OAEC supports diverse communities to design their own regenerative systems at the regional and local scale.
Our cookbook is a collection of inventive recipes inspired by seasonal eating from our biodiverse Mother Garden, orchards and Wildlands Preserve.
Experience the Occidental Arts & Ecology Center through a video tour and beautiful photographs of our Guest Houses, Meeting Room, Bathhouse, Kitchen & Dining Room, Mother Garden and more.
New in 2017: Now open every weekend April-October, Saturdays & Sundays from 10am-5pm! Our nursery specializes in open-pollinated perennials including edible landscaping plants, rare and endangered food crops, drought tolerant ornamentals and habitat plants. Join us for our three special Plant Sale Events focused on annual plants for starting your seasonal vegetable gardens.
OAEC offers the longest consistently running two-week Permaculture Design Certification course in the West. Immerse yourself in information, ideas and inspiration on how to design sustainable, regenerative systems in balance with your home ecosystem.
Our School Garden Teacher Training supports schools to integrate the school garden into multiple subject areas using place-based, experiential learning.
In Western Sonoma County, the location of the town of Occidental is unique in that it straddles a saddle between two distinct watersheds, Salmon Creek Watershed and Dutch Bill Creek Watershed, a tributary of the Russian River Basin. The town is bisected by what is called a watershed ridge divide which roughly runs through the south end of town, where the picnic tables sit in front of Howard’s Station.
The opportunity this site presents to educate picnicking visitors and locals about watersheds has not been lost on the dedicated members of the Dutch Bill Creek Watershed Group and the Salmon Creek Watershed Council. In June of 2006 they unveiled the fruits of their hard labor in the form of a watershed literacy interpretive display case.
This beautifully sculpted kiosk, with hand crafted steam-bent shingles and lovely salmon shaped trusses, houses a wealth of educational materials and is a must-see for locals, and eco-tourists alike. The north side of the display is dedicated to Dutch Bill Creek Watershed and the south side of the display is dedicated to the Salmon Creek Watershed. This kiosk provides an opportunity for these two active citizen based watershed groups to display their informative watershed maps, pictures, wildlife and plant lists, restoration information, community watershed related activities, public meetings and other pertinent ideas of interest to local community members and visiting tourists.
In the hearts and stomachs of many folks, Occidental has always been considered a special place and now with this new feature in town we can all celebrate and recognize the fact that visiting Occidental is quite literally a Watershed Moment. We hope that you too will venture down to visit this kiosk and have a watershed moment of your own.
On behalf of the Dutch Bill Creek Watershed Group and the Salmon Creek Watershed Council, the Occidental Arts and Ecology Center’s WATER Institute was able to make this exciting project happen due to a generous grant from the all the members of the Sunrise Sebastopol Rotary Club. In addition, many thanks are due to the skilled carpenters who volunteered their time, Mischa Steinbruck, James Pelican, Jim Coleman, Kate Lundquist and Stephanie Smith.