HYDROPONICS AND AQUAPONICS WORKSHOP INCREASES FARM SURFACE AREA IN AN URBAN COUNTY
Commercial Horticulture Agent
University of Florida
Situation and Objective: More than 98% of Seminole County Farms are categorized as small farms and 89% are family owned (Florida Agricultural Statistical Directory, Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services). Farms in the county are encouraged to diversify their crop profile in order to maximize profits. A hydroponics and aquaponics workshop was conducted to educate clientele on concentrated production techniques to increase farm surface area on small acreage. Educational Methods: A combination of local businesses and UF/IFAS specialists educated participants on various aspects of hydroponic and aquaponic production. Businesses represented at the workshop were Village Farms, the largest producer of greenhouse vegetables in the nation, and owners of two small hydroponic operations. Two UF/IFAS specialists presented on the topics of open shade structure production and aquaponic production. The workshop was comprised of three segments: lectures, hands-on demonstrations, and an open discussion. Results: Ninety participants attended the Hydroponics and Aquaponics Workshop in 2013. Participant knowledge of open shade structure hydroponic production and aquaponic production was increased by 56% and 90% respectively. Conclusion: Although the average farm size in Seminole County is small, a potential exists to make a substantial impact through intensive agricultural production. Educational workshops such as the Hydroponics and Aquaponics Workshop help to diversify agricultural operations in an urban county.
Poster has NOT been presented at any previous NACAA AM/PIC
This poster is being submitted for judging. It will be displayed at the AM/PIC if not selected as a State winner. The abstract will be published in the proceedings.
A poster file has not been provided
Authors: M. Lollar, R.C. Hochmuth, R.V. Tyson
Lollar, M. Extension Agent I, University of Florida, Florida, 32773
Hochmuth, R. Extension Agent IV, University of Florida, Florida, 32060
Tyson, R. Extension Agent IV, University of Florida, Florida, 32812