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Forest Gardens and Edible Ecosystems; Design, Harvest and Use

Schumacher College Gardens

With Martin Crawford and Caroline Aitken

Fee: 
£ 550.00
Course fees include private accommodation, all vegetarian meals and snacks, field trips including transport, materials and teaching sessions. Reserve your spot for only £150.00 deposit.
This course is full.

With Martin Crawford and Caroline Aitken

This couse is full, please sign up to the waiting list here

Join Schumacher College for an exciting opportunity to experience edible ecosystems at different stages of development and with differing emphases and to learn about gathering and using the harvest with expert practitioners and joint authors of Food from your Forest Garden.

At A Glance

  • Be assisted in designing a forest garden to meet your needs with agroforestry and permaculture experts
  • Gain practical knowledge and confidence to cook and experiement using your crops
  • Learn and take part in harvesting and preserving produce

About This Course

Forest gardens (or Edible ecosystems) are one of the most sustainable and regenerative ways of growing edible crops. They have grown in popularity in temperate climates over the past 20 years. This course is designed to help you both start designing a forest garden according to your needs and to look at uses of possible produce.

Many people feel unsure or deskilled when it comes to cooking and processing unusual vegetables and fruits; this course will give you knowledge and confidence to start cooking and experimenting with more unusual crops that you may wish to include in a forest garden design.

Tutors include the world expert Martin Crawford, founder and director of The Agroforestry Research Trust (whose 20 year old forest garden is on the Dartington Estate) and leading permaculturalist Caroline Aitken of Patrick Whitfield Associates.

The course will involve a tour of the Schumacher College Forest garden which is in its early stage of development and a close look at its design. Tours of Martin Crawford’s established and pioneering forest garden at Dartington, a tour of his nursery site and pioneering forest garden greenhouse, a nut trial site, and hands on harvesting and preserving of some forest garden produce with Caroline Aitken.

This is an exciting opportunity to experience edible ecosystems at different stages of development and with differing emphases and to learn about gathering and using the harvest with expert practitioners and joint authors of Food from your Forest Garden.

This course is full.
With Martin Crawford and Caroline Aitken
Martin Crawford

Martin Crawford

Martin is Director of the Agroforestry Research Trust, a non-profit-making charity that researches into temperate agroforestry and all aspects of plant cropping and uses, with a focus on tree, shrub and perennial crops. It produces several publications and a quarterly journal, and sells plants and seeds from its forest gardens (link is external). He is a director of ‘Gaia’, a Trust formed by James Lovelock to further his work.

He has had broad and varied horticultural/agricultural experience over the last 25 years – he has worked for the Yarner Trust in North Devon, teaching small-scale organic agriculture; grown food for a small hotel on the Isle of Iona; restored the walled gardens of a manor house in mid-Devon; and run his own organic market garden and tree nursery in South Devon. Martin writes books and edits a quarterly journal, Agroforestry News. His book Creating a Forest Garden – the forest gardening ‘bible’ – was published in 2010. His other books include Cherries: Production and Culture, Directory of Apple Cultivars, Directory of Pear Cultivars, Peaches and Apricots, Plums: Production, Culture and Cultivar Directory, Currants and Gooseberries, Blackberries and Raspberries, Chestnuts: Production and Culture, Hazelnuts: Production and Culture, Walnuts: Production and Culture, Bamboos, Ground Cover Plants, Nitrogen-fixing Plants for Temperate Climates, Timber Trees for Temperate Climates, Edible Plants for Temperate Climates,Useful Plants for Temperate Climates, Plants for Hedging, Plants for Basketry, Bee Plants and Dye Plants. His latest book, How to Grow Perennial Vegetables , was published in 2012.

Caroline Aitken

Caroline Aitken

Caroline is a permaculture teacher and runs Whitefield Permaculture design consultancy. She teaches and speaks at venues around the UK and is passionate about soil regeneration, agroecology and healthy, sustainable food. She has previously worked in horticulture, small-scale farming, green catering, illustration and design.

Caroline currently lives on a smallholding with her family on the edge of Dartmoor, Devon where they produce fruit, vegetables, honey, eggs and firewood for their home. She trained and worked with Patrick Whitefield (author of The Earth Care Manual) for several years and co-authored Food From Your Forest Garden with Martin Crawford.

If you would like to book onto one of our short courses, you will need to create an account. This is a simple process of choosing a username, email address and password. Once you have created an account you will receive a verification email. Please click on the verification link within to have full access to the site and to make your booking. (You may need to  check your spam folder if you do not see this email.)  We will email you confirmation of your payment and any further communication about your course application.

Residential accommodation for "Changing the Frame"  is at Higher Close, a 20 minute walk from Schumacher College. All meals will be provided at the college.

A place can not be guaranteed unless we receive your deposit or payment on your chosen course. If you would like to apply for a bursary, please do this before making your course application.
 

Short Course Bursaries create an opportunity for an individual to experience the powerful transformative learning by joining a course that assists the participant to inspire their wider community and benefits from the participant’s own unique contribution. It is our hope that our bursaries support a wide cross section of participation on our short course programme. The number of bursaries available is limited, competition is strong and funding is not always available for every short course. Please be aware that most bursaries are in the region of 10% – 20% of the course fee so please be prepared to raise funding from other sources.  A bursary award is not intended to cover travel or incidental expenses.

Applications are viewed on a case-by-case basis and we are unable to enter into discussions on any decisions. We generally have many more applications for bursaries than we have funding available. We can only offer one bursary per person per year and priority is given to those who have not attended the college or received a bursary before. To help us support as many people as possible, please only apply if you would be unable to attend the course without a bursary.

How to apply for a bursary

Six weeks before the course is due to start all bursary applications will be considered and responded to.  If successful you will be required to accept our Bursary Terms and Conditions.

Please answer the following:

  1. What does a bursary mean to you?
  2. How will your attendance on this course benefit the wider community?
  3. If your financial situation justifies you applying for a bursary, how much are you able to contribute towards attending this course?
     

Please be prepared to supply an appropriate reference in support of your application.