Category Archives: Activities and Events

Visit the UMass Pollinator Garden

You are invited to stop by the UMass Pollinator Garden at the Agricultural Learning Center to see several beautiful plantings that provide habitat and feed for both native and honey bees.  11750779_10102933155145462_1765256323_oThe garden was sponsored by the Massachusetts State Grange and is manged by Professor Stephen Herbert, a faculty member in the Stockbridge School of Agriculture.  Among the many types of plantings on display, I think the butterfly and hummingbird hedgerow is my favorite.


The red flower is Bee Balm, also known as “patriots tea” because it was used as a tea-substitute after the American Colonists dumped British tea in Boston Harbor!

Bees and other pollinators will also be attracted to productive fruit plantings.

11760627_10102933154935882_696450353_o11747510_10102933153748262_892624253_o11721023_10102933152725312_77192501_oIf you have the space, the butterfly and hummingbird seed mix makes a nice looking pasture of wildflowers.

Below is short video of Professor Herbert, welcoming you to the garden!

The garden is located behind the Wysocki House at 911 North Pleasant St. in North Amherst, MA.  You may park in the Wysocki parking lot and walk back toward the field.  Be sure and say hello and ask questions from the students and faculty who are often working on the site!


UMass at the Amherst Sustainability Festival

Thanks to all the students who contributed to the many educational booths that were part of the Amherst Sustainability Festival.  The Stockbridge School of Agriculture was well-represented!


Among the UMass groups participating were:

UMass Permaculture


The Stockbridge Food for All Garden


The Amherst Schools Garden Project

Amherst School GArdens Poster 2015 (2)

Spiritual Ecology and Regenerative Systems Initiative

SERSI (2)ECO 597SE – Spiritual & Environmental Sustainability Class


The UMass Beekeeping Club


It was great to see so many students active in their local community!

Sustainable Food Guide produced by UMass students

There was a celebration in the Cape Cod Lounge at UMass on October 25 celebrating the introduction of the new Sustainable Food Guide.  Great music and local food were shared by many!

Bicycle powered music!

The UMass Permaculture Initiative!

Pick up the Food Resource Guide!  (and please ‘like us’ here)!

One of the co-sponsors of this event was the Stockbridge School of Agriculture’s  Community Food Systems class taught by Catherine Sands and offered by the coolest major on the planet:

 UMass Sustainable Food and Farming

UMass Highlights Cooperative Businesses and Agriculture

Join us for an educational event in celebration of working together in the Pioneer Valley, and beyond. Come learn more about the exciting things that have been going on during the International Year of Co-operatives, from student run initiatives to local businesses collaborating to help change the food system.

This event will present an opportunity to learn about new programs at UMass while making connections with likeminded people throughout the region.

Attendees are invited to enjoy snacks from local farms and co-ops, listen to live music performed by the Ephemeral String Band, see inspiring movie clips, and listen to short “lightning talks” from people inspired by working together!

For information or to arrange to table at the event, please contact Rebekah Hanlon here.  And please tell us you are coming at our Facebook page!

We hope to see you there!

Co-sponsored by:

  • The UMass Stockbridge School of Agriculture
  • UMass Economics Department
  • UMass Co-operative Enterprise Collaborative
  • UMass Student Run Businesses
  • The Neighboring Food Co-op Association
  • The Valley Alliance of Worker Co-operatives


Stockbridge Students Volunteer at North Amherst Farm Fest

Thanks to the many Stockbridge School of Agriculture students who showed up to volunteer at the annual North Amherst Harvest Festival at Simple Gifts Farm.

It was a beautiful day and hundreds of local community members joined us to enjoy the music and sunshine.

Apples were donated by the UMass Cold Spring Orchard in Belchertown.

Stockbridge students cut and pressed the apples and shared the fresh apple juice with kids and adults.

The kids enjoyed helping to work the apple press.

The apple press was loaned to us by the Common School in Amherst.

Several of the big kids helped out too!

Thanks so much to the Amherst Common School, the UMass Cold Spring Orchard, and the Stockbridge School of Agriculture for contributing to the success of the 2012 North Amherst Harvest Festival.

Yes Farms Yes Food

Adam Barnard, who worked with me as a teaching assistant in my Sustainable Living class at UMass, created this Yes Farms Yes Food sticker as positive version of the “No Farms No Food” sticker.  In this video he talks about where the idea came from.


Adam shares his vision with the world through his own business Local Harmony:

We work to provide respectful land stewardship services to benefit the community, the earth and all its creatures. Integrating years of experience and knowledge in food production, landscape design and installation, tree-care and herbal medicine, we offer a variety of services that empower people through meaningful connection with the land.

We help raise awareness and understanding of local agriculture, health and nutrition topics through seasonally inspired workshops and classes.

You can learn more about Adam and his work at Local   To prepare for careers such as the one chosen by Adam, take a look at the UMass Bachelor of Sciences degree in Sustainable Food and Farming.   Graduating seniors in SFF will be sporting our new tee shirt this summer!


UMass Permaculture Project gains national recognition

The UMass Permaculture Project is one of 15 finalists (from 1000+ nominees) for the White House Campus Champions of  Change Challenge.  The top five vote getters will be invited to an event at the White House. They will also be featured by mtvU and MTV Act and be given the opportunity to host an episode of mtvU’s signature program, “The Dean’s List.” Please vote here to make UMass one of the 5 selected to visit the White House. 

“All Across America, college and university students are helping our country out-innovate, out-educate, and out-build the rest of the world,” said President Obama. “I hope this challenge shines a light on their efforts, and inspires Americans of all ages to get involved in their communities.”

The deadline to cast your vote is Saturday, March 3rd at 11:59 p.m.