The Hippo


Jul 21, 2019








Courtesy photo.

New Hampshire Permaculture Day

When: Saturday, Aug. 26, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Where: Mount Kearsarge Indian Museum, 18 Highlawn Road, Warner
Cost: $30 admission in advance, or $40 at the door; includes access to all workshops and farm-to-table lunch

All-natural knowledge
Food workshops, farm-fresh lunch at Permaculture Day

By Matt Ingersoll

 Whether you are looking to improve your organic gardening techniques or are just starting out, there’s a lot to discover at New Hampshire Permaculture Day.

The fifth annual event, which includes a farm-to-table lunch, family-friendly activities and more than 30 vendor workshops and demonstrations related to permaculture in the Granite State, is happening on Saturday, Aug. 26, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Mount Kearsarge Indian Museum in Warner.
“Permaculture is essentially a set of principles that aims to find practical solutions to ecological, social and environmental challenges that we see today,” said Bret Ingold, a volunteer of the event’s planning committee. “What that includes is all kinds of ideas like organic gardening, natural building, water and forest management and alternative energy. … It’s a way to look at and understand all these parts as a connected system. … In other words, [permaculture] is a collective term for a lot of different practices. It’s, at its heart, kind of an agricultural movement that has broadened over time.”
Ingold said the event has had a different location across the state each year to build momentum and awareness about permaculture concepts and to give each community its own platform. Past events have been held in Alstead, Chichester and Dorchester, with future plans to move farther north.
This is the first New Hampshire Permaculture Day event to be held in the Kearsarge region of the state, with nearly all of the food from the farm-to-table lunch coming from farms in Warner and surrounding towns, according to Ingold. Foods will include organic locally raised pork, several different salad and side options and more.
“The Kearsarge Food Hub [in Bradford] will also be doing a presentation on how regional food systems can do more to meet the needs of the community,” Ingold said.
He added that bringing the event to the Mount Kearsarge Indian Museum for the first time offers a unique opportunity to integrate the indigenous knowledge of permaculture-related concepts in the state.
“Permaculture was widely imagined in the ’80s, but it’s not like organic gardening was a new idea,” Ingold said. “This stuff has been practiced for thousands of years.”
Food-making workshops will include how to make your own grilled cheese, how to make hard ciders, goat milk-making, a fermentation station, and how to properly can and preserve food from your garden for the winter, among other topics.
The more than 30 presentations and demonstrations will also include grafting fruit trees, edible self-care and natural medicine, water management and more. 
Ingold said demonstrators this year will also take advantage of the extensive garden on the museum’s property, offering talks about traditional Native American ways of gardening and planting food.
Presentations are divided into four different topics, with about five or six happening simultaneously throughout the day, according to Ingold. Visitors will receive a schedule at the door and be able to pick and choose which ones they would like to view.
“Most of the events … are on the introductory side, but for people who are more self-sufficient, there’s a lot here for them too,” he said. “There is an interesting group of presenters here and it’s unique to get them all in one place.”
Both the Mount Kearsarge Indian Museum and The Little Nature Museum will be open for tours throughout the day and will be holding demonstrations of their own, mostly in tribal techniques like basket weaving and canoe-building. 

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