Day Workshops

Want to learn more about our sustainability practices? We offer a number of half day workshops (usually running about 2 hours) for guests and visitors. These are designed to inspire and re-skill you for a more resilient world.

We have a minimum $100 intake for these classes with the following cost breakdown:

1 person to 4 people: $100 total
5 people or more: $20/person

Want to join us for a delicious farm to table meal? Please add $10 per person.

If you’re interested in a 2-hour farm tour, please see our Tours page. For longer workshops, please see our Workshops page.

Not all workshops are offered all of the time.  Contact us at info@ranchomastatal.com to inquire about or schedule one of the following classes:

Permaculture/Agroforestry

Introduction to Permaculture Principles
Experience the principles of permaculture in action! From starting small to accelerating succession to energy efficient planning we will explore the practical application of these principles around our site.

Plants for the Tropical Homestead
Explore the perennial vegetables, medicinal plants, and trees crops which feed and heal us in the humid tropics.

Plant Propagation
Spend time in our nursery learning the art and science of seed starting and vegetative plant
propagation; including cuttings, layering, and grafting.

Tropical Agroforestry Tour
Walk through the Ranch’s agroforestry systems in order to understand the holistic approach we have taken toward creating a more resilient, place-based, and permanent agriculture.

Soil Fertility Strategies
Learn how we cultivate a healthy soil in our harsh tropical climate. We will focus on biomass species, biochar production, and microoganism cultivation.

Natural Building

Dordango Making- Creating Shiny Clay Spheres
Dorodango means a “happy mud dumpling” in Japanese. These are a traditional learning art form that has been practiced in Japan for centuries. This is a great introduction to natural building that will give you an understanding about how earthen materials work. Students will learn how to polish clay with just a few simple, commonly available tools. And you’ll walk away with a shiny spherical object!

Natural Building Walk and Talk
This 2-3 hour tour of the property, specifically looking at our natural structures, will focus on the experience and knowledge we have of natural building in the tropics. We will look at site assessment, roof and foundation styles, wall building techniques, cost analysis, and building materials and equipment. We can also provide any material sourcing information.

Earthen Building: Hands and Feet Experience
This will be an introduction to earth building and materials. You’ll learn about why we think natural building is important and how it can be applied on different scales and climates. And you’ll get a chance to get your hands and feet dirty! You will participate in one of the current natural building projects on the Ranch and begin to understand what is involved in building a natural home.

Tadelakt: Water Resistant Natural Plaster
Discover how this ancient Moroccan waterproof lime plaster is made and applied. Here at the Ranch we have multiple showers and surfaces that were created using Tadelakt. We will look at some of the Tadelakt examples we have on site, learn how tadelakt plaster is made, and then apply it on a small object which students can take home.

Homesteading

Making Your Own Soap
Learn about basic soap chemistry and how to make your own soap using locally sourced oils and fats.

Sauerkraut and Kimchi in any Climate!
Fermentation is a technique that has been used for thousands of years to preserve food. In this workshop learn how to make your own versions of two classic vegetable ferments—sauerkraut and kimchi. The methods you learn can be applied to many different types of vegetables, in any climate.

Fermenting Vegetables for Health and Nutrition: Techniques in Brining
Live culture fermented foods form a crucial component to a healthy diet and digestive tract. In this class you will learn some of the science and magic behind fermentation, as well as simple techniques for making your own fermented vegetables at home, no matter where you live.

Introduction to Brewing Live-Culture Herbal Sodas
Learn how to brew your own homemade live-culture sodas with local sugars, fruit juices, and herbs! These delicious and healthy sodas are packed with vitamins and minerals, herbal medicines, and probiotics. This class includes your own SCOBY (Symbiotic Colony Of Bacteria and Yeast) to get your own batches going as soon as you get home.

Basic Gluten-Free Herbal Beers
It’s much easier than you thought to brew your own alcohol. Learn the basic principles behind brewing, and how to make simple brews at home with local herbs. You don’t need barley! This class may change your life.

Other

Starting Your Own Permaculture Project
Learn how the Ranch got started, how it has structured its projects and people, and how it has taken on the many challenges of managing a permaculture project in the tropics.

Invisible Structures
Learn about how the Ranch is organized, makes decisions, deals with compensation and governs and organizes itself. Since 2001 Rancho Mastatal has been working to improve on their people systems. This is an opportunity to hear the Ranch story and find out more about their organizational structure.

We also offer longer workshops on many of these same topics.