Welcome to the Kerr Center for Sustainable Agriculture

News and Recent Publications


Free Webinar: Federal Funding & Financing for Farmers @ ONLINE
May 23 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm
Free Webinar: Federal Funding & Financing for Farmers @ ONLINE

Learn more about the USDA loan, grant, cost-share, conservation, and insurance programs that are available to sustainable farmers. NSAC’s Ferd Hoefner will give an overview of the many programs offered by the USDA that help farmers succeed.

Elderberry Workshop & Field Tour @ Jefferson City, MO (The Carver Center)
May 31 – Jun 2 all-day
Elderberry Workshop & Field Tour @ Jefferson City, MO (The Carver Center) | Jefferson City | Missouri | United States

New Grower’s Workshop

From 1 to 5 pm on Wednesday, May 31, 2017, at the Carver Center.

If you are new to growing elderberries this is the workshop that will get you started on the right track. You’ll get all the basics, how to prepare your soil, the best orientation for rows, how to use the dynamic growing methods that help keep diseases and pests to a minimum, the precautions that must be taken in harvesting and using elderberries, as well as which selections offer you the product you want, based on your needs and desires.

This intensive, hands-on workshop offers you a first chance to learn a lot in a short time, and have your questions answered in a small group setting.

Growers Workshop & Field Tours


8:00        Onsite Check-in

9:00        Intro and Welcome – Terry Durham

9:15         Fertility Study Results

Patrick Byers, Regional Horticulture Specialist-SW Region, Greene County Extension Office, University of Missouri Extension, Springfield, MO

10:15        Break

10:30        Cyanide Research on Elderberry Update 

Andrew Thomas, Research Assistant Professor, Horticulture/Agroforestry at University of Missouri’s Southwest Research Center, Mt. Vernon

11:30        The Impact of Rust on Elderberry Plant Growth & Fruiting 

Michele Warmund, Professor of Horticulture and State Fruit Extension                   Specialist, Division of Plant Sciences, University of Missouri, Columbia


1:45          Electric Deer Fencing

Mike Anderson, Consulting for Farmers and Ranchers, Lincoln, Nebraska

2:30           Protecting Your Elderberry Investment with Crop Insurance

John Schreiter, Whole Farm Revenue Protection Specialist, Nebraska                             City, Nebraska

3:00           Break

3:15          Spotted Winged Drosophila

Patrick Byers, Regional Horticulture Specialist-SW Region, Greene County Extension Office, University of Missouri Extension, Springfield, MO

4:00          Farmer’s Forum: A selection of elderberry growers 

Frank Gordon, Missouri; Louis Tolly, ; Chris Patton, Minnesota; Bob McCord, Arkansas

4:45             Elderberry Happy Hour & Trade Show

6:00             Terry Durham/Hank Water’s Field Tour

FRIDAY, June 2

9:00               NRCS/GAP Cost Share

Lauren Cartwright, Missouri State Economist, National Resources Conservation Services

10:00             Elderflower Work in Minnesota

                                    Dr. William Marsh, 

10:30              Elderflowers: Things to know about harvesting a flower crop

11:00              Still Learning: Elderflower Production & Preservation 

Katie Reneker, Carmel Berry Company, Carmel Valley, CA                            

12:00               LUNCH — CHRIS PATTON: How to sell a growing elderberry harvest 


To register or for more information, contact Deni Phillips at (573) 424-9693 or

South-Central Monarch Symposium @ Austin, TX
May 31 – Jun 1 all-day
South-Central Monarch Symposium @ Austin, TX | Austin | Texas | United States

Join conservation practitioners sharing research and best practices to develop a comprehensive partner conservation strategy for the South-Central Great Plains region to aid in the recovery of the monarch butterfly.

For more information, contact Amy Snelgrove at

Native Plant Materials for Oklahoma @ Wes Watkins Center, Room 110 - OSU (Stillwater)
May 31 @ 8:30 am – 4:45 pm
Native Plant Materials for Oklahoma @ Wes Watkins Center, Room 110 - OSU (Stillwater) | Stillwater | Oklahoma | United States

Register by May 19

Oklahoma State University’s Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture is hosting the Native Plants Conference May 31 at the Wes Watkins Center in Stillwater, Oklahoma.

The conference is geared toward anyone who is interested in native plants, and especially those in the many different professions that deal with growing, maintaining and designing with plant material.

This conference will cover a wide variety of topics and feature both OSU and industry professionals. Some of the topics on the agenda include conifers, nativars for the landscape, gardening with natives, landscape design challenges using native plants and sowing seed.

The $85 registration, due by May 19, includes lunch. The Botanic Garden/Friends of the Garden members, Master Gardeners, county Extension educators, Linnaeus Gardeners, and students may register for $65. Online registration is available here.

Mike Schnelle, OSU Cooperative Extension floriculture specialist, said the conference will provide a forum for the landscape industry to discuss native plant availability and a path to support growers to participate with markets in the central plains and adjacent regions.

“This conference also will help set the groundwork for further assistance to the green industry profitability by expanding the plant palette inventory to meet the landscape architecture and horticulture demand,” Schnelle said.

The conference offers Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food and Forestry and landscape architects six continuing education units.

For more information, contact Stephanie Larimer at 405-744-5404 or email at

Download the flyer (PDF, 500 KB)


8:30 – 8:45 a.m.
Opening Remarks
Cheryl Mihalko, Assistant Professor, and Mike Schnelle, Extension Specialist
Horticulture and Landscape Architecture
Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK

8:45 – 9:15 a.m.
Nativars for Oklahoma Landscapes: Pros & Cons from the Oklahoma Green Industry to the End Consumer
Mike Schnelle, Extension Specialist

9:15 – 10:15 a.m.
Conifers Once Ruled the World
Gerald Klingaman, Operations Director
Botanical Garden of the Ozarks, Fayetteville, AR

10:15 – 10:35 a.m. Break
Showcase I: Prairie Wind Nursery
Bill Farris
Noble, OK

10:35 – 11:05 a.m.
Native Plants/Native Pollinators A Focus on Oklahoma Natives
David Redhage, President/CEO
Kerr Center for Sustainable Agriculture, Poteau, OK

11:05 – 11:40 a.m.
Gardening with Natives: Ecoregional Considerations?
Bruce Hoagland, Plant Ecologist,
University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK

11:40 a.m. – 12:45 p.m.
Lunch & Networking

12:45 – 1:45 p.m.
Native Plants Panel Discussion
(speaker-attendee interactive session)
Cheryl Mihalko & Mike Schnelle, moderators

1:45 – 2:20 p.m.
Landscape Design Challenges Using Native Plants
David Redhage

2:20 – 3:00 p.m.
Gardening with Natives: Ecoregional Considerations Part II
Bruce Hoagland

3:00 – 3:15 p.m.

Showcase II: Olthia Urban Prairie Gardens
Jamie Csizmadia, Edmond

3:15 – 3:45 p.m.
They’re Here: The Threat of Emerald Ash Borer to Oklahoma
Eric Rebek, Extension Specialist Entomology and Plant Pathology
Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK

3:45 – 4:30 p.m.
Sowing Seed: Harnessing Nature’s Abundance to Create Habitat at Home
Jamie Csizmadia, Landscape Architect
Olthia Urban Prairie Gardens, Edmond, OK

4:30 – 4:45 p.m.

4:45 p.m.
Conference Ends

Workshop: Growing Communities @ Tulsa (OU-Tulsa Innovation Commons Schusterman Center)
Jun 1 @ 9:00 am – Jun 2 @ 5:00 pm
Workshop: Growing Communities @ Tulsa (OU-Tulsa Innovation Commons Schusterman Center) | Tulsa | Oklahoma | United States

A session of the American Community Gardening Association’s nationally known Growing Communities train-the-trainer workshop will be held in Tulsa, Oklahoma, at the Innovation Commons in the Schusterman Center at the Oklahoma University-Tulsa campus.

Growing Communities is an in-depth two-day interactive workshop where participants learn community organizing and leadership skills to create strong community gardening programs. Specific topics include: community organizing, leadership development, grassroots fundraising, communications planning, coalition building, asset based community development, meeting facilitation, and developing a board of directors. Meet people interested in community gardening, leave with new ideas and have fun!

Global Gardens, Tulsa Food Security Council, and Tulsa Community Garden Association are hosting this event.

The $10 registration fee includes breakfast, lunch, and refreshments for 2 days, the Growing Communities Curriculum ($35 value), and ACGA membership ($45 value).

Advanced registration is required. Registration is on a first-come, first-serve basis.

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