Farminar Archive

Browse archived farminars and listen for free.

Practical Farmers of Iowa offers farminars at no cost to participants. These 90-minute, online seminars feature a wide variety of farming topics with farmers as the experts. Broadcast over the Internet, farminars are typically held Tuesdays from 7–8:30 p.m. CST from November to March. We record these sessions and make them available for free so you can keep learning year-round. Check out all recorded sessions below.

DateTitleDescriptionMember PrioritiesPeopleTags
02/13/18Using Natives to Create Pollinator Habitat: A …Pollinators such as bees, butterflies, and insects are critical to crop production and play a crucial role in our nation’s food supply. This farminar will provide a guide to restoring native prairie by offering recommendations for research & planning, site preparation, planting, and management. This information is applicable if you’re restoring many acres or considering a backyard project. Jessi and Dennis from Shooting Star Native Seeds will talk about how to choose a seed mix, how to eliminate weeds before you plant, what equipment is needed, and the management practices needed for continued growth of your pollinator habitat.H ·
02/06/18Red Clover: Still the “Cadillac” of Cover …In many regions of North America, red clover has a long history of use as an underseeded cover crop in small grain systems. While enthusiasm for cover crops is increasing, red clover use is in decline due to perceptions that other cover crop options are superior, and also due to concerns of poor red clover stand establishment. Research data, however consistently demonstrates that red clover is still the preferred cover crop for soil health, rotation effect, and nitrogen contribution. When used in combination with winter wheat in a corn/soybean system, the impact on soil health and economics is profound. Based on 20+ years of red clover experience, Dr. Deen will describe how to estimate yield and nitrogen benefits of red clover and will discuss recent research aimed at ensuring red clover stand uniformity when underseeded to either small grains or corn.CCSG
01/30/18Beginning Farmer Barriers and StrategiesBeginning farmers face a whole range of barriers to overcome when starting a successful farm business. Accessing startup capital and land, building a market, finding a balance between farm work and family life, and overcoming production challenges are among the many issues beginners have to navigate. Beginning vegetable farmer Jenny Quiner of Dogpatch Urban Gardens, and beginning livestock farmers Bill and Stacey Borrenpohl will discuss the challenges they’ve faced as well as their strategies for overcoming them.BFHL ·
01/16/18Dive into Growing Woodies as Cut FlowersAt Blue Sky Flower Farm near Elko-New Market, MN, Jon and Rachael Ackerman specialize in growing standard and unique varieties of woody ornamental plants. The Ackerman’s launched their farm in 2010 and grow approximately 2 acres of cut flowers and woodies for wholesale to local garden centers, landscape companies, florists & at the Twin Cities Flower Exchange (a local, wholesale flower market). Hear tips and techniques from Rachael on how to add woodies to your farm including information on propagation, varieties, growing, challenges, investment, social media and more.H
01/09/18Using Permaculture Design and Farming SoloWant to learn about farming small, as a solo operator? Using permaculture principles on a farm scale? Farming in the winter? Meet Clare Hintz, the owner of Elsewhere Farm in Herbster, WI! She’ll highlight the features of her small, diversified farm that make it a successful business, a thriving ecology, and creative work.
08/01/17Cover Crop Economics: Thoughts and DataCC · ·
04/11/17Using Sustainability Metrics to Capture Changes …FCSGRD
03/20/17Challenges and Opportunities with Hazelnuts ·
03/15/17Investor and Farmer PartnershipsBFFCL ·
03/13/17Pest and Disease Management for Organic Apple …H
03/08/17Variety Selection for Vegetable ProductionH
03/01/17Diversifying Your Crop Rotation With Small GrainsLSG
02/23/17More Opportunities for Cover CropsCC ·
02/15/17Harvesting, Storing and Feeding Rye to CattleCCL · · ·
02/08/17Grassfed Meat Production Using Multi-Species …L
02/01/17Effective Mentor RelationshipsBFFCHLLF · ·
01/27/17Risk Management for a Diversified FarmH ·
01/18/17Mobile Poultry Processing in IowaL ·
12/21/16Farm-Life Balance for CSA FarmersBFH ·
12/15/16Getting More from Cover CropsCCRD ·
12/07/16Graze and Bale: Cover Crops as ForageCC ·
11/30/16Tax Preparation for Your FarmCCBFFCHL · · ·
11/23/16Conservation Stewardship Program: Major Changes … · · · ·
11/17/16Growing in High Tunnels: The Good, the Bad and …After more than 10 years of high tunnel production, Jill Beebout of Blue Gate Farm has made mistakes, celebrated successes and collected lots of data. Jill will share her experiences, the numbers, and her best and worst high tunnel ideas – or as she says, “the good, the bad and the ugly.”BFH
03/09/16Neonicotinoid Seed Treatments: Are They Necessary?Dick Sloan farms near Rowley in northeastern Iowa. For the past two years, he has conducted on-farm research on soybeans grown from neonicotinoid-treated and untreated seeds, and found no differences in yield. As a result, he has been able to cut input costs on his farm. Matt O’Neal, research entomologist at Iowa State University, will discuss recent research on the possible negative impacts of neonicotinoids, along with management alternatives for growers.FC · · · ·
03/02/16Important Farm Financials: How to Get StartedBF ·
02/24/16Walk-in Cooler Considerations and ConstructionBFH · · ·
02/17/16Seed Starting 101: Two ExamplesBFH · · · ·
02/10/16Herbicide Restriction Considerations for Using …CCFCL · · · · ·
02/03/16Moveable High Tunnels: Pros and ConsBFH
01/26/16Benefits of a Small Grain in Organic Rotations …FCSG ·
01/20/16What a Small Grain Crop Can Afford You: Diverse …CCFCL · ·
01/13/16Nuts and Bolts of Small Grains ProductionFCSG
12/16/15A Simple Recordkeeping System for Fruit and …he Hartmann’s completed their 10th growing season as a certified organic vegetable farm in 2014. They have been able to create a stable, well-recognized farm allowing them to meet their financial and lifestyle goals. During this farminar, Rick will share how he and Stacy manage product and financial recordkeeping, and how this data impacts the decisions they make for their farm and family. Rick will work with beginning farmer Daniel Heldt to advise him on starting a recordkeeping system for his operation.BFH ·
12/09/15Alternatives to Cereal Rye and the Benefits of …CCL ·
12/02/15The Haney Soil Test and Nutrient Turnover Farmers today can be bombarded with soil test results, but without proper context or interpretation, a plan to act on these results is difficult to decide upon. The Haney Test takes a novel approach to determine fertilizer recommendations while considering soil microbial activity and carbon and nitrogen concentration. Soil microbial ecologist Sarah Hargreaves will address how soil microbial activity translates into nutrient turnover and what this means for a farmer. Farmer Paul Ackley will explain how he’s been using the Haney Test results to reduce his fertilizer rates and maintain crop yields.FC · · · · ·
11/25/15Grazing Management for Grass-Finishing CattleThe growth of the grass-fed meat sector is driven by positive eating experiences. To ensure satisfied consumers, it’s critical for cattle graziers to have a solid understanding of grass-finishing. Ryan and Kristine Jepsen, of Dorchester, Iowa, will discuss the importance of meeting the nutritional needs of cattle at each stage of life and knowing your cost of gain. Daniel Sheetz, a row crop and beef cattle producer in Toledo, Iowa, is transitioning his operation to organic and grass-fed. He has seeded 60 acres of new pasture and will be implementing a grazing plan in the spring. Daniel will ask Ryan and Kristine questions about grass-based beef production.BFL · · · · · ·
11/19/15Mindset and Method of Cover Crops in Vegetable …Cover crops can do great things for soil health, but who has the time or money to use them? Tom Ruggieri and Mark Quee do! During this farminar, these two vegetable farmers will share how they integrate cover crops into their production planning and farm goals, and discuss species, equipment, establishment and termination.CCBFH ·
11/10/15Getting Started with Greenhouse ProductionLee Matteson and Rose Schick are building their business around winter greens and extended season production using four high tunnels near Nevada, Iowa. Though they started with a solid foundation in greenhouse production, there was plenty to learn along the way. During this farminar Lee and Rose will discuss starting their farm, some misconceptions they had and how others might try things differently. They will also discuss greenhouse and site selection, favorite crops, markets, financial decision-making and share photos of their greenhouse operation.BFH ·
10/07/15Cover Crop Webinar Series with SARE and ASAFollow this link to see the spring 2014 webinar series sponsored by SARE and produced by the American Society of Agronomy.CCFCL · · · · ·
07/28/15The Economics of Cover CropsCC · · · ·
06/19/15Cover Crops for IowaJoin Sarah Carlson, the Midwest Cover Crop Research Coordinator at PFI, for a cover crop webinar hosted by Iowa Learning Farms. She shared the research results from six finished projects and mentioned the design of a new project.CC
04/01/15Food Safety Modernization Act: Implications for …Hear from Sophia Kruszewski, a policy expert at the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition, about what the Food Safety Modernization Act is and what its implementation will mean for farmers. Organic farmer and farm consultant Chris Blanchard discusses details about who it will impact and how to comply with the new rules and regulations.BFHP ·
03/26/15Pesticide Drift: Prevention and Response Operating an organic farm in Iowa can entail numerous challenges, not the least of which is pesticide drift. Andy and Melissa Dunham have experienced two episodes of spray drift at Grinnell Heritage Farm, a certified organic vegetable, hay and livestock farm they operate near Grinnell, Iowa. In this farminar they share the processes they have gone through to find out who is accountable and how to receive compensation for damages, as well as their strategies for preventing it from happening again.BFH · ·
03/18/15Head-to-Head: Comparing Two Insurance Options …Are you a fruit or vegetable farmer who’s been waiting for insurance options that might work for you? Two promising options are available in 2015: Non-Insured Disaster Assistance Program (NAP) and Whole Farm Revenue Protection (WFRP).NAP, offered by Farm Services Agency (FSA), now provides 100 percent crop loss payback, with choices of crop loss threshold – a major improvement of past years. WFRP, offered by USDA Risk Management Agency (RMA), is a new insurance program. Listen in as Kevin McClure of FSA and Mark Shilts of RMA provide an overview of the two insurance options, and then work through costs and benefits of a sample farm provided by Emma Johnson of Buffalo Ridge Orchard.FCHL · · · · · ·
03/11/15Meat PricingAre you a livestock farmer who has struggled with the best way to price your meat so it’s fair to you and your customers? This farminar is for you: Tune in and learn how to fairly price your meat cuts for direct or wholesale markets. Experienced livestock farmer Tom Cory shares his insights and perspective as a producer, and Bobbie Gustafson of Story City Locker discusses the factors she considers when making pricing decisions.BFLLF · · ·
03/09/15Marketing for Your Small Produce OperationAre you looking for a unique way to put your goats to work? This farminar will focus on contracts, fencing and water systems needed for custom grazing land that a farmer doesn’t own. Expert grazier Lani Malmberg will draw on her 25-plus years of experience taking her goats to places in need of weed management, brush control, re-seeding, erosion or flood control, and restoration. Iowa farmer Doug Bartels will join Lani, and discuss his experience with custom-grazing goats in Iowa.BFHLF · · · · ·
02/25/15Custom Grazing with GoatsAre you looking for a unique way to put your goats to work? This farminar will focus on contracts, fencing and water systems needed for custom grazing land that a farmer doesn’t own. Expert grazier Lani Malmberg will draw on her 25-plus years of experience taking her goats to places in need of weed management, brush control, re-seeding, erosion or flood control, and restoration. Iowa farmer Doug Bartels will join Lani, and discuss his experience with custom-grazing goats in Iowa.BFL · · · · · ·
02/18/15Cereal Rye: Stand Evaluation and Seed SelectionLearn management tactics critical to success with cereal rye. Greg Roth of Penn State University will discuss his experiences and research with rye, including new hybrid rye originally developed in Europe that is yielding well in U.S. trials. Iowa farmer Tim Sieren will share some of his experiences – both good and bad – growing cereal rye for seed. He will also discuss some of the equipment he uses for seeding, harvesting, storage and seed cleaning.CCFCSG · · ·
02/11/15Oats for Iowa: Variety Selection and Agronomic …Iowa farmers have long grown oats for feed and food markets. Although oat acres have decreased dramatically since the 1960s, reduced corn and soybean prices have farmers looking to put oats back into the rotation because of their economic competitiveness. But what varieties and production methods are best for oats in 2015? Learn more about what oat varieties to select – including new varieties that are available – improved production methods, and agronomic decisions to ensure the best yields and quality.FCSG · · ·
02/05/15Setting Up Fall and Spring Small Grain …Join experienced farmer Bill Frederick and beginning farmer Dustin Farnsworth as they share their experiences with growing small grains as part of the rotation on their Iowa farms. Small grains researcher David Weisberger will then share insights he gained from talking with organic oat producers across the state. This farminar will focus on the practical aspects of successful small grains: field preparation, plant populations and planter settings, stand assessment and harvest tactics.CCBFFCSG · · · ·
01/28/15Customer Retention for CSAsUsing data from research conducted with CSA customers, tune in to hear 10 reasons why people stay with their CSA and 10 reasons why they leave. Expert Pat Mulvey will talk about how to keep your customers happy, and WabiSabi Farm’s Ben Saunders will talk about retention successes and struggles with his CSA in Granger, Iowa.BFH · ·
01/21/15Scale and Profitability: The Right Fit for Two …Join seasoned CSA farmers Dan Guenthner and Mike Racette from Wisconsin to hear about the process of piecing together the infrastructure needed for a viable small farming operation. Both Dan and Mike have over 20 years of experience running a CSA, and will discuss the chronology their farms went through to get where they are today.BFH · ·
01/13/15Whole Farm Revenue ProtectionWhole Farm Revenue Protection (WFRP) is a new type of crop insurance product being piloted by the USDA Risk Management Agency. Available to Iowa producers for the first time in 2015, WFRP will provide higher levels of coverage and lower premium costs than the previous whole farm crop insurance products. Agricultural economist Jeff Schahczenski, with the National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT), will review WFRP, outlining its benefits and its more challenging aspects, and beginning farmer Tony Thompson will provide farmer questions and insights.FCHLP · ·
12/30/14Direct-Marketing Grain-Finished BeefShanen and Beau Ebersole, of Ebersole Cattle Co., will share their expertise raising grain-finished beef cattle with no hormones or antibiotics. Learn about issues from production to marketing methods, then listen in as the Ebersoles answer beginning farmer Dave Hill’s questions on starting up this type of enterprise.BFL · · · ·
12/18/14Haney & PLFA Soil Tests: What, How? Why?Do you wonder how soil tests can be used to help improve your soil management? Learn the basics of two increasingly popular tests – the Haney and phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) soil tests – from soil microbiologist Lance Gunderson, including how the results are determined and how to interpret these results. Farmer and grazier Fred Abels will then describe how he’s used the Haney test on his farm to inform his management. They will both discuss the results of tests taken on Fred’s farm.FCH · · · · ·
12/12/14To Bee- or Not to Bee-Keep: What are Your Options?This farminar is for farmers who like the idea of having beehives on their property, but aren’t sure if they are ready or willing to manage their own hives. Adam Ebert of Ebert Honey Company will talk about what it takes to keep your own bees, then discuss with Susan Yario and Cheryl Daman of Heartfelt Heirloom Farm their beehive-hosting arrangement. Adam will also discuss farmer questions and concerns, how to find a beekeeper in your area, and what to expect from and ask of your tenant beekeeper.H · · · · ·
12/02/14Getting Started in Dairy FarmingListen in as two beginning farmers, Kevin Dietzel and John Gilbert, share their experiences starting a dairy farm. Learn about the land base needed, market opportunities and demand, capital investments, barriers along the way and more.BFL ·
11/25/14Extending the Rotation Beyond Corn and BeansCCBFFCSG · ·
11/18/14Cut Flower ProductionLynn Byczynski, editor of “Growing for Market” and author of “The Flower Farmer,” will share tips and strategies for organically growing and marketing cut flowers. Lynn will also answer questions posed by beginning flower farmers.BFH · ·
11/11/14Business-Planning with Finances in MindThis farminar will focus on the financial sections of your business plan. Presenters will go through worksheets from the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education book “Building a Sustainable Business.” Janna Feldman, a dairy farmer and participant in Practical Farmers’ Savings Incentive Program, will share examples from her worksheets and business plan. Jim Patton, retired banker and former ISU extension director, will share advice on writing a financial plan.BFHL
06/20/14Successfully Aerially Seeding Cover CropsExplore strategies for effective aerial seeding of cover crops - pilots and a cover crop consultant discuss what works for them, including seed selection, equipment needs, and timing of application. This Farminar is geared towards pilots but there is something for anyone interested in aerial seeding of cover crops.CCBF ·
03/11/14Land Access – Leases to Support Conservation …Explore legal issues pertinent to beginning farmers, including farm succession, the transition of land and assets to the next generation, custom grazing legal questions and writing farm leases.BFL · · · · · ·
03/04/14Budgeting for Success: Adding a New Generation …Want to ensure you stay profitable on a cash grain and livestock farm? Learn when, why and how to do farm budgets from a farm that has been successful for generations – and is in the process of adding a new generation to the family farm business.BFFCL · · · ·
02/25/14Pesticide Drift: Response and CompensationConsider this scenario: your farm is subjected to chemical drift from a neighbor's application to their property adjacent to your land. What steps do you follow once this happens? Learn how an organic vegetable and livestock farm has responded (and continues responding) to pesticide drift.BFHL · · · · ·
02/18/14Making Niche Pork Work for You at Any ScaleIowa farmers have fattened hogs on abundant grain from their farms for generations, and opportunities abound for direct-to-consumer and wholesale niche pork. Hear how other farmers have made niche pork work for them, explore how you can get started and learn about new growth opportunities in niche pork production.BFFCL · · · · ·
02/11/14Growing Better Potatoes and Carrots on a Few AcresLearn production techniques to help you achieve success growing organic potatoes and carrots at the 1- to 4-acre scale.BFH · · · ·
02/04/14Outwitting Weed Resistance on a Cash Grain FarmResistance is futile… when farmers are armed with weed ecology knowledge, small grains, steel and fresh weed management ideas. Learn about the latest weed resistance research, and practical strategies you can use to stay a step ahead.BFFC · · · ·
01/14/14Planning Your Diverse Crop and Livestock Farm …Hear farmers share their experiences creating and using the essential farm business plan, and learn to use FINPACK, software that can help crunch the numbers.BFFCL ·
12/10/13Building Relationships, Building CustomersRelationship-building can be a powerful marketing tool. Hear from two farms of different scales about how they focus on building relationships with customers to be successful.BFHL · · ·
12/03/13Revenue Projections and Profit Potential of …Listen in as an experienced livestock farmer shares his insight with beginning graziers.BFL · · · · ·
11/19/13Transplant Production Improvement ConsiderationsExplore systems to keep your transplants happy (even in the heat of summer) so they are ready to grow in top condition.BFH · ·
11/12/13Efficient Crop Marketing and Distribution of …Ready to explore a new distribution business to help increase efficiency and amount of local food available in nearby communities? Learn from an established local food distributor now entering its seventh year, hear an Iowa beginning farmer’s vision for her food distribution company, and then listen as the two discuss considerations when creating a local food delivery business.BFHLF · · ·
11/05/13Crop Insurance by Written Agreement for Apple …Learn the timelines to report and apply for insurance, and the recordkeeping and other requirements to gain crop loss protection.BFH · · · ·
09/19/13Managing cover cropsMany farmers planted cover crops on prevented planting acres this season and now have questions about managing those acres this fall and winter. Other farmers are considering planting cover crops for the first time this fall and have questions about species selection, timing, spring management and more.CCBFFC · · ·
06/14/13Cover crop options for prevented planting acres …This spring has presented challenging conditions for farmers hoping to plant corn and soybeans in Iowa and across much of the Midwest. Also, cover crops have become a popular choice for farmers looking to enhance soil health, improve soil structure, prevent erosion and reduce nitrogen and phosphorus loss on their farms. But many questions remain about which cover crop varieties to select and the practical management questions farmers must consider for all scenarios. Practical Farmers of Iowa along with the Agribusiness Association of Iowa/Iowa Certified Crop Advisers, Natural Resources Conservation Service and the Iowa Department of Ag and Land Stewardship invite you to learn and ask questions about how cover crops can successfully fit into prevented planting acres this year.CCBFFCL · · · · · ·
04/02/13How to Hire Farm Laborers, By the BooksHave you thought about hiring farm employees but feel confused or unsure where to start? This farminar is for you.Learn from two farmers about their experiences hiring farm laborers across the spectrum, from H-2A visa holders and migrant seasonal contractor crews, to regular part-time workers and full-time employees. Listen in as the farmers ask questions of experts from each regulatory agency that Iowa farmers will need to work with in order to be legally compliant farm employers.BFFCHL · · · · ·
03/26/13Network with other PFI Beginning Farmer …Beginners, learn how to be an excellent employee and learn the most on the job this summer. Farmer employers, hear how farmers make time for a better learning experience for employees.BFH · ·
03/19/13Cover Crop Decision-Making ToolsJust getting started with cover crops or want to hone your cover crop selections? Learn more about two online tools, the SmartMix (cover crop) Calculator, developed by Green Cover Seed of Bladen, NE and the Cover Crop Selector Tool developed by the Iowa Cover Crop Working Group in Ames, IA. Both resources are available online for farmers and landowners to improve their cover crop decision-making.CCBFFC · ·
02/26/13Vegetable Irrigation Basics for Beginning FarmersNew to irrigation? Get the basics you need to build a system to more efficiently water your vegetable crops in the field this summer.BFH
02/19/13Selecting the Right Genetics for a …Three graziers share their path to find animals that work on grass. Hear what traits to select for in your beef cowherd and choose superior genetics for finishing on grass.BFL · · · ·
02/12/13Feed Alternatives to Corn and SoybeansFeeding livestock and cringing at the high prices of feed corn and soybean meal? Find out how to add alternate grains to your ration to cut costs.BFL · ·
02/05/13Considerations for Year-Round Employment for …Do you plan to grow your farm to offer year-round employment to staff? Learn practical ways to build your farm's capacity to provide work and pay for employees all year.BFH ·
01/29/13Explore the Profit Potential of High TunnelsLearn how to harvest not just great winter greens, but profits as well from your season-extending structure.BFH · ·
01/24/13Specialty Crop Insurance: One Farmer’s …Have you considered insuring for your fresh produce farm this summer? Hear a farmer's take on what is available as well as his vision for a more suitable insurance program for fruit and vegetable farms.BFH
01/22/13Cover Crop Basics for Corn and SoybeansLearn from farmers with experience using cover crops in conventional and organic systems.CCBFFC ·
01/15/13Selecting Corn Hybrids and Soybean VarietiesGain a diverse view of the nuts and bolts of genetic selection and decision-making for corn and soybean seeds. Farmers and a seed production expert will cover genetically-modified, non-GMO, open-pollinated and organic seeds.BFFC · · · ·
01/08/13Yeomans Plow and Keyline DesignGet to know the Yeomans Plow and Keyline Design and learn how subsoil plowing can improve your farm productivity, water holding capacity, and reduce compaction.BFL · ·
12/18/12Pricing and marketing produce at farm stands …Learn how to price and better market your produce to increase retail and wholesale revenue.BFH ·
12/11/12Beginning a crop and livestock farm: EquipmentAre you wondering if you should buy that planter for your crops or the ripper for primary tillage? Hear perspectives from farmers about what equipment a beginner should own to make profits on a beginning farm.BFFCL · · ·
12/04/12Poultry enterprise budgets: Know your expenses …Learn how to price your poultry to ensure profits return to your farm.BFL · · · ·
11/27/12Drought recovery grazing: Ideas to get through …Are you keeping livestock through the drought? Hear from an experienced farmer on how to get through the winter and plan for next year. Learn how to build resilient soils with managed grazing and more.BFL · · ·
11/20/12Production in high tunnels: Salad greens, …Hear how to grow higher quality salad greens and microgreens in a season-extending high tunnel.BFH · · ·
11/13/12Profitable direct-to-consumer meat and dairy …Learn more strategies to market your own meats and dairy products directly to families in your community.BFL ·
11/06/12Farmers as employers: legal responsibilitiesLearn farmers' legal responsibilities for hiring farm employees. Two farmers will share their farm labor employment scenarios and ask questions of a Labor Department director, who will also summarize Iowa farm labor laws.BFFCHL · ·
03/13/12Long-Term Fertility Management, Adding …High costs can quickly eat up all your profits. Learn how livestock management and longer rotations can increase your profitability while nurturing healthy soils, plants and animals on your farm.BFFCL · ·
03/06/12Determining Whether Your Produce Farm Will …Want to grow healthy food for your local community and make a profit doing so? Learn how to plan for profit by using financial record-keeping to help guide your farm's development of production systems and markets.BFH ·
02/21/12Integrate Small Grains into Large Grain Row …Farmers who attend this session will learn how adding alternative crops can reduce input costs and pest pressure while helping them raise more profitable and healthy livestock.BFFCL · ·
02/07/12Improve your Farmer’s Market SalesComing home from market with only $50 and a vehicle full of product can be discouraging. Participants will learn how to calculate the costs of attending farmer's markets, how to set a farmer's market income goal and strategies to reach that goal and achieve a profit that's worthy of the effort.BFHL · ·
01/31/12Profitable Recordkeeping: Simple Strategies for …Designed with farm profitability in mind, this farminar will focus on how to track expenses and income, and collect data that can help farmers make informed business decisions.BFL · · ·
01/24/12Insect Pest Management in Organic Vegetable …Participants will learn organic-approved strategies to mitigate the damage caused by flea beetles, cucumber beetles, thrips, European corn borer, cabbage root maggot, and aphids.BFH ·
01/17/12Scale and Profit: A Financial Snapshot of Three …This Farminar is targeted to those currently operating or thinking about starting a CSA. It will help CSA farmers determine the proper scale for their CSA based on their skill level, farm size and markets. The presenters will cover profit potential, legal structure, goals, vision and more!BFHL · · · ·
01/10/12Tax Preparation Training for FarmersFarmer Jerry Peckumn and CPA Leo Brooker talk about tax preparation basics and how to properly file farm business taxes. Topics covered will be guided by participant questions but will likely include business deductions, preparing tax documents for farm employees and recordkeeping tips to make tax season less stressful.BFFCL ·
12/27/11Grow better with High TunnelsHow do I get the best germination rates, design the best crop rotation, and earn the most with this season extending technology? Learn this and more as our guest from Michigan returns for his third annual farminar!BFH · ·
12/20/11Setting up a system of recordkeeping (and …Enterprise budgets help farmers know, in detail, what crops are making money for the farm. Learn how to setup a system of recordkeeping for your farm that will allow you to run these budgets and increase your profit.BFH ·
12/13/11Inexpensive, effective season extensionJoin in to find out how to extend your season without overextending your budget.BFH ·
11/29/11The marketing end of grass-fed beefFor many farmers, raising a good product comes first, but marketing it is equally important to create a viable business. This Farminar will cover techniques to successfully market your products.BFL · ·
11/22/11Pasture Seed Mixes for SuccessAttend this Farminar to learn which species of grasses and legumes to choose for your pastures and what seeding rates will establish a good stand.BFL ·
11/15/11How to better use Facebook to increase your …Do you want to begin or better your use of this free online social media tool? Attend to hear how to make Facebook an effective marketing agent for your farm.BFFCHL · ·
11/08/11Wholesale marketing with distributors, what …From food safety, to packaging, order, and delivery details, this farminar will discuss what it takes to successfully sell produce commercially to a wholesale market.BFFCHL · · ·
11/01/11Financing options for beginning farmersFrom bank loans, to USDA beginning farmer loans, to small business development loans, this farminar will overview the multitude of financing available for beginners.BFFCHL · ·
07/12/11Putting a Face on your FarmThis Summer Farminar on creating a brand for your farm features experienced marketing consultant and a beginning farmer. Create WOW Marketing president Andrew B. Clark, (self proclaimed “The Brand Chef”), is renowned for his more than 15 years of expertise in the branding and marketing communications arena.BFFCHL
04/05/11Keeping Good Records on a Vegetable FarmManaging records for a diverse vegetable operation can be tedious, but good records equal better production and profit potential.BFH
03/29/11Brokering TipsBrokering other farmers' products has great potential for expanding the profitability of your direct sales while helping other farmers expand their sales. Get some great advice from Nick Wallace on maintaining fairness, transparency and accountability when brokering products for other farmers.BFL · · ·
03/22/11Profitable Grass-based Livestock SystemsThirty-seven year veteran rancher and author Cody Holmes will teach Torray and Erin Wilson how to plan for a profitable grazing system, how to work smarter with animals, how to track sales and costs, and how to maintain profit with grass–based livestock.BFL · · · ·
03/15/11CSA Members as PartnersCommunity supported agriculture (CSA) fosters a relationship between farmers and their customers in which customers have a keen interest in their food system. By taking a partnership role, your member customers can help you increase productivity and profits. Hear from Elizabeth Henderson how to better integrate members into your CSA through core groups, work hours, distribution and farm events.BFH ·
03/08/11Building Wholesale RelationshipsFarmers, do you want to sell to wholesale outlets like groceries and restaurants? Grocers and chefs, are you interested in offering more local fare? Hear from both sides of the transaction to learn how to build strong wholesale relationships that are beneficial to both parties.BFL · ·
03/01/11Managing Farm LaborExperienced farmer Eric Franzenburg Pheasant Run Farm produces corn, soybeans, swine, meat poultry, flowers and high value herbs, near Van Horne, IA. This diverse farm requires the helping hands of many skilled laborers to succeed. Eric will be coaching beginner Morgan Hoenig, Mogo Organics, who began a CSA in 2009.BFH ·
02/22/11Organic Cucurbit ProductionGlenn Drowns with his wife Linda manage Sand Hill Preservation Center near Calamus, Iowa. They save farm genetic diversity with heirloom seeds, and poultry breeds. Glenn has been perfecting his techniques growing cucurbits organically for decades and is eager to share his knowledge. Ben Saunders has worked at Turtle Farm CSA near Granger, IA, for several years and is working to transition the farm to the next generation. With a university degree in Horticulture, Ben loves working with nature and educating on the farm.BFH ·
02/08/11Farm Fresh Eggs, Handlers Licenses and …Tai Johnson-Spratt's Foxhollow Poultry Farm sells pasture-ranged meat birds and eggs of specialty poultry breeds, including guinea fowl, duck, quail, chicken and turkey, to central Iowa customers. Theresa Gould is co-owner with her husband Robert of Cornucopia Family Farms, which is a new vegetable CSA located in the suburbs of Chicago. She and her family of 10 dream of having a bit of everything on their farm from veggies and eggs to a variety of animals.BFL · · ·
01/25/11Tomatoes Inside and OutAdam Montri, Outreach Specialist for Michigan State University, and operator of Ten Hens Farm, a year-round farm near Bath, MI, will share how to grow crops well in high tunnels, manage for pests, fertility and rotations. Sara Hanson a beginning farmer is putting the finishing touches on a hoophouse of her own in northern Iowa.BFH · ·
01/11/11Growing in High TunnelsAdam Montri, Outreach Specialist for Michigan State University, and operator of Ten Hens Farm, a year-round farm near Bath, MI, will share how to grow crops well in high tunnels, manage for pests, fertility and rotations. Sara Hanson a beginning farmer is putting the finishing touches on a hoophouse of her own in northern Iowa.BFH ·
12/28/10Value-Added Legal ConsiderationsSean Sullivan manages Juan O'Sullivan's Gourmet Salsa Co. and adds value to fresh produce by converting it to salsa for supermarket shelves. Beth Kemp is a beginning farmer who sells at the Ames farmers market as Jumping Bean Farm. Her products include fresh produce, breads, and she is planning on adding more value-added products like jams and jellies.BFH · · ·
12/14/10Financing Niche PorkJason Penner is a PFI member and beginning farmer with six years of experience producing niche pork in Minnesota. Jason will share his experiences, what worked for him and what he would have done differently, with beginners Devan Green and James Frantzen.BFL · · · · ·
11/30/10Setting Marketing GoalsGrass Run Farms is a small business started by PFI members Kristine and Ryan Jepsen. Their business has developed an increasingly specific mode of operation in the way they present themselves, brand the company, approach potential customers, and nurture relationships with existing customers. Says Kristine: In the meat business, the goal is to have a “home” (one or more customers) for all parts of the carcass you're selling; this determines where we focus our marketing energy.BFL · · ·
11/16/10Growing Greens BetterLarry Cleverley (Cleverley Farms) has been a horticulture farmer leader for more than a decade and has had success growing high quality greens. Joining Larry will be beginner Northeast Iowa horticulture farmer Glen Elsbernd (G it's Fresh).BFH · ·
11/02/10Cover Crops and Natural ManuresBuilding and maintaining soil health is essential to all farmers. Watch the first “Fishbowl” farminar of the season with eastern Iowa farmer Mark Quee (Scattergood Friends School Farm) and cover crop beginner Sally Gran (Wild Greens Farm). Learn how to manage cover crops, rotation recordkeeping, compost and manure applications.CCBFH ·
10/19/10Vegetable Storage in Existing FacilitiesFruit and vegetable farmers are growing their operations, but don't always have the financing to build new structures for all their needs. Join Denise O'Brien (Rolling Acres, Atlantic) and Melissa and Andrew Dunham (Grinnell Heritage Farm, Grinnell) to hear how they are storing their crops in existing facilities on the farm.BFH · · ·
06/01/10Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP)Get the lowdown on the new CSP from NRCS specialist Tom O'Conner and Plainfield, IA farmer Scott Weinburg. Includes questions and answers to help get your farm paid to do the right thing for the conservation of your land.BFFCLP ·
03/23/10Beginner Fishbowl – Grass-Fed BeefGrass-based livestock expert Doug Gunnink, Gunnink Forage Institute, and beginning farmers Dave Schmidt and Ethan Book talk about grass-fed beef production, setting up a system for the beginning grazier. Topics include what forage mixes, what breeds, pasture management, and tips on grass-finishing.BFL · · ·
03/16/10Beginner Fishbowl – Vegetable MarketingFarmer Susan Jutz, ZJ Farms, has produced vegetables on her farm near Solon, IA for years supplying a large weekly delivered share-based CSA market. Learn from her all the marketing techniques that she finds to be worthwhile. Beginning Farmer Chris Corbin will lead questions and share his input.BFH · ·
03/09/10Beginner Fishbowl – Vegetable ProductionFarmer Gary Guthrie, Growing Harmony Farm, the "Carrot King" of Iowa, has 12 years of experience producing vegetables on about 2 acres of intensively managed land in a five-year rotation near Nevada, IA. Come with your small-scale "high intensity" questions and learn the system of roto-tiller/hand tool vegetable production.BFH · ·
03/02/10Beginner Fishbowl – Pastured PoultryFarmer Tim Daley produces and markets poultry on pasture. He will share his extensive knowledge on this topic with beginning farmers Brian and Cheryl Ness. Join in with all your questions will be answered - ensuring you will not fowl-up your beginning operation.BFL · · ·
02/16/10Opportunities in AgroforestryTom Wahl will overview the potential for various high value tree crops suitable for Iowa's climate, including cultural practices, production, prices, markets, pests and diseases. Tree fruits to discuss include chestnut, persimmon, heartnut, paw paw, and more. Tom and his wife Kathy have grown high value tree crops since 1986 and also operate a small tree nursery which provides high quality varieties.BFH · · ·
02/09/10Grow Vegetables Year-RoundAdam Montri, Outreach Specialist for Michigan State University, and operator of Ten Hens Farm, a year round farm near Bath, MI, will share how crops are grown all year in Michigan. He will provide detailed crop schedules. High Tunnel Crop Schedule PDF's:
02/02/10Ramp up Vegetable ProductionMartin Stosiek and his wife Christa have farmed near Hillsdale, NY since 1988. Martin will provide a virtual tour of his Markristo Farm while discussing areas he has ramped up production, and how he made decisions to scale up in these areas. Martin will also discuss to which markets he sells his products and why.BFH
01/26/10Whole Farm Soil PlanningLearn how to use the online Web Soil Survey to access valuable soils information for your Farm. Learn the best place to put perennials, annuals, and building structures.BFFCHL ·
12/22/09Financing Your EnterpriseHow do you put together a financing plan for your new business? This webinar will describe some scenarios to consider and describe a basic strategy for assembling monetary assets for your new or expanding farm business. Utilizing resources available that might include loans or grants from government or private sources.BFFCHL
12/15/09Product, Placement, Pricing, Promotion, PeopleRick and Stacy Hartmann own and operate a small direct-market horticultural farm. Rick will take a version of the much used marketing formula, 'the five p's' - product, placement, promotion, product and people - and apply it to their operation.BFFCHL
12/08/09Enterprise Budgets – Pricing for ProfitPricing products that do not have an established market can be difficult. For example, let's assume you are producing tomatoes and notice the local grocery store is selling California tomatoes for $1.50 per lb. In addition, you have asked potential buyers and they say they are willing to pay 10-20% above grocery store prices. From this information you sell your tomatoes for $1.80 per pound. Were you profitable? The key to long-term success is the ability to sell products at a profit. To do this you need to know your costs.BFH · ·
12/01/09Fitting in the New EnterprisesWade Dooley, a young farmer from central Iowa, discusses his family farm story and the challenges and opportunities of "adding an enterprise" to an exisiting operation. Features 39 full-color photos of his farm life. Dave Baker from the Beginning Farmer Center also available with pointers and suggestions for ensuring a smooth enterprise addition.BFFCHL
11/24/09Which Enterprise? Market IDOne starting point with selecting an enterprise is to look to the marketplace to identify unmet opportunities. This session will start with an overview of a business plan outline, with particular emphasis on the marketing plan section.BFFCHL
11/17/09Estate PlanningLed by John Baker from the Beginning Farmer Center.BFFCHL
11/10/09Legal Issues in SuccessionPlanning the succession of a farm business and starting a farm business have a great deal in common. In both instances legal issues such as the selection of business entity, buy sell agreements, options, leases and other types of contract can and will have either a positive or negative impact on success. A basic knowledge of the legal "tools" can help those involved in either a succession or in starting a new business can help them to avoid costly mistakes. Led by John Baker from the Beginning Farmer Center.BFFCHL
11/03/09Whole Farm PlanningTips on how to manage the whole farm with the Critical Path Method. Led by Dave Baker from the Beginning Farmer Center.BFFCHL
03/10/09Ron Mardeson farm tourVirtual tour of a niche pork farm led by the farmers and Iowa State University extension specialist Dave StenderL · ·
03/03/09Tom Frantzen farm tourVirtual tour of a niche pork farm led by the farmers and Iowa State University extension specialist Dave StenderL · ·
02/27/09John Kenyon farm tourVirtual tour of a niche pork farm led by the farmers and Iowa State University extension specialist Dave StenderL · ·
02/17/09Tim Roseland farm tourVirtual tour of a niche pork farm led by the farmers and Iowa State University extension specialist Dave StenderL · ·
02/10/09Dan Wilson farm tourVirtual tour of a niche pork farm led by the farmers and Iowa State University extension specialist Dave StenderL · · ·
02/03/09Steve Howe farm tourVirtual tour of a niche pork farm led by the farmers and Iowa State University extension specialist Dave StenderL · ·
01/27/09Lyle Rossiter farm tourVirtual tour of a niche pork farm led by the farmers and Iowa State University extension specialist Dave StenderL · ·
01/20/09Martin Kramer farm tourVirtual tour of a niche pork farm led by the farmers and Iowa State University extension specialist Dave StenderL · ·