|The SU Ag Center's Sustainable Urban Agriculture Certification Program provides hands-on experience to individuals who are interested in learning how to farm in small spaces.|
Baton Rouge, La. – Approximately 15 individuals are participating in the Southern University Ag Center’s Sustainable Urban Agriculture Certification Program.
One of the trainings was held Monday, August 20 at BREC’s Howell Community Park in Baton Rouge in conjunction with Baton Roots Community Farm.
During the training, which was the third session of the certification’s five-week training, participants received hands-on training on rainwater harvest, rain barrel construction, hydroponics systems, and an introduction to the use of drones in agriculture.
The intensive training series teaches participants how to use sustainable agricultural practices in an urban environment; with hands-on experience.
“This certification program teaches individuals who live in urban and rural areas how to be sustainable farmers by using the resources they have around them to farm in small spaces, rather than large open fields,” said Marlon Ford, Ph.D., Urban Agricultural Specialist and program coordinator. “There are many communities that are food deserts with no access to fresh produce or farmers markets. This training provides individuals with the skills they need to grow their own vegetables and fruit organically,” added Ford.
“The goal for us at the Southern University Ag Center is to not only provide our participants with the skills to help their families eat healthier but we what our participants to share what they have learned with others in their communities,” expressed Ford.
Additional topics that will be covered during the series will include: Permaculture and the Environment; Irrigation and Composting; Small Scale Agriculture; Animal Husbandry: Poultry, Bees and Worms; Vertical Farming; Maximizing the Use of Land Resources and Infrastructure; Working with City Government within City Ordinances; Construction Techniques, Hoop Houses, Raised Beds; Organic and Sustainable Production and Combatting Diseases and Man-Made Threats.
The training was facilitated by Mila Berhane, Senior Research Associate and Dr. Marlon Ford, Urban Agricultural Specialist. Each class will be led by experts and professors from the SU Ag Center.
The training began on August 6 and will conclude with a graduation ceremony on September 3.
To date, the SU Ag Center has held Sustainable Urban Agriculture Certification programs in St. Landry, East Baton Rouge, and Livingston Parish, Rapides, Avoyelles, and Natchitoches Parishes.
The Baton Roots Community Farm is a program which provides an opportunity for the Baton Rouge community to learn sustainable agricultural practices on an urban farm. It was developed by The Walls Project to inspire health and wellness among all ages through hands-on gardening with an artistic environment.
For additional information about the Sustainable Urban Agriculture Certification Program, contact Dr. Marlon Ford at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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