Fancy getting your hands dirty and learning a little something about how to grow your own food? Come along to our regular growing workshops where our expert gardener Zoe will teach you all you need to know about how to get the most out of your garden, windowbox or flowerpots!
Whether you’re based in Harrow or in one of our West End campuses, you’ll find a workshop to suit you at our gardens in Harrow and Marylebone. Workshops last for two hours so you’re welcome to join for the whole thing or if you’re strapped for time just pop in for 5 minutes to say hi!
You’ll find the Marylebone growing space on Luxborough St – look for the red door beside the loading bay – and the Harrow Garden beside the coffee shop in the Forum.
Here’s the schedule of workshops – looking forward to seeing some new and old faces out there this year!
Marylebone Freshers Fair, 21st September: Introduction to Horticulture: Why and How?
Horticulture is the art and practice of garden cultivation and management. As humans we are able to create the world around us as we see fit. We therefore can sculpt nature to fit our needs, but with this great power comes great responsibility to the world and each other. Plants provide a habitat for wildlife, shade, food, beauty and air. Their roots help bind the soil and prevent mudslides and drought. But how can we bring plantlife into our everyday lives? Taking that first step towards integrating nature into our busy urban lives helps us understand the importance of sustainability and ecology, and we can easily see the benefits to our overall wellbeing. In this workshop we will learn how to propagate our own plants by way of cuttings and seed planting. Everyone will go away with a cutting and a seedling and directions to care for their new green babies.
Marylebone, 26th September: Pests and Diseases
This workshop will cover common pests and diseases and how to resolve them… without chemicals! We’ll be making homemade pigeon scares, and discussing the best way to ward off aphids, slugs and mildew.
Harrow, 3rd October: Autumnal colour – Spring bulb planting
This is a very exciting time in the garden. Leaves are changing colour while many summer flowers are still going strong – a riot of colour! This is the time to plant woody shrubs but also to plant spring bulbs to give them plenty of time to bury down for the winter so they can erupt in the spring. Daffodils, tulips, snowdrops, bluebells and irises should all be planted now. We will be making a layered bulb planter that will produce a fabulous display in the spring.
Marylebone, 10th October: Sprouting beans and seeds
There is a large variety of beans and seeds that you can sprout in a cupboard, drawer or fridge that taste fantastic and are very good for you; packed with vitamins and minerals to ward of the coming cold season! They taste fantastic in salads, smoothies and as garnishes for many dishes like pad thai, salad and curries. We will be learning how to sprout common beans and seeds and share some recipes to use them.
Marylebone, 24th October: Winter bulbs for indoors.
Bulbs can be grown indoors and make beautiful and fragrant table decorations. Some examples for this are Hyacinths and Lily of the Valley, which have a lovely fragrance reminiscent of spring. We will make a bulb arrangement that will be happily in flower by the holiday season.
Harrow, 31st October: Halloween pumpkin carving
Ancient Celtic cultures in Ireland carved turnips on All Hallow’s Eve and placed an ember in them to ward off evil spirits. Now we cut Pumpkins!! So let’s put on our creative hats and make the very best Jack ‘O Lanterns!
Marylebone, 21st November: Wrapping up for winter
The weather outside is frightful: we’re wrapping up warm and our plants would appreciate the same treatment. Tender young plants that were sown in August may need fleecing, mulching and netting in order to survive frosty mornings and bitter nights as well as hungry squirrels and birds. As the temperature plummets in January and February you are much less likely to get outside and check on your plants so a little effort now will prevent a concerted effort in the future.
Harrow, 28th November: Harvest it and preserve it
By now all crops have been harvested and there is often much more than we can possibly eat before it spoils. This is the perfect opportunity to learn some preserving skills like pickling, jamming and freezing. We will discuss simple techniques to freeze many types of fruits and vegetables as well as sharing jam and pickling recipes as well as infusions and even fermentation. Also drying fruits, vegetables and herbs for use throughout the year.
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