2017 Class Schedule

Most courses are part of the Farm & Garden Apprenticeship but are also open to the public for $20 per session. They occur on Tuesday evenings from 6-7:30 pm, and will either be at EarthDance, in a public classroom or at a field trip host farm. Please register in advance. Current apprentices may bring along one guest free of charge to one session during the year. Schedule subject to change; contact programs@earthdancefarms.org for updates and class locations.



The Real Dirt on Soil

Farm Manager, Eric Stevens will discuss soil ecology & how to keep it healthy. 

May 2nd




Field Trip: Maplewood Richmond Heights School Gardens

Melissa Breed-Parks, head of the MRH school district’s extensive educational garden program will lead a tour of district’s permaculture-inspired edible schoolyards.  She will discuss garden-enriched learning and youth leadership in the garden. 

May 9th



Save the Veggies! Pest & Disease Management

Join us for a class on the preventative and action-based methods of saving your produce from various local pests and diseases with Farm Manager, Matt Lebon. 

    May 16th


Preserving the Harvest with Simple Methods

Crystal Stevens and other EarthDance staff will outline the best methods to make your produce last. 




Permaculture 101 Part I

In this introduction to permaculture, you will learn about the function and implementation of permaculture design principles at the homestead and garden scales, as well as several examples of commercial farm-scale permaculture. 



Permaculture 101 Part II

Real Earth Design founder Jason Gerhardt will further discuss permaculture design and implementation. 

June 6th


Starting from Scratch: Methods of Propagation

Farm Manager, Eric, will walk through the steps of creating new plants from various plant parts. 

  June 13th



Field Trip-Gateway Greening Bell Demonstration Garden

Tour Gateway Greening‘s urban garden featuring 20 demonstration beds and learn about all the garden has to offer to the community. 

  June 20th



Organic Fruit Production & Orcharding

Join Guy Ames of Ames Nursery and Orchard for a talk about the challenges and solutions for raising a wide variety of fruit on a small or commercial scale in the Midwest’s hot and humid climate. 

   June 27th


Water Management for the Farm or Garden

Jason Gerhardt returns to the farm to teach the best practices to manage water on the farm or in the garden. 

    July 11th



Resources for the Farm or Garden

Listen in on a panel-style discussion with speakers from Gateway Greening and other organizations on obtaining useful resources to begin your farm or garden project. 

    July 18th


  Aug 8th

Field Trip: Farm Manager, Matt Lebon’s, Urban Permaculture Backyard

Observe how to obtain a permaculture oasis on any scale, even in a city. 


Intro to Herbalism and Home Apothecary

Crystal Stevens, EarthDance Marketing Coordinator, herbalist, and author of Grow Create Inspire, will teach the basics of medicinal herbs and lead a hands-on activity. Be sure to bring a mason jar. 

Aug. 15th



Field Trip- Three Rivers Farm

Three Rivers Community Farm in Elsah, Illinois produces mixed vegetables for 300 CSA members on 12 acres of ground. Farmers Amy Cloud and Segue Lara will speak to the mechanization and efficiency methods that enable them to grow so much food with minimal labor. 




Compost = Miracle

Farm Manager and Compost Enthusiast, Matt Lebon will share the science of composting, and how you can get started building your best compost pile yet! Participants will also learn how a functioning compost pile is like a dance party in an elevator. 

Aug. 29th



How to Farm Without Buying Your Own

Farm Manager, Eric, and Farm Apprentice and EarthDance apprenticeship alumni, Nate will discuss their farm work history and the best routes to take to find a career in the field. 

Sept. 5th



Practical Soil Stewardship & Cover Cropping

Join us at the farm for a hands-on class on soil stewardship techniques. Learn about cover cropping, soil samples, crop rotation, and other methods of soil management used at EarthDance. 

Sept. 12th


Field trip- Thies Farm & Greenhouses

Take a tour of the highly productive Thies Farm and learn about the sustainable practices they utilize. 

Sept. 19th



7 Key aspects of Crop Planning- Produce Better Crops More Consistently

Learn how to efficiently crop plan with organic farmer, presenter, and blogger, Michael Kilpatrick. Michael helps farmers apply business principles and best practices to farming and agriculture.