The Bahamas Weekly Facebook The Bahamas Weekly Twitter
Columns : Let's Grow Bahamas Last Updated: Jun 20, 2014 - 5:05:44 PM


My Visit to the Small Farm Conference in Orlando
By Luckner Timothee
Aug 17, 2012 - 10:55:05 AM

Email this article
 Printer friendly page
FARM_ANIM.gif

There are many farming expos that take place around the world at any given week.  Recently I was fortunate enough to visit “The Florida Small Farms and Alternative Enterprise Conference" in Orlando.  The hosts of this event were two land grant universities, the University of Florida and Florida A & M University.  This is the 4th year of this event under the theme “Educating Entrepreneurs to Strengthen Local Food Systems. “

With over 800 persons in attendance, there was much excitement among both the participants and audience alike.  The buzz in the room felt electric, as if a rock star was about to perform and I must say they did not let us down.   Undoubtedly, this was one of the best decisions I made for the year. I would recommend visiting this event to anyone interested in farming—both big industry guys, and beginners alike.

The diverse speakers at the event did an outstanding job of keeping the audience begging for more. It started with Friday’s session under the theme, “Starting and Managing Successful Farmer’s Markets“. The focus was well detailed about the markets in Florida, their growth as well as the many challenges they continue to face.  This session’s speakers all got high marks from me.

The 3 day event covered every aspect of farming from the ground up; from hydroponics, organics, drip irrigation, cut flowers/ foliage production, livestock and poultry production to biological and chemical insect control just to name a few.  My personal favorite was the session on the identification of “good bugs and bad bugs”, particularly since the biggest problem in my backyard garden is bugs,  for as any organic backyard farmer will tell you bugs are both a blessing and a curse and the identification of these bugs is of the utmost importance.

217860_429365953772758_526242132_n.jpg

We were given a real time pop-quiz both at the beginning and at the end of the session, making it one of the most interactive sessions of them all.  We were even able to get an up close look at these bugs under a microscope as well as view video material of the same.

From my perspective, the “must see”  of the event was the Renewable Energy session that included a bio-diesel truck demonstration and wood-powered vehicle. This particular truck runs on old scraps of wood with a furnace built in the back which supplies the power that makes it run smoother than my present vehicle; plus you get 50 miles from the waste material that would have ended up in our landfills.  This is spectacular ingenuity at its best.

The great thing about this event went far beyond the vast amount of information shared by the presenters.  It was about how the information was broken down, step by step, and the willingness of the experts to go beyond what was expected; sharing the good, the bad and the ugly side of an industry which has the potential to make or break a nation.  I would advise anyone who is interested in farming to visit this expo next year or any expo for that matter. It’s inspiring and empowering to have a panel of enthusiastic, hands-on farming pioneers share their stories, struggles and triumphs.

I would gladly visit The Small Farm Conference every year and invite my friends to do the same.

More info: The Florida Small Farms and Alternative Enterprise Conference


About the Author: Luckner Timothee is a backyard Farmer in Grand Bahama since starting his garden a few years ago he has wooed his friends with his produce and creative farming ideas. He continually learns from his friends and family about the process of farming and the struggles that a farmer goes through daily. He is now working on a Web show called “Let’s Grow Bahamas” to be released on “Grand Bahama Backyard Farmers”. He is attending seminars in order to meet other farmers around the world and to further his knowledge about Farming. To contact Luckner Timothee email him at:
bahamafarmers@live.com




403876_10151969029055008_693064104_n.jpg



Bookmark and Share


© Copyright 2012 by thebahamasweekly.com

Top of Page

Let's Grow Bahamas
Latest Headlines
Potentially Toxic GAS, "Giant African Snail"
The Calabash Tree
Far from your average Grower!
The Natal Plum: Enjoy with Caution
Let's Grow Bahamas October Almanac
The Fungi and its connection to my Garden
Let's Grow Bahamas Almanac
The Cassava (Yuca)
Golden Girls - Golden Knights - The Golden Dorsett
Purslane: One of the Most Nutritionist Weeds
Why our soil might be the most precious commodity we have!
It's Harvest Time, Baby!
Bush Medicine: Match Me if You Can (Jacob's Coat)
Bananas: The Super Fruit that is an Absolute Must for Your Garden
Guava, the "poor man's fruit"
Fever Grass: Not Your Usual “Cup of Tea”
Bush Medicine: In Nature, Everything Has a Purpose!
The Farmer's Almanac for The Bahamas: Growing from August through October
Fruit Tree of the Month: Jack Fruit
My Visit to the Small Farm Conference in Orlando
An Introduction to Goat and Sheep Production in The Bahamas
Why Start a Backyard Garden?