Successful Gardener Classes 2017

We are excited to welcome back Jeff Rieves, who has prepared an amazing line-up of classes for the New Year.  If you have never had the privilege of learning from such a seasoned agrarian, do yourself a favor and come out to one (or more) of these classes. You will leave encouraged, enthusiastic, and well prepared for your next venture into the wonderful world of backyard gardening!

Fresher food is healthier food. And you can’t get any fresher than food from your own back yard. Growing your own food is easy, it doesn’t have to take up a lot of space, and it can save you money.

Join Jeff Rieves, Horticulturist & former NC Cooperative Extension agent, for a season long session in the garden. Learn all about vegetable gardening, fruit plants, food garden design, and more! Wear your walking shoes as we will be touring the Renfrow Farm & Greenhouse during most classes.

WHERE: Meet at Renfrow Hardware, and the group will walk up to Renfrow Farms, weather permitting.

PARKING: Matthews Farmers Market parking lot (on Cotton Gin Alley behind Renfrow Hardware)

WHEN: Classes are held from 10am-12pm on the Wednesdays listed below.

COST: $20/person. Children under the age of 16 are free with guardian attendee.

To register, call The Successful Gardener at 919-538-5777 or email us at Pre-registration is appreciated, but not required.

2017 Class List

 January 25:  From the Windowsill to the Garden: Starting Plants from Seed. *Completed*

Growing your own plants from seed is easy and can save you money. We’ll talk about seed selection, setting up your growing area, looking after your young plants and lots more!

February 22: A Cut Above: Pruning Fruit trees class *Completed*

Pruning is one of the most important things you can do for the health of your trees. This class covers the basic types of cuts, why to make a pruning cut, and the right tools and how to maintain them.

March 29: Getting a head start: Early spring gardens class*Completed*

There are lots of ways to extend the gardening season. We’ll look at ways to grow food earlier in the year and have more fresh food from your garden!

April 26: Organic Gardening Primer *Completed*

We’ve all heard the “o-word” but what does it mean? Learn how to grow more fresh food using flowers, herbs, & compost.

May 24: Pollinators, Predators, & Parasites *Completed*

There are so many good “critters” in the garden. They help us grow food, get rid of harmful pests, and make great soil! We’ll learn how to attract and support all this good life.

June 21: Summer Garden Challenges  *Completed*

Every summer is different in the garden. This year, we’ll look at the challenges that face us as gardeners in the changing climate.

July 24: Save Those Seeds!

Every plant makes seed of some kind. We use that Abundance to create more plants. We can do the same in our own gardens, too. We’ll look at plant reproduction, the ways we can use that process, and how to do it.

August 23: The Abundant Garden: Plants feeding plants

Not only do plants feed us, the can feed other plants as well! We’ll look at how to use plants to cut down on weeds, build soil, and manage pests, too.

September 27: Perennial Food Plants

Not every food plant is an annual. Some food plants last for years. With proper management, some of them can last for decades! We’ll look at several of them, and learn how to make them a part of a successful garden.

Jeff Bio: 

Jeff Rieves works as an independent educator, consultant, and writer, working to rebuild the Local Food culture. He consults with individuals and businesses, helping home gardeners, small farms and food businesses. Jeff blogs about growing good food, practicing Yoga, and Living an Intentional Life at