Building Healthy Soil
Soil may be the single most undervalued and precious resource existing on the planet today. In order to truly understand how to build and maintain good soil health one must understand what soil is and how it works. Come out to the American River Ranch and learn about the fundamentals of the physical, chemical and biological properties of soil, as well as how to build and maintain the fertility of your farm or garden’s soil. Register here.
Instructor: Chuck Ingels, UC Cooperative Extension
Chuck Ingels has been the Farm and Horticulture Advisor with UC Cooperative Extension in Sacramento County since 1996. In this role, he conducts research and educational programs for tree fruit and wine grape growers, landscape professionals, and the public. He also oversees the Fair Oaks Horticulture Center, which is maintained by over fifty Master Gardeners. He was the lead technical editor and author of the UC Davis publication, The Home Orchard, published in 2007, as well as Cover Cropping in Vineyards, published in 1998. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in fruit science from Cal Poly, SLO, and a Master’s degree in horticulture from UC Davis. From 1989-96, he was a tree and vine crop analyst for the UC Sustainable Agriculture Research & Education Program.
Harvesting, Grading, and Packing for Wholesale, Retail and Direct Markets
Once you’ve done the hard work of growing beautiful produce, now it’s time to get it to market! Learn how to communicate with buyers, proper post-harvest handling, harvest assessment, and much, much more. Dina Izzo, veteran of the sustainable farming industry in California and farmer-educator to new farmers will take the guesswork out of harvesting and delivering your veggies and fruits so they’re at their peak and helping you build your market presence. Register here.
Instructor: Dina Izzo, Bludog Organic Produce Services
Dina Izzo, owner and founder of BluDog Organic Produce Services, has had a 30 year career in the organic produce industry. Her experience includes management/purchasing in the retail sector with several stores including locally owned chain New Leaf Community Markets headquartered Santa Cruz. Dina's wholesale experience includes nine years with Veritable Vegetable in San Francisco and six years as creator/general manager of ALBA Organics, a wholesale distribution company focused on family scale organic farms in the Salinas Valley. Dina is the founder of Bludog Organic Produce Services, a consulting firm serving small-scale and beginning farmers that works to create and execute marketing plans and strategies for an economically viable business.
Organic Systems Compliance: Creating and Maintaining a Systems Plan
Preparing for organic certification can be daunting. However, it can be a valuable asset to your farm business. In this class you’ll learn about the benefits and drawbacks to certification, different types of certification, as well as how to create and maintain an organic systems plan to ensure compliance with state and federal organics regulations. Register here.
Instructor: Rex Dufour, NCAT/ATTRA
Rex Dufour's background is in entomology and integrated pest management. His work experience includes managing sustainable development projects in Thailand and Laos. Mr. Dufour has worked as both project manager and program specialist for NCAT and heads NCAT's California office. In addition to the ATTRA project, he is involved in several minority farmer outreach projects.
Soil Born Farms Urban Agriculture & Education Project