Hands on Hugelkultur Workshop Facilitated by Michael Pilarski, Ashley Kehl and Gene Eisele

Example of hugelkultur bedsAbout this Event

We will build and plant a hugelkultur as well as examine recently built ones. The workshop will include touring 3 properties with a dozen hugelkulturs built over the last 4 years. From gigantic scale built with excavators to small backyard scale built by hand. This class is ourdoors, be prepared for the weather.

Date And Time

Admission: $50

Buy Tickets

*No one turned away for lack of funds. Sliding Scale Option for those who need it.

*We will send secret meeting address to registrants before the event. The listed address, 10644 Rhody Drive is our Friends of the Trees office. We will meet at a private property in Irondale.


- work gloves

- picnic lunch

- water bottle / thermos


Kids are welcome

What the heck is a Hugelkultur?

Pronounced HOO-ul-culture and meaning hill or mound culture. They have been practiced in German and Eastern European farming for thousands of years and have been adapted for modern-day permaculture gardening.

The main aspect is to pile up rotting forest vegetation including logs into mounds which are then topped off with soil and planted. It is, in effect, a long-term raised-bed. It becomes a high-fertility, well-drained, yet moist, sponge of biological activity. It is particularly appropriate for situations with poor soil, shallow soil (can even be built on pavement), heavy clay soils, waterlogged soils, sand, and areas with high rainfall and fast leaching of nutrients. They can also be used in dry areas. They sequester carbon and can crank out veggies and food for years to come.


MICHAEL “SKEETER” PILARSKI is a life-long student of plants and earth repair. His farming career started in 2nd grade and his organic farming career began in 1972 at age 25. Michael founded Friends of the Trees Society in 1978 and took his first permaculture design course in 1982. Since 1988 he has taught 36 permaculture design courses in the US and abroad. His specialties include earth repair, agriculture, seed collecting, nursery sales, tree planting, fruit picking, permaculture, agroforestry, forestry, ethnobotany, medicinal herb growing, hoeing and wildcrafting. He has hands-on experience with over 1000 species of plants. He is a prolific gathering organizer and likes group singing.