Spring 2016 Bootcamp – Food production and more

ducksSat/Sun March 19/20 2016, 9 – 5, at Sycamore Commons (Townsite Anglican Church) in Powell River, and at other local sites on Sunday morning.

Improve your household resilience by learning how to raise small livestock, grow food, cook with the harvest, and build your homestead infrastructure. Socialise and share with others who have similar goals, and get inspired by those who are already doing what you want to do!

This full weekend of workshops, classes and field trips will take your urban homesteading to the next level, whether you’re just starting or have been doing it for years. Many sessions are hands-on and all are taught by local experts. You can attend the whole weekend, just one day, or specific sessions, as you wish. New this year is a whole stream of Permaculture classes!


Here’s the schedule as we know it so far: there may be some changes before the actual event. See below for more details of the individual sessions.

7 – 9 pm   Intro to Permaculture
9:00 – 9:30 am Check-in and coffee
9:30 – 11 am Gardening with Beneficial Insects – Samantha Sherman Create Your Own Food Forest – Ron Berezan PC1: Ecological Soil Management
11:15 – 12:45 Frugal Gardening for Beginners – Rita Boehler-Wiebe PC2: Working With Water
Lunch 12:45 – 1:30 With local ingredients & vegan option: catered by Katie McLean
1:30 – 3:00 pm How to make Kombucha and milk Kefir – Kitty Clemens PC3: Hot Composting and Other Alchemy
3:15 – 4:45 Kombucha & Kefir continued PC4: Teaming with microbes
9:30 – 12:00 Plant Propagation: new plants from old (9:30 – 12) – Ann Nelson @ Patricia Theatre Keeping Small Livestock in your Homestead Garden (10-12) – Wendy Devlin @ Glade Farm PC offsite: Site Analysis & Mapping Skills
12:15 – 1:15 Lunch at Edie Rae’s Cafe
1:30 – 3:00 pm Weeds 101 – Identification, strategies, and recipes – Ioni Waisgluss Onions and Garlic and Peas: growing alliums and legumes – Kevin Wilson PC5: Design Tools 1: Pattern Analysis
3:15 – 4:45 Weeds 101 (cont) PC6: Design tools 2: Zones and Sectors

This weekend aims to be zero waste and support local producers. Please help us reduce our carbon footprint by carpooling, biking, walking or using the bus to get to and from the site.


Sycamore Commons at the Townsite Anglican Church, 6310 Sycamore St. Please enter through the rear basement doors. Bus route 1 stops right outside, or across from, the church.


Full Weekend: Early bird price $99 till Mar 5th
Full Weekend: Regular price $135 from Mar 6 to 19
Special deal: 15-18 year-olds only $40 for the whole weekend!
Single Day: $75
Single workshop: $30 each

Deposit $20 on registration, remainder due by Mar 12
You can pay up to 50% in Powell River Dollars PR$

Click here to register

Work trades are welcomed and needed! (NOW FULL)
Skookum members: for the first 5 Skookum members who register, Skookum will pay 50% of the cost for you in PR$ (NOW FULL). After the first 5, Skookum will pay 20% for you in PR$.
Part scholarships are available – contact Kevin directly: 604 483 9052 or uhspr@fiddlersfarm.com

Cancellation policy
50% refund up to 2 weeks before (Mar 4)
No refund after that but you are welcome to send a substitute

Workshop Details

jump to the Permaculture classes

Gardening with Beneficial Insects
Learn how to encourage the natural enemies of many garden pests. By the end of this workshop you’ll know how to increase the biological diversity of your garden and fight off pests such as aphids in organically sustainable ways.
Instructor: Samantha Sherman

Create Your Own Food Forest
Forest gardening is an ancient approach to creating diverse perennial plant systems that provide an abundance of food, medicine, fuel, building materials, biodiversity and beauty for generations. While forest gardening has traditionally been more common in the tropics, the past few decades have seen versions of this practice multiplying throughout the temperate and colder regions of the planet. Find our how you can transform your urban yard or rural property into a forest garden including the best species for the Powell River region.
Instructor: Ron Berezan

Frugal Gardening for Beginners
Beginner Gardeners are often overwhelmed and discouraged. This short class is an introduction to how to make frugal raised beds, how to fill them on the cheap and what to plant in them to harvest the most bang for the buck.
SPECIAL PRICE only $5 for this workshop.
Instructor: Rita Boehle-Wiebe

How to make Kombucha and Milk kefir
Kombucha (fermented tea) and Milk kefir have been around for many years. There are many benefits to drinking these liquids and many ways you can incorporate them in your diet/lifestyle.
This workshop is a great place to learn about the health benefits, how to use these drinks, how to make them and best of all; taste test them. Come, have fun and try out these great drinks. You can also take a scoby/starter liquid (cost $15.00) and/or kefir grains (free if available) home with you at the end if you feel this is something you would like to make yourself.
Instructor: Kitty Clemens
Materials Fee: $5: optional $15 for kombucha starter

Saturday Lunch
Optional lunch available at Sycamore Commons, catered by Katie McLean. There will be vegan options, and as many ingredients as possible will be local.
Lunch cost: $5

Plant Propagation: new plants from old
Learn about the many different ways to create new plants from the ones you already have, then get hands-on experience dividing plants in the Patricia Theatre garden. Plants available to take home by donation to the theatre restoration fund.
Instructor: Ann Nelson
OFFSITE Location: Patricia Theatre
Materials Fee: Donation for plants if you take them home
What to Bring: Small, sharp, heavy knife OR machete OR hatchet; kneeling pad if you use one; pruners; pots to take plants home in. Dress for the weather!

Keeping Small Livestock in your Homestead Garden
Learn how to successfully integrate chickens, ducks and rabbits into your homestead garden. The benefits of raising small livestock include providing high-nitrogen manure for plant fertilizer and a quality source of eggs or meat. In addition, poultry help control common pests like slugs and insects. Raising small livestock is also an educational and entertaining activity that your family and friends are likely to enjoy.
Instructor: Wendy Devlin
OFFSITE location: Glade Farm, 6834 Smarge Ave in Wildwood.
What to Bring: Dress for the weather!

Sunday Lunch
Optional group lunch at Edie Rae’s Cafe, 5 mins walk from Sycamore Commons. A flat rate package will be available for $13: sweet kale salad, mixed veggie grilled sandwich and a bowl of red lentil soup. Or you can order off the menu instead if you like.
Cost: $13 or your choice.

Weeds 101 – Identificaton, strategies, and recipes
Everything you ever wanted to know about weeds! What is a weed, and what makes weeds so successful? We’ll be looking at weed morphology & diversity, strategies for removing & controlling weeds, identification skills & resources, and even some culinary uses & recipes for common weeds. Includes hour-long walkabout in Townsite.
Instructor: Ionatan Waisgluss
What to Bring: Dress for the weather!

Onions and Garlic and Peas: growing alliums and legumes
Some of our most popular vegetables fall into the Allium (onion) and Legume (pea and bean) families. Learn the theory and practice of growing common and less-well-known examples of both families.
Instructor: Kevin Wilson

Permaculture sessions

Intro to Permaculture
An introduction to the concepts and principles of Permaculture. If you are new to permaculture you’ll need this class to give you a foundation to build on over the rest of the weekend.
Instructors: Erin Innes & Ron Berezan

PC1: Ecological Soil Management 
Understanding the ecology of soil will help you create a management plan for long-term fertility and provide ecological benefits to life inside and outside of your garden.

PC2: Working With Water
Learn to manage your landscape’s precious water resources year-round, so that you keep the water where and when you need it, no matter the weather or season.

PC3: Hot Composting and Other Alchemy
A hands-on session to help you get serious about making and using great compost.

PC4: Teaming with microbes 
Making and using teas, brews, and inoculants to bring your soil to life.

PC offsite: Site Analysis & Mapping Skills
The first step in good design is knowing how to make good observations of what you’re working with. This hands-on session will focus on learning to see the landscape with your Permaculture eyes and translating that information into maps and design tools you can use.

PC5: Design Tools 1: Pattern Analysis 
Natural ecosystems work in patterns. This session will show you some design tools to bring the power of natural patterns into your landscape.

PC6: Design tools 2: Zones and Sectors
Using the principle of beneficial relative location, this session will show you how to design your landscape for lower maintenance and higher productivity by working with the land instead of against it.