A SARE Topic Room is an organized collection of mostly SARE-based, multi-media information on important topics in sustainable agriculture. Click on any of the topics below to start learning!
NOTE: Visiting some of the Topic Rooms below will take you to the SARE Nationwide website (www.sare.org).
Since 1997, researchers and producers across the Texas High Plains have been developing integrated crop/livestock production systems that address the growing need for water conservation, while keeping soils fertile, crop yields profitable, cattle production thriving, and surrounding communities viable. These publications and resource tools are a compilation of these ongoing efforts, showcasing the results of long-term systems research and how those results are being translated into practical field production practices and sustainable agriculture applications.
According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service, the Southern region has over 200 million acres of forestland, with nearly 90 percent of it privately owned. Forestland in the South is some of the most dynamic, diverse and productive in the nation, and is a major agricultural revenue driver for many Southern states, contributing $200 billion annually to the nation's economy. Many forestland owners assume timber harvesting is the only way to make money from their land. But non-timber products, such as pine straw, hunting leases and agroforestry, serve as additional revenue streams. In addition, the Southern region has a great potential for developing various agroforestry practices because of the region's suitable environment to support all components of the system. This Southern region SARE topic room includes a collection of educational materials developed out of SARE-funded forestry and agroforestry research for those interested in sustainable ag practices of forest and woodland management, and the integration of forestland with crops and livestock.
SARE has a long history of supporting pollinators through grant-funded projects and practical resources that focus on pest and disease management, beekeeping practices, bee breeding, habitat development and management, and incorporating bees in sustainable production practices. Through such sustainable research and education, the sustainability of beekeeping practices, the sustainable relationship between pollinators and the environment, and the development of profitable marketing and value-added activities and products generated from the work of bees are consistently being reinforced. This Southern region SARE topic room includes a collection of educational materials, such as articles, videos, publications and Power Point presentations, developed out of SARE-funded pollinator research for those interested in bees and beekeeping.
Aquaculture -- the farming of aquatic organisms -- is a $1.4 billion industry throughout the United States, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture 2013 Census. Here in the Southern region, the value of aquaculture products -- including food fish, baitfish, shellfish, and other aquaculture products -- amounts to around $26 million. Commercial aquaculture is a solid, traditional industry. However, interest is growing in the areas of alternative fish farming, small-scale aquaculture and water gardening, also known as aquaponics. Aquaculture is an attractive alternative farming enterprise for many farmers for a number of reasons. This topic room includes a collection of educational materials, such as articles and videos, developed out of Southern SARE-funded aquaculture research for those interested in fish farming, or incorporating fish into a crop production system.
Sheep, goat and other small ruminant enterprises offer many advantages for both beginning and experienced farmers. Small and productive, they are well suited to grass-based and small-scale agriculture. They are relatively inexpensive compared to larger livestock -- a boon for limited-resource producers. And a growing market is opening the doors for value-added opportunities. Learn more about Southern region SARE-funded small ruminant research in areas of production, animal health and marketing as you explore the enterprise for your farm.
Interest in pastured poultry production among small-scale farmers has grown significantly in recent decades because it is often an inexpensive way to add supplemental revenue and diversification to small farms, especially for those with limited resources. Small flock production can include chickens, turkeys and other species, such as ducks, geese and quail. Diversification of animal species and the myriad ways those birds can be incorporated into on-farm production make for an attractive enterprise. In addition, components of pastured poultry production, such as animal waste and housing facilities, are effective in value-added production and niche marketing. This topic room includes a collection of educational materials developed out of decades of Southern region SARE-funded pastured poultry research.