Regenerative Soil Health for Horticultural Growers
Time & Location
About the Event
From large horticultural operations to market gardens, when soil health principles are followed, they bring real results: better soil structure, healthier crops, and more consistent yields.
Whether you are a large horticultural grower or smaller market gardener this course, led by agroecological adviser Niels Corfield and the FarmED team, will enable you to apply these principles to improve soil health for optimum horticultural performance.
In addition to the formal training, we will facilitate peer to peer learning and discussion. You will also hear from a guest speaker, take a tour of the various enterprises at FarmED, and be fed nutritious, seasonal, and locally produced food from the FarmED Kitchen.
Course content and structure
This course is split into two sessions run over three days as follows:
Session 1: Fundamentals of Soil Health & Regenerative Agriculture – 1st September 2021
In this session you will be introduced to how natural ecosystem processes affect your soil, and how by following regenerative agriculture principles you can work with these processes to improve soil health. Crucially you will learn about the important role soil biology plays in crop performance and farm resilience and what practices can be used to support healthy soils.
We will define what healthy soil looks like and take a walk around FarmED to demonstrate how to measure this in the field using practical soil tests. You will also learn how to read your own soil and how to use the SoilMentor app so that you can collect data from your own farm to analyse before the second session.
Session 2: Improving and monitoring the health of your soil – 4th & 5th October 2021
In this 2-day session you will analyse the soil observations you collected using SoilMentor as a basis for developing an action plan to apply the principles of regenerative agriculture to your growing operation.
We will then discuss agroecological strategies and techniques for improving soil health from preparation to harvest, including:
● Reworking crop rotations
● Working with compost and other soil amendments that build soil organic matter
● Foliar nutrition
● Designing and integrating cover crop mixtures
● Weeds & weeding
● Best practice and low-cost options for covered growing
To make sure you can measure the benefits of the changes you make to your soil you will be given training on monitoring soil and plant health as well as signposting and advice on how to get the most from lab testing.
Who's this course for?
This course is designed for market gardeners and commercial horticultural growers but is also suitable for nursery workers, horticultural managers, apprentices, and trainee growers. To gain the most benefit from the course it is recommended that you land on which you can practice the lessons during the course.
About the trainer
Niels Corfield has been working to deliver truly sustainable food and farming systems for more than 15 years. He is an independent adviser and trainer. He has 12 years’ experience in adult education and is formally trained in Holistic Management and Regenerative Agriculture Design. On a mission to create regenerative landscapes and farms in the UK and Europe, Niels focuses on agroecological systems that are low maintenance yet productive.
£350.00 + VAT
Ticket price includes three hot lunches and one hot dinner (evening of the 4th October).
Participants receive all course handouts and complimentary access to the SoilMentor app for use during the course.
Special offer - 10% discount for members of the Pasture Fed Livestock Association. Please use the code 'SOILPFLA10' at checkout.
This course is part of our regenerative soil health series for 2021 – choose which one suits you. Discounts are available if you wish to do more than one:
The FarmED Bursary
If funding is a barrier to you, we can help. We have a small bursary pot which we can use to help fund or part fund course fees and other expenses for those that will benefit most.
Click here for more info: www.farm-ed.co.uk/bursaries
GREAT Project Participants
As part of the project we can offer subsidised places to existing and aspiring farmers, growers and advisers in Gloucestershire to the suite of regenerative agriculture and agroecological transition courses at FarmED. To book, please select the GREAT ticket option below. You will be asked for a few eligibility details including evidence of your involvement in regenerative agriculture and your potential impact in Gloucestershire.
More information and booking
If you require more information on FarmED please email email@example.com.
Your booking is safe. If we cannot run any element of the training face to face due to Covid restrictions, you will be refunded, or you can switch to an alternative course/date.
Photo credit: Trevor Ray Hart