Class Outlines


Animal husbandry/milking

The ability of animals to contribute to the functionality and efficiency of a farm is outstanding. They provide an incredible food source in milk and meat, quality compostable manure, field and woodlot management, and hours of entertainment and frustration. When deciding the role animals will play on any farm, there are many important factors to take into consideration. These factors include necessary infrastructure, large amounts of time, desired and expected outputs of the animals (meat, milk, manure etc.), and the long-term responsibilities associated with the care of livestock.


 Biodynamics is not so much a method of farming as it is the training of a farmer to more fully perceive what is happening on his/her farm and how to respond to that perception. It is based on a grander rhythm and a holistic set of principles that goes beyond organics to include considerations of the cosmos, ancient traditions and interacting with your farm as a complete organism. The farmer is the will of the organism, and ultimately the priest. >>FULL CLASS OUTLINE

business 101


 Plenty of good farmers are losing money without knowing it, or are driven out of farming altogether by an inability to keep up with their books, financial statements and day-to-day documentation. Understanding the vocabulary and requirements of good bookkeeping can be daunting, but it is surely one of the most important pieces of a sustainable farm model.



An efficient and active compost system on a farm is a vital resource, turning by-product of waste product into important soil-supporting material.  Composting breaks down organic matter into humus, which when added to soil improves tilth, fertility and biological activity. With a very basic understanding of this living mass, any individual can be successful at composting, having lasting effects on the health of your soil ecosystem. >>FULL CLASS OUTLINE

conservation and ecological agriculture

In addition to producing a harvestable yield, conscientious farmers also seek to protect and conserve natural systems that keep their farm and ecosystem healthy.  This means conserving water, soil health, energy, biodiversity, and more.  Methods include mimicking natural processes, reducing impacts, good stewardship, agro-forestry, incorporating natural areas, conservation tillage techniques, and more.  >>FULL CLASS OUTLINE

cover crops

Cover crops are one of the primary fertility and soil management tools available to the organic farmer, and are an important strategy for preventing nutrient and soil loss from a field. They are crops grown primarily for soil or ecosystem improvement rather than cash and can provide a variety of services, from increased nitrogen (N) input, to soil protection, to weed and disease suppression.  >>FULL CLASS OUTLINE

crop rotation

Crop rotation is the practice of growing a wide variety of crops in a sequential system throughout the field with the intention of avoiding a buildup of disease and pests associated with monocropping. Crop rotation also promotes good soil health by alternating crops with different nutrient needs, therefore avoiding depletion of any one necessary element present in the soil. Crop rotation can also benefit overall soil structure by alternating deep and shallow rooting plants, breaking up subsoil and reducing the effects of plow pan. The practice of crop rotation is ancient in its use, and is widely recognized as a cornerstone of good agricultural practice.m >>FULL CLASS OUTLINE

entomology and integrated pest management

As an organic farmer it is important to understand the balance of insects in an agricultural setting, both beneficial and pest species.  This outline covers the basics of Integrated Pest Management and creating a farm landscape that encourages beneficial insects.  It also helps identify common beneficial and pest species and their various roles on the farm. >>FULL CLASS OUTLINE


Greenhouses are a terrific way to extend the seasons and have greater control over the growing environment.  What type of greenhouse, how to manage greenhouse space, and the various roles of a greenhouse are all factors to consider when choosing the right greenhouse.  Starting transplants inside a greenhouse can help your crops get a jump on the season & the weeds.  There are many factors to consider when propagating plants for transplanting including germination conditions, potting mix, watering, and fertility. >>FULL CLASS OUTLINE

intro to horticulture

Horticulture is the science and art of cultivating fruits, vegetables, and ornamental plants. A basic understanding of horticulture and the factors that may increase or decrease plant growth and development can improve your success in growing plants and inform management decisions on the farm. >>FULL CLASS OUTLINE


An efficient and active compost system on a farm is a vital resource, turning by-product or waste product into important soil-supporting material. Composting breaks down organic matter into humus, which when added to soil improves tilth, fertility and biological activity. With a very basic understanding of this living mass, any individual can be successful at composting, having lasting effects on the health of your soil ecosystem.  >>FULL CLASS OUTLINE

orcharding and perennial crops

Orchards and perennial crops take on a whole different persona than annual crops that are quickly planted, harvested and then tilled under.  Perennial crops require long term visioning in the initial layout and set up, as crops will be in the ground for many years.  Design, maintenance and disease/pest control are major factors in growing and caring for a perennial cropping system. >>FULL CLASS OUTLINE

organizing 101 - food and farm advocacy

As farmers, organizing and activism can take on various forms depending on the purpose, type, and desired outcome.  Whether it is advocating for a policy change or rallying the community together to change culture, organizing and advocacy are at the heart of creating lasting change in our food system. >>FULL CLASS OUTLINE

pasture management and grazing systems

All the best ranchers are good grass farmers - that’s your livelihood when you’re raising grazers. There are several different approaches to rotating and managing pastures to maximize the nutrition and growth through all four seasons, and many different ways to contain and move the animals as well. Understanding these and how they interact with the rest of your farm system is crucial. >>FULL CLASS OUTLINE



Permaculture is a system of agricultural and social design principles that outline a truly sustainable and self-sufficient settlement practice. It examines and follows nature’s patterns and allows a farm to begin to care for itself the way other ecosystems do.  >>FULL CLASS OUTLINE

plant pathogens

 When disease hits a crop on your farm it can be unexpected and devastating. Learning how to prevent, diagnose and treat your crops when this happens could mean the difference between a profit and a loss. >>FULL CLASS OUTLINE

post-harvest handling and food safety


So you’ve grown beautiful produce, now what? What are the best practices for harvesting, washing and storing your crops? And what are you required to pay attention to throughout that process? This class will dive into each of these topics and more, so your crops can safely & efficiently make it into the hands of the hungry masses. >>FULL CLASS OUTLINE

poultry management


 Chickens, ducks, turkeys, geese, quail and other fowl can be an excellent niche market and a great way to bring diversity and fertility to a farm system. They can be raised for meat, eggs, feathers, pest and pasture management - plus they’re pretty fun to watch! Poultry is the second most widely eaten meat globally, and eggs are an incredibly rich source of high-quality protein with a low proportion of fat. Incorporating this into a whole farm system can greatly benefit the farmer and the soil. >>FULL CLASS OUTLINE

seed saving and seed stewardship


Saving your own seed can be a profound act of social and ecological empowerment.  In saving seed, you are preserving agricultural biodiversity and selecting for desired traits.  Establishing a basic understanding of the fundamentals of botany and breeding, you can dive deep into the art of saving seed and discover endless possibilities. >>FULL CLASS OUTLINE

soil science

The soil is the life force of the farm; farmers rely heavily on it to perform and provide, often year-round. Understanding the characteristics of your soil can inform planting, irrigation, amendment and cover crop decisions, as well as how you care for your soil health on a long-term scale. It also plays a larger role in the health of a watershed or regional eco-system by combating erosion and nutrient pollution in our streams and rivers. Individuals who study and pay close attention to their soil’s structure and content will see significantly higher yields, lower water usage, more nutrient-rich produce, and easier, lighter field work.  >>FULL CLASS OUTLINE


Tractors are awesome. They are incredibly valuable and important tools on most farms, and should be celebrated! It’s also important to remember that there’s a time and a place for using them, they can be very dangerous, they run on fossil fuels and they can be costly to fix…so use them wisely and take good care of them!  >>FULL CLASS OUTLINE

weed management

Weed Managment.jpg

Weeds can greatly effect the yield and quality of crops because they compete for nutrients, light and water.  There are many effective ways to manage weeds from tractor cultivation to stale bedding to mulching and flame weeding.  Weeding can become a labor intensive nightmare, so proper weed prevention and management strategies are key in growing a healthy crop.  >>FULL CLASS OUTLINE

winter farming

Due to Oregon’s mild winters, many crops can be grown year round, as the ground does not generally freeze.  Having food to harvest in the winter requires extra planning and summer planting to ensure a healthy harvest in the winter when light levels drop.  Winter farming presents its own unique set of challenges as well as opportunities. >>FULL CLASS OUTLINE