These classes take place on Saturday, September 6th at AB Tech, Main Campus Asheville. For the full schedule, click here. For overview of the Harvest Conference, click here. For pre-conference workshops, click here.
Fall & Winter Growing Track
Fall & Winter Vegetables—Varieties & Techniques
with Patryk Battle
The list of plants that thrive in the cool conditions of fall and winter is long. In Western NC, we can effectively grow year-round. Learn answers to the pertinent questions: When to start seeds? Do varieties matter? How to protect plants? How to transition into winter and spring? Join Pat, a seasoned grower, with endless tales of favorite varieties, averting crop damage, surprising plant foods, as well as a question and answer time.
Gardens that Give—Top Ten Essential Perennials
with Keri Evjy
Most of our favorite garden foods are annuals, which must be replanted each year. Perennials, however, keep coming back. Learn the top ten plants with wide usage that you’ll be pleased to have as regulars in your diet and in your garden. Cut down on your efforts by befriending plants that renew each year. Learn the value of nettles, strawberries, rhubarb, asparagus, hardy kale, sochan, french sorrel, milkweed, Jerusalem artichoke, monarda, daylily, and dandelion.
Alliums—Growing Garlic & Perennial Onions
with Ira Wallace
Garlic & perennial onions are from the Allium family with similar growing and storage requirements. Under the right conditions they are very productive crops with harvests 3-8 times greater by weight than the amount planted. Learn about heirloom varieties from planting to cultivation and harvesting. Whether a garden bed or an acre, these crops are easy and self-sustaining. We’ll cover soil preparation, weed control, disease prevention, harvesting, curing, and storage for these culinary essentials.
Grow Year Round—Easy & Affordable Systems for Season Extension
with Randal Pfleger
Season extension permits year round harvests. Learn about low-cost, do-it-yourself structures to extend your season. Cold frames are simple structures used for year-round greens and starting seeds. Row Covers are woven fabrics or UV-rated plastics used to cover garden crops. Hoop Houses are freestanding permanent structures at a fraction of the cost of a traditional greenhouse. Greenhouses and Sunrooms will also be discussed.
Home Cooking Track
World-Class Delicacies—Salsas, Chutneys, & Dressings
with Nanette Davidson
Raw salsas, green, red, and golden yellow, as well as chutneys of all varieties can be made with garden-fresh veggies & fruits and eaten raw or heated and preserved. Additionally, a mayonnaise-base can be made in 5 minutes and then turned into an herbal dip or dressing when combined with fresh salsa or chutney. This real-food demonstration will inspire you to the simple and exotic that can be made in the home-kitchen.
Mixing It Up—Herbal Tonics in the Kitchen
with Patricia Kyritsi Howell
Learn creative ways to combine seasonal produce, medicinal herbs, wild foods and more so that every meal is an opportunity for health. These delicious, time-honored herbal tonics improve immunity, build vitality, calm the nervous system and nourish your senses. Drawing from traditional recipes from cultures as diverse as Greece and China, this talk will introduce simple ways your food can become your medicine, and still have everyone asking for seconds!
Traditional Diets—Increased Vitality through Healthy Food
with Andi Locke-Mears
Animal fats, properly prepared whole grains, enzyme-enriched foods and nourishing bone broths kept our ancestors healthy. Learn why these are still vital factors for maintaining good health today. Beginning with a presentation of Dr. Weston Price’s unforgettable photographs of healthy traditional peoples, we’ll explore the underlying factors in a variety of traditional diets, which conferred beauty, strength and complete freedom from disease on so-called primitive populations.
Decoding Meats—Sourcing & Using Local, Grassfed, & GMO-free
with Meredith Leigh
The commercial animal feed industry is the largest purchaser of GMO feed (soy, cotton, corn, canola, sugar beet, and alfalfa) and Confined Animal Feeding Operations (CAFO’s) result in antibiotic-ridden meats and toxic pollution problems. What are our local options? Learn about where to source local, grass-fed meats, and learn the realities our community faces regarding non-GMO feed. We will also discuss buying and cooking tips that can stretch your dollar and help your farmer. Storage, preparation, and preservation tips will be offered.
Fermentation & Preservation Track
Pickle Your Harvest
with Janelle Lucido-Conate
Make delicious, beautiful, and appealing veggie pickles that the whole family is excited to eat. From cucumber pickles with barbeque or carrot pickles with hearty stew, these easy ferments add flavor and nutrition to every meal. Salt brining creates crunchy, textured and tasty pickle and increases the shelf life of your harvest. This easy process which works for much of your garden’s surplus: okra, green beans, radishes, beets, cauliflowers, carrots, cucumbers, onions, garlic, and more.
with Diana McCall
The prevalence of digestive disorders has us moving away from gluten and finding creative ways to process grains. Home-made flatbreads and crackers are soaked, sprouted, and fermented, making a sourdough batter that is highly digestible and many times as nutritious as yeasted breads. These breads are made around-the-world and can be adapted to many grains and seeds including rice, amaranth, quinoa, and more. Additionally, grain-free folks can use legumes. Learn this easy method to delicious homemade breads.
Creative Abundance—Top 10 uses for Excess Fruit
with June Ellen Bradley
Buckets of ripening fruit on the homestead is what we’ve hoped, dreamed, and planned for. But it can be stressful to manage. Discuss creative ideas for preserving and using fruit. We’ll cover the basic preservation techniques: freezing, canning, jamming, as well as the eat-right-now techniques: smoothies and pie, cobbler, or other baked goods, and some novel ideas: refrigerator jam, sauce for sunday pancakes, juice (great for autumn olives), fruit leather, and even popsicles.
Make Mead Like a Viking
with Jereme Zimmerman
Learn to make your own mead (honey wine) using techniques that have been utilized by ancient cultures since the first discovery of bubbling honey and its magical effects, and are still employed by wild-fermentation enthusiasts today. Wild fermentation techniques will be the focus, but other mead-making practices will also be discussed. Be prepared for a lively, interactive discussion on mead, Vikings, and the simplicity of wild-fermenting your own alcoholic beverages. Intermediate techniques and suggestions for experimentation will be discussed as well.
Seed Underground—A Growing Revolution to Save Seed
with Janisse Ray
Of the thousands of seed varieties available at the turn of the 20th century, 94 percent have been lost — forever. With a lyricism that prompted a New York Times writer to proclaim her the Rachel Carson of the south, Janisse brings us the inspiring stories of ordinary gardeners whose aim is to save open-pollinated varieties like Old Time Tennessee muskmelon and Long County Longhorn okra—varieties that will be lost if we don’t grow, save, and swap the seeds.
Backyard Medicine—Grow, Harvest, Prepare, & Use Your Own
with Chip Hope
Learn about do-it-yourself propagation, growing, harvesting, processing, and use of a selected group of important healing plants… Echinacea, Ashwagandha, Tulsi, Lemon Balm, Valerian, Lavender, Peppermint, Chamomile, Calendula, Comfrey, Yellow Root, Garlic, Ginger, Tumeric, Elderberry, and Aloe. Such useful plants that you can grow in your own home and garden, wherever it is, for improving your own health…right here, right now!
Regional Resiliency—Food Security for Changing Times
with Chuck Marsh
Regional Resiliency speaks to the strength of a region’s ability to respond to and recover from a significant human or natural disruption. Food security focuses on the production and availability of food. As times change, how viable is our food community? We’ll explore what foods we need to grow to thrive nutritionally in our local food sheds, and how permaculturally informed food growing strategies can support the growth of a nutritionally viable local and regional food supply.
Backyard Composting Made Easy
with Brian Rosa
For those that want to learn how to recycle yard, garden, food and farm waste into compost to nourish the soil. Workshop will cover these subjects: what is composting, 4 components to compost, hot/fast or slow/cold composting, bins & containers, tools & accessories and most importantly: how to build a compost pile and maintain it.
Homestead Skills Track
Pollinator Habitat—Providing for our Friends this Fall & Winter
with Diane Almond
While scientists, beekeepers, and politicians disagree about what’s killing our polli
nators, all agree that they need more healthy forage. Whether you are a small farmer or urban gardener, come learn about providing for the bees. We’ll use plant guides, principles and practices derived from the excellent work of the Xerces Society, NRCS, Pollinator Partnership and experts. Discover a wealth of resources including organizations, pollinator-friendly communities, and models for developing pollinator projects and habitat where you live.
Winter Chicken Care—A Month-to-Month Guide
with Patricia Foreman
Chickens over-winter easily in WNC. Learn the in’s and out’s of chicken care through a monthly checklist which includes molting, lighting, housing, food increases & decreases, troubleshooting, how to manage freezing temps, culling, preserving, and more.
The Best Berry—Is the One You Grow Yourself
with Walter Harrill
Cane or bramble fruits, most commonly known as raspberries & blackberries are productive, delicious, multi-use, and don’t have to take much room. Home-grown berries are healthier and definitely more economical. With a little information you’ll be ready to convert part of your garden, fenceline, or back pasture into berry production. Cane fruits are best planted and maintained in the fall. Learn about rootstock, suckers, fertility, soil ph, varieties, trellising, pruning, and troubleshooting.
Rediscovering Maize—The Mother Corn
with Kelly Wilkinson
Back by popular demand, this class deciphers heirloom flint, flour, and dent corn, and discusses variety selection, growing, harvesting, and post-harvest use. Excellent demos on shucking, shelling, cleaning, grinding, parching, popping, polenta, cornbread, nixtamal (hominy), tortillas, grits, posole, tamales, and salsa.
Wild Ideas Track
Walk in the Forest—Learn Your Trees and Know Your Woods
with CoreyPine Shane
Looking up at the trees around you shows you what plant community you are in. With an eye on a few basic details such as leaf arrangement, shape, and leaf bud examination, as well as a good book, you can easily begin identifying the trees around you. Learning what trees grow around each other also tells you what kind of soil there is and therefore what community of plants you are going to find there.
Appalachian Heritage Foods
with Slow Food Asheville & Shona Jason-Miller
As a place deeply rooted in agriculture and self-sufficiency, WNC is a landscape where food and culture have been inextricably linked with the natural resources of this biodiverse region. Join a panel representing the forest, the field, and the garden and larder as we map the historical food landscape with stories captured through oral histories collected by the Appalachian Food Storybank. Explore how heritage food products can be presented in the food market and culinary realm and learn how to bridge the historical food landscape with modern food movements.
Wild Food—The Cure for our Eden Disorder
with Alan Muskat
Join Asheville’s own philosoforager as he takes you out to eat — outside, that is. Nature’s supermarket is open
24/7 right outside your door. Here, the produce is always organic, fresh, and free. Wild food is the ultimate local, natural food. This is one place where you get what you don’t pay for. We’ll meet a dozen denizens of your yarden and learn seven reasons to make friends in low places. It’s time to eat the neighbors! (Indoor lecture)
Biochar-Making Cook Stove
with Chris Farmer
Biochar is a name for charcoal used as a soil amendment to increase soil fertility and productivity. Biochar is under investigation as an approach to carbon sequestration, thus having the potential to mitigate climate change. This workshop will demonstrate how to cook food and make biochar, using a small Champion TLUD (Top Lit Up Draft) gasifier. Basic history of biochar and gasifiers will be given in addition to a demonstration of creating high-quality biochar while steaming a large pot of food.
Want to register? Click here.