The Woodward News

June 15, 2014

Local farm hosts annual agro ecology walking tour

Anita Roach
Woodward News

Woodward, Okla. — The Anichini-Moore Ranch and Farm hosted it's 5th annual Agro Ecology Walking Farm Tour last week. The ranch, owned by Kathy Moore, and located south of Woodward, is dedicated to the research of sustainable agriculture.

The walking tour was attended by approximately 100 people, coming from as far away as Lubbock, Texas. Participants included students attending OSU Camp T.U.R.F. in Stillwater.

The tour began around noon with agricultural presentations and demonstrations. Presenters were from many facets of the agricultural business including OSU, the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education organization (SARE), Langston University, Black Historical Society, and Woodward Conservation District. Speakers touched on goat milk and goat milk products as value-added food products, Value Added Natural Resources, Rain Water Harvesting, SARE Grants Opportunities, and many more subjects. Demonstrations were given in Green Seeder (jab planter), Fabric Pots, Salsco Wood Chipper, and Planned Grazing, Supplemental Irrigation and Improved Livestock Performance Rotational Grazing.

"The walking tour is designed to show the benefits of growing in cooperation with nature and why it matters to recycle organic debris to rebuild soils, share what we are learning through on-farm experiments and demonstrations, foster opportunities to work alongside scientists and students, and cultivate understanding and community connections," according to information provided by tour organizers. "Our mission is to facilitate research and demonstrations that educate visitors about innovative practices and career opportunities available in sustainable agricultural for students and beginning farmers of all ages."

“Oh my gosh, yes!” Moore said when asked if she was pleased with the outcome. "We had new people and the tried and true. The important thing is not about me, It’s about bringing people together. It’s about community learning from each other. Farmers learning from scientist and scientists learning from farmers.”

Camp T.U.R.F. (Tomorrow's Undergraduates Realizing the Future) was a concept developed by Dr. Shelley Mitchell, OSU Extension Associate, 4-H and Youth Programs. The Camp is a 2-week residential academy allowing students to interact with professors and explore a variety of careers in horticulture. All Camp expenses except transportation to and from the OSU campus are paid for by Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education.

"The academy is open to all Oklahoma students entering the school year as freshmen or sophomores and are the first in their family to attend college," Dr. Mitchell said. "I can hardly believe this year's camp is almost over and the kids will be going home. I am almost ready to cry!"