Eco-Spiritual Educational Sanctuary
(est. 1983)

Forest Gardening: Medicines from the Edge

July 15 – 16, 2023

“If you do things right,
all you do is reap the miraculous abundance.”

“How to find fresh & local food FREE without  growing a garden.”
~Shantree

Forest ecologies reveal numerous valuable qualities we can learn and be inspired by. We, humans, would be wise to emulate nature in how we live with each other and in how we grow our food. 

Forest ecologies are:

  • Self-maintaining, renewing, fertilizing, and propagating.
  • Conserve clean air, water, nutrients, soil excellence, and biodiversity.
  • Self-sustaining – a system that is stable, irrepressible, and resilient.

These qualities emerge from the dynamics of the forest as a whole system and not from the elements that comprise the woods alone. To design productive edible ecosystems that express these same qualities, we must understand forest structures, functions, patterns, and processes and use this knowledge wisely.

We will dive deeply into the vision, theory, and practice of designing wholesome, dynamic, and resilient medicinal ecosystems using temperate deciduous forests as models.   This course uses site walks, experiential exercises, and design projects to help you understand how the architecture, social structure, underground economics, and the successional processes of natural forests can be applied to the design of herbal ecosystems. You’ll realize various ecological design processes while designing a range of compilations of food-producing ecologies at our demonstration and research gardens.

You will leave inspired and empowered to design ecological forest gardens.

Pattern & Observation

  • The Web of Connections
  • Working with Nature
  • The Forest Garden Design Process
  • Natural Patterns in the Garden
  • Patterning: Unity & Biodiversity
  • The Three Ecological Principles
  • The Five Elements of the Forest Architecture
  • The Seven-Story Garden: Vegetation Layer
  • The Practical Process: A Step-by-Step Guide
  • Ethical foraging of the wild edibles of the season

“The keystone of forest gardening is a paradigm shift in our human consciousness.
From monoculture mind to polyculture mind;
From separation to unity;
From exploitation and manipulation to respect and interdependence;
From intervener to ecosystem participant.”
~Dave Jacke

To Register

Date: July 15 – 16, 2023

Time: 9 am to 5 pm.

Cost: Early-bird $250 (2-weeks before the workshop)
Regular price: $300

Includes: all workshop materials, handouts & charts

All lunches will be potluck style, using as many organic, local, wild, live-food plant-based ingredients as possible. The centre will provide in-season soups, salads, herbal teas and snacks.

It does not include taxes, accommodations or travel.