I regularly give talks to gardening clubs and societies all over the South-West and further afield, and I’m available for bookings for a reasonable fee plus travel expenses.
Please scroll down for the full list of current topics, then contact me by email for more details and to make a booking.
Gardening without Plastic ~ A World Under our Feet ~ Heritage vegetables ~ A Rogue’s Gallery for Gardeners ~ Growing Veg in Small Spaces ~ Year Round Veg Growing
GARDENING WITHOUT PLASTIC
The thousands of tons of plastic polluting our oceans and beaches are having a devastating effect on marine ecosystems. Yet UK gardeners currently get through about 500 million plastic pots every single year – as well as countless plastic plant labels, seed trays, bedding plant trays, polythene cloches….
Ever since 2017 I have been working to reduce, and where possible eliminate the plastic from my garden. I’ve written about my experiences each month throughout 2019 for The Garden (the RHS journal) and this talk is all about how you can too can garden without plastic.
Available as a hands-on demonstration of different plastic-free gardening methods (this involves potting compost so can be slightly messy!), or as a slideshow.
A WORLD UNDER OUR FEET
We know more about the surface of the Moon than we do about what goes on in the soil under our feet. Yet your garden soil underpins everything you do: it governs how your plants grow, which plants will thrive in your garden, and what pests and diseases you’re most likely to come across. Learn to look after it and treat it with the respect it deserves, and your garden will thrive.
This talk is a peep into a magical world in which plants ‘talk’ to each other and ants are giants. I’ll also let you know how you can best look after your soil so it can look after your plants. Following the slideshow, I can also demonstrate how to carry out a basic soil test – with the chance for club members to get their soil tested, too
Heritage vegetables have been handed down from generation to generation, rich with history and sometimes with some quirky stories attached, too.
This talk explores the wonderful history, flavours and stories behind our oldest vegetable varieties, and looks at what exactly we mean by a ‘heritage’ vegetable: superior flavour? a good story? or something else altogether?
A ROGUE’S GALLERY FOR GARDENERS
A talk packed with practical advice on organic ways of tackling pests and diseases, including ways to prevent them from attacking your plot in the first place, and how to limit the damage if and when they do.
I’ll give first-hand examples from my own long experience in fighting off the most commonly encountered pests on both ornamental and edible plants, rounding off with the top 10 pests and diseases encountered by the RHS Advice Service each year, and how to cope if you encounter them in your garden.
GROWING VEG IN SMALL SPACES
Gardens are getting smaller and smaller these days – but that doesn’t mean you have to limit your dreams to grow your own food.
This slideshow is packed with ideas I’ve collected from shows, by visiting other people’s gardens and by trying it out in my own garden.
You’ll hear about techniques such as vertical gardening, keyhole gardening and square-foot gardening to make the most of even the tiniest spaces, plus recommendations on the best varieties to grow and advice on how to pack the most veg into the least space imaginable.
YEAR-ROUND VEG GROWING
It’s easy enough to grow veg in the summer – but what about keeping your garden productive through winter, and, even worse, the dreaded ‘hungry gap’ of early spring?
This talk tells you how to maximise the produce from your garden all year round, so you have something to pick every day of the year from January to December. I’ll explain clever techniques for extending the season at both ends, plus share my tips for the best crops to grow so you never go short of delicious fresh produce for your plate.
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Mrs Sheelagh Commin said:
We’re very interested in a talk on Gardening without plastic for Lympstone Garden Club (we’re a village near Exmouth). We hold our meeting on the third Tuesday of the month at 7.30 in the evening and we are looking for a date in September 2020 onwards.
Our club is attempting to go ‘plastic free’ or at least to stop using single use plastic. I came to your talk at Forde Abbey a couple of years ago so know what to expect.
Would you be willing to give a talk?
Suki Commin Chairman Lympstone Garden Club
Hello Suki, yes I’d love to come and talk to the Garden Club – thank you for asking me. If you could contact me by email via the link above we can discuss a date etc (if you can’t access the link my email is sally(dot)nex(at)btinternet(dot)com).
Anne Robson said:
I emailed a couple of days ago about a booking we have with you. I am the new leader for the Warminster u3a gardening group and I am told we have a booking with you for November 2nd. I am anxious to check you are still available and the costs so I can advertise to my members.
Hello Anne, hopefully you will now have received my email in reply! Thanks for getting in touch, all the best, Sally
Nicola Bennetts said:
I’ve sent you a couple of emails about the Bitton Garden Club. We’d very much like you to come to talk to us. Can we fix a date please.
Hello Nicola, I’m sorry – bit behind on emails at the moment! I will get back to you asap and let you know availability. Thanks for your patience! Sally
Jill Short said:
Bickleigh, Roborough and District Garden Society, speaker organiser Jill Short here. You emailed me straight back with your availability on 3/11/21 and I replied on 4/11/21 with possible dates for your talk to us but I have heard nothing since. Please can you let me know if any of the dates are doable for you as I’m trying to finalise next year’s programme.
Carol Chandler said:
I’m a committee member for the Collingbourne and Everleigh gardening club, do you availability for a talk on November 23rd 2023 please?
Hello Carol, thanks for getting in touch! I am afraid I am fully booked now for 2023 and taking bookings for 2024 only. If you’d like to get in touch via the email link above I’m sure we can sort out a date if you’re able to plan that far ahead? Thanks and best wishes, Sally