Arts and Entertainment

Register early to hear Kerr at Gardening Workshop

Graham Kerr of “The Galloping Gourmet:” television show will bring his legendary cooking skills to the Whidbey Gardening Workshop. - Courtesy photo
Graham Kerr of “The Galloping Gourmet:” television show will bring his legendary cooking skills to the Whidbey Gardening Workshop.
— image credit: Courtesy photo

Graham Kerr, "The Galloping Gourmet," is coming to Whidbey. Kerr’s keynote address will open this year’s Whidbey Gardening Workshop Saturday, March 19, at Coupeville High School.

Kerr’s speech will highlight lessons from his first year as a kitchen gardener. “Before I began, I’d never met a plant I couldn’t kill,” he said. “I began knowing nothing. The most important thing at the start was to slow down. I needed to learn what I needed to know. To understand the microclimate in which plants grow here. To understand soil and seed selection. To learn how to find my way around the garden.”

Like the President and First Lady he dug up his south lawn. He added raised beds and a greenhouse and documented the experience in seven and a half hours of video footage and a new book, “Growing at the Speed of Life,” his 29th.

The first year in the garden, Kerr said, “Gave me a greater sense of neighborhood. It enabled me to connect with people at a depth we would never have experienced without gardening. It showed me the great need we have for good food.” In taking 200 pounds of produce from his garden to the local food bank he said, “I had one of the best days of my entire life” knowing the food would go out to a hundred homes.

Kerr’s vision is that gardeners are like bees, pollinating their neighborhoods with knowledge and with food so that there will be no hungry people.

Kerr has been cooking publicly since 1960. His television program, “The Galloping Gourmet,” was broadcast through the mid-70s. Since then he has produced 1,000 TV shows focusing on healthy eating highlighting what he calls “minimum risk, maximum flavor.” In addition to his keynote address, Kerr will sign copies of his new book and present a class on preparing and serving the bounty of the garden.

The Whidbey Gardening Workshop offers more than 55 classes from “Gardening 101: The Good Earth” to “In Praise of Native Pollinators.” Registration begins Monday, Feb. 14. The cost is $35. A box lunch is available for $8. For a complete list of classes and to register online visit www.island.wsu.edu/gar

dening/wgworkshop. To register by mail, call 679-7327. The Whidbey Gardening Workshop is a program of the Master Gardeners of Island County.

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