Apr 6, 2018
Going to School Without Leaving the Greenhouse By Tim Hodson

Are you looking for cost-effective and convenient resources to help educate your greenhouse staff?

If you are, then you should check out the latest series of online courses from the University of Florida’s IFAS Extension. These courses are designed to provide greenhouse staff members with the knowledge they need to make more informed crop management decisions — without having to leave your operations.

The courses are completely online and include streaming videos, readings and assignments. They are available any time of the day, and new modules are activated each week during the course. Graduates receive a personalized certificate of completion.

The series of eight different online training courses will debut in early June. Each of the four-week courses will be presented in both English and Spanish.

Two new courses have been added to the UF program this year — Introduction to Hydroponics and Water Quality and Treatment.

The first two courses, Greenhouse 101 and Costing & Profitability are scheduled to begin June 4.

Participants in the Greenhouse 101 course will learn the underlying horticultural science of plant growth for growers who lack a formal training in horticulture. Topics that will be covered include: plant parts and functions; photosynthesis and growth; greenhouse technology; flowering, compactness and branching; irrigation; nutrition; and plant health.

Costing & Profitability is an advanced course for more experienced growers. It will help participants develop the skills to accurately estimate production cost and profit for their greenhouse or nursery business.

Other course topics that will be offered later this year include:

  • Nutrient Management 1
  • Nutrient Management 2
  • Weed Management
  • Disease Management
  • Water Quality and Treatment
  • Introduction to Hydroponics

To date, more than 850 growers have successfully graduated from the UF online training courses.

Registration fees for most of the courses is $199. The fee for the Costing & Profitability course is $499. Discounts are available for registering multiple staff members.

For more information or to register for these courses, email greenhousetraining@ifas.ufl.edu.

— Tim


Tim Hodson

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