Designing a Sustainable Future Together

Classes and Workshops

I have a variety of workshops and classes that I can teach at your location.  My calendar does fill up quickly, so please email me to check on availability.  The course fees include my time, all course materials and preparation as well as any time needed to answer participants questions before and after the event.  The course fees listed do not include mileage (locations within 30 miles of Lawrence, KS do not require mileage), room reservation fees or advertising.  

Food Preservation

This workshop can either be 4 or 6 hours long.  The 4 hour version covers water bath and pressure canning by having students make a pickle, a jelly and pressure can a low acid vegetable.  I begin by reviewing the types of pressure and water bath canners, what to look for when buying used equipment, what tools are necessary vs. nice and correct techniques for processing food safely. 

This is a hands on workshop, so the number of attendees is limited to 14 so that every one has a chance to participate in all parts of the canning process.  We will prepare each item for canning, sterilize jars and lids, learn how to measure headspace and look up the specific time and temperature/pressure requirements for each food to be preserved.  Everyone will get to load jars into the canners and remove them.  Each participant will go home with at least 1 jar of food preserved during the workshop. 

This workshop does require a commercial kitchen large enough to accommodate the participants, but I will provide all the other equipment and supplies. 

The cost for the 4 hour workshop is $250.

The 6 hour version of this course adds natural fermentation (lacto-fermentation using brine) and dehydration to the topics list and incorporates a meal made from preserved foods.  The cost for the 6 hour workshop is $350.

Permaculture Design Certificate Course

I teach the full PDC curriculum through the University of Kansas and through the Kansas Permaculture Institute.  Due to the time required, I only teach through these 2 venues.  Please see to register for our upcoming PDC's!

Gardening 101

This 2 hour class covers everything you need to know to start a garden. We begin with how to pick a location for your garden, then proceed through setting goals and choosing vegetables.  Participants will learn about plant spacing, seed starting, when to plant each vegetable and how to prepare the soil.  I will discuss different garden layouts from tilling a flat area to building raised garden beds with pros and cons for each.  There will be time in class for participants to work on their own garden plans.  The course fee is $100, maximum class size of 30.

Advanced Gardening

This class covers how to maximize your garden's productivity by utilizing shady/marginal spaces, doing intensive succession planting, incorporating natural soil amendments and applying permaculture techniques to create long term fertility.  This class is a 1 hour lecture/ Q&A.  Course fee is $75, maximum class size of 50.

Maximizing Water

This 3 hour class will focus on how to maximize water utilization on your property from urban to acreage.  We will discuss strategies for water catchment including swales, ponds and terraces.  We will also discuss rain barrel and cistern systems.  The focus will be on making the most of the water available to you through strategically placed earthworks. Course fee is $200, maximum class size of 50.

Designing Perennial Food Systems (Food Forests)

Shifting our diets to a more perennial food system has huge ecological benefits.  In addition, growing plants in productive guilds improves the yield of all plants in the guild.  If you want to learn how to design perennial food systems centered around focus trees (fruit or nut), this is the class for you!  I will cover the steps to designing an effective guild, how to diagram the guild and plan for the future growth of the plants in it and how to decide what plants best meet your needs.  This is a 3 hour class with some time allotted for students to design their own plantings.  The course fee is $200, maximum class size of 30.

Introduction to Permaculture Design

This 1 hour overview lecture will introduce key principals and strategies in permaculture design and how they are used to regenerate landscapes into productive ecosystems that meet human needs (the essence of permaculture).  This lecture is meant to be a high level look at the strategies and concepts.  To learn how to apply them with concrete techniques, please see either the full PDC curriculum or some of the specific topic workshops in this list.  Course fee is $100 and the maximum class size is 50.

Emergency Preparedness / Stocking the Pantry

If you've ever wondered what you should have on hand in case of an extended emergency, this 4 hour class is for you!  I cover what foods to keep on hand that do not require refrigeration, what supplies are vital vs. nice to have and how to prepare food safely when the infrastructure breaks down (specifically grid power and water).  This class also includes how to pack a "bug out bag" to take with you in case of emergency evacuation. We will do hands on activities to purify water, sprout grains and participants will get to make their own food storage plan based on their own goals.  The 4 hour version of the class includes a meal made from 100% storage foods.  If not, the class can be taught in 3 hours.  Course fee for the 4 hour version is $250.  The 3 hour version is $200.  Both classes are limited to 20 people due to the hands on nature of the activities.