Adult Education

Hone Your Skills of Self-reliance and Environmental Stewardship

We offer adult students a diverse selection of classes: Gardening and grow your groceries, herbal studies, culinary arts, nature and environment, natural arts and crafts and animal husbandry to inspire you to participate in a local sustainable food system. The skills we teach go beyond self-reliance and environmental stewardship. With every interaction we open a world of possibilities to people who may never have had access to the beauty, wisdom and innate knowledge that our natural environment provides.

We offer both individual classes and longer courses. Some classes are offered through a partnership with the Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op. (During the registration process, you will be redirected to Brown Paper Tickets. Even though some classes are offered through a partnership with SNFC, all classes are held at Soil Born Farms American River Ranch.) Download class schedule >>

Grow Your Groceries

These classes teach adults basic gardening skills to transform outdoor spaces into thriving, abundant edible organic gardens. We offer both individual classes and longer courses, such as the Beginning Home Gardener Weekend Intensive. Individual class topics include: preparing spring, summer, fall and winter gardens; building soil fertility; garden design and seasonality; irrigation and water management; natural pest management; composting; fruit tree care; seed saving; beekeeping; foraging wild edibles and more.

GYG Upcoming Classes

Event Venue Date Description
Growing Medicinal and Culinary Herbs American River Ranch
  • Tue., April 14, 2020 5:30pm

This class is postponed due to the Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic and in adherence to our government’s health and safety guidelines. Thank you for your patience and understanding. Herbs in the home garden can add flavor to your meals, home remedies to your medicine cabinet, and beauty, diversity and beneficial insect habitat to your landscape. This hands-on class offers instructions for growing an array of herbs, and tips for harvesting and using what you grow.

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Garden to Vase: Growing Cut Flowers American River Ranch
  • Thu., April 16, 2020 6:00pm

This class is postponed due to the Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic and in adherence to our government’s health and safety guidelines. Thank you for your patience and understanding. Grow beautiful flowers without tilling the soil. We will talk about how to grow no-till flowering perennials and annuals that do well in our climate throughout the seasons. Students will learn the best flowers for cutting as well as the basics of harvesting and arranging. This is a lecture and demonstration style class.

Register
Building Soil Fertility American River Ranch
  • Sat., April 18, 2020 9:30am

This class is postponed due to the Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic and in adherence to our government’s health and safety guidelines. Thank you for your patience and understanding. Healthy soil is the foundation of a bountiful garden. Learn the composition of soil and how we can improve it to grow thriving plants. In this hands-on class, we will assess which nutrients and amendments healthy soils need and find resourceful ways to create flourishing crops for your home garden or family farm.

Register
Homegrown Herbalism Course American River Ranch
  • Tue., April 21, 2020 5:30pm

This course is postponed due to the Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic and in adherence to our government’s health and safety guidelines. Thank you for your patience and understanding. This course is an opportunity to explore herbal medicine from soil to teacup. Participants will learn the basics of planning, starting, and maintaining an herb garden, plant harvesting and storage, safe and sustainable collection of wild medicinal plants, making home remedies for use throughout the year, and the specific applications for several medicinal plants. This is primarily a hands-on, outdoor course, with lecture woven in.

Register
Home Gardener Weekend Intensive American River Ranch
  • Sat., April 25, 2020 10:00am

This class is postponed due to the Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic and in adherence to our government’s health and safety guidelines. Thank you for your patience and understanding. Designed for beginning gardeners, the Grow Your Groceries Beginning Home Gardener Weekend Intensive will cover the essential topics to help the new gardener create and maintain a thriving, abundant edible organic garden. Combining indoor presentations with interactive demonstrations and hands-on activities, this course will give you the knowledge and confidence to get out and grow food for you and your family. Course topics include garden design and seasonality, building healthy soil, garden preparation and planting, water and irrigation, garden ecology and pest control and growing herbs and perennials.

Register
Preparing a Summer Garden American River Ranch
  • Wed., April 29, 2020 5:30pm

This class is postponed due to the Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic and in adherence to our government’s health and safety guidelines. Thank you for your patience and understanding. Plan your garden space for optimal production and enjoyment in this hands-on class. You will learn how to prepare, plant and care for an abundant, thriving summer garden. We will discuss starting seeds, crop selection, garden layout, and more. This class is perfect for brand new gardeners or for those who are new to this growing region.

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Managing Pests American River Ranch
  • Sat., May 2, 2020 9:30am

We will review common garden pests in the Sacramento areas and how to manage them without toxic pesticides. There will be a special focus on beneficial insects. A portion of the class will be outside in the field to find and identify pests and their natural enemies on site. Participants will have the option in class to purchase a $20 color photo identification guide from the University of California featuring over 110 specific disorders and pests of vegetables and 20 beneficials, many of which will be covered in this class.

Register
Experience the Secret Life of Bees American River Ranch
  • Sat., May 9, 2020 9:15am

Experience the secret life of honey bees at American River Ranch. You will learn how bees are vital to our environment and how they live together and function. After talking about how bees and pollination help the farm, you will put on a beekeeping suit and see the bees up close and personal inside the hive. You will see worker bees doing their jobs, how honey is made, the famous waggle dance and maybe even spot the queen bee. Then you’ll enjoy a sample of honey made by the bees you just visited. Suggested ages 8 years and older. All participants must wear closed-toe shoes, long pants and socks that cover their ankles. Avoid wearing any heavily scented skin or hair products. 

Register
Permaculture Design Principles American River Ranch
  • Sat., May 16, 2020 9:00am

Permaculture uses nature’s design to grow food, fuel, fiber and medicine for our needs while also enhancing the land at the same time. You will get a crash course on how and why permaculture works, and then learn how to establish a food forest garden that is the best physical manifestation of nature. This class is lecture and hands-on.

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Introduction to Urban Backyard Beekeeping American River Ranch
  • Sat., May 23, 2020 1:00pm

Are you planning to start your first backyard beehive this spring? Or are you just curious about urban beekeeping? Do you consider yourself a beginner beekeeper and want to learn new strategies or brush up on your beekeeping skills? This workshop will cover the basics for a successful start to backyard beekeeping.

View Details
Free Worm Composting Workshop American River Ranch
  • Wed., June 3, 2020 6:00pm

Let’s turn our food and plant waste into something useful. Composting, or the act of breaking down organic matter, is a valuable tool for sustainable living. In this free class, we’ll discuss the basics of how to start, maintain, and harvest compost for your containers, gardens, yards, or community green spaces. This class is in partnership with Republic Services. All participants will be entered into a raffle to win prizes.

Register
Seed Saving American River Ranch
  • Sat., June 6, 2020 9:00am

Find out how to save seeds from your favorite crops. We will discuss the importance of seed saving, how to care for the plants to assure a good seed supply and how to create the right environment to save seeds. You will learn the difference between open pollinated plants and hybrid seeds, and will get hands-on experience cleaning and storing seeds.

Register
Intermediate Urban Backyard Beekeeping American River Ranch
  • Sat., June 27, 2020 9:00am

This workshop is designed for backyard beekeepers interested in learning intermediate level skills. No prerequisite knowledge is required, but it will be more advanced than an introductory level workshop. We will have a short lecture and group learning style introduction to topics and then an open hive inspection with practical, hands-on skills to move you to the next level of beekeeping. We will focus on common beekeeping practices, including integrated pest management strategies in an urban setting and skills to make sure you know all of your options to keep your bees healthy. Even if you have read a few books, taken some other classes or already started keeping bees, this interactive workshop will have a lot to offer you.

Register

Herbal Studies

We offer both individual herbal classes and longer courses, such as the Family Herbalist Course Beginners Program. the Intermediate Herbalist Courses Part A and B and the Homegrown Herbalism Course. Students will learn how to identify, grow and use herbs for health and wellness. Most classes are experiential with tasting, smelling, and hands-on activities with herbs. Topics include: basics of herbal medicine; the art of herbal medicine making (beginning and intermediate); the spring, autumn and winter herbal; growing medicinal and culinary herbs; herbal first aid; herb walks along the American River Parkway; introduction to aromatherapy and more.

Herbal Studies Upcoming Classes

Event Venue Date Description
Family Herbalist Course Beginners Program 2020 American River Ranch
  • Sat., April 11, 2020 10:00am

This course is postponed due to the Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic and in adherence to our government’s health and safety guidelines. Thank you for your patience and understanding. Join Candis and her team in learning the basics of Western Herbology while integrating it with Ayurvedic and Traditional Chinese medicine. This six-month course will include medicine-making, plant ID, how to treat acute ailments, use of tonic herbs and food for strengthening vitality, as well as how to harvest local herbs for medicine. You will learn about your own constitutional needs and ways to balance yourself for better health and well-being. This program will include herb walks around the farm and the American River. There will be lots of tasting, smelling, and hands-on experience with the herbs!

Register
Growing Medicinal and Culinary Herbs American River Ranch
  • Tue., April 14, 2020 5:30pm

This class is postponed due to the Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic and in adherence to our government’s health and safety guidelines. Thank you for your patience and understanding. Herbs in the home garden can add flavor to your meals, home remedies to your medicine cabinet, and beauty, diversity and beneficial insect habitat to your landscape. This hands-on class offers instructions for growing an array of herbs, and tips for harvesting and using what you grow.

View Details
Homegrown Herbalism Course American River Ranch
  • Tue., April 21, 2020 5:30pm

This course is postponed due to the Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic and in adherence to our government’s health and safety guidelines. Thank you for your patience and understanding. This course is an opportunity to explore herbal medicine from soil to teacup. Participants will learn the basics of planning, starting, and maintaining an herb garden, plant harvesting and storage, safe and sustainable collection of wild medicinal plants, making home remedies for use throughout the year, and the specific applications for several medicinal plants. This is primarily a hands-on, outdoor course, with lecture woven in.

Register
Adaptogens: Herbs for Stress Relief and Resilience American River Ranch
  • Tue., May 26, 2020 5:30pm

Adaptogens are herbs highly prized for their use in creating greater vitality and resilience to stress, illness, and exhaustion. These herbs have long traditions of being used in this way, and modern science is helping us to understand some of the mechanisms of their action. This class provides an overview of several adaptogens and their specific characteristics and uses, along with recipes and samplings of herbal preparations highlighting adaptogenic herbs.

Register
The Summer Herbal American River Ranch
  • Tue., June 9, 2020 5:30pm

Each season brings a particular set of conditions that may challenge our well-being, but we can address these concerns with herbal remedies, foods, and good habits. This class will cover the challenges of the summer months, from staying comfortably cool and hydrated, to skin irritations and first-aid concerns. Many techniques and recipes will be offered, along with samples of tasty herbal preparations and take-home items for your summer wellness kit.

Register
Preparing Herbal Remedies for Colds, Flu & Infections American River Ranch
  • Wed., June 10, 2020 10:00am

We will discuss the various remedies used for centuries around the world to treat common colds, flu and infections. It is important to have the remedies made and ready to use when an illness strikes. We will make remedies, taste various herbs and practice the protocol for when someone is ill with these conditions.

Register

Culinary Arts

Our culinary arts program features a variety of classes that teach adults the basic cooking skills to prepare fresh, whole foods into delicious, healthy meals. The Art of Home Cooking are seasonally-themed classes that inspire you to cook from scratch using basic techniques and wholesome ingredients. Topics include: soups and broths, sauces, greens, pizza, braising, stir-frying and grilling. The Meal Prep Hands-on Cooking workshops are offered monthly where the students prepare the components of seasonal recipes for the upcoming week’s meals (different types of proteins, a myriad of vegetables, a healthy grain and sauces). Participants leave the workshops with containers of prepped ingredients, a plan for the week and a selection of building-block recipes. The Garden to Pantry Food Preservation classes are a combination of hands-on and demonstration style. Students learn a variety of ways to preserve food utilizing the seasonal produce grown on the farm: canning, dehydration and fermentation.

Culinary Arts Upcoming Classes

Event Venue Date Description
Asian Noodles American River Ranch
  • Sat., April 25, 2020 10:00am

This class is cancelled due to the Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic and in adherence to our government’s health and safety guidelines. Thank you for your patience and understanding. Everyone loves a bowl of noodles! Learn to make 4 different Asian recipes that are authentic and tasty: Pad Thai with tofu, vegetable chow mein, Vietnamese spring rolls with noodles and shrimp and beef chow fun.

Register
Hands-On 3 Course Plant Based Dinner American River Ranch
  • Sat., May 9, 2020 3:30pm

In this hands-on cooking class, we will work together to cook up a delicious 3 course meal including a seasonal soup, main course and dessert, utilizing as much produce from the farm as possible. We will work on teams for each component of the meal and you will have a chance to share the meal with your fellow cooks on the patio before you head home with a happy belly. Please bring your favorite chef’s knife if you have one. Chef Stephanie is a culinary professional with over 2 decades of experience in restaurant and catering kitchens, including 6 years at San Francisco’s best vegan restaurant, Millennium.

Register
The Future of Cooking American River Ranch
  • Sat., May 23, 2020 11:00am

Free Class in Partnership with SMUD
Join Chef Dave Nelson from Industry Cooking Classes for a fun, interactive professional cooking demonstration using the newest kitchen technology! Learn to cook anything with fundamental techniques for stovetop cooking – sauté, pan fry, sear, sweat, simmer and boil.

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Honing Your Knife Skills American River Ranch
  • Thu., May 28, 2020 6:00pm

Better knife skills will improve your cooking beyond measure. There’s so much more than just slicing and dicing, and with proper knife techniques, prepping will be easier and quicker. In this hands-on class, you’ll learn the basics, plus simple and beautiful garnishes. Learn how to choose a good knife without spending a fortune, and how to keep your knives sharp and well cared for. You’ll leave with recipes and a bounty of chopped produce ready to turn into dinners for the week. Please bring a chef’s knife, a paring knife and a cutting board to class.

Register
FREE Make Your Own Solar Cooker American River Ranch
  • Sat., June 6, 2020 1:30pm

You will be surprised how easy it is to prepare delicious food with only the power of the sun. Join us for this family friendly class in which we will explore the different types of solar cookers, share some of the best solar cooking recipes, and provide you materials to build your own solar cookers (limit 2 per family).

Register
Hands-On Seasonal Soups and Salads American River Ranch
  • Sat., June 13, 2020 3:30pm

In this hands-on cooking class, we will work together to cook up delicious cooling seasonal soups and salads, utilizing as much produce from the farm as possible. We will work on teams to produce each recipe and you will have a chance to share the meal with your fellow cooks on the patio before you head home with a happy belly. Please bring your favorite chef’s knife if you have one. Chef Stephanie is a culinary professional with over 2 decades of experience in restaurant and catering kitchens, including 6 years at San Francisco’s best vegan restaurant, Millennium.

Register
Summer Grilling American River Ranch
  • Wed., June 24, 2020 6:30pm

Grill master Dio will show you everything you need to know to up your grilling game. Learn to make spice rubbed grilled chicken with charred tomato salsa, grilled shrimp with avocado cucumber relish, baby back ribs with honey mustard BBQ sauce, grilled vegetable and goat cheese salad, and grilled peaches with vanilla bean ice cream for dessert. You will sample each dish prepared.

Register

Nature and Environment

We offer bird walks along the American River Parkway where you will learn how to identify through sight and sound a variety of resident birds. The walks are ideal for beginner to intermediate birdwatchers. Herbal studies instructors lead herb walks along the American River Parkway to show students how to identify and use over 25 plants for food and medicine. Beekeeping classes are offered for the aspiring urban backyard beekeeper to those who are serious about beekeeping as a profession. All of our nature and environment classes are experiential, emphasizing our connection to the natural world and how to become stewards of the land.

Nature and Environment Upcoming Classes

Event Venue Date Description
Family Nature Walk American River Ranch
  • Sat., April 11, 2020 9:15am

This class is postponed due to the Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic and in adherence to our government’s health and safety guidelines. Thank you for your patience and understanding. Join Cliff Hawley for an opportunity to observe what nature has to offer on a walking tour of the American River Ranch. We’ll explore the plants, animals, and relationships that make up the environment of this special place. This walk is family friendly, but recommended for kids 5 and up.

Register
Bird Walk American River Ranch
  • Sat., April 18, 2020 9:15am

This class is cancelled due to the Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic and in adherence to our government’s health and safety guidelines. Thank you for your patience and understanding. Start your morning off with a pleasant walk around American River Ranch. We will experience a variety of resident birds along with winter, migrant, or summer birds depending on the season. Cliff will point out other critters and plant life along the way. This walk is ideal for beginner to intermediate birdwatchers.

Register
Family Nature Walk American River Ranch
  • Sat., May 9, 2020 9:15am

Join Cliff Hawley for an opportunity to observe what nature has to offer on a walking tour of the American River Ranch. We’ll explore the plants, animals, and relationships that make up the environment of this special place. This walk is family friendly, but recommended for kids 5 and up.

Register
Experience the Secret Life of Bees American River Ranch
  • Sat., May 9, 2020 9:15am

Experience the secret life of honey bees at American River Ranch. You will learn how bees are vital to our environment and how they live together and function. After talking about how bees and pollination help the farm, you will put on a beekeeping suit and see the bees up close and personal inside the hive. You will see worker bees doing their jobs, how honey is made, the famous waggle dance and maybe even spot the queen bee. Then you’ll enjoy a sample of honey made by the bees you just visited. Suggested ages 8 years and older. All participants must wear closed-toe shoes, long pants and socks that cover their ankles. Avoid wearing any heavily scented skin or hair products. 

Register
Permaculture Design Principles American River Ranch
  • Sat., May 16, 2020 9:00am

Permaculture uses nature’s design to grow food, fuel, fiber and medicine for our needs while also enhancing the land at the same time. You will get a crash course on how and why permaculture works, and then learn how to establish a food forest garden that is the best physical manifestation of nature. This class is lecture and hands-on.

View Details
Bird Walk American River Ranch
  • Sat., May 16, 2020 9:15am

Start your morning off with a pleasant walk around American River Ranch. We will experience a variety of resident birds along with winter, migrant, or summer birds depending on the season. Cliff will point out other critters and plant life along the way. This walk is ideal for beginner to intermediate birdwatchers.

Register
Introduction to Urban Backyard Beekeeping American River Ranch
  • Sat., May 23, 2020 1:00pm

Are you planning to start your first backyard beehive this spring? Or are you just curious about urban beekeeping? Do you consider yourself a beginner beekeeper and want to learn new strategies or brush up on your beekeeping skills? This workshop will cover the basics for a successful start to backyard beekeeping.

View Details
Introduction to Eco-Printing American River Ranch
  • Sat., May 30, 2020 9:30am

Learn how to create striking prints on silk scarves using beautiful fall leaves! This hands-on class will cover the basics of eco-printing from mordant choices to plant selection; how to roll or fold for optimal prints; steaming versus boiling and more. Come and experience the magic of nature’s colorful designs to reveal anywhere from the coral red shades left by eucalyptus leaves, the pale pink of Japanese maple, or the black tinged prints left from leaves dipped in iron. You will eco-print on two silk scarves to take home for your enjoyment or give as beautifully handcrafted gifts.

Register
Free Worm Composting Workshop American River Ranch
  • Wed., June 3, 2020 6:00pm

Let’s turn our food and plant waste into something useful. Composting, or the act of breaking down organic matter, is a valuable tool for sustainable living. In this free class, we’ll discuss the basics of how to start, maintain, and harvest compost for your containers, gardens, yards, or community green spaces. This class is in partnership with Republic Services. All participants will be entered into a raffle to win prizes.

Register
Family Nature Walk American River Ranch
  • Sat., June 6, 2020 8:15am

Join Cliff Hawley for an opportunity to observe what nature has to offer on a walking tour of the American River Ranch. We’ll explore the plants, animals, and relationships that make up the environment of this special place. This walk is family friendly, but recommended for kids 5 and up.

Register
FREE Make Your Own Solar Cooker American River Ranch
  • Sat., June 6, 2020 1:30pm

You will be surprised how easy it is to prepare delicious food with only the power of the sun. Join us for this family friendly class in which we will explore the different types of solar cookers, share some of the best solar cooking recipes, and provide you materials to build your own solar cookers (limit 2 per family).

Register
Bird Walk American River Ranch
  • Sat., June 13, 2020 8:15am

Start your morning off with a pleasant walk around American River Ranch. We will experience a variety of resident birds along with winter, migrant, or summer birds depending on the season. Cliff will point out other critters and plant life along the way. This walk is ideal for beginner to intermediate birdwatchers.

Register
Intermediate Urban Backyard Beekeeping American River Ranch
  • Sat., June 27, 2020 9:00am

This workshop is designed for backyard beekeepers interested in learning intermediate level skills. No prerequisite knowledge is required, but it will be more advanced than an introductory level workshop. We will have a short lecture and group learning style introduction to topics and then an open hive inspection with practical, hands-on skills to move you to the next level of beekeeping. We will focus on common beekeeping practices, including integrated pest management strategies in an urban setting and skills to make sure you know all of your options to keep your bees healthy. Even if you have read a few books, taken some other classes or already started keeping bees, this interactive workshop will have a lot to offer you.

Register

Natural Arts and Crafts

The joy of succulents are a variety of hands-on workshops that show you how to create beautiful and useful pieces of art made from succulent plants and other natural materials. Class topics include: succulent container gardens; succulents in a wine bottle; decorative succulent pumpkins; succulent terrariums and succulent wreaths. We will be adding woodworking, photography and art classes soon…

Natural Arts and Crafts Upcoming Classes

Event Venue Date Description
Introduction to Eco-Printing American River Ranch
  • Sat., May 30, 2020 9:30am

Learn how to create striking prints on silk scarves using beautiful fall leaves! This hands-on class will cover the basics of eco-printing from mordant choices to plant selection; how to roll or fold for optimal prints; steaming versus boiling and more. Come and experience the magic of nature’s colorful designs to reveal anywhere from the coral red shades left by eucalyptus leaves, the pale pink of Japanese maple, or the black tinged prints left from leaves dipped in iron. You will eco-print on two silk scarves to take home for your enjoyment or give as beautifully handcrafted gifts.

Register

Animal Husbandry

Every year we offer a raising backyard chickens workshop where you will learn how to raise chickens for egg production and soil fertility as well as choosing the right breeds, providing a healthy diet, housing and optimal care for your chickens.

Animal Husbandry Upcoming Classes

There are no listings in this category currently available. Check back soon!

Teacher Training

Growing Together is our teacher training program which supports the Garden in Every School movement, established by Delain Eastin. The goal is to develop sustainable garden programs that will impact campuses through healthy eating, science learning, connection to food and improving student pride in their school. Activities include hands-on workshops and a biannual symposium.

Teacher Training Upcoming Classes

There are no listings in this category currently available. Check back soon!