Forest garden courses 2023

For 2024 courses see

Introduction to forest gardening

This one day course will introduce the principles and the plants of edible forest gardening. Topics will include how a forest garden works, the forest garden year, forest garden plants, and harvesting and cooking forest garden crops. The course be particularly aimed at those who want to grow in an allotment or small garden.

Sunday 14th May, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. – booking link
Sunday 4th June, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. – booking link
Monday 24th July 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. – booking link
Sunday 13th August, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. – booking link

Forest gardening through the year

These two courses are each in four parts, spread out over the year. They are a chance to see (and taste) the development of a forest garden through the year, with forest gardening principles and practice taught over the course of the visits, plus the tasks and harvests for each season. They are on weekdays, with daytime and evening options. The evening one is two hours per class, for those who might not be able to make it during the day. The daytime one is a more relaxed three hours per session.

Daytime – times and booking link
Evening – times and booking link

Beginning a forest garden

This one day course will cover the practical steps involved in starting a new forest garden, including understanding your site, planning your garden, access, starting a nursery bed, ground preparation and plant propagation and acquisition. The September course will be held near Huntly.

Sunday 10th September, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. – booking link
Sunday 15th October, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. – booking link

Forest gardening in communities

This is the introductory course, for those who want to do their community garden in a community space such as a park or community garden. With visits to my forest garden, a nearby community garden and a community-run park.

Sunday 2 July, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. – booking link

Pruning fruit trees and bushes

Pruning is used in orchards and forest gardens to improve yield, health and access. Getting it right involves understanding the growth patterns of the plant you are pruning, to guide it into putting less of its energy into woody growth and more into fruit.  This course will introduce the principles that underpin all pruning, and how they apply to apples, pears, plums, cherries, currants, gooseberries and cane fruit. The main course is two hours but there will be an opportunity in the afternoon for those who want to practice what they have learned to do so in a community orchard.

Sunday 12 March, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. – booking link
Friday 10 November 12 a.m. to 3 p.m., near Castle Fraser – booking link


All courses will be held in my forest garden in Aberdeen unless otherwise mentioned. They will be cancelled in the event of illness or severe weather and a full refund or transfer to another course will be given. You can cancel until 2 days earlier. There are three ticket types: standard, supporter and skint. The ‘skint’ rate is for those who would not be able to come if they had to pay the standard rate. The supporter rate helps me to provide these places.

If you need to stay in Aberdeen to make attending any of the courses possible, I can put up one person or couple for a night in my spare room. First come, first served!

If you have any symptoms of covid (or anything else contagious and nasty), do not come. I will give you a full refund or you can come on a different course.

If a course is full and you would like to go on a waiting list, please email me.

Further details are in the individual course booking pages.

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