Class - Intro to Homesteading Series Sept 2/3 - Chris Outdoors

Intro to Homesteading,

Permaculture & Forest Gardening

~ Sept 2nd & 3rd (Mon/Tues), 2024 ~ 

This class is for anyone who dreams of homesteading, growing their own food and wants to have more control of their food security and self-reliance. More experienced homesteaders and gardeners are most welcome to attend as well. 

The Wild Muskoka Homestead has been evolving for the past 14-years and integrates permaculture principals, forest gardening and wild foraging along with more traditional growing practices. We strive to find a holistic balance around growing food for ourselves and family, sharing the land with wildlife and navigating the realities and challenges of the modern world and our changing climate. 

Come "piggy back" off all we have learned the past 20+ years striving for a more self-sufficient and sustainable lifestyle. 

Dates: September 2nd & 3rd (Mon/Tues) 2024

Times: 10am to 5pm

Where: Dwight, Ontario

Cost: $300 + HST 

** Please read the statement on ethics, values and code of conduct below before registering. 

Day 1 - Intro to Modern Homesteading & Permaculture

We live busy lives and thus have put a lot of thought into what crops and systems are the best exchange of calories in (work) for calories out (harvest) on our small homestead. We also focus on systems & crops that make us more resilient and food secure in our quickly changing world and climate. 

In this intro class, you will get to explore:

~How to integrate permaculture principles into a small garden or homestead for increased efficiency and resilience.

~ Designing perennial food polycultures to maximize space, yield and effort

~ How we cycle nutrients to feed animals, build soil and reduce our reliance on outside resources. 

~ Raising meat rabbits and chickens for food and soil building

~ How to butcher and process a rabbit

~ Garden design considerations to be less dependent on unsustainable and fragile modern infrastructure and preparing for climate change.

Day 2 - Intro to Forest Gardening, Food Forests & Perennial Crops

Forest gardening & tending the wilds is an ancient practice of being in symbiotic relationship with the woods and wetlands. We plant, prune and tend the wild spaces around us to grow food, medicine, firewood, tools and more while trying to share and improve habitat for wildlife, plants, fungi, etc.

In this intro class you will get to explore:

~ The multiple different wild forest gardens we tend and the way we design and work with each of them.

~ Best practices for observing, designing and working with nature to create forest gardens and perennial food guilds.

~ Foraging, wild plant identification as well as planting and tending wild trees and plants. 

~ Sustainable forestry for firewood, maple syrup, willow basket materials and more.

~ How we grow more edible and medicinal mushrooms than we can possibly eat in a year.

Pictures From Our Wild Homestead:

(Click arrows on side to scroll)

Meet Your Homestead & Forest Gardening Guide:

Chris Gilmour:

Hi Chris here!

I fell in love with gardening in my early twenties when I started vegetable gardening in my parent's backyard while working the summers at the Royal Botanical Gardens in Burlington, Ontario.

I've spent the past two decades travelling and learning about organic farming, permaculture, forest gardening, wild foraging, herbal medicine and emergency and disaster preparedness.

In 2010, Laura and I were fortunate to be able to purchase 26-acres in Muskoka where we get to continue to learn and integrate all we have  learned in the way we tend and work with the land.

We strive to find a balance between acquiring food and medicine for ourselves while sharing the land and supporting the needs of our Wild Kin.

We also are constantly working to find balance between the wild ways that call us, and the pressures and realities of the modern world.  

We grow, tend the wild, forage, hunt and fish as part of our lifeway.

If this interests you, come play, grow, tend and learn with us! 


Ethics, Values & Code of Conduct:

We strive to create a safe and welcoming space for people of all experience levels, genders, nationalities and spiritual/religious backgrounds. To us, gardening, foraging and tending the wild is a sacred relationship with the land. We also believe strongly in Indigenous sovereignty and rights here on Turtle Island.

To maintain this safe and welcoming environment we keep politics out of programs. We recognize politics are important and part of the world, but these classes are about connection with the land, ourselves, each other and skill development.

We ask that all participants be open-minded and non-judgemental towards other participants and agree to the following values: 

~ Respect for ALL other participants regardless of their religion, gender, nationality or political orientation. 

~ Being good stewards and caretakers of the earth and forest and holding reverence for the other species and kin we share this planet with. 

If you have any questions about these values, please email me before registering to discuss them.

If you disagree or have issues with these values, this class is probably NOT the right class for you.

Join us on the Wild Muskoka Homestead & Forest Garden

September 2 & 3, 2024