2018 Model State Program- University of Arkansas

Project Overview

SAR18-001
Project Type: PDP State Program
Funds awarded in 2018: $44,444.00
Projected End Date: 12/31/2019
Grant Recipient: University of Arkansas
Region: Southern
State: Arkansas
State Coordinator:
Dr. Amanda McWhirt
University of Arkansas Cooperative Extension

Commodities

  • Vegetables: beans, broccoli, cabbages, cucurbits, greens (leafy), greens (lettuces), tomatoes, turnips

Practices

  • Crop Production: cover crops, crop rotation, high tunnels or hoop houses, irrigation, low tunnels, multiple cropping
  • Education and Training: demonstration, extension, workshop
  • Pest Management: biorational pesticides, botanical pesticides, prevention

    Abstract:

    The Arkansas’s 2018-2019 Model State Program focused on opportunities and educational trainings for Extension agents, associates and program aides, USDA staff, farmers’ market managers, other agriculture professionals and farmer leaders on issues important to increasing the sustainability of Arkansas farmers.  Because we didn’t receive our contract until Feb 2019 we did not offer our planned workshops on ‘Managing Soil Health and Fertility’ and ‘Managing Grazing Systems’. We are planning to offer these in the fall of 2019.  We did however work with the Eureka Springs Community Foundation and the Eureka Springs School district ag instructor to offer a workshop on composting and greenhouse production. An enhancement grant that was received in Dec 2018 offered programming on Winter High Tunnel Production.  We had two casual open (high tunnel) house events at Hope and Clarksville where people toured high tunnel production and two workshops (Fayetteville, Lonoke) that provided in depth information and a farm tour. Additionally, the enhancement grant provided travel scholarships for three extension agents to attend the Winter High Tunnel workshop by Pam Dawling at the SSAWG conference in Little Rock. Regular MSP funds provided travel scholarships to two UA Division of Ag staff and three farmer mentors to also attend SSAWG and and an extension agent to attend the National Young Farmer Coalition conference in Nov 2018. Additionally, the advisory committee met in November to review past activities and provide input for the 2019-2020 plan.

    Project objectives:

    The objectives of the 2018-2019 Arkansas Model State Program are:

    • To expand the understanding and application of sustainable agriculture concepts by agriculture professionals including Extension agents and specialists, farmers market managers, farmer leaders and others and to increase their confidence to implement and share sustainable agriculture information.
    • To increase the awareness of the SARE program among agriculture leaders in Arkansas, the resources it provides and increase awareness of training opportunities and scholarships for Arkansas agriculture leaders interested in sustainable agriculture.
    • To continue to employ the advisory board to provide input to the AR SARE PDP program, and share information about the AR SARE program through their professional circles.
    Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.