Farming Fast & Slow

Farming Fast & Slow with Adam Wolf

The Arable Webinar

We are proud to announce our new science-driven, practical knowledge webinar series for people who grow plants, Farming Fast & Slow! Join Adam as he digs deep with guest hosts about the place where plants meet the sky.

Episode 14: Tech for Tubers: Digitizing the Family Farm
As the old adage goes, don't mess with success, right? The Wallace family has been growing great potatoes in Washington's Skagit Valley for four generations. But what happens when the next generation tries to shake things up a bit? In this episode, Ian Bailey, Arable's resident potato expert, welcomes David Wallace to learn about his mission to bolster profit and productivity on the family farm. David shares his experience in evaluating an array of technologies as he looks for ways to improve efficiencies across his farming practices, and discusses some of the challenges in adopting new technologies on the farm.

Episode 13: The Microbiome vs Everything (that you thought you knew about farming)
Is soil health not about earthworms and pores but the microbiome? Is crop protection not about pesticides but the microbiome? Is farm profitability not from optimizing input efficiency but actually cultivating the microbiome? It's too early to say definitively how it all works, but the microbiome seems to overturn everything we thought we knew with a more complex - and much more interesting - story of billions of undescribed species of microbes interacting in ways we can barely predict. Adrian Ferrero of Biome Makers joins the conversation to tell us what they've learned so far.

Episode 12: An Interview with Argentinian AgTech Entrepreneurs, Caburé
In this South American-focused episode, Arable's Walter Jove welcomes Felix Casabal of Caburé, an agricultural weather data & analytics company based in Argentina. Walter and Felix discuss agtech adoption in South America, identify the unique challenges facing Argentinian farmers, and highlight some trends to watch in 2020 and beyond. This conversation is in Spanish.

Episode 11: Digital Extension: Oregon State’s IPM portal
The county agent is one of the most durable images of rural America, visiting farms and kicking the dirt, and cooperative extension remains one of the most trusted ag institutions. But the extension has been evolving, becoming more specialized and meeting farmers where they are: on their cell phones. In this episode, Adam talks with Dr. Leonard Coop and Nick Andrews, the team behind Oregon State’s IPM portal,, which has become an innovative (and free!) digital platform for pest management, spray timing, seasonal crop forecasts, weather alerting, and more.

Episode 10: A River Runs Dry: IoT & The Yellowstone River Basin Ordeal
What happens when there's not enough water to go around? Adam welcomes special guest, Jeff Reed, whose career in tech, farming, and agritourism in the Yellowstone River Basin brings a unique perspective to the region's water problems. The discussion centers around innovative IoT-based solutions, including remote headgate and well monitoring, as well as more traditional approaches, such as water allocation and strategic crop planning.

Episode 9: Infield Weather Data and Smallholder Farmers
How does climate variability impact smallholder farmers and food security? How can SMS alerts improve farmers’ adaptive capacity? And how can infield weather data help? Jess interviews Fulbright scholar Dr. Natasha Krell, whose research couples data from IoT agro-meteorological sensors with household- and SMS-based surveys to understand farmer decision-making in the southern province of Zambia and central Kenya to explore this important topic.

Episode 8: Carbon Farming for the New Millennium
What is soil carbon and what makes it so hard to measure, monitor, manage, and monetize? If soil carbon is so central to crop health, why are there incentives to stockpile it on the farm? We’re joined by Dr. Keith Paustian, Professor at CSU Fort Collins and winner of the 2019 Groundbreaker Prize for COMET-Farm, to discuss his life studying soil carbon and what the next few years will bring for market-based approaches for rewarding soil carbon sequestration on the farm.

Episode 7: Water Use Efficiency in Food Production
In this special episode, Jess welcomes Trenton Franz and John Heaston, experts in hydrology and irrigation conservation, to discuss the unique water challenges facing the Great Plains, the UNL TAPS program, and the future of farming in the region.

Episode 6: Ag Research and API's: How to Get Plant & Climate Data Using a Jupyter Notebook
In a special episode for researchers, Adam chats with Arable's own Walter Jove on the value of API's in ag research and how a Jupyter Notebook can bring Arable's API data to life. Learn about the data visualization tools that a Jupyter Notebook offers, including charts, tables and other outputs, and how they can enhance your research. Hear what Arable is doing to support the research community and what resources are available to you now. View the Python example code here.

Episode 5: Little Gems, Sunions, and the Future of Breeding Vegetables for the Restaurant Industry
Jess chats with special guest Ian Smetona from Nunhems Vegetable Seed. With a focus on the restaurant industry, Ian and Jess tackle some fascinating topics in innovative seed breeding. How can new vegetable varieties help reduce food waste? Can species be bred to have an innate resistance to pest and disease? And is it really possible to breed a tearless onion? We touch on these questions and more in an episode that's not to be missed.

Episode 4: Crop Spectroscopy: From Leaf to Space
In this episode, we dive into one of the most intimidating parts of digital agriculture: vegetation spectroscopy. What is NDVI and why is it important? Can we really measure canopy cover with wavelengths of light - and what do we do with canopy cover in the first place? What else can crop spectroscopy show us? Adam and Jess break it down. View the slides here.

Episode 3: Managing Frost
Adam welcomes a special guest from a leading Washington apple growing operation. What effect does frost have on plants and at what growth stage are they most susceptible? What is the economic impact of frost events? What are some ways to manage frost and mitigate its damage? Watch the video to learn more.

Episode 2: Understanding Crop Growth
Adam & Jess meet again to discuss growth stages, how they influence timing, and how to put this knowledge to use on the farm. What are Growing Degree Days, and why do they matter? How and why should you calculate chill hours? How does day length affect growth? Download the slides and join the discussion.

Episode 1: Irrigation Basics
A conversation with Adam Wolf & Jess Bollinger
How much water does my plant need? Is there a right way to water plants? Why does a plant need water in the first place? Find out the answers to these and more in a conversation with Adam & Jess.