AMHERST, Mass. — UMass Instructor and Extension Specialist, Sonia Schloemann, will offer an online class for New Englanders wanting to learn how to establish and manage fruit plantings from a holistic or systems perspective. The class will include the four main small fruit or berry crops (strawberries, raspberries/blackberries, blueberries and grapes) and four tree fruit crops (apples, pears, peaches and plums). Students will gain an understanding of the site and soil requirements, planting and training systems, pruning practices, nutrient requirements, pollination needs, and pest complex facing each of the major fruit crops covered.
Sonia Schloemann is an expert on commercial and residential production of fruit crops as well as the use of edible plants in sustainable landscaping practices. Schloemann has extensive experience educating and consulting with commercial growers throughout Massachusetts and New England, and she also conducts applied research in the growing of table and wine grapes under Massachusetts’ growing conditions.
This course is designed for local conditions and information covered will be oriented to growing conditions found in the Northeastern United States. Traditional practices and innovations, organic, IPM and conventional practices will be covered. Students will also do an independent project studying a fruit crop of their choosing that has not been covered in class. This will allow them to learn about a fruit of special interest to them or one that is not typically grown in the Northeastern United States.
STOCKSCH 290F is a 3-credit college level class and maybe used to satisfy the degree requirements for the UMass Sustainable Food and Farming 15-credit Certificate, the 60-credit Associate of Science and/or the 120-credit Bachelor of Science degree programs. Credits may also be transferred to other colleges or universities. The UMass Stockbridge School of Agriculture Sustainable Food and Farming program is the only college level program in the U.S. that offers 40 online classes that may be taken either individually or toward completion of one of these three fully online degrees.
In addition to Holistic Fruit Production, spring classes include other courses such as Global Food Systems, and Soil Fertility (for more advanced students) among others. Spring classes begin on January 22, 2019 and registration is now open. For information on the 10 online food and farming classes offered this spring semester at UMass Amherst, please see: https://onlinesustfoodfarm.com/.
Stockbridge School of Agriculture
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