MEDIA ALERT: Plant the Pavement! Urban Ag Community Workshop May 3-4

Building just and sustainable models of food production for a healthy and hunger-free community

WHAT: Plant the Pavement!  A two-day weekend workshop taught by MacArthur Genius Will Allen and other educators from Growing Power and Inter-Faith Food Shuttle. Sessions include mushroom production, year-round production of microgreens, compost/vermiculture, aquaponics, and hoop house construction. 

WHEN: May 3 & 4, 2014. Sessions run 8:30am-5:30pm both Saturday and Sunday [A workshop for students and educators at Longview School will take place on Friday, May 2.]

WHERE: Inter-Faith Food Shuttle’s Urban Farm at the Hoke Street Training Center, 500 Hoke St. in Southeast Raleigh. 

WHO: Open to anyone who is interested in learning more about the sustainable production of healthy food, whether on a home, business, or a community scale. No previous experience with agriculture is necessary. 

WHY:  The knowledge of how to grow food is an important step toward developing a locally-owned Community Food System that builds self-sufficiency and community power. The more we understand about growing and preparing food, the healthier we are, and the more control we have over our food sources—making healthy food accessible for all.   


Interviews with Will Allen are available on-site prior to workshop on Thursday May 1st, as well as during the workshop May 3rd and 4th. Contact Cindy Sink , 919-413-1470 or

“A typical farmer will tell you how many acres he has. I think of productivity per square foot. We earn $5 per square foot in our hoop houses. How many farmers do you think can say that?” - Will Allen, November 10th, 2012, Raleigh, NC

“People are tired of buying and eating food made 6,000 miles away and shipped across the country.microgreens PTP 2012 Farming is changing and a new revolution of doing more with less is on its way. Will Allen has worked very hard to figure out his way of doing things — and has created his own food ecosystem — one we can learn from, and perhaps replicate here." -Neesha Mirchandani, marketing consultant and Plant the Pavement participant.

About Inter-Faith Food Shuttle

Inter-Faith Food Shuttle is a hunger-relief organization employing multiple strategies to end hunger including nutrition education, workforce development, and agricultural training. In late 2011, Inter-Faith Food Shuttle and Longview School partnered to become the newest Regional Outreach Training Center (ROTC) for Growing Power, an internationally recognized urban agriculture organization started by MacArthur Genius Award winner Will Allen.  In 2012, IFFS held its first annual Plant the Pavement! workshop series. Read more about last year's event here.

Upcoming Workshops on the Teaching Farm

An update from Sun Butler, our Farm Educator and Manager on what's going on and what's coming up at the farm:

Swallow Tail Butterflies Infest Food Shuttle Farm Greenhouse Workshop Planned for August 17th

www.richard-seaman.comThis past weekend large numbers of caterpillars were discovered devouring our parsley transplants in the greenhouse. Their distinctive coloring and lack of horns tipped us off that they were not the usual tomato hornworm larvae that we often see in the field. Our resident butterfly expert and incubator farmer Elizabeth Mann was called in. Elizabeth identified the culprits as Swallowtail butterfly larvae who – yes, have a predilection for parsley. Hand-picking the offending future butterflies from our transplants, Elizabeth requisitioned several parsley plants to keep them well fed in rearing boxes until they enter chrysalis in about two weeks.

With butterfly season in full swing out in our fields we thought this would be an excellent time to schedule a workshop on creating butterfly habitat in your garden. Taught by Elizabeth Mann, author of ‘A Study of Butterflies in North America’, you will learn to identify local butterfly species, their preferred food sources and plants you can include in your garden and landscape to encourage them. Check out Elizabeth’s book and reserve a spot at this 1 hour long workshop by emailing Farm Educator Sun Butler

Butterfly Habitat and Rearing with Elizabeth Mann

When: 10 AM Sat. August 17th

Where: IFFS Teaching Farm 4505 Tryon Rd. Raleigh 27606

Workshop Cost :$10 payable day-of.

Some Like It Hot!!! Hot Pepper Sauce Workshop Saturday August 24th at Food Shuttle Teaching Farm

medusahead-bFood Shuttle incubator farmer Mike Carpenter has been spreading delight and pain around the farm lately as he pursues test subjects with plates of peppers cut into tiny slivers urging them “Here! Try this one!.” Some of Mike’s fermented pepper sauces are surprisingly smooth and mild and good sources of lacto-bacillus pro-biotics. Others are being studied as candidates for materials to initiate fusion energy.

On Saturday Aug 24th at 10 AM Mike will share his expertise in pepper farming and beneficial insect conservation and some of his recipes for making his magic pepper sauces. A walk through Mike’s incubator plot is a veritable pepper garden of eating with many strange and wonderful varieties. Across the road we will tour Food Shuttle Teaching Farms’ commercial pepper production under black plastic. If you are going to have a pepper crop in the ground from April until October, you want to have a plan for controlling weeds. Email Farm Educator Sun Butler to reserve your spot.

All Things Peppery with Mike Carpenter

When: 10 AM-11AM Saturday September 14th Where: Food Shuttle Teaching Farm, 4505 Tryon Rd. Raleigh 27606 Workshop Cost: $10 payable day-of.

Time to Plan your Fall Garden!

Fall Harvest of Spinach at the IFFS Teaching Farm

Fall in North Carolina can be the most pleasant of garden seasons. With the first frost most bugs and aggressive weeds enter dormancy. It is not so bloody hot and with a little planning, you can enjoy a wonderful variety of Fall greens right into January! Explore the many healthy and delicious crops that you can grow during our mild autumn months to keep your family’s mouths watering way past Christmas. Join us at Food Shuttle Farms Fall Garden Series August 17th and 24th. Email Farm Educator Sun Butler at to attend either or both.


Planning Your Fall Garden Part 1 with Farmer Sun Butler

When: 11:15 – 12:15 August 17th

Where: Food Shuttle Teaching Farm 4505 Tryon Rd Raleigh 27606 Cost: $10 (or $15 for both Butterfly Habitat and Fall Garden workshops)

Subjects covered include

  • Fall bed preparation and soil fertility,
  • Starting cold weather crops in hot weather conditions
  • Fall varieties – What To Plant
  • Fall Pest and Winter Weed Control

Planning Your Fall Garden Part 2 with Farmer Sun Butler

When: 11:15am – 12:15pm September 14th

Where: Food Shuttle Teaching Farm 4505 Tryon Rd Raleigh 27606

Cost:  $10 ($15 for Peppers and Fall Garden workshops)

Subjects Covered include:

  • Fall/Winter Cover Crops and No-till Vegetable Production
  • Fall/Winter Season Extension – Extend Your Growing Season year-round
  • Fall Lettuce and Microgreens Production
  • Wonderful World of Arugula

2012 Spring Workshop Schedule for IFFS Nutrition, Farms, & Gardens

We’ve planned a great spring full of opportunities to learn and share about growing, cooking and eating healthfully. Please join us as often as you can on the farm and in the gardens to grow our community health and wealth. Everyone is welcome!

 * Please see each workshop description for fees based on instruction materials.  IFFS always provides scholarships and work exchange options to make sure everyone can join us . All proceeds go towards the IFFS Nutrition, Farm & Garden programs.   Please note many workshops request an RSVP.

  • Dig In!

Saturday, March 10th

Marbles Kids Museum, Raleigh

Across Wake County, people are digging into gardening--in their backyards, at schools, churches, and in neighborhoods...just about anywhere they can find some dirt and sun. AHA presents Dig In on March 10 in Raleigh to help gardeners and budding gardeners start and maintain gardens in the Triangle. IFFS YFTP Apprentices will be leading their very own workshop.  Registration is $10, but space is limited so register now at

  • Meredith College 4th Annual Film Feastival: FOOD STAMPED

Sunday, March 25 7-9pm

Meredith College, Jones Hall Auditorium, Raleigh

4th Annual Film Feastival description: The Durham-Chapel Hill Dietetic Association and Meredith College Master of Science in Nutrition Program, and Inter-Faith Food Shuttle are proud to present the 4th Annual Film Feastival - Featuring Food Stamped, with guest panelist, filmmaker Yoav Potash; and a special display of The Hunger Project - A Portrait of Hunger in North Carolina, by photographer Donn Young.

Proceeds benefit Inter-Faith Food Shuttle!

Registration & more information:

  • Seed & Seedling & Scion Swap and Potluck

Saturday, March 17  11am-1pm

 IFFS Teaching Farm, 4505 Tryon Rd, Raleigh

Calling all gardeners! Bring your extra seeds, seedlings, and scion wood from fruit trees, meet new friends, and share a delicious potluck meal at our teaching farm. Tours will be available, please bring your own envelopes/bags for seeds, and your own plate/utensils for lunch.

  • Home Gardening & Beekeeping;  Community Garden Collaborative: Growing Together series

      Sunday, March 18th  1-3:00pm

      Home of Kristin & Joel Bulpit in Cary

To promote sharing urban gardening knowledge and skills, IFFS is working with local experts and educators to offer FREE monthly workshops in community and backyard gardens around Wake County through the Community Garden Collaborative: Growing Together. Participants will learn from each other and experts, plus have hands-on time to work on a garden project for the host garden.

Join us for an introductory workshop on beekeeping with Patrick Hartzell at the home of Kristin and Joel Bulpitt.  We’ll start with a tour of Kristin & Joel’s yard to see a successful example of growing fresh fruits, vegetables & honey within city limits. Patrick will then discuss the components of a hive, basic bee info (types of bees in a hive, honeybee life cycle, honey production), and the role of a beekeeper. Afterwards, Kristin will lead a few short activities and projects that will allow for hands-on learning about beehives and seasonal planting.   Please RSVP to Amanda by Friday, March 16th at

  • Summer Crops Planting Workshop

      Saturday, March 24th   10am-12pm

       IFFS Teaching Farm, 4505 Tryon Rd, Raleigh

April is just around the corner so start planning your summer plantings right away!  The key to a successful summer garden is to plant early and often.  Multiple plantings assure a steady supply of early summer greens and root crops and mid to late summer tomatoes, melons, squash, beans, corn and peppers right up until the first fall frost. Come learn with us!  In addition to planting and planning tips, we’ll also cover weed suppression and beneficial bug habitats to keep your garden growing through the Dog Days.  Time’s a wasting!  Sign up now!  $10; RSVP by March 29th to

  • IFFS Spring Fling – Farm Festival for the whole family!

Sunday, April 1st 12pm-3pm

IFFS Teaching Farm, 4505 Tryon Rd, Raleigh

Join Inter-Faith Food Shuttle in ending hunger and celebrating the abundance of our Raleigh farm!

12:00 – 1:00                     chef demo, food, music

1:00 - 1:30                         farm tour

1:00 – 2:00                        kids activities: grow your garden (with a plant to take home!), natural egg dying, egg hunt, photo scavenger hunt, face-painting, games and more!

1:30 – 3:00                        workshops: farm healthy cooking and composting demonstration

  • Grow & Share 2012 Seed & Seedling Giveaway and Festival

Saturday, April 14, 12-5pm

Norris Creek Outdoor Entertainment Complex, 751 Old Halifax Road - Louisburg, NC 27549 

Live music, food, and fun. FREE plants and seeds in exchange for signing a pledge to share with your community! Learn how to grow fresh veggies to help feed the hungry.  IFFS will be at the festival to promote healthy, seasonal cooking on a budget. We will have interactive nutrition games with prizes and prepared foods from our farm for seasonal taste testing.

  • Organic Pest Control in Your Garden

Sunday, April 22nd 2:00-4:00pm

The Wedge Garden

To promote sharing urban gardening knowledge and skills, IFFS is working with local experts and educators to offer FREE monthly workshops in community and backyard gardens around Wake County through the Community Garden Collaborative: Growing Together. Participants will learn from each other and experts, plus have hands-on time to work on a garden project for the host garden.

Come celebrate Earth Day by learning how to control common garden pests without toxic pesticides! Join Master Gardener and Master Composter Connie Schultz and Ana Duncan Pardo of Toxic Free NC in Raleigh on Sunday, April 22nd from 2-4 p.m.

We'll cover how to control common garden pests (such as squash bugs, harlequin beetles and squash vine borers) WITHOUT using toxic chemicals that can harm our health and the environment.  We'll start with a short discussion on the role of pests and beneficial insects in the garden, as well as a brief overview of the concerns around pesticide use.  Then we'll move next door to the Wedge Community Garden to discuss and demonstrate pesticide-free strategies for combating pests. Afterwards, Connie will lead a demonstration on how to create a healthy, functional compost bin! Please RSVP to Amanda by Friday, April 20th at

 About the presenters:

Ana Duncan Pardo has a BS in Botany from NC State, is the Communications Coordinator at Toxic Free North Carolina , and is one of the founders of the Wedge Community Garden.

 Connie Schultz holds an Advanced Master Gardener certificate in Sustainable Gardening, and volunteers with Johnston County Cooperative Extension and the NC Community Garden Partners  . Connie is a member of Toxic Free NC's Community Leadership Council .


Multi purpose room at the Alexander Family YMCA 1603 Hillsborough St. Go to the front desk and ask to be directed to the multi-purpose room.

 Please call Ana if you have any trouble locating the YMCA or the garden: 919-818-5933.

  • Composting in the Garden at Enloe High School Community Garden

Saturday in May

Location & Time TBD (check our website again soon for updated information)

To promote sharing urban gardening knowledge and skills, IFFS is working with local experts and educators to offer FREE monthly workshops in community and backyard gardens around Wake County through the Community Garden Collaborative: Growing Together. Participants will learn from each other and experts, plus have hands-on time to work on a garden project for the host garden.

  • Growing a Gourmet Garden

      Saturday, May 12th   10am-12pm

      IFFS Teaching Farm, 4505 Tryon Rd, Raleigh

There is so much more to the Southern garden than Better Boy tomatoes, yellow squash, Silver Queen corn and Lima beans.  Heirloom tomatoes, mixed baby lettuce, fingerling potatoes, purple mustard greens and Candy Cane beets are just a few to whet your appetite.  Learn how to spice up your garden and turn your meals into a thru-the-garden gourmet experience.  Then come back next week for the mushroom workshop and Bon Appetit!   $10; RSVP by May 7th to