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Sedgwick County

Sedgwick County
7001 W. 21st Street N.
Wichita, Ks  67205
Map & Location

Office Hours:
8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Monday - Friday

316-660-0100
316-660-0166 fax
sg@listserv.ksu.edu

Growing Growers ICT Program

The Growing Growers ICT program in south central Kansas provides education to new and experienced growers through a farm apprenticeship program and an annual workshop series. Growing Growers ICT is grant-funded through the USDA Specialty Crop Block Grant program. It is operated out of the K-State Research & Extension-Sedgwick County office.

Workshops

The Growing Growers ICT program offers workshops throughout the year that are required for Apprentices, optional for Host Farmers, and open to the public, although class fees will apply. The classes address skills required to run a local farm. The core workshops include introduction to soil management; production planning and plant propagation; post-harvest handling; small farm equipment and drip irrigation; insect, disease, and weed management; and farm business management. Workshops are geared toward beginner farmers, but all the classes offer great information and skill development for more experienced farmers as well.

2019 Workshop Schedule & Registration

April 29th - Building Healthy Soils 

Location: Sedgwick County Extension Education Center (7001 W. 21st St. N, Wichita)

Healthy soil is the foundation of growing great plants and selling great vegetables. Learn the basics of building healthy soil for your farm. The workshop will consist of both classroom instruction on the science of soils and then a farm tour. Topics discussed will include: basic soil science and what's in the soil, using cover crops, no-till farming, and much more!

May 13th - Seedling Production & Crop Planning

Location: Atwater Neighborhood Resource Center (2755 E. 19th St. N, Wichita)

Learn the basics about producing your own seedlings for your farm and how to plan your crop production schedule to meet your farm goals. The workshop will consist of classroom instruction, hands on activities, and a farm tour.

June 10th - Small Farm Equipment & Irrigation

See a wide range of farm equipment and learn how it fits into a farm system. Learn the basics of using drip irrigation and irrigation management on your farm. We will be touring both the Pair Center and Her Produce. Bring pictures or examples of some of your favorite tools to share with others in the class!

Location: John C. Pair Horticulture Research Center (1901 E 95th St S, Haysville)

June 24th - Understanding Specialty Crop Farm Risk - Farm Tour

The tour is part of the Growing Growers ICT workshop series and a Kansas Rural Center project to educate specialty crop growers and agricultural professionals on risk management. While the farm tour will focus primarily on production practices, there will be materials available on crop insurance options and federal loan programs.  The tour is free and open to producers and consumers, and KRC invites crop insurance agents, bankers, FSA and NRCS staff to attend the farm tour to become better acquainted with the new farmers in Kansas: specialty crop growers. 

Location: Firefly Farm at 15615 E. 21st St. N., Wichita, KS

July 22nd - Insect, Disease, and Weed Management

Learn the basic science of insects, weeds, and diseases in order to better control them on your farm. We will cover common insects and diseases of vegetable crops and look at plant samples to aid in diagnostic practice. Then we will tour Meadowlark Farm to practice insect and disease scouting and learn about practical, on-farm pest control.

Location: Atwater Neighborhood Resource Center (2755 E. 19th St. N, Wichita)

August 19th - Postharvest Handling and Food Safety

Learn foundational concepts of handling produce during and after harvest, as well as important food safety procedures. Attendees will hear about practical aspects of harvesting and keeping produce fresh between the field and the market, and will be introduced to safety compliance programs such as FSMA (food safety modernization act) training and GAP (good agricultural practices) certification. After the lecture we will tour Serenity Farm in Sedgwick.

Location: Sedgwick County Extension Education Center, Sunflower Room (7001 W. 21st St. N, Wichita)

September 23rd - Starting a Farm / Farm Business Management

Location: Sedgwick County Extension Education Center (7001 W. 21st St. N, Wichita)

Learn about practical concepts of starting a farm business, from infrastructure considerations to land access to loan options. We will hear from Luke Snow of the Old Town Farmer's Market about his experience and his perspective on what it takes to be a successful grower in our region's market. You'll receive some great resources for attending, and we will tour a farm after the lecture (location TBD.)

Apprenticeships

Apprentices work on fruit & vegetable farms in the south central Kansas region to get first-hand, practical farming experience. They attend the workshops series during the production season, receive one-on-one mentoring with their host farmer, gain hands-on farming experience and informal training, and assist at the Common Ground Mobile Market. Apprenticeship positions can be paid or volunteer.

Learn more about an Apprenticeship with Growing Growers ICT

Interested in working as an Apprentice during the 2019 growing season? Apply here. Due March 4, 2019

Learn more about serving as a Host Farm with Growing Growers ICT

Interested in serving as a Host Farm during the 2019 growing season? Apply here. Due February 4, 2019

Learn more about our Host Farms and community partners (coming soon!)

Important Links

Host Farm Application
Due February 4, 2019 

Apprentice Application
Due March 4, 2019

Contact Information

Have Questions? Contact:

Sedgwick County 
Horticulture
7001 W. 21st St. North
Wichita KS 67205-1759
(316) 660-0144
Fax (316)660-0166

Lyndsay Feather
Growing Growers Program Manager
(316) 660-0145
lfeather@ksu.edu

Rebecca McMahon
Horticultural Food Crops Agent
(316) 660-0142
rmcmahon@ksu.edu

Sharon Ziegler
Office Professional Ag & Hort
(316) 660-0144
sharonz@ksu.edu