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NC State Extension

2019 Big Dreams Small Farms

Big Dreams Small Farms is a program aimed at uncovering the details of agricultural production systems for those who are looking to start a new farm. The program walks through the practical side of soil management, animal husbandry, equipment needs, plant variety or animal breed selection, possible markets, and estimating cost and returns. Find out more below…

person teaching farm school participants

A half day in the classroom…

Where we cover:  production systems, variety selection, facilities/infrastructure needed, start-up costs, marketing options, insect/disease control, and post-harvest handling. All focused on the specific fruit or vegetable crops for the day.


For animal production, we will cover:  breed selection, basic animal care/husbandry, start-up costs, processing, marketing. We will keep the topics focused toward which animal production system we are focused on for the day.

Then a half day on the farm…

We want you to meet a farmer and have them walk you through the practical “how to’s” that we just can’t show you in the classroom. Sometimes is just better to see it and explain it if you are really wanting to know if this animal or crop is right for you. That is our goal during the farm visit.




Small Fruit Production

Pastured  Poultry Production


Participants on a tractor pulled wagon
photo credit:

Small Ruminants (Sheep & Goats) Production

Pastured Pork Production


Cow-Calf/Stocker Production


Market Garden