About Farmer Short Courses

Many current and aspiring growers in our network do not have formal agricultural training. For growers whose training took the form of mostly hands-on apprenticeships, there are knowledge gaps which need to be addressed. These skills require more attention than the traditional 60-90 minute time block allotted for example in an ag conference context. YFN has created the Farmer Short Course model to try to address this need.

Course topics are chosen based on the input we receive all season from the network, so please, let us know if there is something you'd like to learn!

Short Courses typically run during the winter months, when most growers have more flexible time. Courses run for a series of weeks and are taught in collaboration with organizations such as URI extension, SCLT, The Carrot Project, NOFA/RI, NOFA/MA, Ground Work, and others. Some Short Courses are run as full day or two-day hands on workshops.


Past, Winter 2017-2018

  • “Beyond the Field: Skills for Farmers”
    • Part 1: Sewing to Repair Your Battered Workwear
    • Part 2: Sharpening Tools
    • Part 3: Welding For Farmers at The Steel Yard
  • Flowering Together: the ins and outs of growing and designing local flowers
  • Wash Station Design within *and* outside of FSMA Produce Safety Regulations
  • Seed Sovereignty Field Day, collaboration with NOFA/Mass


Past, Winter 2016-2017

  • Soil Science and Fertility Management
  • Including Cut Flowers in Your Farm Business
  • Moving Onto Your New Land
    • Assessing and Preparing Land for Farming
    • Composting to Build Fertility on Your Scale
    • Infrastructure Development

Past, Winter 2015-2016

  • Full Day Farm Finance Course
  • Vegetable Pest Identification and Management
  • Small Engine Mechanics with Carl Sawyer of URI
  • Tractor Basics with Chuck Currie of Freedom Food Farm
  • Irrigation and Water Systems


Past, Winter 2014

  • Small engine maintenance and repair
  • Business planning
  • Soil science