Tag Archives: gardening

JULY :: Classes & Events at the Farm

On a small hill in Garfield, Healcrest Urban Farm is bursting with the colorful flowers of herbs in the height of summer! Our working, urban, organically run farm hosts a variety of events. Contact Michelle for booking at 615 804 0064.

Volunteering on the Farm!

Every Sunday from 11­4 join us for a volunteer day! We’ll be busy harvesting flowers, weeding, and working in our berry patch this month. Farm Tour at starts at 4pm, free for Garfield residents.

Classes & Workshops

In July we have 5 classes scheduled­ three Fermentation Classes with Natalya and two Herb Classes with Michelle! Fermentation classes will not run with fewer than 8 participants, so please register early at http://www.healcresturbanfarm.com/events.html

Salve Making Class! Monday July 7, 6­8 pm ($20)

From blooming garden to a wonderful finished product! Learn abut the therapeutic properties of different herbs and why you would chose them for your oil. We will talk
about many plants in the gardens and how to harvest them. Then we’ll harvest our own
roots and flowers to infuse our oils, discuss different techniques and turn your finished infused oils into a salve. Participants will leave with samples of products made in class. (Please register in advance so we can have enough supplies on hand)

Sauerkraut and Kimchi – Wednesday July 9, 6­8 pm ($25)

During this show, tell, an taste you will learn the foundations of making sauerkraut and kimchi. There is no one way of doing it. Come and explore the exciting possibilities that variations offer for our breakfast, lunch, and dinner plate.

Fermented Beverages – Monday July 14, 6­8 pm ($25)

This show, tell, and taste session will introduce you to the making of lightly fermented natural sodas with water kefir grains, fermented syrups to be mixed with sparkling water, and a variety of alcoholic meads.

Herbal Sleep Aids – Monday July 21, 6­8 pm ($10)

Trouble getting to sleep? Staying asleep? Bothered by sleep apnea? Or is it impossible to wake up?

Learn about different herbal approaches for addressing difficulties falling asleep all and trouble waking up. Walk through the gardens to identify common sleep aid plants and discuss how to grow and process them.

The Easy and Fun Milk Fermentations – Wednesday July 30, 6­8 pm ($25)

This session will cover the making of cultured and non­cultured butters, milk kefir,
okroshka (eastern European cold soup with milk kefir) and clabbering raw milk to make a
simple but delicious farmer’s cheese. Yum!

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Filed under herbal medicine, Pittsburgh, Workshops

Herb Classes and Walks with Michelle

Herb Classes and Walk with Michelle

Join us this summer at Healcrest Urban Farm for herbal education with certified Herbalist Michelle Soto!

Register here http://www.healcresturbanfarm.com/events.html

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June 15, 2014 · 5:06 pm

It’s a Weed Walk! This Sunday MAY 18th – 3 to 5PM

Healcrest is hosting herb walks and classes with Michelle!

We’re kicking off our season:
this Sunday MAY 18th – 3 to 5PM
It’s a Weed Walk!
to learn about the plants poppin out NOW that its spring!

We’re going to walk and talk about what’s growing now and what it looks like. Curious about how to harvest burdock to get the most out of it? Or simply want to know what burdock is and looks like? We’ll talk about medicinal uses, cultivation techniques, wildcrafting habits, and whatever you want. There’s going to be a number of these kinds of classes this year where we can visit the same plants in different seasons and growing stages and identify and use them is a variety of ways.

the walk and talk is $10 and our rain date’s set for may 20, 4-6.

Register Here let us know if you have any questions, 615-804-0064 thanks! and happy spring,


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Filed under Events, Gardening, herbal medicine, Urban Farming



photo by Luiza Sarbu

Peaches or Pear & Lilac Cream (vegan)
Rose Lassi (yogurt)
Cherry Vanilla Smoother

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May 5, 2013 · 11:26 pm

Orchards and Flowers Budding::Happy Earth Day

Orchards and Flowers Budding::Happy Earth Day

Healcrest is literally Springing to Life! Thanks to help of dedicated helping hands who love getting their hands a little dirty and tending to the soil and plants.

Buds, Bees, Birds, Blossoms! We’re lovin’ life, enjoying the spring showers of rain, help, motivation, creativity, and abundance! More Here http://www.healcresturbanfarm.com/

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April 22, 2013 · 7:06 pm

When the sun gets hot and the moon gets hazy Good girls go bad


Summer rainbow over our pot of gold!

And we mean BAAADDDAAASSS!!!!

Us over here in the Garfield neighborhood of Pittsburgh have been working tail to head on our gardens. By the end of this post we have harvest 5lbs of rasberries, 2 quarts or more of gigantic sweet blackberries, lavender, chocolate mint, peppermint, spearmint and we are just getting started!!!

Because of our good friends Jen and Jon – we have bees buzzing in their lovely hives, drinking up water and pollinating our crops! Apples and grapes are growing well this year and everything is in bloom!

Can’t wait for greenhouse tomatoes, celery, strawberries, okra, watermelon and fresh in the raised beds – swiss chard, summer squashes, more tomatoes,macha, sweet peppers and more! You can see we are over the hazy moon here at Healcrest!


Dried Lavender for final inspection

Dana, fresh off the job market – is taken her hours to cultivate Healcrest and get orders out on Etsy! If your a loyal Etsyian – feel free to email us or ask any question – we will surely answer you as swift as we can.

Remember to check out our products on Etsy


We planted brand new gardens to increase the amount of medicinal and culinary herbs we produce for our products and eventually for bulk sale. On our list now:

Lavender           Calendula

Borage             Bee Balm

Red Clover       Lemon Verbena

Rosemary        Sage

Chocolate Min   Mountain Mint

Spearmint       CatMint

CatNip             Motherwort

Mugwort         Mullein

Lemon Balm   Rugosa Rose

Rasberry Leaf  Blackberry Leaf

Bamboo Leaf   Chamomile

Chaste Berry   Nettles


And the amounts we have of this will just expand each year! Now please enjoy the pictures as they tell the 1000 words better than I ever could!


May Red Clover Harvest with toddler farmer


Mint, Lavender, Mullein and Greenhouse!

First summer harvest of herbs

Brand new herb garden being irrigated

Into the dryer the red clover goes!

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Feeling spring

The groundhog is a Pennsylvania thing, still attached to the pinnings of mother nature we stand firm in traditions of shadows & light, earth & sky. Today of all days feels a bit like spring. So is this why Phil said spring is coming! Just his feeling for today? Check out the Washington post commentary…

After a short break in California we feel rejuvenated here and the sun seems to have followed us back. I don’t mind the cold if the sun is resting on our cheeks. Feeling inspired by the ocean breeze and beautiful grounds with eucalyptus & jade, lavender & Rosemary growing with ease. We spent some time with chickens in the back yard & watching them lay their eggs.

I ponder the coming year for Healcrest & how we might make this space the oasis it is meant to be. Lively with people, home to chickens & other small animals, teeming with herbs & fruits & vegetables.

We are looking now at some small sources of funding to get the farm the infrastructure & staff it needs to bloom.

A fundraiser is being planned for early spring & any support we can gather would be exciting! Please let us know if you can play a role in helping to plan our spring event! Musicians, gardeners, marketing savvy peeps & all are welcome.

Here are some pics of southern Cali to warm your heart & inspire your mind!

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Filed under Pittsburgh, Urban Farming

Volunteer Giveaway will leave you Breathless!!!

So local growing is in the height of its busy time, getting seedlings in the ground, starting new seedlings, keeping the plants watered, planting new fruit trees, clearing new garden spaces, weeding, nourishing and finally…. picking – herbs, strawberries, rasberries and soon greens!!

We want all those who have been interested in volunteering to fulfill that promise to themselves and get out to their local urban east-end Healcrest Urban Farm and spend 2 hours supporting local food – and enjoying the beautiful land, the butterflies nesting in the milkweed, the blooming lavender, the warm sun on their skin!! So many benefits to spending time here.

So here it goes………..

The first person to contact me via email and schedule their two hour volunteer time will win this super squeaky clean gift basket of handmade, all-natural, super delicious soaps made from the hands of Breathless Beauty!!

Dawn, of Breathless Beauty is an avid handmade artisan and has been making soaps, butters, and so much more for the past 11 years! She makes all the soaps in small batches, using the finest carrier oils, herbs for medicinal value, and high quality essential oils for a soap that will be nutrient, cleansing and make you smell amazing!

This basket is filled with 5 great full-size bars:

Real Momma Times – infused with a healing herb mix fenugreek, anise seed, blessed thistle, nettle leaf and marshmallow root, great for mamas of all kinds!

Soft Skin Please –  olive oil, coconut oil,  cocoa butter, comfrey root powder and essential oils.

Walnut Brownie – cocoa powder and crused walnut shells in a pure olive oil base

Cloveberry – essential oil of clove mingles with exfoliating strawberry seeds and a wonderful vegetable soap base

Sq-uean Shampoo Bar – carrot infused with rosemary

By the way…you can find Breathless Beauty at www.breathlessbeauty.net and take care of all your sudsy needs!

This basket retails at $29.50 – so its like getting paid to do your volunteer work! Pretty nice deal!

So back to how you get this basket:

Email us at healcresturbanfarm@gmail.com

Tell us which volunteer slot you would like:

Saturday, June 5th at 12noon-2pm -yes that is tomorrow!! If you pick this one you can come to a free event at Healcrest too – double wammie!!

Thursday, June 10th at 5:30-7:30pm

Sunday June 13th 9:30-11:30am

And finally – show up for volunteer slot and the basket will be waiting for you…Along with the work!!

We look forward to receiving your responses and if you don’t win…I won’t let you now until you get here! (But we will have fresh rasberries and herbs and cool water as a consolation prize!!!!)




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Filed under Pittsburgh, Uncategorized, Urban Farming