Winter production can be key to increasing profitability on small vegetable farms and to satisfying the increasing demand for local produce. To better equip farmers for winter production, the Webb City Farmers Market is hosting the Midwest Winter Vegetable Production Conference on Monday and Tuesday, November 10 and 11.
The conference features nationally-known winter producers Alison and Paul Wiediger of Au Naturel Farm in Kentucky. They will present on such topics as Maximizing high tunnel production, High tunnel mesclun and greens production and Managing and record keeping for maximum profit.
Dr. Lewis Jett of West Virginia University Extension will speak on Low tunnel production, High tunnel strawberry production, and Post harvest handling. Arkansas grower and educator Patrice Gros will present on High tunnel siting, choices of equipment, costs and returns as well as Winter production crop choices and planning for our region. Bob Schulteis, Webster County University of Missouri Extension, will speak on High tunnel heating alternatives. Patrick Byers with Green County U of MO Extension, will present on High tunnel maintenance and rehabbing equipment and long term soil management.
The conference will be held at the Continental Banquet Center, 2728 North Rangeline, Joplin.
The conference will end with a tour of Center Creek Farms near Sarcoxie, Missouri, where Samantha Craig is in her second year of growing cool weather crops and greens in an unheated moveable high tunnel. Center Creek Farms sells at the Joplin Farmers Market and plans to sell at the Webb City Winter Farmers Market.
Cost of the conference is $50 per person and includes two lunches and educational materials. Additional persons from the same farm are $40 per person. The conference is sponsored by the Webb City Farmers Market, University of Missouri Extension and Lincoln University Cooperative Extension. It is underwritten by a Local Foods Matching Grant from the Missouri Department of Agriculture.
More information and a registration form are available at webbcityfarmersmarket.com or by calling 417 483-8139.