Day 1: Sunday, Dec. 6th

9:00am – 7:00pm CST

Help Desk

We have staff on call during the entire conference to help with any questions or issues you may have.

10am – 10:30am CST

Welcome by Keefe Keeley, Co-Executive Director, Savanna Institute and Uma Karki, President, Association for Temperate Agroforestry

11am – 12:00pm CST

Nutshells Talks:Sponsored by Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE)

A main feature of the gathering will be the ever-popular 5-minute Nutshell Show & Tell talks, which are open to all attendees to share success stories, lessons-learned, or nagging questions to help build knowledge across the region.

11am – 12pm CST

AFTA Panel:

Who is AFTA and Why Should You Care

Lunch Break: 12pm – 1pm CST


Deep Roots Award presentation to Paul Johnson

12pm – 1pm CST

Join us live to honor Paul’s work:

Honoring Paul Johnson at the Perennial Farm Gathering

Conferring virtual laurels in appreciation of a life’s work advancing perennial agriculture


2pm – 3pm CST

Elderberry Panel

This panel will kick off with a discussion about current elderberry research, advice from an experienced elderberry farmer; including bed preparation, cultivation techniques, future development and research needs for this growing commercial crop. 

Andy Thomas, Research Assistant Professor, University of Missouri Southwest Center 

Natasha Simeon, Owner and Farmer at Regeneration Acres

Patrick Byers, Field specialist in Horticulture MU Extension in Webster County Extension University of Missouri


2pm – 3pm CST

AFTA Panel: Silvopasture and Soil Health


3pm – 4:30pm CST

Grafting Workshop: Sponsored by SILT

Learn alongside longtime grafting expert how to do a “barn-door” graft (AKA “modified mega chip-bud inlay bark graft”) and an “inverted saddle” graft.

Tom Wahl, Owner & Farmer Red Fern Farm

The Sustainable Iowa Land Trust (SILT) is a non-profit organization working to preserve land in Iowa for nature-friendly, sustainable food farming. They work with landowners who wish to pass the legacy of their land on to the next generation of food farmers. Currently, they protect over 1000 acres of land and have provided opportunities to beginning farmers all across Iowa. For more information about SILT please visit

3pm – 3:45pm CST

Mushroom Production in Agroforestry

Join Steve Gabriel, co-steward of Wellspring Forest Farm in New York and Specialty Mushroom Extension Educator at the Cornell Small Farms Program and Olivia Watkins, steward of Oliver’s Agroforestry in North Carolina and president of the Black Farmer Fund. In this session, Steve and Olivia will share about their shiitake production systems and connect them to regenerative forest management, land legacy, and profitable small enterprise.  

Steve Gabriel, Owner & Farmer of Well Spring Forest Farm

Olivia Watkins, steward of Oliver’s Agroforestry

3:45pm – 4:30pm CST

Maple Syruping in Agroforestry Systems: Sponsored by Forrest Keeling Nursery

Maple syruping in agroforestry systems: This panel will discuss the history and future of this traditional agroforested crop. How to manage sugar maples amidst climate change, companion plants to maple sugar trees, tools of the trade and challenges of entering into the maple syrup market. 

Cecil Wright: Maple Valley Coop

Sheamus Cavanaugh, University of Wisconsin, Intertribal Maple Syrup Producers Cooperative, Farley Center for Peace, Justice and Sustainability 



Dinner Break

4:30pm – 6pm CST

Enjoy your dinner while checking out our Pioneer Agroforestry Farm Tour Video Series!



6pm – 7pm CST

Elderberry Meet-up

Connect with fellow growers and enthusiasts!

6pm – 7pm CST

Young Farmers Meet-up

Meet your fellow beginning farmers! A great chance to network and share ideas.

Conference Add-Ons

If you purchased a bonus session, check your email for the Zoom passcode.

6pm – 7pm CST

Connecting with Keefe & Kevin

What are the opportunities and barriers facing agroforestry in the US? Join SI ED, Keefe Keeley, for a thoughtful conversation about the future of agroforestry and visions for change…. and at least one tree crop inspired cocktail.