EarthDance is a teaching farm located in Ferguson, Mo. that provides youth programs, volunteer opportunities, and other activities to help connect the local community to the land. The team at EarthDance uses organic practices to grow almost 90 varieties of crops on 2.3 acres.
Always seeking ways to improve the sustainability of their farm, they used a SARE Farmer Rancher grant to incorporate both permaculture and IPM practices. Their main objective was to establish plots of 25 species of native perennial flowers around the farm. The group also tested using insect netting instead of row covers to exclude insects from tender crops.
Over the course of the project, the group found the established wildflower plots began to attract a wider variety of beneficial pollinators and pest predators to the point that they were able to achieve improved yields while lowering their use of organic sprays.
Want more information? See the related SARE grant: