Organic & Hoophouse Training
More Upcoming Southern SAWG Trainings
Organic and
Hoophouse Training


November 7-8, 2011 Ridgeland, SC Blue Heron Learning Center - Jasper County
November 9-10, 2011 Easley, SC Greenbrier Farms - Pickens County


Southern SAWG in partnership with the Carolina Farm Stewardship Association and the Southern Region Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education Program/USDA, and in conjunction with South Carolina NRCS will offer a special 2 day training in Organic Horticulture and High Tunnels for NRCS, Extension, FSA, State Agriculture Department and other institutional and organizational personnel serving farmers interested in organic and high tunnel production. Farmers who themselves serve as trainers or mentors to other farmers or to technical service professionals are also invited to attend.

As any new information about these training events becomes available it will be posted at Southern SAWG's "Upcoming Events"web page.

The training will be led by practitioners who speak from personal experience with commercial organic and high tunnel farm enterprises. The event will include both classroom and on-farm instruction, and will include discussion of how NRCS cost share and technical assistance can be profitably applied in organic and high tunnel production operations. This training is intended to help agriculture professionals better serve farmers, especially farmers with or considering NRCS EQIP Organic Initiative or Hoophouse cost-share applications.

Farmers, if you think this training would be helpful for service providers that you work with please share this information with them.

There is no charge for this training for qualifying agricultural professionals, but registration is required. Lunch will be provided on both days.

Register online or phone Southern SAWG at (479) 251-8310.

Topics to be covered include

• High tunnel siting, construction, and material/design options
• Critical factors for profitable high-tunnel/hoop house production
• Experiences with NRCS high-tunnel cost-share
• Principles of organic and natural farming systems, and how the principles are implemented
• Building soil health and fertility in an organic system
• Crop diversity and crop rotation as management strategies
• Weed, pest and disease management
• Marketing and maintaining economic viability
• Program outreach to new audiences using a grassroots approach


Dr. Mark Schonbeck, an independent consultant in sustainable agriculture from Floyd County, VA has been conducting organic related research and developing organic resources in cooperation with land-grants, nongovernmental agencies and farmers for 22 years.

Mark Cain has been operating a successful diversified organic farm enterprise in Arkansas for over 20 years. Mark produces mixed vegetables, culinary herbs, blueberries, and specialty cut flowers for the popular Fayetteville Farmers Market and CSA distribution.

Andrew Williams is a retired NRCS conservationist from Alabama with 35 years of experience as a soil conservationist, district conservationist, RC&D, and state outreach coordinator.

Donald Brant, a farmer at Brandt Family Farm in Jasper County, will share his farm and experience on November 8.

Chad Bishop, a farmer at Greenbrier Farms in Pickens County, will share his farm and experience on November 10.

Register online or phone Southern SAWG at (479) 251-8310.

November 7-8, 2011
November 9-10, 2011

Blue Heron Learning Center
321 Bailey Lane, Ridgeland, SC 29936
(843) 726-7611

Greenbrier Farms
772 Hester Store Road, Easley, SC 29640
(864) 855-9782