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A Head Gardeners Year – Part 4




Mark Saunders has been Head Gardener of Fittleworth House since 1997.  An experienced lecturer and trainer, he is passionate about photography, and sharing his skills, to encouraging more people into careers in horticulture.

The venue, Fittleworth House, was built in 1720 of locally quarried stone. The garden has magnificent trees, a half-acre walled kitchen garden with a wide range of fruit, vegetables, herbs and flowers in two ‘long borders’. Also there are rose borders, a fountain garden, croquet lawn and much more, so plenty of variety to give scope for the workshops.

This programme of four workshops will be a combination of theory and practical.  You will work through a year in the garden from the Head Gardener’s perspective, how he plans his year, budgeting and purchasing, seasonal aspects, maintenance and equipment, designing and planting plans, propagating and pruning.  The core activities each season, and planning for the next.

Every session will include some plant identification, some Health & Safety and a tour of the garden.

Feb 15th Winter – pruning, ground preparation, tool and machinery maintenance, seed sowing, plant identification, dahlias, etc.

May 10th Spring – vegetable planting, pruning, annuals, weeds, planting up pots and urns, plant identification etc.

July 26th Summer – keeping on top of the garden, machinery use, harvesting, weeds, plant identification, propagation, dahlias etc.

Oct 25th Autumn – garden planning and design, dahlias, composting, leaves, greenhouse maintenance, plant identification etc.

Ideally members will book all four sessions, or blocks of two so that they benefit from the continuity of reviewing their previous work.  We plan to repeat this course again in 2019, so it should be possible to cover missed sessions at that time and cover the whole year.

The cost to members is £35.  Non members will pay £45.

Tea and coffee will be provided, but please bring a packed lunch.  Secateurs will be needed for most of the sessions, and a notepad and camera for every session.

Event Details

Date: October 25, 2018

Start time: 10:00

End time: 16:00

Venue: Fittleworth House, Pulborough, West Sussex