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
Saturday, August 26, 10:30 p.m. The process of taking raw wool fibers (aka wool roving) and turning it into a lovely felted flower seems almost magical. In this workshop Southwest Gardener’s own Lynn Town will teach the fundamentals of wet felting and you will create two flowers of your own design. This is a fun and messy art form, so come prepared to release your inner flower child. These flowers can be a pin to dress up a piece of clothing; we like them on a hat or purse, but let your imagination run wild. All tools and lots of wool roving in yummy colors are provided. Please bring two towels and a nice, sharp pair of scissors. You may also want to bring an apron. This is a three-hour workshop. SIGN UP NOW.
Sunday, August 27, Noon. The most important step for a successful garden happens before you ever plant. Soil preparation is the key to having a healthy, prolific garden, yet it is a step that many people bypass. Local gardening guru Gregory Ware will demystify the mystery of good soil. He will take your through every step needed to prepare for your fall/winter garden. This class includes packages of enough locally produced organic fertilizer and soil sulfur to cover a 100 square foot garden. You’ll add your new-found knowledge of building healthy soil plus your own organic material such as compost or manure, and you will be set to grow! Check out our blog post on soil and water then come to this two-hour class. SIGN UP NOW.
Saturday, September 9, 10:30 a.m. SOLD OUT. There was so much interest and creativity creating dog portraits this summer we’re going to expand and help you make collage portraits for any critter you love. Learn to use torn and cut paper – magazine pages, maps, sheet music, etc – to create a strikingly realistic portrait of your favorite pet. There is no drawing skill needed for this project. Please bring an 8” by 10” photo of your favorite pet – you can print one at home right from your computer or take a photo to a copy center such as FedEx/Kinko’s or Staples and they can enlarge the photo for you. From that large print, we will show you how to use all kinds of paper to create a portrait that catches your “baby’s” true personality. This is a six-hour workshop. SIGN UP NOW.
Sunday, September 10, Noon. A gift of a homemade bottle of Kahlua or fruit cordial is a treasure to be savored. Rich, sweet and bursting with flavor, these liqueurs are a fabulous treat over crushed ice or as a flavoring in baked goods. Gregory Ware, our own “master of the kitchen,” will take you through the steps for making these festive liqueurs. Of course there will be recipes and sampling! This workshop will last about two and a half ours. SIGN UP NOW.
Friday, September 15 , 10:30 a.m. Plants are a great inspiration for mosaic design. Artist Dave Jarvinen has beautifully drawn on his love of nature to create this flora-inspired mosaic project. You will discover the joy of mixed-media mosaics using porcelain and glass tiles in this project. The contrast between matte and shiny will add depth, texture and interest to your panel. Your finished botanical panel will measure approximately 8” by 12”. All materials, instruction and tools are included in class fee. This is a six-hour workshop. Please bring a photo, drawing or other image for your design inspiration. SIGN UP NOW.
Saturday, September 16, 10:30 a.m. Our resident rock paint artist Stephanie Tomich has put together an adorable painted pot with matching pebbles. You will start by painting and decorating a 4 ½ inch by 4 inch pot. Next, you’ll create a set of three matching pebbles. The beautifully detailed mandala designs may look challenging but Stephanie will show you how to master a few techniques that make these intricate designs in a snap. She will share her tips for the best paints and tools to use, plus the best way to finish your rocks. This tone of Stephanie’s workshops is very Zen-like, which many people enjoy. This is a four-hour workshop. (Plants not included.) SIGN UP NOW.
Sunday, September 17, Noon to 3 p.m. – Sunday, September 17, noon to 3:00 p.m. This is the time to start your fall garden, so grower Gregory Ware will be here with a truckload of his healthy, organic vegetable and herb plants. Take this opportunity to snag some of Gregory’s locally grown unusual plant varieties. Will will update this post with a list of plants he’ll be bringing as we get closer to the Plant Sale date.
Saturday, September 23, 10:30 a.m. Alice Sweeney has been selling her pretty hand-crafted scarves at Southwest Gardener for years. Now she’s going to teach you how to make colorful silk scarves. Each participant will make two scarves and will go home with many ideas for more. The first scarf will use an ingenious product called dye paper that can be cut, torn and manipulated into all sorts of patterns and shapes. For your second scarf, Alice will teach you to manipulate the dyes from Sharpie markers. Come and create two scarves that compliment your favorite clothes. Or make one for yourself and one as a gift. All materials are included. This is a three-hour workshop. SIGN UP NOW.
Sunday, September 24, Noon. What a wonderful luxury to step outside your door and snip fresh herbs for your next meal. It’s a treat we can all enjoy. Our resident plant grower Gregory Ware will help you plant and will teach you to grow a plentiful pot that includes all the herb basics: parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme. Gregory will share best practices so your herbs will flourish and can harvest them all season long. This is a three-hour class, and you’ll want to bring your gardening gloves (or purchase them here ). Everyone will take home an herb pot that will flourish and provide flavor for upcoming holiday meals. This is a three-hour class. SIGN UP NOW.
Saturday, September 30, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. We get many questions about challenges in the garden that relate to bugs, noxious weeks and annoying critters. So we’ve planned a day that you can come in and our “big gun” – Gregory Ware – will work with you on all garden bugaboos. Gregory will listen to your questions, check out your chewed leaves and attempt to answer all your pest-related queries. You should bring samples or photos – a cut branch, an ugly insect (in a baggie or jar, please) – because it’s much easier to diagnose a problem when the offender or damage can be seen. This is a casual, walk-in event and you will likely learn lots from other people’s questions. Gregory will be in the store from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. It’s all FREE.
Sunday, October 1, Noon. Fall is our largest growing season in the desert southwest. Homegrown veggies taste better and recent studies show they are more nutritious. Local grower Gregory Ware will be here to share his considerable knowledge about fall and winter season gardening, choosing appropriate varieties, plant placement, pest issues, watering guidelines, and best practices for growing and harvesting. This is a very useful workshop for both first-time gardeners and seasoned growers. Each participant will take home four of Gregory’s wonderful organic veggie plants. Everyone is encouraged to share experiences and ask questions. This is a two-hour class, but sometimes goes longer because we want to answer all your questions. SIGN UP NOW.
Sunday October 8, Noon. This is a class that fills up every season. Gregory Ware will teach you the best practices for growing fresh and tasty greens in a container. Gregory Ware will teach you the best practices for growing fresh and tasty greens in a container you can keep right outside the kitchen door. You’ll learn planting and harvesting techniques that will ensure you enjoy three months of salads from just one planting. In this workshop you will plant and take home a generous mix of lettuces that will grow into a bounty of healthy meals. Fill your patio or balcony with pretty greens! This is a two-hour class. SIGN UP NOW.
Sunday, October 15, Noon to 3 p.m. – Fall planting season has started. Gregory Ware will be here with a selection of young appropriate bulbs (think saffron crocus and paperwhites), herb plants, and vegetable seedlings. His selection is likely to include: arugula, a wide variety of kales, a nice selection of broccoli and many assorted lettuce varieties. We will post a more complete list of varieties as the sale nears. You can also buy soils, organic fertilizers and controls, tools and shade cloth at the sale.