Our schedule of events is rich with opportunity, and it changes often. You’ll find many good, info-packed workshops to help you with your gardens, as well as terrific craft and foodie classes. Click on the SIGN UP NOW link on any individual workshop to register. Don’t delay because they fill quickly. This list is chronological.
Here’s how it works: Register online, in the store or by phone to reserve your spot; classes fill quickly. All workshop materials are included in the class cost, unless otherwise stated. Prepayment is required when registering; debit and credit cards are accepted. Click the link on the workshop or call 602-279-9510 to register.
Cancellation policy: No refunds or store credits will be issued if you can’t attend a class. Instructors work in advance to prepare materials and they are paid whether or not you attend. No exceptions. You are welcome to send someone in your place. Please let us know in advance.
Workshops & Events
Classes are held at our shop at The Newton, 300 W. Camelback Rd. Phoenix, AZ 85013. 602.279.9510
This is a two-part workshop. Saturday April 29, 10:30 a.m. & Saturday, May 13, 10:30 a.m. SOLD OUT. This Garden Totem workshop is one of our most popular projects. Musette Young and Deb Betz, have created new, exciting designs for this class. Your own handcrafted totem will make a big statement in your yard or garden. In this class, you will build your a three-foot-tall garden totem from clay. This project includes five wheel-thrown pieces that you embellish and decorate. Then you form divider “beads” and flat discs to go between the main pieces. Musette and Deb will take you through the process of creating totem shapes, making a finial for the top, and the best techniques for constructing pieces that will fit over a rebar support post. Once you create the pieces, they’ll go off for the first kiln firing. Come back for part two of your class on May 13 to glaze the totem pieces. Everything then goes into the kiln for a second firing. Musette and Deb will return your project, along with a three-foot piece of rebar so you can install your totem in the garden. Plan on two, four-hour classes. SIGN UP NOW.
Sunday, April 30, Noon. Desert gardening really is all about creating beautiful outdoor environments while conserving water. Learning about desert trees and plants and creating gardens full of texture, color and interest year-round is possible by choosing native and low-water plants that thrive here in the low desert. Choosing the right plant for the right place is key to your success. Katie Coates of PaloOco Design will be here to show you how you can create lush and colorful landscaping using water-wise plants. She will cover topics that include an overview of soil and irrigation with discussion of water-wise plants, plants for butterflies and hummingbirds, and site design considerations. Bring your questions, Katie will make time to answer them. This is a two-hour class. SIGN UP NOW.
Saturday, May 6, 10:30 a.m. At many points in a woman’s life she faces female-related health issues. While there are dozens of over-the-counter medicines, there are lots of ways to smooth these challenges with the proper use of herbs. Clinical herbalist and educator Kerry Amann continues her “Healthy Living” series by teaching about herbs to promote women’s health at many stages. Kerry will go over herbs that relieve symptoms from many ailments, including PMS, anxiety and bloating. She’ll also teach about using herbs to for the transition through menopause to post menopause. Bring your questions. You will leave with recipes, recommendations for herb sources and samples of an herbal tea designed specifically for women. This is a two-hour class. SIGN UP NOW.
Sunday, May 7, Noon. Adding eye-catching accents to your patio and yard is a snap with containers that overflow with bright plants. Palo Oco landscape specialist Katie Coates will be here to share her tips for planting and maintaining successful containers. Katie will cover such topics as design basics, color coordination, a list of the best plants for containers, soil selection and planting tips, plus care for flowering color pots. Use Katie’s suggestions and tips and your seasonal pots will look great year-round. You will go home with loads of helpful printed information and a few lucky people will win the demonstration containers. This is a two-hour class. SIGN UP NOW.
Sunday, May 14, Noon – As we head into May, our gardens and markets are full of fresh produce begging to be preserved for the rest of the year. Many of us have fond memories of our moms and canning, but most of us don’t have a clue about how it is done. Gardener and cook extraordinaire Gregory Ware will be here to demystify the science of canning. He will outline the various methods of canning including water bath, pressure, acid and non acid, plus how to know what technique is appropriate for vegetables, meats, fruits and jams. As part of this workshop you will get a copy of Gregory’s brochure outlining in detail his favorite canning methods. This is a two-hour class. SIGN UP NOW.
Saturday, May 20, 10:30 a.m. Add a touch of sophisticated design to your garden with a set of five stylistic orbs. Local artist and instructor Yvonne Allen will be here to teach this new hands-on project. Using wire and hefty glass beads everyone will make up to five orbs that vary in size from five to 10 inches. Your orbs and can hang from a tree – where they will catch a breeze – or nestle among plants. Please bring a pair of soft, garden-type gloves to protect your hands while working with the wire. All other materials are included. This is a four-hour workshop. SIGN UP NOW.
Sunday, May 21 11 a.m. These beautiful little glass-like flowers add new meaning to the word “recycle” because they are made from plastic take-out food containers. In this workshop Southwest Gardener partner Lynn Town will provide you with flower patterns and show you how to create your own, unique designs. You will learn fun ways to tint and color each petal and manipulate their shapes using a simple heat source. All tools and supplies are provided. Everyone will make three flowers. This is a four-hour workshop. SIGN UP NOW.
Saturday, May 27, 10:30 a.m. SOLD OUT. Many of you will remember the large Garden Tower Mosaic Class that was a perennial favorite at our original SWG location. Mosaic master Dave Jarvinen has reworked the Mosaic Tower project to take less time (yeah, no aching back!) and to fit nicely in your garden or an inside niche space. You’ll build your mosaic design with porcelain tiles supplied in a wide variety of colors. Dave will teach basic mosaic cutting and assembly techniques, including grouting. It’s always a good idea to come to this class with a design in mind, and Dave will help you make it a reality. Your finished tower will measure about 20 inches tall, 10 inches wide and about 1 inch deep. The tower will be mounted in a custom metal base (included) with an 8- by 10-inch footprint. This is a six-hour class. SIGN UP NOW.
Sunday, May 28, Noon to 3 pm. Not a week goes by that a customer doesn’t tell us what good luck they’ve had Gregory Ware’s locally grown, organic plants. It may be late May, but Gregory will bring plants that like warm soil and hot days. Come see which of his hearty, organic vegetables and herbs you want to try for summer.
Saturday, June 3, 10:30 a.m. A wreath is a symbol of welcome for family and friends and this Southwest-style wreath offers warm greetings. You will start with a simple twig ring then tuck in a selection of high quality faux succulents. Next, add a splash of bold color with red glass chili peppers that are hand blown by Phoenix artist Jason Chakravarty. Finish it all with a rustic piece of burlap. Your multi-season wreath will adorn your home for years. This is a three-hour workshop. SIGN UP NOW.
Sunday, June 4, Noon. An inviting yard and outdoor living space makes you happy and adds value to your property. Well-designed spaces also offer color, texture, shade and beauty, creating a place to enjoy your outdoor room as much as your indoor living areas. Coming up with a design that fulfills your dreams, makes sense in our low-desert environment and works within your budget can be a challenge. In this class, landscape designer Katie Coates of PaloOco Design will help you create a plan that fits your vision and lifestyle. Katie will cover design fundamentals, an overview of landscape styles, hardscape options, how to select the right plants for the right place, and a basic “how to” for measuring and designing your own hand-drawn plan. With the heat of June just beginning, now is the perfect time to start organizing all your landscaping ideas and dreams into a cohesive design for fall installation. This is a three-hour class. SIGN UP NOW.
Healthy Living: Herbal Remedies For Allergies & Sniffles
Saturday, June 10, 10:30 a.m. Winter rains brought us a lot of blooms and pollen this year and we all seem to be sniffling and sneezing. Never fear, our favorite herbalist Kerry Amann will be here to help with all things respiratory. Kerry will discuss herbs that can be used to remedy allergies, asthma and seasonal colds. Each participant will take home a sample to ease the allergies. This is a two-hour class. SIGN UP NOW.
Sunday, June 11, Noon. The winter greens in your garden may have bolted but you can grow healthful sprouts and microgreens indoors. Microgreens and sprouts are nature’s own super food. The use of these incredibly nutritious greens in salads and stir fries is prolific, but many of us have no idea of the wide variety of tastes and textures that can be grown and harvested inside all summer. Gregory Ware will teach you safe, healthy techniques for growing microgreens and sprouts, including the best herb and veggie seeds to use. You’ll also learn how to easily add them to your every day diet. Each participant will go home with a tray for microgreens, a jar for sprouts and plenty of seeds for your first harvest. This is a two-hour class. SIGN UP NOW.
Friday, June 16, 10:30 a.m. Flowers help make the garden beautiful and this mosaic flower project will add lasting beauty and color to your garden or patio pots for many seasons. The flower form is a ceramic piece measuring approximately 10” across. You will mosaic the flower form with colorful glass tiles in your choice of colors and design. The completed flower mosaic attaches to a custom stand for display. All materials and supplies included with class fee. This is a four-hour workshop. SIGN UP NOW.
Sunday June 18, Noon to 3 p.m. This is the plant sale for all the hard-core gardeners who don’t let the heat stifle their gardening efforts. Gregory Ware will be here with a selection of organic, heat-loving transplants including summer tolerant herbs, hot peppers, ornamental peppers, lemongrass and mosquito repelling citronella grass, which thrives in our hot climate. You’ll also find goji berries, caper plants, and Malabar spinach. Even better, check out the herbs that are succulents – kind of unusual. Great news, plant lovers, this event will be held indoors, so don’t let a few days of searing temperatures scare you. We’ll be cool and comfy all day.
Saturday, June 24, 10:30 a.m. Artist Yvonne Allen has put her talents to work to create an eye-catching sun face. Each mosaic sun will feature Yvonne’s signature handmade tile facial features. Cheeks, eyes and brows, lips and nose will define your sun’s personality and mood. You’ll complete your project using a selection of colorful hand-glazed ceramic tile to fill in the face, sun rays and sky. The size of the completed sun will be approximately 12 inches in diameter and your sun will be ready to hang. Enjoy a day of mosaic art while learning basic mosaic skills. All materials and tools provided. This is a six-hour workshop. SIGN UP NOW.
Sunday, June 25, Noon. Chutney, mustard and flavored vinegar can turn a regular meal into a bowl full of flavor and zest. They add personality and boldness to everything from meat to tofu, vegetables and fruit. Grains love them and you will, too. Our favorite cook and gardener Gregory Ware will be here to show you how to combine simple ingredients to create these flavorful and wholesome condiments (no preservatives or extra chemicals). Whether you are planning a meal of hamburgers on the grill or a grain-based vegetable entree you will find that the right condiment can turn an ordinary meal into a remarkable feast. Gregory will demystify the process of making these tasty condiments. He’ll also share ideas for changing them with different herbs and fruit for seasonal dishes. We will sample a lot and you will take home many recipes and tasty ideas. This is a three-hour class. SIGN UP NOW.