Love Apple Farms hosting homesteading workshops

If you’ve ever wanted to learn bee-keeping, homebrewing, or other random stuff you can do at home, then you might want to look into Love Apple Farms in Santa Cruz, CA homesteading classes for 2012. Interests don’t have to go so far as raising bees, they also have classes on baking the perfect pie crust, artisan yarns, fruit trees, biodynamic gardening, and more. See some of the highlighted classes.


Workshop: Beer Making Basics
Dates: Saturday, January 14, 2012 from 11:00 AM – 3:00 PM
Sunday, March 4, 2012 from 11:00 AM – 3:00 PM
Cost: $95

Love Apple Farms is proud to host Dave Bossie for this special workshop. Dave, a veteran home brewer from Ben Lomond, is an award-winning beer maker and judge. We will brew a batch of beer in class, and will go over the following topics: the history of beer, beer styles, ingredients, and equipment and techniques. We will talk about the fun art of beer making, and touch upon more advanced techniques like mashing and dry hopping. The workshop will also include a tasting. Thirsty yet?!?

Workshop: Artisan Yarns
Dates: Saturday, January 21, 2012 from 9:00 AM – 3:00pm
Cost: $75

If you are a weaver, knitter, crocheter, quilter, or other textile-minded artist, you are going to love this class! We will show you how to process wool from raw materials using only organic methods and no harsh chemicals. You will learn how to wash the wool, dry it properly, pick it, card it, and spin it. You will experience working with three different types of sheep fleece as well as Angora wool (which comes from our very own Angora rabbit, or “urban sheep”) and practice working with a drop spindle as well as a spinning wheel.

Workshop: Design the Perfect Vegetable Garden
Dates: Sunday, January 22, 2012 from 9:00 AM – 1:00 PM
Saturday, March 3, 2012 from 2:00 PM – 6:00 PM
Sunday, May 6, 2012 from 9:00 AM – 1:00 PM
Cost: $55

Learn how to site your vegetable beds for maximum efficacy by taking into consideration factors such as climate, season and sun exposure. Topics covered in class include bed design, materials, soil types and more. Also learn supplier recommendations that save you money and give you maximum results.

Workshop: Growing Tomato Transplants from Seed
Dates: Saturday, January 28, 2012 from 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Sunday, February 19, 2012 from 9:00 AM—12:00 PM
Tuesday, March 13, 2012 from 10:00 AM – 1:00 PM
Cost: $55

Learn how to sow and care for young tomato seedlings! Participants choose from over 125 varieties of heirloom tomatoes from Love Apple Farm’s specialty seed bank. We sow them in seed flats and soil (supplied), while receiving direction and instruction on proper soil to use, heirloom variety selection for your individual growing conditions, germination requirements, care after seedlings emerge, proper transplanting techniques, and more. Students take home a sown flat of up to 48 different varieties of tomatoes with the potential for a total of 150 live plants (that’s a value of $525). Plenty for your garden and as gifts for your friends, too! Tomato seeds sown in these classes will be ready for your spring planting. Classes limited to those 12 years and older.

In the Kitchen with Chez Pim: Perfect Pie Crusts
Dates: Saturday, February 4, 2012 from 11:00 AM – 3:00 PM
Cost: $115

Few things are as intimidating to home bakers as pie crust can be. Let Chez Pim help you demystify the art and science of baking beautiful crusts. She will demonstrate several different types of dough for us, including basic pie dough, dough for a sweet tart, dough for a chocolate crust, and dough for a nut crust. You will gain the confidence to experiment with different fillings and crusts, and never ruin another pie crust again!

Workshop: Early Spring Vegetable Gardens

Dates: Sunday, February 5, 2012 from 10:00 AM – 3:00 PM
Saturday, February 25, 2012 from 10:00 AM – 3:00 PM
Cost: $75

Take advantage of our mild California Bay Area climate to get your vegetable garden up and productive for the season! Learn about quick, cool weather plants including lettuces, spinaches, chards, carrots and more that can be planted now and harvested in spring. The topics covered in class include bed preparation, heat and light requirements, frost control, germination tricks, companion planting, organic pest control, fertilizing and harvesting techniques. Students will also get to sow a flat of seeds to take home to tend with instructions on how to grow.

In the Kitchen with Chez Pim: Macaron Madness
Dates: Saturday, February 11, 2012 from 11:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Saturday, March 17, 2011 from 11:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Cost: $115

In this workshop, our home baker extraordinaire, author and food blogger Pim Techamuanvivit will teach you two principal techniques for macaron shells (French Meringue method and Italian Meringue method) and three elemental bases for macaron fillings (ganache, butter cream, and fruit). You’ll get your hands dirty and make your own macarons and discuss common faults in macarons and how to avoid (or fix) them.

Workshop: Basic Garden Carpentry
Dates: Saturday, February 18, 2012 from 9:00 AM – 1:00 PM
Sunday, May 20, 2012 from 2:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Cost: $55

From basic trellises, gazebos, and benches all the way up to fences, planter boxes, arbors and small sheds, you’ll learn from a master carpenter who has built many of the structures at the renowned UCSC Farm and Garden. Ideas, formulas and plans will be explained in a manner that is easily absorbed by the beginning builder. Basic tools and joinery will be discussed along with a host of simple and complex ideas that will inspire you to take on the challenge of creating beauty in form and function in the garden setting. We will give a demo on building a small structure on site as well.

Workshop: Fruit Trees
Dates: Sunday, February 19, 2012 from 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Cost: $55

In this class you will learn how to graft and care for all dormant fruit trees. Though we will be mostly focusing on many different varieties of apples (which are easy-as-pie and bountiful to boot), you will also learn about peaches, pears, cherries, plums, pomegranates, persimmons, and mulberries. We will take you on a tour of all the fruit trees growing on the farm and teach you all about year-round care. Then we will retreat to the gardening classroom and get to work grafting scions onto rootstocks. Each student will take home three potted rootstocks grafted with his or her choice of scions.

Introduction to Biodynamic Gardening
Dates: Sunday, February 26, 2012 from 9:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Sunday, June 17, 2012 from 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Cost: $55

Biodynamic agriculture has been around for nearly 100 years thanks to the brilliance of Rudolf Steiner. Often called the “forerunner of organic farming,” biodynamics works with nature, the soil, living organisms and the cosmos in a rich, inter-woven circle of health, fertility, and spirituality. If you’ve been interested in how it works, from the earth to the stars, come take our basics course. We’ll introduce you to biodynamics and give you a game plan for how to implement some or all of its tenets into your own garden.

Workshop: Summer Vegetable Gardening
Dates: Sunday, March 18, 2012 from 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Saturday, April 21, 2012 from 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Saturday, May 26, 2012 from 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Cost: $95

This is an all day, intensive seminar on starting and tending a summer vegetable garden. Participants sow and take home two full flats of summer vegetables (a $52 value). Topics covered include bed preparation, fertilizing, amending, proper sow and transplant dates for specific crops, discussion of over 20 different warm-weather veggies, companion planting, pest and disease control, online preferred discount vendors of gardening supplies and seeds, and more. Farmer Cynthia Sandberg takes you out into her garden and shows you how. See the pests in person, the composting techniques, bed preparation hands on and up close.