"This was phenomenal! What a fantastic blend of information, inspiration, and resources. This will help me personally and the clients I encounter as a naturalist. Thank you for a superb workshop!!"
Growing forest farming in the Midwest
Over the course of two days, 47 attendees from natural resource agencies across Missouri, including MDC, LU Extension, and Missouri Master Naturalists, heard from a variety of experts with diverse experiences in forest farming and woodland management.
Speakers and topics included:
Hannah Hemmelgarn, Introduction to Forest Farming in the Midwest
Forest farming encompasses a wide variety of plants and practices. Hannah introduces some of the approaches to managing a forest farm as well as several forest farmed woodland species.
Jeanine Davis, Forest farming for conservation and market development
Jeanine Davis explains the current and potential market for several prominent forest farmed species. Jeanine also shared her experiences with propagating and growing these plants in North Carolina.
Brian Kruse, NRCS, Federal Funding Opportunities for Forest Farming in Missouri
NRCS offers a variety of programs supplying cost-share to landowners to implement conservation practices. Brian Cruse covered program practices that can help support the establishment and maintenance of forest farms.
Badger Johnson, Farming Herbs in the Woods: Site Selection, Bed Preparation and Managing Soil Fertility
Site selection is the most important step for a successful forest farm. Badger Johnson shared some key environmental and soil indicators to look for when choosing where to plant in the woods.
Nadia Navarrete-Tindall, Native edible plants for forest understory
There are many plants native to Missouri that love shade. Nadia Navarrete-Tindall provided an overview of several species that would grow well in a forest farm and can be found here in the Midwest.
Carter Kinkead, Timber Stand Improvement and prescribed Burn to establish forest farming
Thinning and burning in the woodland can support a healthy forest ecosystem and be valuable tools for preparing a site for forest farming. Carter Kinkead shared how these practices support forest health and how they can contribute to a successful forest farm.
John Munsell, Forest Farming Markets: The Future of Just and Equitable Trade
John Munsell emphasized the importance of equitable sourcing of botanicals and other forest grown products to ensure the conservation of these species. John also covered how forest farmers in Virginia have come together to form a centralized herb hub, building greater demand and higher selling prices for sustainable grown and harvested materials.
Workshop trainees inoculate shiitake mushroom logs under the guidance of Marley Magner (MO Fungus).
Workshop attendees are welcomed by Lincoln's President Moseley
Tentative Workshop Schedule
Image: Forest farm nursery beds at Lincoln University Busby Farm