True Love and Restoration

And thanks for the rain!
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Arid Land Restoration

June 13, 2015
10 to 4

Learn to read the unique landscape of the arid Southwest! With some attention to deposit patterns of soil and organic material and wild plant indicators, you can determine storm water flow areas that nourish the land, and ones that dehydrate it and create erosion. We will tour the ecological restoration projects on Ampersand’s site, discuss the reasons for each design, and observe success rates.

Learn to think like a watershed! We will get hands on experience constructing grade control rock structures that help calm the flood waters as they pass through the landscape.  This way we can harvest these strong floodwaters rather than watching the land wash away. This class will give you an introduction for healing degraded landscapes through mulching, seeding, and creating erosion control and water harvesting structures that create microcimates for moisture and vegetative growth.

We will tour Ampersand’s largest and most important land restoration project on site.
$60 (discounts available) to register send an email to

Our Summer Schedule:

Discounts Available!

May 24  Sustainable Kitchens and Solar Cooking

May 31  High Desert Gardening

June 6  Earth, Straw, and Salvage Building

June 13  Arid Land Restoration

June 27  Rain Harvesting and Greywater Systems

July 11  Open House and Intern Presentations

True Love and Restoration

Recently I was asked to give a talk on the subject of love. Strange as it may seem, the first love I turn to is the love bunch grasses. They hold the soil together on the hills of my home terrain.

The New Mexico feather grass has one big seed with a really sharp point and a long feathered thread attached to the top. As the seed ripens and dries, the thread, sometimes 6 inches long coils and creates a spiraled feather. The grass seed detaches from its perch and floats away to a bare patch of ground. The sharp end of the seed drops to the ground. The spiral feather catches the wind and winds around in circles, drilling the seed into the Earth. It’s perfect and beautiful. This is what I love.

I have a great love for the body of the Earth, her crevices and critters, and for the dance of interdependence; the ritual of transformation and harmony throughout her oceans and landscapes.

Many people have lots of passions. Me, I really just have this one. My love of the living being of the Earth.

I have this memory of when I was seventeen years old, interviewing for colleges and being asked what I saw myself doing in the future, what I wanted to study. I can still see in my mind the vision I had of this ditch in the ground. I was looking down at a gash of bare soil. I knew that it needed healing, but I didn’t know what the problem was or what the solution would be...(read more of this blog post and about the internship)


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