Garden blogs

Growing the Future Newsletter – December 20

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Welcome to Growing the Future‘s latest newsletter, if you’d like to receive it directly to your inbox, sign-up here.

See the full newsletter here.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

It’s been an incredibly busy and successful first year for the Growing the Future project, here at the National Botanic Garden.

Thank you to everyone who has participated in our courses and events throughout 2018, we look forward to welcoming you to another packed programme of courses and events in 2019.

Courses as Gifts

If you’re still looking for that perfect gift for your loved ones this Christmas, how about a Growing the Future course voucher?

From beekeeping to vegetable growing, and bee garden cosmetics to planting design – there’s something to suit everyone!

Please visit the Growing the Future page on the Botanic Garden’s website, call 01558 667150 or email gtf@gardenofwales.org.uk for more information.

 

The Pollinators’ Flower Garden

On Thursday, January 17th, join Growing the Future’s Horticultural Trainer, Susan O’ Brien, for a Pollinators’ Flower Garden course.

Design and create your sowing and growing pollinating calendar from springtime blossoms to winter blooms.

Identify flowering patterns and how to use both ‘cut and come’, ‘medium producers’ and ‘one-hit wonders’.

Take away tips on timings and learn how to plan for a continuous display.

Booking is essential.  10am-1pm.  £30 (£27 Concessions & Garden Members).  For more information, including how to book, please call 01558 667150 / 01558 667185 email gtf@gardenofwales.org.uk, or visit the Garden’s Eventbrite page.

Find out more on the Garden’s work saving pollinators across the world here.

 

Captivating Conifers

If you have a real Christmas tree this year and would like to learn more about it and its origins, join Growing the Future’s Science Officer, Dr Kevin McGinn, for a ‘Captivating Conifers‘ course on Thursday, January 24th or Saturday, February 9th.

Conifers are a fascinating group of plants, including cedars, firs, hemlocks, larches, pines and spruces.

During this course, learn the key features used to identify different conifer families and species and will explain the origins of some ‘dwarf’ garden conifers.

The course will begin in our teaching lab, moving on to a tour of conifers in the Garden’s living collections.  Beginners and improvers welcome.

Booking is essential.  10.30am-3pm.  £35 (£32 Concessions & Garden Members).  For more information, including how to book, please call 01558 667150, email gtf@gardenofwales.org.uk or visit the Garden’s Eventbrite page.

 

The Sustainable Allotment Calendar: This Month on the Plot

On Thursday, February 7th, join Growing the Future’s Horticultural Trainer, Susan O’ Brien, for the latest course in the Sustainable Allotment Calendar.

Focus on sowing seed under cover, labelling and keeping track.  Learn how to test for seed viability and set-out boxes for chitting.

Prepare trays and plugs for sowing and select seed.  Follow the progress out on the beds, assess workability and mulch.

Time to stir-up the compost heap, aerate the pile and check moisture levels.

Booking is essential.  10am-2pm.  £33 (£30 Concessions & Garden Members).  For more information, including how to book, please call 01558 667150, email gtf@gardenofwales.org.uk or visit the Garden’s Eventbrite page.

 

Planting Design for Beginners

On Friday, February 8th, join guest horticultural trainer, Neil Barry, for a Planting Design for Beginners Course.

An overview of the key principles of planting design to give attendees an understanding of how to create a garden that ‘works’ and is pleasing to the eye.

Topics will include scale and proportion, balance, colour theory and texture.

Booking is essential.  10am-2pm.  £40 (£36 Concessions & Garden Members).  For more information, including how to book, please call 01558 667150 / 01558 667185, email gtf@gardenofwales.org.uk or visit the Garden’s Eventbrite page.

 

Beekeeping Courses

Whether you’re a beginner or an improving beekeeper, develop your knowledge, skills and confidence in maintaining your own colonies with a Growing the Future Beekeeping Course.

Booking is essential.  For more information on any of the courses below, including how to book, please call 01558 667150 or email gtf@gardenofwales.org.uk

Beekeeping Taster Course
2019: Saturday June 8th, Sunday July 21st & Friday August 9th – 11am-2pm

An introduction to the Growing the Future project and why we have honeybees at the National Botanic Garden of Wales.  Learn about the honeybee colony and visit the Garden’s Bee Garden, put on a bee suit, open a hive and be shown its occupants, including workers, drones and the Queen.
£35 (£32 Concessions & Garden Members)

Bee Garden Cosmetics
2019: Wednesday February 20th, Tuesday April 30th, Tuesday June 18th, Saturday September 28th & Friday November 8th – 11am-2pm

Learn about the products of the hive produced by the honeybees, including beeswax and honey and their use in beauty products.  Learn the principles of soap-making with a demonstration on making honey soap.  Create products to take home including lip balm, body butter and face cream.
£45 (£41 Concessions & Garden Members)

5-Week Practical Sessions: Summer Season
2019: Wednesday July 3rd, 10th, 17th, 24th & 31st
Five weekly practical sessions in the Garden’s Bee Garden, opening hives and learning effective hive assessment.  Followed by classroom sessions evaluating the inspections and learning about the beekeeping year.  Whether you’re a beginner or an improving beekeeper, develop your confidence in carrying out and evaluating hive inspections.
£150 (£135 Concessions & Garden Members)

 

Horticulture Courses

There’s a whole range of Practical Horticulture and Science & Horticulture courses to suit everyone, from planting design for beginners to creating a sensory garden, develop your gardening knowledge and skills with a Growing the Future course.

Spring Bloomers
Thursday February 14th – 10am-1pm

Create a plan with clusters of colour and seasonal interest to take you through the spring and early summer months.
Learn how to make the most of small space opportunities and enhance your design with ease.
Consider steps and entrances, windowsills and walls, beds and borders, plots and pots.  Select your style and take away tips for planting and plant care.
£30 (£27 Concessions & Garden Members)

Planting Design: Next Steps
Saturday February 16th – 10am-2pm
Following on from our ‘Planting Design for Beginners’ course, this course will look at planting plans, measuring and scale drawing, as well as looking at elements of design within the Garden and discussing how these could be implemented in your own growing space.
To get the most from this course, it would be useful, though not essential, to have attended the beginners course.
£40 (£36 Concessions & Garden Members)

Alphabet Veg
Thursday February 21st – 10am-2pm
Write up your recipes for the veg plot and create your sowing and growing calendar menu.
Identify single and multi-croppers and see where to place them in your plan.  Practice sowing in the polytunnel and planting out.
Add flavour to your plot with herbs. Identify annuals and perennials and learn how to grow from seed and plug plants.
Finish the day with a visit to the wiggly wormeries and see how easy it is to make food for the garden from kitchen waste.
£33 (£30 Concessions & Garden Members)

Booking is essential – for more information, including how to book, please call 01558 667150 or email gtf@gardenofwales.org.uk.