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Vermont's Permaculture Institute

Tag Archives: northeast permaculture

Nuts for the Northeast- NOFA VT Winter Conference, Sat. Feb. 15

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Hardy Organic Nuts for Farms and Yards

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Keith Morris at
NOFA VT 32nd Annual Winter Conference
3:45 – 5:00 pm
Silver Maple Ball Room, Davis Center UVM
     Since the dawn of time, nuts have been some of the most important food plants for human beings.  Nut trees and shrubs offer some of the most nutrient dense foods, provide habitat, show the potential for a ‘carbon-negative’ and flood resilient agriculture, and are economically valuable for a variety of products in addition to nuts themselves.
Join with grower and international farm designer Keith Morris to explore the fascinating ecology and mythology of a few nut trees particularly suited to growing on farms and in neighborhoods throughout in the northeast.  We’ll focus of hardy proven nuts, and introduce some of the breeding, trailing, and hybridizing happening at Willow Crossing Farm in Johnson, VT to select for disease resistance, organic production, high quality timber, oils, medicinal properties, and to migrate some important nuts typically grown in warmer regions.  Participants will leave with a deeper understanding and appreciation of some trees commonly found in towns and hillsides, and be introduced to promising less common nuts.
Keith Morris is the founder of Willow Crossing Farm and is Professor of Permaculture Design at the University of Vermont.  As a grower, builder, and designer, he has created ecologically regenerative and economically viable food systems in New Zealand, Colorado, Chile, Argentina, Mexico, Quebec, California, New Mexico, Arizona, Nigeria, Ghana, Denmark, and the Netherlands- working regularly throughout New England and in New York City.  He has spent over 20 years developing permaculture with farms, towns, schools, indigenous peoples, squats, activists, and in solidarity with exploited populations.
Willow Crossing Farm is Vermont’s longest established permaculture research and education facility, and a debt-free ‘financial permaculture’ working family farm.   We host one of the most diverse collections of tree crops in the northeast, offer farm-based dining and educational opportunities to the local communities, and host annual events that attract people from across the country and a surprising variety of international students. We grow a variety of fruits, nuts, berries, and vines in an organic nursery; experiment with new crops, techniques, and regenerative farm infrastructure; manage production to create wildlife refuge and pollinator sanctuary; and have been focused on developing ‘productive buffers’ to reforest floodplain and riverside banks with marketable production.
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Also- subscribe to our blog (just enter your email above to the right) to receive announcements about Farm Tours and to view our fruit, nut, and medicinal plant collections, view the listing for the Spring Nursery Sale, and other related workshops and conferences.

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Stay tuned for details about our February Pruning Workshop, March Grafting Workshop, Farm Dinners, and other upcoming events.

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Our 2014 Summer Permaculture Design Certification (July 20 – August 1) is filling fast- please be in touch if you would like to reserve your space!

This is Vermont’s oldest independent Permaculture Design Certification Course, with the most highly regarded PDC and teaching team in the Northeast.  Prospect Rock Permaculture has largest body of PDC alumni/ graduates in the North America!  We hope you can join us.

Its almost full!

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With the Happiest Wishes for your New Year, and Warm Winter Blessings, 

The Prospect Rock Permaculture Family and Crew

 

Nov. 15- Keynote Presentation in NH and Comments for FSMA!

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Farms for the Future

Ecological Regeneration and Economic Viability for Northeastern Farm Legacy

FRIDAY, November 15, 2013

     6:00 PM    —    Newport, NH

     As the 21 century gets underway, it appears ever more likely that we will face continued challenges and change at an unprecedented rate- likely even greater than experienced during the 20th century.  As we face uncertainty in regards to climate, energy, government, and the global economy- we can fear change, scramble to react, or adapt appropriately and with intention.

Join with professional farm designer Keith Morris to explore how the study of ecology, history, and ecological design can help us act on the tremendous opportunities we have at present to make our farms more resilient, ecologically regenerative, and economically viable with an eye towards healthy communities and a lasting legacy into the future.

We’ll look to a few inspiring examples from here in the northeast and beyond of farms using permaculture to create health and abundance by combining tradition with new crops and techniques- focusing on the intersection of social and ecological health, and caring for future generations.

On Friday, November 15 at 6 pm, you are invited to join us for the 67th Annual Awards Dinner for the Sullivan County Conservation District.  There will be a farm-sourced meal, recognition for stand-out farms and educators, and an opportunity to  weave connections between area veteran farmers, young and new growers/ homesteaders, extension agents, and state and local representatives looking to engage in making a viable agricultural future for the region.

$15 Includes Dinner and Award Ceremony, to make a reservation, please contact Lionel Chute, ASAP

lchute@sullivancountynh.gov

6:00 PM  in the Sugar River Bank Community Room

     10 N. Main St.  in Newport, NH

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HAVE YOU HEARD ABOUT FSMA (the Food Safety Modernization & Safety Act)!?

Comments are due by NOV. 15!

The rules, as currently proposed, have the potential to be very damaging to many farms – especially those who are focused on veggies and fruits, or concerned about Food Sovereignty.

RURAL VERMONT, NOFA VT, UVM EXTENSION,  New England Farmers’ Union, and the VT Agency of Agriculture have pulled together some of the best analysis of what you need to know and what you CAN DO to add your voice to the protest over how these proposed rules could devastate small scale agriculture in the northeast.

PLEASE CLICK HERE FOR AN AWESOME COLLECTION OF INFORMATION ON HOW TO LEARN MORE AND SUBMIT EFFECTIVE, INFORMED COMMENTS!

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We’ll also be presenting with MARK SHEPARD (whose farm is pictured in the flyer above) during this Winter’s NOFA MASS Conference on January 11.

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AND with NOFA VT on February 15

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LASTLY- Our internationally recognized, farm-based PERMACULTURE DESIGN CERTIFICATION COURSE will be held this summer July 20 – August 1, and is already beginning to fill!  Please reserve your space now, and feel free to share course information with potentially interested friends and networks.

Happy Harvest-

Keith and Family

Tonight – Free Screening of ‘The Growing Edge’ at Willow Crossing Farm

Hi Friends!

As most of you know, we’re just beginning a two-week residential intensive ‘Earth Activist Training’ Permaculture Design Certification course with international permaculture designer and best-selling author Starhawk.

We’re happy to announce that a number of evening presentations will be free and open to the public.

While we normally only send our a few emails/ blog posts a year in this format, I’ll be sending a few this week with more details for these opportunities.  If you’re not interested, please just delete, or let me know what types of announcements you’d like to receive.

Read below for a list of presentations, and feel free to share with potentially interested friends or networks.

THIS EVENING will be a introduction to permaculture design with Starhawk, Charles WIlliams, Rushelle Frazier, and Keith Morris and a screening of ‘The Growing Edge’.

All presentations (except the open UVM sessions) will be at 7:30 pm here at Willow Crossing Farm.

All-local, organic farm-sourced dinner will be served at 6 pm, and is $12-15 per person, all you can eat.

Dinner guests must RSVP in advance.

Thanks,

Keith and Family


Permaculture: The Growing Edge is an antidote to environmental despair, a hopeful and practical look at a path to a viable, flourishing future. The film introduces us to inspiring examples of projects, and includes a visit to David Holmgren’s own homestead, tracking deer with naturalist Jon Young, sheet mulching an inner-city garden with Hunters Point Family, transforming an intersection into a gathering place with City Repair and joining mycologist Paul Stamets as he cleans up an oil spill with mushrooms. We interview some of the key figures in the Permaculture movement, including David Holmgren, Penny Livingston-Stark, James Stark, Paul Stamets, Mark Lakeman, Dr. Elaine Ingham, Maddy Harland, and others. 

Permaculture is a sustainable system of earth care that offers solutions to many of our grave environmental problems and a hopeful, proactive vision of change. The Permaculture movement, started by Australians Bill Mollison and David Holmgren in the nineteen seventies, is now a worldwide network of skilled ecological designers, teachers, food growers, natural builders, environmental activists and visionaries. “Permaculture is the key to a post-carbon future,” says Maddy Harlan, editor of Permaculture Magazine.

Open Sessions at the EAT PDC!– FREE and open to the public- at Willow Crossing Farm in Johnson, VT.Donations to the Gender and Diversity Permaculture Leadership Scholarship Fund, which is generously supporting a number of our students and our apprentice teacher, are gratefully accepted.

All presentations begin at 7:30 pm.

All local organic Farm-sourced dinner is served at 6 pm, $12-15, must RSVP in advance for dinner!

Sunday, Sept. 8
Introduction to Permaculture:
Starhawk, Charles Williams and Keith Morris give an introduction to permaculture and show the documentary Permaculture: The Growing Edge made by Starhawk and Donna Read.

Tuesday, Sept. 10
Permaculture Activism with Rushelle Frazier: Inner city permaculture, work with veterans, permaculture for mobilizations and encampments

Wednesday Sept. 11
Permaculture for diverse climates and environments
Tropical/global permaculture
Starhawk—Drylands permaculture and the International Permaculture Convergence in Jordan

Sunday Sept. 15
Urban permaculture slideshow
Lisa DePiano on Pedal Pushers and an urban CSA
Keith on permaculture for renters

Monday Sept. 16
Natural building
Charles Williams on passive solar and design for efficiency
Natural building slideshow

Monday Sept. 16 AT UVM in BURLINGTON
Starhawk 5:10- 8:10 pm

Wednesday Sept. 17
Full Moon Ritual

Thursday, Sept. 18 at UVM in BURLINGTON
SCOTT KELLOGG 5:10- 8:10 pm

Thanks- feel free to share.

Permaculture for the Northcountry: Adirondacks

Open Consultation, Participatory Design Charrettes, and Lecture Series

Turtle Hill Community and St. Lawrence University, Canton, NY

August 9 – 11

Tuesday August 9

Turtle Hill

9:00-12:00   2-Part Open Lecture: 

Permaculture is an evolving and expanding design system used to create agriculturally productive human habitat at scales varying from balconies to broader regions.  Spend the morning with professional ecological designer Keith Morris exploring this design science used by individuals and communities to create ethical, socially just, and ecologically regenerative perennial support systems during an ‘Open Consultation’ for the Turtle Hill and St. Lawrence University Communities.

The History of Permaculture and ‘Participatory Ecology’

As permaculture rapidly expands around the world, the field is constantly evolving and taking new directions.  We’ll discuss the history of permaculture and ecological design as we look to the sciences of ecology, anthropology, and evolution for inspiration and guidance to establish our homes, gardens, and communities as ‘human ecosystems’ that are less fuel reliant, beautiful, productive, ecologically regenerative, and more wholly nourishing.  

What is the potential for human beings as ‘Keystone Species’?  How have we acted as such in the past?  We’ll explore the ways human beings have ‘co-created’ ecological communities in the past, at present, and our potential to do so more insightfully in the future, with a particular eye to the unique challenges and opportunities of the Adirondacks and Northcountry region.

Designing an Ecological Energy Descent Culture

As we acknowledge the convergent crises of the 21st century, we can be overwhelmed with visions of apocalypse- or embrace some of the greatest opportunities to restructure society with ecological and ethical sanity, localized resilience, and abundance.  We explore the relationships between the built environment, food security, energy, water, and natural communities, in order to retrofit this infrastructure to better adapt to a changing and potentially challenging future.  By examining today’s multifaceted problems from a systems perspective, we focus on the intersection of social and ecological health, and find the best opportunities for leverage to affect change in our personal lives and communities.  

Introduction to Turtle Hill Community and Site 

Lunch

Turtle Hill Orientation and Site Walk

Observation of Nature/Natural Patterns

SLU

4:30 Introduction to SLU Community and Site

5:00 Dinner

7:00-8:00 Public Lecture: 

Breeding with Climate Change: New Plants for the North:

While no one’s celebrating ‘Global Weirding’, a changing climate does offer some new opportunities for growers in the cold northcountry.  As important as political and personal efforts are to stem the causes of climate change, it may be even more important that we anticipate and prepare for different future scenarios.  We will look at the ‘movement’ of ecosystems in nature, and explore ways we can harness this fact to our benefit, and mimic natural adaptation by selecting for delayed flowering and earlier ripening with promising marginal species and varieties.  In particular, we’ll look at some ‘new’ fruits, nuts, vines, and grains presently being bred for ‘northward migration’, and will discuss more general strategies for resilient food systems amidst the many uncertainties of the future.

Wednesday August 10

Turtle Hill

9:00-12:00 2-Part Open Lecture: 

Season Extention/ Greenhouse Integration: (Winter Vegetables- even for the far north!)

Greenhouses are an essential component of diversified and season-extended growing in the northcountry, and also a great addition to a low energy and resilient household.  Learn how greenhouses can be integrated with homes, animal shelters, barns, and other structures to reduce energy needs, supplement heating and fresh food in the winter, and even- if well designed- help cool buildings in summer months.  We’ll introduce the basics of passive solar design, thermal mass, ventilation, subterranean heat storage, orientation, and glazing options, as well as meet some of the unique plants greenhouses allow us to grow.  We’ll also look at ‘Quick Hoops’, ‘Rolling Greenhouses’, and other strategies for unheated year round vegetable production, see some photos, (and share some secrets) from some of Vermont’s most established winter vegetable production farms.  This spring, presenter Keith Morris received a grant to build Vermont’s first winter-production greenhouse on wheels at Willow Crossing Farm.  

Designing your Design Process

Here we’ll get into the ‘brass tacks’ of ecological design.  We’ll discuss goals articulation, base mapping, analysis and assessment (ie. ‘reading the landscape’),  data overlay through the ‘Scale of Permanence’, and other planning and design strategies.  This is in preparation for an afternoon of map-making, graphical analysis, and walking the land with an eye towards refining and communicating our visoins of more resilient food production, processing and storage; on-site waste management and cycling; decentralized energy production; as well as a beautiful and functional landscape that brings neighbors together in abundance and enhances the broader social and ecological communities that provide our context.

Lunch

Participatory Design Workshop: Analysis and Assessment/Group map-making, etc.

Dinner 

Group Design Session

Thursday August 11 

Turtle Hill

Open Lecture: Invisible Structures – Economic, Decision-Making, etc. 

Design Concepts

Phase Planning

Lunch

SLU

2:00 Meeting with SLU grounds staff and SLU design wrap-up

Bio:

Keith Morris has been applying his lifelong love of nature and culture and experience as an activist to permaculture and ecological design since 1996. He has worked professionally as a designer, builder, and grower of ecologically regenerative, socially just, and culturally appropriate whole-systems in cities and countrysides around the world since 2000.  He is the founder of Prospect Rock Permaculture (www.prospectrock.org), Willow Crossing Farm, co-founder of the Permaculture Institute of the NorthEast (P.I.N.E.), and teaches ecological design at the University of Vermont, the Yestermorrow Design Build School, Sterling College, Paul Smiths College, Burlington Permaculture, and with other community organizations.  While his expertise is ecological regeneration, high-performance food production, and shelter systems for cold temperate/ arctic conditions, he works regularly in New York City and has designed and implemented systems in New Zealand, Colorado, Chile, Argentina, California, New Mexico, Arizona, Nigeria, Ghana, Denmark, and the Netherlands.

Welcome to Prospect Rock Permaculture

Welcome!       -Please be patient as our website is under construction.  

We apologize for any dead links or blank pages- feel free to enjoy what is up, and check back soon as we continue to revise and add content.

Be in touch via comment or email if there’s anything in particular you’re looking for and can’t find online.                    

We welcome your feedback and suggestions as we reformat our online presence.

Stay tuned for more photos, video, and designs coming up soon!

Sample Photo Banner

Some sample photos and Designs

 

Prospect Rock Permaculture is a growing edible forest garden, ecological homestead, and education center in Johnson along the Lamoille River. We combine reforestation, wildlife refuge, and ecological restoration with food production and community building, while educating about and experimenting with sustainable techniques and ways of building. We grow seed with High Mowing Organic Seeds, keep bees and wild craft medicinal plants for Honey Gardens Apiaries, grow fruits, nuts, and berries with Elmore Roots Nursery, and also work researching and educating about biodiesel. Be in touch for updates about classes, workshops, tours, and internship or apprentice opportunities.

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