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Half-Day Workshops

Intro to Spirulina Cultivation

Learn how to cultivate spirulina in a low-tech home or small farm setting. We’ll cover media proportion, culture maintenance, batch culturing, harvesting, and consumption. Gain hands-on experience preparing cultures that you can take home with you! We’ll end the class with a tasting to demonstrate how you can readily incorporate fresh spirulina into foods to boost their nutritional value.

William Padilla-Brown

MycoSymbiotics & MYCOFEST
William is a multidisciplinary citizen scientist who practices social science, mycology, phycology, molecular biology, and additive manufacturing. He founded and is the current CEO of MycoSymbiotics. MycoSymbiotics is a permaculture research and production business based in Central Pennsylvania, focusing on innovative, practical, and applied biological science.

Cooperative Agroforestry

This workshop explores appropriate approaches to agroforestry in Appalachia. We’ll dive into the details of growing and processing some essential agroforestry crops, particularly nuts. Participants will examine how land access is a significant barrier and why commons-based approaches can help meet current climate resilience and regenerative needs. We’ll also sample nut products and do some hands-on demonstrations of nut processing.

Justin Holt

Justin has worked in agroecology, ecological design, and education for over a decade. He is a founder and worker-owner of the Nutty Buddy Collective, the Asheville Nuttery, and co-founder of Kudzu Culture. He also guides foraging tours with No Taste Like Home and works as a freelance permaculture designer.

Invasive Vine Basketry

Native Americans know all plants have medicinal properties and spirits as living beings, even those considered “invasives” that are often detested and discarded. This session will cover the uses of such invasives in Native cultures, and teach you to transform plants like kudzu and wisteria into beautiful freeform baskets.

Nancy Basket

Kudzu Kabin Designs
Nancy has been a kudzu basket maker for 30 years. She learned to weave her first pine needle basket in 1980. Nancy is a public school artist in residence and teaches at Earthskills Gatherings throughout the region. Her works, such as substantial woven and freeform chandeliers, are installed throughout North Carolina.

Evergreen Explorations: Teas, Tonics, and Tricks

This end-of-winter exploration of nourishing wild teas, tonics, and tricks will help prepare your skin and gut for the return of spring. We’ll brew an immune-balancing tea and blend an evergreen exfoliation scrub to take home. Additionally, we’ll discuss seasonal tonic herbs and good foraging practices, then share space to honor our plant journeys and send gratitude to the Earth.

Almeta Tulloss

The Georgia Vinegar Company DBA Cherokee Moon Mixology
Almeta is an Afro-Indigenous herbalist, self-taught brewer, and wild garden farmer-forager living in the Appalachian piedmont. She is also the head brewer at Cherokee Moon Mixology, a vinegar microbrewery and cocktail brand. The women who founded and run the company create artisan, apothecary-style cider and wine vinegars, tonics, bitters, and shrubs using organic, locally-grown fruit, herbs, and spices.

Biochar for Soil and Planet

Biochar provides a means to turn waste wood into a powerful soil amendment while sequestering carbon. We will talk about what biochar is, what it isn’t, a little about its history, how it’s made and utilized, and some of the many uses it has, especially in soil regeneration. We will be making a batch of biochar together and you can take some home with you!

Alex Gray

Alex is an Appalachian State University researcher focusing on biochar and its use in soil regeneration. He is currently working to build community knowledge and interest in biochar by building biochar kilns and teaching workshops.

Land Design: Creating Base Maps

Putting thought into land design, whether for your garden, homestead, or farm, can help you actualize your goals for the space and tackle problems before they occur. This workshop will cover the first step in creating a land design: making your base map! We’ll review hands-on techniques and digital skills for beginning a map while incorporating permaculture principles.

Anna Cifaldo

Gardens of Eatin’ Landscaping, LLC 
Anna is a certified permaculture designer, ecological landscaper, and former organic farm manager. She has a passion for local food and loves helping establish sustainable structures for building communities. Anna bridges the gap between sustainability and aesthetics by embodying permaculture principles and implementing an ecological design.

 

Backyard Poultry

This experiential half-day workshop will teach you everything you need to know about housing, handling, and raising backyard poultry. We’ll also touch on the unique needs of turkeys and waterfowl. Learn how to evaluate physical production characteristics, identify bird sex, and all production steps, including breeding, incubation, processing, and egg production.

Meagan Coneybeer

 

 

NC School of Science and Math
Meagan has over a decade of experience breeding, raising, and processing chickens, turkeys, and waterfowl. She provides informative and accessible education about sustainable poultry through the Livestock Conservancy, Mother Earth News, and OGS. She also produces heritage poultry on her farm and works as the director of mentorship and research at the NC School of Science and Math.

 

Kitchen Sink Fermentation

Whether using scraps, bounty, expired food, discount finds, or your garden harvest, fermentation is a simple way to get food on the table while maximizing flavor and nutrition for your family. Join us to explore different perspectives and approaches to fermenting various products and creating new, complex flavors. Recipes will include sauces, cheeses, condiments, and more. 

PLEASE NOTE: Allergens (wheat, dairy, soy, fish, sesame, etc.) will be present in the space.

Soirée-Leone

Soireeleone.com
Soirée-Leone approaches food preservation as a strategy to put food on the table. She serves on boards including The Fermentation Association, farmers’ markets, other food-centric organizations, and Chinkapin Craftstead. She grew up on an off-grid homestead in rural Maine, and after 25 years in San Diego, she moved to her 57-acre homestead in Pulaski, TN, where she now lives.

 

Meredith Leigh

Mereleigh Food, LLC & Carbon Harvest 
Meredith is an award-winning author and activist dedicated to helping the collective divest from the coercive food system through collaborative action in the community and on the land, re-skilling workshops, and honest writing. She works as an educator and consultant through her business, MereLeigh Food, LLC, and is a co-founder of The Fermentation School and managing partner at Carbon Harvest.

Year-Round Vegetable Gardening

Get growing all year, including the less typical times of the year! This workshop will help you clarify your goals, plan for using the neglected seasons, and understand harvest indicators and storage methods. In addition, learn season extension techniques that account for cold- and hot-weather challenges.

Ira Wallace

African Diasporic Seed Collection, Southern Exposure Seed Exchange, the Heirloom Collards Project
Ira is a worker-owner of the cooperatively managed Southern Exposure Seed Exchange, which offers over 700 varieties of open-pollinated heirloom and organic seeds. She is the author of the Timber Press Guide to Vegetable Gardening in the Southeast and Grow Great Vegetables in North Carolina.

 

Pam Dawling

Twin Oaks Community & https://www.sustainablemarketfarming.com/
Pam has grown vegetables at Twin Oaks Community in central Virginia for 27 years, which feeds 100 people on 3.5 acres of land. She is the author of Sustainable Market Farming and The Year-Round Hoophouse. She is also a contributing editor with Growing for Market magazine, workshop presenter, and weekly blogger on www.sustainablemarketfarming.com.

Puerto Rican Food As Medicine

Join us for an immersive cooking class and discussion on the medicinal qualities of traditional Puerto Rican food. We will discuss the history, ingredients, and tradition of the island’s foodways and the importance of preserving these traditions, all while demonstrating cooking Puerto Rican Arroz con Gandules.

Brandon Ruiz

Brandon is an urban farmer and community herbalist. He runs Yucayeke Farms, a farming and herbalism project focused on supplying the surrounding community with culturally-relevant foods. His work focuses on providing accessible medicines and educational information, particularly to Black, Indigenous, and People of Color. His roots are in Puerto Rico, and he works with medicines from the Caribbean and Appalachia.

Magical Mead Making: An Introduction to the Alchemical Art of Transformation

Delve into the ancient art of mixing honey! This hands-on beginners’ workshop will guide participants through harvesting ingredients and preparing them for the mead. Participants will create their own beginnings of a most delightful beverage! Learn the ratios of sweeteners, fermentation methods, and how to rack, bottle, and store mead. We’ll also sample some of this fermentation and alchemical magic!

Marissa Percoco

The Firefly Gathering
Marissa is a fermentation enthusiast, plant tender, activist, artist, and mother to many. As of 2021, Marissa is also a breast cancer survivor. She is grateful for her family and community, our planet’s abundance, and the opportunity to connect with nature. She serves as the executive director of The Firefly Gathering, coordinates the Equity Fund, and teaches throughout the Southeast.

Traditional Foods of the Cherokee People

Discover traditional foods gathered in the Great Smokies by the Cherokee, including spring gathering of various wild mountain salads and plants. Including but not limited to Ramps, Sochan, Poke Salad, Jellico, mushrooms, berries, and nuts.

Tyson Sampson

Tyson is a two-hearted and -spirited individual descended from the local indigenous matriarchy called the ᎠᏂᎩᎶᎯ (A-ni-gi-lo-hi). In multifaceted contributions over 19+ years, they have documented endangered language, held a mindful presence, and shared Cherokee wild food practices and cultural sensibilities. Tyson is cultivating an apothecary for ethnobotanical accessibility and a collective to support traditional ecological knowledge.

The Local Home Kitchen: Thinking locally and seasonally

How do our kitchens, kitchen infrastructure, and eating habits relate to our local food system? In this workshop, we will discuss how to move beyond where we are in the local food movement from the household-level outward. We will learn simple cooking techniques and recipes and eat together.

Sunil Patel

Sunil Patel

Patchwork Alliance & Patchwork Urban Farms
Sunil is a farmer, permaculturalist, and food thought leader. He has studied natural farming methods throughout the US, including year-round biodynamic vegetables, managing a grass-fed dairy, making artisanal raw milk cheese, natural building, and helping maintain permaculture sites. He lives in Asheville, where he launched Patchwork Urban Farms in 2014.

Farming – Business

Stephanie Vinat is our Track Leader for the Farming – Business Track. Stephanie is a former sales director turned farmer. She began her career in education and later transitioned to the financial sector. She is an avid traveler and spent two years traveling internationally, when she earned her Permaculture Design Certificate from Punta Mona Center for Regenerative Design & Botanical Studies and her 200 Hour Yoga Teacher Certificate from Himalaya Yoga Valley. She now operates The AppaLatin Farmstead – a small-scale farm practicing holistic agriculture and food justice, and serves as a Program Coordinator at OGS. She focuses on growing culturally significant crops and celebrating her Cuban-Puerto Rican roots through her value-added food products. She is a Farm Beginnings graduate and local food advocate.

Farm Financials: Funding and Recordkeeping

This beginner-friendly class will teach participants how to track farm financials with easy-to-use templates and find agriculture-specific funding streams. We will look at three key financial documents to know your numbers: profit and loss reports, balance sheets, and production capacity and projections.

Gabriele Marewski

Farm4Business
With over 30 years of experience in agriculture, Gabriele has a unique perspective as a coach that draws on her skills as a farmer, entrepreneur, and traveler. She has a passion for supporting start-ups and established agriculturists. Gabriele created the Farm4Business platform as a curated source of information for all things agribusiness related.

Holistic Decision Making

Few things are as liberating as having a values-based framework to operate within, effectively informing even the most challenging decisions on the farm, homestead, and any aspect of life. Learn how to apply a holistic context to incorporate core values, quality of life aspirations, statement of purpose, and the resource base to guide your decision-making.

Noah Poulos

Wild East Farm
Noah and his wife Lyric tend Wild East Farm in McDowell County, NC. He is a farmer, writer, and educator that has gratefully called Western North Carolina home for many years. He looks forward to many years to come living alongside and learning from the agrarian community of this place.

The Stories We Tell

(SATURDAY ONLY)
This solidarity session invites farmers to reflect on the realities and inconsistencies of storytelling in the food movement and lean into the complexity of living among multiple storylines. From farming memes to the narratives we craft for the community, this space allows farmers to share experiences. How can farmers nurture radical authenticity to enrich personal health and strengthen community ties?

Meredith Leigh

Mereleigh Food, LLC & Carbon Harvest 
Meredith is an award-winning author and activist dedicated to helping the collective divest from the coercive food system through collaborative action in the community and on the land, re-skilling workshops, and honest writing. She works as an educator and consultant through her business, MereLeigh Food, LLC, and is a co-founder of The Fermentation School and managing partner at Carbon Harvest.

Finding Your Outlet – Panel

(SUNDAY ONLY)
With Daniel Bryant, Hannah Jeske, Nick Listo, and Vannah Roddy, moderated by Mary Bulan
This panel brings together a group of local farmers with experience in various market outlets to discuss market resilience and diversity in Western North Carolina. The discussion will define success, business creativity, product differentiation, market saturation, and product and income diversification and include time for Q&A.

Daniel Bryant Speaker Photo

Daniel Bryant

Smallholding Farm
Daniel is the co-owner at Smallholding Farm. He has experience working intensively under other organic, minimal to no-till farms where he’s acquired skills to bring into practice at Smallholding Farm. Daniel is a dreamer, experimenter, and avid lover of soil.

Hannah Jeske

R Farm
Hannah has always had a strong appreciation of nature and working outside. After graduating from an environmental science and sustainability program at UNCA, she started learning growing practices and working at local farms. Today, Hannah and her partner co-own R FARM in Weaverville, NC, where they grow various seasonal vegetables.

Nicholas Listo

Oak Holler Farm
Nick has been working in horticulture and farming for the past seven years. First in mass production nurseries and more recently running Oak Holler Farm, a Community-Supported Agriculture (CSA) farm in Marshall, NC. Oak Holler Farm uses organic low- and no-till systems on a 12-acre plot.

Vannah Roddy

Encompass Farm + Land Design
Vannah is a first-generation organic farmer who succeeded with an unconventional business model in a saturated market through Encompass Farm & Land Design. She feeds 60+ families weekly with online sales and teaches masterclasses for farmers and gardeners alike.

Farm Succession Planning

This workshop will review the legal tools and processes by which land and farm business interests are transferred and acquired. Participants will become familiar with the basics of property finance and ownership, agreements for land acquisition, access and use, and how interests in going-concern businesses are transferred by agreement.

Robert Andrew Branan

NC State University
Robert is an assistant extension professor with NC State ARE Department, where he teaches courses in Agriculture and Environmental Law and delivers farm law resources through Cooperative Extension. He previously worked in private law practice for farmers and farm landowners statewide in matters related broadly to farm succession.

Farming – Production Track

Stephanie Vinat is our Track Leader for the Farming – Production Track. Stephanie is a former sales director turned farmer. She began her career in education and later transitioned to the financial sector. She is an avid traveler and spent two years traveling internationally, when she earned her Permaculture Design Certificate from Punta Mona Center for Regenerative Design & Botanical Studies and her 200 Hour Yoga Teacher Certificate from Himalaya Yoga Valley. She now operates The AppaLatin Farmstead – a small-scale farm practicing holistic agriculture and food justice, and serves as a Program Coordinator at OGS. She focuses on growing culturally significant crops and celebrating her Cuban-Puerto Rican roots through her value-added food products. She is a Farm Beginnings graduate and local food advocate.

Amendments from A to Z

From Azomite to Zinc, we’ll look at over 40 amendments and learn their best uses, application rates, and methodology. After reading soil test results, knowing what, when, and where to apply the array of amendments available can be difficult when growing organically. We’ll also learn what we can make at home for free, including compost tea!

jason & ami roland

Jason Roland

Organically Roland
Jason Roland is the owner of Organically Roland, a small-scale market garden in Lexington, SC. He uses organic and biodynamic methods to provide two CSAs, local restaurants, and a weekly market with fresh produce. He loves sharing his knowledge, love of the land, and passion for growing with others through classes.

52 Weeks of Harvest: Extending Your Seasons

Grow year-round without heat! This class will review how to extend your season through fall, winter, and spring using high tunnels and cold frames. We’ll also discuss crops, planting dates, watering, and harvesting. We will also cover how to use two crop planning tools, which participants will get to take home with them.

Joannee DeBruhl

One World Center
Joannee owned and operated an organic vegetable farm for ten years, where she grew and harvested 52 weeks a year in Michigan without heat. A graduate of Michigan State’s Organic Farmer Training Program, she is now a farm mentor for MSU, a permaculture design professional, and the farm manager at One World Center.

 

The Good The Bad and The Bugly: Integrated Pest and Predator Management

Learn to control pests on the farm by supporting abundant diverse insect communities with plantings and a few other critical components. We will also offer organic controls for the few pests who don’t respond to this approach. Bring your questions and concerns! This workshop is suitable for beginners but will have space to address the concerns of experienced growers.

Patryk Battle

Living Web Farms
Over the past 30 years, Patryk, the director of Living Web Farms, has been practicing and presenting on biological pest control (often in collaboration with Dr. Richard McDonald) at Organic Growers School and multiple other venues. His articles and videos on this subject are available in print and online.

Patryk Battle

Richard Mcdonald (“Dr. McBug”)

Symbiont Biological Pest Management
DrMcBug’ has been playing with insects since 1959. Through Symbiont Biological Pest Management, he has been consulting with a wide range of local, regional, state, federal and international interests. He has successful programs controlling hemlock woolly adelgid, Japanese beetle, and other pests of national and international concern.

Profitable Seed Growing

This workshop will cover the basics of on-farm seed growing and why regional seeds are essential. We’ll focus on easy regional seed crops, working with seed companies, and specific southern challenges. The aim is to leave you in an informed position to decide if seed growing is right for you and your farm.

Chris Smith

The Utopian Seed Project 
Chris is the executive director of the Utopian Seed Project, a crop-trialing non-profit working to celebrate diversity in food and farming. He is the co-host of The Okra Pod Cast and his book, The Whole Okra, which won a James Beard Foundation Award in 2020.

Food Justice

Erica Gunnison is our Track Leader for the Food Justice track. 

Alternative Strategies for Land Access: Land justice for beginning farmers

This workshop will cover different techniques to secure land tenure without access to funds. Attendees will learn about working models of land redistribution and reparative justice and explore various methods of acquiring capital for farm development in rural or urban spaces.

Duron Chavis

The Happily Natural Day & Central Virginia Agrarian Commons
Duron is the founder of Happily Natural Day, a grassroots nonprofit dedicated to holistic health, culture, and social change. For over a decade, he has utilized urban agriculture to build community agency and ownership in marginalized communities. Duron uses local food to build racial equity, climate and food justice, and community resiliency by transforming vacant lots or revitalizing unused buildings.

Land Reparations and Ancestral Stories

(Half-day)
Join us for an open-minded workshop on reparations and to learn about practical steps we can take to build sustainable sharing economies. We’ll discuss the history of reparations and ancestral knowledge around land stewardship and share options for how white landowners can redistribute resources and support historically Black communities here in Western NC.

Ayotunde; Alice Dixson

Racial Justice Coalition 
Alice was raised to believe that life is a mural and not just a single picture, and she bases her work on the premise that everyone wants to be seen and heard. She is a licensed barber, Certified Peer Support Specialist, community and spiritual activist, racial equity facilitator, and a generational elder in a long line of Civil Rights activists.

Fél Marquez

Racial Justice Coalition 
Fél is a first-generation college graduate, a birth and death doula trained in restorative justice healing, a wilderness guide certified in non-violent communication, and an experienced organic farmer. They are now focusing their work on racial justice in their role with the Racial Justice Coalition. When Fél isn’t on the clock, they are rollerskating, doing community yoga, or reading sci-fi.

Cooperatives in WNC

(Panel)
With Leeza Regensburger, Sunil Patel, Shelby Johnson
Come learn about various agricultural cooperative initiatives in Western North Carolina. We will discuss the benefits and challenges of working cooperatively, support streams for getting started, and how to improve cooperation in the food space in our region.

Sunil Patel

Sunil Patel

Patchwork Alliance & Patchwork Urban Farms
Sunil is a farmer, permaculturalist, and food thought leader. He has studied natural farming methods throughout the US, including year-round biodynamic vegetables, managing a grass-fed dairy, making artisanal raw milk cheese, natural building, and helping maintain permaculture sites. He lives in Asheville, where he launched Patchwork Urban Farms in 2014.

Leeza Regensburger

Utopian Seed Project & WNC Seed Collective
Leeza is an NC farmer specializing in seed saving and traditional plant breeding. She is passionate about expanding the Southeast’s seed production culture for food security and climate adaptation. She is an early member of the WNC Seed Collective, which will provide education and access to equipment through its mobile seed processing trailer.

Shelby Johnson

WNC Seed Growers Collective
Shelby is a farmer and forager with a passion for deeply collaborative models of community engagement based around our shared love of the land. With deep family roots in Atlanta and Asheville, Shelby is dedicated to uplifting and preserving the unique culture of the South, believing that the only future we can guarantee is the one we mutually create.

Delia Jovel

Tierra Fertil Cooperative
Delia is from El Salvador and has lived in the United States since 2014. Delia began working with other community members to create ABUNDANCIA, a culturally appropriate food distribution and TIERRA FERTIL COOP, a Hispanic-owned farm cooperative in Henderson County NC. Delia has a strong commitment to the Hispanic community and is part of different grassroots groups as well as some local initiatives led by Hispanic members in her community.

Patchwork Hubs: A Model For A New Food System

Patchwork Hubs are a way for farmers, producers, neighbors, and communities to work together to make more secure food systems. Created by the Patchwork Alliance in Asheville, this model allows for community members to organize for food sovereignty, food access, and food empowerment. We will introduce this model and discuss how we can leverage it to create a new food systems paradigm for our region.

Sunil Patel
Patchwork Alliance
Patchwork Urban Farms
Become an owner of patchwork alliance cooperative to support this work!

Sunil is a farmer, permaculturalist, and food thought leader. He has studied natural farming methods throughout the US, including year-round biodynamic vegetables, managing a grass-fed dairy, making artisanal raw milk cheese, natural building, and helping maintain permaculture sites. He lives in Asheville, where he launched Patchwork Urban Farms in 2014.

 

Forest Farming

Margaret Bloomquist is our Forest Farming Track Leader. Margaret has worked in the NC Alternative Crops and Organics Program in NC State’s Department of Horticultural Science since 2012. She engages with woodland botanicals, organics, vegetables, and other specialty crop research and extension efforts. Margaret received a BSc in global resource systems from The University of British Columbia and a graduate certificate in rural project management from Makerere University.

Fungi on the Forest Farm

Learn the benefits of incorporating mushrooms into your forest farm. We’ll discuss mushrooms that grow well in the wild, how to turn forest byproducts into food and medicine, and how fungi efficiently help increase soil fertility.

Chris Parker

The Forest Farmacy
Chris is a self-taught mycologist and started cultivating mushrooms at 15. For the past 30 years, he has expanded his knowledge of mycology, agriculture, permaculture, and ecology with a focus on fungi. Chris is a member of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians and carries knowledge of ancestral food practices and other skills.

A Beginner’s Guide to Forest Farming

This workshop will introduce forest farming and the methods used. We’ll discuss getting started with your land, staying in touch, and the best way to keep learning and growing as you go. Be prepared to leave this session with a list of GO-DO’s and key Tips-n’-Traps that will put you on the path to becoming a Beginning Forest Farmer.

David Brown

Mountain Cove Forest Farm
David is an avid forest gardener turned forest farmer and has grown native woodland plants for the past 30 years. He is excited to explore existing and new markets for in-demand plants that can be grown, harvested, and processed locally, naturally, and sustainably.

Assessing Sites for Forest Farming

What considerations go into selecting a location to grow forest cultivars? This session will cover a variety of freely available technologies and easy-to-use techniques for assessing forest farming site suitability. Attendees will leave with resources that help them establish and manage forest farms.

John Munsell

Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
John is an author, co-author, professor, and Extension specialist in forest management at Virginia Tech. He teaches agroforestry and studies the environmental, social, and economic benefits of agroforestry and sustainable forestry practices. Additionally, he is the former president of the Association for Temperate Agroforestry and received its Outreach and Education Award in 2019.

Advanced Woodland Botanicals

In this workshop, we’ll delve a little deeper into what it takes to be a commercial producer of woodland botanicals. In addition to covering propagation, planting, protection, and harvesting, we’ll discuss the size of the growing area, income potential, time commitment, market opportunities, buyer relationships, and county and state issues you should know.

Jeanine Davis

NC State University
Jeanine is a researcher and extension specialist at NC State University. Her program in Western North Carolina focuses on organic agriculture and the development of new commercial crops, including hops, truffles, hemp, and woodland herbs. She is the author of Growing and Marketing Ginseng, Goldenseal, and Other Woodland Medicinals and co-owner of Our Tiny Farm, a mini-donkey farm in Etowah.

Gardening

Chris Smith is our Gardening Track Leader. Chris is the executive director of the Utopian Seed Project, a crop-trialing non-profit working to celebrate diversity in food and farming. He is the co-host of The Okra Pod Cast and his book, The Whole Okra, which won a James Beard Foundation Award in 2020. At this year’s conference, he will teach Profitable Seed Growing and Grow This, Not That: Selecting appropriate varieties and crops for your region.

Grow This, Not That: Selecting appropriate varieties and crops for your region

Many gardening practices focus on controlling the environment through irrigation, pesticides, fungicides, herbicides, and greenhouses, which are expensive and potentially environmentally harmful. Learn to select crops and varieties more appropriate to your local conditions to grow in a more accessible and environmentally-conscious way.

Chris Smith

The Utopian Seed Project & Blue and Yellow Makes
Chris is the executive director of the Utopian Seed Project, a crop-trialing non-profit working to celebrate diversity in food and farming. He is the co-host of The Okra Pod Cast and his book, The Whole Okra, which won a James Beard Foundation Award in 2020.

Intro to Seed Saving

This workshop is for gardeners and small-scale farmers who want to save their own seeds. Seed saving is often an easy and accessible skill that offers greater independence and community resilience. We will discuss the advantages of saving seeds, share how to get started, and demo some essential, low-tech seed-saving tools and processes.

Leeza Regensburger

Utopian Seed Project & WNC Seed Collective
Leeza is an NC farmer specializing in seed saving and traditional plant breeding. She is passionate about expanding the Southeast’s seed production culture for food security and climate adaptation. She is an early member of the WNC Seed Collective, which will provide education and access to equipment through its mobile seed processing trailer.

 

Caribbean Crops in the Carolinas

This workshop will cover cultivating Caribbean crops, such as taro and yams, in northern climates. We will discuss Caribbean foodways and the importance of members of the diaspora stewarding their traditional foods. Learn low-cost methods to grow these crops at home.

Brandon Ruiz

Yucayeke Farms
Brandon is an urban farmer and community herbalist. He runs Yucayeke Farms, a farming and herbalism project focused on supplying the surrounding community with culturally-relevant foods. His work focuses on providing accessible medicines and educational information, particularly to Black, Indigenous, and People of Color. His roots are in Puerto Rico, and he works with medicines from the Caribbean and Appalachia.

 

Bright FRUITures: Growing small fruit successfully

Gain practical and applied knowledge of growing various small fruits on a homestead scale in Appalachia. Participants will receive basic knowledge of organic production practices for growing strawberries, blackberries, blueberries, and grapes and will be confident to start producing fruits in their own gardens.

Craig Mauney

Shady Hollow Farm
Craig grew up in the mountains of Cherokee County and studied agriculture at Berea College. He has experience in gardening and landscape design, with particular interests in woodland botanicals and unusual edibles like pawpaw. Craig is the Extension’s area specialized agent in commercial vegetable and fruit production and operates his small forest farm in Zirconia, Shady Hollow Farm.

Herbs

Noelle Joy is the Herbs Track Leader. Noelle is in the final year of a PhD in horticulture studying hemp and is significantly involved with Skywoman, a platform for communities developing food sovereignty and cooperative economies. She has studied herbal medicine and horticulture for various degrees and served as the program manager of UGarden Herbs for five years. Noelle will be facilitating a lunchtime discussion on Saturday: Building a Cooperative Herb Industry in the Southeast! Check out our Special Events page for more information. 

Southern Folk Medicine: Stories of plants and people

Taking a historical approach, we’ll explore the stories of our elders and the energetics of the plants used, and the innovative ways they created healing. Learn to recognize the importance of the stories in your community and apply historical language and frameworks for building reciprocal relationships with the land. Leave with ideas for building a plant communion practice for liberation.

Brit Hessler

Slow Land
Brit Hessler is a queer, transient farmer with extensive experience in fiber artistry, folk herbalism, and looking at ways to disrupt current institutions through non-hierarchical community building.

Mind, Body, Spirit Medicine

In this workshop, we will explore herbs to ease the nervous system in combination with gentle movement, music, and, intuitive inquiry. We will create an environment to begin to notice the correlations between spagyric alchemy and the alchemy of the body, mind and spirit. Please arrive with whatever you will need to be comfortably seated on the floor.

Jamie Marie Spears

Jamie Marie Spears

Your Mother’s Medicine 

Jamie Marie, Founder of Your Mother’s Medicine, is an Indigenous Herbalist, Alchemist and Musician. She is a descendant of Nanyehi and Citizen of the Cherokee Nation. She is passionate about inspiring awakening and creativity within others and draws upon her relationship with the elements, plants, songs and ceremony to heal the body, mind and spirit. Jamie is the market director for the Indigenous Walls Project and a mother to two beautiful children residing in Black Mountain, NC

Herbal Basics for All

This workshop will answer common questions herbal beginners ask and give you the information you need to use herbs safely and effectively for everyday health issues. Whether you are a do-it-yourself herbalist who likes to make herbal preparations at home or want to know what to ask for when you shop for herbs, this is the class for you!

Patricia Kyritsi Howell

Patricia is the author of Medicinal Plants of the Southern Appalachians and the founder-director of the BotanoLogos School of Herbal Studies in Northeast Georgia. After 28 years as a clinical herbalist, she recently closed her practice to devote time to teaching and mentoring student practitioners. She also serves as the admissions coordinator for the American Herbalists Guild.

My Cup of Tea: Exploring water-based preparations

In this class, you will learn about several water-based herbal preparations, including infusions, decoctions, syrups, and poultices. Chelsea will discuss a selection of easily accessible, versatile herbs and offer suggestions for their application. You will leave this course brimming with ideas on simple, actionable ways to put herbalism into practice.

Chelsea Wall

Black South Apothecary
Chelsea, the owner of Black South Apothecary, is a perennial herb grower partnering with local Atlanta farms to create a small-batch product line. She is also a practicing herbalist straddling the line between community and clinical practice. She seeks to practice harm reduction, embrace seasonality, and disrupt gentrification—personally and in her business.

Holistic Forestry

Ian Snider is the Holistic Forestry Track Leader. 

Controlled Burns: Prescribed fire for the family forest

with Shawn Swartz (SATURDAY) and Dakota Wagner (SUNDAY)
Become acquainted with the vital role of fire in forest management and the long history of fire in the South. Participants will leave the session ready to take the next steps in hands-on fire experience or have a controlled burn on their land.

Shawn Swartz

Forest Stewards Guild 
Shawn is a registered NC forester, SAF forester, and ISA arborist. He holds an associate degree in forest management and a bachelor’s and master’s degree in natural resource management. His approach to forest management involves silvicultural methods that mimic historical disturbance regimes and natural variability. His professional interests include restoring forest species, non-timber forest products, and woody perennials.

Dakota Wagner

Forest Stewards Guild
Dakota is passionate about bringing the concepts of ecological forestry to all types of communities, particularly those not traditionally involved in natural resource management. She is currently the Southeast region coordinator with the Forest Stewards Guild and the executive board chair of ForestHer NC. She is also involved in coordinating the Southern Blue Ridge Prescribed Burn Association.

Woody Ethnobotany

Learn about the food, medicine, and craft applications of woody plants. After covering major tree and shrub families, we’ll discuss key identification factors for each, touching on their common and obscure non-timber uses and their connections with other lifeforms such as birds and fungi. Our last topic of discussion will be exotic invasive woodies as one possible means of control.

Marc Williams

Botany Every Day, Plants and Healers, United Plant Savers
Marc has taught hundreds of classes about humans and their interface with other life forms. An enthusiastic ethnobiologist, he has a BA in environmental studies and sustainable agriculture and an MA in Appalachian studies and sustainable development. Marc has over 20 years of experience in various restaurants and farms and travels throughout the United States and worldwide.

 

Finding Love, Nature, and Magic in Your Garden or Farm

How can we listen to and understand what nature is telling us and transform annoyances into joy so we can work in harmony with all the plants, animals, bugs, and living things around us (including people)? Learn strategies for tuning into the messages that nature’s beings convey to us so we can live in balance and harmony on this Earth.

Maria Rodale

Rodale Institute
Maria is an explorer in search of the mysteries of the universe. Author, artist, activist, and recovering CEO. She serves on the board of the Rodale Institute and advocates for the potential of organic regenerative farming to heal the damage wrought by pesticides and industrial agricultural practices. Maria is a mother, grandmother, and crazy gardener who lives in Pennsylvania.

A Forestry Consultant: Roles, responsibilities, and more

This workshop will teach you what you need to know to become or hire a forestry consultant. We will cover the services and benefits they provide, selection criteria, and challenges and opportunities in consulting. We will also go over rules and regulations impacting forestry as well as the role of different federal and state agencies involved in regulation and enforcement.

Sam Cook

SCJ General Services, LLC
Sam has made his mark on multiple aspects of forestry during his esteemed career. He is currently the executive director of Forest Assets and VP of the Natural Resources Foundation for the College of Natural Resources at NC State University. In addition, he coordinates the management of the forest assets owned land by the State of NC, The Endowment Fund of NC State Univ., and has served on the boards of many key forestry organizations.

Livestock & Poultry

Meagan Coneybeer is our Track Leader for the Livestock & Poultry Track. Meagan has over a decade of experience breeding, raising, and processing chickens, turkeys, and waterfowl. She provides informative and accessible education about sustainable poultry through the Livestock Conservancy, Mother Earth News, and OGS. She also produces heritage poultry on her farm and works as the director of mentorship and research at the NC School of Science and Math.

For Goat’s Sake

This workshop will cover the basics of running an artisan goat dairy. Learn about a seasonal goat dairy’s facility requirements, animal management, and cheese-making schedules.

Chris Owen

Spinning Spider Creamery
Alongside her husband and sons, Chris has been involved with dairy goats and making cheese for over 20 years through her business, Spinning Spider Creamery. She currently milks and manages a herd of Saanen, Alpine, and Toggenburg goats, making artisan farmstead cheese that the family sells at local farmers’ markets.

Multi-species Rotational Grazing

This workshop will cover pasture design, including fencing options and size requirements for various species. We’ll look at multiple forages to plant in and outside the pasture to cut and drop for supplementation. Regional predators will be discussed, along with strategies to protect your operation and make it less appealing to carnivores.

Tim Burke

Idle Acres Farm
Tim has been a farmer, a father, a builder, a cook, and a lover of all animals. Today’s incarnation: a turkey farmer and a renovation contractor. He owns Idle Acres Farm in Nebo, NC.

Living on the Land

René Foster is our Living on the Land Track Leader. René is an avid home-grower/the micro farmer behind Five Dog Farms, working toward further expanding into permaculture. So far, she has four dogs, two cats, and too many chickens. She loves to learn continually and has become immersed in sustainability and bettering her impact on the environment.

Intro to Home Canning

Learn the basics of home canning, an essential skill for extending the life of your produce. We’ll explore equipment, processing methods, science, and safety. Students will walk away with helpful and seasoned tips for ensuring safe and successful sealed jars.

Ashley English

Small Measure
Ashley is the author of 11 books, including her latest, Home Apothecary with Ashley English. She chronicles her adventures in food, parenting, and beyond at smallmeasure.com. Ashley lives in Candler, NC, with her husband, Glenn, their two young sons, Huxley and Alistair, and a menagerie of animals.

Native Plants for the Vegetable Garden

Native plants benefit us, our gardens, and the landscapes and ecosystems we depend on. Learn about the benefits of native plants and the harm caused by invasive plants. We will discuss how native plants can attract beneficial insects, beautify vegetable and flower gardens, and provide nutrition to the dinner plate.

Adam Bigelow

Bigelow’s Botanical Excursions
Adam is a horticulturist and amateur botanist who lives in Cullowhee, NC, and has been studying plants and wildflowers of Southern Appalachia for over 20 years. Adam is the owner/operator of Bigelow’s Botanical excursions, an eco-tour business leading guided plant walks in WNC. He is an avid organic gardener and founded and managed the Cullowhee Community Garden for ten years.

 

Homemade Probiotics

Diverse soil life is essential for sustainable local food systems, but amendments and inoculants can be costly and inaccessible. Discover all the fantastic benefits probiotics offer, how to use them in your garden, and how to make them at home! We will use lactobacillus in a demonstration and discuss all it can do for our bodies and our plant friends.

Lawrence Seals

Seals Family Farm
The Seals Family Farm was established in 2016 in Riverdale, GA. As a family, they share their passion for sustainable living through workshops, cultivating community, and growing a hyperlocal food system. They created an app, FarmFresh 24/7, which connects people with growers to access food, herbs, and other products locally, paving the way to local sovereignty.

 

Cultivating Crafts

Are you curious about making art supplies from plants you can grow and harvest in the wild? We’ll cover different plants for paper making, basketry, and natural dye and paint. We’ll review plant histories and growing considerations and explore various sample materials together.

Alyssa Sacora

The Patchwork Underground
Alyssa is a craftsperson exploring paper making, book arts, basketry, and natural dyes with local plants. She encourages reciprocal relationships between people and plants through teaching hands-on workshops at The Patchwork Underground. Guided by ancient traditions and curiosity, Alyssa cultivates sustainable art practices that take care of the soil, minimize resource use, and inspire others to do the same.

Mushrooms

Olga Katic is our Mushrooms Track Leader.

Medicinal Mushrooms

Meet six medicinal native fungi (Turkey Tail, Reishi, Lion’s Mane, Cordyceps, Maitake, and Oysters) and discover the therapeutic compounds growing in our forest. We’ll cover how to process mushrooms into medicine and incorporate them into your diet to get the most from these fungal allies!

Chris Parker

The Forest Farmacy
Chris is a self-taught mycologist and started cultivating mushrooms at 15. For the past 30 years, he has expanded his knowledge of mycology, agriculture, permaculture, and ecology with a focus on fungi. Chris is a member of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians and carries knowledge of ancestral food practices and other skills.

Mycoremedian Fundamentals

After a brief overview of fungal growth cycles, participants will learn easy, practical mycoremediation applications for home and/or farm. Mycoremediation is trending in agricultural and recycling industries. Companies are very interested in reducing contaminates, environmental pollution, and hazardous waste through mycoremediation. Several fascinating research studies will be presented.

Shannon Phillips

Winding Brook Farms
Shannon is a citizen scientist specializing in “changing the world, one mushroom at a time.” He has collaborated with other growers and universities regionally and internationally as a self-taught mushroom cultivator and fungal researcher. He started Winding Brook Farms – Mushrooms and More as a hobby and has nurtured it into a growing business.

Ethical Mushroom Foraging

This session will give participants a foundation in foraging wild mushrooms safely and ethically. We will cover identification, legalities, sustainability, the function of fungi, most common choice species, and more. This class will get participants inspired to explore the fun world of fungi!

Stesha Warren

FoothillsFoodHub.org
Stesha is a Blue Ridge native living in and operating Eliana’s Garden with her husband and two children. Stesha received her BS in agricultural education and is pursuing her MS in natural resources. She shares her knowledge of mushroom identification through Mushroom Mountain and local colleges and serves as an agroforester for Appalachian Sustainable Development.

Sustainable Mushroom Farming

For growers of all skill levels, the class will teach you how to use recycled materials and low-tech options to grow mushrooms year-round in any environment. Come learn how to incorporate a variety of fresh and nutritious, protein-rich mushrooms to your table from your farm or homestead without a big budget or fancy equipment.

Megan Deaton - Speaker for 2023 Spring Conference

Megan Deaton

Megan’s Mushrooms & Mushroom Mountain 
Megan started her commercial mushroom farm, Megan’s Mushrooms, in 2017 with a small budget and limited resources. Since then, she has grown her operation to 200 pounds of mushrooms a week in just 100 square feet. In consultations with farms and start-ups, Megan has worked with budgets of all sizes to help others cultivate mushrooms commercially and for personal use.

Permaculture

Luke Costlow is our Permaculture Track Leader. Luke is husband to Macon (a letterpress artist) and father to Dorothy (a toddler and force of nature). He’s a permaculturalist, citizen scientist, amateur ecologist, thru-hiker, mountain-lover, and Appalachian homesteader. He uses his business, Gribley Permaculture, to help people on the same path. This year, he is teaching Design for Zone Zero: Applying the permaculture framework at home in this track.

Closing the Loop: DIY Feed

Learn to raise chickens and pigs without store-bought grain. Permaculture teaches us to close loops: animal waste streams become compost used to grow food for healthy animals, meat, and eggs. This workshop will teach you how to convert waste from one system into fuel for the next. These tested techniques are highly effective and replicable on your land.

Billy Bond

Perma Pastures Farm
Billy is a former US Army sapper and radio talk show host, IBEW journeyman electrician with 25 years of experience, YouTube content creator, a trained butcher, and a permaculture designer. His farm focuses on producing the highest quality meat with few external inputs, and my passion is to teach others how to do the same.

Meadows in the Margins

Learn how to establish a native-dominated meadow and grow in often overlooked spaces! In this workshop, attendees will learn about meadows and species lists. They will leave with the confidence to establish meadow-themed native plantings for steep or dry areas, deeply-shaded zones, areas that are consistently wet or have standing water, suburban/HOA areas, and pasture forage.

Nathan Buchanan

Wildbud Natives
Nathan owns Wildbud Natives, a conservation nursery in Marshall, NC, which grows native plants for conservation and restoration applications. He lives with his wife and daughter in the Shelton Laurel community.

Design for Zone Zero: Applying the permaculture framework at home

We all spend huge portions of our lives in our homes. How can we use a permaculture mindset to optimize and energize these spaces? This class will introduce the permaculture framework and principles focusing on the home environment. This workshop will be valuable for you regardless of whether you have land, are new to permaculture, or are a seasoned practitioner.

Luke Costlow

Gribley Permaculture, LLC
Luke “Gribley” is husband to Macon (a letterpress artist) and father to Dorothy (a toddler and force of nature). He’s a permaculturalist, citizen scientist, amateur ecologist, thru-hiker, mountain-lover, and Appalachian homesteader. He uses his business, Gribley Permaculture, to help people on the same path.

Pathways to Whole System Connections

Books, Indigenous Peoples, and others are asking us to connect or reconnect to oneness with all life. What are ways we can understand this oneness? We will look at intuition, opening hearts, all senses, non judgement, and what are we feeling. Can these connection help us grow healthy food, heal our soils, nurture ourselves, and our partner plants and animals?

Jim Smith

Earth and Spirit Design
Jim was a student fortunate enough to have had great teachers, worked in many places, and interacted with many cultures and ideas around growing food. His years working as an educator, landscaper, organic farmer, and organizer allow him to share his experience and seek connections and conversations.

Pests & Pollinators

Angie Lavezzo is our Pests & Pollinators Track Leader. Angie has almost 30 years of gardening experience. She owns the 13-acre Painted Crow Farm in Candler, where she practices what she preaches. Angie and her partner, Eddie, maintain an orchard, vegetable and pollinator gardens, and acres of native habitat for critter friends. She currently works at CFSA as the communications coordinator. This year, she is teaching Building Bee Boxes in this track.

Natural Pest Management

Participants will learn to develop and implement agroecological pest management plans for various common and persistent agricultural pests in Western North Carolina. This class will focus on research-backed landscape manipulations and cultural practices that are economically feasible, easy to execute, and suited for growers and farmers at multiple scales.

Joshua Arnold

Warren Wilson College
Joshua earned his PhD at the University of California Berkeley, where he studied agroecology, applied entomology, and landscape effects to beneficial insects in urban agriculture. He is a “science, practice, movement” agroecologist and believes that the newest technologies do not simply answer most agricultural problems. His greatest joys are teaching and working alongside community partners.

Planting for Pollinators: Size, shape, and scope matters

Not all plants are created equal! Learn how to discern the best plants to support and attract the widest variety of wildlife in your region. We will review bloom shapes, leaf chemicals, strategic planting tips, and other best pollinator practices. As a bonus, learn how native plants benefit the ecosystem and can significantly combat drainage issues and erosion.

Brannen Basham and Jill Jacobs

Spriggly’s Beescaping
Brannen and Jill own Spriggly’s Beescaping, a local nature education and habitat restoration business. They create educational exhibits, have published two books, write for local and national publications, and offer various pollinator-focused landscaping services. Additionally, Spriggly’s offers an online course series, Gardening for the Planet, featuring on-demand videos, guides, and other resources.

Building Bee Boxes

Native bees, our most important pollinators, are harmed by land use change and nesting site loss. This workshop will cover options for housing our bee friends, including basic box construction, hole width and depths, materials, and seasonal maintenance. Bring a clean empty milk or juice container if you’d like to make and take a bee house home!

Angie Lavezzo

Carolina Farm Stewardship Association (CFSA)
Angie has almost 30 years of gardening experience. She owns the 13-acre Painted Crow Farm in Candler, where she practices what she preaches. Angie and her partner, Eddie, maintain an orchard, vegetable and pollinator gardens, and acres of native habitat for critter friends. She currently works at CFSA as the communications coordinator.

Milkweed and Monarchs

Get familiar with monarchs and milkweed! This workshop will cover the biology, lifecycle, and migration of monarchs. We will also talk about the importance of milkweed and how to stratify, germinate and propagate it! Even if you are already familiar with monarchs, you may learn a secret or two about them and tips about raising them and milkweed.

Vickie Sealock and Jennifer Hott

I26 West NC Welcome Center
Vickie was instrumental in starting the monarch program at the welcome center on I-26, where she is the manager, and for starting the native pollinator gardens at Beech Glen Community Center. She has over 40 years of gardening experience. Jennifer has over 25 years of gardening experience. She has been a monarch enthusiast for over 10 years and has given many talks on monarchs and milkweed at the welcome center.

Soils

Mark Dempsey is our Soils Track Leader. Mark is a soil conservationist at the Carolina Farm Stewardship Association, helping farmers implement better farming practices through technical assistance and CFSA’s field research program. He is a cover crop specialist and worked for many years as a researcher studying soil microbiology, weed science, and cover crop management in organic no-till production. This year, he is teaching Soil Health Principles in Action in this track. 

Nurturing the Soil Food Web: A biological approach to growing

Learn about the soil food web and how you can work with nature to provide plants with nutrient cycling and disease suppression while building soil structure. While using a biological approach to growing, we will discuss how to utilize compost, liquid compost amendments, and cover crops to get the best performance from soils and crops.

Troy Hinke

Urban Worm Company and Living Roots Compost Tea
Troy began his career with soil biology serving as Rodale Institute’s compost specialist, working with Dr. Elaine Ingham. In 2017, he started Living Roots Compost Tea, where he consults with growers and composters worldwide. He is the chief soil biologist at Urban Worm Company, providing educational content on all things compost. Troy also hosts What’s Brewing? A Compost Podcast.

Soil Health Principles in Action

All growers should focus on soil health to prevent erosion, improve crop health, and build farm resilience. In this workshop, we’ll focus on ways to implement the five soil health principles, covering a wide variety of practical techniques to keep your soil healthy and crops happy.

Mark Dempsey

Carolina Farm Stewardship Association (CFSA)
Mark is a soil conservationist at the Carolina Farm Stewardship Association, helping farmers implement better farming practices through technical assistance and CFSA’s field research program. He is a cover crop specialist and worked for many years as a researcher studying soil microbiology, weed science, and cover crop management in organic no-till production.

Practical Soil Carbon Management

Soils play a critical role in the carbon cycle. Join this workshop to learn about options for managing soils to reduce the carbon footprint and enhance the climate resilience of your farm. We will cover five practical steps you can take to increase soil carbon storage on your land while cultivating the well-being of ecosystems, people, and communities in your region.

Laura Lengnick

Carbon Harvest & Cultivating Resilience
Laura has worked towards the just transformation of food and farming for over 30 years as a researcher, policy-maker, educator, activist, and farmer. She explores climate change, resilience, and the future of food through the stories of 45 American farmers in her 2022 book, Resilient Agriculture.

Techniques of Natural Farming

This course will introduce the basics of natural farming, including a practical understanding of indigenous microorganisms and their production, fermented plant juice, and lactic acid bacteria creation. These various ideas and practices will provide you with a conceptual understanding of how fungal systems can heal our soils.

Geoff Hartnell

Hopewell Farms
Geoff has been involved in regenerative farming since 2011. He has managed a non-profit regenerative small farm in Nashville and taught agriculture classes at all levels. Geoff collaborates with East African and Latin American farmers to build community-based regenerative systems. He recently received a master’s degree in sustainable agriculture from Sam Houston State University.

Sustainable Living

Keenan Phillips is the Sustainable Living Track Leader. Keenan is an experienced builder, mechanic, and tinkerer. He has installed multiple solar systems and wired, built, and plumbed several homes from scratch through his construction business in WNC. Keenan is passionate about affordability and building empowerment, liberty, and justice for ALL through skill-building. He also teaches these subjects via Wild Abundance’s Tiny House courses. This year, he is teaching Intro to DIY Solar in this track.

Off-Grid Solar 101

Are you interested in transitioning your farm or home to renewable solar energy? This workshop will get you started by sharing foundational knowledge such as site assessment for solar, design for small off-grid solar systems, and battery storage (especially with nickel-iron batteries).

Keenan Phillips

Asheville Tool Library
Keenan is an experienced builder, mechanic, and tinkerer. He has installed multiple solar systems and wired, built, and plumbed several homes from scratch through his construction business in WNC. Keenan is passionate about affordability and building empowerment, liberty, and justice for ALL through skill-building. He also teaches these subjects via Wild Abundance’s Tiny House courses.

This Is Not a Drill! Tool Use and Repair

Get a handle on general tool design concepts so you can select the appropriate tools and have the knowledge you need to care for them. We will discuss some essential tools and their common uses in gardening, homesteading and minor construction, as well as how to fix common issues that arise for these tools.

Stanton Pearson

Asheville Tool Library
Stanton is a volunteer in the Asheville Tool Library Maintenance department who has fixed and modified many broken tools. He is also a licensed general contractor and Brazilian jiu-jitsu enthusiast.

Invasives in Native Culture

How do you study other cultures and incorporate ancient techniques without appropriation? In this workshop, Nancy, a woman of mixed heritage, will share how she added value to plants no one else wanted. Learn Native American stories of respect for all sentient beings by turning a stick into a vessel.

Nancy Basket

Kudzu Kabin Designs
Nancy has been a kudzu basket maker for 30 years. She learned to weave her first pine needle basket in 1980. Nancy is a public school artist in residence and teaches at Earthskills Gatherings throughout the region. Her works, such as substantial woven and freeform chandeliers, are installed throughout North Carolina.

Harvesting Rainwater: Drops in the bucket

Collecting abundant rainwater can help save costs and lower your reliance on the grid. This workshop combines engineering and design elements with practical advice on building and using rainwater collection systems for garden irrigation.

Dan Hettinger

Living Web Farms
Dan is the biochar manager for Living Web Farms, where he helps develop appropriate technology for closing waste streams and maximizing efficiency on small farms. Dan is a systems thinker, father, educator, artist, amateur scientist, fabricator, and organizer for WNC Repair Cafe.

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