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Getting Started

University of California Resources


Use the Soils Map from the UC Davis California Soil Resource Lab to find out what soil type you have on your farm. You can also access iPhone and Android apps in which you can instantly identify the soil based on your 'current location'.

Soil Survey

Soil Fertility Management for Organic Crops and Soil Management and Soil Quality for Organic Crops are two publications from UCANR with information about enhancing on-farm soil health.
Check out these UCANR Learning Modules about soil Nutrition and Soil health.

Crop Resources

The UC Small Farm Program website contains information about specialty crop production, organic production, food safety, rural cooperatives, agritourism, and farm management for a variety of crops including apples, Asian vegetables, blueberries, melons, squash, and strawberries.
UCCE Farm Advisor Mark Bolda's blog Strawberries and Caneberries can provide you with up-to-date information on the cultivation of strawberry and caneberry crops. 

Fruit and Nut Trees:

The Fruit and Nut Tree Research & Information Center website is a database organized by crop that includes orchard management and weather-related information, extension courses, tree biology information, and online research databases. 
Fruit and nut
The Almond Doctor blog shares relevant information for almond production in California.  

Look at the Topics in the Subtropics website to find information about citrus, avocados and all maters of water and irrigation. To find specific topics, scroll down to the 'tags' category on the righthand panel.

Vegetable Production:  
The UC Vegetable Research and Innovation Center website links you by crop to other websites and publications about vegetable crop production in California.
Use the Agronomy Research and Innovation Center website to find resources about producing alfalfa, beans, cotton, biofuels, corn, oil seeds, rice, small grains sorghum, and sugar beets.

Use the Organic Production tab of the UC Vegetable Research and Innovation Center to find organic-specific resources.

Insects, Beneficials, Pests, and Diseases:  
The UC IPM website provides information about the statewide integrated pest management program.
Bee Briefs from the UC Davis department of entomology and nematology contains short articles providing essential information about beekeeping


The Weed Research and Information Center website has information about weed identification, herbicide symptoms, and weed biology and management.
Weed Management for Organic Crops is a document from UCANR with strategies for controlling weeds on-farm.

Production Economics:

The UC Davis Cost and Return Studies website contains cost and return studies for 95 different agricultural products including alfalfa, apples, avocado, lettuce, pears, strawberries, walnuts, goats for meat, mixed vegetables, and olive oil. These studies can give you a general idea of financial and farm management strategies for the agricultural products discussed.
Cost and Return Studies

See the UCCE Farm Business Marketplace Website to access business and marketing information for fresh products.

Supplies and Equipment

Use this Suppliers Resource Guide to learn about where you can purchase general farm supplies, soil amendments, irrigation supplies, farm equipment, seed, and more. 

The Compost Buyers Guide gives information about where you can purchase compost, as well as pricing and product details. Use this guide on How to Add Compost on Your Small Farm to learn how much compost you may need. 

Check out Tractors 101 to find information about different tractor types and tips on buying or renting tractors. 



Weed Science School from the Weed Resources and Information Center:

  • 2.5 day training course
  • Offered in the fall of odd numbered years

UC Soil and Water Short Course:

  • 1 day training course
  • Offered 1-2 times per year in November (but may vary)

Postharvest Technology of Horticultural Crops Short Course

  • Annual, 2-week long course taught at UC Davis in June

Principles of Fruit & Nut Tree Growth, Cropping, & Management

  • Annual, 2 week long course taught at UC Davis in February


California Agriculture gives you access to UCANR's bimonthly news and peer-reviewed research database. 

2019 California Young Farmers Report written by the National Young Farmers Coalition reports on some of the main challenges faced by young farmers (farmers who have farmed for 10 years or less) in California 

UCCE Foothill Farming Internet Resources for New Growers



Non-University of California Resources

ATTRA is a program developed by the National Center for Appropriate Technology that provides diverse agricultural information for growers.
Soil Nutrition, Management, and Health:  
The California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) provides fertilizer guidelines for a variety of crops including cotton, almonds, processing tomatoes, corn, broccoli, lettuce, wheat, grapevines, walnuts, rice, alfalfa, strawberries, cauliflower, barley, citrus, pistachio, prunes, plums, peaches, and nectarines.
Fertilizer Guidelines
Rare Fruit:  
Julia Morton's website describes cultivation for fruits of warm climates.
Fruits of Warm Climates
Fruit Facts from the California Rare Fruit Growers shares information about individual fruits, including botanical identification, plant description and culture notes, and characteristics of cultivars.  
To learn more about avocado production, see Avocado Source.