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Grow Your Own Produce Workshop Series

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Event description

Grow Your Own Produce is a 10 class monthly series taught by permaculture expert Marisha Auerbach. Each class features seasonally-relevant information about planning, growing, maintaining, and harvesting food from your own vegetable garden. 

Each month, the class is designed to help you maximize your yields and efforts in the garden by providing an overview of key activities to engage in at the right time each month from February through November. We meet on the first Wednesday of each month through Zoom. Before the class meeting, participants will receive a collection of handouts supporting the key topics for the month with a garden checklist for the month ahead. We will discuss different subjects that are pertinent to the garden that month using slides and the month’s handouts as reference. There will be ample time each class session for questions. After each class, participants receive a video of the class and pdf of the slides. 

These classes are available as a ten class series ($250), a five class consecutive series ($130), or as individual events ($30 each). For more information, email Marisha Auerbach or call (503)454-6656. 

Marisha Auerbach has spent many years observing and interacting in her garden and in the gardens of the greater Pacific Northwest bioregion. She has been growing most of her own produce year ‘round for over the past decade. Find out more about Marisha and her work at permaculturerising.com.

Class Information:

Planning, Design and Framework 

Wednesday, February 7th: 6 - 8 pm PST

This opening session will focus on garden planning and design. From the Macro perspective to the microclimate, we will discuss Permaculture design strategies that will help you design your edible landscape based on the aspect and conditions of your landscape. Thoughtful planning will help you maximize your yields and diversity of crops throughout the season. Fruit trees, berry bushes, and other large landscaping elements will be discussed as the framework for your landscape. Each participant is encouraged to have a base map of their site and some tracing paper to make notes on during the workshop. Please contact Marisha if you need support before class to have this available.

Indoor Seed-Starting, Early Plantings and Perennial Crops

Wednesday, March 6th: 6 - 8 pm PST

In March, it is time to begin planting seeds both outdoors and indoors. This session will focus on those early plantings, including many root crops, and the varieties that perform best for our climate. To aid in planning the garden, we will discuss crop rotation. Our conversation begins about the importance of good compost and how to develop a composting plan that works for your household. More information on soil building will continue in April’s class. Perennial vegetables can be transplanted at this time. Since many perennial vegetables are new to gardeners, Marisha will share about growing and cooking some of her favorite types. Handouts will include Marisha's recommended vegetable varieties, information on starting seeds, charts about thresholds for various vegetables, and, as always, a "to do" list for the month.

Mustard Greens in the Spring

Cole Crops, Greens and Soil Building

Wednesday, April 3rd: 6 - 8 pm PST

April is a key time for all of the Cole Crops, such as Broccoli, Kale, Cauliflower, Collards, and Cabbage. It is also a time of planting greens. As many plants are being planted in the garden during this month and the months to come, we will highlight how to care for the soil to support their growth.. We will continue our discussion on composting while highlighting various methods that students can use to build their garden beds and enhance fertility onsite. Students will learn how to assess their soil and determine the best local materials to use to provide an optimal growing environment for their plants. Handouts will include the "to do" list for the month, composting and soils information, and strategies for companion planting.

Warm-season Crops, Edible Flowers and Attracting Pollinators

Wednesday, May 1st: 6 - 8 pm PST

In May, the weather typically gets warmer and many flowers begin to bloom. We will discuss reliable varieties of warm season crops to grow in your garden. Now is the time to talk about Tomatoes, Peppers, Eggplant, Cucumbers, Melons, Squashes, Tomatillos, and Basil. Our cool evenings in the summer require strategies to maximize microclimate and production for many warm season crops. Many of these plants require insects for pollination. You will learn about pollination, pollinator insects, and flowers that are useful for attracting these special critters. Many of these flowers have multifunctions. We will highlight edible flowers, their functions in landscapes, and recipes. The month of May provides good growing conditions for our cultivated plants and for weeds. This class includes a discussion on common weeds in Oregon gardens, how they propagate, and strategies to prevent these plants in your garden. If you have a pesky weed in your landscape, please send a picture and email to Marisha prior to the class. Handouts for May include the "to do" list for the month, information on edible flowers, plants for attracting pollinators, and tips for growing warm season vegetables.

Purple Cape Cauliflower

Maintenance and Harvest

Wednesday, June 5th: 6 - 8 pm PST

June completes our planting of the summer vegetable garden and then it is time to focus on maximizing the harvest. For the urban gardener, this may mean optimizing a small space to produce as much food as possible. We will discuss strategies for optimizing yield of your vegetable crops throughout the growing season, including the best types of trellises for plants that like to grow up. June is often a time when we need to water the garden more frequently. Strategies for watering the garden are included in this class. Pests and diseases start to show up in the month of June. This class includes a discussion on organic and natural ways to help prevent and discourage these problems. If you have a pest or disease issue, please email a picture so we can help you find a solution! Handouts for the month include information on water efficiency, common pests & diseases, winter gardening, the "to do" list for the month, and more.

Berries, Herbs and Water Catchment

Wednesday, July 3rd: 6 - 8 pm PST

This workshop will focus on different types of fruiting crops that we can grow in our gardens as well as tips on what to do this month in the garden to optimize your harvest. Recipes and tips to store the bountiful harvest of berries will be included in this class. Many herbs are beneficial companion plants and available to harvest now. Marisha will share about some of her favorite herbs to grow with recipes. It is time to start planning and planting for fall, winter, and spring harvest. Cool season gardening will be included with the discussion on what to do this month. We will also talk about water catchment and how to determine what type of system would work best for your household. Handouts will include a "to do" list for the month, herbs for tea, winter gardening, information on growing berries, and more.

Abundance of Summer Veggies

Seedsaving and the Winter Garden

Wednesday, August 7th, 6 - 8 pm PST

In August, it is time to begin saving seeds. The weather has been dry and many plants are ripening their seed. This workshop will cover the basics of saving seed so you are ready to save some seeds from your garden this year. Since August is a key month to get many starts in the ground for harvest in the cool seasons, we will have a section of the class on winter gardening. This class will highlight what is happening in the garden in August, how to save and store seeds, and what plants need to go in the ground for fall, winter, and spring harvests. Handouts will include information on saving seeds, winter gardening, and the "to do" list for the month. 

Putting Up the Harvest

Wednesday, September 4th: 6 - 8 pm PST

The abundance from the garden and orchard is coming in. It is time to put it up for storage and winter meals. In this class, we will discuss the options for storing food for the winter including: canning, dehydration, fermentation, & freezing. A key component of this class will be focused on how to assess what your family will eat in the winter and the space that you have available for storage. We will cover the last of the plantings for the year as the last of the winter crops should be in the garden by the Autumnal Equinox. As always, this class will highlight what is happening in the garden in September, how to preserve your harvest, and prepare for the coming month. Handouts will include a to do list for the month, information on canning and food preservation, and other pertinent information.

Delicious Figs

Garlic, Cover Crops and Compost

Wednesday, October 9th: 6 - 8 pm PST

October is a time for returning inward and thinking about nourishing the soil for the future garden. This class will highlight soil building methods including mulches, composting, leaf mold and more. We will discuss types of cover crops for building soil tilth and fixing nitrogen. Mushrooms can be inoculated in the garden in October. Garlic goes in the ground this month for summer harvest. We will talk about the different types of garlic and best varieties for our region. As our weather turns colder in October, gardeners may want to provide protect their plants from the cold. We will discuss strategies for sheltering plants from the cold. This class highlights what is happening in the garden in October, how to tend to your garden, and prepare for the coming month. Handouts will include a to do list for the month, information on soil building methods, how to grow garlic, an overview of cover crops, and other pertinent information.

Wildlife in the Garden, Nourishing Soups and Planning for the Coming Year

Wednesday, November 6th: 6 - 8 pm PST

In November, the weather has become cold and the garden has been put to bed. The birds, insects, and other critters need habitat to keep them around. During this class, we will discuss ways to encourage these allies to spend the winter in your garden. By having active food webs, like these, in the garden, we invite collaboration and enhance fertility cycles on site. As this is our final class for 2023, this class will provide relevant information to help you begin planning for the 2024 garden season. We will also highlight nourishing soup recipes from local herbs, veggies, and stocks. As always, this class will highlight what is happening in the garden in November, how to tend to your garden, and prepare for the coming month. Handouts will include a to do list for the month, information on wildlife, soup recipes, and other pertinent information.

Garlic and Lavender
Stored Food For Winter

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