Author: Frances Champagne

2024 Online Vegetable Production Certificate Course

We’re offering a Vegetable Production Certificate Course, beginning on February 25th 2024. It is a fully online course for new and beginning farmers who have 0-3 years of vegetable growing experience or no formal training in agriculture. The participants will learn answers to the basic questions about farm business planning, planning and preparing for vegetable farm, warm and cool-season vegetable production techniques, season extension, identification of biotic and abiotic issues, and marketing. The price of the course is $149. 

Please contact the course coordinator, Shuresh Ghimire (Shuresh.Ghimire@uconn.edu, 860-870-6933) with any questions about this course.

Registration deadline: February 19, 2024

Register at s.uconn.edu/vegcourse

Course Description

This vegetable production course is designed to benefit beginner vegetable producers who have 0-3 years of vegetable growing experience or no formal training in agriculture. The participants will learn answers to the basic questions about farm business planning, planning and preparing for vegetable farm, warm and cool-season vegetable production techniques, season extension, identification of biotic and abiotic issues, and marketing.

  • The course consists of seven online modules, each of which include a self-paced video, supplemental material, and a short quiz.
  • The slides presented in the video are also provided in a downloaded PDF file for note-taking and future reference.
  • The supplemental materials are great addition to your personal reference library and valuable resources for all farmers.
  • The module quizzes are designed to test your knowledge of the key points within the specific module.
  • Each module is expected to take you approximately one hour to complete, although this varies by user.

Course Learning Objectives

At the end of this course, you will be able to:

  • Develop a farm business plan, which will help you keep records, manage time more effectively, and price products.
  • Explain the characteristics of a suitable site for commercial vegetable crop production and adjust as needed.
  • Perform soil sampling protocols for nutrient analysis.
  • Explain full season tasks involved in vegetable farming including planting, in-season care, harvesting, and post-harvest considerations for some warm-season and cool-season vegetables.
  • Scout and identify biotic and abiotic issues.
  • Explain tools for season extension.
  • Understand different strategies, resources, options, and models for direct-to-consumer retail.
  • Identify additional reliable and fact-based informational resources on topics related to vegetable farming.

Table of Contents

  1. Pretest: 25 questions
  2. Farm business planning: Developing a farm business plan and enterprise budgeting
  3. Plan and prepare for vegetable farm: Site selection, soil test, and cover crops
  4. Warm season vegetables: Crop selection, planting to harvesting and post-harvest management
  5. Cool-season vegetables: Crop selection, planting to harvesting and post-harvest management
  6. Identification of pests and abiotic problems: Identification of diseases, insects, nutritional and other issues
  7. Season extension: Differences among low, caterpillar, and high tunnel; Opportunities and challenges in high tunnel growing; Micro-environment management
  8. Marketing: Different strategies, resources, options, and models for direct-to-consumer retail.
  9. Post-test: 25 questions

Course Dates (2024)

While this is an asynchronous course which you may work through at your own pace between Feb 25 and Apr 7, a recommended class schedule is listed below:

Feb 25 – 29      – Complete the Online pre-test (pre-course quiz)

Mar 1 – 4                 – Module 1 – Farm Business Planning

March 5 – 9             – Module 2 – Planning and preparing for a vegetable farm

Mar 10 – 14             – Module 3 – Warm Season Vegetables

Mar 15 – 19             – Module 4 – Cool Season Vegetables

Mar 20 – 24           – Module 5 – ID Pest and Abiotic Problems

Mar 25 – 29           – Module 6 – Season Extension

Mar 30 – Apr 3    – Module 7 – Marketing

Apr 4 –  7               – Complete the post-test

Course Instructors

Abby Beissinger, Former Assistant Extension Educator, UConn

Bruce Gresczyk Jr., Gresczyk Farms

Jiff Martin, Extension Educator, UConn

Joe Bonelli, Associate Extension Educator, UConn

Kip Kolesinskas, Consulting Conservation Scientist

Shuresh Ghimire, Assistant Extension Educator, UConn

Steve Munno, Massaro Community Farm

 

Please contact the course coordinator, Shuresh Ghimire (shuresh.ghimire@uconn.edu, 860-870-6933) with any questions about this course.

UPDATES: CT Vegetable and Small Fruit Growers Conference 2024

UConn Extension Vegetable & Small Fruit Growers’ Conference

 January 9, 2024

UConn Student Union, Rooms 330 & 304

For full agenda and more information visit: s.uconn.edu/ctvfcprogram

Registration $60.00

Matriculated Students: $30.00 with valid school ID

Online registration is now closed. Walk-in registration is available but space is not guaranteed.

You must be registered by January 7, 2024 in order to receive guaranteed free parking. Parking is in the south garage.

Trade Show held throughout the conference, Pesticide recertification credits: 4 CEU available. 

Lunch & Parking is included in conference registration. Prior to the day of the conference, you will be sent an event parking link to register for validated parking.

TRADE SHOW & SPONSOR REGISTRATION IS FULL AT THIS TIME. 

If you have any questions please email tolland@uconn.edu or call 860-875-3331.

UConn Extension’s Vegetable & Small Fruit Growers’ Conference and Trade Show PDFs

The 2023 CT Vegetable and Small Fruit Growers’ Conference was held Wednesday, January 4. Please find below the PDF versions of the presentations. We hope to see you again in 2024!

Drone Imaging to Monitor Potato Leafhopper Damage in the Field

Vegetable benefits and disease control of nanotechnology

Strawberry Systems at Brookdale Fruit Farm

Nourse: Strawberry Plug vs Bare Root