Carbon Farming & Economy Courses - Santa Barbara

Improving land management with leading edge technology and holistic practices

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Soil Food Web Training Agenda

Soil Foodweb Course Agenda With Elaine Ingham, PhD
October 30-November 1: Soil Foodweb - Compost Technology - Compost Tea Technology

Overview: The training begins Friday, October 30 at 9am and ends Sunday, November 1 at 5pm. Please arrive by 8:30am (or by 8am if you wish to join in breakfast) on Friday, October 30. Checkins are 8:30-9:00am on the first day of class. Catering begins with breakfast on Oct 30th served at 8am, and ends with lunch on Nov 1. Participants are welcome to arrive to Orella Ranch on Thursday, Oct 29th between 4pm and 7pm, and to stay on site if needed on Sunday night, Nov 1, for departures the next morning, noting that you would be responsible for your own meals outside of those that are catered.

Recommended Materials: Notebook, pen, pencil.


Introduction to the Soil Foodweb October 30 (9am-5pm)

What is Biological Farming? Examples
Soil Foodweb Principles

The Soil Foodweb: Myths, Roots, Compaction, Calcium


Disease Suppression

Nutrient Retention including C:N

Foodweb Picture

Nutrient Cycling

Soil Structure – Who builds which parts?

Complexity revisited



Microscope Demonstrations

System-by-System Approaches


Data Needed to fix things biologically

Compost Technology October 31 (9am-5pm)

Prerequisite: Introduction to Soil Foodweb Workshop or Equivalent

Review of Important Soil Foodweb Concepts

_ The right organisms for the plant desired

_ The right food for the plant desired

Making Thermal Compost: Important Parameters

_ Starting materials, temperature, aeration, turning and particle size

_ Commercial recipes approach

_ Small scale approach

_ Home owner approach

The Important Parameters in Making:

_ Worm Compost

_ In-Vessel Composting

_ Static Composting

Definition of Good Compost

_ Immature versus mature compost

_ Stability

_ Compost standards

How to Determine Whether Soil Needs Compost

_ Rates of decomposition, smell, color

_ When to do organism assays and which assays to run

_ Does your soil have the right organisms in the right numbers?

Field Approach: Vegetables, Lawns, Orchards, Vineyards

Field Approach: Thermal and Worm Compost Farms

Compost Tea Technology November 1 (9am-5pm)

Prerequisites: Introduction to Soil Foodweb Workshop; Compost Technology Workshop

Definition of Good Tea

_ Maturity, stability, E. Coli, Standards

_ Aerated Compost Tea versus Not-Aerated Tea

_ Plant Tea, etc.

Making Compost Tea: Essential Components

_ The brewing cycle, the right compost, extraction, aeration, water source, recipes, growing fungi, E. coli


_ Recipes

The Important Parameters in Testing Compost Tea

Determining Whether Plants Need Compost Tea

_ Rates of decomposition, smell, color

_ When to do organism assays, which assays to run

_ Does your foliage have enough of the right organisms?

Altering the Foodweb in Soil & on Plant Surfaces

_ The right organisms for the plant desired

_ Bacterial or fungal dominated tea?

_ The right foods for the plant desired

_ Commercial products

How to Use Compost Tea in a Successful Program

_ Turf

_ Landscape

_ Orchard

_ Row Crops/Vegetables

Microscope Demonstration of Different Teas



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