MU Center for Agroforestry Hosts Education Events for Producers this Summer

This summer, the MU Center for Agroforestry will host three events aimed at helping those producing or interested in producing elderberry, nut trees and practicing agroforestry. Each event is designed to provide classroom and hands-on learning that will benefit both new and experienced growers.

Comprehensive Elderberry Workshop and Orchard Tour

Set for June 15-16 in Columbia, this workshop explores one of Missouri’s fastest-growing specialty crops — elderberry. The event is co-sponsored by River Hills Harvest.

Participants will have the opportunity to hear about more than 20 topics from experienced growers; learn about orchard culture, marketing and processing; shop and sample elderberry products and supplies at the Elderberry Expo; and take a tour of a nearby elderberry orchard.

Tickets are $295 and available online along with hotel information for registrants.

Agroforestry Training Academy

The Agroforestry Training Academy is an intensive educational program designed for agriculture and natural resource professionals and producers to gain an in-depth understanding of agroforestry practices, design concepts, species selection and management, economics and marketing and more.

The Academy offers a 5-week synchronous online course, paired with an optional, three-day, in-person field experience in Columbia and atnearby farms.  

This year’s online Agroforestry Training Academy began in May with the in-person field experience taking place in late-June at perennial specialty crop farms in Mid-Missouri, including The Mother Farm, Rusted Plowshare Farm, Cedar Hill Farm, Green Pastures Farm, and the MU Horticulture and Agroforestry Research Farm.

Registration is currently closed for the 2023 Academy, but those interested should check UMCA’s website in the coming weeks for information on the 2024 Academy.

Joint Conference of the Northern Nut Growers Association, the Chestnut Growers of America and the Walnut Council

The 2023 Northern Nut Growers Association annual conference, hosted in Columbia, Mo., July 23-26, will be a joint meeting with the Chestnut Growers of America and the Walnut Council.  The complete program and registration materials are available on the NNGA website. The joint conference provides a unique opportunity to share ideas across groups interested in nut trees and their products.

Conference topics are designed to interest backyard gardeners and large commercial growers alike. Monday will consist of an all-day field tour of the MU Horticulture and Agroforestry Research Farm, and Tuesday and Wednesday are dedicated to technical presentations and networking opportunities.

Early Bird registration discounts are available until the end of June. Register or learn more online.

The Center for Agroforestry at the University of Missouri, established in 1998, is a preeminent global center contributing to the science and practice underlying agroforestry, which combines trees and shrubs with crops or livestock. Agroforestry practices help landowners create multifunctional working landscapes to provide a wide range of social, ecological, and economic benefits to rural and urban farms, forests, and communities.

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