Our short courses range from one day, weekend or week long classes on topics such as permaculture, wilderness survival, ethnobotany, hunter/gatherer lifestyle, wildlife tracking, bird language, homesteading and more. We're always adding new courses so check for updates either on this page or feel free to subscribe to our Facebook page, which is updated frequently. If you'd like to create a custom course for a small group, fill out the form here and we'll get right back to you.
In this 2 day course, we'll show you how to keep pests away, water your plants less, build the perfect soil and much more. We'll teach you how to work with and mimic nature to create incredibly resilient home scale permaculture systems. This class will be almost entirely hands on, taking place on our permaculture farm in Sedro-Woolley, WA. For a more detailed course description click here.
In this one day course, we will cover how to build a comprehensive herbal medicine cabinet using herbs that grow here in the Pacific Northwest. We'll go over not only how to make the medicines, but also when/where to harvest them, dosages and safety, how to grow them yourself and resources which will help you continue on your journey as an herbalist. Here are the medicines that we'll make and the topics which we'll cover:
- Medicines: Tinctures, salves, lotions, liniments, poultices, balms, eye washes, syrups, lozenges.
- Teas, infusions and decoctions and which herbs provide the most benefit.
- Safety: While herbal medicines are extremely powerful, they can also be dangerous if taken in high dosages.
- Harvesting: Where to find the herbs, how to harvest and doing it ethically.
- Harvest Schedule: A handy schedule as to when to harvest each herb at it's peak medicinal value.
- Growing your herbs at home within a permaculture system.
- Herbal medicine for kids.
- Herbal medicine for pets.
To find out more and register, click here.
In this two day course we will cover all of the short term survival essentials that can save your life if you're caught out in the wilderness. Topics include shelter building, friction fire, water purification, primitive trapping, and wild foraging. We'll talk about survival psychology, priorities and energy conservation. Our instructors go on regular staged survival trips and teach from personal experience. For a more detailed course description click here.
When you get a professional soil test done, you typically get back a report stating various nutrient levels, pH, structure, texture and ability to hold nutrients. But modern day tests are leaving out the most crucial component to soil health, and that is the biology living within it. When we till our soil, or apply inorganic fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides and fungicides, we wipe out the biology (the bacteria, fungi, protozoa, nematodes, microarthropods etc) that the plants depend upon for survival.
The biology in the soil is responsible for keeping diseases and pests in check, holding nutrients within the root zone (so they're not lost to leaching), creating soil structure and converting insoluble nutrients into plant soluble forms. The biology also make it so that you never have to add any amendments to your soil....ever! All of the nutrients that plants require exist within the sands, clays and silts (mineral components of the soil). All that's required is a balanced soil food web to hold and convert them into plant soluble forms.
To find out more and register, click here.
Learn some simple and amazing formulas that will help improve your health and our environment. More and more studies are showing just how harmful chemicals are, not only to our environment, but ourselves as well. Many of us are very aware of how they have affected our soils and food, but not many realize they are a large source of indoor pollution and a huge threat to human health.
No legal requirements exist for ingredient labeling on household cleaning products and these products have been linked to many ailments.
We will be exploring the dangers of common products and finding a low cost way to not only keep our families healthy. but also be kind to the environment. This class is great for anyone who is interested in finding alternative ways to correct the damage that is being done through commercial products. Find out more and register here.
When we walk down the street or through the park, caught up in our own little worlds, we are often disturbing the birds. When we do this, the birds set off alarms to the other wildlife in the area, signaling our approach. This early warning system is the reason that most of us don't experience wildlife all that frequently. The animals are actually tipped off that we're coming long before we arrive because they're tuned in to the birds. They have to be, or else they won't survive.
Birds just don't alarm humans, but other animals as well. Especially predators that threaten either them or their young. The neat thing is that they alarm different predators differently and the type of alarm is indicative of a certain species of animal. We'll teach you how to identify the different types of alarm and more importantly how not to set off alarms so that you experience more wildlife.
In this class we'll spend a day in a place where bird species are incredibly diverse (over 200 species are seen here over the course of a year). We'll learn not only the species that live at Union Bay and their behavior, but also how they interact with the other wildlife in the area. Your walks in nature will be forever changed after taking this class. There's a story always going on out there and you'll know how to read it. Find out more and register here.