Is SAFS 679 or SAFS 680 a really hard class?
- Short answer, not really. Students must show up for work shifts and literally get dirty, but it’s all very worth it. Most students agree; FarmToYouNH is one of the best classes at UNH! There is nothing better than going into a high tunnel when it’s below zero outside in the middle of winter, taking off your jacket, and picking delicious fresh vegetables. You’ll forget it’s winter in New Hampshire!
What is SAFS?
- SAFS stands for Sustainable Agriculture and Food Systems. Most of the students in the Farm to YoU NH class are in this major.
I’m not a Sustainable Ag student. Can I take the Farm to You NH courses?
- Absolutely! SAFS 405, the intro class for the SAFS program is a prerequisite, but we’ve had business majors take the course with permission from the instructor. The most important thing is that you’re interested in growing food. Oh, and no freshmen. Sorry frosh… See you next year!!
Is SAFS 679 a prerequisite for SAFS 680?
- No! You can take it in either direction, although it’s more fun to take SAFS 679 first. That way, you get to see the tomato season from the very beginning to the very end!
What is a high tunnel?
- A high tunnel, or a polytunnel, is made of metal, wood, and polyethylene film. Our high tunnels consist of 2 layers of polyethylene film, each layer consisting of only one enormous sheet. The walls on either end are made of plywood or polycarbonate, a hard, flat, clear plastic sheet. High tunnels are mainly used in temperate regions for season extension, similar to greenhouses. High tunnels protect crops from extreme weather in a semi-controlled environment.
Isn’t a high tunnel the same thing as a greenhouse?
- No, not really. A high tunnel is considered a temporary structure, whereas a greenhouse is considered a permanent structure. High tunnels are like giant tents, whereas a greenhouse is much more like a house. Since a high tunnel is not considered a building, it doesn’t need to follow strict building codes.
What are some benefits and consequences of high tunnels?
- High tunnels are extremely beneficial for season extension (especially if they are heated). When it’s absolutely frigid outside, our high tunnels can be over 70 degrees on a sunny day.
- They are also great for moisture control. Since there is no rain on the crops, many diseases caused by excess moisture are prevented.
- High tunnels can be a bit on the expensive side, but there are grants available to offset that cost.
- One problem Farm to YoU NH has noticed is the build up of salt (salinization) on the top of the soil. This is most likely due to the constant use of drip irrigation and lack of rain to leach the soil.
What crops do you produce?
- Head Lettuce, Greens Mix, Spinach, Kale, Tomatoes, Squash, Peppers, Onions, Garlic, Pak Choi, Swiss Chard, Carrots, Celery, Jalepenos, Cucumbers, Strawberries, Asparagus, Okra, Edible and Non-Edible Flowers, Herbs, and much more. MUCH more!! Students help decide what is grown during the semester, so if you don’t see your favorite vegetable on this list, you should volunteer for the Propagation Team.
Check out more about this amazing major HERE !
Feel free to ask us more questions in the comments below!!