Horn Farm Happenings – February 03, 2023

Rebuilding at Horn Farm

Since the night of October 21, 2021, our team has been working hard, adapting to our new reality, revitalizing our programs, and planning for reconstruction. Over the past several months, HFC’s Rebuild Task Force has been digging deep into the design process with Murphy & Dittenhafer, Lewis Contractors, and 7group.

The schematic design phase is complete and we are nearing the close of design development. If our process stays on track, we will be ready to start construction on the farmhouse this spring!

The rebuild will feature a complete renovation of the interior—including a large classroom downstairs and office spaces upstairs to carry out our mission. We will use simple, natural materials secured from local sources. In addition to preserving the historic character of the exterior, we will rebuild the farmhouse with the highest levels of energy efficiency inside and offset all of the building’s energy use with a powerful solar generation system.

Our timeline and design activities are:

  • October 2022 – December 2022 (6 weeks) – schematic design (completed)
  • January 2023-February 2023 (4 weeks) – design development and early cost estimation
  • February 2023 – March 2023 (6 weeks) – development of construction documents
  • April 2023 (3 weeks) – bidding and pricing

As the project ramps up and we get closer to the reality of rebuilding, we will continue to share our progress with you. We set up a new webpage just for that purpose!

You can find more information at rebuildhornfarm.com


Ecological Core Immersion

Are you interested in expanding your ecological knowledge? 

Join us for a holistic primer on ecology, reciprocity, and preparing ourselves to be lifelong stewards of the natural world. The Ecological Core Immersion is a stand-alone 4-week course that is part of our 16-week spring training programs!

Topics include (and are not limited to):

  • Basic ecology and natural cycles.
  • Historical land uses and misuses.
  • Considerations for regenerative land design.
  • Disturbance-based land management.
  • Physical movement training for field and forest work.

Join us for the Horn Farm Center’s unique Ecological Core Immersion series starting on Monday, February 13th 8am-4pm.

Click here to learn more and register. 


What Learning Adventures Do You Want to Explore at Horn Farm?

As we look to expand and diversify our programs this year, we want your input! Let us know what kinds of classes or workshops you’d like to see in the future at the Horn Farm. Give us your input by taking a short, 3-5 minute survey.

Click here to give us your feedback!


community-gardens 2019

Gardening in Community 

Registration for Horn Farm Center’s Community Garden Plots are now open!

One of our oldest programs, the Community Gardens at the Horn Farm Center offer local growers the opportunity to cultivate fresh, chemical-free food on prime farmland in the company of other enthusiastic and dedicated gardeners.

Garden plots are rented annually from April 1st through October 31. Each plot measures approximately 20 x 20 feet. Plots are assigned on a “First Come, First Served” basis.

Click here to Register.


Rooting & Listening

Let this Black History Month be a reminder of that powerful pairing of actions. In rooting and listening, we begin not only to heal our relationship with nature, but to uproot racism in our communities.

We’re gratefully humbled and inspired by the leading-edge land stewardship spearheaded by Black leaders across the country: folks reviving broken ecosystems, rebuilding biodiversity, and reclaiming traditions and foodways based in caretaking relationship with the land. Rooted in our own vision of helping land thrive in community, we listen to their stories with reverence and resolve while reflecting on how we can better deliver on the whole force of our mission.

This weekend, take some time to check out this recent article on the Shelterwood Collective and other BIPOC-led environmental orgs. We also invite you to check out and support local and regional black-led environmental organizations and businesses, including Discerning Eye Community AgricultureThe Bridge Eco-Village, and Backyard Basecamp.

“A big piece of what we’re trying to do here stems from the perspective that ecosystems are not healthy unless human communities are thoroughly woven into their fabric. It’s about nurturing a community of land tenders who are learning to be in relationship with one another, with themselves, and with the land around them.” – Nikola Alexandre, Shelterwood Co-creator


More Bread Baking Classes!

Back by popular dough-mand, we’re hosting another beginner bread baking workshop in the Horn Farm Summer Kitchen!

Don’t miss your chance to try your hand at simple-yet-versatile white and wheat breads. Thursday, February 16th from 6 to 8pm, we’ll explore the ingredients and practice rustic techniques for home baking that nourishes the body and spirit while acting gently on the land.

Spaces are limited on account of the size of our Summer Kitchen, so reserve yours today!

Click here for Bread Baking Classes

Horn Farm Happenings – January 20, 2023

What Do You Want to Learn This Year?

Our mission is to foster learning. Each year, our talented team of program coordinators, instructors, and land stewards work together to design an increasingly diverse schedule of classes, workshops, and trainings.

We teach what we know from the land and we partner with other regenerative practitioners to foster learning at the Horn Farm Center. We already have a number of exciting new programs scheduled for this spring. However, our goal is to provide a wide variety of learning experiences that will inspire connections to the land.

As we look to expand and diversify our programs this year, we want your input! Let us know what kinds of classes or workshops you’d like to see in the future at the Horn Farm. Give us your input by taking a short, 3-5 minute survey.

Click here to give us your feedback!


 

A Day of Service & Community at the Farm

A willow branch can be planted in the ground and from it, a new tree will grow in its place. Through its tolerant nature, willow can withstand strong winds, wet conditions, and adverse weather. Willow’s ability to grow and survive is powerfully symbolic of how we can be adaptable to thrive in challenging circumstances.

This Monday, on Martin Luther King Day of Service, we were reminded of our community resilience as we worked with over 15 volunteers in our willow beds. With the help of this superstar crew of volunteers, we exceeded our coppicing goals, laid three new lengths of ground cover, and assembled a dozen brushwood bundles for use in our forest streams.

Taking from what we learned during our recent visit to Foggy Blossom Farm, we’re making plans to plant two more willow rows between our current rows using live stakes (cuttings that will root self-sufficiently). By tightening spacing, these new rows will naturally encourage the upright growth patterns characteristic of basketry plants. They’ll also allow easier management for our land steward crew, since compact arrangements like this help mitigate weed pressure. For the land, more perennials mean more roots mean more stable, healthy, biodynamic soils.

As for the brushwood bundles, these tight assortments of branches will be put to use along eroded creek corridors throughout our wild spaces. They will create natural berms helping to slow water, catch sediment, and prevent downstream pooling and flooding. This is a prime example of using materials sourced from the land to aid in its own restoration–of giving back to once-neglected waterways as a “thank you” for the weaving rods we were gifted in abundance this December.


A Few Spots Left: HFC Training Programs

There are still a few openings available in this spring’s Land Steward and Ecological Gardener Training Programs, so we’re extending the application deadline to Thursday, February 2nd.

If you’ve been considering applying, now is your chance!

Whether you are exploring a career or simply looking to expand your knowledge and skills, all students will gain a deep understanding of regenerative practices.

You don’t need experience to participate! Become a proactive advocate for earth care and apply for our remaining spots today:

Join us this year for a learning adventure at the Horn Farm Center!

Click here to learn more about Training Programs


Early-Bird CSA Registration Closes Soon!

Now through January 31st, 2023, we’re accepting early-bird registrations for the Horn Farm CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) program.

For 20 weeks from June to October, CSA members receive a weekly box of seasonal, organic produce grown by the Horn Farm and our local partners. Fill your plate with local flavor while supporting small-scale agriculture and the Horn Farm’s land-healing mission!

Click here to Register for the CSA


Ecological Core Immersion

Are you interested in expanding your ecological knowledge? 

Join us for a holistic primer on ecology, reciprocity, and preparing ourselves to be lifelong stewards of the natural world. The Ecological Core Immersion is a stand-alone 4-week course that is part of our 16-week spring training programs!

Topics include (and are not limited to):

  • Basic ecology and natural cycles.
  • Historical land uses and misuses.
  • Considerations for regenerative land design.
  • Disturbance-based land management.
  • Physical movement training for field and forest work.

Join us for the Horn Farm Center’s unique Ecological Core Immersion series starting on Monday, February 13th 8am-4pm.


Image: Depiction of the Columbia Bridge over the Susquehanna River by William Henry Bartlett (circa. 1850).

New Program Series: The Land & Peoples of the Lower Susquehanna Valley

Would you like to know more about how Indigenous people lived on this land for thousands of years before European settlers arrived? If so, this course is for you!

In four two-hour sessions, this new series will take you on a fast-paced tour through the geological, archaeological, and historical past to reach a deeper appreciation of the land we live on and the people who have left their marks on it. The sessions will be run in seminar style, and participants will be invited to share their own stories, insights, and local knowledge.

Each session will be led by HFC Board Member, Dr. Ed Wilson, who will be accompanied by regional experts with specialized knowledge about topics of interest. Program topics include:

  • Origins of the Landscape
  • The Indigenous Peoples & Their Land
  • European Settlement and the Collision of Worlds
  • The Contemporary Landscape and Its Challenges

Join us for “The Land & Peoples of the Lower Susquehanna Valley” program series starting on Thursday, March 9th at 6pm.

Click here to Register.

Horn Farm Happenings – January 6, 2023

 

Gratitude & Growth in the New Year

At the start of each new year, we look forward with hope and optimism to the 365 days to come. At the farm, we do so with gratitude: for the hard work of our board and staff – and especially, for the dedication and support of our program participants, volunteers, and donors.

Thank you for being a friend of the farm last year, and for helping us continue our mission! In 2023, we are planning for another year of learning, growth, and community. Together, we will:

As for 2022, we made great strides towards acheiving our strategic goals. We grew our staff, enhanced our programs, and overcame a multitude of challenges. You will learn more about last year’s accomplishments in our upcoming Annual Report.

We look forward to the next 365 days with you – as we continue to learn and grow together. Cheers to another year of good friends, hard work, and a mission that matters.

See you at the farm!

Sincerely,

Alexis Campbell, Executive Director


Become a Beekeeper This Year

A few spots remain in the introductory track of the 2023 Beekeeper Training Program! Curious about how you can support a hive at home? Don’t miss your opportunity to train with apiarist, Mark Gingrich at the Horn Farm.

This two-year program meets monthly, starting January 18th, and provides both biological foundations and hands-on experience for raising honey bees. At the end of your first year of training you will take home your own bees and beebox. No prior knowledge of bees required–just an interest in exploring a new backyard hobby!

Click here to Register


A Few Spots Left: HFC Training Programs

Immerse in new skills this new year! The Horn Farm’s training programs are your invitation to reimagine our relationship with the natural world, with hands-on practice in helping wildlife and natural spaces flourish.

Best of all, our programs welcome all experience levels.

You don’t need any prior knowledge or training–just curiosity and a passion for connecting with nature!

Want to get started on your journey?–the spring training programs are your doorstep to becoming a lifelong advocate and caretaker for the planet, with skills you can bring to your everyday life.

Applications close in two weeks! Learn more about these empowering programs and apply today:

Join us next year for a learning adventure at the Horn Farm Center!

Click here to learn more about Training Programs


In the News: Mind, Body, Detox Podcast

by Firefly Hollow Wellness in York, PA

We want to create that spark that leads to some sort of transformation in people’s lives and helps them feel connected and comfortable and happy in the outdoors, because there’s a lot of work to do. We want people to feel so strongly about nature and our wild spaces that they’ll want to steward those spaces as well …”

Our gratitude goes out to Kara Lovehart and Firefly Hollow Holistic Wellness Center for giving us a platform to share our work! Listen in to hear from Executive Director, Alexis Campbell about regenerative agriculture, the importance of soil health, the value of nature connection, and the many ways we demonstrate earth renewal at the Horn Farm Center.

The Mind Body Detox podcast is available on Apple, Spotify, and fireflyhollowwellness.com/podcast/

Listen to Episode 33: Regenerative Agriculture

 


Early-Bird CSA Registration Open

Now through January 31st, 2023, we’re accepting early-bird registrations fort the Horn Farm CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) program.

For 20 weeks from June to October, CSA members receive a weekly box of seasonal, organic produce grown by the Horn Farm and our local partners. Fill your plate with local flavor while supporting small-scale agriculture and the Horn Farm’s land-healing mission!

Click here to Register for the CSA


Volunteers Needed: Final Willow Harvest

We are seeking daytime volunteers to help us complete our second annual willow tree coppicing! Community workdays are scheduled for January 16th & 17th.

Coppicing is the process of pruning a tree or shrub to ground level in order to stimulate the growth of shoots and provide a sustainable supply of agroforestry products year to year. This winter, we are harvesting willow shoots for basketry, kindling for biochar, and live stakes.

Tasks will vary depending on our progress and volunteer counts. These can include: pruning willow branches with hand pruners (down to stump level); sorting harvested branches by height and thickness; bundling and tagging prepared branches; laying down ground pack; and carrying branches and branch bundles.

Let us know if you can join us!

Click here to Volunteer


New Program Series: The Land & Peoples of the Lower Susquehanna Valley

Are you interested in the natural forces and human activities that have shaped our unique region? If so, this course is for you!

In four two-hour sessions, this new series will take you on a fast-paced tour through the geological, archaeological, and historical past to reach a deeper appreciation of the land we live on and the people who have left their marks on it. The sessions will be run in seminar style, and participants will be invited to share their own stories, insights, and local knowledge.

Each session will be led by HFC Board Member, Dr. Ed Wilson, who will be accompanied by regional experts with specialized knowledge about topics of interest. Program topics include:

  • Origins of the Landscape
  • The Indigenous Peoples & Their Land
  • European Settlement and the Collision of Worlds
  • The Contemporary Landscape and Its Challenges

Join us for “The Land & Peoples of the Lower Susquehanna Valley” program series  starting on Thursday, March 9th at 6pm.

Click here to Register.


Upcoming Classes & Workshops:

January 19, 2023: Bread Baking: Sourdough
January 28, 2023: Winter Plant & Tree Identification
February 5, 2023: February Foraging Walk
February 25, 2023: Maple Sugaring
February 25, 2023: Maple Sugaring
March 9, 2023: Land & Peoples Series: Origins of the Landscape
March 16, 2023: Flatbread
March 23, 2023: Land & People Series: The Indigenous
March 25, 2023: Hugelkultur Workshop
April 6, 2023: Backyard Composting
April 6, 2023: Land & People Series: European Settlement
April 8, 2023: Regenerative Foraging
April 13, 2023: Spring Garden Prep & Planning
April 15-16, 2023: Foraging Foundations Weekend
April 20, 2023: Backyard Composting
April 20, 2023: Land & People Series: The Contemporary Landscape
May 11, 2023: Understanding Your Garden Q&A
June 10-11, 2023: Foraging Foundations Weekend
June 15, 2023: Gardener’s Guide to Weeds
July 6, 2023: Insect Identification for Gardeners
September 9-10, 2023: Foraging Foundations Weekend

Save the Dates: 2023 Events:

May 4-5, 2023: Give Local York
May 7, 2023: 11th Annual Plant Sale
September 23 & 24, 2023: 19th Annual York County Pawpaw Festival

2023 Training Programs- Applications Close Soon!

Land Steward Training Program
Ecological Gardener Training Program
Beekeeper Training Program

Volunteer Events:
January 16, 2023: Willow Harvesting Work Day
January 17, 2023: Willow Harvesting Work Day