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Natural Wattle Fence Building with Joneve Murphy

Sometimes referred to as hurdles, wattle fences have been around since the Stone Age and can be made from easily harvested and widely available materials. 

This one-day workshop will introduce the many uses of wattles, hurdles, the materials needed, and how to make a wattle fence and other add-ons like portholes, moon gates, and unique gates.  

We will visit a local farm to collect and discuss building materials with optimal selection and sustainable harvesting techniques. We will also discuss how to coppice trees to maintain consistent harvests and explore different options for adding colors and textures to natural fences.We will combine traditional and modern metal purlins to create a longer-lasting fence and experiment with making port holes, moon gates, and gates to add more structure. 

We will work through using the flexible sucker or saplings - “withies” - and learn proper techniques for the weaving, along with creating wind slits to maximize fence longevity. 

The class will start at a private farm in Washington, Virginia, and the address will be given after purchase.

Class Minimum: 5 people

Class Limit: 10 people

Hand out on making a wattle fence and coppicing will be provided. 

This is a HANDS ON class where you will be working with Joneve Murphy to feel confident on building your own fencing and hurdles as natural fencing. 

Herbal Teas and Nibbles will be provided.

About Joneve

Joneve Murphy has been farming for restaurants, markets and home cooks for more than 20 years. She settled in Virginia in 2009, working for a few years in Upperville before starting a farm for a Michelin 3 star restaurant in Rappahannock.

In 2014 she took a 2 year sabbatical for a mix of learning and teaching on farms in 18 different countries growing everything from vegetables and fruit to coffee, coconuts and more. She worked and lived on more than 200 farms and learned invaluable lessons on growing in various climates and conditions using both traditional farming methods as well as modern techniques.

She started bringing art into the garden in 2017 with mosaic plantings and natural structures. These structures provide support for plants and points of interest within the garden.

In 2021 she started her journey with botanical pigments by planting her first indigo plot. She has evolved her practice since then growing, foraging and painting with botanical inks.

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