Our hands-on workshops teach the San Francisco Bay Area to garden sustainably. Join our gardening experts each week to learn how to grow food, conserve water with native and drought-tolerant plants, and build soil with compost.
Each weekend, we offer workshops to the public on a wide range of garden topics. Our workshops teach people to garden sustainably and our incredible instructors are gardening experts with years of experience. We believe in hands-on education and design our workshops to be dynamic and educational.
Our workshops will teach you to use less water, cultivate healthy soil, and create biodiversity in your backyard and on your balcony. Every workshop is appropriate for a beginning gardener unless otherwise noted, but even experienced gardeners will leave with new knowledge and skills.
LEARN TO GARDEN!
Below are the types of workshops we offer in our urban teaching garden. To get up to date information and register for workshops, click on the button above.
1st Saturday of every month, 10am - 12pm, FREE
We know that the key to a healthy garden and good soil is high quality compost. Not only does it close the environmental loop, and serve as a great teaching tool about all the invisible activity in a garden, but it is the core of what we do. We have been teaching San Francisco how to compost since we opened in 1990 and would love to show you the magic of black gold in one of our free Saturday workshops.
(Note: July workshop is on July 8th, September workshop is on Sept. 9th)
THE EDIBLE GARDEN
2nd Saturday of every month, 10am - 12pm, $25
Growing food in your own backyard, whether it be a small herb patch or a full high yield garden, is incredibly satisfying and fun for all ages. Here in San Francisco, we can grow food year round in our mild climate. Join us each month as we talk about what to do in your backyard garden at that exact time of year to ensure success. We'll cover pests you might encounter, how to plan what to grow that will thrive, and answer all your food-growing questions! This class is good for beginner and more experienced gardeners alike.
(Note: August workshop is on Aug. 5th, September workshop is on Sept. 16th, no October workshop)
SFPUC SPONSORED WORKSHOPS
Various Saturdays throughout the year
The San Francisco Public Utilities Commission sponsors eleven public workshops at GFE each year that focus on water conservation and pollution prevention. Each spring, summer, and fall we offer the three-part "Sustainable Garden Series" which focuses on designing, creating, and caring for a beautiful, drought-tolerant, and chemical-free garden. Additionally, we offer "Rainwater Harvesting" twice each winter.
The SFPUC provides its customers with high quality, efficient and reliable water, power, and sewer services in a manner that is inclusive of environmental and community interests, and that sustains the resources entrusted to its care. Learn more about the SFPUC at www.sfwater.org.
GARDEN SKILL CLASSES
Various Saturdays every month
We are San Francisco's garden school, teaching a wide range of gardening courses year round for gardeners of all skill levels. We believe everyone can learn how to garden, and bring in expert guest instructors and educators to lead engaging and hands on gardening classes so that you can feel confident getting your hands in the dirt!
Fridays throughout the year
Are you interested in bringing a group out to teaching garden for a private and customized work day? Our staff will work with you to design a workshop and curriculum to best suit your needs and objectives in our beautiful outdoor demonstration garden. Visit our group workday page to learn more information and request a date.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Do you ever cancel workshops?
We try our best not to cancel, but if the weather forecast suggests it is very likely to be pouring rain, we will cancel the workshop and notify attendees by 5pm the day before. We do hold classes in drizzling weather, however, so come prepared with rain gear. We are also occasionally forced to cancel workshops due to other unforeseen circumstances. In any case, we will happily register you for another workshop or refund your workshop fee.
Do I need to pre-register for workshops?
We do accept day-of registrations, just be sure to sign in with a garden staff member when you arrive. If a class is full but you are interested in attending, please arrive a few minutes early and we should be able to get you in.
What are my transportation/parking options?
Although there is street parking available, it can be challenging on weekends. Public transportation is frequent and nearby, so it's a great option! The 6, 36, 43, and 44, bus lines and the N Judah all run within a few blocks of the garden. Forest Hill Station is also nearby and you can take the 43 or 44 directly from there to the garden.
What should I bring to the workshop?
Classes are held outside in our teaching garden. We recommend bringing a hat and sunscreen, comfortable closed toed shoes, a full water bottle, and lots of layers. You may also want to bring a notebook to take notes on what you are learning and you are welcome to bring food and join us for a picnic lunch in the garden at noon.