Certificate Program in Native Plants and Ecological Horticulture
“The expert instruction and stimulating field and classroom studies have energized me to pursue more sustainable gardening methods and continue to be an active environmental steward.”
~ Jean Rosenberg, Certificate Graduate
Enrollment is open for new students in the Certificate in Native Plants and Ecological Horticulture program! We also enthusiastically welcome back previous years’ students who are continuing in the program. In addition, classes are also open to individuals who are not pursuing the certificate, though priority will be given to those enrolled.
To enroll in the certificate program, contact Melissa Cullina, Director of Education & Staff Botanist. For detailed descriptions and to register for individual classes, just follow the links from the list of program classes and electives below, or scroll through the calendar on the homepage. For additional information, call 207-633-4333, ext. 101. You can also learn more through our FloraFind tour.
The field-based Certificate in Native Plants and Ecological Horticulture program instructs amateur and professional gardeners alike about Maine’s diverse flora and its uses in ecologically responsible horticulture. The program is tailored for Maine gardeners by featuring the climate conditions, specific challenges, plants, and natural communities found right here in the Pine Tree State.
Students benefit from engaging, hands-on courses describing native plants, how they function and reproduce, their natural habitats, and best garden applications. They discover how plants interact with their growing environment, and they learn to select appropriate native plants for various site conditions. They will become skilled at preparing and maintaining gardens using sustainable methods such as composting, integrated and organic pest management, and low water inputs. Optional workshops and field trips focusing on specific skills, such as seed collection and propagation, identification of wild plants, creating green roofs, methods of composting, etc., allow students to customize the program to suit their own interests. To ensure a top-quality experience for participants, admission to the program is limited to only 15 new students per year.
The program consists of 11 required courses and several elective workshops or trips (see below). Students may progress through the curriculum at their own pace; a highly motivated student would be able to complete the program over the course of 19 months (two growing seasons). Instructors are both on-staff and guest experts with a variety of specialties. Courses are held in the LEED Platinum Bosarge Family Education Center, on the Gardens’ grounds, and afield on the beautiful Boothbay peninsula and beyond.
“Whether you’re a horticulture professional, or simply passionate about gardening , if you’re seeking a deeper understanding of Maine’s native plants and ecological gardening, this program is just the thing for you.”
~ William Cullina, Certificate Program Faculty
COURSE LIST WITH LINKS TO DETAILED DESCRIPTIONS AND INSTRUCTOR BIOS
Suggested Year 1 Classes:
Soils for Gardeners with Lois Berg Stack – May 7 (10 a.m.-4 p.m.)
The Life of a Plant: An Introduction to Botany with Lauren Stockwell – June 24-26 (9 a.m.-2 p.m.)
Introduction to the Native Flora of Maine with Melissa Cullina – August 20-22 (9 a.m.-3 p.m.)
Horticultural Ecology with Bill Cullina – Sept. 12 & 13 (9 a.m.-4 p.m.)
Invasive Plants with Ted Elliman – Oct. 4 & 5 (10 a.m.-4 p.m.)
Suggested Year 2 Classes:
Shaping a Natural Site into a Landscaped Space with Irene Brady Barber and Lisa Cowan – April 4-6 (9:30 a.m.-1:00 p.m.)
Selecting Native Plants for the Maine Garden: Herbaceous Plants with Bill Cullina – May 17 & July 11 (9 a.m.-4 p.m.)
Natural Communities of Maine with Ted Elliman – July 26 & 27 (10 a.m.-4 p.m.)
Sustainable Horticultural Practices with Irene Brady Barber – Sept. 26-28 (9 a.m.-noon on 9/26; 9 a.m.-2 p.m. on 9/27 & 9/28)
Selecting Native Plants for the Maine Garden: Woody Plants – October 17-19 (9 a.m-2 p.m.)
Gardening for Wildlife (to be offered in 2014)
ELECTIVES FOR 2013
Pruning Basics with Will Bridges – March 2 (9 a.m.-noon)
From Seed to Tree: A Propagation Workshop with Michael Dirr – July 1 (9 a.m.-noon)
Survival in the Darwinian Garden with Karen Bussolini – August 14 (10 a.m.-4 p.m.)
Wildflower Propagation with Bill Cullina – October 8 (9 a.m.-1 p.m.)