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Cornell Small Farms Program Update Fall 2017

From the Editor

While Fall might feel like the end of the year for many farmers, in some cultures it is seen as the “New Year.” In some senses, after the long hard work of the season, with hay bales and canned tomatoes stored for the coming winter, it makes sense to start over, begin things anew.

Regardless, we can mark Fall as a transition point, and start to reflect on the season that was. This rather rainy and wet year is markedly different from last year at this time, when much of the region was still in a historic drought.

Despite the ups and downs, we can be grateful for making it through the season, and finding ourselves whole again. We hope you enjoy this issue of the Quarterly, and wish you a happy and restful fall.

~ Steve

Register for Online Courses This Winter

Registration is open for the 2017-2018 season of Small Farm Online Courses building the technical and business skills of farmers. Expert farmers and extension educators guide students through the latest research-based information to help improve efficiency and increase profit on small farms.

Students connect with other farmers, work on farm plans, and gain practical tips without leaving their home. Course content can be accessed anywhere with a high-speed internet connection.

Watch our short video about the courses: https://youtu.be/ki8-S5HA950

Most courses are six weeks long. Each week features an evening webinar and follow-up readings, videos, and activities. Students and their instructors connect through online forums and live chat. If you aren’t able to attend the webinars in real-time, they are always recorded for later viewing.

From aspiring to experienced farmers, there is a course for nearly everyone. There’s a handy chart on the course homepage to direct you to the right courses for your experience level. Courses starting soon include Veggie Farming, Berry Production, Poultry Production and more! See all the course listings at https://smallfarms.cornell.edu/online-courses/

Course Calendar

Week of Nov 6 – Dec 15

Week of Jan 15 – Feb 23

Week of Feb 26 – April 6

Agroforestry in Practice: a 3-day training for Service Providers

October 17, 18, and 19, 2017

Schuyler County Cooperative Extension, Montour Falls, NY

Agroforestry is the science and art of combining trees and forests with crop production. It is a topic of great interest to many landowners and farmers, and offers many promising enterprises including maple syrup, log mushroom cultivation, silvopasture (combining trees and livestock) and others.

This three-day course is designed for service providers including extension educators, farm non-profit organizations, public and private foresters, and consultants who routinely work with landowners and farmers to implement best practices.
See the agenda, and learn registration and lodging details at;

Veterans in Agriculture Conference

Calling all veterans interested in farming and the service providers that support them. A Veterans in Agriculture Conference will be held in late fall in central New York. Don’t miss the chance to attend this one-day event featuring educational workshops, networking opportunities, and updates about resources that are available to veterans in New York State. Date and details will be announced by the publication of this paper on the website below.

For more information, or to register, visit the FarmOps website at: smallfarms.cornell.edu/projects/farm-ops/

Steve Gabriel

Steve is an Extension Specialist focused on specialty mushroom production and agroforestry. Throughout his career, Steve has taught thousands of people about the ways farming and forestry can be combined to both benefit the ecology and economies of small farms.  He is also a farmer, author, hiker, and musician.

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