Nurture a passion for growing your own with a day with our Head Gardener at our productive River Cottage HQ.
At River Cottage we believe growing your own veg has the power to change your life. In these times of intensive farming, reliance on harmful pesticides and the detrimental effect it has on our environment, we need to be more reliant on our own patches of safe soil. If you are keen to learn more about transforming your patio, garden or allotment into a productive space join us for our signature course Get Growing.
This popular day at our 100-acre HQ is led by our Head Gardener Adam Crofts, an expert in organic gardening with a commitment to growing and eating the seasons. He will take you on an immersive journey through a combination of theory and practical demonstrations including tours of our famous walled kitchen garden and abundant polytunnels.
From planning and tools, to considering what to grow and where, to seed sowing, pruning, pests and disease, this is the perfect introductory day for both the curious and committed. You will be taught a comprehensive range of skills and techniques focused on vegetable and fruit growing including a cookery interlude with one of the River Cottage chefs.
If you’d like to immerse yourself into a 3-day gardening experience that embraces designing, planting, growing and harvesting, as well as creating the perfect environment to encourage relaxation and rejuvenation, then why not try our River Cottage Gardening Retreat?
Another great course I would defy anybody not to come away having learnt, changed their attitude and generally feeling more positive
Colin Attended 15 February 20194.7 out of 5
09:30 - 17:00
Arrive at River Cottage
Your day will begin at 9.30am with a tractor ride down to the farm (approx. a 5 minute journey), where you will catch your first glimpse of TV’s most famous farmhouse.
Make yourself at home
You will meet our Head Gardener, Adam Crofts, and River Cottage team host over tea or coffee and tasty treats fresh from the kitchen.
You will start by discussing what current space you have and which areas you most want to learn about during the day. Adam will talk about the amazing variety, value and flavours you can achieve by growing your own vegetables and give practical advice on tools and site.
Adam will take you on a tour of the kitchen garden to learn about crop rotation, the perfect compost, pruning and making your soil work for you.
Be inspired by a seasonal vegetable cookery demo, with a chance to have all of your veg questions answered by one of the River Cottage chefs.
Food is always the focus at River Cottage, and a delicious seasonal two-course lunch will be one of the highlights of your day.
Grow what you eat. How to choose what crops to grow, rotation and companion planting.
Step back outside to take a guided tour of our polytunnels and learn the practical benefits of growing under cover. Adam will teach you the fundamentals of propagation, so you can raise your plants from seed or cuttings.
Know your enemy! In the final session, you will learn about organic solutions to deal with the most common garden pests and diseases.
By now you will be probably be bursting with questions, so this will be your opportunity to take away some of our Head Gardener’s expert advice for successful growing at home.
At the end of the day you’ll be whisked back up the hill by our tractor and trailer (at 5pm), full of confidence to get the most out of your garden.
Please note: This is a guide to the activities that will make up your course at River Cottage. This is by no means set in stone and will depend on seasonal availability.
On occasion cookery schools will use equipment that includes induction hobs. It is recommended that people with pace makers should not work on these units. If you are concerned or would like to check whether or not induction hobs will be used on the course you are interested in, please call us on 01297 630302.
This course is run from River Cottage HQ on the Dorset/Devon borders. Full address details of HQ will be provided once you have booked.
We are a licensed venue. We have a wide selection of the finest organic wines available to purchase.
We would advise that this course is only really suitable for 12 years of age and upwards. Under 16s must be accompanied by a paying adult. We put these guidelines in place for the safety, comfort and enjoyment of all our guests.
With many of our courses there are often treats and leftovers to take away with you. In our quest to be more sustainable we are encouraging guests to bring their own containers and bags to transport their produce home. Details of what is required for each course will be included in booking emails.
- Sustainable Restaurant Association
- Food and Travel Magazine 2017
- Great British Food Awards 2017
- Great British Food Awards 2018