When asked, “What is a weed?” Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote, “A plant whose virtues have never been discovered.” For those interested in exploring the virtues of wild plants and other edibles of Northern Vermont, the School of the New American Farmstead at Sterling College is offering the course “Sustainable Foraging in the Northwoods.”
This six-day course, held May 30–June 4, 2017, will cover the art of collecting, processing, and preparing wild plants of the northern region of Vermont. Students will process and save plants for wildcrafting and prepare simple dishes to explore the flavor and qualities of common wild edibles. Students will engage with local foragers, plant healers, herbalists, and food entrepreneurs.
The class will be taught by Sterling College faculty Laura Beebe, David Gilligan, and Laura Spence, as well as by herbalist Annie McCleary, founder and director of Wisdom of the Herbs School in Woodbury, Vermont.
The class is being offered at Sterling College as part of the School of the New American Farmstead, its continuing education program that provides a variety of classes and workshops for aspiring agrarians, artisan food enthusiasts, and environmental stewards. These hands-on short courses in small-scale food production and sustainable farming offer one-on-one mentorship, inspiration, skills, and new perspectives that will feed the body, the mind, and the spirit.
This is the second year of the visionary School of the New American Farmstead, the creation of President Matthew Derr. Under President Derr’s leadership, the College has launched the Rian Fried Center for Sustainable Agriculture & Food Systems; made substantial progress on renewable energy; transformed its agricultural facilities; and set records for enrollment and fundraising.
The School of the New American Farmstead at Sterling College is generously underwritten by two great Vermont businesses: Chelsea Green Publishing, the preeminent publisher of books on the politics and practice of sustainable living, and Vermont Creamery, an award winning creamery offering fresh and aged goat cheeses, cultured butter, and créme fraîche that combine the European tradition of cheesemaking with Vermont’s terroir. Both Chelsea Green and Vermont Creamery are partner businesses that share a deep commitment to the environmental stewardship mission of Sterling College.
Online registration is now open, but spaces are limited. Students are encouraged to apply as early as possible. Academic credit is available for all courses. For more information this course and to register, visit www.sterlingcollege.edu/foraging.