Small Farm and Beginning Farmer Webinars offer guidance and insight to entrepreneurs

Learn about small-farm topics related to crops, livestock and business management

Are you ready to cultivate your dreams and turn that small plot of land into a thriving and sustainable farm?

Join Iowa State University Extension and Outreach for the Small Farm & Beginning Farmer series, designed exclusively for beginning farmers and small acreage owners.

Hosted by ISU Extension and Outreach in Muscatine County, this series is a combination of informative webinars and hands-on, in-person events. It is tailored to provide essential insight and practical advice for those venturing into farming or seeking to enhance their small-scale agricultural operations.

Each session, led by industry experts and seasoned professionals, covers critical topics relevant to the challenges and opportunities of small-scale farming.

“This series of webinars is a great way for entrepreneurs to access content relevant to their small farm or acreage,” said Christa Hartsook, small farms program manager for Iowa State University Extension and Outreach. “Our March 7 class will cover all aspects of getting started with poultry on the farm. Participants will walk away more confident in caring for new chicks this spring.”

The series continues through December. Other topics include manure management for small farms, sheep and goat management, orchards and commercial vegetable production, and private well stewardship. Each webinar delves deep into pertinent aspects of farm management.

“We’re excited to offer this series tailored specifically to support beginning farmers and small acreages,” said Lauren Nerad, office assistant in Muscatine County. “Our aim is to equip participants with the knowledge, tools and strategies necessary to navigate the challenges and maximize the potential of their agricultural endeavors.”

All webinars start at 6 p.m. and are offered through Zoom.

Dates and topics:
• March 7: Small-Scale Poultry Management
• April 11: Manure Management for Small Farms
• May 9: Sheep and Goat Management: Starting Your Flock
• June 13: Maximizing Pasture Potential: Multispecies Grazing Strategies
• Aug. 29: Sheep and Goat Breeding Management: Maximizing Your Flock’s Potential
• Sept. 12: Working with an Ag Lender
• Oct. 10: Private Well Stewardship for Well Owners
• Nov. 14: Small Orchard Management
• Dec. 12: Getting Started in Commercial Vegetable Production

Registration is open to all and is free. Participants can register for each session at Miss a session? Email Nerad at lnerad@iastate.edufor the link to the recording.

Past session recordings include “Ag Tax Exemptions and Considerations when Filing Taxes;” and “Market Ready: Preparing to Sell at Farmers Markets.”

In-person opportunities and additional webinars will be announced at a later date and will be available at the same link above. For more information, contact Lauren Nerad at 563-263-5701 or