Wallace State’s Small Farmer Training spring/summer courses begin next week

(Photo courtesy of Wallace State Community College)

HANCEVILLE, Ala. – Wallace State Community College’s Small Farmer Training program is offering an exciting variety of courses beginning in April and into the fall semester.

Offerings include online courses, one-day classes and specialized summer camps. A spring plant sale will also be conducted between April 5-30. Sale hours are 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 8 a.m. to noon Tuesday.

Interested individuals can register at www.wallacestate.edu/programs/technical-division/farmer-training/small-farmer-training-courses#.

Travis Kress, Wallace State’s Small Farmer training manager, will first offer a free online Open House session Tuesday, March 16 from 5:30-7 p.m. for those interested in Small Farmer Training.

Small Farmer Training class sessions begin in April and continue through October, featuring online class options on Mondays and live campus classes on Tuesdays. Labs will be conducted Tuesday, covering the same material as the Monday online classes.

Mondays online – 5:30-7 p.m. 

  • Part I: April 5-May 10; $150
  • Part II: May 24-June 28; $150
  • Part III A: July 12-Aug. 2; $100
  • Part III B: Aug. 16-Aug. 23; $50
  • Part IV: Sept. 13-Oct. 18; $150

Tuesdays on campus – 5:30-8:30 p.m. 

  • Part I: April 6-May 11; $250
  • Part II: May 25-June 29; $250
  • Part III A: July 13-Aug. 3; $165
  • Part III B: Aug. 17-Aug. 24; $85
  • Part IV: Sept. 14-Oct. 19; $250

One-day classes will also be held beginning in April, mainly on Wednesdays. Each class is from 8-11:30 a.m. Fee is $40. 

  • Wednesday, April 7: Transplant Production
  • Wednesday, April 14: Fertilizer Calculation and Application
  • Wednesday, April 21: Intro to Soil and Soil Preparation
  • Wednesday, April 28: Plasticulture System Installation
  • Wednesday, May 5: Farm Equipment Operation and Safety
  • Wednesday, May 12: Pesticide Usage and Safety
  • Thursday, May 27: Farm Marketing and Sales
  • Wednesday, June 2: Sprayer Calculation and Calibration
  • Wednesday, June 9: Plant Nutrient Management
  • Wednesday, June 16: Soil Testing and Results Interpretation
  • Wednesday, June 23: Conservation in Agriculture
  • Wednesday, July 7: Irrigation Systems
  • Wednesday, July 14: Pest ID and Management
  • Wednesday, July 21: Vegetable Harvest and Storage
  • Wednesday, July 28: Trap Cropping and Pollinator Habitat
  • Wednesday, Aug. 4: Intro to Greenhouses
  • Wednesday, Aug. 18: Intro to Agriculture Assistance Agencies and Programs
  • Wednesday, Aug. 25: Seasonal High Tunnel Production

Summer camps will be offered for women, young farmers and veterans interested in agriculture.

  • Women’s Camp: May 17-19 from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. and May 20 from 8:30-11:30 a.m. Fee is $200.
  • Young Farmers Camp (Ages 16+): June 28-30 from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. and July 1 from 8:30-11:30 a.m. Fee is $200.
  • Veterans Camp: Aug. 9-11 from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. and Aug. 12 from 8:30-11:30 a.m. Fee is $200.

Gardening continues to grow in popularity, especially as many individuals have adopted the hobby during the COVID-19 pandemic. Kress is a fifth-generation farmer, and through each class, helps participants appreciate the benefits of growing one’s produce- including saving money, eating healthy, relieving stress, staying active and enjoying the satisfaction of the end products.