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Rocky Mountain Gardening Certificate

 

 

Cancellation Policy: Cancellations more than one week prior to a class are subject to a 15% cancellation fee. Cancellations with less than one weeks notice are non-refundable; please consider your payment a donation to the Gardens.

 

Amazing Vegetables A to Z Full Series

AMAZING VEGETABLES A TO Z FULL SERIES

Rocky Mountain Gardening Elective

This is the class that will hone your skills as an amazing vegetable gardener. It is designed to take beginners to a new level and remind intermediate gardeners of the success strategies that always work when we go off course and forget the science of what got us to success in the first place. We will cover the science of vegetable gardening, do some myth busting, and provide you with some clear cut strategies to get the biggest harvest from the space you have.

The classes are 2 ½ hours each and are designed so that you can take the entire series or drop in for a refresher on the single class or classes that you want to brush up on. We will use a combination of hands on and lecture and demonstration to keep you engaged.

Please note: We will not cover gardening in containers in depth in this class. If that is your interest, please see Crops in Pots.

 

Session 1: Raised Beds

March 6, 2018- 6:00pm

Planning the best location, choosing in ground or raised beds and the advantages and disadvantages of each. We will look at re-purposing materials to create raised beds. We will cover soil building and choosing amendments. We will build around what has not worked for you in the past and set you on a course for improvement for your 2017 vegetable garden. Every season is a Do-Over!

 

Session 2: Planting

March 13, 2018- 6:00pm

Planting is the focus of this session. How to decide what to plan, the seasons of the vegetable garden and getting the biggest bang for your gardening buck. We will cover cool season and warm season plants and the ones that grow best here in Colorado. Then take a look at seed starting and see a demonstration of starting seeds inside and direct sowing outside as well as transplanting. Then we will cover spacing strategies designed to give you the biggest harvest for the space you have available.

 

Session 3: Extended Gardening

March 20, 2018- 6:00pm

Keeping the Garden going for 3 seasons and beyond is the theme of this session. We will cover the importance of Crop Rotation and how to do it. We will learn different ways to succession plant and how it can maximize the harvest. We will address season extension strategies to protect your crops. We will also cover the concept of companion planting and what is true and what is not.

 

Session 4: Pests, Problems, & Harvesting

March 27, 2018- 6:00pm

The most common pests and diseases of the vegetable garden will be addressed, how to spot problems before they get away from you and good cultural practices to avoid problems, organics, watering, fertilizing and insect and disease controls. We will also discuss how to know when your veggies are ready for harvest.

 

Instructor: Patti O'Neal

Price: $120, $110 members

Special Instructions: You can sign up for each individual session, or sign up for all four classes in the series at a discount by signing up for "Amazing Vegetables A to Z Full Series".

 

 

Battling the Japanese Beetle

Rocky Mountain Gardening Elective

The Japanese beetle – found in many Front Range areas -- is moving to new communities. This unwelcome beetle is concerning home owners with serious damage to plants. Instructor Betty Cahill takes the class through the management options for the Japanese beetle during its adult and larval stages. She provides tips on how to protect your favorite plants, including a plant list that Japanese beetles prefer and mostly avoid.

Instructor: Betty Cahill

Price: $31, $26 member

Beginning Rocky Mountain Gardening

Rocky Mountain Gardening Elective

This course is designed for the Front Range gardener beginner. The basics of what is needed to adjust gardening skills from other climates to the Front Range’s finicky climate are covered. If you have never gardened here before or are looking for more success, this is the class for you! Learn the skills necessary to become an enthusiastic gardener. Annuals, perennials and vegetables are discussed, along with trees and shrubs that thrive in our climate, elevation and varying soils. Plant selection, planting and troubleshooting is discussed.

Subsequent weeks focus on the elements, water needs, fertilizers and organic gardening.

 

Instructor: Patti O'Neal

Price: $90, $80 members

Special Instruction: Please bring a glass jar of soil to class. (Must be see through glass jar to study layers of your own backyard native soil)

 

Best Fall Planted Bulbs for Perennializing

Rocky Mountain Gardening Elective

Want more than one year of spring bloom from your fall-planted bulbs? Come learn about the best bulbs and varieties for year after year of bloom in our area. Species from early blooming Galanthus, Crocus, Chionodoxa, Scilla and Narcissus through Tulipa, Hyacinthoides, Allium and Colchicum will be discussed. Whether for perennial beds or naturalized landscapes, you will learn planting and cultural tips for maintaining long life. Discussion includes how best to use bulbs and design considerations with other plants and elements in the landscape.

Sign up now to discover the best cultivars of tulips and other bulbs that perennialize on the Front Range before purchasing bulbs to plant this fall.

Instructor: Carl Wilson, Denver horticulturist, speaker and retired CSU Extension Agent.

Price: $31, $26 members

 

 

Converting Lawn to Xeriscape

Rocky Mountain Gardening Elective

Do you want to beautify your landscape and save water at the same time?

Prepare to go into detail about how to replace some of your Kentucky bluegrass lawn with water-smart perennial and ornamental grasses, discuss soil types and irrigation adjustment requirements, and dream up some design ideas in this exciting class.

 

Instructor: Curtis Manning

Price: $29, $24 member

 

Photo: Winger Photography

Crops in Pots

 

This class is great for apartment, condo and patio home dwellers who are short on outdoor space. Learn about the bounty of vegetable and herb container garden options. It is possible to grow vegetables without a plot of soil.

Learn about good container culture, soil, light, water, organic fertilizers, pesticides, frost protection, along with the best sized containers and how to create vertical support. You can even learn how to create mixed containers of vegetables, flowers and herbs.

 

Price: $37, $32 members

Instructor: Patti O'Neal

 

Photo: suzettesuzette (Flickr)

 

Gardening for Pollinators & Habitat Workshop

Rocky Mountain Gardening Elective

 

Did you know that there are 963 species of native bees on Colorado³ Front Range? All require your help to provide food, shelter and water. In addition we play host to countless other beneficial insects, birds and bats; all that perform the huge task of pollinating a third or more of the crops we eat, repopulate plants and add great diversity to our environment. How do we make our landscapes hospitable for these creatures and provide the proper food and shelter that will bring them to your landscape? Come learn which pollinators are attracted to which characteristics in certain plants, how to attract the ones you specifically want and how to select the perfect plants to do so. We will also cover the best choices for dealing with the ones you do not want in your garden and how to accept a little énsect pressure. This will inspire you to try new plants and watch your landscape come alive!

The work of pollinators impacts us through the food we eat. According to the Xerces Society, there are 4,000 species of native bees in North America, forming the most important group of pollinators. They require a source of food, water and shelter for raising their young and like all wildlife, they are affected by changes in landscapes, especially the loss of nesting sites. In man’s quest for neatness, the important nesting sites such as bare ground, dead trees and corners of rough grass have disappeared. Participants of this hands-on workshop create a nesting box to replicate some of the wildness that makes bees comfortable enough to nest in your landscape.

 

Price: $90, $80 member

 

Instructor: Patti O’Neal has been an instructor at the Gardens since 2000, specializing in sustainable vegetable gardening. She has been a featured speaker at regional conferences and organizations. She is a horticulturist for Colorado State University, focusing on food systems and urban agriculture and she coordinates the Master Gardener program for Jefferson County.

 

Growing Food in the High Mountains

Rocky Mountain Gardening Elective

You can grow food in the mountains! Cord and Penn Parmenter are determined to say ‘yes’ to mountain gardeners. Wind, hail, deer, bears, extreme temperatures -- they’ve heard it all. The Parmenters have been growing organic food at 8,120 ft. elevation since 1992 and their techniques and experiences apply to all of Colorado’s elevations and hardships. The mountains have a long history of providing a large amount of food for the state. This class covers many great foods that thrive in the mountains’ cool weather, wind proof season extenders, hail covers, raised bed preparation, compost options against bears, crop rotation, companion planting, succession planting, vegetables for the shade, mulching, seed saving and more. Altitude doesn’t matter; this class is designed to help all gardeners overcome the wild, wild, west. The Parmenters also touch on their successful, totally sustainable water-storage solar greenhouses and vegetable seed starting using recycled materials.

Can’t you just taste those fresh, mountain grown succulent greens, beans, squash, bok choi, and yes, even tomatoes, sweet corn and pumpkins!

 

Price: $59, $52 members

Instructors: Penn and Cord Parmenter are high altitude food growers. They live in the Wet Mountains in South Central Colorado and they apply a multitude of techniques to overcome the challenges of the high country. Their totally sustainable greenhouse provides food year round for them and their three boys.

 

How to Plant a Tree: Tree and Shrub Selection and Planting

Rocky Mountain Gardening Elective

Trees and shrubs are one of the greatest property investments and can greatly increase a home’s value. Trees are also expensive, so learn how to determine what species is best for your yard, where and when to plant it plant and how to care for it. Evergreens, deciduous trees and shrubs have varying preferred planting times and care strategies.

This class also shares tips on what to look for when you go to the nursery, how to dig a proper hole to insure the best root spread in the appropriate amount of time and when and how to prune. Also learn how to properly care for your tree to avoid transplant shock or winter desiccation injury. This class can make homeowners more confident when choosing or planting trees and shrubs or when supervising contractors.

 

Instructor: Patti O'Neal

Price: $44, $39 members

Mountain Tomatoes

Rocky Mountain Gardening Elective

We all know the tomato is the gate-way drug to gardening, the Holy Grail of the mountains is to grow a red tomato. Technically, the mountains and tomatoes don’t get along and this class explains why.

In 1991, Penn Parmenter was told she could not grow tomatoes in the mountains. Today, she is working with around 200 varieties of tomatoes at 8,120 ft. elevation in the Wet Mountains. Learn about tomato varieties from around the world, especially those grown in high, cold places. Learn how to find and adapt seed, create night-time protection, prepare soil, fight disease and enjoy the fruits of your labor. The world of tomato seed swapping is also explored.

Penn comes armed with high-altitude tomato seeds, plants, demos and tips for reaching success with the tomato. Join the addiction! No more green tomatoes! (Unless it's Green Zebra, or Green Doctors or Evergreen).

 

Instructors: Penn and Cord Parmenter are high altitude food growers. They live in the Wet Mountains in South Central Colorado and they apply a multitude of techniques to overcome the challenges of the high country. Their totally sustainable greenhouse provides food year round for them and their three boys.

Price: $32, $28 members

Passive Solar Greenhouse Growing

Rocky Mountain Gardening Elective

Penn and Cord Parmenter have been growing food in their passive solar sustainable greenhouse for 12 years. Their expertise is shared in this class to help take some of the mystery out of something that should be easy and yet can seem so hard. Matching appropriate plants to the microclimates within the greenhouse is crucial. Often the plants are the best teachers in the greenhouse and together participants learn how to work within the unique greenhouse eco-system.

Favorite foods, herbs and flowers are discussed as well as forcing plants for seed production, over wintering potted plants and succession planting for a year round harvest.

The Parmenters share tips for keeping the greenhouse organically under control from bugs and disease. Preventative methods and what to do when an outbreak strikes are discussed.

Penn and Cord lead busy lives with three kids and a business and yet they manage to grow food year round in their greenhouses. When life gets in the way and you’re thinking of turning your greenhouse into a shed, don’t despair because there are answers for successful greenhouse growing.

 

Instructors: Penn and Cord Parmenter

Price: $31, $26 members

See also "Sustainable Greenhouse Design" - offered on the same weekend!

Putting Your Rose Garden to Bed

Rocky Mountain Gardening Elective

Just about everyone grows a rose bush or two.Congress designated the rose as America s national floral emblem in 1986.The popularity of growing roses began thousands of years ago and continues today.The rose growing series offered by American Rose Society Consulting Rosarians and experts from the Denver Rose Society will cover how to grow healthy, easy care beautiful roses for years to come. The series covers secrets to successful rose growing, no pain pruning, versatile shrub roses, fragrant roses, and winter care. Choose one class or take them all and come away with confident rose growing skills and greater appreciation for the  Queen of Flowers. 

Preparing your roses for winter is the key to growing those fabulous flowers in the spring. Learn why fall and winter care keeps your roses healthy from year to year and how to prepare new rose beds for spring planting. Get tips on early transplanting or rearranging the rose bed. A recommended list of roses that do well along the Front Range and higher altitudes will be included to take home.

 

Instructor: Peggy Williams, Consulting Rosarian

Price: $32, $27 members

Seven Principles of Water-Smart Gardening

Rocky Mountain Gardening Required Course Group I

Gardening remains high and dry in the Rocky Mountain region! Water-Smart Gardening is an environmentally friendly way to create a beautiful home landscape that will thrive under low water conditions. Join this class to learn the principles of Water-Smart Gardening and some of the many plants that you can incorporate into your yard.

 

Instructor: David Winger

Price: $62, $55 members

Sustainable Greenhouse Design

Rocky Mountain Gardening Elective

Have you ever wondered if a greenhouse that needs NO supplemental heating or cooling could be made? The answer is yes!

No more over-heating and freezing in all-glazed greenhouses. The sustainable design balances the use of thermal mass, glazing, insulation and sun angles to achieve the stabilization needed in our extreme climate without the use of fossil fuels. Learn how to design a sustainable greenhouse from the ground up, using salvaged or new materials to achieve the look and performance you want. You can also use these techniques to improve an existing greenhouse.

This class is a comprehensive look at how passive solar greenhouses work and covers topics such as how to orient the building, basic principles of passive solar design including the use of stored water as thermal mass, simple math formulas to help guide your design, a materials list and drawings and calculations for a 13’ x 15’ greenhouse.

In 2000, the Parmenters built their first greenhouse out of 90% recycled materials on top of an 8,120 ft. elevation decomposed granite mountain. Since then, they have designed and built many more and are ready to share what they have learned about state-of-the-art materials and cost-saving strategies. Lose yourself in a year round garden sanctuary.

 

Price: $160, $150 members

Instructors: Penn and Cord Parmenter are high altitude food growers. They live in the Wet Mountains in South Central Colorado and they apply a multitude of techniques to overcome the challenges of the high country. Their totally sustainable greenhouse provides food year round for them and their three boys.

 

Top 10 Vegetables for the Mountains

This class covers our top 10 favorite vegetables for growing success in the mountains. We do cheat a little by listing a few groups – but these really are some of the most successful mountain-appropriate vegetables we’ve found. If you grow the plants on this list, you won’t believe how quickly you will have something to eat – so let’s get started!

We will discuss the plants characteristics and needs and how to deliver it to them. We will cover different ways to grow them as well so there is something for everyone. The list of vegetables that prefer the cool, mountain weather is much longer than the list that likes it super warm making it difficult to choose only 10!

This is a great class for beginners but experts might find a few useful ideas as well. If you are new to the mountains this class will get you started in the right direction.

Price: $32, $28 members

Instructors: Penn and Cord Parmenter

 

 

 

 

Troubleshooting in the Vegetable Garden: If A Tomato Could Talk

Rocky Mountain Gardening Elective

If your vegetables could talk, they would tell you exactly how to care for them properly to prevent disease or insect invasion. The next best thing is for you to participate in this class and learn what insects and diseases attack your vegetable gardens and containers and what you can do about it.

Learn about organic and inorganic management strategies, how they work and how to correctly apply them. This class stresses integrated pest management, a concept that uses the least invasive methods of pest control first to keep food safe and delicious.

 

Instructor: Patti O'Neal

Price: $31, $26 members

Understanding Front Range Soils

Rocky Mountain Gardening Required Course Group I

Soil is the bottom line in starting your garden successfully, and the properties of Front Range soils present unique challenges. By learning some simple physical and chemical properties of soil, including parent material and its formation, you can gain a better understanding of how plants grow in it and what to consider in plant selection and landscape design.

 

Instructor: Jean Reeder

Price: $92, $85 members

Using Soil Testing as a Landscape Management Tool

Rocky Mountain Gardening Elective

 

For all components of your landscape (veggie garden, tree and shrub areas, lawn, or ornamental flower beds) a soil test is the best way to check the growing potential of your soil. A soil test will guide you in determining which nutrients are deficient, and sometimes more importantly, which nutrient levels are excessive. The soil test also will tell you whether your soil’s organic matter content is sufficient to support healthy plant growth; whether you soil is too salty, or whether your soil’s pH is acceptable for the plants you want to grow. Come learn how to interpret a soil test report and how to use the data for making management decisions that promote the health of your landscape plants.

 

Instructor: Jean Reeder

Price: $44, $39 members

 

What Made My Good Plant Go Bad?

Rocky Mountain Gardening Elective

Did the glorious beauty promised by the garden catalog, nursery salesperson or garden designer fall flat? You may be surprised that insects and diseases are NOT the main cause of problems in the garden. Gardeners have more control thank they may think over how many plant problems. This provides an overview of the most common plant challenges and what you can do to prevent their annual recurrence. The course focuses on the root causes that attract pests and disease to your garden and what to do about it.

 

Price: $44, $39 members

Instructor: Patti O'Neal

Special Instructions: This class is a lecture and hands on lab. You may bring a sample of a plant or turf you want diagnosed to class. Registration confirmation includes info on how to collect a good sample.

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