The Gardener’s Classroom

With winters arrival, gardeners and farmers everywhere are taking advantage of this quiet time of the year to retreat inside for the life long learning, reflection, and inspiration that comes with the humbling efforts of putting seed to soil.

Organic Herbs, Thyme

The gift of darkness brings with it time to sink deep into gardening books and resources, time to lavish in the beauty and potential with the arrival of 2013 seed catalogs, and much needed opportunities to gather the community together for learning and celebration at one of the many farming and gardening conferences happening around the county this winter.

This blog entry comes with an invitation to it’s readers to write in and share sources of knowledge and inspiration you are growing with to be added to the resource pages of this blog.

Here begins my list of reading and explorations to properly set my roots for the season ahead:

Books

The Seed Underground; A growing Revolution to Save Food by the inspirational writer and local farmer Janisse Ray.

A Georgia Food Forest by Permiculturist Cynthia Dill.  An incredible perennial crops and permiculture gardening guide for Southeast GA, and beyond.

Teaming with Microbes By Jeff Lowenfels and Wayne Lewis.  The Organic Gardener’s Guide to the Soil Food Web.  An excellent resource for understanding that delicate system of life beneath our feet on which all life stands.

The Soul of the Soil by Grace Gershuny and Joe Smillie.  A soil building guide for master gardeners and farmers.

Citrus Fruit for Southern and Coastal Georgia.  A UGA publication.  Winter and early spring are a great time to get new citrus trees planted for years and years of Vitamin C!

Regional Conferences to put on your calendar for 2013

The South Georgia Growing Local & Sustainable Conference
Reidsville, Georgia
January 26, 2013
http://southgeorgialocalfoodnetwork.ning.com/

Georgia Organics Annual Conference
Atlanta, GA
Feb. 22-23, 2013
http://georgiaorganics.org/conference/

Southern Sawg Annual Farming Conference
Little Rock, Arkansas
Jan. 23-26, 2013
http://www.ssawg.org/january-2013-conference/

North Carolina State University, Department of Bio & Ag Engineering, Annual Vermiculture Conference.
For all the Wormers out there sitting at the edge of their seats like I am for more knowledge on the Vermicomposting this is one to watch for next fall!  I was thrilled for the opportunity to attend the Nov. 2012 conference in Chapel Hill, NC with all the leading industry professionals, university researchers, and vermicomposters from around the world.  Professor Sherman’s website is a great resource to explore for vermicomposting technology.
http://www.bae.ncsu.edu/workshops/worm_conference/

Great Seed Catalogs

Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds   www.rareseeds.com
Southern Exposure Seed Exchange    www.SouthernExposure.com
Johnny’s Selected Seeds    www.Johnnyseeds.com
The Potato Garden   www.potatogarden.com

“A garden is a grand teacher.  It teaches patience and careful watchfulness; it teaches industry and thrift; above all it teaches entire trust.” Gertrude Jekyll.
May Inspiration Bloom
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