Susannah Grove raises vegetables on her family’s farm near Midland.
Three days of workshops will take place this fall for women who own or manage farm and forest land in Fauquier and Loudoun counties.
The American Farmland Trust has collaborated with local conservation partners — USDA Natural Resource Conservation Service, John Marshall Soil and Water Conservation District, and Virginia Tech Cooperative Extension — to organize the program.
The Warrenton “Women and Land” Conservation Learning Circle is part an American Farmland Trust program designed for women landowners who own and make management decisions about property in Virginia.
With more than one million women already operating American farms and a growing number inheriting, starting or taking charge of working farms every day, American Farm Trust has been part of an initiative to address the need for policies and programs specifically targeted for women landowners.
The Warrenton series will focus on strategies that landowners can use to increase their knowledge and experience to set and achieve conservation goals for their land. Discussion topics will include whole farm planning, soil health, erosion and sediment practices, nutrient management, leasing and tenant issues and land protection.
The workshops will take place:
• Wednesday, Sept. 14, at the Virginia Tech MARE Center, 5527, Sullivan’s Mill Road, near Middleburg.
The first session will provide introductions and an overview of conservation.
• Wednesday, Sept. 28, at the Fauquier Education Farm, 8428 Meetze Road, near Warrenton.
The second session will focus on “Farming on the Ground” and conservation programs and practices.
• Wednesday, Oct. 19, location to be determined.
The final session will focus on leasing land, the future of farming and succession planning.
The organizers encourage attendance at all three sessions because landowners will help decide what will gets discussed at each meetings.
Additional support for the “Women and Land” comes from the Prince Charitable Trust, Virginia Environmental Endowment and the Virginia Department of Forestry.