Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Beginning Farmers Workshop - Growing Produce for Local Markets

The date for the Growing Produce for Local Markets is set for June 25-26 in Springfield, MO.

The workshop starts at 8 am at the Springfield Public Library. The first day includes panel of farmers sharing their experiences growing and marketing vegetables. Several speakers including Mary Hendrickson will be talking about marketing options. The workshop ending time on the first day is 5 pm.

The second day starts at the Springfield Farmers’ Market at 7:30 am to observe set up and the start of the market day. The participants will tour two private farms in the area that grow produce for farmers’ markets and other outlets.

Instruction will be led by Patrick Byers and other University of Missouri Extension Horticultural Specialists.  Lincoln University Cooperative Extension is a joint sponsor of this meeting.

The curriculum to be covered is:

- Pros and cons of selected vegetable species for Missouri soils and climate

- Production strategies for a few of the key vegetable species appropriate to southwest Missouri

- Labor and equipment needs for these crops and their fit into a small farm operation in Missouri
- Marketing options for vegetable crops in Missouri with Mary Hendrickson
- Selling and merchandizing at a farmers market with Eileen Nichols
- Examples of costs of production and potential economic returns for selected vegetable species

Registration is limited to 25 participants. The cost of the workshop is $20 in advance or $30 at the door, but advance registration is requested. Registration includes a meal of Friday and a copy of the "Midwest Vegetable Production Guide for Commercial Growers." To register call the Green County Extension Center at 417-862-9284.

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