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10:00-11:15 am – Workshop Session II


  • Making Your Farm/Garden Produce It's Own Fertility - Will Bonsall

  • An Apple a Day: Growing Organic Apples - Part II - Ron Christie

  • The Winter CSA - Sophie Courser-Kellerman

  • Silvopasture in Practice - Part II - Steve Gabriel

  • Perky, Calm, and Alert: Backyard Herbs for Mental Wellbeing - Maria Noel Groves

  • Beekeeping in New England – Seasonal Management, Treatment-Free/Organically - Troy Hall

  • Growing Kiwiberries in New England - William Hastings

  • Wintertime Lambing Management - David Kennard

  • Creating the Local Agrarian Commons - Amy Manzelli; Ian McSweeney; Jeremiah Vernon

  • Using school garden produce to cook with kids in the classroom - Stacey Purslow

  • Raising More and Better Food While Easing Climate Change Through Building Soil Carbon - Julie Rawson

    • & Jack Kittredge 

Making Your Farm/Garden Produce It's Own Fertility

Will Bonsall

Most organic growers buy in various soil amendments to build or maintain fertility, but is it necessary or even sustainable? 

Will Bonsall is a subsistence farmer and author from Maine. Will has worn many hats since going "back to the land," including prospector, draftsman, gravedigger, hobo, musician, logger, and artist, among others; however, he considers subsistence farming to be the only true career he ever had. He is the director of the Scatterseed Project, which he founded to help preserve our endangered crop-plant diversity. His first book, Through the Eyes of a Stranger (Xlibris, 2010), is an eco-novel set in a sustainable society of the future. He most recently authored Will Bonsall's Essential Guide to Radical, Self-Reliant Gardening (Chelsea Green, 2015). Will lives and farms in Industry, Maine, with his wife, Molly Thorkildsen, and two sons.

An Apple a Day: Growing Organic Apples - Part II 

Ron Christie 


Growing organic apples in the Northeast can be a real challenge (some say impossible). But, it can be done if you are willing to explore the apple orchard of the future. This all-day workshop is geared toward the small-acre orchardist and back-yard gardener who want to have success growing high quality, chemical-free apples. We will talk about all aspects of what it takes to create a friendly apple growing environment, including site selection and soils, orchard design, rootstock and variety selection, planting and early care, and disease and pest management. 


Ron Christie is passionate about teaching people how to grow their own nutritious organic food for better health and well-being. He is an avid four-season grower, and a former NOFA-NH Board Member and Master Gardener who loves sharing his experiences as a gardener and farmer. Ron ran Living Earth Farm, a certified organic vegetable and fruit micro-farm in Brookline, NH, until 2017 when Living Earth Farm was sold. Ron and his family are starting a new organic farm in Concord, NH. 


The Winter CSA 

Sophie Courser-Kellerman 


After six seasons of running an 90 share CSA farm, Noah and Sophie of Alprilla Farm shifted their "CSA Season" from June-October to October-February three years ago. Now they can essentially focus on growing all summer and then marketing all winter. This change has improved their quality of life, bottom line and labor efficiency. Come learn about their farm calendar, storage, infrastructure and how they fit their CSA into the rest of their farm enterprises. 


Sophie Courser-Kellerman is a Warner, New Hampshire native who currently farms down in the flat lands of Cape Ann in Essex, Mass. With her husband Noah, she runs Alprilla Farm where they cultivate 4 acres of vegetables with mostly ox power. All their veggies are grown to be sold during the wintertime through a CSA, bulk orders and wholesale. They grow 2 acres of small grains for human consumption in rotation with their vegetables and also tend a small 100% grass-fed beef herd and make hay. 


Silvopasture in Practice – Part II 

Steve Gabriel 


Learn the fundamental principles and approaches to integrating trees, livestock, and grazing pasture and planning tools to help you get silvopasture established. 


Keynote speaker Steve Gabriel is an ecologist, forest farmer, and educator living in the Finger Lakes Region of New York State in the US. Throughout his career, Steve has taught thousands of farmers and land managers about the ways farming and forestry can be combined to both benefit the ecology and the bottom line of the farm. He is Extension Specialist for the Cornell Small Farm Program and has served as guest faculty at Cornell University, Sterling College, Paul Smiths College, and the Omega Center for Sustainable Living. Alongside his wife, Elizabeth, he co-stewards Wellspring Forest Farm, where they produce mushrooms, maple syrup, duck eggs, pastured lamb, and elderberry extract, all from forest-based systems. 


Steve co-authored Farming the Woods with Ken Mudge in 2014, and is author of the new book Silvopasture, released in 2018. He passionately pursues work to reconnect people to the forested landscape and see the value of trees in agriculture. 


Perky, Calm & Alert: Backyard Herbs for Mental Wellbeing 

Maria Noel Groves 


Many easy-to-grow herbs have tremendous value for our mental wellbeing with immediate and long-term benefits for cognition, focus, sleep, energy, and a calm yet upbeat mood. Maria will draw from her new book Grow Your Own Herbal Remedies sharing details on useful herbs including holy basil, ashwagandha, gotu kola, bacopa, rosemary, lemon balm, motherwort, skullcap, blue vervain, magnolia, and rose. Learn how to grow, harvest, and prepare, with specific indications for each plant's uses. 


Maria Noel Groves is the bestselling author of the award-winning Body into Balance and Grow Your Own Herbal Remedies and owner of Wintergreen Botanicals in Allenstown, NH. She has more than 20 years of experience, is a registered professional herbalist with the American Herbalists Guild and a clinical herbalist certified by the Southwest School of Botanical Medicine. She writes and teaches nationally about herbal medicine and offers both on-site and distance herbal study courses and health consultations. 


Beekeeping in New England – Seasonal Management, Treatment-Free/Organically 

Troy Hall 


It’s often said that its no longer possible to keep bees without having to treat them for varroa mites and other miladies. Can we return to the good ole days? I will share my experience gained over the last decade and seasonal management on running a small commercial treatment free apiary centered around Queen breeding/ rearing, propagating nucleus colonies and honey production. 


Troy Hall is owner of Hall apiaries located in Plainfield, NH. Troy manages a small commercial apiary of 500 colonies where he specializes in breeding queen bees, and provides the local community and beyond with raw honey, beeswax, propolis, and nucleus colonies, and has done so since 2010 without the use of any chemicals or treatments of any kind.


Winter Time Lambing Management 

David Kennard 


In this workshop David Kennard of Wellscroft Farm will discuss and show in a Power Point presentation all the steps needed to ensure a happy and successful winter lambing. Topics will include ewe and lamb nutrition, lambing procedure, facilities, tricks to ensure baby lamb survival, dystocia solutions, weaning and marketing. 


David Kennard, of Wellscroft Farm and Wellscroft Fence Systems in Harrisville, NH, has been farming sheep for over forty years and during that time has had over 12,000 lambs born in the winter. David is a regular speaker at NOFA conferences and farm shows, and hosts popular educational workshops such as Lambing Clinics, Fence Clinics and Grazing Workshops.  Along with his son, Colin, and their hard-working border collies, he also delights audiences with his informative and entertaining herding demonstrations at county fairs, sheep festivals, and farm days throughout New England. 

Growing Kiwiberries in New England

William Hastings


Flavorful and nutrient-dense, the kiwiberry (Actinidia arguta) has an extensive 140-year history in New England, first as an ornamental landscape vine and subsequently as a novel fruit crop. In recent decades, producers have experimented with field-scale kiwiberry production; and not only demonstrated the commercial viability of the crop in our region but also helped catalyze interest among consumers. A crop overview, best production practices, and market potential will be presented.

Will Hastings is the vineyard manager and research technician for the Kiwiberry Breeding and Development Program at the NH Agricultural Experiment Station. His graduate studies were based post-harvest and best production practices for kiwiberry production and he is co-author of “Growing Kiwiberries in New England, a Guide for Regional Producers”.


Creating the Local Agrarian Commons 

Amy Manzelli; Ian McSweeney; Jeremiah Vernon 


Agrarian Trust is creating local Agrarian Commons establishing 501(c)(2) land-holding entities to support land access and tenure for the next generation of farmers. This model is a necessary and innovative approach to address the realities of farmland ownership. Agrarian Commons will hold farmland to: (1) support ecological restorative agriculture, (2) convey 99-year lease tenure and equity interest, (3) share in ecological stewardship investment, and (4) support farm and community viability. 


Amy Manzelli is a member and part owner of BCM Environmental & Land Law, PLLC in Concord, NH. She practices environmental, conservation, and land law across New Hampshire. She is sought after statewide to deliver dynamic presentations and trainings on various land-use and environmental topics, including constitutional bounds of takings and exactions, conservation easements with options to purchase at agricultural value, and more. 


Ian McSweeney’s life’s work is focused on human connection to land and food. From social work focused on developing outdoor experience based education programs, to real estate brokerage and consulting prioritizing conservation, agriculture and community within typical land development, to leading the Russell Foundation supporting customized approaches to farmland ownership, conservation, management and stewardship. Ian is now the director of Agrarian Trust and is focused on transforming how land is owned. 


Jeremiah Vernon is a 10th generation New Hampshire native. He grew up in New London, NH on his family farm on Pingree Rd. and has always had a love for animals and the outdoors. He graduated from Proctor Academy and received his Bachelor of Science from Bates College, earning a degree in Biology. Post college, Jeremiah worked on Nezinscott Farm in Turner ME, where he fell in love with farming and his wife, Nicole Vernon. He has farmed land on the seacoast of NH for 10 years. 


Using School Garden Produce to Cook with Kids in the Classroom 

Stacey Purslow 


Preparing food with kids in your classroom can be a challenge but also a fun hands-on activity as you harvest and take food grown in their garden to the next step-preparing and eating it! In this workshop we will try recipes and activities using typical school garden produce. Learn about the NH Harvest of the Month program too. One lucky teacher will win a classroom cooking kit! 


Stacey Purslow is the coordinator of the NH Farm to School program based at the UNH Sustainability Institute. Stacey has been the program coordinator there for more than 10 years. She has a background in culinary arts, nutrition and art. The NHFTS Program serves as a facilitator engaging farmers, distributors, food service directors, teachers, health educators and administrators in adopting farm to school practices in classrooms, cafeterias and communities. 


Raising More and Better Food While Easing Climate Change Through Building Soil Carbon 

Julie Rawson & Jack Kittredge 


A radical shift in our farming practices over the past 6 years has resulted in more and higher quality food, clamoring customers and farmer satisfaction. We'll discuss the practices on our diversified animal, vegetable and fruit farm, all in the context of emerging scientific discovery about soil carbon. 


Julie Rawson has been an organic farmer for 37 years and is Executive Director of NOFA-Mass.


Jack Kittredge is an organic farmer, editor of The Natural Farmer, and has authored reports on soil carbon building. Jack and Julie own and operate Many Hands Organic Farm, a certified organic farm in Barre, MA. 

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