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Small Farms

Fruit and vegetable updates for local producers




10:45 Growing Organic Agriculture: The Farmer–Consumer Connection. Mark Keating, Wheel of Life Consulting, Belvidere, NJ

11:45 Lunch in the Trade Show

1:30 Beyond the Beginning: Veteran Farmer Idea Exchange.

Meet some of the best teachers–other farmers like you. Connect immediately with similar farmers in one of five discussion groups: fruits, vegetables, grains/row crops, livestock, and diversified production. Each group will have veteran producers willing to share their experiences, but we hope that others will jump into the discussion as well. Stay in the same group the entire time, or move around among groups. This exchange of ideas will help you solve a nagging problem, think about how to expand, or otherwise improve your operation


9:00 Effective Equipment for the Small-Scale Organic Vegetable Grower. Hans Bishop, PrairiErth Farm, Atlanta, IL

9:45 Production Practices for Organic Field Crops. Dave Campbell, Lily Lake Organic Farm, Maple Park, IL

10:30 Advanced Organic Vegetable Production. Grant McCarty, University of Illinois Extension

11:15 Non-Chemical Weed Management for Vegetable Growers. Matt DeJong, DeJong Brothers Farm, Lansing, IL; Zack Grant and Connie Echaiz, University of Illinois

11:45 Lunch in the Trade Show

1:30 Organic Strawberry Production: Crop Management, Weed Control, and Marketing. Matthew Peterson, Plow Creek Farm, Tiskilwa, IL

2:10 Organic Tree Fruit: Challenges and Their Solutions for Beginning Growers in the First Several Years. Anton Ptak, Mary Dirty Face Farm, Menomomie, WI

2:50 Ribes: The Nitty Gritty on Producing Currants and Gooseberries for Fresh Market and Restaurant Sales. Anton Ptak, Mary Dirty Face Farm, Menomomie, WI

Organic II

Soil & Fertility

9:00 Alleviating Soil Compaction With Cover Crops on Organic Farms: A Participatory Experience. Rachel Welch andMaria Villamil, University of Illinois; Allen Williams, Williams Farms, Cerro Gordo, IL

9:45 Illinois Soil Quality Initiative III: Stewardship on Organic, Conventional and Conservation Till Grain Farms. Michelle Wander and Carmen Ugarte, University of Illinois

10:30 Permaculture Principles and Methods for Farmers: An Introduction. Wayne Weisman, The Permaculture Project LLC, Carbondale, IL

11:45 Lunch in the Trade Show

Poultry & Livestock

1:30 Nutrition + Genetics + Management = Gourmet Grassfed Beef. Kendall Shrock, Circle K (Devons) Farms, Tampico, IL; and Gearld Fry, Bovine Engineering and Consulting, Rosebud, AK

2:10 Chickens on Pasture–10 Years of Lessons Learned. Brian Poeppel, Broad Branch Farm, Wyoming, IL

2:50 Integrating Cover Crops in Crop and Livestock Systems. Dave Bishop, PrairiErth Farm, Atlanta, IL

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