Welcome to New Forest Farm

New Forest Farm is a diverse Restoration Agriculture research site in the Driftless Area of Southwestern Wisconsin.

Founded and stewarded by the Shepard family for over 20 years, the land is one of the country’s most ambitious large-scale conversions of former degraded corn farm into a perennial agricultural ecosystem.

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New Forest Farm

New Forest Farm is a planned conversion of a typical row-crops grain farm into a commercial-scale, perennial agricultural ecosystem using oak savanna, successional brushland and eastern woodlands as the ecological models.

Overall, the land attempts to mimic the oak savanna biome. Trees, shrubs, vines, canes, perennial plants and fungi are planted in association with one another to produce food, fuel, medicines, and beauty. Hazelnuts, chestnuts, walnuts, apples, and elderberries are the primary woody crops, and are planted along a keyline™-inspired water management pattern.

Between the tree crops, the grassy alleys are often grazed by cows, pigs, turkeys, sheep, pigs or chickens. These systems are building soil, retaining water, sequestering carbon, diversifying habitat, and cultivating the human being and our ecology.

The farm is entirely solar and wind powered and farm equipment has the capacity to be powered with locally produced biofuels that are not taken from the human food chain.

Come witness and learn from this twenty year old large scale perennial polyculture experiment!

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Tour the Farm

TOURS 2019

Tour Dates (led by Mark Shepard)

DAY: Saturday, April 6, 2019

Tour Description:

Join Mark for a tour of New Forest Farm.

Come join us for a beautiful walk at the farm! Spring makes for a great opportunity to observe the water management structures like swales, berms and pocket ponds and how these were patterned to create ecological resiliency across the property.  This is commonly a soggy time of year, so please come prepared with rain gear and comfortable waterproof boots. There is a lot to see, so please arrive at this event on time, as we’ll be getting started promptly at 10am. Connect with Karen to register for this tour and register with the link below.

TIME: 10:00pm-1:00pm

COST: $250 flat rate for 1-13 attendees, then $20 per additional person — group rates available.

To register for our April 6th tour from 10-1 for $20/person, click below.

Register here for $20/person.


  • Meet at the cydery building where the tour will begin. It has a big green metal roof and is visible from County Highway I on the N side of the street.
  • The experience could include sunny skies, rainfall, and walking across hilly terrain. Being mindful of possible sudden changes in weather. It is wise to come prepared wearing long pants, close-toes hiking shoes, rain gear, and sun protection. Be sure to carry along your own water and snacks.
  • Short overnight stays are also possible for those traveling long distances or who wish to stay a bit longer. Please be prepared to sleep outdoors and contribute to collective food & work if needed.


DAY: (TENTATIVE) Saturday, August 17, 2019

Come join us for a beautiful walk at the farm. This is tree crops harvesting season where the apples, pears, grapes and chestnuts are bountiful. We will be doing a hybrid hazelnut harvesting demo too! Please arrive at this event on time, as we’ll be getting started promptly at 10:00am. Connect with Karen to pre-register for this tour.

TIME: 10:00pm-1:00pm

Tour Description:

Join Mark for a tour of New Forest Farm.

Journey under thousands of chestnut trees, venture through the hazelnut maze, observe Keyline-inspired ponds and swales, and meet the pigs, chickens and any other critters who are grazing beneath the heritage apple trees.

TIME: ~3 hours

If you would prefer to visit the farm during a time or day not listed here, we are still excited to welcome you.  Please contact us to schedule a different opportunity.



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Use this form for questions, inquiries or registering for our farm events!