Permaculture Design Certification Course

72-Hour Permaculture Design Certification Course with Wayne Weiseman
August 31-September 8, 2019 at
Heartwood Farm in Louisa, VA.

About this event

A Permaculture Design Certificate (PDC) course offers a comprehensive introduction to Permaculture principles, applications & design practices and meets the international standard as the 72+ hour foundational course for Permaculture practitioners and teachers.

You will have many opportunities to put theory into practice by doing hands-on, creative activities at Heartwood Farm, where Permaculture principles are actively practiced and promoted. We will do an in-depth site analysis, and students will create designs of different areas on the farm. Special guests will share their expertise as well.

While learning about our habitat and our own relationship with the environment, we will look at how humans have been relating to Earth throughout history and into today’s modern urban times. The three main historical viewpoints we will study are:

Hunter/Gatherer

Training in hunter-gatherer living and nature skills sharpens our ability to see life as it is. We develop hand and eye coordination, and become one with an environment where we must observe and create what we need in an immediate and balanced way.

Agricultural Settlement

Exposure to various methods of sustainable agriculture, i.e. Permaculture, Biodynamic Agriculture, Bio-intensive gardening, the eco-agriculture movement, organic systems, the natural way of farming of Masanobu Fukuoka and indigenous systems of agriculture. You also learn about renewable energy systems (wind, water, solar), ecological building practices (straw bale, cob, cordwood, etc.) and everything from tool making to animal husbandry.

Urban/Suburban

Studying the urban and suburban landscape and learning ways to live sustainably in the midst of concrete and close-quarters. Discover how permaculture design can help those living in urban and suburban areas meet their needs for nutrition, energy and community while maintaining meaningful work and upholding sustainable policies in towns and cities.

Where is this?

This 8-day intensive course will be held at Heartwood Farm in Louisa, VA. Class will take place from 8:00 am to about 6:00 pm each day, with breaks for lunch, and two additional evening activities with served dinner. A light breakfast fare and lunch will be provided each day.

Heartwood is a sustainable diversified farm in Central Virginia using permaculture principles to raise pastured pork, ducks, chickens, rabbits, eggs, vegetables and herbs. It’s roughly 15 minutes to Gordonsville and 30 minutes to downtown Charlottesville, where restaurants, grocery stores, hotels, airbnbs, etc. are abundant. Camping will be available on the farm, however students must bring all of their own camping equipment.

Why take this class?

Because this course is a game changer. It brings into focus practical principles and ethics that many of us have forgotten or dismissed. It is like picking up a master key that unlocks many doors leading to abundance and health. Students have repeatedly stated they have found that by regenerating the earth and improving their relationship with it they have regenerated themselves in the process. You want this master key!

Topics covered

  • Permaculture ethics & principles
  • Concepts, themes, method of design
  • Climate & microclimates
  • Plants, gardening & farming systems
  • Primitive skills & foraging
  • Landform & water movement
  • Alternative energy & natural building
  • Seed saving, plant propagation, grafting
  • Soil fertility & soil management
  • Native medicinal plants identification, uses & preparation
  • …and many more!

Early bird tuition (until 5/31/19): $900. Regular tuition: $1,100. Standard processing fees apply. Includes breakfast and lunch each day, plus two dinners. Camping available on the farm, other sleeping accommodations (hotels, airbnbs, etc.) are the responsibility of the student. Students will receive the Permaculture Design Certificate on the final day of the course.

*Limited 1-Day Workshops Available for two of the course days. Workshop attendees will not receive a PDC certificate*

(9/4/19): Soil Fertility & Mushroom Cultivation – Full day workshop (8am-5pm). We’ll cover basic soil biology, organic methods to build soil fertility and how to build an at-home composting system. Also learn how to grow your own edible/medicinal mushrooms at home with fresh log inoculation techniques! Includes a chainsaw use & safety demonstration.Fee: $120.

(9/7/19): Fermentation; Herbal Medicine; Live Animal Process, Cooking Demonstration & Dinner – Half Day Workshop (1pm-8pm). Hands-on introduction to lacto-fermentation and folk herbal medicine traditions. Livestock process and cooking demonstration will be done by farm owner, Zac Culbertson. Learn the basics of how to process poultry, raised on Heartwood Farm. Includes a delicious cooking demonstration and a wonderful group dinner! Fee: $75.

About the Instructor

Wayne Weiseman is a permaculture teacher, designer, consultant and author. He was certified to teach permaculture by Bill Mollison, the founder of permaculture, in 1999. Wayne has taught hundreds of Permaculture Design Courses around the world. He has served as a consultant and lecturer to educators, school administrators, business leaders, and others internationally. For 15 years Wayne managed a land-based, self-reliant community project combining organic crop/food production, ecologically-built shelter, renewable energy and appropriate technologies.

Wayne is a co-author of an authoritative book on integrated forest gardening and plant guilds that was published in August, 2014.

For more information on the instructor, Wayne Weiseman, go to: http://www.permacultureproject.com/

Questions? Please email permacultureproject@gmail.com

All Ticket Sales Are Final and Non-Refundable

Call for entries: Virginia Master Naturalist Photo Contest

Were you taking your family on a bluebell walk and took a perfect photo of light filtering through the tree canopy? Were you documenting a citizen science project and snapped a great blue heron as it took off from the shoreline? We want your photos!

The  Virginia Master Naturalist program is sponsoring a statewide photo contest. Each chapter may submit one photo in one of five categories:

Virginia Native Wildlife (Category Code: Wildlife)

Virginia Native Plant and Fungi World (Category Code: Plant)

Virginia Native Landscapes (Category Code: Landscape)

Virginia Native Macro and Night Photography (Category Code: M&N)

Virginia Master Naturalists in Action (Category Code: VMN)

Simply upload your photos to Facebook, Instagram or Twitter with the hashtag #FMNphotos19.  Please include the category for which you are submitting the photo and your name in the photo identification.

Our Fairfax Master Naturalist (FMN) chapter will accept entries from our members in good standing until 11:59 pm on Friday, 5 July. Winners will be notified by Friday, 19 July. The photographers of the four winning entries must forward their entries to the statewide competition by 11:59 pm on Friday, 9 August. Participants agree that all images submitted may be used by the FMN program for our website, newsletter, social media and other promotional purposes. Photographers will receive a photo credit.  See the 2018 VMN winners here.

Photo Editing
Permitted modifications:

  • Cropping, resizing, and rotating photo
  • Red-eye removal
  • Corrective functions to improve the natural appearance of the image, such as white balance, brightness, contrast, levels, color balance, saturation, sharpening, noise reduction

     Modifications not permitted:

  • Adding, removing, or replacing elements
  • Artistic filters
  • Added borders or frames

Photo sizing: All photographs must be high resolution digital JPEGs and winning images will be sized for optimum viewing in a PowerPoint presentation.

See the complete rules here.

For questions, contact us at vmnfairfax@gmail.com with the subject line: FMN Photo Contest

 

Explore a working landscape at Manassas National Battlefield Park

You’re invited!

A coalition led by Master Naturalists from both the Merrimac Farm and Fairfax chapters, called Heritage Habitat, is crafting nature tours for the public at Manassas National Battlefield Park and Conway Robinson State Forest.  The theme is “Heritage Habitat – A Working Educational Landscape”.  The National Park Service, Virginia Department of Forestry, and the Virginia Cooperative Extension have been strongly active and supportive of expanding interpretation at those two sites.

After months of preparation, we launch on June 1, 9:00-11:00am with our first walking tour at Brawner Farm in Manassas National Battlefield Park.  All Master Naturalists are invited!  Come for an educational trial run of this program.  In addition to learning about how the landscape is managed, we’ll be looking for feedback on the program.

The battlefield maintains a historical pattern of field and forest through hay field leases and use of prescribed fire.  Conway Robinson State Forest, in Gainesville, is a working demonstration forest, with active management of species composition though thinning and harvest of trees.  Both sites are rich in biodiversity as well as history, and excellent places for introducing the general public to the challenges of managing land to keep it “natural.”  

The Heritage Habitat team is also looking for more volunteers to support or even lead several tours per year, to add to posts/pictures on Facebook, and to explore the sites in more depth.  Interested?  Contact Bryan Graham at bryan.graham@djj.virginia.gov or Heritage Habitat at HeritageHabitat@yahoo.com .   Our Facebook page is https://www.facebook.com/HeritageHabitat/ ; Twitter handle @HeritageHabitat

No registration is required, but please RSVP to one of the email addresses if you’re planning on attending.The location is the Brawner Farm interpretive center in the Manassas National Battlefield Park.  From Lee Highway (US-29 ) driving from Centreville, turn right (north) at the traffic light onto Pageland Lane.  After about 2000 feet, the entrance is on the right.

From homo sapiens to geo sapiens: The quest for the earthwise human

Thursday, June 6

6:30-9 p.m.

Yorktown High School, 5200 Yorktown Blvd, Patriot Hall, Arlington

Please join EcoAction Arlington for a special evening featuring Martin Ogle, the former chief naturalist for NOVA Parks. Ogle’s presentation will combine the concepts of the Gaia Theory, the idea that living organisms and inorganic components of Earth form a single living system, with new ideas about creating a green economy that works for people and the planet.

This timely and unique talk will challenge participants to envision new educational themes as well as careers and business concepts that are compatible with human nature and Nature as a whole. It will advocate for bringing these ideas to young people–especially high school students–to empower them to create a better world. Ogle believes that our response to social/environmental challenges should reflect new understandings of human society as a seamless continuum of a living planet.  He uses the phrase, “Geo sapiens,” to capture this new sense of ourselves as “Earth-wise.”

This presentation will expand our thinking about how human creativity itself, as an extension of Earth’s life, can inspire and enable us to apply that creativity directly at our most pressing challenges.

The event is free but registration would be appreciated.  You can RSVP here

Thanks to our event co-sponsors and exhibitors:

Earth Force , For A Strawless Sea, Leaders in Energy, Master Gardeners of Northern Virginia, and St. Stephen’s and St. Agnes School.

Virginia Master Naturalist Statewide Conference and Volunteer Training

The 2019 conference will be Friday, September 20-Sunday, September 22.  Pre-conference field trips and activities will take place during the day on Friday, and the main event will run Friday evening through Sunday mid-day.

In 2019, the VMN-Headwaters Chapter welcomes VMN volunteers from across Virginia to the Shenandoah Valley. The event will be based at the Massanetta Springs Camp & Conference Center, five miles from downtown Harrisonburg.  From there, it is a short trip to terrific field trip sites, including Shenandoah National Park, George Washington National Forest, several Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation Natural Area Preserves, the Edith J. Carrier Arboretum, and more.

Registration Dates and Types

Early Registration will open in mid-July and Regular Registration will open in mid-August, specific dates TBA.

Two registration types in 2019:

  • Full Conference – $185 during Early Registration, or $200 during Regular Registration
  • Saturday Training Only (price includes Saturday lunch) – $75 during Early Registration, or $85 during Regular Registration

Information on the agenda and lodging

Fairfax County farmers markets now open

Local farmers and artisans are excited to provide you with the freshest produce, meats, cheese, baked breads, honey, ice cream, sweets, and cut flowers the region has to offer. All of Fairfax County’s 10 farmers markets are open for the season.

The farmers markets offers the best quality produce around, with everything harvested hours before sale to ensure optimum taste and nutrition.

The markets are producer-only, meaning the farmers and producers must grow or make everything they sell at market. This gives customers the opportunity to meet farmers, and learn more about where their food comes from. There is no better way to support local farmers, businesses, and community than shopping locally.

Bring your family and friends, and join your neighbors at the farmers markets! Don’t forget to bring your reusable bag!

Here’s a printable schedule

The Evolution of the National Wildlife Refuge System: One Manager’s Perspective

Imagining “wild” spaces in and around a busy metropolitan area like Fairfax County might feel like an exercise in futility, but we are actually have several wildlife refuges within driving distance: Mason Neck and Patuxent Research Refuge, for example.

How did these areas become protected and what’s next for the National Wildlife Refuge System that cares for them?

On May 11, at the Northern Virginia Soil and Water Conservation District’s Green Breakfast in Fairfax, Patuxent Wildlife Refuge Manager Brad Knudsen discussed the evolution of the National Wildlife Refuge System. He told stories about the important wildlife resources the NWRS conserves, how the NWRS has grown in its 116 years, and how legislation and public involvement have impacted the direction of the system.

He closed with a glimpse at what the future holds, including decisions driven by science and a mission to take the refuges to the people. Luckily, he’s allowed us to post his slides so that folks who couldn’t come, can still get a sense of what he talked about, and work to preserve our natural national heritage.

 

Beetles of Virginia, with Dr. Art Evans, June 15

Clifton Institute
6712 Blantyre Road
Warrenton, Virginia 20187-7106

Saturday, June 15
7:30PM – 9:30PM

Join the Institute for a program about beetles presented by entomologist and author Dr. Art Evans. After his presentation, Dr. Evans will take everyone outside  to set up several black light sheets to attract nocturnal beetles and other insects. Dr. Evans is the author of Beetles of Eastern North America. He is an adjunct professor and teaches entomology and medical entomology at the University of Richmond, Randolph-Macon College, and Virginia Commonwealth University. $10 a person.

Learn more

Natural history and conservation of Virginia moths, with Dr. Steve Roble, June 29

Clifton Institute
6712 Blantyre Road
Warrenton, Virginia 20187-7106

Saturday, June 29
8:00PM – 10:30PM

Dr. Steve Roble will give a presentation on the natural history about moths and a summary of his agency’s efforts during the past 30 years to study the moths of Virginia. Then we will go outside and use ultraviolet lights to attract moths and other nocturnal insects and discuss some of our finds.

Dr. Steve Roble is the head Zoologist for the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation’s Division of Natural Heritage. He is the editor of Banisteria, the semiannual journal of the Virginia Natural History Society, and a research associate at the Virginia Museum of Natural History. $10 a person.

Learn more

Help with restoration planting at Clifton Institute, May 15-17

The lower dam at the Clifton Institute was scraped of most of its vegetation last year during a construction project. Before construction, the dam was covered in a diverse community of wildflowers and native grasses and it was a magnet for wildlife. They have received a Plant Grant from the Earth Sangha nursery that will provide $600 worth of free wetland plants so that they can restore the dam. They need help from the amazing community of generous volunteers to install the plants.

Clifton Institute will be planting at the following times:

Wednesday 15 May
9 AM-12:30 PM

Thursday 16 May
3-5:30 PM

Friday 17 May
2-5 PM

Unfortunately, they can’t schedule any weekend volunteer days during this busy time of year. But this project is simpler than last year’s riparian buffer planting and the should be able to get it done in three sessions.

Please let Bert Harris know via email if you’d like to help: bharris@cliftoninstitute.org.

Please bring gloves, a shovel or a trowel, sun protection, rubber boots, and water. And so that you can plan accordingly, it will probably be easiest to plant the seedlings while standing in the pond.