Fall & Winter Growing
High Tunnels for Homesteaders
High Tunnels are greenhouses for year-round fruit and vegetable production popular with growers of all scales. Explore the different types of tunnels to extend your crop season, the appropriate types of plants, irrigation issues, and how to apply to funding programs.
No Till Gardening
Minimal disturbance is a key to thriving soils that are supportive of the best plants. But how do you achieve this on the small scale holding? Patryk Battle will share no-till methods used at Living Web Farms, including special equipment, cover crops, planting schedules, and more.
Microgreens in Cool Weather
Microgreens are the tender shoots of salad vegetables (chard, arugula, mustard, beet, etc.) picked early. Learn about the nutrient qualities, varieties, value, and ‘how-to’s’ of micro green growing at home or for profit. See what the hype is all about.
Planting Before First Frost
Plant now; harvest October-February. This class will cover a short list of crops and considerations for timing, soil, water, and season extension strategies. Transplants, soil, and seeds will be available to take home for growing this fall and winter.
Whole Animal Cooking
Join Asheville chef and butcher Karen Fowler in exploring primal cuts from locally available beef, pork, and lamb. Learn the locations and characteristics of underutilized cuts of meat and how to creatively and deliciously incorporate them into your everyday kitchen routine.
Cooking & Storing Wild Foods
Discover the joys of foraging plants and herbs in the wild. Once harvested, explore drying, canning, and preserving. This fun and tasty class will cover cooking and storage techniques. Wild recipes included!
Feast from the Garden
Learn to make the most of your garden produce: the best times to harvest, the best techniques for storage, as well as knife skills and a wide variety of methods for preparation and preservation.
Southern Appalachian Milpa Cuisine
Discover the ecstatic cuisine of the “Milpa,” an ancient agricultural lifeway that integrates annuals, fungi, and animals. Discussion includes long-term management practices and the addition of biochar, as well as fiber, medicine, firewood, and building materials.
Fermentation & Preservation
Intro to Mead Making
This ancient art mixes honey with fruit, flowers, roots and herbs to create beverage bliss. We’ll cover handling, harvesting, and preparing ingredients including ratios and qualities of sweeteners and yeasts, and bottling and storing. The focus is on wild, open, and cultured fermentation.
This is an open session to talk about anything fermentation-related. Bring questions or issues you wish to clarify. Share your fermentation projects (failures as well as successes).
The Art of Home-Brew
Jeff ‘Puff’ Irvin
Want to brew beer at home? Come and learn the process with ‘Puff’. The class covers the basics of the home-brewing process: ingredients, process, and the science behind your favorite tasty beverage.
Learn the basics of water bath canning and pressure canning. The class will include food-specific instructions and detailed time charts. Get inspired and get canning.
Easy Soil Amending
Detailed discussion of the basic amendments traditionally added to organic gardens and small farms. Discover what your soil needs, the benefits of each amendment, and how to maximize bio-availability.
Four Season Composting
This session will cover the basics of how to create compost, vermicompost and compost tea and how to utilize and apply them to enhance your soils.
Beekeeping: Getting Started
Learn about honey bees and what it takes to be a beekeeper. Understand the equipment, how to get the bees, and most importantly, how to install them in your hive and grow the colony.
Save Your Seeds!
Angie Lavezzo and Chris Smith
Learn why, how, and when to save seeds with a focus on harvesting and processing for viability, good germination, and storage. Demonstrations for low tech seed processing.
Root cellaring was a crucial part of homesteading before refrigerators and year-round groceries. Using the earth’s naturally stable temperatures to store perishable items, it’s simple, low-tech, energy saving, and self-reliant. Rod will provide an overview of styles, building materials, DIY techniques, and usage.
Whether you are dreaming or doing, taking the time to plan your intentions for your homestead can help manifest your desires. Discover your values, skills, and resources, then chart a path to move forward with your plans. Visioning on this level enhances your confidence, boosts your creativity, and generates inspiration for the lifestyle you imagine.
Urban Homesteading for Busy People
This class offers tips and tricks for simple starting and easy maintenance. Learn some permaculture tools, get a virtual tour of a small homestead, and discover how to follow the agricultural calendar year. You’ll increase your backyard growing, save some money, and lighten your planetary footprint.
Sustainable Timber Harvesting
Understand the forest systems of the Southern Appalachians, which will inform your farm and landscape approaches. This session will review small-scale timber harvesting equipment and techniques for your farm, woodlot, and forest. Topics will include harvesting, skidding, forwarding, milling, drying, molding and shaping, and firewood processing.
Big Food Talk
Put down your re-usable shopping bag and quit squinting at that label. Let’s zoom out a bit and look at where we’re headed when it comes to clean food. What kind of activism is working? Where are we still lacking? What is your role? This conversation will include farmers, chefs, retailers, and eaters with the goal of practical activism. Join us.
Fall Wild Plant Walk
This class is an introduction to Field Botany. Explore how to identify the plants in your yard or on the trail by learning the ‘language’ of plants. Be ready for a walk on the wild side!
Home Oil Pressing
The benefits of pressing your own oil include freshness, quality, purity, and autonomy. Discussion on experimentation in home oil production with a hand-cranked press. Discover the best equipment, varieties of nuts and seeds, uses, storage, and more.
Fall & Winter Chicken Care
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 and decreases, troubleshooting, how to manage freezing temps, culling, preserving, and more.
Benefits of CBD (Cannabidiol)
Learn about the many health benefits of CBD including support for pain, reducing seizures and convulsions, and relieving psychological issues. CBD is a key component of Cannabis, often derived from industrial hemp, that accounts for many of the plant’s health benefits and not the psychoactive effects. Discover the biochemistry, current legal status, and future in NC.
Kid Friendly Herbs
Herbs can be a safe and effective theraputic choice for children. Learn traditional uses along with current research for health concerns such as insomnia, restlessness, ADHD, generalized anxiety, immune support, ear infection, and more. Features: Black Elderberry, Echinacea, Ginger, Lemon Balm, and Chamomile Flowers.
Fall and Winter Tonics & Syrups
Learn easy, effective, and delicious immune supporting foods and medicines to make on your own! We’ll discuss Fire Cider, which uses garlic, horseradish, and honey; an immune enhancing Elderberry Syrup; a nourishing gypsy cold and flu tea, as well as other recipes to soothe a variety of common discomforts throughout the year.
Native Medicinal Woodland Plants
Our regional native woodland plants offer powerful medicine. We’ll look at their uses in both Western and Chinese medicine contexts. Our best examples are Ginseng, Solomon’s seal, Black Cohosh, Wild Yam, and Angelica. Learn to grow, when to harvest, and how to process these and other Chinese herbs.
Organic Growers School is a non-profit organization providing organic education since 1993. Our mission is to inspire, educate, and support people in our region to farm, garden, and live organically.