Monthly Archives: January 2014

Rocket Mass Heater Workshop Part 2–FREE–Cob Stomping Party

From Robin and Mike at Regenerative Lifestyles:

Greetings and Happy 2014!  Regenerative Lifestyles is dedicated to bringing regenerative education to the Front Range, this year we have many exciting events lined up; Earthship Greenhouse Dome, Earthship Chicken Coop, Aquaponics, Climate Battery, Earthworks, Permaculture Design, Seeds in the Ground Gardenscaping, Permablitz, Film Showings, Childrens Eco-Art Camp, Potlucks, Festivals and More!  If you would like to be involved helping to organize these events, and bringing an Earthship Visitor Center to Denver, let us know! 

Our first event for this year is community building cob party!  Let’s add more mass to the Rocket Mass Heater at Ruckus Ranch in Erie, Colorado.  Sunday, February 9, 2014, 10AM.  Please bring food to share!  Ruckus Ranch , 1878 Old Hwy 52, Erie, CO

As Temperatures drop into the single digits and below all across the country, this simple Rocket Mass Heater provides a means to heat homes for extended periods of time with minimal fuel.  We held a workshop and lots of people showed up to learn, build, and stomp cob in freezing temperatures.  We are transforming this old barn into a permaculture education space, with rocket mass heat, a passive solar greenhouse, and a kitchen that treats its own waste!

Building community in an educational setting is what helps us pulse with inspiration.  This is the perfect setting to dive into permaculture/natural building community.  This is a free event, but donations are greatly appreciated, and will go towards future events.


Early Registration for Advanced PDC Ends Soon

Just a reminder that if you’re considering taking the upcoming Advanced Permaculture Design Course on Designing Resilient Local Communities, the early registration discount ends January 31st.  From the course organizers:

“The Front Range advanced design course in community resilience is coming right up!  Our teaching team has been busy lining up expert guests to share their wisdom, along with several dynamic design projects for the class to tackle.”

Advanced PDC Flier

Registration form with more details

Lyons Permaculture Design Course open for registration

The Lyons Permaculture Design Course is open for registration.  From

The Lyons Farmette, YummyYards and Eat are thrilled to offer a two-week Permaculture Design Certification Course at The Lyons Farmette, located in Lyons, CO, from March 7th – March 23rd, 2014.  The course features an intensive 82-hour immersion into permaculture principles and ecological design, featuring many diverse, dynamic and experienced permaculture teachers from the Colorado Front Range.
Through a combination of lecture, discussion, workshops, site tours, hands-on projects and on-site group design projects, you will learn how to observe ecosystems and design regenerative systems that provide food, energy and shelter. Engage in the revolutionary act of self-empowerment and discover how to build resilient human communities that care for the earth, provide for people and create a surplus for all to share.

Course Includes:

82 hours of instruction and hands-on activities
50 permaculture topics covered
20 hands-on projects and workshops
10 hours of instructor-supervised group design time
2 weeks of inspiration and life-changing permaculture immersion!

Instructors to include Laura Ruby, Spencer Branson, Erin Schey, with guests Jason Gerhardt, Marco Lam, and Pavlos Stavropoulos.

For more information on curriculum, instructors, lodging, and registration, visit


Lyons PDC 2013 from hayrebert on Vimeo.

The Human Scale screening at Boedecker Theater this week

This week, The Boedecker Theater at The Dairy Center for the Arts, 2590 Walnut Street, Boulder, CO 80302, is screening The Human Scale.  From The Dairy Center for the Arts:

Screening times:

50% of the world’s population lives in urban areas, by 2050 it will be 80%. Cities have become the primary human habitat, and if we are to make them sustainable and livable we must re-imagine the very foundations of modern urban planning. Rather than examining buildings and urban structures themselves, visionaries study the in between spaces of urban life: the places where people meet, interact, live, and behave.

Stunningly photographed, Director Andreas Dalsgaard’s film travels around the world to explore how Gehl and other like minded designers, city planners, and urban activists have begun to transform such cities as diverse as New York, Beijing, Christchurch, and London.

(Andreas Dalsgaard, 2012, Denmark, 1:23, NR)


Introductory Meeting for Southwest Seed Library, Sat., Jan. 25, Durango

Southwest Seed Library is holding their introductory meeting on Saturday, January 25th, 2014, at 1pm, at the Durango Public Library’s conference room located downstairs.  From Southwest Seed Library organizer, Monea:

Learn more and bring seeds to donate!

  • Free regional hardy seeds (food, herbs, flowers)
  • Improving soil and food with knowledge of our earth
  • A school for saving and sharing seeds
  • A place to learn about growing in our challenging climate
  • A connecting point between farmers, gardeners, and schools to share knowledge and resources for a stronger, healthier Southwest
  • A long term Permaculture project that will grow with our community
  • Empowerment for self care and abundance

Find us on Facebook : Southwest Seed Library

Southwest Seed Library Flier

Upcoming Advanced Permaculture Design Course: Designing for Resilient Local Communities

In early 2014, Sandy Cruz, Barbara Mueser, and Marco Lam will pilot an advanced permaculture design course specially tailored to Colorado’s Front Range and beyond. 
Addressing global changes that affect local bioregions and communities, they envision this course as a catalyst in coalescing energy towards large-scale permaculture design and activism among the many hundreds of PDC graduates living here.  We have the tools, resources and creativity.  It’s time to step up to emerging challenges, focus our incipient group intelligence, and establish permaculture design as a guiding force for the region in anticipating and responding to local and planetary conditions.  Seize the moment!
Additional information is below:
Advanced Permaculture Course: Designing for Resilient Local Communities
The recent floods and fires in Colorado gave our local communities a real test challenge to their resilience.  How can we, as a community, become more adaptive to possible future scenarios?  How can current observations and information help us respond more elegantly to unknown challenges?  This 40-hour Advanced Permaculture Design Course will explore solutions for issues that cascade from global changes to our biosphere and to our human communities.
Focusing on community-scale design for earth care, people care and fair share, we’ll consider designs for water, food, shelter, reclamation, energy, health, spirit, community, livelihood and justice — guiding students towards resilience, interbeing and support.  Students will delve into designing for disaster — for both immediate emergencies and long-term failure of large systems — and will explore regenerative solutions for their personal lives and local communities.
Zombie Apocalypse Permaculture!  This intensive course will include community discussion, lecture, hands-on design team projects, site tours, celebration, and certification in Advanced Permaculture Design.  Readings and design team work outside of class will be required.
Instructors: Barbara Mueser, Sandy Cruz, Marco Chung-Shu Lam
and special guests Michael Brownlee, Carolyn Baker and more
Dates: Evening of Thursday, February 20th — Special Keynote Event
Weekends of February 22/23, March 22/23, April 26/27, 2014
Location: Boulder, Colorado
Prerequisite: PDC Certification
Cost: $650 if paid in full by 1/10
$700 if paid in full by 1/31
$800 after 1/31
Registration: Christina Zahn, xtinazahn at gmail dot com


2014 Planner from Earth Guardians available now

From Robin at Regenerative Lifestyles:

Regenerative Lifestyles is dedicated to helping spread awareness about awesome opportunities to help the Earth, the People and Share the Wealth!  Every month we will be offering an event, a workshop, movie, or even a Permablitz!  Looking forward to the new year full of great community building happenings!

Now available!  The first publication with Earth Guardians, a local Youth Environmental Justice organization:

2014 Educational Activity Book / Calendar / Planner: A 46 pager, and packed with ideas, facts, photos, paintings, puzzles, games, and Earth eco-tips.  This is an opportunity to learn about vocabulary words and fields of study that are offering solutions to the issues and problems we are facing as a planet.


For more information, and to order:


Upcoming Workshops: Fruit Tree Care, Climate Battery Build, Design for Disaster, Mycology

The Living Arts School is hosting workshops in January and February on Fruit Tree Care, Climate Battery Build, Design for Disaster and Basic Mycology.  All workshops are taught by graduates of the Permaculture Through the Seasons! permaculture design course in Boulder: Wesley Swartz, Avery Ellis, Brian Scott, and Jared Urchek.  Additionally, Avery and Brian completed an Advanced PDC with Peter Bane, Sandy Cruz, and Becky Elder, and Avery has completed his Permaculture Teacher Training.

From The Living Arts School:

Why, How, & When Do We Prune: Fruit Tree Care for Everyone
Sunday, January 19th, 1-4pm

Join us for a comprehensive exploration of the art of dormant fruit tree pruning and training.  Learn how to encourage your trees to yield high quality fruit much earlier in their lives and live significantly longer, as well as proper techniques for removing dead, diseased, or broken limbs.

During this workshop we will meet at Morning Side Orchard to discuss why, how and when we should prune our fruit trees.  We will walk through the orchard and look at young and old trees,  and talk about what to look for in the structure of the tree when pruning. Hands-on practice with pruning, and techniques for making the proper cuts will be an important part of this workshop, so that all participants can leave with the know-how to care for their own fruit trees.

Please note: All participants must arrive with their own set of pruning shears, in order to have the chance to practice the techniques we will be learning in the workshop.  This is an outdoor workshop, so please dress warmly.

Instructor Wesley Swartz has always been close to nature.  He first started working in nurseries at a very young age and eventually traveled to Europe to supplement his education by working on organic farms and nurseries in Italy and Spain.  He has been managing a private orchard in Boulder for the last 5 years and teaches classes on orcharding and permaculture to interested community members.  Wesley truly loves everything associated with orchard life—beekeeping, composting, guild planting and grafting–and his passion for what he does is contagious.

No experience necessary.  Please bring a pair of pruning shears and a notebook & pen.  For participants ages 14 and older, minimum of 4 participants, maximum of 15.

Cost: $45

To register for this workshop, please visit:


Designing for Disaster-The Fire Flood Duality: Utilizing Earthworks to Avoid Disaster

Sunday, January 26th, 2-4pm

The very nature of disaster is that it surpasses our expectations. As our global climate shifts, localized disasters are becoming more prevalent. In recent years fire and then floods have ravaged Colorado and other Western states. This workshop will explore our modern experience of disasters, focusing on the relationship between fire, floods, and human living spaces.

Through hands-on learning with sand trays, you will acquire the know-how to harvest rainwater for self-sufficiency while growing native edible plants. We will deeply explore the principles of water flow and earthworks, which can be used to mitigate the potential for fire, while preventing floods. These appropriate permaculture techniques can be utilized to protect your home and family from these disasters in the future.

This workshop follows on the heels of the recent Colorado flood, which drenched a large portion of our state in 21 inches of water.  Our hearts go out to those who experienced significant damages in the flood.  We would like to offer you an automatic 20% discount on this workshop.  Please email us for more information.

Instructor Avery Ellis is an Ecological Systems Designer.  He holds a Masters of Ecological Design and a BS in Biology. He first explored these concepts during a semester abroad in India, where he studied permaculture, renewable energy, waste water treatment, and natural building methods.  Upon completion of his Bachelors degree, he gained personal experience on an organic farm, spent a year as a solar installation specialist, and was a supervisor for a recycling company intent on net zero waste.  He continues to study permaculture design in Colorado and is one of the only certified greywater installers in the state.

Please Note: You may find it helpful to bring a photo of your backyard, or the land you wish to think about as you play with designs during the workshop.  You may also wish to bring a notebook and pen, to record some of your designs for future implementation.

No experience necessary.  All materials and supplies provided.  This workshop is Wee Folk Approved, meaning that it is appropriate for families.  Children ages 7 and younger are free with a registered adult, children between ages 8 and 13 may register at half-price with a registered adult.  If you would like to register your children, please email Elizabeth in advance at  Minimum of 4 participants, maximum of 12.  Pre-registration is required.

Cost: $40

To register for this workshop, please visit:


Build a Climate Battery: Subterranean Heating and Cooling System

Saturday, February 1st, 9am-5pm

Integrated greenhouse designs have a lot to offer us in cool climates, and can allow us to stretch our climatic zones, even into the subtropic, all year long.  This workshop will teach you how to build your own Subterranean Heating and Cooling System, SHCS, aka “climate battery”, which works to capture the heat of the sun and store it underground for future use in your greenhouse.

This workshop includes an overview of the process needed, from start to finish, for building a climate battery, as well as hands-on experience working with elements of the actual build.  Instructional packets will accompany hands-on learning and verbal instruction, to allow participants to walk away with a comprehensive understanding of climate battery construction and implementation.

Instructor Brian Scott is the owner and operator of Boulder Stonescapes, as well as the co-owner and operator (along with his wife, Amanda) of the 63rd Street Farm in Boulder.  Along with his expertise in masonry, Brian holds a Permaculture Design Certificate and has worked tirelessly with Amanda to make 63rd Street Farm a permaculture-based working farm that now feeds over 150 families every year.  Combining his two passions, Brian manages the design and construction of many of the farm’s elements–such as a greenhouse and climate battery, and upcoming projects like a mobile chicken coop and root cellar.  He is passionate about passing on his knowledge and skills, and helping other families realize their dreams for incorporating regenerative practices of agriculture and urban homesteading into everyday life.

No experience necessary.  For participants ages 14 and older.  Please bring a notebook and pen, as well as a sack lunch…we like to eat together at the folk school!  All other materials and tools will be provided.

Cost: $95

To register for this workshop, please visit:


Basic Mycology: Mushroom Cultivation

Saturday, February 15, 1-5pm

This introductory mushroom cultivation workshop will explore the mushroom life cycle, types of mushrooms, basic cultivation skills and concerns, and three easy methods of cultivation.  We will also take an in-depth look at considerations around myco-agriculture and myco-remediation (using mushrooms in agriculture and in cleaning up toxic waste).

This class is hands on and will teach three easy to use mushroom growing techniques. Participants will walk from this course with an Oyster kit, the knowledge of how to produce Oyster kits en masse, how to get further ‘mileage’ out of old mushroom kits by creating garden beds, and how to inoculate logs and stumps.

Come one, come all, and bring your friends!  Freshly brewed Chaga mushroom tea will be available, but bring your own snacks.

Instructor Jared Urchek, the owner and operator of Boulder High Country Mushrooms, is a purveyor of fine, gourmet fungal food and medicine.  Beginning his fungal studies through a basic permaculture course, he furthered his studies through Paul Stamets’ Mushroom Cultivation and Mycoremediation courses. With a fully functional mushroom laboratory and cultivation space located at the 63rd St Farm in Boulder, Colorado, he travels the land searching for the most delicious, most medicinal mushrooms to culture and offer back to his fellow humans.

No experience necessary.  All materials provided.  For participants 15 and older (participants under 15 are considered on a case-by-case basis), minimum of 4 participants, maximum of 15.  Pre-registration is required.

Price: $65.00

To register for this workshop, please visit: