ORGANIC FARMING AND COMPOST MAKING TRAINING
AT BLUE SKY ORGANICS FARM
Blue Sky organics training has now been split into 2 different training workshops and after several months of holding the newer format these workshops have proven to be a successful modification.
This has been done to offer more specific and deeper information to the two specific different groups of people coming to the training workshops:
- Those wanting to grow their own food and live sustainably
- Those wanting to farm organically.
Please do email Liz Eglington to enquire forthcoming dates
Details of the content of the Training workshop:
WORKSHOP ON : THE PRINCIPLES OF ORGANICS, FOOD GROWING AND COMPOST MAKING
This is a 3 day training
Next Date : 21st to 23rd November 2022 Monday to Wednesday
FUTURE DATES: to be advised. Held every 2 month depending on demand. Please enquire by email if interested.
VENUE: Blue Sky Organics olive farm, Van Wyksdorp, Klein Karoo (Between Barrydale and Ladismith)
PRICE: R900 per day for 3 days
- Accommodation: R400 per person per day . Training & accommodation includes all 3 meals.
CONTACT: LIZ EGLINGTON, 028 5812014/0836533635 OR email her firstname.lastname@example.org
Farmer Liz Eglington has been farming olives, fruit and vegetables organically on the farm for 20 years. She has been awarded Woman Farmer of The Year, Finalist “Most Influential Woman in Agriculture”, Finalist Eco Warrior for Enviropaedia Awards. Liz has been actively involved in Environmental work and the development of Organic Agriculture in SA through 12 years as Director and Secretary of SAOSO (SA Organic Ass), Founding Member and Secretary of PGSSA (Participatory Guarantee Systems), and Chairperson Of Conservation@Work for 8 years.
In response to the Global Environmental and Health crisis, there is increasing consumer awareness of the need to grow or source and support ethically grown food that supplies us with the nutrients that our bodies need for basic health and vitality.
Particularly in the past 2 and half years there has been an explosion of information due to people deciding to grow their own food. The Internet is a great resource but there also can be and is conflicting information because some are homesteaders turned bloggers sharing their experiences, based on THEIR needs and research done.
This training workshop has been structured to give THE BASICS OF HOW THINGS WORK. The Natural laws and what makes up a living healthy soil which feeds healthy vibrant plants- which feed humanity and most of life on Earth, is based on information that is thousands of years old, is unchangeable and true. Once one is armed with this BASIC knowledge one can then surf the internet and speak to other like minded people, growers and farmers, and then CHECK any conflicting information against these natural laws. It takes the stress away and makes for an enjoyable and exciting journey of health and empowerment.
Farmers and their Consultants are being asked to move to more sustainable agriculture methods to meet this demand, and to assist the Planet. The media and enlightened medical practitioners have exposed the gross amounts of pesticides and poisons that are used to grow the “food” sold in our supermarkets, and the rampant global health and obesity epidemic is proof that we need to eat differently. Those living in poverty need to be encouraged to grow their own food and not waste hard earned wages buying “food” that does not give them health.
Growers and farmers are responding to the increased demand, households are growing their own food, and local markets are springing up everywhere. All very positive!
The challenge now facing us is the misinformation and disinformation campaign from the chemical and vested interests in big business, and so there is confusion about what organic and “naturally grown” really is.
Compost is a critical component, yet most do not make compost correctly and so end up with “mulch” and not the humus that obeys the “law of Return” which supplies the soil and plants and micro-organisms with the nutrients and carbon essential for their health.
This is an existing and successful workshop which takes place on a certified organic farm which has been farming organically for 20 years, and covers theoretical and practical instruction that is aimed at the following:
- Smallholder farmers
- Consumers wanting to grow their own food
- Retailers and Health practitioners wanting to understand the constructs of Organic in order to educate themselves and their clients.
The workshop covers the following:
1 Practical Session:
- Watching a compost heap being built from scratch to completion over the 3 days
- Working with vermicasts at a wormfarm setup, and making worm or vermicast tea.
- Making bokashi as a rich nutrient feed for plants and trees
- Making herbal teas as a natural pesticide/repellent and as a rich nutrient feed for plants and trees
- Collecting and Saving seeds. Practical session on how to collect, dry, separate out and store seeds- each participant will take home several packets of organic and heritage seeds
- Planting trees- a practical session on how best to plant trees, compost and mulch them and ensure their healthy survival.
Different irrigation systems. Examples of each and their benefits or otherwise.
- Walking through the fruit, herb and vegetable gardens and discussing the salient points gathered in the theoretical sessions.
- Pruning practical session and using the prunings to create cuttings in the propagation tunnel- and discussions on what best materials to use.
- Walking the nursery to witness benefits of propagation.
- Planting seeds, planting out seedlings. Making up the best potting soil.
Tour of “chicken palace” with some best practice discussions on having happy chickens
- Tour of agro-forestry plantings to cover the soil, utilise “dead spaces” and create a vibrant diverse eco-system and fodder for the compost heaps.
- How to make cost effective drying areas for excess herbs, fruit and vegetables.
Practical examples of planting all year round food for bees and pollinators.
- Practical examples of protecting vegetable and fruit gardens from wild foragers (birds and animals) and also leaving “free food” for them.
2. Theoretical Sessions
Conveyed Through Powerpoint presentations and watching important powerful DVD’s and Interviews.
3. Subjects Covered
- Why Organic. The devastation wreaked on the Planet, humans and animals as we moved AWAY from organic.
- In depth study of the structure of HEALTHY soil. Types of soil, PH and what it means, soil minerals and what causes imbalances- and how this affects our health and soil health, understanding the ratios and relationships. The new research information has revealed that NPK are essential but NOT the most important minerals, and we go in depth into the Biological Sequence of the minerals, and how they are connected and work together IN SEQUENCE. A lack affects the entire chain of 17 minerals required for healthy trees and soil.
- Inter cropping and companion planting. There is wonderful new information based on research trials of how many seeds and how many seed families are optimum to grow together. This is a non-input way to put nutrients and carbon back into orchards.
Micro-organisms- what they are, what they do and their essential co-existence in soil with each other and with plants. There is a plethora of books now published that deal just with micro-organisms because we are only now realising their importance. They are the army under and within the soil that we kill with our unsustainable farming and chemical practices.
- Roots. How they work, how they take up minerals and nutrients, and their relationships with each other and the micro-organisms that live on them.
- Compost- what is it and what is it not. Different types of compost, and how to make them. How to measure them, and use them. Practical compost making.
- Worm farming and vermi-compost.