Pishwanton Wood is a space for environmental education, research and holistic practice, offering opportunities for people of all ages and abilities to renew and deepen their relationship with nature. We explore ways of integrating agriculture, horticulture, woodland management and conservation activities to create a practical demonstration of sustainable land use. Our philosophy is also reflected in the beautiful organic architecture, providing unique spaces for workshops, classes, and retreats.
Goethean Science is a practice of reading and learning from nature initiated by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe in the 18th century. The systemic cultivation of sensory experiences was developed further by the philosopher Dr. Rudolf Steiner in the early 20th century in the context of Anthroposophy.
The methodology has found wider application in various professional disciplines in the late 20th century and continues to inspire transformative and co-creative practices based on a phenomenological enquiry through art and science.
The 60 acre mixed woodland and small holding sits at the edge of the Lammermuir Hills towards the Lothian plane and has been cultivated biodynamically since 1996. It provides a rich habitat of different woodland areas, pastures, marshes and wetlands.
There is a central herb garden and apple orchard, which as well as contributing to educational workshops and volunteering opportunities, also serves as a resource for herbal produce. A sanctuary space is under development and will consist of a sequence of natural, contemplative spaces.
The Craft Workshop is a centre for the teaching and practice of contemporary rural crafts and art. Using materials sourced from the land, we invite artists and craftspeople to develop their practices through the exploration of these source materials. This learning is then shared through workshops, courses and public events which are open to all.
Pishwanton is the perfect outdoor classroom and working with the wood as our guide we provide workshops, courses and training throughout the year. We offer opportunities to learn traditional rural craft skills, green building techniques, how to make herbal medicines, and what’s best to forage, as well as artist residencies and the teaching of Goethean Scientific methods. Visit our What’s On page to see the full schedule of future events or contact us directly if you have any suggestions or requests for skills you’d like to learn.
We feel privileged to be custodians of this land and love sharing the experience of caring for it with a wider community. Over the years, volunteers have accomplished an enormous amount of restorative land and building work within the wood alongside the guidance and help of staff members. And there is always so much more work to be done! There are many opportunities for volunteers of any age or ability throughout the seasons, so wherever your interests lie, please do get in touch to find out how you can get involved. Come and spend some time outside!