To develop a truly local, sustainable food supply, we need more farmers. This series of classes is designed to provide knowledge and hands-on experience for people interested in growing their own food or developing small farms to create a vibrant local food system. Classes will be taught by Soil Born Farms staff and other experts in the community, and held at Soil Born Farms American River Ranch. For more information about the curriculum, contact
Spring 2013 Grow Your Groceries Classes
Urban Farmer Course
Fourteen classes of your choice, three educational farm visits, sixteen hands-on field hours, and one-on-one assistance with land access and business planning. (Course value: $740)
Home Gardener Course
Eleven classes of your choice, two educational farm visits, and eight hands-on field hours. (Course value: $460)
The Business of Starting a Small Farm: Goal Setting & Enterprise Analysis
Wednesday, April 10, 5pm-8pm
Small Farm Site Selection & Design
Saturday, April 13, 3pm-6pm
Crop Planning: Planning for Success in your Garden or Small Farm
Wednesday, April 17, 5:30-8:30pm
Getting the Season Started: Managing a Greenhouse from Seed to Field
Saturday, April 20, 3pm-6pm
The Business of Starting a Small Farm: Legalities & Logistics
Saturday, May 1, 3pm-6pm
Integrated Pest Management
Wednesday, May 29, 5:30-8:30pm
Irrigation & Water Management
Saturday, June 1, 3pm-6pm
The Business of Starting a Small Farm: Marketing & Record Keeping Essentials
Wednesday, June 5, 5:30-8:30pm
Weed Management: Garden & Farm-Scale Techniques, Timing, and Practice
Wednesday, June 12, 5:30-8:30pm
Bringing Fruit Trees into your Landscape
Saturday, June 15, 3pm-7pm
Designing Your Annual Vegetable Garden: Crop Rotation, Seasonality, Plant Care and Harvest
Saturday, June 22, 3pm-7pm
You may also be interested in our other Adult Education classes offered through the Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op.
|Shawn Harrison, Founder & Co-Director of Soil Born Farms
Shawn's background includes certification in ecological horticulture from the Center Agroecology and Sustainable Food Systems at U.C. Santa Cruz and an M.S. degree in international agriculture development from UC Davis.
Simon has worked as a farmer and educator managing Soil Born Farms’ Adult Education Curriculum and the Green Jobs Program for disadvantaged youth. He founded Two Crows Farm. Simon has a master’s degree in education and many years of experience working with youth and adults, helping them to develop the skills necessary to design efficient home scale food systems in an ecologically sustainable manner.
Dan Gannon, Humble Roots CSA
Dan Gannon is a father and farmer. He started Humble Roots Community Supported Agriculture on a half-acre plot in West Sacramento in 2011. The purpose of the operation is to restore agrarian values to the community and to engage his customers in their local food system. The CSA offers the experience of being directly connected to an organic farm, and is really a mutual commitment between eater and farmer. The member makes a financial commitment; he makes the commitment to grow food in a way that they find valuable. His farm burns zero petroleum; all labor is performed by hand and beast. Dan’s hope is that anyone who says to themselves, “I think I'd like to be a farmer” can have the experience of making a modest living and leading a meaningful and contented life through farming.
Chuck Ingels, UC Cooperative Extension
Chuck Ingels has been the Farm and Horticulture Advisor with UC Cooperative Extension in Sacramento County since 1996. In this role, he conducts research and educational programs for tree fruit and wine grape growers, landscape professionals, and the public. He also oversees the Fair Oaks Horticulture Center, which is maintained by over fifty Master Gardeners. He was the lead technical editor and author of the UC Davis publication, The Home Orchard, published in 2007, as well as Cover Cropping in Vineyards, published in 1998. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in fruit science from Cal Poly, SLO, and a Master’s degree in horticulture from UC Davis. From 1989-96, he was a tree and vine crop analyst for the UC Sustainable Agriculture Research & Education Program.
Carl Rosato, Woodleaf Farm
Carl Rosato is the owner of Woodleaf Farm in the Sierra foothills of California, which has been Certified Organic for over 30 years. He has been an organic fruit farmer since 1975 and focuses on growing the most flavorful and minerally balanced fruit. Carl has conducted research on brown rot control using organic materials with funding from Organic Farming Research Foundation. He helped direct, design and run the Going Organic Project through the CCOF Foundation. In addition, Carl has worked with farmers as a soils consultant for over 25 years to balance soil minerals and to design and maintain organic orchards. He regularly teaches organic farming classes at colleges and to farming and gardening groups, and has taught collaboratively in Mexico and Ecuador, doing work to protect 70 acres of primary forest in the latter. Carl has served on the boards of CCOF and CAFF. He is passionate about understanding how organic farming systems work and loves to teach what he learns.
Marisa Alcorta, NCAT/ATTRA
Marisa Alcorta dove into agriculture after living on a permaculture farm in Costa Rica in 1998, and her passion has been helping farmers work toward a more sustainable agriculture ever since. She has worked at NCAT (the National Center for Appropriate Technology) and the ATTRA project for the last 5 years, helping immigrant and beginning farmers learn more about how to get started farming. Her expertise is in marketing, business planning, record keeping and farm finances, organic soil management, ecological pest management and access to government programs. Marisa brings experience as a farm worker, farm advocate, farmer educator, and as a beginning farmer herself to the table. Marisa launched a farming partnership in 2012 with 3 other women, called Cloverleaf Farm, producing organic vegetables and managing a 4-acre stone fruit orchard. She received her B.S. from Cornell University where she studied sustainable agriculture and international development, and her M.S. from UC Davis in Horticulture & Agronomy, where she studied Viticulture. She received her Permaculture Design Certificate in
February of 2012.