Spring Gardening Apprenticeship
GivingTree Farm Herb Company will offer a 40 hour Spring Gardening Apprenticeship
Program. This introductory-to-intermediate course is designed for someone who is completely new to gardening or has been gardening
for just a few seasons or less. To keep the quality of instruction high, the program will be limited to just 8 to 10 students.
Classes begin Saturday afternoons on
April 4th, from 11 - 3pm, and continue through June 13th for ten weeks. There will be at least one Saturday Field Trip to
a regional herb nursery that the class selects sometime during the Gardening Apprenticeship.
Certificates of Completion will be awarded at the end of class
& scheduling an optional Summer Gardening Apprenticeship will be discussed before the end of the Spring program if there
ABOUT THE GARDENING PROGRAM
The Willamette Valley is an ideal place
to garden. Blessed with our fairly mild maritime climate we have year-round gardening opportunities. As Gaia undergoes potentially
radical climate change, knowing how to grow one’s own food and medicine will become critical. Our goal is to teach you
the essentials, supporting and inspiring you to keep on going and growing (and growing...) We will employ holistic, sustainable,
and organic approaches without chaining ourselves to a rigid gardening philosophy. Students will be encouraged to figure out
what works for them, rather than to just rely solely on “experts.”
Our topics of exploration will be driven by student interest and
Planning and Design
in The Garden
Diseases -- How to Treat and Avoid Them Naturally
Cover Crops - “Green Manures”
Water-wise and Xeriscape Gardening
Gardening as a Political Act
Greenhouses and Cold Frames
Herbs as Flowers
as Landscape Plants
Aspects of Herbs
and Horoscopes -- Gardening Astrologically
Planetary Gardening By The Sun, Moon and Stars
How to Choose the Right Plant for Your Needs
Insect Pests and Beneficial Bugs
The Art of Propagation - Choosing Seeds or Starts?
Protecting and Promoting Native Plants
Proper Pruning Techniques
A Selected History of Gardening
Spiritual Aspects of Gardening
Weather, The Seasons and Persistence
The Vital Importance of Building Your
name a few...
learn several important skills: how to plan and design your new garden, improve upon your already established garden; decide
what seeds or plants to buy; how to grow, harvest and preserve food from your garden; how to organize, harvest, process and
store your own seeds; how to grow and use culinary and medicinal herbs; and how to make and use compost and compost tea.
We will be using my small urban garden
as a living laboratory. We will include comprehensive discussions and demonstrations of where, when and how to prepare a garden
bed. We will also go over how to plant seeds in containers and how to effectively direct seed. You will discover how to transplant
and care for your plants in the ground and how to harvest and preserve food and medicinal plants.
The cost of the Gardening Apprenticeship is $275 dollars. A $75 deposit is required to hold your
place in the class. Unless otherwise arranged, the full amount of the Apprenticeship is due by March 20th, 2015. Please make
all forms of payment payable to: Lawrence Birch.
Your payment is your registration. Our refund policy, in the event that a student is legitimately
unable to complete the course, is on a pro-rated basis. Full refunds will be given up to March 5th, 2015. Refunds after March
5th but before March 20th will be returned --minus a $25 fee.
No refunds will be given after March 20th.
these 6 essential tools by our 2nd Saturday class - a shovel; a hoe; a bow rake; a hand trowel; a hand pruner; and a hand
file which you will use to keep the blades of your hoe and shovel nice and sharp. Expect to spend approximately $100 - $200
dollars on good quality tools. If you are unsure what tools to buy, we will discuss what tools to look for on our first day
of class. Make sure you bring gloves to class to protect your precious hands. And please come well prepared for Oregon’s
lovely spring weather! Wear warm, waterproof, comfortable garden wear.
ABOUT YOUR INSTRUCTOR
Lawrence Birch has been gardening for over 25 years, since 1986. At the age of 18, needing a healthy
distraction from the rigors of academic pursuits, he began an extensive herb garden at his grandfather’s house in North
Albany. Eventually, his mother joined in the act and for a number of years they pursued a part-time herbal business at the
Albany and Corvallis Farmer’s Markets, selling everything from Elephant Garlic to Salsa and Pesto.
After moving to Eugene in 1988, he continued
to garden in a variety of locations and was a fixture more often than not at either the Eugene Farmer’s Market or Saturday
Market for many seasons. Now, after moving back to Albany, his gardening experience has come full circle. He is looking forward
to the next 25 years of gardening.