Wednesday, November 23

SU Ag Center’s 2016 Fall Garden Workshop a blooming success

Baton Rouge, LA – After several reports that the August 2016 flood waters contained chemicals and both human and animal feces, many gardeners and farmers in Baton Rouge and the surrounding areas were wondering about the health of their soil.

With that fact in mind, the Southern University Ag Center themed its' 2016 Fall Gardening Workshop, “Recovering Your Soil – Gardens, Farms and Spirit!” The workshop, which was held on Nov. 22 in A. O. Williams Hall - SU Ag Center - drew a crowd of more than 80 small and backyard gardeners, farmers and school and community garden coordinators.

Southern University Ag Center Chancellor – Dean of the College of Agriculture, Dr. Bobby R. Phills welcomed the attendees to the Land-Grant Campus – made up of the SU Ag Center and the College of Agriculture.

“When people think about the SU Ag Center, they only think about this building. But the SU Ag Center is also the agents housed around the state,” explained Phills.

Southern University Ag Center Vice Chancellor for Extension, Dr. Dawn Mellion-Patin also addressed the attendees and explained why the SU Ag Center holds the Fall Gardening Workshop on the week of Thanksgiving every year.

“We started this workshop four years ago and it is held at this time any year because we wanted to give the teachers an opportunity to come and take information back to their schools,” said Patin.

Other presentations included a hands-on demonstration on Healthy Soils by USDA Natural Resources Conversation Services State Soil Scientist, Michael Lindsey, which discussed the importance of having cover crops to reduce soil run-off; Collecting Soil Samples Correctly, which explained the proper way to collect a soil sample and where the sample should be taken to be tested; Flood Resistant Trees for Louisiana’s Climate, which provided examples of the various water resistant trees that grow in the state as well as ways to plant trees in a manner that will allow them to serve as a barrier against flooding; Is Produce Safety Important?, which explained the importance of following safety rules and regulations when growing and harvesting produce and Growing with the Seasons, which discussed the types of fruits and vegetables that can be grown in each season.

Attendees were also able to participate in either a hands-on fig propagation or wreath and bow making demonstration.

The Fall Gardening Workshop was co-sponsored by the Southern University Ag Center, its Wisteria Alliance Program and the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) Program. 

Photos from the event are available here.


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