Programs & Resources for Farmers

Organic Growers School’s programs provide a forum for farmers to build strong peer-to-peer networks for skill sharing, problem solving, and mentoring for success.

Apprentice Link

Free Database of WNC Farms • Available Year-Round

Apprentice Link connects people who are serious about learning sustainable farming with farmers who are willing to teach them in an apprenticeship setting. Apprentice Link focuses on farms in Western North Carolina that participate in the CRAFT program.

Consulting Services

Available Year-Round

OGS offers a variety of consulting services with hourly follow-up support and reduced fees available, including 1) assessment of land that you own or want to purchase; 2) assessment of your farm, garden, or homestead; and 3) guidance for your land-based project.

CRAFT Farmer Network

April 2020 - October 2020 •  Times & Locations Vary

WNC Collaborative Regional Alliance for Farmer Training (CRAFT) is a farmer-led effort to bring established farmers, farm apprentices, and aspiring farmers together for year-long training in the art and science of sustainable agriculture.

Farm Beginnings® Year-Long Farmer Training

October 2020 – September 2021  •  Now Offered Virtually

Farm Beginnings® Year-Long Farmer Training is a 200+ hour comprehensive training, networking, and mentoring program led by farmers in around the Southern Appalachian community. The program will help you build the skills to start and expand your own successful farm business through coursework, conferences, farm tours, and one-on-one mentorship.

Farm Dreams

2020 and 2021 Dates Coming Soon! 

 

If you’re in the exploratory stages of starting your own farm, this entry-level workshop is designed just for you. You will receive practical, common-sense information on sustainable farming and hear from experienced farmers running successful farms in WNC.

Holistic Crop Management

January - February 2021 • Six-Part Webinar Series

Growing a viable farm business is sustained by continuous learning of the land and your products. In this workshop series, growers across Southern Appalachia will gain tools to manage their crop production for whole-farm success. Workshops in each location will feature farmers and agricultural experts from the area. Participants will be able to build a network with experienced growers who know farming and the land.

Journeyperson

December 2020 – March 2022 • Virtual Program with Optional Gatherings

Journeyperson helps farmers expand and improve their farm business by planning smartly and going in deeper to analyze their individual business needs. We’ll take a dive into holistic financial planning, revising goals and values, and detailed enterprise analysis, all based on a solid foundation of your own farm numbers. The program is designed for farmers who have been independently farming for 3 or more years and are serious about operating their farm business.

Mentor Services

February 2021 – February 2022 • One-on-One Farmer Mentorship

Mentor Services supports beginning and intermediate farmers by partnering them with experienced regional farmers who can provide them with one-on-one practical planning skills in the areas of farm design and production, marketing and business development, systems management, and connect them to the regional farming community. By serving as Mentors, regional farmers will be able to pass on the skills and knowledge that they possess to other farmers and help to build collaboration and community among the farming community. 

Farming Resources

Online Library • Available Year-Round

A free repository of useful information, resources, tools, and support organizations for organic and sustainable farmers in the Southern Appalachians.

Spring Conference

March 2021  •  Online and at Various Locations

The Spring Conference is a one-of-a-kind event that offers regionally specific workshops on organic growing and sustainable living. We will open registration and publish the 2021 schedule, class and workshop descriptions, and instructor bios in mid-December 2020.

OGS Farmer Programs are made possible by our farmer network and our funding partners: CLIF bar Family Foundation, Southern Sustainable Agriculture, Research and Education UNFI Foundation, WNC Bridge Foundation, Harry Chapin Foundation, Walnut Cove, New Visions, and USDA Rural Development. Our Growth Partners (year-round program support) are: Carolina Farm Credit, Earth Tools, Buchi,  Living Web Farms, Gaia Herbs and Chelsea Green Publishing. Our Media Sponsors are WNCW, Asheville FM and BPR. .