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Veterans in Ag: Learning to Work with Mushrooms & Fungi

Tuesday, April 9, 2019 at 10:00am to 3:00pm

EquiCenter Farm 3247 Rush Mendon Rd, Honeoye Falls, NY 14472

Farm OPS, a project of the Cornell Small Farms Program, is providing series of training workshops throughout 2019 for veterans interested in agriculture. Veterans interested in these programs must be enrolled at a VA facility in NYS (VISN2 area). 

Mushrooms and their Fungi relatives interconnect all other systems we are dependent on. We are part of a diverse web of life, those connections rely on each other for survival. They are the hidden life force of cells working together to connect life, restore balance, nourish and cultivate healthy systems.

In this course you will journey through the complex web and ancient world of mushrooms. Explore how they grow in nature and then how they nurture us in return — forging our immune systems, circulation, anti-inflammation and more. Explore the many ways we can integrate Fungi into our regimens and systems. Mushrooms and their underground network of cells called mycelium are the unsung champions often missing from our studies, culture and horticulture practices. Learn the basics to recognizing them in the field, and explore different ways to grow them for food and medicine. Gain skills to get started incorporating mushrooms in your kitchen, garden and medicine cabinet.

Everyone goes home with an Oyster Mushroom starter to begin growing their own mushrooms on waste streams and more.

This workshop will be led by Olga Tzogas, owner and operator of Smugtown Mushrooms in Rochester, NY.

Olga's journey with Fungi and plants started over ten years ago. Working with these allies by foraging in both urban and more wild settings, and developing skills to identify for food and medicine. In 2011, Smugtown Mushrooms was established because there was a need for mushrooms and growing supplies, workshops, events and community based science in her area. While continuously learning more and embracing the never-ending, unlocked potential of mushrooms and fungi. Olga teaches workshops about wild mushroom identification, medicinal mushrooms, biology, and mushroom cultivation. She was a core organizer for the 2016 Radical Mycology Convergence and the MycoSymbiotics Festival from 2015-17 and helped establish the first ever New Moon Mycology Summit in 2018. Recently over the past few years, she has been offering intimate guided journeys through the more feral regions of her ancestral homeland of Greece, focusing on the mushrooms, plants, natural history and the culture that weave through the different bioregions.

This workshop will be held at the EquiCenter Farm, and lunch is provided. 

It is recommended that students arrive around 9:30 a.m. to get coffee, tea and snacks, and get checked-in and settled before the class begins.

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