The course for 2024 is now sold out. Please email [email protected] to be added to the waiting list for 2025 dates.

Great Dixter is a renowned and innovative garden that depends on a high degree of craftsmanship to maintain and develop its year round display. This is an advanced course, exploring and teaching the skills necessary for establishing, developing and managing a garden in this style.

Teaching takes place monthly through the year from February to January, focusing on specific seasonal tasks and on understanding what’s happening in the garden at that time. The teaching is delivered through seminars, demonstrations and critical appraisal of the garden. There will be opportunities for discussion and to ask questions.

The course is suitable for students with some gardening experience whether as a keen amateur gardener or garden professional. While the course covers the fundamentals, the aim is to extend students’ plant knowledge, enhance their technical abilities and give them confidence to experiment and explore their own gardening practice.

Crocosmia lucifer in the Peacock garden

Course topics

The course will include the following topics, each taught and explored in the style of Great Dixter:

  • History, philosophy and design of Great Dixter
  • Soil preparation and planting
  • Propagation by seed, cuttings and division
  • Supporting, staking, and tying-in plants
  • Planting for succession, and border management
  • Pruning in winter and summer
  • Shade gardening
  • Pot displays
  • Meadow gardening
  • Exotic garden
  • Bedding displays
  • Bulbs: using and planting
  • Tender plants, growing and protecting
  • Self-sowers
  • Composts and growing media
  • Cut flowers and vegetables
  • Hedges and topiary
  • Developing borders


Tutors for the course are Edward Flint and Coralie Thomas

This course will be led by Edward Flint, Coralie Thomas and experienced members of the Dixter Garden and nursery teams including Fergus Garrett, Michael Wachter and Michael Morphy. It will help attendees gain an understanding of what is happening in the garden and the specific tasks that are undertaken on a month by month basis. This will include tutorials, seminars, demonstrations and critical appraisal of the garden, as well as question and answer sessions.

Attendees qualify for 1 year’s free entry into the garden for you and a friend and 10% off of plant sales in the Nursery (not online).

Lunch and refreshments are included

Dates for 2024 Art and Craft of Gardening:

Term 1 : 7th Feb, 6th March, 3rd April, 1st May

Term 2: 5th June, 10th July, 7th Aug, 4th Sept

Term 3: 2nd October, 13th November, 4th Dec, 8 Jan 2025

Course Price: £1980  (Includes lunches, refreshments and one year’s free entry into the garden for 2 people and a 10% discount at our on-site nursery and shop). )

Payments split into 3 terms.

Term 1 payment: £833.33 (including non-refundable deposit) Please note that payment for term 1 guarantees your place on all 3 terms.

Terms 2 and 3 £573.34

If you would like further information, please email: [email protected] or call 01797 334042

Funding towards these courses may be available from the Professional Gardeners Trust. For information on how to apply, please visit: