For the complete program follow the link under 2016 Four Corners Permaculture Convergence to Permaculture convergence program 2016
Welcome to this year’s Permaculture Convergence in the beautiful mountains and valleys of La Plata County! We are a small community of earth-loving people who are newly becoming acquainted with the ideals of permaculture. What you will see on Thunderbird Ranch are the beginning stages of many of the permaculture principles that our expert speakers will address. Hopefully that will give any fellow newbies a blue print to go from and you seasoned veterans of farming might be able to tweak an idea or two. Please enjoy your visit here and let us know how we might be able to accommodate you in any ways we have yet to consider! Following are some guidelines and tips that might help to make your visit more concise and enjoyable.
· Volunteers will be wearing electric green shirts. Stop one of us for any questions or assistance!
· Port-O-Potties will be available.
· Seating of a rugged nature will be available in some cases, very cozy in others. It wouldn’t hurt to bring a portable chair with you just in case. Also don’t forget your notepad and pen for those really interesting notes you might want to take. If you bring your water bottle with you, we will have Mancos drinking water in a big tank available to refill your bottles.
· All of the daily meals will be available for purchase by a local food vendor or you may bring your own of course.
· Cherry Creek runs a winding course through our property and in many cases she has made some steep drop offs. Please take note as you venture throughout the ranch to avoid a wet and steep misadventure.
· Thunderbird Ranch is home to 4 horses, 7 goats, 1 llama, 2 chickens, 5 dogs, and 4 cats. The horses will be fenced to keep them out of the festivities, some of the cats and dogs will probably say hi, especially Miley the white mop dog, but the other ones should be viewed from outside their enclosures. Also the llama only speaks Spanish, if you’re so inclined. Please DO NOT bring your own animals!!
Katrina Blair began studying wild plants in her teens when she camped out alone for a summer to focus on eating wild foods. She later wrote “The Wild Edible and Medicinal Plants of the San Juan Mountains” for her senior project at Colorado College. In 1997, she completed a MA at John F Kennedy University in Orinda, CA in Holistic Health Education. She founded Turtle Lake Refuge in 1998, a non-profit, whose mission is to celebrate the connection between personal health and wild lands. Turtle Lake Refuge is a wild harvested, locally grown and living foods café and sustainable education center for the community. Katrina teaches sustainable living practices and wild edible and medicinal classes locally and globally. She is the author of a book titled “Local Wild Life- Turtle Lake Refuge’s Recipes for Living Deep” and “The Wild Wisdom of Weeds: 13 Essential Plants for Human Survival” published by Chelsea Green 2014.
· Saturday 75 mins: Wild and Medicinal Plants
· Sunday 120 mins: Wild Plant Walk
Grant (Bob) Curry is a certified Permaculture Designer and along with his wife Kathy and five kids operates a high desert permaculture demonstration site on 80 acres in Cortez, CO. In addition to doing private consults, Bob has raised funds through grant making agencies and charitable organizations to develop four food forests on the Navajo Nation and is currently involved in developing several more. As surface water and perennial stream flows disappear across the reservation and red dust blows into the Rocky Mountain snowpack, Bob is working as fast as he can to bring some resilience into an extremely brittle ecosystem. Bob was just appointed this year's resilient permaculture consultant for the Ohana Kuleana Community Garden in Durango, CO.
· Saturday & Sunday 75 mins: Swales: Paradise Found
Modern agriculture has had a bit of a conflicted relationship with water, modern man even more so...where, after all, do we put the "excess" rain after a big rain event? We put it in the same place we put human waste - in the sewer. Is there another way to think about water that yields amazing results? What has the "Water Man of India” done in India's driest regions with an ancient approach to water? Find out why simple earthworks (swales) are key to unpaving paradise.
Kathy Curry believes there is nothing more important than this project and the journey her family and she are on. Her level of health and well-being inspires her daily. She lives to jump out of bed and get to work because she has a purpose. She is a wife (married 30 years and, yes, she says, he is an amazing man) and a mother to 5 wonderful adult children who made her who she is today. She is also a grandmother to three beautiful grand children who all have planted trees on her property. - Saturday 60 mins: The W’s (Who, what, when, where, why) of Permaculture
Timothy Prow is an expert in the design of sustainable living systems. He is the co-founder and co-designer of North Mountain Farm, a Dryland Permaculture demonstration and working farm site located in Hesperus, CO. He is the Owner and Operator of Roof to Root Plumbing and Heating where he designs durable and efficient water and solar hydronic systems.
Raised in the mountains of the west, Timothy is a new agrarian with extensive knowledge of water and resource management. He has designed and built sustainable systems throughout the Four Corners region.
· Saturday & Sunday 60 minutes: Gray Water & Water Retention Systems
Bevan Williams has 20 years of experience in permaculture community development (10 locations), community food systems, alternative sanitation systems implementation, and alternative construction techniques alternative energy systems. He founded "Sustainable Living Systems" (a 501c3), Montana’s first organic conference and created the largest food crop seed bank in the state. He sponsored many permaculture programs and workshops, which included many national and international speakers such as Michael Pilarsky (one of the first 5 persons personally taught permaculture by Bill Mollison), Susan Witt (CEO of E. F. Schumacher Society - USA, developed the Community Land Trust, and Berkshares a local currency), Helena Norberg Hodge (author of "Ancient Futures"), & Dr. Smirinski (CEO International Crane).
· Saturday 75 mins: The Importance of Humanity in Permaculture. How does our very presence affect nature and our Mother Earth?
· Sunday 75 mins: Are We Genetically Modified Organisms? How does this and our intent affect our role in Permaculture? How much of the human body is human DNA?
Scott Young has owned and managed this family run business for 23 years, opening the doors of Alpine Auto Doctors in 1993. He has been in the auto business for 43 years, since he was 17, and is a certified master mechanic.
Sunday 60 mins: Restore your vehicle, don't junk it.
The Ultimate Green is restore; don't replace. Maintaining a vehicle as best as possible to achieve maximum longevity is a huge step towards environmental consciousness.
Elizabeth Agee: Elizabeth Agee is an avid Permaculturist and Seed Steward. She has spent the last eight years studying ethnobotany, permaculture, herbalism and edible landscape architecture. She now lives in Boulder, Colorado designing edible gardens for families and small spaces with Matrix Gardens and co-runs the Living Seed Library out of Boulder Public Library. She also offers 'Regenerative Life Designs' which provides goal oriented coaching through a Permaculture lens. She can be contacted via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
· Saturday 75 mins & Sunday 60 mins: Building Resilience Through Community Seed Saving
Tyler Van Gemert: “I became an acupuncturist to be of service for people in a healthy, natural way. My father is a western medical doctor, and although I have witnessed great benefits from emergency methods, in the long run – medications leave the root of underlying conditions unresolved. Oriental medicine is natural medicine, with acupuncture is the instrument of choice and herbal remedies are at the core of the medicine I practice.”
· Saturday & Sunday 30 mins: Qi Gong
Courtney Herrera Swift is a recent graduate of a 500 hour medical herbalism certification course from Denver, CO. She is the owner of Howard's Herbal Helper LLC and a mother of two who loves teaching children all about plant medicine. www.Howardsherbalhelper.com
Sunday 60 mins: Kid’s Plant Walk
Jude and his wife Addie Schuenemeyer are co-founders of the Montezuma Orchard Restoration Project whose mission is to preserve rare fruit genetics, revive historic orchards, plant new orchards, research the history of heritage orchards, provide orchard education, and foster the blossoming of a new fruit economy in Montezuma County. The romance and the historical significance of the apple in Montezuma County has to be appreciated: "The more we study the fruit that used to come out of this county, the more we become aware of how massive the fruit industry was and how skilled these people were, these were really professional orchard people.”
· Sunday 60 mins: Orchard Restoration
Scott Koch is a mycologist who loves to share his knowledge of fungi to improve human & environmental health & create a better understanding of the important role fungi play in nature. He is a state certified Wild Mushroom Identification Expert who brings wild mushrooms to market & contributes at the state level to develop responsible wild mushroom guidelines for state environmental health officials & the retail food establishment. As a mycopermaculturist, mycoremediator & experiential educator, he installs & designs mycolandscapes mimicking natural systems, reestablishes soil health, increases food productivity & remediates landscapes. Alumnus of Prescott College & founder of Telluride Mushroom Company, he has been creating mycological landscapes, picking wild mushrooms, & educating from an ecological perspective for over 20 years. He has written sustainable harvest protocols & mushroom field guides for the San Juan Mountains & is currently developing a myco laboratory & grow room in the Mancos Valley.
· Sunday Part 1: 60 mins & Part 2: 75 mins: Fungal Applications in Desert and High Altitude Permaculture (Part 1) During this experiential presentation, participants will learn about the role of fungi in nature & soil health, the relationship between cultivation growth parameters & natural growth cycles, & how to adapt our installation to the peculiarities of growing mushrooms in the desert & at altitude. (Part 2) Participants will be installing mushroom mycelium into a part of this Permaculture landscape, while learning about other methods of application as well.
Paula Nelson (SOCO)I have been a beekeeper for about 5 years now! I was the President of a local beekeeping club for 2 years, and am now involved with Southern Colorado Beekeepers. I keep my bees in Top Bar hives, Langstroth hives and recently in Russian Horizontal Hives. I have never treated my bees with chemicals and though I promote treatment free beekeeping, I encourage people to keep bees in the way that works best for them.”
· Sunday 60 mins: Bee-keeping 101 This talk will cover general beekeeping practices.
We can show people how to "read" a frame, talk about bee hierarchy, configure a Langstroth hive, procure and install bees. I will also talk about causes of CCD, how pesticides have affected our bees & about clean beekeeping practices.
Gregory Hopkins operates Breen Mesa Farm and was a compost specialist at the Univ. of Hawaii , Maui College. He has extensive background in various forms of composting as well as regenerative soil development. His farm also hosts Veterans Homestead Project teaching homesteading skills to combat veterans as a means of self-reliance and healing.
· Saturday 75 mins & 75 mins: Worm Composting Basics- A guide for creating,
maintaining and troubleshooting a worm composting system
Dor Haberer has been running a permaculture farm at a Jewish summer camp for the last three years integrating Jewish wisdom with permaculture and organic farming. When he is not at camp, he travels around the world studying intentional communities and permaculture systems. He also apprenticed with Sierra Seeds Cooperative this past year learning about plant breeding, seed saving, and the importance of cultural memory.
· Saturday 75 mins: Jewish land based ethics and what they have to offer to the permaculture world. (Part 1)
· Sunday 75 mins: Spirituality and permaculture (Part 2)- how deepening ones spiritual practice and focusing on zone 00 or yourself can allow you to help others in a more profound way.
Chris Ricci has taught permaculture in 13 countries over the last 15 years, and has been practicing sustainable living near Durango for the last 10 years. He is a mushroom identification expert and an avid bass fisherman, and offers guided trips to hunt both. Find him on the web at MajestyMushrooms.com
· Saturday 75 mins: Aquaculture
· Saturday 75 mins: Owning a Home & Retrofitting
Gregory Munson first came to the Southwest in 1991 beginning a twelve year career at Mesa Verde National Park as a Park Ranger and working in the research division. He became interested in the Ancestral Pueblo people's relationship with the cycles in the day and night sky and conducted research on the architecture and astronomy of Sun Temple at Mesa Verde. He now serves as the President of the Society for Cultural Astronomy in the American Southwest (www.scaas.org).
· Saturday 60 mins: Sustainable Living in the Thirteenth Century: Teachings for Our Children. We will examine the agricultural practices, water management and understanding of the natural cycles that governed the climate, day and night sky of 13th century SW Co natives.
Cannon grew up in the suburbs of Detroit, Michigan; dissatisfied with the lifeway practiced there, he set out to find a more purposeful and fulfilling existence. His path led him around the globe, through diverse lands and cultures, and finally to the wild places of the Desert Southwest, where he spent 5 years living as a Nomadic Goat Herder, subsisting primarily off of a small herd of goats and the bounty of the Wild Earth. He now strives to educate, inspire, and empower those seeking a more meaningful lifeway with earth-based skills, practices, and experiences. Learn more about Cannon and his work at WinterMoonTribe.org.
Sunday 60 mins: Goats As a Holistic Subsistence Strategy (or part of one) Find out everything you ever wanted to know about Goats, and how they fit into a Holistic Subsistence Strategy, or are a (nearly) complete system within themselves. Learn about Goats for meat, milk, hides, fiber, back-country packing, companionship, and so much more. Also, learn how you could potentially utilize public lands as a modern day nomadic herder.
John Wickman is the owner of Native Roots in Durango.
· Saturday 60 mins: Organic Pest Control
Fred Christiansen works at Western Excelsior in Mancos, who specializes in environmentally friendly products from renewable resources. Western Excelsior manufactures a wide variety of rolled erosion control and sediment control products.
Saturday 75 mins: Excelsior Products & How Best to Use Them
Joel Glanzberg Patterns in Nature
Lindsay Semilla building Community in Permaculture
Gary Fourstar is of Assiniboine lineage, adopted into the Costanoan Rumsen Ohlone tribe, the Shawnee tribe and Anishinabe Turtle Mountain Ojibwe tribe by Elders of each. He has been a teacher & ceremonial leader for the last forty years.
* 75 mins Saturday & Sunday Creating Right Relationship: A traditional indigenous viewpoint of permaculture in creating right relationship with all living things in and around your living space and beyond.
Debby Fourstar grew up in Long Island, far from nature. She found a passion & propensity for languages & went on to study French in France & Spanish in Guatemala & Mexico. She has various degrees in languages & Art History, & also an M.A. in Education, which she finally settled into as a profession. She has managed to transform from NYC suburb girl to ranch hand to goat cheese-maker extraordinaire. She’s the one behind the scenes pushing us all (even if we’re kicking!).
11020 CR 105
Mancos Colorado 81328
Take 160 west to Cherry Creek Rd. Turn South (left).. Go 5 miles to 11020 on the left.
Take 160 east 8 miles to Cherry Creek Rd. Turn south (right). Go 5 miles to 11020 on the left.