Community Calendar

 September  |  October | November  |  December

Look here for events and field days to help you grow organic successfully.

Submit An Event

 

August

North American Permaculture Convergence
Aug. 29-31  |  Clarks Grove, Minn.

Meet up to 1,000 permaculture movers and shakers from across North America to share successes and strategize how to create a permaculture future. Permaculture pioneers, authors, teachers, organizers, consultants, visionaries and farmers get together to share stories and build symbiotic relationships. Learn more and register.

29th Annual Labor Day Stock Dog Trial
Aug. 29-Sept. 1  |  Hudson, Wis.

Hosted by the Wisconsin Working Dog Association, this sheep herding competition will feature some of the country’s best stock dogs and dog handlers. The event is open to the public and located at the Badlands Sno-Park site at 772 Kinney Road, Hudson, Wis.  Learn more.

__________________________________________________________________________

September

Post NAPC Permaculture Tour of the Driftless Region
Sept. 1-2  |  Driftless Region

Taking place right after the North American Permaculture Convergence, a tour of some of the best of what the upper Midwest has to offer. The tour will travel to 3 states as you visit Badgersett Research Farm, Kinstone Academy of Applied Permaculture, New Forest Farm, and Seed Savers Exchange.  Learn more and register

Online Soil Biology Class
Sept. 2-Dec. 10  |  University of Minnesota

This course will introduce basic soil biology concepts, including soil organisms and the roles they play, before focusing on interactions between plant root systems and soil microorganisms. Includes discussion on various management practices that build and sustain a rich soil ecosystem. This course will be delivered online via Moodle (the open-source learning platform used at the University of Minnesota), with no face-to-face requirements. Learn more about the course or how to register as a non-degree student.

Legal Issues Workshop
Sept. 2  |  Free  |  Springfield, Ill.

Hosted by The Land Connections, a “train the trainers” event for those who help farmers with legal issues. Lead by Rachel Armstrong of Farm Commons, this event will cover how to create a business entity, writing by-laws and operating agreements, negotiating land leases, hiring employees and interns and much more. Learn more and register.

Legal Issues Workshop
Sept. 3  |  Free  |  Champaign, Ill.

Hosted by The Land Connections, a “train the trainers” event for those who help farmers with legal issues. Lead by Rachel Armstrong of Farm Commons, this event will cover how to create a business entity, writing by-laws and operating agreements, negotiating land leases, hiring employees and interns and much more. Learn more and register.

Farm-Scale Perennial Agriculture Tour
Sept. 3  |  Forest Agriculture Enterprises  |  Viola, Wis.

A full-day educational tour with farmer Mark Shepard who has modeled his perennial farm on native ecosystems. Contact Lois Kennis for more information and to register at olso2074@umn.edu or 507-280-2863.

Safe Food Sampling Training
Sept. 3  |  5:30-7:30 p.m.  |  St. Charles, Minn.

What does kohlrabi taste like? What are kale chips? Let your customers try it; they’ll like it. Learn from UM Extension Specialist on how to offer food samples with food safety principles in mind. Cost is $10 and pre-registration is preferred. Register online or at 507-457-6440.

Wellspring Permaculture Tour
Sept. 4  |  Wellspring Education Center and Organic Farm  |  West Bend, Wis.

Join Wellspring’s permaculturist, Adrian Lee, for a two-hour tour of Wellspring to view how they have integrated renewable technologies and regenerative agricultural systems to live more holistically. From simple, to the complex, they you will walk and discuss sustainable practices that can easily be integrated into your life. Learn more.

Third Crop Walk-N-Talk
Sept. 4  |  Free |  Fairmont, Minn.

The Moritz’ will demonstrate mechanical harvesting of hazelnuts. They will be harvesting with a BEI Blueberry Harvester which easily accommodates hazelnut harvesting. In addition to harvesting, Mr. Moritz will share with us about his planting and some of the challenges and opportunities he has had.  Learn more.

Organic Dairying and Cattle Care
Sept. 5  |  1-4 p.m.  |  Bloomfield, Iowa

Hosted by Practical Farmers of Iowa and sponsored by MOSES, tour the dairy and learn how the family cares for and feeds their milk cows. The paddock and pasture system and its management will be described. The family will also discuss some cow health issues and the organic treatments for those conditions. The Maibach’s veterinarian, or a representative from Organic Valley, will be on hand to speak to attendees. Learn more.

Legal Issues Workshop
Sept. 5  |  Free  |  Carbondale, Ill.

Hosted by The Land Connections, a “train the trainers” event for those who help farmers with legal issues. Lead by Rachel Armstrong of Farm Commons, this event will cover how to create a business entity, writing by-laws and operating agreements, negotiating land leases, hiring employees and interns and much more. Learn more and register.

Foraging for Wild Edibles Workshop
Sept. 6  |  Wellspring Education Center and Organic Farm  |  West Bend, Wis.

Learn about foraging safety, ethics, and plant families. Collect, harvest and taste wild edibles currently in season. After the forage, enjoy appetizers featuring plants found on the tour. Bring home what you collect as well as recipes and guides for future foraging.  Learn more.

Minnesota Grown Indigo Workshop
Sept. 6  |  Sandbox Center for Regenerative Entrepreneurship  |  Ham Lake, Minn.

Join the Sandbox Center as they explore the fine art of growing, harvesting, and dyeing with cold climate varieties of Indigo. By the end of the class, students will have learned the basic techniques for cultivating their own indigo crop and making blue dye from it.  Students will also take a tour of the Aquaculture Natural Dye Garden and learn to harvest the Indigo leaves. Learn more.

Fall Foraging Workshop
Sept. 8  |  $20  |  6 p.m.  |  Amery, Wis.

Join Hungry Turtle Farm for tips on foraging wild foods. Weather permitting, they will take a walk in the early fall meadows and woods, looking for wild fruits, nuts, greens, and mushrooms. Discussion afterwords will include what can make from the finds, talk about safe foraging techniques, and discussion on valuable resources for foragers. Learn more and register.

Webinar: Financial Analysis Using Your Schedule F
Sept. 9  |  7 p.m.  |  Free

Paul Dietmann from Badgerland Financial explains how to use your Schedule F (Farm Income) tax form in combination with an annual balance sheet to analyze your farm’s profitability and cash flow.  Learn more and register.

Legal Issues Workshop
Sept. 9  |  Free  |  Grayslake, Ill.

Hosted by The Land Connections, a “train the trainers” event for those who help farmers with legal issues. Lead by Rachel Armstrong of Farm Commons, this event will cover how to create a business entity, writing by-laws and operating agreements, negotiating land leases, hiring employees and interns and much more. Learn more and register.

Community-Based Farm Start-Up
Sept. 9  |  10 a.m.-1:30 p.m.  |  Tama, Iowa

Hosted by Practical Farmers of Iowa, learn what it means to integrate a farm business with community-based goals and input from the beginning. Started in 2013, Red Earth Gardens is a fruit and vegetable farm entering its second year transitioning former corn and soybean ground to certified organic in 2015. The farm also serves as a community education resource and provides space for the Meskwaki Growers’ Cooperative, which is launching in 2014 with the start of a community garden incubator space for interested growers. Learn more.

Webinar: Conservation of the Organic Farm
Sept. 10  |  12 p.m. Central  |  Free

Hosted by ATTRA, conservation professionals and landowners will learn how Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) conservation practices and enhancements can provide high-value production and biodiversity benefits while at the same time aiding producers in obtaining or maintaining their USDA organic status. Learn more and register.

Improving Soil Health
Sept. 11  |  1-4 p.m.  |  Cuba City, Wis.

This MOSES field day will illustrate an organic method of growing no-till soybeans, using a rolled rye mulch under a field of drilled soybeans. This method, which builds soil at the same time a crop is being grown, is gaining popularity for a variety of vegetable and agronomic crops. Learn more.

Cover Crops and Soil Health Field Day
Sept. 11  |  8:30 a.m.-2 p.m.  |  Lamberton, Minn.

Hosted by the Southwest Research & Outreach Center, featured topics include cover crop integration in corn systems, benefits of soil health and advanced nutrient management, programming assistance for adopting cover crops, hands-on field demonstrations of new equipment for seeding cover crops, and question and answer sessions.  Learn more.

Cider Apple Production Workshop and Orchard Walk
Sept. 11  |  Maiden Rock Apples, Cidery and Winery  |  Stockholm, Wis.

UW-Extension and Maiden Rock Apples, Cider & Winery invite you to attend an educational workshop and orchard walk focused on commercial production and processing of cider apples. A brief history of cider production will start off the workshop, followed by cultural information detailing commercial cider apple production and crop management from planting to harvest, grafting, budding and pruning. Followed by a discussion of commercial cider processing and hard cider production, an orchard walk and sampling of hard ciders by Maiden Rock Cidery.   Learn more.

Farm Aid 2014
Sept. 13  |  Walnut Creek Amphitheater  |  Raleigh, N.C.

Farm Aid 2014 will feature Willie Nelson & Family, Neil Young, John Mellencamp, Dave Matthews & Tim Reynolds, Jack White and many more artists. It will be a full day of amazing music, homegrown food, hand-on activities and of course, family farmers.  Learn more.

Field Day
Sept. 13  |  10 a.m.-5 p.m.  |  $20  |  Minnetrista, Minn.

The Natural Fiber Alliance and Fiber Farm Tour offer a networking event and field day at Gale Woods Farm. Tour the farm and hear from speakers Bob Padula and Judy Lewman.  Learn more and register.

Third Crop Walk-N-Talk – Pollinator Habitat
Sept. 15  |  Free |  St. Peter, Minn.

Angela and Bryan Buffington will be hosting this field day to visit their established 1.75 acres of pollinator habitat on land they own that was previously in corn and soybeans. Attendees will be able to visit the site and learn about pollinator habitat establishment and the path to a successful establishment.  Learn more.

Webinar: Evaluating Investments and Operational Changes
Sept. 16  |  7 p.m.  |  Free

Chris Blanchard from Flying Rutabaga Works explains which finance tools to use to make decisions about equipment purchases, farm expansion, and more. Learn more and register.

Pasture Walk & Facilitated Discussion Group
Sept. 16  |  1 p.m.  |  Platteville, Wis.

Hosted by Great River Graziers, this field day covers portable windbreak strategies and grazing Sudan grass. Learn more.

Third Crop Walk-N-Talk – Pollinator Habitat
Sept. 16  |  1-4 p.m.  |  Free |  Waseca, Minn.

Participants will learn about several research projects related to renewable energy, hazelnuts and wind protection at this field day at the SROC in Waseca. Specifically, researchers will discuss alley cropping for bioenergy; willow, grasses and poplar for bioenergy, living snowfence and hazelnut research plots. This unique field day will provide an opportunity to learn and ask questions about a diverse set of topics around agroforestry. Learn more.

CROPP Cooperative’s 2014 Organic Veterinary Workshop
Sept. 17-19   |  Viroqua, Wis.

Join CROPP Cooperative to learn from world-class veterinarians who specialize in organic management. Don’t miss your opportunity to gain  knowledge about organic herd health techniques and related topics such as homeopathy, acupuncture, fly control, agronomy and more. Workshop includes both classroom and hands-on sessions not offered anywhere else. Register and learn more.

Aquaponics Master Class
Sept. 18-20  |  8:00 a.m.  |  Montello, Wis.

A comprehensive course covering all aspects of aquaponics and controlled environment agriculture. The topics covered include aquaponic methods and applications, crop choices and recommendations, water quality, daily operation and growing techniques, greenhouses and environmental control, fish biology and feeds, plant care and health, system start up and business considerations. Register and learn more.

Mead Making Workshop
Sept. 18  |  Wellspring Education Center and Organic Farm  |  West Bend, Wis.

Mead, the oldest beverage known to the world, is a fermented blend of pure honey, water and yeast. Often fruits, flowers and spices are added producing a dry, semi-sweet, sweet or even sparkling mead. Mead is something that is quite easy to make and you can join John Holzwart as he shares his experiences with this enjoyable past time.  Participants will make one batch of mead with the class and take home a small bottle for themselves.  Learn more.

Organic Bean Field Day
Sept. 19  |  Madison, Minn.

Join the University of Minnesota research partners at the Fernholz farm to learn about multiple varieties of both general purpose and food-type organic soybeans. Researchers are paying particular attention to those soybean varieties that are competitive with weeds, are high yielding, and have improved root systems and nitrogen fixation potential all while maintaining adequate levels of protein and oil. All those interested in organic bean production are welcome to attend. For more information contact Jill Sackett, University of Minnesota Extension at 507-389-5541.

Biodynamic Intensive in the Twin Cities
Sept. 19-20  |  $80  |  Roseville, Minn.

This workshop will cover an overview of biodynamic gardening with an emphasis on a study of plant families, crop rotations and companion planting, and biodynamic preparations. Gardeners of all levels are welcome; special emphasis will be given to urban gardening.  Learn more.

Grow Local! Workshop for Local Food Growers & Producers
Sept. 20  |  Council Bluffs, Iowa

Golden Hills RC&D—Southwest Iowa Food & Farm Initiative presents this workshop. Hear stories and get advice from successful local growers and specialty crop producers, learn how to market your agri-business, find funds to launch your specialty crop, and leave with resources and information to help your business grow.  Learn more.

Organic Valley Farm Discovery
Sept. 20  |  11 a.m.-2 p.m.  |  Multiple locations

Public farm tours at various family farms in Iowa, Minnesota, and Wisconsin. Learn more.

Hoedown
Sept. 20  |  3-9 p.m.  |  Hutchinson, Minn.

Celebrate the end of the season at York Farm. Potluck dinner, live music with square dance calling by Shake These Bones + Guests, bonfire, and friendship. If it is warm, they have a farm pond where people can swim. They hope to make this a no-waste event, so please bring your own eating utensils.  Learn more.

Food Preservation Weekend
Sept. 20-21  |  Wellspring Education Center and Organic Farm  |  West Bend, Wis.

Immerse yourself in a weekend workshop all about food preservation! Lead by Master Preserver Christina Ward, students will go home with the knowledge to start or expand upon their own food processing for long term storage. In this hands on workshop, students will work together, learning and creating several types of preserved foods to take home. Learn more.

Farm Finances Workshop
Sept. 22  |  $50  |  9:30 a.m.-1 p.m.  |  Rogers, Minn.

Sponsored by MFVGA and USDA RMA, this workshop will show how specific financial tools can be used by new farms, small farms and large diversified farms. Craig Chase is a former Farm Management Field Specialist for Iowa State University Extension and Outreach. This workshop uses material from the book “Fearless Farm Finances.” Learn more and register.

Scaling Up Your Business and Packaging & Grading Produce
Sept. 22  |  $30  |  9 a.m.-2 p.m.  |  Lawrence, Kan.

This workshop is part of the Growing Growers series, which offers public workshops throughout the year on skills required to run a local farm. Contact Marlin to learn more or register: batesm@k-state.edu.

Stewardship at Seven W Farm
Sept. 26  |  10 a.m.-3 p.m.  |  Paullina, Iowa

Hosted by Practical Farmers of Iowa. The day will begin with a farm tour and discussion of Biological Monitoring, an aspect of Holistic Management that helps farmers evaluate their land and determine whether different management is necessary. Following lunch, discussion will center around the farm’s small grain production and how this alternative to corn and soybeans fits into the farm model. The last part of the day will be a discussion about forage chains and cover crops, and how the Wilsons use both in grass-based livestock systems and organic row-crop systems. Learn more.

5th Annual WEI / Growing Power Regional Training Weekend
Sept. 27-28  |    Women’s Environmental Institute  |  North Branch, Minn.

This weekend offers urban and rural-based participants the opportunity to learn, plan, develop, operate, and sustain community food and farming projects. Project participants will acquire improved skills and knowledge they can take back to their communities and pass on to others. Workshops include: Build a Hoop House, Build soil with works amd compost, grow microgreens for health and income, grow mushrooms indoors, raise fish and greens together (aquaponics) and a bonfire chat with Will Allen. Learn more.

2014 America’s Watershed Initiative Summit
Sept. 30-Oct. 2  |  Galt House Hotel  |  Louisville, Ky.

The summit will bring together key private, public, and non-profit sector stakeholders to improve governance of the Mississippi Watershed. AWI is a collaboration that seeks solutions for meeting the multiple demands placed on the vast and complex Mississippi watershed system by integrating issues, partners and ideas at the full watershed scale. Register and learn more.

__________________________________________________________________________

October

Farmer Grant Writing Workshop
Oct. 1  |  6-9 p.m.  |  Springfield, Ill.

Existing and prospective farmers are invited to participate in a grant writing workshop to learn about the basics of grant writing as well as specifics on grants available through the North Central Region SARE Farmer Rancher Grant Program and the Ill. Dept of Agriculture. Learn more and register.

Webinar: Organic Livestock Inputs
Oct. 1  |  12 p.m.  |  Free

Organized by OEFFA, this webinar will cover commonly used organic inputs, what organic inspectors look for, and how livestock inputs are evaluated. It includes a pre-course self-study; in-class discussion and questions, examples and exercises; and a post-course evaluation. Participants who meet minimum requirements will receive a Certificate of Completion. Limited space is available.  Learn more.

Third Crop Walk-N-Talk
Oct. 1  |  Free  |  Granada, Minn.

This Walk-N-Talk will discuss the Tile Outlet Treatment Train demonstration and the MN Agricultural Water Quality Certification Program. Conservation practices are targeted to the upland, near the tile outlet and in the stream. We will be discussing the Certification Program, water quality practices being implemented on the Roberts farm and funding opportunities for landowners in the Elm Creek Watershed who want to install conservation practices on their farm.  Learn more.

Third Crop Walk-N-Talk
Oct. 4  |  Hazelnut Valley Farm  |  Lake City, Minn.

Norm Erickson will be hosting tours of the farm in conjunction with the Johnny Appleseed Festival in Lake City. Norm is a long time hazelnut grower and has developed hazelnut processing equipment, uses hazelnut co-products for renewable energy, sells hazelnuts and hazelnut oil in addition to managing his 12 acres of hazelnuts. Attendees should check the Lake City Chamber of Commerce website for details on how to participate in the farm tours.  Learn more.

Biodynamic Intensive in the Twin Cities
Oct. 4-5  |  $80  |  Roseville, Minn.

This workshop will cover an overview of biodynamic gardening with an emphasis on cosmic rhythms, using a biodynamic calendar and making biodynamic compost. Gardeners of all levels are welcome; special emphasis will be given to urban gardening.  Learn more.

Webinar: Organic Farming and Soil Health
Oct. 7  |  4 p.m.

Oregon Tilth and the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service present this webinar about organic farming and soil health.  The information needed to participate can be found at ConservationWebinars.net a month prior to each date. This free webinar is available to the public. Learn more.

2014 Fiber Farm Tour
Oct. 11-12  |  9 a.m.-5 p.m.  |  Minnesota

A self-guided tour of 5 fiber farms where you can see the fiber farming operations, fiber produced and a chance to talk with the farmers. Animals include sheep, alpacas, llamas, angora, yaks and other fiber animals. International Fiber Artist Janice Arnold will provide a workshop, presentation and reception of her work with the natural fiber felt. Learn more.

The “Dairy” Beginning: Basics of Goat Dairy Management
Oct. 13  |  12-2 p.m.  |  Knoxville, Iowa

Hosted by Practical Farmers of Iowa, tour an active goat dairy and learn the foundations of starting a healthy, productive herd. Lois Reichert will cover the basics of animal care and management – nutrition, housing, fencing and health – as well as the fundamentals of goat dairying: milk prep, sanitation and proper handling. She will briefly discuss the process of starting a licensed dairy and what might be expected, and share some tidbits of cheese-making knowledge. Learn more.

18th IFOAM Organic World Congress
Oct. 13-15  |  Istanbul, Turkey

This congress takes place every three years. The aim of the congress and surrounding activities is to share experiences, innovations, knowledge about the organic world with a special attention on the organizing country. This year’s keynotes include Anna Lappe, who presented at the 2014 MOSES Conference, and Will Allen of Growing Power. Learn more.

Introduction to Seed Saving
Oct. 23  |  $10  |  6 p.m.  |  Amery, Wis.

Join Hungry Turtle Farm for this introduction to seed saving that will provide a basic foundation to save your own seeds. Highlights include the basic steps to plant, grow, harvest, clean, store and exchange seeds. While this class lecture-based, it will establish the necessary vocabulary and background needed for any beginning grower and seed saver. Learn more and register.

Restoration Agriculture and Mob Grazing Workshop
Oct. 31-Nov. 1  |  8 a.m.-6 p.m.  |  Clark, Mo.

Join Green Pastures Farm as they install a permaculture swale system with Mark Shepard. This 3-day, hands-on educational workshop will cover how to design, install, and incorporate a swale system into any grazing system. Cost is $550 per person/ $1000 per couple. Learn more and register by Oct. 1 – only 40 spots available.

__________________________________________________________________________

November

Feast! Festival & Tradeshow
Nov. 2-3  |  Rochester, Minn.

The FEAST Local Food Network is a partnership of many organizations, businesses, and individuals committed to growing a sustainable, local and regional food system which encourages innovation. Sunday will be open for the public and Monday will be an industry-only conference and tradeshow exclusively for food growers, makers and buyers. Learn more.

Grow and Market Specialty Grains
Nov. 3-5  |  Champaign, Ill.

The Land Connection brings you a 3-day specialty and organic grains training intensive. Topics include how to access your land and operation for grain growing capability; identify ideal grain crop choices for your farm and markets; plan for soil fertility and pest management; and identify, promote to, and sell both to wholesale markets and directly to consumers.  Learn more.

Growing Power National-International Urban and Small Farm Conference
Nov. 6-9  |  Potawatomi Bingo Casino  |  Milwaukee, Wis.

Get ready for an intensive conference that covers urban farming from top to bottom: aquaculture, composting and vermicomposting, planning strategies, education, youth programming, fund raising, food policy, food justice and much more! Check out the Growing Power website as more details become available.

Fall Harvest Gathering for Women
Nov. 7-9  |  Cedar Valley Resort  |  Whalen, Minn.

Get to know other women who care passionately about farming and the earth. Some attendees farm and some want to farm, but all enjoy sharing and learning from each other at the annual Fall Harvest Gathering. Costs are reasonable and scholarships are available. All women are welcome. Learn more.

Slow Money Gathering
Nov. 10-12  |  Louisville, KY

Help change the way we view, and invest, in our food system! Featuring world-renowned thought leaders, including farmer and author Joel Salatin, environmental activist Vandana Shiva and Mary Berry, daughter of Wendell Berry and executive director of The Berry Center.  Learn more.

Food for Tomorrow Conference
Nov. 11-12  |  Pocantico Hills, N.Y.

Hosted by New York Times food writer Mark Bittman, the conference will bring together executives, nonprofit leaders, food researchers, chefs, policymakers, corporations, and activists from around the world to discuss and develop innovative solutions to alleviating hunger, obesity, and poverty.  Learn more.

Biodynamic Conference: Farming for Health
Nov. 13-16  |  Hyatt Regency  |  Louisville, Ky.

The biennial Biodynamic Conference, hosted by the Biodynamic Association, is the foremost opportunity in North America to learn about biodynamics, along with innovations from organic, permaculture, and ecological agriculture. Events include over 60 workshops, on-farm field days, pre-conference workshops and more.  Learn more and register.

Aquaponics Master Class
Nov. 13-15  |  8:00 a.m.  |  Montello, Wis.

A comprehensive course covering all aspects of aquaponics and controlled environment agriculture. The topics covered include aquaponic methods and applications, crop choices and recommendations, water quality, daily operation and growing techniques, greenhouses and environmental control, fish biology and feeds, plant care and health, system start up and business considerations.  Learn more and register.

5th National Conference for Women in Sustainable Agriculture
Nov. 14-15  |  Fairfield, Iowa

The conference will be at the Fairfield Arts and Convention Center. The conference is sponsored by the Women Food & Ag Network (WFAN).  Learn more.

Milling Small Grains and Aquaponics Production
Nov. 15  |  1-4 p.m.  |  Panora, Iowa

Hosted by Practical Farmers of Iowa, father-son team Earl and Jeff Hafner will show attendees their certified organic stone mill where they mill rye, buckwheat, wheat and corn. They will also lead a tour of their aquaponics production area, and request that attendees bring their high tunnel gardening expertise to share! Learn more.

 __________________________________________________________________________

December

Webinar: Nutrient Budgeting
Dec. 2  |  4 p.m.

Oregon Tilth and the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service present this webinar about nutrient budgeting and organic considerations for implementing conservation practice standard 590.  The information needed to participate can be found at ConservationWebinars.net a month prior to each date. This free webinar is available to the public. Click here for more information.