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Deep winter greenhouse field day set in Pillager

PILLAGER—The Central Regional Sustainable Development Partnership and Grampa G's Farm will host a public field day at a deep winter greenhouse to demonstrate the production process and discuss ongoing horticultural and economic research results.

The field day is from noon to 3 p.m. Saturday, May 4, at Grampa G's Farm, 207 W. Highway 210, Pillager. The event includes presentations about deep winter greenhouses and university research, hands-on workshops and a tour and a question-and-answer period. The event is free to the public. RSVPs are requested at https://dwg_field_day_pillager.eventbrite.com

"Deep winter greenhouses represent a future of local foods that will come from innovations to expand markets and the production season," said Greg Schweser, director of sustainable agriculture and food systems for the University of Minnesota Extension Regional Sustainable Development Partnerships, in a news release.

Deep winter greenhouses allow small farms to grow vegetable crops year-round. The unique design features a steeply sloped south-facing glazing wall that allows the maximum amount of solar radiation into the greenhouse on the coldest day of the year. That hot air is drawn underground into a heavily insulated bed of crushed rock where it is available for use to heat the growing space at night. Farmers are able to grow cold hardy, low light crops like lettuce, Asian greens and brassicas with minimal use of external heat and lights.

This field day is part of a statewide deep winter greenhouse project led by the University of Minnesota Extension Regional Sustainable Development Partnerships and is funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture's North Central Region Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education program. The program connects University of Minnesota researchers with deep winter greenhouse producers to study best growing options and to better understand the economics of small-scale deep winter greenhouse production.

The University of Minnesota provides information and resources on deep winter greenhouses at https://z.umn.edu/deepwintergreenhouse.