Programme 2020

Monthly Programme 2020

7th January 2020
Reflections on Organic Growing

Claire Ratinon is an organic grower and writer, previously based in Hackney, now in East Sussex. She has worked in a range of roles from growing salad on a small organic site in Stoke Newington to delivering growing workshops throughout London.  She is passionate about the act of growing plants – especially edible ones – and the potential for this to be nourishing, connecting and healing.

She has been invited to share her growing journey and experiences in talks for organisations including The Garden Museum, the Royal College of Art and Abergavenny Food Festival.  She recently presented two features on Radio 4’s Gardeners Question Time.

You can read an article about her, Garden Talent, in Gardens Illustrated September 2019

4th February 2020
A patio jungle in Barnsbury

Juan Carlos Cure talks about his exotic garden which he has created in an impossibly small space. He was featured on Gardener’s World and you can see the feature here: Islington Jungle. 
We have a plant list for the garden which you can view and download HERE.

3rd March 2020
AGM, social and seed swap

This year we combine our AGM with our yearly social event plus a seed swap. Please join us and bring along a plate of savoury or sweet food to share and, if you have, some spare seeds. We will provide the wine. After a short annual report, we will be swapping seeds, gardening tips and ideas for community planting and have a bite to eat and a glass to drink. And for anyone with ideas for future events, you are very welcome to bring these to the meeting too.

7th April 2020 CANCELLED due to Covid-19
The need for nature in an urban environment
Annie Chipchase, Hackney ecologist
The plants that populate our urban areas are generally, much loved and appreciated. The value of close proximity to nature has long been recognised as towns and cities started to grow. Now, the growing climate crisis has thrown a spotlight on the natural world, particularly trees as a potential saviour.

5th May 2020 – 7.30pm
Gardeners Question Time
Our first zoom meeting during lockdown was a fabulous Gardners question time when we all learned a thing or two from one another’s experience. An audio podcast is available which you can listen to HERE.

2nd June 2020
Practical gardening
A zoom meeting featuring a series of practical videos and each followed by group discussion. Topics included Clematis, dead heading, sharpening secateurs and the Chelsea Chop. These are the links to the various videos we discussed:Clematis with Raymond Evison:

Making a self watering plan pot:

How to sharpen a pair of secateurs

“How to deadhead a rose” from David Austin Roses:

How to do the Chelsea Chop:

Highgrove: Discover its sustainable secrets:

7th July 2020
Virtual walkabout 
A virtual tour of four member’s gardens: Juliet and Tigger show us their gardens, Kirsty reveals her indoor farm and Cec takes us round the garden she would have been opening for the National Garden Scheme. There is a private You Tube link to see these gardens – please email us for the link if you would like to see them.

4th August 2020
Multicultural Vegetable growing 
Anton Rosenfeld of Garden Organic revealed the stories for how various immigrants have brought seeds with them and their success and failure of adapting these to grow in this climate. A truly fascinating speaker – this meeting is available as a private You Tube link to members and friends. Please email if you would like it.
You can get lots of growing advice, buy seeds and listen to some of the stories of the people interviewed by Anton and his team on their brilliant website:

1st September 2020
Nathalie Puget Garden Design 
Garden designer and Capel Manor tutor Nathalie Puget offers an overview of the professional’s approach to designing gardens, including tips and tricks of the trade. Specifically some planting design tips and how to make the most of your garden space however small or large or seemingly difficult it might be.
Please email us if you would like the link to attend this meeting, we are offering guests one free online meeting.

6th October 2020
Mark Ridsdill Smith of Vertical Veg
Mark is an expert in growing in small spaces. He will be giving us top tips for growing in containers plus a masterclass in setting up a home made wormery.

3rd November 2020
Andrew Luke, head gardener at English Heritage’s Wrest Park 
Andrew will give us a video tour of some of the work he has been doing at Wrest Park. He will follow this with a practical demonstration of how to take hardwood cuttings, using different techniques to cover various different types of plants