, feeding and watering, hoof trimming, pasture upkeep. Observation skills used in good husbandry.
Organic Agriculture and the Ecological Crisis - Workshop will examine the history and underlying principles behind organic agricultural movement, its impact on the environment and the connection to the larger ecological crisis.
Preserving the Harvest - Ever wonder how to preserve garden fruit and vegetables. This workshop will cover the basic steps for storing, preserving, freezing and canning fruit and vegetables in a safe manner.
Finding / Identifying Mushrooms - An introduction to mushroom morphology, ecology and identification. Includes walk into woods with members of Maine Mycological Association to gather mushrooms.
Culinary and Medicinal Herbs - The workshop will demonstrate the cultural and harvesting methods for perennial and annual culinary herbs, as well as medicinal herbs. Herbalist Amanda Beal will discuss the uses of medicinal herbs including when to harvest, which parts to harvest, and how to tincture herbs.
The Retail / Restaurant Connection - Workshop will focus on what happens once food is brought into a store or restaurant. How it is stored. The purchasing agents will be on hand to talk about pricing, how products get on the self or the menu and what can be done to plan ahead for the coming growing season regarding what farmers can grow. There will also be a cooking demonstration utilizing local products and a sit down-meal provided.
Beekeeping - Several beekeepers will be on hand to answer your questions and to take you through the process of starting to keep bees. Take a close look at the hives, consider equipment needed to begin small-scale beekeeping, and sample some fresh honey. Amy Sprague, Wolf Pine Farms is the host.
Organic Orcharding - Organic orcharding has been called the last organic frontier. Learn how to sustainable methods are used to grow apples rich in nutrients and taste. We'll discuss the soil food web, pest control, compost tea brewing, trafting, etc. Pot luck and pressign fresh organic cider to follow. At Sunnybrook Farm Orchard.
These workshops are free for MOFGA sponsored farm apprentices thanks to a grant received from the Maine Initiative's Harvest Fund. The Farm Training Project represents a collaborative effort among organic farms in Southern Maine to strengthen MOFGA's Apprenticeship Program. For more information contact the project coordinator, Richard Rudolph, 642-5161.