Classes

Community Gardens Development Training Series

Community Gardens Development Training (CGDT) provides community residents with technical assistance, leadership training, horticulture education and start-up materials. This training ultimately helps to carry out the mission of the Civic Garden Center, extending the impact to a broad number of people in Cincinnati. This class is also a great resource for folks interested in becoming involved in an existing community garden or vegetable gardening at home. These classes are free of charge! Many classes are hands-on workshops. CGDT is sponsored in part by the Meshewa Farm Foundation. To apply to the program click here.  For a list of CGDT classes click here.

Sponsored by:

PNC_Bank_4C

Professional Development Series**

Whether you’re a green industry professional seeking CEUs or an individual interested in learning more about sustainable architecture and reducing human impact on the environment, this series is for you! This set of classes will focus on The Living Building Challenge (LBC) – one of the newest green building rating systems. The LBC is a building certification program, advocacy tool, and philosophy that defines the most advanced measure of sustainability in the built environment possible today. A variety of experienced live instructors will provide engaging presentations related to the seven performance categories of the LBC known as Petals: Place, Water, Energy, Health & Happiness, Materials, Equity and Beauty. Classes begin in April and will be hosted every other month in 2015. Stay tuned for postings and register for individual sessions listed below.

** after title indicates a class in this series

 

January

Milk Soap Making Day Camp

Saturday, January 14, 10:00 am- 12:00 pm & 12:30-2:30 p.m.
Instructor: Carisa Hund-Bunten, Owner of 7th Street Gifts, Newport, KY
Cost: $120 per participant + materials fee by weight, ages 18 and up, registration is required

Soap making with milks uses a different approach than traditional cold process soap making. Learn how to apply the tricks of the trade to make successful and nourishing milk soaps, incorporating milk from mammals as well as plants such as goat and soy in this day camp. Milk sustains us in our first and most fragile days of life, why not continue to feed our bodies with natures perfect food?  Traditional soap making techniques are often abandoned when soaping with milk and an open mind and the ability to approach soaping in a different light are a must. Sharing coveted techniques and tips, Carisa’s experience applies practical application learned firsthand from crafting and selling handmade soap from her family’s brick and mortar storefront for over 15 years, conducting numerous workshops, as well as receiving formal training in soap making from the John C. Campbell Folk School in North Carolina. Safety will be a primary concern while stressing the importance of exact measurements, ingredients, and temperatures while working with lye. Using a variety of recipes and ingredients, you will take home 8-9 customized soaps made that day to cure and use long after the camp.  To register click here.

 

Participants must be able to stand and lift, follow instructions, and work well in a group setting. Old clothes, long sleeves and closed-toe shoes required. Latex gloves and goggles will be available or you may bring your own.

 

PLEASE NOTE: In addition to the tuition there will be an additional materials fee (based on take home weight) of approximately $25.00 due to the instructor that day.

 

The New Edible Landscape: Definitions & Philosophies

Tuesday, January 24, 6:00-7:00 pm
Instructor: Sue Trusty, University of Cincinnati, Horticulture Professor
Cost: Free (UC course, the public is invited to audit at no charge)

Can you describe sustainable landscaping, permaculture, polyculture, and aquaponics? What are the basics of edible forest, straw-bale, keyhole gardens and vertical gardening? This session will help define the new edible landscape movement, illustrating and defining the features of each model and method.  To register call 513-221-0981.

 

February

Polycultures & Food Forests

Tuesday, February 14, 6:00-8:00 pm
Instructor: Sue Trusty, University of Cincinnati, Horticulture Professor
Cost: $15 (free for CGC volunteers)

Polycultures imitate natural ecosystems by producing multiple crops in the same space. Food forests are polycultures of fruit and nut trees, perennial and annual vegetables, herbs and flowers. The secret is combining things in such a way that the needs of each plant are met and enhanced by neighboring plants. Polycultures provide food for people, habitat for wildlife, natural soil building, beauty, and more – with fewer inputs than traditional gardens. This class covers the basics of designing and maintaining effective polycultures and food forests.  To register, click here.

Garden Basics: Get your garden growing

Thursday, February 23, 11:30- 1:00 pm
Instructor: Bennett O. Dowling, Horticulturist
Cost: $15 (free for CGC volunteers)
Lunch: You’re invited to bring your lunch to eat while you learn!

As spring approaches, important work must be done in the garden to ensure its health and beauty throughout the growing season. Late winter and spring are also great times to plan and plant gardens. This class covers seasonally appropriate work such as pruning and working soil, as well as planting and seed sowing. To register, click here.

 

Plan a Vegetable Garden

Tuesday, February 28, 6:00-8:00 pm
Instructor: Jerry Luebbe, seasoned vegetable gardener
Cost: $15 (free for CGC volunteers)

Are you interested in starting a vegetable garden this year? This course will introduce the basics of planning a successful garden. Topics to be covered include site selection, soil preparation, choosing what you want to grow, what to plant where, when to plant and harvest different crops and strategies for keeping your plants healthy throughout the season (watering, crop rotation, companion plants). We’ll also talk about buying seedlings or starting your own plants, plus tips on starting seeds both inside and out.  To register, click here.

 

March

Basic Organic Vegetable Gardening

Wednesday, March 1, 6:00-8:00 pm
Cost: $15 (free for CGC volunteers)
Instructors: Dave Koester, Retired Campbell County Extension Agent

This course will provide a great introduction to growing vegetables without the use of synthetic pesticides, herbicides or fertilizers. Topics will include what to plant when, seasonal considerations for maintenance, selecting varieties, intensive gardening, succession planting and companion planting techniques.  To register, click here.

 

Selecting Peppers & Tomatoes for the Home Garden

Thursday, March 2nd, 6:00-8:00 pm
Instructor: Jerry Luebbe, President – Cincinnati Heirloom Open Pollinated Tomato Associate Growers (CHOPTAG)
Cost: $15 (free for CGC volunteers)

Do you want something better than grocery store tomatoes and peppers? This class is a great guide for both the experienced gardener in quest of the perfect tomatoes and peppers and for the beginner just getting started. We’ll talk about the terms Hybrid, Heirloom, Open-Pollinated, and Self-Pollinated types. Other topics will include soil fertility, seed and plant variety selection, starting plants from seeds, growing & harvesting, pests, saving seeds, and seed & plant suppliers. To register, click here.

 

Ecological Impact of Deer

Saturday, March 4, 9:30 am – 12:00 pm
Instructor: Wild Ones Program
Cost: $15 (free for CGC and Wild Ones members)

Deer don’t just affect gardeners. When they reach levels of overpopulation, deer can greatly alter the natural environment, reducing native plant populations to dangerously low levels. We will explore not only the effects of deer overpopulation, but also methods being used locally in parks and gardens. Panel discussion to follow.  To register, click here.

 

Vegetables, Herbs, and Flowers for the Garden Landscape

Tuesday, March 7, 6:00-8:00 pm
Instructor: Sue Trusty, University of Cincinnati, Horticulture Professor
Cost: $15 (UC course open to the public, free for CGC volunteers)

Blended gardens that incorporate ornamentals and edibles look amazing, create community and are trendy. A diverse garden with many different species of plants is resistant to pests, supports wildlife, attracts pollinators, and can improve the soil. Learn the best vegetables, herbs, and flowers to incorporate into the landscape, including unusual varieties you must grow at home, native plants, perennial vegetables and shade tolerant edibles.  To register, click here.

Soil Health

Wednesday, March 8, 6:00-8:00 pm
Instructor: Holly Utrata-Halcomb, Hamilton County Soil & Water Conservation District
Cost: $15 (free for CGC volunteers)
This class will provide an introduction to basic soil science and discuss the importance of conserving and cultivating a biologically active soil to grow healthy fruits, vegetables and perennials. The seasonal cycle of soil as well as composting, green manure and cover crops will be reviewed as part of a strategy to build fertile soil. Soil testing kits will be available. The cost of the soil test for Hamilton County residents is $5 per test, for gardeners living outside of Hamilton County the fee is $12 per test. To register, click here.

 

Rain Gardens & Dry Creeks: Turning Rain Water Problems into Beauty

Thursday, March 9, 6:00-8:00 pm
Instructor: John Hemmerle, Owner + Designer of Our Land Organics, LLC
Cost: $15 (free for CGC volunteers)
A problem that many yards face is how to prevent rainwater from damaging their property. This class will cover different techniques that take the problem of rain water runoff in the yard and develop them into ecological solutions that benefit the homeowner and our ecosystem. Techniques discussed include dry creeks, infiltration/bio swales and rain gardens. To register, click here.

 

Spring Family Fun
(families with children of all ages are welcome)

Saturday, March 18, 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Instructor: Mary Dudley, CGC Youth Education Coordinator
Cost: $5 per participant
Advance registration is appreciated but not required.

Drop in anytime between 10 am-noon to celebrate the changing of the seasons at the Civic Garden Center! Join us as we say goodbye to winter and welcome spring. Families will embark on a seasonal scavenger hunt, create a craft with natural items and take home a set of activity cards.  To register, click here.

 

Fabulous Containers: Edible and Ornamental

Tuesday, March 28, 6:00-8:00 pm
Instructors: Bennett O. Dowling, CGC Horticulturist & Ali Burns, Horticulturist
Cost: $15 (free for CGC volunteers)
Are you interested in gardening but lack a yard? There are plenty of plants you can grow in containers… on a roof, balcony, stoop or even indoors. Learn the basics of keeping container plantings healthy and fresh throughout the seasons. We will dive into how to design both ornamental and edible containers for visual, olfactory and taste appeal.  To register, click here.

 

April

Companion Planting

Thursday, April 6, 6:00 – 8:00 pm
Instructor: Nathan Reidel, Urban Earth Farms
Cost: $15 (free for CGC volunteers)

Companion planting has been part of farming folklore for ages. It is perhaps, one of the most useful tactics in the garden, and at the same time one of the least scientifically researched. Come explore and unlock the wisdom of the past. Learn some of the common beneficial plant combinations and why they work. Get ideas for your own garden and experiment with new combinations!  To register, click here.

 

Spring Backyard Composting

Tuesday, April 11, 6:00-8:00 pm
Instructor: Jerry Luebbe, Master Composter
Cost: $15 (free for CGC volunteers)

Do you want to start a compost pile but have no idea how to even begin? Come learn the basics about composting to get you started. This class is an excellent introduction to why we compost, different styles of composting, and how to compost. To register, click here.

 

Field Study of Weeds and Invasive Plants

Wednesday, April 12, 10:30-12:00 pm (class); 12:00-1:00 pm (optional work session)
Instructor: Bennett O. Dowling, CGC Horticulturist
Cost: $15 (free for CGC volunteers & students)

People say a weed is just a plant growing where you don’t want it, but there are in fact plants that can be considered a weed in any context, especially invasive and noxious species. This field study will involve identification of common lawn and garden weeds, as well as invasive plant species. Different techniques for removal and prevention will be demonstrated, followed by an optional work session to reclaim a portion of the grounds here at the Civic Garden Center alongside local horticulture students. To register click here.

 

Construction Techniques for the Gardener

Saturday, April 15, 10:00 am – 1:00 pm
Instructor: Greg Potter, CGC Community Garden Coordinator
Cost: $15 (free for CGC volunteers)

Garden construction fundamentals – learn to build raised beds, paths, compost bins, cold frames and simple trellis forms. Alternative building materials for these features will also be addressed. To register, click here.

 

Student Presentations – Edibles for Sustainable Landscapes

Tuesday, April 18, 6:00-8:00 pm
Cost: Free and open to the public
Join us for final presentations from University of Cincinnati Horticulture students. Students will present their final design projects for real-life community garden spaces located in Cincinnati.

 

Introductory Biodynamics

Saturday, April 29, 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Instructor: Nathan Reidel, Urban Earth Farms
Cost: $15 (free for CGC volunteers)
Join us for Biodynamic Gardening basics. Ever wonder where plants get their growing instructions? Do you use all 12 senses when approaching gardening challenges? Biodynamic farming is simply the study and application of inter-connectedness. Understanding the needs of the whole growing system, begins inside you.  To register, click.

 

June

School Garden Development 101

Thursday, June 8, 9 am-3:30 pm
Instructor: Mary Dudley, School Garden Coordinator
Cost: Free for teachers

This training is for teachers, parents, and community members who wish to start a school garden. The training is a full day of learning the design process for a socially and ecologically diverse garden. We share ideas and examples from other schools, teach basic gardening and composting skills, and model gardening lessons you can use in the classroom. After participating in the training you are enrolled in our School Garden Network, giving your school access to free seeds, consultations from our staff, our monthly School Garden Calendar, and notifications of upcoming events in our School Garden Workshop Series. Join the 80+ youth gardening programs in Greater Cincinnati by partnering with the Civic Garden Center to help your students grow!

 

Garden Basics: Keeping your garden looking great all summer

Thursday, June 15, 11:30 am -1:00 pm
Instructor: Bennett O. Dowling, CGC Horticulturist & Jerry Luebbe, seasoned vegetable gardener
Cost: $15 (free for CGC Volunteers)
Lunch: You’re invited to bring your lunch to eat while you learn!

The work you do in the garden all summer not only contributes to its beauty, but also can be pivotal in ensuring the health of your plants. This class covers such topics as watering and water conservation measures, pruning, feeding, common pest and disease issues, and other seasonally appropriate topics for flower, tree, scrub and vegetable gardens. Time permitting we’ll troubleshoot your individual growing issues. To register, click here.

 

Summer Family Fun
(families with children of all ages are welcome)

Saturday, June 17, 10:00 am- 12:00 pm
Instructor: Mary Dudley, CGC Youth Education Coordinator
Cost: $5 per participant

Advance registration is appreciated but not required.
Drop in anytime between 10 am-noon to celebrate the changing of the seasons at the Civic Garden Center! Join us as we say goodbye to spring and welcome summer. Families will embark on a seasonal scavenger hunt, create a craft with natural items and take home a set of activity cards. To register, click here.

 

July

Indigenous Herbs & Edible Plants for the Home Landscape

Saturday, July 15, 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Instructor: Solomon Gamboa, Pioneer Landscapes, LLC
Cost: $15 (free for CGC volunteers)

This class will introduce you to commercially or locally available indigenous plants with herbal/medicinal qualities and/or edible qualities (roots, stems, leaves, fruits, seeds, nuts). Indigenous people were well fed off native plants, and each tribe developed medicinal understanding of the how to apply native plants to illnesses. Expect to gain insights into the hows, wheres, whats, and whens.*Please provide Civic Garden Center with your email address to receive post-class take home information detailing much of what we go over in the class plus linking you to much more vital information.  To register, click here.

August

Master Composter Series

Prerequisite: Successful passage of pre-test (knowledge available during one of Civic Garden Center’s Basic Composting classes or Hamilton County Recycling and Solid Waste District class)
Dates: August 2, 9, 16, 23, 9am-3:30 pm
Cost: $30 per participant
Class size is limited. Registration is required.

Calling all garden gurus and environmental enthusiasts! Ready to get down and dirty? Enroll in our intensive Master Composter Training. You’ll learn the details of soil science, a variety of composting methods, and how to share your knowledge with our local community. 10 hours of classroom instruction will be complemented by 10 hours of field study, exposing participants to the vast wealth of composting resources in our area. Certificates will be awarded upon completion of 30 volunteer hours working in community gardens and education programs. Don’t miss your chance to join this unique opportunity. Spaces are limited and interested participants must submit proof of basic composting knowledge via a pre-test before they are considered for enrollment. To register, click here.

Abundant Tomatoes: Taste Test, Save Seeds, Keep Plants Healthy

Wednesday, August 9, 6:00-8:00 pm
Instructor: Jerry Luebbe, President – Cincinnati Heirloom Open Pollinated Tomato Associate Growers (CHOPTAG)
Cost: $15 (free for CGC volunteers)

Join us for a tomato taste test in the height of the season to sample a wide variety of heirloom tomatoes. Pick up ideas for which varieties to grow next year and how to use them in your kitchen. Learn the art of tomato seed saving so you can pass on your own heirloom seeds. Take home strategies for keeping your plants growing strong into the fall.  To register, click here.

 

September

Garden Basics: Fall & Winter Maintenance of Flower and Vegetable Gardens

Thursday, September 14, 11:30 am -1:00 pm
Instructor: Bennett O. Dowling, CGC Horticulturist & Jerry Luebbe, seasoned vegetable gardener
Cost: $15 (free for CGC Volunteers)
Lunch: Your invited to bring your lunch to eat while you learn!

Preparing your plants and beds for winter is important in maintaining the health of your plants and soil, as well as the aesthetics of the landscape in its dormant state. Fall and winter are key seasons for shrub and tree planting, seed collecting, feeding and other practices that send your garden into winter healthy, happy and ready for spring. This class covers the seasonal cycles of flower and vegetable gardens with an emphasis on building healthy soil, including the use of green manure crops and composting.  To register, click here.

 

Fall Family Fun (families with children of all ages are welcome)

Saturday, September 16, 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Instructor: Mary Dudley, CGC Youth Education Coordinator
Cost: $5 per participant
Advance registration is appreciated but not required.

Drop in anytime between 10 am-noon to celebrate the changing of the seasons at the Civic Garden Center! Join us as we say goodbye to summer and welcome fall. Families will embark on a seasonal scavenger hunt, create a craft with natural items and take home a set of activity cards.  To register, click here.

 

October

Invasive Plant Removal & Indigenous Replacements: Transforming the Invasive Niche

Saturday, October 14, 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Instructor: Solomon Gamboa, Pioneer Landscapes, LLC
Cost: $15 (free for CGC volunteers)
This class will cover the best management practices for invasive plant removal including Tree of Heaven, Siberian Elm, Ornamental Pear, Bush Honeysuckle, Japanese Honeysuckle, Autumn Olive, Privet, Burning Bush, Barberry, Garlic Mustard, Lesser Celadine, Canadian Thistle, Johnson Grass, and a few more. We’ll then cover how to best stabilize the niche opened up by the removal of these plants, utilizing aggressive native wildflower mixes mixed with site specific native trees/shrubs.*Please provide Civic Garden Center with your email address to receive post-class take home information detailing much of what we go over in the class plus linking you to much more vital information.  To register, click here.

December

Winter Family Fun
(families with children of all ages are welcome)

Saturday, December 16, 10:00 am- 12:00 pm
Instructor: Mary Dudley, CGC Youth Education CoordinatorCost: $5 per participant
Advance registration is appreciated but not required.

Drop in anytime between 10 am-noon to celebrate the changing of the seasons at the Civic Garden Center! Join us as we say goodbye to fall and welcome winter. Families will embark on a seasonal scavenger hunt, create a craft with natural items and take home a set of activity cards.  To register, click here.