The Massachusetts chapter of the Northeast Organic Farming Association. NOFA/Mass welcomes everyone who cares about food, where it comes from and how it’s grown

Growing Organically Since 1982

2019 Workshops by time

Click the Session to see the workshops

Adapting to Climate Change on Vegetable and Berry Farms (Intermediate)

Farmers are on the front lines of dealing with the impacts of climate change.  This session will explore the emerging and innovative strategies diversified vegetable and berry growers in the northeast are using to adapt to increasingly extreme weather events. Join us to look at results from a regional survey of 200 farmers from across the northeast followed by discussion.

Alissa White: Graduate student at the University of Vermont


The Evolving No-Till Farm (All Levels)

After 4 years in various stages of tillage reduction on 2 _ acres (vegetable crops integrated with animal rotations and perennial crops) we are still learning. 2018 delivered excessive rain in July-August after heavy April snow followed by drought in May-June. I will share our ongoing evolution as we strive to be more successful and mindful in our care of the land.

Julie Rawson: certified organic farmer at Many Hands Organic Farm since 1982 where we integrate everything.


A Pyramid Approach to Year-Round Crops Production (Intermediate)

Our fall-spring CSA relies on a pyramid-structured planting and harvest plan, moving into increasingly protected spaces and back out again from Nov-March. We will discuss our infrastructure (pellet-stove fueled hydronic heated bench system, heated greenhouses, unheated hoophouses, and caterpillar tunnels) and our cropping strategies for maximum production.

Jeremy Barker-Plotkin: Board President, Organic Farming Research Foundation. Co-owns and operates Simple Gifts Farm in Amherst, MA.


A DIY "Cattle Panel' Greenhouse You Can Build ( for under $250) (Introductory)

Have you longed to have a little greenhouse to grow early spring greens, keep your summer tomatos and peppers late into the fall and perhaps  propagate some trees and shrubs? Build one! We put together a low cost cattle panel greenhouse ten years ago that is still going strong.We will go over siting, materials and step by step building instructions.

Bette Low: Bette Low is owner of Birchwood Farm of Westport and has been a lifelong Do It Yourselfer.


The Science of Assessing and Improving the Health of Your Soil (Introductory)

Science has evolved to recognize soil as a dynamic, living resource that requires proper care to maintain and improve.  This presentation will cover some basics of how a healthy soil functions, how to asses the health of your soil, and methods of improving soil health on various types of land, along with information on federal and local programs that can help you.

Kate Gervais: WCCD Soil Conservationist.

Maggie Payne: USDA NRCS Resource Soil Scientist.



How to Make 100 Yards of Compost on Farm (Advanced)

This workshop is less about the science of composting, and more about the practice of composting on-farm (or backyard).  We'll cover the topics I believe are most important to compost success...  site access, equipment, moisture management and your nitrogen source.   Also, we’ll discuss the role of composting in the global flow/cycle of fertility.

Andrew Brousseau: Compost Operations Manager, Black Earth Compost - Andrew runs the daily operations converting food scraps into compost.


Winter Sowing (Introductory)

Winter sowing is an easy, inexpensive way to start seeds outside in the middle of winter, using recycled containers.  Seedlings germinate in spring and do not need to be hardened off. By collecting gallon milk jugs, using everyday potting soil, seeds, especially self seeding annuals and perennials, you can get a head start on your garden without grow lights and extra window shelf space.

Carrie Novak: Avid gardener, owner of micro-farm Partridgeville Farm.

Lucinda Oates: Gardener, seed saver, artist.


The Beekeeper's Year (Intermediate, Advanced)

The Beekeeper's Year will provide a step by step guide to the beekeeper's duties throughout the year and walk beginning beekeepers through the necessary management steps in a first and second year hive.  We will discuss the timing of and differences between a full hive inspection and a less invasive inspection. Participants will reflect on the upcoming year and plan for the apiary.

Angela Roell: Angela Roell, MS, owns Yard Birds Farm in and teaches beekeeping at UMass Amherst.


Help Your Land Attract More Pollinators (All Levels)

In this talk, we will discuss the connection between native bees and their flowers, and why they are so important to farming and food systems. He’ll touch on key elements of bee habitat, top ten plants that support native pollinators, the major bee families, how we can improve their numbers and ways to improve your farm property and home gardens.

Tom Sullivan: Owner of Pollinators Welcome, Tom educates about native insects and designs.


Emerging Perennial Crops for New England Farms (Part 1) (Intermediate, Advanced)

Perennial agriculture can sequester carbon and help regions adapt to climate change. While some perennial crops are common in the Northeast, many are not well known. We will explore the nutritional, culinary/ medicinal benefits and ecological roles of emerging nut, fruit, perennial vegetable, herb, and industrial perennial crops with market potential for Northeast farms.

Connor Stedman: M.S., is an ecological designer, farm planner, and educator on climate change mitigation.


Tree Leaf Fodder for Livestock and Climate Resilience(Introductory, Intermediate)

Seasonal tree leaf fodder preferences of cows, sheep, goats, and hogs, (fresh, dried, chipped and ensiled), photos of pollarded woodland at 3 Streams Farm, and other materials from SARE FNE 18-897 will be related to needs on the farms of participants, and to our wishes to heal ourselves and our part of the earth with the environmental and medicinal offerings of trees. 

Shana Hanson: Shana began ancient tree leaf harvest and storage practices to produce medicinal milk in 2011.  SARE FNE 18-897   


Building a Hoophouse Pasture Coop (Intermediate)

David and Pam will share their planning and construction of their new pasture coop for 80 birds. They will detail how and why they chose certain aspects of designing a versatile pasture coop and will have handouts that include plans.

Pam Raymond: Raises pastured broilers, layers, pastured pigs and grass-fed beef.

David Turner: Raises pastured broilers, layers, pastured pigs and grass-fed beef.



Farm Law 101 with the Legal Food Hub (Introductory)

This workshop hosted by the Legal Food Hub will provide an overview of important legal topics for farmers, including forming a business entity, what to consider when signing a lease, and more.

Alex Schluntz: Attorney and Regional Coordinator of Conservation Law Foundation's Legal Food Hub.


Farm Succession Plan: Our story of Passing the Farm Torch (All Levels)

After 40 years of farming, Mike Merner was ready to slow down. Earth Care Farm is well known for its high quality compost, produce and cattle. The challenge was to see how the farm could pass to the next generation of his 3 children without dividing the farm. We will present the Merners family succession plan as a model for successful family farm transition.

Jayne Senecal: Jayne Merner Senecal is the second generation to own and manage,  Earth Care Farm a diverse family farm in RI.


Requirements for Growing Hemp in MA (All Levels)

With a new MA policy authorizing the commercial field production of agricultural hemp, local farmers are interested in integrating this potentially lucrative crop into their farm business. This session will provide a thorough overview of the application, requirements and inspection process for legal hemp production. Time will be reserved for specific audience questions.

Taryn LaScola: Director of Crops and Pest Services Division, MDAR.


Building Successful Food System Networks in Rural Communities (Intermediate)

Strengthening community involvement in regional food systems can help address persistent health and economic challenges faced by many rural communities. The Greater Quabbin Food Alliance (a project of Mount Grace Land Conservation Trust) has successfully brought fresh local food into schools and revived local farmers markets. We will discuss our model for rural food systems organizing.

Kat Kowalski: TerraCorps-Americorps member with Mount Grace Land Conservation Trust

Jamie Pottern : Farm Conservation Program Manager, Mount Grace Land Conservation Trust

Rachel Stoler: Community Health Program Manager, FRCOG Partnership for Youth


Prison Gardens: Stragies for Therapy and Job Training (Introductory)

Prison gardens are proliferating across the US. Join TNGS to learn the ins and outs of developing and implementing horticulture programs in state prison yards. The workshop is open to those who are interested in therapeutic horticulture and vocational training. We’ll provide sample curriculum, best practices and approaches to providing garden training on a minimal budget.
Lisa Lee: Garden Educator and Administrator with The New Garden Society.

Renee Portanova: Co-Founder and Co-Director of The New Garden Society.


Essentials of Seed Saving (Beginner)

Saving locally-adapted seed is one of the foundational ways to preserve family, community, and regional food culture and food security. In this session we will cover the basics: selecting varieties for seed saving, understanding pollination, and isolation techniques, and judging seed ripeness.

Hannah Traggis: Senior horticulturalist and educator at Massachusetts Horticultural Society.

Bill Braun: Farmer and seed grower at Ivory Silo Farm in Westport, MA. 


Home Remedies from Common Garden Plants (All Levels)

Anna Muhammad of Springfield Food Policy Council and NOFA/Mass will share some recipes for health remedies and tonics that were passed to her from her mother. These can be prepared from common garden plants that can easily be grown in this region. Anna will discuss both the recipes and some gardening tips for growing the highest-quality and most medicinal plants.

Anna Muhammad: NOFA/Mass Food Access & Webinar Coordinator.


Astragalus, the Adaptable Adaptogen -- How to Use it and Why(Introductory)

Adaptogens help us adapt to stress, support normal metabolic processes and restore balance to the body's function. Astragalus is a potent yet mild herb that helps prevent and treat Lyme, many viruses and some bacterial infections. We will sample the powdered herb, tincture, cooked in rice and whole root, also learning how to make Astragalus tincture.

Sarah Stockwell-Arthen: Follows the work of Stephen Buhner ("Healing Lyme" & "Herbal Antivirals") and is remedy-maker at Hilltown Herbals.


Herbs are Nature’s Multivitamin (Introductory)

Herbs are nature’s multivitamin. They have also been first-line home remedies for common ailment management for centuries concerning digestion assimilation and elimination of foods. Many herbs that we can grow here or wild harvest in New England can manage vitamin deficiencies and our digestive issues. We’ll take a look at a few to grow and a few wild ones to harvest.

Rachel Ross: Rachel is a botanist, herbalist, midwife and women’s health care specialist. Also gardener and wild harvested of herbs.


Herbal Ghee: Debunking the Myths of Fat & Realizing it's Medicine (All Levels)

Ghee (clarified butter) is the local oil of New England and it is one of the healthiest fats for our bodies to optimize performance and balance energy. In this workshops we'll debunk the myths of fat and dive into the medicinal qualities of herbal ghee that have been utilized in Eastern Medicine for centuries.  Cooking demo, tasting & handouts included.

Hannah Jacobson-Hardy: Community Herbalist & Local Food Entrepreneur, founder of Sweet Birch Herbals & Full Moon Ghee based in Williamsburg, MA.

Balancing Plant Nutrition in a Time of Climate Disruption (All Levels)

Farming is becoming more difficult as seasonal weather patterns become increasingly erratic. This talk draws on skills from traditional agronomy, biodynamic principles, and visual assessment to help growers to make decisions about increasinly unpredictable field situations.

Bryan O'Hara : Bryan O'Hara, Has grown vegetables at Tobacco Road Farm in Lebanon, CT for 25 years.


No-Till Tomatoes in the Intensive Small Farm (Intermediate)

In this session we'll discuss proven methods for growing healthy and delicious tomatoes without tillage.  We'll dive deep into selection, care, and harvesting of tomatoes, and touch on methods for getting a continuous harvest July through October.

Joy Gary: Former manager of ReVision Urban Farm; works in small farms and community development


The Hows and Whys of Fungal Friendly Farming (Introductory)

Soil biology—especially fungi—play a critical role in plant health. This workshop will center on the importance of fungi in the farm ecosystem and will describe ways of helping fungi thrive while producing healthy crops and maintaining farm viability.

Jack Kittredge: Jack has been a certified organic farmer for 30+ years and is editor of the NOFA journal The Natural Farmer


The Climate Battery Greenhouse: Planning, Installation & Resourcing (Advanced)

The Climate Battery is a low-input heat transfer system for greenhouse temperature control. This relatively simple technology reduces fuel inputs and increases plant health by providing a more moderate temperature than venting alone. In this workshop, we will discuss in detail the planning and building of a greenhouse that incorporates the climate battery system. 

Jim Schultz:  Co-owns Red Shirt Farm in Lanesboro, MA.


Analyzing your Logan Lab Soil Test Report (Introductory, Intermediate)

This workshop will help you understand how to read your soil test report from Logan Labs. We will discuss Total Exchange Capacity, Organic Matter, Mineral and Trace Element Requirements for growing vegetables based upon the Albrecht method of soil balancing.

Laura Davis: Laura operates Long Life Farm in Hopkinton, MA assists growers with their soil amendment needs.


Reducing Tillage at Freedom Food Farm (Intermediate, Advanced)
At Freedom Food Farm we have been working to reduce our soil disturbance on our 10-acre scale, and have made some strategic changes to our crop residue and bed preparation practices. In this workshop we will go into detail on our mechanical practices as well as the practices we are trialing (solarization, no-till) in our hoophouses and high-rotation areas.
Chuck Currie: Runs Freedom Food Farm, a 90-acre four-season certified organic farm producing meat, grain, produce & eggs in Raynham, MA.

Small-scale Propagation of Native Plants from Seed (Introductory)

Learn the basics as well as get introduced to some of the complexities of growing native plants from seed. For the home-owner or small farmer looking for inexpensive and gratifying ways to add native plants to their landscape.

Adam Kohl: Owner of Kohl Gardens; ecological design, native plant nursery, & fine gardening


Natural Approaches to Treating Honeybees (All Levels)

Chemical approaches to viruses and varro mite problems of the honeybee have long term negative effects on the bees and environment. In this session we will discuss natural approaches to treating threats to our honeybee population. Major discussion of the positive effects of using natural fungus and mushrooms for treating these problems.

Mel Gadd: Mass Audubon's Drumlin Farm Beekeeper.


Integrating Nitrogen Fixing Plants in an Edible Forest Setting (Introductory, Intermediate)

Presenter will describe the characteristics and value of over 25 nitrogen-fixing plants integrated in the certified organic "Enchanted Edible Forest" garden at Cross Island Farms. The growth habit, preferred habitat, food value, other uses, and landscape appeal of each plant will be described. Plants from each of the seven permaculture layers will be featured..

Dani Baker: Dani Baker is an organic farmer who began planting her "Enchanted Edible Forest Garden" in 2013.


Making New Perennial Crops Profitable (Part 2) (Advanced)

New perennial crops have the potential to support the viability of Northeast farms, but require market development and fiscal planning. We will share business strategies and enterprise budgets for emerging perennial crops (nuts, fruits, vegetables, medicinals, and industrial crops). Participants will gain tools and resources to make informed decisions toward perennializing their farms.

Connor Stedman: M.S., is an ecological designer, farm planner, and educator on climate change mitigation.



Season-Extended/Intensively-Planted Spring/Early Summer Gardens (Introductory, Intermediate)

High productivity depends on getting an early start and choosing crops compatible with seasonal weather patterns.  Seedling care, intensive planting, permanent growing beds, fertility inputs and crop varieties also play a key role.  In 2016, our school garden yielded 8637 pounds of produce — without a "greenhouse" — on a 30 x 130 ft plot.

Steve Walach: Steve Walach has been teaching middle school organic gardening for 18 years.


Farmland Access:  Investing for the Food and Farming Revolution (All Levels)

Impact investments in regenerative organic farming deliver healthy foods, soils, and the reversal of climate change. We describe the model used at Iroquois Valley Farms to provide farmland tenure and financing for family farmers who are joining the food and farming revolution by rebuilding soils, providing clean healthy food, and sequestering carbon to cool the planet.

Sally Dodge: Northeast Community Development Manager and Board Member for Iroquois Valley Farmland REIT.

Dale Guldbrandsen: Northeast Community Development Manager at Iroquois Valley Farmland REIT.


Edge Silvopasturing - Start to Use Your Woods for Your Animals (Introductory)

Most farms have woods along the edges of pastures. Silvopasturing is an agroforestry practice that combines tree farming and animal grazing in a managed way to benefit both. Joan will cover the easiest way to start a Silvopasture practice on your farm – using woodland edges and discuss planning, animal participation, fencing and management for success.

Joan Walker: Farmer/owner & speaker on Animal Welfare, Silvopasturing & other pasture based agricultural practices in New England.


Soil, Food and Health: Cultivating Communities (Intermediate)

Exploring how agriculture can can heal a community that has been injured by poverty and violence. SEED uses Atonement Memorial Gardens to bring healing to communities that have suffered due to racism, poverty and violence.

Scott Muhammad: Co-Director of SEED.

Erica Muhammad: Co-Director of SEED (Students for Economic and Educational Development)


Food Safety and Toxics Use Reduction(Intermediate, Advanced)

Can we improve food safety and FSMA compliance and use less toxic cleaning/sanitizing agents and methods? This interactive workshop will explore the challenges and potential benefits for small and medium-sized “processing facilities” (those that either manufacture/ process produce from farms or those who harvest their own produce and pack, hold and manufacture/process).

Joy Onasch: Business & Industry Program Manager, Toxics Use Reduction Institute.

Boce Zhang: Assistant Professor, Department of Biomedical & Nutritional Sciences, College of Health Sciences at UMass Lowell.


Histories of Health Foods: Learning from the Past (Introductory)

When did Americans first start thinking about food as medicine? When did government first get involved in regulating both food and medicine, and deciding which was which? What can today’s organic growers learn from the surprisingly long history of these debates? Join a historian of food and farming to explore the bumpy timeline of health foods in the US.

Cathy Stanton: Senior Lecturer, Anthropology Dept, Tufts University, public historian focusing on food and farm history in New England


The Battle for Real Organic (All Levels)

As the integrity of the National Organic Program erodes, many organic farmers and eaters are organizing themselves into the Real Organic Project. We will look at how to protect the treasures of the organic movement: farming based on healthy soil. We must make sure that the meaning of organic is not lost. We will explore how to keep our movement vital.

Dave Chapman: Dave Chapman is executive director of the Real Organic Project. He is an organic farmer from Vermont at Long Wind Farm.


On the Road to Seed Independence  (Intermediate)

Adapting crop varieties to New England begins with farmers. Bill and Hannah have been working to create new regionally-adapted varieties of farm crops through a model of farmer-based participatory plant breeding. We will cover the basics of on-farm variety trialing and its importance in developing seed production in New England.

Hannah Traggis: Senior horticulturalist and educator at Massachusetts Horticultural Society.

Bill Braun: Farmer and seed grower at Ivory Silo Farm in Westport, MA.


Tune In to the Secret Garden of Your Gut Microbiome (Introductory)

We need to care for our gut microbiome as we would any ecosystem, by encouraging the growth of the beneficial species and discouraging the growth of pathogenic or unhealthy species. In this interactive workshop we will go the latest science on the gut microbiome and ways to rebuild and enhance biodiversity for greater health.

Heather Wise: Author of A Gut Feeling, Heather Anne Wise, MPH is a certified holistic health coach and self-taught herbalist.


Medicine for the People: Learn To Make Herbal Tinctures & Salves (Introductory)

Herbal tinctures and salves are easy and inexpensive to make, and it's helpful to have tinctures on hand to fight whatever cold or flu comes your way. This session will cover how to make alcohol-based herbal tinctures using dried herbs. We will review important herbs to boost the immune system and fight colds and the flu. We will also learn to make herbal salves.

Diana Phillips: Diana Phillips is a holistic healer with a practice focused mainly on chronic illness and Lyme disease.


Nourishing Infusions--How and Why to get them into your Life (Introductory)
Stinging nettle, red clover and oats are examples of plants which, when infused into water for at least four hours, are a super source of easily assimilated vitamins and minerals. Learn to make nourishing infusions to support optimal health through all stages of life. You'll come away with ideas and inspiration for getting infusions into your daily routine, and a reason to use that stinging nettle taking over your compost pile!

Emmy Howard: Emmy Howard is a community herbalist, cook and gardener.

The Power of Poultry: The Basics and Beyond (Introductory)

Chickens and other poultry provide much more than eggs and meat. We will cover the basics of keeping poultry for eggs and meat, but will also discuss how adding poultry to your backyard, homestead or farm can build soil nutrients, convert food waste, control pest populations and clear land.

Kirby Lecy: Small farmer & chicken wrangler, 15+ years working on food access, farming advocacy, and rural challenges.

Kerry Koljian: Small farmer & masterful heirloom grower using no chems and sustainable practices.

Systems & Methods of Regenerative Farming for Carrots & Lettuce  (Intermediate)

Learn the essentials of bed prep in a no-till, permanent bed system for both direct seeded crops and transplants. Dive deeper into our comprehensive system for successive crop production of carrots and lettuce to learn how to maximize yields while growing nutrient-dense and beautiful food.

Jen Salinetti: Co-owns a regenerative, no-till, bio-intensive vegetable farm, CSA and education center in the Berkshires.


Crop Health Improvement Through Foliar Spray Application: Materials & Practices (Advanced)

Foliar application can be very beneficial to the overall health of crops, and therefore yields and profit. We will cover the basics of various materials, preparations, and application of appropriate materials for specific crop situations. Herbal extracts, biodynamic preparations, and mineral materials all blended with thought and intention.

Bryan O'Hara : Bryan O'Hara, Has grown vegetables at Tobacco Road Farm in Lebanon, CT for 25 years.


Guerrilla Propagation Tactics for the Backyard Farm (All Levels)

Growers often feel compelled to copy conventional wisdom regarding planting dates, seeding protocols, and transplanting routines. But what happens when you the break these “rules”? Dan will describe his opportunistic propagation and season extension methods for growing year-round food on marginal space, in low tunnels and cold houses, using little machinery, capital or fossil fuel.

Daniel Botkin:  Owner/operator of Laughing Dog Farm, a permaculture-inspired, backyard farm and teaching space in Gill, MA.


Tuning Up Nature with Trace Minerals - Advanced Workshop (Intermediate, Advanced)

Achieving top yields with vegetables goes beyond the "big six" (N-P-K & Ca, MG, S).  In this workshop we'll highlight the role of Boron, Copper, Iron, Manganese, Molybdenum, & Zinc in high yielding vegetable systems.  We'll discuss deficiency ID, using dry amendments to correct imbalance, and addressing in season needs with nutrient drenches and foliar sprays. Participants are encouraged to bring along soil tests and or photos of previous nutrient stresses in their fields.

Derek Christianson: Owner-operator of Brix Bounty Farm in Dartmouth MA; Derek grows 7 acres of non-irrigated crops on sandy loam soil.

Biochar: A Centuries-old Modern Day Miracle (Intermediate)

Participants will learn about the ancient Amazonian way of using biochar to make the most fertile soil in the world – Terra Preta - by using man-made biochar, and why the ancient knowledge was lost. They will learn how to use biochar to grow healthy plants, while fighting climate change, drought and the need for excess fertilizers.

Deborah Cook: Former manager of Greenscapes - a statewide program sponsored by watershed groups.


Fertilizer from Urine: Clean Water and Sustainable Farms (Introductory)

The Rich Earth Institute turns human urine into a concentrated, soluble, and sustainable plant fertilizer. With funding from the National Science Foundation (NSF) and private donations, Rich Earth operates a first-in-the-nation pilot program that collects, transports, treats, and fertilizes with human urine--in order to develop the tools and technologies to make urine recycling an option for everyone.

Abraham Noe-Hays: Abe is the Research Director and has been working with dry sanitation systems since 1990.


Worms and Worm Composting: A Conversation (All Levels)

Learn about the care and feeding of worms. We will discuss worm ecology, worm bins and bin management, harvesting worm castings, and worm bin troubleshooting.

Ben Goldberg: Ben has been vermicomposting and making worm bins since 1995. His workshops are informative, conversational, and fun.


Garden Like A Farmer (Intermediate)

Want to ramp up your garden's yields this season while also using your time in the garden more efficiently? This workshop will apply many of the hard-won lessons of market farming to the garden environment. We'll take about crop plans, varietal choices, garden design, appropriate tools, and more.

Dan Bensonoff: UMass Faculty & Coordinator of the UMass Permaculture Initiative


Ecological Pollininator Conservation (Introductory)

Participants will learn about the causes and consequences of global pollinator decline. Information will be provided to help participants create and monitor pollinator habitat in their own backyard-- and participate in grassroots, citizen-scientist-based pollinator research.

Robert Gegear: Professor of biology and biotechnology at Worcester Polytechnic Institute. Founder of the Beecology Project.


Plant Communities for the Home Landscape(Intermediate)

Grow fruit/nut/shade gardens with native plants that love to grow together. We share our favorite plant communities for growing food, tea, medicine, and craft materials while improving ecology! Based on our years as ecological designers, we explain how we set up our guilds to mimic successional forest ecology and highlight the roles of the plants within each guild.

Evelyn Lane: Designer for Broadfork Permaculture.

Lisa Krause: Designer for Roots and Sky Ecological Design.


Chestnut Farming in New England (Intermediate)

Chestnuts should be part of our regional food system. Thousands more acres are needed to fulfill current demand. This workshop will review growing and processing chinese chestnuts and hybrids in diversified agroforesty system and review conditions, varieties, and current trends. We discuss our own recently-planted chestnut farm as a case study.

Jono Neiger: A dedicated teacher and practitioner of agroforestry, ecosystem restoration, and permaculture.

Russell Wallak: Ecological designer and beginning chestnut farmer based in Amherst, MA.


Using NRCS Practices to Design and Fund Agroforestry Systems (All Levels)

NRCS has been developing  guidelines, field practice reccomendations, and instituting funding opportunities for agroforestry projects. This session will focus on what regenerative farming scenerios that NRCS will fund in different Northeast States. We will also discuss using NRCS guidelines as a design tool for planning fundable agrogorestry systems.

Sven Pihl: Sven is a Regenerative Land Planner operating CT Edible Ecosystems, LLC.



Integrated Farming with Alpacas, Llamas, and Donkeys (Intermediate)

Integrated farming of alpacas, llamas, and donkeys including species behavior, housing, pasture sharing and rotation, herd health, and manure and pasture management. Attendees will come away with tools to manage these three species effectively on the same farm or individually.

Stephen Purdy: President Nunoa Project Peru, Director North American Camelid Studies Program


Fairness and Economic Viability – Can We Have Both?  (Introductory, Intermediate)

How we can make our farms centers of fair, just relationships and viable, sustainable operations?  How can farms demand prices that fully cover production costs? What kind of mutual support & respect between farmer and workers can we create? What public policies can we promote as part of the sustainable ag. movement? Can our customers be advocates? What can the NOFA’s do?

Elizabeth Henderson: Elizabeth Henderson started one of first CSAs in US, serves on Boards of NOFA-NY and the Agricultural Justice Project.

Louis Battalen: Louis homesteads in western MA, on NOFA's Domestic Fair Trade Committee, NE Regional Organizer for AJP.


Get some local organic action: Reduce pesticides near you! (All Levels)

In a time of political gridlock, how do we reclaim control in our communities? Connect with organic advocates in your town to pass local pesticide ordinances, protect pollinators, our soil, water and health. NOFA/Mass and the Toxics Action Center offer resources, guidance and convenings of local leaders to enact local solutions and build power for statewide and regional campaigns.

Marty Dagoberto: NOFA/Mass Policy Director.
Mary Jones: Toxics Action Center Community Organizer for Western MA & CT


Uprooting Racism in the Food System @ Soul Fire Farm (Intermediate)

The DNA of the U.S. food system is built upon racism, injustice, and exploitation of the Earth and her peoples. In this heart-centered and action-oriented workshop, we explore strategies used at Soul Fire Farm and other frontlines formations to dismantle inequity and restore ancestral farming and food systems. Another world is not only possible - it’s on the way.

Larisa Jacobson: Larisa, Farm Manager and Co-ED at Soul Fire Farm, has over two decades experience as a grower and community organizer.


Growing Culinary Herbs for Maximum Harvest (All Levels)

Learn to grow and work with culinary herbs - many annuals, some perennials - for maximum season long harvest.  We’ll discuss good growing techniques, pruning, harvesting, preserving - and then using herbs in creative ways.  Handout will include practical information, references, and lots of recipes.

Amy LeBlanc: Maine organic farmer, world traveler, and enthusiastic cook. Owner of Whitehill Farm.


The Power and Opportunities of Allying with Medicinal Mushrooms (Introductory)

We will explore recent research into the properties of medicinal mushrooms and discuss several ways to simply prepare mushrooms to incorporate into daily life. We will discuss what to look for in a medicinal mushroom product and how to use it.

Willie Crosby: Owner of Fungi Ally a mushroom cultivation and education company. Willie has been learning from fungi for 7 years.


Making Bone Broth and Tallow for Health and Taste (Introductory)

Bone Broth is a mineral rich infusion seen in the kitchen of almost every 5-star restaurant,  but it is also a powerful health tonic that you can easily add to your family’s diet. Broth is a traditional food that your grandmother likely made often and is used often in gut & autoimmune diseases. Participants will learn recipes and tips to maximize flavor and health.

Joan Walker: Farmer/owner & speaker on Animal Welfare, Silvopasturing & other pasture based agricultural practices in New England.


The Natural Treatment of Lyme Disease (All Levels)

Lyme disease is inundating the Northeast, infecting great numbers, and creating much distress and anxiety for those inflicted, and for their friends and families. Herbalist Timothy Scott will be sharing his experiences with this disease from a perspective as a health care provider, as one who was inflicted, as a researcher, and as an avid outdoorsman.

Timothy Scott: Timothy Scott is an herbalist, gardener, and author of INVASIVE PLANT MEDICINE.

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