WOOSTER, Ohio — According to the 2019 USDA Census of Agriculture, Ohio ranks 5th among U.S. states in the number of certified organic farms. Over the past three years, Ohio’s organic sales and cropland acres have both increased by more than 35%.
For those involved in, considering, or simply curious about organic agriculture, Ohio State is hosting a series of short winter webinars on various organic production topics. These sessions are brief, free, and can be accessed online or by telephone. All sessions are 11:00-11:45 a.m. and will include ample time for questions and discussion.
Wednesday, January 13 at 11 a.m. Transition Q&A. Julia Barton from the Ohio Ecological Food and Farm Association (OEFFA) will share answers to common questions from growers transitioning to organic production. She will also leave time to answer additional questions that participants might have. If you are in the early stages of considering organic or just want to learn more about how organic certification works, this 45-minute session will be full of good information. OEFFA has been certifying organic growers and companies since 1979.
Wednesday, January 20 at 11 a.m. Manure Analysis: How Much Nitrogen Can You Get from Manure? Animal manures are a natural way to boost soil fertility and organic matter. Glen Arnold from Ohio State Extension will discuss general differences in manure types, what to expect from a manure analysis, and how to apply those results to your fertility program.
Wednesday, January 27 at 11 a.m. Irrigation Basics Larry Brown from Ohio State will discuss basic considerations about when and how to use irrigation and what questions should go into your decision-making process.
Wednesday, February 3 at 11 a.m. Cultural Control Strategies for Nightmare Weeds Weed management is without question one of the biggest obstacles for growers who use organic techniques. Organic weed control requires a knowledge of weed life cycles and the use of multiple approaches and tactics. Douglas Doohan from the Wooster campus Ohio State weed lab will discuss some of the worst weeds and non-chemical techniques for their control.
Wednesday, February 17 at 11 a.m. Considerations for Organic High Tunnel Production Dr. Matthew Kleinhenz will discuss considerations for organic high tunnel production. Additional educational programs on this topic are available through Ohio State’s High Tunnel and Season Extension School January 12 through February 16. Learn more at: https://go.osu.edu/high-tunnel-school-21
Wednesday, February 24 at 11 a.m. Organic Dairy Herd Health Management Some of the common conventional tools for dairy herd health management are not allowed in organic production or are simply harder to implement. A research team at Ohio State interviewed several organic dairy farmers to learn what factors and holistic strategies are critical to organic herd health management. Project field coordinators Caroline Brock and Jessica Pempek will discuss what they learned about organic dairy farmers use of vaccines, antibiotics, natural remedies and other strategies.
Additional topics are planned for March on beneficial insects, soil health, marketing, grazing, and urban agriculture. For more information on the organic series or to sign up for email reminders, visit go.osu.edu/organic-series or contact program manager Cassandra Brown at 330-263-3634.
Ohio State Extension offers a variety of additional winter programming. Learn more at https://agnr.osu.edu/programming.
— Ohio State University Extension
For more articles out of Ohio, click here.