A Seed Starting Demonstration; Preparing for Spring Planting; and Featuring the Farm’s 7 High Tunnels, Greenhouse, and Field Production
ALLIANCE FIELD DAY: FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 17, 2017
(HOSTED BY THE MISSISSIPPI BAND OF CHOCTAW INDIANS)
We can do something special, if we work together! The Alliance, partners and local farmers have shown that willingness to work together. The first, and most important priority, was to make a real investment in the skill and knowledge development of farmers and aspiring farmers. To date, 51 field days have been conducted since we started in 2012. Field days are now being hosted by local farms, located throughout the state. Thanks to all of you, these on-farm hands-on learning opportunities have been a success. Together we can leverage the work of these local farms and local farmer networks, forming through these field days, to champion a revival of family farms.
With your continued support and involvement, 2017 will be AWESOME! We are pleased to have so many new host sites – local farms, Mississippi State University and Alcorn State University Research and Demonstration Farms, and Mississippi Department of Education’s Vocational and Technical Centers. This year we hope to conduct 12 monthly field days and 4 Follow-on Workshops/Field Days. These quarterly Follow-on Workshops/Field Days are designed to help farmers adopt critical agricultural practices and appropriate technologies that are essential to growing their operations and accessing larger and larger markets. As an example, during one of the quarterly Follow-on Workshops/Field Days on irrigation and water management participants will not only find out about the latest irrigation technology, but also learn how to install and operate an irrigation system for a small farming operation. Anyone interested in hosting a field day/training or getting more information should send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, ASAP!
TOUR AND LEARN FROM SUSTAINABLE FARMING OPERATIONS! WORK WITH AND SUPPORT LOCAL FARMERS AND GROWERS!
Y0U CAN HELP BY:
- PARTICIPATING IN THESE EVENTS
- HOSTING A FIELD DAY/TRAINING SESSION
- BECOMING A SPEAKER/PRESENTER
- BECOMING A PARTNER/SPONSOR
- MAKING A DONATION
LAST FIELD DAY (FRIDAY, JANUARY 20, 2017)
Special thanks to Ole Brook Organics for hosting this event. Topics included: “Preparing for Spring Planting and High Tunnels; Nutritional Value of Specialty Crops: Turmeric, Blueberries, and Muscadine; and Featuring the Farm’s Turmeric and Ginger”. Experts/presenters included: Dr. Girish K. Panicker, Associate Professor and Director of the Center for Conservation Research with Alcorn State University (ASU); and Dr. William B. Evans, Associate Research Professor, Truck Crops Experiment Station with Mississippi State University (MSU); and Al Buie, farm owner.
I had to miss this one because I’m recovering from surgery, but everyone is saying the field day was great. Participants came from all around the state and really enjoyed the experience. Many participants stayed long after the program ended. Robbie Pollard with the Happy Foods Project, did a great job kicking off the program. Local NRCS staff provided information and discussed their programs with field day participants. Dr. Panicker from ASU, Dr. Evans from MSU, and Al Buie did a great job. Al Buie provided a nice review of the farm’s history and vision. Participants gave very high marks during the taste testing of his new line of organic ginger tea. Participants also got dirty harvesting in the high tunnel and all took home turmeric rhizomes, ginger, melon and gourd seeds.
NEXT FIELD DAY (FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 17, 2017)
WE ARE PLEASED THAT THE FEBRUARY 17TH FIELD DAY WILL BE HOSTED BY THE MISSISSIPPI BAND OF CHOCTAW INDIANS. The Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians operates five farms, 18 high tunnels and one greenhouse that are utilized for wholesale and CSA shares. Two of their farms are the ONLY tribally-owned certified organic produce operations in the nation. The three other farms will become certified organic this year. This event will be held at their Farm I, between Carthage and Kosciusko. Farm I is one of their USDA Certified Organic farms and consists of seven high tunnels, one greenhouse for plug production, and one acre of field production. High tunnel and field crops include tomatoes, tomatoberrys, cucumbers, eggplant, kale, and collards. YOU DON’T WANT TO MISS THIS ONE!
Topics will include: “A Seed Starting Demonstration; Preparing for Spring Planting; and Featuring the Farm’s High Tunnels, Greenhouse, and Field Production”. Experts from Mississippi State University Extension Service, Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station, Alcorn State University Extension Program, and experienced farmers will participate and help to provide greater support to local farmers and growers.
REGISTRATION: 10:00AM. PROGRAM: 10:30AM TO 2:30PM
There is NO COST to attend this event, but PRE-REGISTRATION is required!
TO REGISTER SEND EMAIL TO: email@example.com
Help us get the word out! Post the attached flyer. Send out an email broadcast or communication to your members, colleagues, and others.
Remember these events are hands-on on-farm learning opportunities, so always wear comfortable shoes and clothing!
DIRECTIONS TO MISSISSIPPI BAND OF CHOCTAW INDIANS – FARM I
Farm I is located at 7810 County Line Road, Carthage, Mississippi, between Carthage and Kosciusko. From North: Take Hwy 35 South from Kosciusko to Dossville (5-6 miles). Take a left onto County Line Road, just past Dossville sign. Turn right into first gravel drive about 1/4 mile off of Hwy 35. From South: Take Hwy 35 North from Carthage to Dossville (12-14 miles). Take a right onto County Line Road, just past Dossville sign. Turn right into first gravel drive about 1/4 mile off of Hwy 35. Contact: Daphne Snow, General Manager of Choctaw Fresh Produce 601-575-9089 for help with directions. TO REGISTER EMAIL: firstname.lastname@example.org. (Pre-registration is required)
HIGHLY PROFITABLE AND SUSTAINABLE: ON 1-ACRE **)
We MUST do more to support local farmers and growers, especially small farmers. Toward that end, we introduced a new plan showing how to become highly profitable and sustainable on a small family farm. The plan highlights some basic agricultural principles/practices; practical budget/financial options; and realistic revenue projections. YES, YOU CAN HAVE A GOOD QUALITY OF LIFE ON 1-ACRE OF LAND, WHILE BEING SUSTAINABLE! The plan is attached. Let us know if you would like someone to speak to your group or if you would like to demonstrate these practices on your farm.
RESOURCES, VENDORS AND SUPPLIERS (UPDATED **)
Farmers and growers need more practical information, in addition to that shared at our monthly field days. So, we highly recommend the resources, vendors, and suppliers listed in this attachment based on the quality of their products and services. This list includes reliable sources for seeds, tools, supplies, equipment, programs, etc. We also loan out some DVD’s and books (FREE). TWO NEW COMPANIES HAVE BEEN ADDED TO THE LIST!
“Being sustainable, as farmers and in life, means we’re environmentally sound, financially viable, and socially responsible. If we are destroying the environment, can’t make any money, or don’t care about the world around us – we can never be truly sustainable”.