Ellen Polishuk

Farmers - Let me help you grow better,

Eaters - Come and see what a real farm looks like,

Ag Professionals - Find out what Sustainable Agriculture is all about,

Land Owners - Let's determine what kind of farm enterprises best fit your property.


I am a well-known dynamic speaker. I am very down-to-earth and can make complicated topics accessible to all kinds of listeners. I am passionate about food, farming, and biological agriculture and convey that energy through my presentations.



Field Day with Charlottesville Food Hub:

"Thank you for making the trip down to share your extensive hands-on, real world experience!  Your words carried a lot of weight and I was so glad the folks in the audience got to learn from you.  I learned a lot from you and was energized by your passion and no bs approach.  Thank you."

Cathryn Kloetzli, Extension Agent, Agriculture & Natural Resources
Virginia Cooperative Extension - Albemarle & Charlottesville Office


Keynote Address at Virginia Berry and Vegetable Growers Field Day, Virginia State University

"Thank you again for taking time from your busy schedule to speak at the vegetable and berry field day. You did an excellent job. I spoke with many participants and looked at the evaluation, and they all indicated that your presentation was the highlight of the event. We truly appreciate your time and your great presentation."

Reza Rafie, Virginia State University

Here's the YouTube of my presentation!  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wLSbiZQWqLk&feature=em-share_video_user


Veggie Compass On-Line Course. This video series is a step-by-step demonstration of how a tool called "Veggie Compass" can be used to give farmers a much fuller picture of their farm finances than regular record keeping systems provide. http://www.ssawg.org/gfp-veggie-compass


Ellen is one of our go-to presenters for Southern SAWG workshops and trainings. With her extensive experience in organic production and direct marketing, she has the knowledge that our discerning audience wants. She understands the challenges that small-scale diversified farmers face, and can guide them to better decision making in order to find solutions. We love working with her because Ellen isn’t afraid to speak the hard truth when needed, yet she strives to make learning fun.
— Keith Richards, Program Director, Southern SAWG
In 2013 we were fortunate enough to have recruited Ellen as an instructor for a farmer-workshop series entitled “Soil Fertility Management for Sustainable Vegetable Producers”. Ellen’s presentation was one of the most comprehensive, concise and user-friendly lectures I have heard on the topic. She definitely has a gift for being able to effectively communicate her knowledge of the science underlying sustainable farming practices within the framework of her practical farming experience, and to engage audiences with her passion for the subject and her wit.
— Dr. Geoff Zehnder, Coordinator Clemson University Sustainable Agriculture Program


One to Two Hour Presentations

Production for Profit: Soil Management, Fertility and Rotations

Farm Scale Composting: Evaluating the Role of Compost on Your Farm

How Do You Compare?: Using Benchmarks to Measure Your Farms Success

Local Foods

Beginning Farm Marketing

Making Your CSA Thrive in Increasingly Competitive Times

Coaxing More Profit from Your Farm: Just Because It Sells Doesn’t Mean it’s Profitable!

Labor Management

What is Sustainable Agriculture Anyway?

Soils 101 for Growers


Multi Hour Workshops

Where the Money Gets Spent - How to Manage Labor for Profit and Pleasure

Advanced Organic Vegetable Production (one day intensive)

Real Life Business Decisions to Increase Profits

Profits: How to Work Towards More

The 5 Rules for Soil Health - Diving into Soils: Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Pulling it all Together 


Multi Day Workshops

Growing Farm Profits - Whole Farm Profit Management

Past Venues

  Virginia Association for Biological Farming

  MOSES - Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service

 UNH Extension

 Allegheny Mountain Institute

 Future Harvest : Chesapeake Alliance for Sustainable Agriculture

 Southern Sustainable Agriculture Working Group

 Acres USA

Carolina Farm Stewardship Association

Tennessee Organic Growers Association

Oklahoma-Arkansas Horticulture Show

OLLI – Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at GMU




Past Events


May 31, 2017  Soils Course for Growers, Full Day Intensive, Allegheny Mountain Institute, VA

March 28, 2017  Introduction to Veggie Compass and Farm Profitability - Half Day Course, Tricycle Gardens, Richmond, VA

February 25, 2017  Farm Scale Composting, MOSES Conference, La Crosse, WI

February 23, 2017 Practical Route to Healthy Soils and Better Crops, Organic University, with Gary Zimmer, MOSES Conference, La Crosse, WI

February 6 and 7, 2017, The Business of Labor, Portsmith and Lebanon, NH

January 16, 2017, Farming for Profit - Getting your soils right to make money, Cleveland, OH

                                           January 9, 2017  Full Day Soils Intensive, VABF Conference, Hot Springs, Virginia

January 10-11, 2017, Using Labor Wisely, VABF Conference workshop sessions, Hot Springs, Virginia

November 16 and 17, 2016, full day training for agricultural service providers on Growing Farm Profits, San Antonio and Edinburg Texas

January 30, 2016Does Equipment Pay? with John Hendrickson, and Growing Fall Transplanted BrassicasSSAWG Annual Conference, Lexington, KY

January 27, 2016Veggie Compass Training (full day) with Jim Munsch, SSAWG Annual Conference, Lexington, KY


 January 7, 2016, Getting More from your Labor, North American Strawberry Growers Conference, Savannah, GA

December 3, 2015Making Soil Health Come First – Building Your Ground While Staying Profitable in the Vegetable Business, Virginia Farm to Table Conference

November 8, 2015Coaxing More Profit from Your Farm: Just Because It Sells Doesn’t Mean it’s Profitable!, CFSA Annual Conference, Durham, NC

November 6, 2015, Using the Veggie CompassCFSA Annual Conference Pre-Conference Intensive (9am-3pm), Durham, NC

October 29, 2015Is Your Gut Instinct Costing You Money?, Local Food Hub, Charlottesville, VA

February 9, 2015, Soil Fertility for Sustainable Vegetable Production, Farm to Table Conference for Midsouth Producers, Memphis, Tennessee

February 21, 2015, Growing Farm Profits, day and a half training, Jackson, Mississippi, 

February 23 & 24, Growing Farm Profits, Day and a half training, Baton Rouge, Louisiana

February 28, 2015,  Oregon Small Farms ConferenceFarm Profitability 1: Discovering Where The Profits Are On Your Farm (And Where They Are Not)

January 17, 2014, Basic Soil Improvement Techniques for Sustainable Farmers , SSAWG Conference, Mobile, Alabama

January 14-15, 2015, Growing Farm Profits Short Course, SSAWG Conference, Mobile, Alabama

December 4, 2014, A Fresh Look at Understanding Soil, ACRES Conference, Columbus, Ohio, cd available here  

December 5, 2014, Managing Your Farm for Profitability, ACRES Conference, Columbus, Ohio, cd available here

October 21, 2014    Association of Specialty Cut Flower Growers Annual Conference, Newark, Delaware, Ummm, Growing Flowers is Still Farming!    ASCFG Conference  

July 10, 2014  Pest Management Workshop, organized by the Local Food Hub, held at Bellair Farm in Albemarle County, VA.  

January 18, 2014, SSAWG Conference, Mobile, Alabama, What You Don’t Know About Labor May be Costing You,

January 30, 2014, Managing Your Farm for Profits, Virginia Biological Farming Conference, Richmond, Virginia

February 1, 2014, Growing Farm Profits Workshop, Community Farm Alliance, Lexington, KY, http://communityfarmalliance.org/young-and-beginning-farmers/growing-farm-profits-conference/

February 21, 2014, Georgia Organics Conference, Jeckyl Island, GA,  Profits & Enterprise Budgets: How to Work Towards More, http://conference.georgiaorganics.org/in-depth-workshops/