Iowa State University Extension and Outreach will host a series of meetings this fall for growers producing crops in high tunnels. Two meeting sites will offer the beginning "High Tunnel 101" workshop to current commercial fruit or vegetable growers and traditional farmers interested in diversifying their production. Topics to be covered at the workshop include site and high tunnel selection, construction, soil management, irrigation, pest management, bed design and cropping systems. A high tunnel manual also will be provided.
A second set of workshops, "Advance High Tunnel Tomato Production," will be offered for growers already using a high tunnel structure in their production system, or advanced high tunnel training. Topics to be covered include environmental control, nutrient management, foliar sampling, hands-on grafting practice, production budgets, and succession plantings for maximum efficiency.
High tunnels are inexpensive, simple, passive-solar greenhouses in which crops are grown directly in the soil. They allow growers to extend the season and produce high yields of quality produce earlier than field-grown crops, thus commanding a higher price at market.
Pre-registration is required for all workshops by calling the Dallas County Extension and Outreach office at 515-993-4281 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Fees for each workshop are $55 per person or $90 per couple (or employees of the same farm), and includes a resource guide, lunch and refreshments.
High Tunnel 101
Adel Public Library, 303 South 10th St., in Adel
Oct. 29, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Registration deadline: Oct. 23
Advance High Tunnel Tomato Production
Dallas Center Memorial Hall, 1502 Walnut St., in Dallas Center
Nov. 16, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Registration deadline: Nov. 12