Workshop

The Soil Food Web Gardening and Growing Workshop

Soil Food Web Gardening and Growing is a new approach that recognises, understands, and harnesses the vital powers and skills of the microbial wonders of nature.  This workshop will explain who the microbes are and how they work and interact with your plants. This knowledge will enable you to eliminate pests and diseases and produce the most nutritious fruit and veg and the biggest brightest blooms

The workshop is largely hands-on with powerpoint used sparingly and there will be plenty of time for questions throughout the day.

An outline of your workshop:

9:15am
Welcome and orientation.
9:30am
Beneath the Cardboard.

Often overlooked, the geology (rocks and soils) and former land-use of No Dig. We will show you how to find the necessary maps and how to interpret them. We are talking microbial habitats here.

10:00am
The Soil Food Web and Plant Nutrition.

 We will describe the soil food web and the way in which soil microorganisms drive plant succession from bare earth to old growth forest. We will explore fungi:bacteria ratios, rhizophagy (love that word), the ‘poop-loop’ (and that!) and the basics of plant nutrition as provided by the microbes. Then we will introduce the stars of the show – the soil food web microbes!

11:00Am
How healthy is a soil?

In this practical session we will study the dig and no dig beds  and wider grounds at Rhizophyllia looking at colour, composition, structure, texture, and smell, and signs of microbial life. We will look for clues in the plants naturally germinating and take measures of pH and salinity. We will also look at the above ground foliar-related signs of a fully or poorly functioning soil food web.

12:00Pm
Hands-on with the microscopes taking a closer look at the microbes.

Looking under the microscopes at various examples of soil and compost.

1:00pm
Lunch.

Entirely plant based; stupendously and ridiculously delicious and filling. A chance also to wander freely through the gardens and allotment.

2:00pm
Plant nutrient deficiencies, pests and diseases, and BRIX.

In this session we will consider the conditions that enable pathogenesis in microorganisms and encourages pests. We will look afresh at the role of pathogens and how they seek out the weak and vulnerable plant. We will then prepare a range of shop-bought vegetables and fruit for BRIX testing – this is a measure of the nutrient density of the food you might buy. This session will illustrate how microbes working in harmony with plants deliver the highest nutrient density and in so doing protect plants from pests and diseases (pigeons and puppies excluded!), a soil food web perspective you won’t want to miss!

At 3pm there will be a short break for refreshments, and time to take a breath!

4:00pm
Rejuvenating degraded soil - common composting techniques, practices and practicalities

In this introductory session at the Compost Station we will discuss static composting and batch composting (thermophilic and JohnsonSu) using on-site examples. We will look at the C:N ratios of composting materials and discuss recipes for a crop of your choosing. We will also touch on extracts, teas and amendments.

5:00pm
Final thoughts and questions

For any clarification ahead of booking just email [email protected] or simply phone me on 07376 238608 and I’ll be pleased to help.

Full Day Workshop
9:15am to 5:15pm including lunch
£225pp

What people are saying about my workshops

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Everyone should attend the Rhizophyllia workshops. They are jam-packed with essential information about what constitutes a healthy soil and good compost, and how to best grow through the help of the soil microbes. Fascinating, real eye-opening stuff.
Lea Quai, allotmenteer at Roots Allotments, Bath.
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Eddie’s enthusiasm is so contagious – you will the Rhizophyllia workshop obsessed with everything relating to compost and hungry to learn more. This deeper knowledge of what goes on below the surface should be a staple for every grower who has interest in producing healthy disease-free and bountiful produce. The beautiful setting lures you into a deep calmness, added with a healthy dose of nourishmentfrom freshly picked produce for lunch too. I would highly recommend this workshop for every gardener. It might just be what your garden has been waiting for!
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I had the pleasure of attending the Full Day Composting Workshop; not only is the content utterly thrilling and exciting (wait til you see a nematode under the microscope!) but Eddie’s delivery and depth of knowledge along with his infectious manner makes the workshop unforgettable! Plus the location is just incredible – a real inspiration. And the plant-based lunch was divine. I am looking forward to to building on my own knowledge with the tools he has given me...and I have never been so excited by compost in all my life! I would highly recommend for everyone!’
Hannah, allotmenteer, Cirencester.