Courses Overview >> Short courses >> Organic Gardening for soil health: A beginner’s guide to growing soils for healthy produce and people

Organic Gardening for soil health: A beginner’s guide to growing soils for healthy produce and people

Henri's Field at Schumacher College
Key Info: 
  • Learn how to grow different plants together in a way that benefits them
  • Learn how to create healthy compost
  • Harvest organic nutrient rich tasty vegetables and cook them

With Jane Gleeson, Colum Pawson and Julia Ponsonby

Fee: 
£ 375.00
Course fees include all vegetarian meals, field trips, materials and all teaching sessions. The programme will run from Friday afternoon to Sunday evening and includes two nights private accommodation.
If you would like to take this course as a non-residential participant, please call us on Tel: +44 (0) 1803 847237. A proportion of your course fee will go towards supporting the work of the Schumacher horticulture team.

Traditional growing has often used methods that harm the soil and its many inhabitants and contribute to environmental problems. The good news is that it is easy to garden and grow food in such a way as to enhance biodiversity, create healthy and beautiful gardens and help put carbon back into the soil. Under guidance of the gardens team at Schumacher College you can discover how we grow food and flowers whilst regenerating the ecosystem. You will learn about how to grow different plants together in a way that benefits them all; how to create healthy compost; bring wildlife back and have a beautiful and highly productive garden. We will sow seeds, make compost, harvest organic nutrient rich tasty vegetables and cook them in our famous kitchens and eat together in a complete ‘fork to fork’ experience.

A proportion of your course fee will go towards supporting the work of the Schumacher horticulture team.

*The Booking Deadline gives us an accurate idea of course participant numbers at approximately 6 weeks before the course is due to run, at which point we confirm the course, add additional time for people to book on or cancel the course. We encourage people to register early for courses as places are limited.

With Jane Gleeson, Colum Pawson and Julia Ponsonby
Jane Gleeson

Jane Gleeson

Jane graduated in Medical Sciences at Cambridge University in 1990 and spent over ten years working in the NHS mostly within the field of mental health. She also studied theology, looking at religion and mental health. 15 years ago she started gardening and soon was completely hooked. “I was simply bowled over by plants and how endless fascinating they are”. She studied and worked at Royal Botanic Gardens Kew for three years and then taught Horticulture at Hadlow College in Kent. Before coming to Schumacher she taught part time whilst running her own local garden maintenance business.

Colum Pawson

Colum Pawson

Colum assists in managing the growing areas around Schumacher College and teaching our horticulture students. Born in Glastonbury, Somerset, Colum admits he is rarely happier than when in a muddy field. He has run a number of small agriculture businesses and also worked as a freelance horticulture consultant. He has run a market garden, worked with community supported agriculture, spent a year as part of an intentional community at Radford Mill, near Bristol, and WOOFed (worked on an organic farm) his way around France and Spain. His spare time is spent walking with his wife and two children, singing and improving his unicycling.

Julia Ponsonby

Julia has been at the College since it opened in 1991 when she was a student on the very first course (Gaia Theory 1991).  As well as producing delicious meals for staff and students she has written a cookbook, Gaia's Kitchen, which won a Gourmand World Cookbook award for best vegetarian cookbook.   She originally came to the College to deepen her knowledge of ecology so as to become a more effective member of the Green Party.

Before moving to Devon she worked for Westminster City Council and the medical charity Lepra and shestudied Social Anthropology and Philosophy at the University of East Anglia. ‘I have always loved cooking, but never thought I’d end up as a professional cook! Only at Schumacher College under the banner of team work and love of good fresh local food could I have enjoyed catering for so long. It’s exciting to see the importance of food (preparation, sourcing and growing) being put at the forefront of some of the cutting edge movements of today – the Transition movement and the Slow Food movement – and to realise that as a learning ground for holistic cooks, the College kitchen has a lot to contribute.’

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.

Help & Enquiries

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+ 44 (0) 1803 847212