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People who have purchased or inherited a small farm but donít know how to work the land will learn the basics of agriculture during a 15-week educational program sponsored by the Purdue University Cooperative Extension Service.

Living On the Land: Stewardship for Small Acreages is a beginnerís course in soils, machinery, crops, livestock, management and more. Part 1 meets Mondays from Sept. 27 to Nov. 22, with Part 2 convening on Thursdays from March 3 to April 7, 2011. Class times are 6:30-9 p.m. Eastern and 5:30-8 p.m. Central.

Nine Purdue Extension county offices and a Purdue agricultural research farm will host Part 1. Purdue Extension specialists and agricultural industry professionals will teach the course, through a combination of streamed Internet and live presentations.

"I call this a freshman vo-ag class for adults," said Steve Engleking, LaGrange County Purdue Extension educator and program coordinator.

"The gist of this is we have more and more people in Indiana moving to small acreages in rural areas. We have lifestyle farmers and entrepreneurial small farmers. Some might want to make money off of their farms, and others are more interested in hobby-type farming. This course will help both groups learn what they need to learn about agriculture."

The Part 1 schedule: Sept. 27, "Getting Started"; Oct. 4, "Ecological Soil Management"; Oct. 11, "Choosing a Production System"; Oct. 18, "Farm Machinery and Equipment"; Oct. 25, "Basics of Crop Production"; Nov. 1, "Exploring Crop Enterprises"; Nov. 8, "Basics of Livestock Production"; Nov. 15, "Exploring Livestock Needs"; and Nov. 22, "Small Farm Tour."

Part 2 classes: March 3, "Business Structures"; March 10, "Small Farm Financial Management"; March 17, "Managing Small Farm Risks"; March 24, "Legal and Regulatory Issues"; March 31, "Marketing What You Produce"; and April 7, "Small Farm Tour."

The Nov. 22 and April 7 tours take place at operating small farms near host sites.

Purdue Extension county offices and hosts for Part 1 include:

* DeKalb County, 215 E. Ninth St., Auburn - Elysia Berry, 260-925-2562, eberry@purdue.edu

* Delaware County, 101 W. Main St., Muncie - Daisy Fryman, 765-749-7732, dfryman@purdue.edu

* Floyd County, 3000 Technology Ave., New Albany - Tom Springstun, 812-948-5470, tsprings@purdue.edu

* Hamilton County, 2003 Pleasant St., Noblesville - William Rice, 317-776-0854, billrice@purdue.edu

* Knox County, 4367 N. Purdue Road, Vincennes - Stacye Johnson, 812-882-3509, johns227@purdue.edu

* Kosciusko County, 202 W. Main St., Warsaw - Kelly Heckaman, 574-372-2340, kheckaman@purdue.edu

* Marshall County, 304 Marshall County Building, 112 W. Jefferson, Plymouth - Robert Yoder, 574-935-8545, ryoder@purdue.edu

* Vigo County, 275 Ohio St., Terre Haute - Jim Luzar, 812-462-3371, luzar@purdue.edu

* Wabash County, 1 W. Hill St., Wabash - Curtis Campbell, 260-563-0661, cecampbell@purdue.edu

Pinney-Purdue Agricultural Center in LaPorte County also is a Part 1 site. Pinney-Purdue is at 11402 S. County Line Road, Wanatah. The host is Gene Matzat, 219-324-9407, ematzat@purdue.edu.

Part 2 sites and hosts will be announced.

Registration is $150 per person per part, or $200 per part for two people from the same farm. Registration for both parts is $250 per person, or $300 for two people from the same farm. Fees include all course materials and small farm tours.

A brochure with more information and a program registration form is available online at http://www.ag.purdue.edu/counties/lagrange/Brochures/PurdueLOTL 2010.pdf

Additional information also is available by contacting Engleking at 260-499-6334, sengleking@purdue.edu.

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