Work, Worship, Study and Play

Herb Gardens and their Histories

Learn about the amazing gardens at Othona with our resident expert. There is also the option of learning to scythe.

Monday 24th June -  Friday 28th June 2024

Space is available on this event

On this retreat we will be exploring the community’s gardens particularly focussing on the Herb Garden and Peace Garden. We will look at the history of the gardens and their plants with our gardener Amanda who created the planting designs for both gardens.
We will be looking at the plants, their histories and mythologies and their practical usage both in the past and in present times.
We can also take time to explore the wildflower meadows and newly created Celtic labyrinth.
Weather permitting we will spend most of our time in the gardens learning about the plants, the herbs and their many uses.
Following the rhythms of the community day at midsummer, with its beautiful sunrises and sunsets, we will also share meal times, tea times, chapel services and swimming too.

This week there will also be an opportunity to learn more about scything in the beautiful grounds at Othona. Scything is key to the maintenance of wildflower meadows and is used here to help in the development of new wildflower areas as well as maintaining those already established.

Throughout the week there will be hands-on opportunities to learn, practice and develop new scythe skills with Jonny Aldridge, our resident Othona scything expert.

Bach Flower practitioner Angela Davies will be joining us for the week and will give a talk about the history and use of Bach flower remedies. She will also be available for one to one sessions.   Angela has been a Bach Flower practitioner for 28 years. She is a trainer at the Bach Centre in Oxfordshire and visits five other countries to train practitioners and trainers

Amanda has been involved in the gardens at the community for over 10 years and has volunteered in a variety gardens for more than 30 years. She spent many years volunteering in the Tudor Herb garden at Kentwell Hall, Suffolk with gardener, herbalist and apothecary Sue Thompson.

Jonney Aldridge has been part of the Othona Community since 1961. He is a keen environmental advocate, with a passion for wildflowers.

Arrivals: from 3pm Monday - first meal is dinner at 7pm

Departures: Friday morning 11am

Cost: We have two rates for adults £200 (Basic Rate) or £250 (*Benefactor Rate), If you are able to afford the Benefactor rate this helps to support the work of Othona and enables us to provide bursaries to support those who cannot afford to come. We may be able to offer a bursary if needed. Please contact us to find out more.

*(Find out about our Benefactor Rate)


24 Jun 2024 15:00 to 28 Jun 2024 11:00
Othona Community, Essex
East End Road
Show large map
Landline: 01621 776564 ext. 01621776564
Landline: 01621776564 ext. 01621776564