- Crop Production: high tunnels or hoop houses, season extension types and construction
- Education and Training: extension
This proposal will provide training for Alaska agriculture professionals working with high tunnel producers in a workshop scheduled for autumn 2015 in Kenai. In addition to all Alaska agriculture/horticulture Extension agents, staff from other in-state agriculture organizations will be invited to attend. Topics will include aspects of sustainable practices including nutrient management, integrated pest management, crop selection, irrigation, and construction/maintenance considerations. As a part of the workshop, a farm tour in Kenai will showcase several sustainable high tunnel operations. There will also be a brainstorming session to identify education and research priorities related to high tunnel production in high latitudes. Following the workshop, Extension agents will create a series of high tunnel publications based on the needs identified in the brainstorming session and the information learned at the workshop. Each extension agent will also utilize the knowledge gained in the workshop to offer high tunnel trainings to producers in each district served by an agent.
Project objectives from proposal:
The goal of this proposal is to improve the sustainability of high tunnel agriculture throughout Alaska. We will achieve this goal through the following objectives:
Objective 1 – provide a professional development workshop to train eight Extension agents and other agriculture professionals on all relevant aspects of high tunnel production at high latitudes to enable provision of valuable technical assistance to producers. Anticipated date of completion: October 1, 2015
Objective 2 – prepare a series of Extension bulletins on high tunnel production at high latitudes to be used by producers across Alaska. At least four publications, in bulletin format, will be created by the eight agriculture/horticulture Extension agents. A final list of publications to prepare will be selected at the workshop based on needs identified during a brainstorming session. Anticipated date of completion: June 30, 2016
Objective 3 – disseminate information learned with each Extension agent offering a high tunnel workshop within a year to current and prospective producers in their district. The workshops will increase attendees’ knowledge of high tunnel production methods leading to adoption of practices that reduce costs and improve natural resource management. Anticipated date of completion: September 30, 2016