I love to go to classes–gardening classes, cooking classes, Bible classes, craft classes, art classes–really, just about any classes! (That’s how I’ve wound up with two masters degrees and credit from at least nine different colleges, plus certification as a Master Gardener and a Master Naturalist.) Because I especially enjoy gardening classes, I always go over and above the continuing education requirement for maintaining my Master Gardener certification.
Last night I went to a class on container vegetable gardening at The Growing Place in Aurora. It was a bit of a hike, but I figured it would be worth it because the class was free. Yes, free! I love free classes best of all. A friend came with me, and we got there early so we could look around this large and beautiful nursery that was new to both of us.
Then we made our way to the class location. Right away we got to sample some tasty food and drink made with garden vegetables and herbs. I was delighted that the recipes were printed for us to take. It was like getting a little cooking class bonus along with the gardening class. How delightful! Did I mention that this class was free?
The class itself was excellent. I appreciated the specific plant variety recommendations, especially of peppers that are good for containers. I definitely have to try growing Giant Marconi instead of bell peppers, and Cajun Belle for a little spice.
It was also interesting to see how many different vegetables could go in a single container if their growth habit is appropriate. You can follow the same formula as for ornamental containers: a thriller, a filler, and a spiller. In the container planted as a demonstration after the talk, the thriller is Ruby Red Chard, which grows to be 18-24″ tall. The filler is a 4-cell pack of lettuces. The spillers are Blue Lake bush beans and two tomatoes planted at an angle so they’ll grow over the sides of the pot. The red one is Fantastico and the yellow one is . . . I don’t know–I lost the tag! [I will check and update this post later.]
I was very happy with the class, and I thought that was going to be it for me. Anyone who wanted to plant a container could buy the items and do one there, but I was not planning to do that. And then the teacher said we should look under our seats to see who had won the demonstration container she’d just planted. It was I! FANTASTICO!
I was super excited that I got to take this great container garden home with me. I can’t wait to see for myself how planting the tomatoes at an angle leaning out of the pot will work. I got refreshments, recipes, and a free container garden–how classy is that! I was so happy that I treated myself to a new scented geranium, almond. Thank you, The Growing Place!