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

Year-Round Training Program

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®

October 2018 – September 2019  •  Times and Locations Vary

Farm Beginnings® is a one-year training, networking, and mentoring program led by farmers in WNC. 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

Saturday, Nov. 10, 2018 • 10:00AM–4:00PM • Boone, NC

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.

Farming Resources

Online Library

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

Farm Pathways

Whole-Farm Training and Land Access Program • Year-Round

A partnership between Organic Growers School, WNC Farm Link, and Southern Appalachian Highlands Conservancy that provides training, networking, and farmland access.

Finding Farmland Workshop

Thursday, Nov. 1, 2018  •  10:00AM–6:00PM  •  Mills River, NC

Accessing land is one of the most complex financial decisions you’ll make as a farmer. Join National Young Farmers Coalition, Organic Growers School, and Southern Appalachian Highlands Conservancy for a workshop designed to prepare early career farmers to approach land access with confidence.

Harvest Conference

Fall 2019 • Warren Wilson College

An educational event that offers affordable classes on organic growing and sustainable living. The September 2018 conference featured a small selection of 2-day workshops taught by outstanding guest speakers. Fall 2019 event details coming Summer 2019.

Navigating Farm Labor

Monday, Dec. 10, 2018  •  3:00–8:00PM  •  Alexander, NC

This 6-hour workshop will showcase how to structure labor on a small farm through the eyes of established regional farmers. Legal and financial considerations will be highlighted and discussed to better understand which labor structure best fits your farming model.

Spring Conference

Friday–Sunday, Mar. 8–10 2019  •  UNC Asheville

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 2019 schedule, class and workshop descriptions, and instructor bios in mid-December 2018.

OGS Farmer Programs are made possible by our farmer network and our funding partners: USDA-NIFA Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program, Grant #2016-70017-25341, USDA Rural Business Development Program, Community Foundation of WNC, Polk County Community Foundation, CLIF Bar Family Foundation, New Belgium Brewing, Simply Organic 1%. Our Growth Partners (year-round program support) are: Carolina Farm Credit, French Broad Food Coop, Mountain Rose Herbs, Earth Tools, Biltmore Company, Red Moon Herbs, Living Web Farms, and Chelsea Green Publishing. Our Media Sponsors are Hendersonville Community Co-op, and WNCW.