Our Spring 2021 workshop offerings are sure to delight and with 26 different workshops (13 of them brand new) to choose from, fun times are just around the corner. Don't forget to also check out our specialty dining options.
Pictures and descriptions for each workshop are listed below. Don't despair if a workshop does not currently have a photo. Pictures are updated frequently as demos are completed.
To reserve your seat, click on any "Register Now" buttons and you will be directed to our online registration system. Visit our How to Register page for additional directions.
All workshops are held at Southern Exposure Herb Farm. (Map and General Info)
Please Note: Actual botanicals and other decorative items used will vary depending on availability
SE-01: Wed, May 5, 6:30 PM, $80
MAGICAL LIGHTED SPHERE: To light up your life!
The grandest garden decor often has the simplistic elegance of nature herself, like this intricately-woven, 16” grapevine sphere all aglow with glittering white lights. Hang it from a tree limb, light up an entryway, or place it in your garden as a delightful centerpiece. These illuminated, rustic spheres are popular in European Gardens all year round. Using your splendid yet rustic sphere, you will attach white lights to light up your garden throughout the year. Upon your arrival for this perfect evening, you will enjoy an enchanting dinner prepared by our chef.
SE-02: Thurs, May 6, 6:30 PM, $75
STANDALONE RUSTIC BIRDHOUSE: A happy home for our feathered friends
Your feathered friends will be saying, “What in the blooming world will they think of next?” Whatever your style, you have taken the time to create a garden, and only true gardeners know the enjoyment of finding the perfect garden ornament. Birdhouses are classic garden ornaments which give our feathered friends a home to raise their young. This workshop really is “for the birds” and focuses on what attracts birds to birdhouses as well as the three elements of a bird’s life: food, water, and shelter for raising their young. Additionally, you will adorn your own standalone birdhouse mounted on a four-foot wooden base with spring touches that attract and help your feathered friends feel right at home. But first, you will enjoy a spectacular meal prepared by our chef.
SE-03: Fri, May 7, 6:30 PM, $65 NEW
SINGIN’ IN THE RAIN: Spring-inspired arrangements
A phrase that conjures up childhood memories of our favorite galoshes, shiny raincoats, and colorful umbrellas. In that season, there was nothing more exhilarating than the smack of your boot against the glassy surface of the too tempting trail of shallow puddles, left behind by the most recent rainstorm, as winter reluctantly gave way to spring. Using a 32” yellow umbrella, you will create a unique floral arrangement, mixing both permanent and fresh botanicals, to usher in spring and add a charming touch to your front door. You will also enjoy a refreshing meal prepared by our chef.
Umbrella color will be yellow for the workshop
SE-04: Sat, May 8, 11:00 AM, $75
CIRCLE OF LIFE WREATH: A gift for Mom
Mother’s Day is a day away and what better way to say thank you to your greatest supporter than with this living wreath. Living wreaths are symbols of great gardening, great innovative creativity, and great imagination. As we approach Mother’s Day, the living wreath is also a visual representation of the beautiful life that gave you, life. Enjoy a country morning at Southern Exposure creating an 8” living wreath made from wire, herbs, pansies, greens, and willow. Give the wreath as a gift to the mom in your life or give the mom in your life the gift of time with you, creating this beautiful Circle of Life wreath. Your morning will begin with our chef heralding spring's arrival by creating a wonderful brunch that personifies happiness and indulgence in every bite.
SE-05: Wed, May 12, 6:30 PM, $85
STACKED ROCK GARDEN SCULPTURES: The ultimate balancing act
Garden sculptures come in many forms. Garden cairns (stacked rocks) were historically used as markers along trails so the early settlers knew they were going in the right direction. Today we use stacked rocks as a dynamic art medium which naturally draws our attention to the focal point of the garden. In this workshop, you will create a 30-inch stacked, stone sculpture for an all-season focal point in your garden, as well as enjoy a mouth-watering meal prepared by our chef.
SE-06: Thurs, May 13, 6:00 PM, $80 NEW
PAINTED TURTLE STATUARY: Adding color to concrete
Concrete statuary is a whimsical addition to any garden landscape and is found in numerous gardens. It is beautiful in its natural form, but takes on a whole new life when color is added. Textures, lines, details, and artistic expression you had no idea existed, miraculously come to life with each stroke of your brush. In this workshop, you will bring a 12” concrete Western Painted turtle to life from beginning to end. The structure of this workshop will be slightly different to accommodate drying time for each of the steps. You will start in the workshop area to apply the base coat colors to your turtle, then enjoy a scrumptious dinner prepared by our chef, and end where you started, to add the finishing touches to your concrete masterpiece.
SE-07: Fri, May 14, 6:30 PM, $75 NEW
BEAUTIFUL BLOSSOMS: A flower extravaganza!
As the rays of spring sunlight begin to peek through our windows, we are enticed to venture outdoors after the long chill of winter. And when we do, we are rewarded with a sensory overload; the warmth of the sun on our skin, the hypnotizing fragrance of tender blossoms, an explosion of colors and vibrant greens, cheerful melodies carried through the breeze, and the budding feeling of rejuvenation and renewal as we are witness to nature’s rebirth. Join us as we dedicate this workshop to the springtime gem that takes center stage; beautiful blossoms. Start your experience with a posy-inspired cocktail and a vibrant meal prepared by our chef. Then, each guest will learn simple floral design techniques to create their own floral display, how to include floral notes into a dessert, and acquire some tips to create your own cutting garden.
SE-08: Sat, May 15, 1:00 PM, $85 (SE-08A-Lunch and Pizza Garden) NEW
$30 (SE-08B-Lunch only)
PIZZA GARDEN LOG PLANTER: Proprio Squisito!
“Truly Delicious.” Children’s love of pizza is almost as long as its history, and just like the evolution of pizza itself, the way we enjoy it changes as we mature. But one thing is certain, for most of us, our love of pizza never fades. We invite you to bring along the special kid(s) in your life (and the kid in you), as you learn the history of pizza and the herbs that have become associated with this mealtime favorite. You will then fill a 10” x 16” rustic log planter to the brim with those aromatic herbs, to prepare your own pizza garden, ready to harvest and use to compose your favorite pizza creations. But first, you will enjoy an Italian pizza-inspired lunch prepared by our chef. Each adult and child can create their own pizza garden, or work on a pizza garden together. Children must be age 5 and older.
SE-09: Wed, May 19, 6:30 PM, $80
EUROPEAN TUTUER: The stakes are high here!
Artful metal shapes for training and growing roses and vines have a refinement all their own. Recreate the elegance of a European garden with an attractive six-foot metal garden obelisk crowned with a decorative finial. An obelisk will add charm and purpose to your garden’s décor. Built for durability, it will support and display your favorite climbing vines in the summer, and a bird feeder during the winter months. Touring our gardens, you will learn about twirling, alluring vines, climbing plants, and walk-through arbors. You will take home a scarlet runner bean from the Heritage Collection at Monticello, plus three other climbing plants, but not before you enjoy an elegant meal prepared by our chef. Your obelisk will measure six-foot; please drive a vehicle to accommodate your creation.
SE-10: Thurs, May 20, 6:30 PM, $70
PULLEY PLANTER: New Roles for Old Pieces!
At Southern Exposure, we hang our wedding chandelier on an old hay hoist used by farmers in the 1800’s. Old pulleys are becoming enormously collectable, but also make charming hanging hooks for lighting and floral displays. Smaller size “water-well” pulleys, with two buckets attached with roping, make astonishing hanging baskets and can be hung from a ceiling, tree or tall shepherds hook outdoors. Filled with flowers and seasonal décor, this 28” long reproduction pulley and tin buckets will be part of your garden décor for seasons to come. Spend an evening designing and planting this unique hanging garden and enjoy a homestyle meal prepared by our chef.
SE-11: Sat, May 22, 11:00 AM, $70 NEW
FOUR GARDENS and a BRUNCH: Spring Inspiration
Spring is here, and life is lush and full as the longer days settle into a gentle rhythm. Like a song’s first note, spring begins with one bloom at a time. Spend an afternoon learning about four different specialty gardens: culinary herb garden; shade garden; cutting garden; and a garden for our winged friends. Enjoy a leisurely Saturday with great company, the beauty of the gardens, and a delicious brunch prepared by our chef. You will walk away with not only the inspiration to create these specialty gardens, but also with one plant that will complement each of the featured gardens (total of 4 plants).
SE-12: Sun, May 23, 1:00 PM, $85 (SE-12A-Lunch and Fairy Garden) NEW
$30 (SE-12B-Lunch only)
FAIRY GARDEN TEA PARTY: An enchanted afternoon
Stories of fairies enchant and delight both children and adults alike. Fairy gardens, or miniature gardens, have become increasingly popular over the last several years with miniature plants and fairy decor being readily available at many nurseries. Fairy gardens can be simple or elaborate, but both are fun to create and add a bit of magic and enchantment to your garden. Bring your son, daughter, grandchild, niece, nephew, or any special child in your life and spend a magical afternoon with them creating your own 32” x 14” fairy garden as well as enjoy a tea party-themed light lunch prepared by our chef. Each adult and child can create their own fairy garden, or work on a fairy garden together. Children must be age 5 and older.
SE-13: Thurs, May 27, 6:30 PM, $85
A LOVE AFFAIR WITH LAVENDER: The essence of a prized herb!
There is documented use of the herb Lavender for over 2,500 years. Egyptians used lavender as perfumes…the Romans used it as oils in their baths…and it’s also mentioned in the Bible. Spend a relaxing evening at Southern Exposure learning the history of this incredible herb. Each guest will prune and trim a Lavender Topiary, infuse lavender to make Lavender Soap, and learn how to utilize lavender in a tasty dessert and drink. You will also enjoy a relaxing meal prepared by our chef.
SE-14: Fri, May 28, 6:30 PM, $85 **must be 21 to sign up for this workshop
SPRING WINE TASTING: Exploring the wine regions of France
France is a country that conjures connotations of delicious food, elegant desserts, and of course fine wines which are produced in some form almost everywhere throughout the country. Relax, unwind, and sample incredible wines and fabulous treats as we explore different wine regions of France. Savor our chef’s four course delectable meal designed to complement each of the featured wines, all of which will surely have you dreaming of a French holiday.
SE-16: Wed, June 2, 6:30 PM, $85
PENNY-FARTHING BIKE GARDEN ART: Evolution of the bicycle
Penny-farthing bicycles were at the height of their popularity between 1860 and 1880, during a time when inventors were working to revolutionize bicycle design to make them more efficient and convenient to use. Channeling the ingenuity of the creators of this first “bicycle”, our version of the penny-farthing is inventive rebar garden art with handlebars shaped to hold a flowerpot. In this workshop, you will add spring flowers to an 8-inch pot for the handlebars and add decorative spring touches to the 32” x 34” sculpture. Your afternoon will start with an imaginative meal prepared by our chef and end with a piece that will add a classic Victorian charm to any garden.
SE-17: Thurs, June 3, 6:30 PM, $85 NEW
BLUE HERON SUCCULENT PLANTER: The perfect combination!
Do you love succulents as much as we do at Southern Exposure? If so, odds are you will love this Blue Heron succulent planter. Succulents are attractive plants to many as they are relatively easy to care for, require little water, can be planted almost anywhere, and come in over 10,000 different varieties. The addition of the miniature version of our Blue Heron garden sculpture, make this 16” x 10”planter not only unique, but will add beauty, peace, and balance to your décor either inside or outside. In this workshop, you will add a variety of stunning succulents to this captivating planter, but not before enjoying a mouth-watering dinner prepared by our chef.
SE-18: Fri, June 4, 6:00 PM, $90 NEW
MAPLE LEAF BUTTERFLY BATH: An oasis for our delicate-winged friends!
Birdbaths are a staple in most gardens, as they not only attract and provide an essential source of water to our winged friends, but also add a soothing and beautiful aesthetic. However, let us not forget about the other winged friends we also work to attract to our gardens—the butterfly. Butterfly baths provide a shallow oasis for these enchanting creatures that is all their own, and placing them throughout your garden adds whimsical and charming touches in every corner. In this workshop, you will create an 11” butterfly bath that will be sure to attract these delicate beauties for your viewing enjoyment. The structure of this workshop will be slightly different to accommodate drying time for each of the steps. You will start in the workshop area to apply the base coat color to your concrete maple leaf water dish, then enjoy a delightful dinner prepared by our chef, and end where you started, to add the finishing touches to your butterfly bath.
SE-19: Sun, June 6, 1:00 PM, $85 NEW
WOOD PALLET PAINTING: Letting the wine and your creativity flow!
Let your inner artist out as a local artist from Kalamazoo’s Wine and Canvas heads to Southern Exposure to take you step by step through creating a spring-inspired 15” x 18” wood pallet masterpiece. Zero painting experience is required, so come enjoy an afternoon of great food, good friends, abundant wine, and an opportunity to leave your cares behind. You will start by enjoying a creative meal prepared by our chef, then let your creativity soar as you paint, and we keep the wine flowing! Please note: This workshop will run approximately 4 hours including lunch, which is longer than our other workshops.
SE-20: Wed, June 9, 6:30 PM, $75
EUROPEAN HANGING BASKET: A spring tradition
Containers brimming with plump, vigorous plants turn just about any nook or cranny into an inviting retreat. Suspended from a porch ceiling, lamppost, or even a tree, hanging planters positively dazzle – adding a whole new dimension to your home. Enjoy a delightful evening planting a 14” hanging wire basket filled to the brim with edible flowers, herbs, and scented botanicals. Whether you snip the plants for aromatic garnishes in drinks or mince them for desserts, this attractive and multi-purpose basket will be enjoyed all season long. You will also enjoy a sensational meal prepared by our chef.
SE-21: Thurs, June 10, 6:30 PM, $75
STACKED ROCK BIRDBATH: Two favorites in one!
Garden cairns (stacked rocks) and the harrow disc birdbath are both Southern Exposure workshop favorites. What happens when you combine two greats together? You obtain a true work of art: a garden sculpture that marries beauty with function. In this workshop you will create a 30-inch stacked rock, harrow disc birdbath on a wood base for an all-season focal point in your garden. Add some seasonal touches to this unique birdbath and enjoy a mouth-watering meal prepared by our chef.
SE-22: Fri, June 11, 6:30 PM, $85 NEW **must be 21 to sign up for this workshop
CHOCOLATE & WINE PAIRING: A match made in heaven!
The concept of combining two of the most revered tastes on the planet, chocolate and wine, into one exquisite experience is bound to create a memorable evening. The similarities that exist between both wine and chocolate make them not only a natural complement to each other, but also an intoxicating challenge to find the pairing that most perfectly showcases the flavor profiles of each. Join us on the quest to find that match made in heaven as we “keep it local” and pair flavorful wines with the blissful chocolates from some of the best chocolate shops throughout Michigan. Before the adventure begins you will enjoy a sensational meal prepared by our chef.
SE-23: Wed, June 16, 6:30 PM, $80
ALL ABOARD: Railroad Lantern filled with spring arrangement!
It's easy to turn “vintage inspired” railroad lanterns into a reusable container for displaying candles and your favorite spring botanicals. This enduring, versatile railroad lantern will capture spring’s rebirth and renewal while illuminating your favorite location in your garden. In this workshop, you will design a “spring botanical display” in a charming 8” x 9”reproduction tin and glass railroad lantern, allowing you to grow beautiful, blooms indoors until the arrival of summer. To accentuate this enchanting 1950s railroad lantern, you will enjoy a “first-class” dining experience prepared by our chef.
SE-24: Thurs, June 17, 6:30 PM, $75 NEW
SUMMER IS SERVED: The cure for winter weary spirits!
The sun is shining, the bees are buzzing, and everything’s coming up grilled, al-fresco, and flavorful. We know what you’re craving; terrific new recipes that showcase summer’s sweet return. Let’s face it, we probably all have some fall and winter eating regret this year, so as we head into summer, striving to be the healthiest version of ourselves, we are dedicating this workshop to the summer salad. Throw out the idea that salads are just the leafy, green kind (although the leafy green kind are delicious), and open yourself up to the literally thousands of possible ways that the summer harvest and other fresh ingredients can be combined, dressed, and made into extraordinary culinary experiences. Come hungry because you will first enjoy a delightful dinner prepared by our chef, and then continue to different stations for a progressive summer food event featuring an array of summer salads and dressings for you to sample, complete with recipes. And, of course, the evening would not be complete without a summer-inspired cocktail to top it all off. This promises to be an exciting experience because….summer never tasted sooooooo delicious!
SE-25: Wed, June 23, 6:30 PM, $80 NEW
HANGING WOODEN LANTERN: A floral display with rustic charm
Brightly-colored flowers effortlessly elicit smiles and joy from even the most sullen countenance. As summer unfolds, a colorful arrangement of either permanent or live blossoms is always a sure-fire way to add cheer to any room or outdoor spot and permanently chase away any remnants of the gray left behind by winter. In this workshop, you will learn floral design techniques to create an arrangement sure to deliver joy. Utilizing both permanent and live botanicals, you will transform an approximately 21” x 8” rustic, white-washed, hanging wood lantern into an inspired display of summer’s beauty. But first, you will enjoy a blissful meal prepared by our chef.
SE-26: Thurs, June 24, 6:30 PM, $80
THE ART OF FLOWER POUNDING: Beauty transferred
There’s no doubt about it! Flowers are one of the focal points of spring and an inspiration to art, poetry, and love with their beauty and vibrance. Various techniques have been developed through time to help us capture and display their beauty long after they naturally would have faded and withered away. Flower pounding is one of these techniques, which requires repeatedly striking floral petals and greens, transferring their dyes onto another medium. In this workshop, you will explore the art of flower pounding by creating your own work of floral art onto fabric, and placing your masterpiece into an 8 x 10 distressed wood frame, allowing you to display those coveted spring florals all year round. But first, you will enjoy a spring inspired meal prepared by our chef.