In association with

Walworth Community Gardening Network

This tailor made workshop specifically designed for community groups will be delivered in two parts, February & April.

Part 1 February - Winter Fruit Tree Pruning

This workshop is specifically designed for residents of SE1, SE11 & SE17

Winter is the best time to prune apples and pears, and this workshop will offer a hands on introduction to the principles of winter fruit tree pruning in urban situations, particularly community gardens. The course will cover:

  • Which kinds of fruit tree to prune and when
  • Why is pruning important?
  • How to prune for maximum fruit production
  • Different shapes and sizes of trees
  • How to 'read' a fruit tree to tell how healthy it is
  • General winter tree care - mulching, feeding and staking
  • How to look for warning signs of pests or disease
  • Which tools to use and how to look after them
  • How to establish a good basic framework of branches
  • Where to cut, how to cut, how much to cut

The workshop will focus largely on stand alone trees that are from 2 - 50 years old. The main focus will be apple trees, but much of the information is of use for pruning other fruit trees.

During the workshop we will work at Walworth Garden and neighbouring Tenants and Resident Association gardens to provide hands on experience of a range of different trees. All tools provided, but if you have your own gloves and sharp secateurs please bring them along. All pruning will be from ground level, no use of ladders required. All abilities welcome. You do not need to be strong or agile, but we will be walking between sites (approx 1/2 mile total). Please wrap up very well indeed. We will be outside for the most of the day, and the pruning work will NOT be vigorous! In the case of extreme weather the course will still run, but we will work inside the greenhouse at Walworth Garden. 

If you have an apple or pear tree of your own that you would like advice on, please bring along several good photographs from different angles, and there will be a little time at the end of the workshop to discuss. 

If you do not yet have any fruit trees in your garden or community garden this course would be a good detailed introduction to the ongoing care that fruit trees require. 

Meet Richard Galpin

Richard Galpin is an artist, working on projects that are a hybrid of art, horticulture and local history. He founded the Alberta Fruit Commons with the Alberta Tenants and Residents Association which uses the growing and sharing of fruit as way of building community resilience. Richard is regularly consulted on fruit trees by neighbouring TRAs and community groups in the Walworth area. As well as practical experience of urban fruit growing, he helps to manage an organic orchard in Lincolnshire,  and has received training by the EEAOA (East of England Apples and Orchard Association) and the Orchard Project.

What you need to know

No previous experience is required!

Introduction to Community Gardening is a two part workshop. Winter Fruit Tree Pruning is the first session, the second session will be in April.

The workshop will run 10:00 - 15:30

The Workshop is held at Walworth Garden and offsite. Your first meeting point will be at Walworth Garden. You can find details on how to get here via our
Your Visit page

Workshop Schedule
10am, Coffee and registration in the large greenhouse at Walworth Garden
10:30 - 11.30 Basic principles (in the greenhouse if cold)
11.20 - 12.30 Practical: pruning young trees (2 - 5 yrs) Walworth Garden & Alberta Estate
12.30 - 1.30 Lunch. Please bring a pack lunch - or use local food options (Walworth Rd).
1.30 - 3.30 Practical: pruning an older tree (5 - 50 yrs) at Kennington Park TRA.

This is a workshop specifically designed for residents of SE1, SE11 & SE17


This workshop has been organised in association with the Walworth Community Gardening Network. The WCGN helps neighbouring gardening groups work together and support each other, and provides a forum to discuss gardening in an urban and diverse environment. For more information contact