Have you ever wanted to expand your small business to include Christmas Trees, goji berries, or ginger? Your fields and gardens may be snowed over, but it is the perfect time to develop your skills in small farming and local food production. University of Illinois Extension will once again be hosting the Small Farms Winter Webinar Series -- featuring practical lunch-hour presentations on small farm enterprises and strategies you can use.

Tune in right from your desk or laptop every Thursday at noon from Jan. 18, 2018, through March 29, 2018. The Small Farms Winter Webinar Series has been around since 2011. Starting with the 2015 series, past webinars are available on our YouTube page at http://bit.ly/ILLocalFoodsYouTube .

An Extension Educator or campus faculty member will present each webinar, timed to fit within your lunch hour, and recorded for future viewing if you have to miss the live session on the team’s You-Tube channel mentioned above.

It’s easy and free to register for the Small Farms Winter Webinars. Sign up for as many as you want at http://go.aces.illinois.edu/winterwebinars2018 . We will send you log-on instructions and information about accessing the archived recording.

If you do not have broadband internet capable of streaming video, the winter webinar series will also be available for viewing at the University of Illinois Extension office in Charleston. Please call the office at 217-345-7034 if you plan to participate in this manner.

The 2018 webinar schedule includes:

  • Jan. 18 - Less Common Fruit Bearing Plants, Elizabeth Wahle, University of Illinois Extension Commercial Ag Educator
  • Jan. 25 - Updated High Tunnel Concepts, Zack Grant, University of Illinois Extension Local Food Systems and Small Farms Educator
  • Feb. 1 - Introduction to Certified Organic Production, Grant McCarty, University of Illinois Extension Local Food Systems and Small Farms Educator
  • Feb. 8 - Christmas Tree Production and Business Considerations, Dave Shiley, University of Illinois Extension Local Food Systems and Small Farms Educator
  • Feb. 15 - An Update on the Grand Prairie Grain Guild: Developing Staple Crop Varieties and Associated Regional Food Grade Markets, Bill Davison, University of Illinois Extension Local Food Systems and Small Farms Educator
  • Feb. 22 - Creating Community Food Production Systems, Laurie George, University of Illinois Extension Local Food Systems and Small Farms Educator
  • Mar. 1 - Heavy metals in soils: identifying and acting on contamination, Dr. Andrew Margenot, University of Illinois Department of Crop Sciences, College of ACES
  • Mar. 8 - Native Pollinators on your Farm, Doug Gucker, University of Illinois Extension Local Food Systems and Small Farms Educator
  • Mar. 15 – Small Acres Pastured Poultry, James Theuri, University of Illinois Extension Local Food Systems and Small Farms Educator
  • Mar. 22 - Growing Ginger, Turmeric, and Other Unique Crops, Chris Enroth, University of Illinois Extension Horticulture Educator
  • Mar. 29 - Tips for Modifying and Building Sprayers for Specialty Crops, Nathan Johanning, University of Illinois Extension Local Food Systems and Small Farms Educator

For more information on University of Illinois Extension programming in Coles, Cumberland, Douglas, Moultrie and Shelby counties, visit our website at http://web.extension.illinois.edu/ccdms/index.html or call us at 217-345-7034.

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