Presentation on theme: "Applications of sustainability on the farm. Examples of sustainable practices on the farm: Practices which protect and improve soils, conserve, recycle."— Presentation transcript:
Examples of sustainable practices on the farm: Practices which protect and improve soils, conserve, recycle and improve the availability of crop nutrients, such as: – Crop rotations, cover cropping, green manures, composting, intercropping and conservation tillage
Animal systems which effectively use nutrients from animal manures – Intensive rotational grazing, composting, systems for manure collection and stabilization, proper application
Pest management aimed at reducing or eliminating use of synthetic pesticides and supporting beneficial insects. IPM strategies that emphasize cultural, biological, and physical control methods such as: – Timing of field operations, pest resistant varieties, sanitation, scouting, etc.
Emphasize reliance on on-farm resources Integrating animals with cropping systems allows use of manures to supply nutrients back to fields.
Greater diversity in biological systems Planting mixed cover crop species in orchard rows adds an incredible diversity of plant species to promote populations of beneficial insect species to an orchard.
Particular emphasis in soil quality Tilling in cover crops as a source of green manure; applications of compost; and reduced tillage systems with living mulches.
Increase economic diversity to enhance and stabilize farm income Have multiple enterprises to reduce your economic risks – choose them to compliment each other for cash flow throughout the year or growing season.
Example: Small acreage – vegetables/flowers Five acres Vegetables, fruits and flowers In-town location Selling direct to consumer Follows organic practices (but not certified)
Pest management Long crop rotations Crop diversity Row covers for some insects (leaf miners, flea beetles) Weed management by cultivation and hand tools Few disease problems
Irrigation Drip irrigation - reduces water use and also reduces spread of diseases
Season Extension Longer growing season increases sales - early spring and later into fall Hoop houses and floating row covers
Labor – Weekly transplanting and weeding by hand = intensive physical labor
Soil building - Cover crops and green manures – buckwheat, rye, hairy vetch Makes compost – has a horse for manure and plenty of yard and garden waste. Improved soil structure, water holding, will benefit through long term nutrient availability
Fertilizing Uses the compost and nitrogen from tilled-in cover crops Occasional fish emulsion Some producers use fish meal, greensand
Equipment Small walk behind tiller $3000 Garden cart $200 Tiller used extensively in the rows to plant succession crops – every two weeks
Marketing – Direct to Consumer Multiple venues: – Farmer’s markets – Direct to Coop – CSA (subscription sales)
Demands special skill, time and labor. Must have high quality produce. Producer captures more of the consumer dollar. Marketing – Direct to Consumer
Quality of Life Love what they do Personal connection to people eating their food They are doing their part in reducing use of world’s limited fossil fuels by selling local foods Grow their own food
Summary Farmers uses a variety of tools to: – raise and sell their products for income, while – conserving their natural resources of soil and water, and – living a comfortable live that meets their needs or values.