Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Farm Weddings

Keller’s Country Weddings in Dickson, TN started in March of 2011. They built a barn just for weddings and in the first year hosted four weddings and have 14 scheduled for the 2014 year.

They offer the bride and groom a choice of three wedding plans: the farm hand package, the farmer’s cousin package and the farmer’s daughter package.

The farm hand package is for the budget minded and includes a barn with benches for the wedding. The farmer’s cousin package includes barn with benches, picnic tables, serving tables, an old wagon and a wooden arch.  The farmer’s daughter’s package is identical to the previous but also adds a 30 x 60 tent and more tables for a larger crowd.

To learn more click here.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Preparing Home Kitchen Recipes for the Grocery Store

Transforming home kitchen recipes into products that can be sold in stores involves more science than some people may realize. Fortunately for LSU AgCenter Food Incubator tenants, food scientist Luis Espinoza is on hand to help them do everything from keeping better records to making a product all natural.

The Food Incubator offers tenants the equipment and expertise they need to develop unique food products and get them on store shelves.

Many tenants come to the incubator so they can make and sell larger quantities of their products. Doing so requires scaling up their recipes, but it's not as simple as increasing an amount from two tablespoons to 40, for example.    To learn more click here.          

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Teen Workers

I just had the opportunity to attend some of the  "Agritourism Manager Boot Camp FREE Preview," today and found all the topics about teenage employees very helpful. Today's free session provided insight into how to motivate teenagers to get their best when they work for you.  

Hugh McPherson, author of the program, can be contacted by clicking here.  As the agritourism coordinator for the LSU AgCenter, I like to bring resources to you for your consideration; this is not an endorsement, but a suggestion to check it out.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Agritourism Connection Newsletter Online

A quarterly e-newsletter providing information on how to start, grow or sustain your agritourism venture is available on our website:

Topics covered in this newsletter include: recognition of Thornwell by Louisiana House of Representatives as the Yellow Rail Capital of the World and Home of the Yellow Rails and Rice Festival; registering farmers markets online;  Louisiana Direct Seafood; international tourists; Women in Agriculture Farm Tour; and Annie’s Project.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Hiring, Managing and Training Teens in Agritourism

Jane Eckert in a recent e-mail shared that Hugh McPherson of Maize Quest has created Agritourism Manager Boot Camp, a course available with a computer.

Eckert said, “The program has 8 individual modules, each of which addresses different aspects of the employee management system. This boot camp includes the worksheets, online videos and a group workspace system that is customizable for your farm.”

A FREE Webinar scheduled for 1 p.m. central time on Tuesday, April 22nd will provide information. Simply go to: and register to participate.

Send your questions to Hugh at or 866-WE-LOSE-U Ext 102

Friday, April 11, 2014

Urban gardening project starts in New Orleans

Mark your calendar if you are in the New Orleans area to attend a ribbon-cutting ceremony on April 23 at 11 a.m. at a new LSU AgCenter vegetable plot located  next door to the New Orleans Convention Center on the corner of Tchoupitoulas and Henderson St. 

For the next two years tomato research will be conducted on the one-quarter acre plot to evaluate commercial fertilizers over organic types in vegetable gardening, according to LSU AgCenter assistant director Bobby Fletcher.
Fletcher will evaluate the effectiveness and economics of organic fertilizer and monitor disease. For more, click here.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Garden Expo in Alexandria

2014 Central Louisiana Garden Expo 
Educational Program
State Evacuation Shelter
8125 Hwy 71 -- Alexandria, LA  71302

                                            FRIDAY, APRIL 11, 2014
                                              9:00 a.m. to 4:10 p.m.

Morning Topics:

Dr. Kathryn Fontenot                 
Growing Your Groceries

Mr. Dan Gill                                               
Outstanding Bedding Plants for Summer Color

Dr. Alan Morgan    
Insect Management in the Home Vegetable Garden
LUNCH (on your own)

Afternoon Topics:

Dr. Charlie Graham
Dr. Achyut Adhikari                    
Food Safety Modernization Act
Dr. Melanie Ivey
Integrated Disease Management for Sustainable
Vegetable Production in Louisiana – A Winning Approach

Dr. Ron Strahan
Weed Management in Home Landscapes

Mr. Miles Brashier
Organic Pesticides

                                            Saturday , APRIL 12, 2014
9:00 a.m. to Noon


 Mr. Terry Washington
Planting Louisiana recommended shrubs and trees around the home

Mr. J Stevens
The Reason to do a Soil Test

Master Gardener Presentations
 Mr. Johnnie Hart
 (Vermiculture) Worm Gardening

Mrs. Cynthia Flanders
Lasagna Gardening

Admission to the garden expo is $2. 


Monday, April 7, 2014

Thornwell Designated Yellow Rail Capital of the World by Louisiana Legislature

For six years a dedicated group of birders and rice farmers have worked together to host the Yellow Rails and Rice Festival in Thornwell. The festival draws people from all over the world to see this Yellow Rail bird that enjoys rice fields. This year the Louisiana Legislature named Thornwell the Yellow Rail Capital of the World, click here for the entire resolution.