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Coming Home to Oaks & Acorns • Ojai


november 9-10, 2019

photo of acorn dough, by Daniel Dent

photo of acorn dough, by Daniel Dent

Join Wildtender for a two day intensive exploring the pan-ancestral traditions of tending oak groves and processing acorns. Sit in circle and allow your hands to remember how to shell, grind, and leach acorns for food. Learn to make ink, dyes, and medicines from these mighty and generous trees. Come home to the wild, to your ancient self, and to oaks and acorns.

Countless cultures across the Northern Hemisphere have regarded acorns as a staff of life and powerful medicine. The Celts defended their sacred oak forests against the exploitation of Roman invaders. Indigenous Californians have meticulously tended multi-generational oak orchards for millenia. In present day Korea, people consume bitter acorn soba, with an anti-parasitic effect. Human history is deeply interwoven with the great lives of oak trees, and the nutrient dense little acorn.

Weather permitting this course will take place entirely outside in the Sepse Wilderness (Chumash territory) surrounding Ojai.

Workshop Details • November 9-10, 2019

  • November 9 | Meet in downtown Ojai at 10am and caravan to the nearby Sespe Wilderness. Day 1 will focus on acorns and food preparation. Program will conclude by 5pm.

  • November 10 | Meet in downtown Ojai at 10am. Day 2 will focus on oaks for wildcrafting (dyes, inks and medicine). Program will conclude by 4pm.

Meet your guides


Noël Vietor

Noël has been in an ongoing apprenticeship with sacred gardens and wilds of California. Her work and interests are dedicated to helping people relate more meaningfully with the land, themselves and each other. Noël served as the Program Coordinator for the Esalen Institute Farm & Garden in Big Sur from 2010-2015 – organizing its land-based educational programs and practice of Relational Agriculture, rooted in Esalen’s Gestalt lineage. Noël found a deep sense of belonging in the Big Sur wild while hiking the steep trails, learning the history and stories of the place, and experimenting with wild-crafting and homestead arts. Noël is certified with NOLS Wilderness First Aid.

photo by Colin McCarthy

photo by Colin McCarthy

Fletcher Tucker

Wildtender Co-Founder Fletcher Tucker was raised on California’s Central Coast. Fletcher found his deepest sense of belonging living on, and learning from, the wild landscape of Big Sur (Esselen territory), which he called home for nearly a decade. Having hiked and backpacked throughout the American West, Europe and Japan, Fletcher has become a devotee of trail-craft and minimalist backpacking. Fletcher is an experienced teacher, ancestral skills practitioner, Deep Ecology disciple, and lifelong student of California natural history. Fletcher is a dedicated student of Gestalt practice in the lineage of Esalen Institute co-founder Dick Price. Fletcher has studied and participated ceremonially with teachers within indigenous North and South American spiritual traditions, and is deeply engaged with the mythopoetics and Earth-reverent practices of his own northern European ancestors. Fletcher is a NOLS certified Wilderness First Responder.

Program Tuition

Tuition is $160. All supplies are included. Tuition does not include travel or accommodations.

Space is limited to only 13 participants and this program is by application.

No experience is required, but participation in this workshop will require walking on uneven trails and some physical exertion. Participants should be physically capable, free of bodily injury or serious health conditions. Participants must be at least 16 years of age. Registration below.

Application & Registration

Steps to Register

Please note: registration can be completed on a smart phone or tablet, but the process is easier on a laptop or desktop computer. The process may take up to 10 minutes to complete.

  • Please carefully review our Waiver, Terms & Conditions, It is essential that you fully understand our payment and cancellation policies, agreements and expectations before making your commitment.

  • Type in the number of participants you are registering in the “Quantity” field, then click the “REGISTER / ADD TO CART” button.

Register / Add to Cart
  • Once your selection has been added to the cart click on the “CHECK OUT” button below. You will be prompted to enter payment and personal/medical registration information. Some of the medical information we collect, and agreements we ask for, are intended for backpacking programs and will not be applicable to this workshop.

  • Wildtender will be in touch to confirm receipt of your payment and registration, and to follow up with any questions. If we see an issue that prevents your participation, we will be in touch, and a full refund will be made promptly.

Terms & Conditions

Thorough review of Wildtender’s Terms & Conditions is required for registration.

Frequently Asked Questions

If you have specific questions please review our FAQ section.