Course Truffle plantation establishment and management

International course on TRUFFLE FARMING

PLANTATION ESTABLISHMENT AND MANAGEMENT HARVESTING AND MARKETING

Basic concepts, planting, pruning, tilling and irrigation, Spanish wells, dog training, pests and diseases, showcooking, truffle dishes for product marketing, truffle selection (marketing qualities), field trips

Please, click on each day to see the scheduled lectures, professionals and field trips and check the other titles for more info.

Monday the 6th of February

Morning (9:30 to 14:00 h) and afternoon (15:30 to 19:00 h) Basic concepts, plantation assessment and establishment, most common failure points, annual task calendar

Basic concepts (2 hours):

  • What is truffle farming? Why not wild truffle hunting?
  • Basic concepts on fungal biology: fungi, truffles, mycelium and mycorrhizae, the brĂ»lĂ©
  • Truffle species used in truffle farming around the world, characteristics,
    basic agricultural needs and viability
  • The host species used in truffle farming (trees and bushes), characteristics
    and viability in field conditions
  • Black truffle, Tuber melanosporum, ecology, helper bacteria
  • Productive and life cycle, of Tuber melanosporum, sexuality
  • Why do truffle plantations stop producing?
  • Mycohhizal contamination progress in black truffle plantations

Previous assessment on plantation viability (1.5 hours):

  • Climate: temperatures, rainfall and their annual distribution
  • Soil: basic parameters, nutrient levels, nutrient correction, correct soil
    sampling
  • Water availability and basic needs for irrigation
  • Previous crop and forest contamination
  • Plant selection: tree species, plant age, plant quality
  • Bibliography and on-line information sources

Plantation establishment (1.5 hours):

  • Previous steps: correction of soil parameters and fungal contaminantion
  • Soil preparation
  • Establishment: planting season, pa מּern (spacing), planting, tubes

Conclusions: basic failure points in truffle plantations (1 hour)

Annual calendar for plantation tasks (1 hour)

Tuesday the 7thof February

Complete day at MicoLab’s facilities, including lunch Pruning and shade control, weed control and tillage, showcooking, irrigation design and management

Pruning and shade control (1.5 hours)

  • Techniques and aims based on plant age
  • Basic tips
  • Pruning young plants
  • Pruning older plants, factors that may influence decision-making
  • Climatic factors that condition pruning options
  • Mulches and other techniques to provide summer shading

Weed control and tillage (1.5 hours)

  • Objectives
  • Tasks depending on plant age and type of soil, machinery and tools used
  • Tilling the brĂ»lĂ©: why, when and how

Showcooking (1,5 hours)

  • How to cook with fresh black truffles
  • Organoleptic characteristics of black truffles, how compose a plate thatenhances those qualities and puts aroma in the spotlight
  • Preparation of easy cold and hot courses to promote black truffles

Irrigation (2.5 hours)

  • Objectives and aim in each plantation phase
  • Moments and frequency
  • Basic tips
  • Irrigation emi מּers, pros and cons. Emi מּer selection
  • Irrigation system design
  • Other important devices for irrigation

The Schedule and timings for the whole training course may vary slightly depending on the group members’ needs

Wednesday the 8th of February

Morning (9:30 to 14:00 h) and afternoon (15:30 to 19:00 h)
Spanish wells, pests, diseases and other damage factors,
truffle dog training

Spanish wells (spore field inputs), with the technical support of Clara RascĂłn Lozano (2 hours):

  • Definition, pros and cons and how they operate
  • When and how to do spore inputs with substrate
  • Manual and mechanical options
  • The substrate
  • Techniques used to add the spores and how to prepare the inoculum
  • Reinoculations: in which situations are they useful? How to do them?
  • Inoculum quality control

Pests, diseases and other damage factors in truffle plantations, by María Martín Santafé (2 hours):

  • Do truffle plantations really have big phytopathological enemies?
  • The importance of assessing the real need for pest and disease controlin the plantation
  • Agents of tree damage
  • Truffle pests: flies and the truffle beetle (Leiodes cinnamomeus)
  • Damage prevention and control

Truffle dog training, by Alba Herranz (2 hours):

  • Characteristics of the canine sense of smell, olfactory memory
  • Selecting a future truffle dog
  • Definition and stages of dog socialization
  • What it is and how to achieve motivation in working dogs
  • How do dogs learn? Classical and instrumental conditioning
  • Smell association: direct and by reward
  • Animal welfare

Final conclusions and group discussion

Thursday the 9th of February

Field trip, practical trainings in Teruel:
dog training, traditional plantation management

From 9:30 until 20:00 hours

Truffle search with dogs and dog managenet in truffle plantations, with Alba Herranz (morning, in Cella)

Truffle menu at lunch time in La Fondica (in La Puebla de Valverde)

Field visit: Traditional management of high yield truffle plantations with the plantation owner and farmer (afternoon, in SarriĂłn)

Friday the 10th of February

Field trip, practical trainings in Teruel:
intensive management, machinery, marketing

From 8:00 until 20:00 hours

Field visit: Implantation and intensive management of highly technified truffle plantations, with machinery demonstrations

Demos on machinery and techniques for tilling, weed control and Spanish wells, explanation of the irrigation design, with Ricardo Forcadell and CĂ©sar Vaquero

Demo on the management of a linear trenching machine to do Spanish wells plus discussion on the importance of creating truffle farmers' associations, by Marisa Esteban and Jesús González (morning, in Monreal del Campo)

Truffle menu at lunch time in Bar Teruel (in Teruel city)

Field visit: Mytruff facilities for truffle marketing and export. Explanation of facilities needed for truffle preparation for exportation and quality diferentiation and selection, by Cosme MartĂ­nez (afternoon, in Teruel)

Lectures, field visits and demos by:

Luz Cocina Romero

Agricultural Engineer
CEO at MicoLab

Clara RascĂłn Lozano

Master’s Degree in Cultural
and Natural Heritage
Technical Director at Arte Trufa

María Martín Santafé

PhD in Forest Engineering
Researcher at the AgriFood
Institute of Aragon (CITA)

Alba Herranz

Dog training specialist
CEO at Alba Herranz
Adiestramiento Canino

Ricardo Forcadell PĂ©rez

Forest Engineer
Manager at Qilex
Forest Consultancy Services

CĂ©sar Vaquero

Agricultural Engineer
CEO at Globaltek,
Irrigation and Engineering

Jesús González

Agricultural Engineer
Truffle Farmer
Machinery designer

Marisa Esteban

Truffle Farmer
President of the
Young Truffle Farmers’
Association of Teruel

 

Price and additional information

The price of the course is 2.650 €. In Spain taxes are not applied to training courses.

The price includes:

  • Bound notes on all the concepts explained during the course
  • The lunch meals of the five days of the course
  • Snacks and drinks in between lectures at MicoLab’s facilities
  • Roundtrip rides in a private bus from MicoLab’s facilities for the two field trips

In order to book the course, 25% of the total price has to be paid by bank transfer. The remaining amount has to be paid maximum by the 15th of November, 2022. Aﬞ er this date, if the remaining amount hasn’t been paid, the deposit and the reserved place will be lost.

If by the 6th of December of 2022 a minimum of 6 students haven’t applied for the course, it will be cancelled and the full amount paid will be returned to all students.

All students get an official invoice and a training certificate signed by Luz Cocina Romero (Agricultural Engineer with a marster’s Degree on
Education, and accredited teacher by the Spanish Education Ministry).

A maximum of 18 students are allowed per course.

The lectures on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday will take place at MicoLab’s facilities, located in:

Avda. Corts Valencianes, 75 bajo izda  46530
Puzol (Valencia Province, Spain)

On Sunday the 12th of February (one day after the course) there will  be a technical training on microscopy applied to truffle farming for a
maximum of 9 students. If interested, contact MicoLab.

For more info, please, contact us:
info@micolab.com
+ 34 665 911 457 (phone calls or WhatsApp)

International training course on
MICROSCOPY APPLIED TO TRUFFLE FARMING

– Truffle species identification, spore inoculum quality assessment and uses

– Quality control of nursery truffle plants

– Identification of mycorrhiza species commonly found in nursery plants

Please, click on each title to see the scheduled trainings, contents and other useful info.

MORNING

TRUFFLE SPECIES IDENTIFICATION, SPORE INOCULUM QUALITY ASSESSMENT

  • The use of microscopy for plant production and plantation management of plants inoculated with Tuber melanosporum
  • Truffle identification, importance and objectives
  • Macroscopic characters of truffles
  • Truffle sample preparation
  • Microscopic identification of truffles: spores and asci
  • Microscopic assessment of spore inoculum quality
  • Preserving samples
  • Bibliography and web links (including identification keys)

MYCORRHIZA MONITORING IN TRUFFLE PLANTATIONS

  • Root sampling, needed materials and statistical considerations.
  • Available sampling methods, when and how to use each possibility (pros and cons).
  • Preparing the plant samples and soil/root samples for cleaning and extraction.
  • Preservation techniques.
  • Extraction of mycorrhizae from soil samples.
  • Cleaning.

AFTERNOON

  • Microscopic identification of most common mycorrhizae present in European truffle plantations.
  • Counting and interpreting the results.
  • Assessment of the most adequate management techniques in view of the mycorrhiza species present.
  • Bibliography and web links (including identification keys)

THE COURSE WILL BE TAUGHT BY:

Luz Cocina Romero

Agricultural Engineer CEO at MicoLab

Clara RascĂłn Lozano

Master’s Degree in Cultural and Natural Heritage Technical Director at Arte Trufa

MATERIALS FOR THE STUDENTS

The student will be provided with the following materials to take home with:

  • Permanent slides (mounts) prepared by the student for future
    reference, in a slide carry box
  • Fresh samples of truffles for future reference
    (carefully sealed and labeled)
  • Dissection knife, microscopy tweezers and all lab equipment required for truffle and mycorrhiza microscopy
  • Basic set of chemicals used in truffle microscopy
    (carefully sealed and labeled and in small quantities)
  • Written notes in English, with identification pictures
  • Research papers and other important scientific documents (protocols)

COST AND OTHER INFORMATION

Duration: 8 hours (from 10:00 till 14:30 and 16:00 till 19:30 hours, including a 30-minute break in the morning for a snack and refreshments).

A maximum of nine students are allowed per course and they all work individually with their own set of materials and microscopes.

The trainees will be supported by two teachers who are analysts specialized on microscopy in order to offer an individual attention.

The price of the course is 950 €

In Spain taxes are not applied to training courses.

All students get an official invoice.

The course has to be paid in advance by bank transfer.

The price includes the answering of future questions via e-mail or WhatsApp about the training contents and for when the student
starts identifying on his/her own (first year aﬞ er the training).

It also includes snacks at MicoLab and lunch.

Students will be allowed to take as many pictures as they want during the training.

How are our courses

In this video you can see how we conduct our courses in the lab.

You can see more videos in our YouTube channel and more pictures in our social media pages.

Dog training courses

Our dog training courses include classroom lessons with practical examples and practical field lessons. In this video you can see how they are conducted.

Truffle farming, basic concepts

We recommend you this video so you can have a view of the options available and understand some basic concepts that are important in order to be able to decide if jumping into this wonderful adventure.

Also, that way you can see a bit of how we teach theoretical lessons.