Growing From Seed for the Landscape

In partnership with the Maine Landscape and Nursery Association, Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens presents the Green Spotlight Series, featuring local and national researchers, instructors, and field professionals from the green industry discussing topics valuable to peer professionals.

Sowing native plants is becoming more and more popular, but what, when, and how to cultivate them remains an area of uncertainty. Leslie will discuss sowing native plants for a variety of successful landscape settings, including the methods and timing for sowing seeds that will lead to strong germination rates and long-term growth, from what and where we can sow outdoors in November to what should be sown indoors during February or March. Leslie’s knowledge about propagating native plants will be valuable to any landscape or nursery professional.

The variety of topics in Green Spotlight Series is designed for a diverse range of landscape-related professionals from nursery and lawn-care specialists to arborists, landscapers, gardeners, and landscape designers/architects. MELNA members are eligible for the CMBG member price and will earn recertification credits and several sessions will count toward the State of Maine's Pesticide License recertification. Please inquire regarding credit approval for all other network agencies.

Location: Online
Instructor: Leslie Duthie
Price: $10 / $15

Irrigation Management: Greenhouse & Nursery

Water management can impact plant health and nutrient management. Here, we’ll discuss the pros and cons of a variety of water management systems available at greenhouses and nurseries. We’ll also briefly cover new technologies for managing water. After the talk, participants are welcome to pose questions and share new ideas.

Learn More
Location: Online
Instructor: Stephanie Burnett
Price: $10 / $15

What is Natural Design?

True native design encompasses more than simply using native plants. Considering ecological process in the design, planting, and management of native landscapes may very well be the missing components. This presentation examines how alternative approaches on everything from selecting, arranging, and spacing plants to the simple act of weeding can yield a more easily maintained landscape, one that express the beauty and ecological richness of our native surroundings.

Learn More
Location: Online
Instructor: Larry Weaner
Price: $10 / $15

Water Management in Urban Landscapes

Managing hydrology in cities presents profound design challenges including: finding space for daylighting and unsealing of pavement; managing urban flooding from extreme precipitation events; and restoring surface and subsurface water quality. These challenges are increasingly complex, given climate change and global urbanization. Landscape professionals have the skills and knowledge needed to meet these challenges while, at the same time, bringing beauty and resilience to our cities.

Learn More
Location: Online
Instructor: Jack Ahern
Price: $10 / $15

Efficiency in Greenhouse Growing

This talk will cover the above-ground aspects of greenhouse production and how to make it more productive, efficient, and profitable. Jeff Marstaller, greenhouse grower and owner of solar-powered Cozy Acres in North Yarmouth, will share his experience and a variety operations factors to consider, such as location, resources, and business model. He will speak to a spectrum of subtopics including selection, timing and quantities of crops, potted plant production, processes, goals and expectations, and details of plant sales and distribution. Both the beginner and the experienced greenhouse grower will find a valuable chance to network and share knowledge among peers.

Learn More
Location: Online
Instructor: Jeff Marstaller
Price: $10 / $15

Landscaping with Wild Edibles

Growing edibles, especially natives, is a practice gaining traction in New England’s landscape industry. Incorporating native and wild edible plants provides a number of benefits; it adds biodiversity to the landscape, and eating produce straight from the garden deepens a connection to nature. Andy Brand, the Gardens’ Curator of Living Collections, will discuss some of his favorite perennial native edibles, from the woody to the herbaceous, highlighting design applications for both function and beauty.

Learn More
Location: Online
Instructor: Andy Brand
Price: $10 / $15

Nature’s Best Hope: An Introduction

Global insect declines and three billion fewer birds in North America are a bleak reality check regarding the how poorly our current landscape designs sustain the plants and animals that sustain us. The good news is there are steps we can take. We are nature’s best hope, and Doug Tallamy will discuss simple actions each of us can—and must—take to reverse declining biodiversity.

Learn More
Location: Online
Instructor: Doug Tallamy
Price: $10 / $15

Fruit Vines and Strawberries: What’s New?

Vines, especially edible vines, have been designed into gardens for centuries as canopy, food, and privacy, adding contrast and dimension to any landscape setting. This presentation will discuss new and classic varieties, plus how to manage the grapes, hardy kiwis, strawberries, and hops that work well in Maine landscapes. David Handley, berry fruit specialist at Highmoor Farm, will discuss what's available and appropriate for different applications and review growth habits, flowering times, colors, and what varieties will provide fruit through much of the season.

Learn More
Location: Online
Instructor: David Handley
Price: $10 / $15

Fruit Trees: Yielding Beauty and Flavor

Renae Moran, a fruit tree specialist at Highmoor Farm for UMaine Cooperative Extension, will discuss a selection of fruit trees for the home landscape, how much space they need, and the basics of espalier training for small spaces. Dwarf cherries, apples, and new peach varieties are just a few of the options to consider, all appropriate for a variety of landscape applications. Join us to learn more about, or to refresh and update, your fruit tree repertoire.

Learn More
Location: Online
Instructor: Renae Moran
Price: $10 / $15

Foundational Factors for Sustainable Turf

A sustainable and ecologically sound turf system succeeds when it is built on a foundation of sound agronomic practices matched to site characteristics and turf performance objectives. We will consider how factors such as aspect, light, soil condition and health, proximity to environmentally sensitive areas, and degree of turf maturity can inform decisions regarding implementation and timing of key cultural practices. In particular, we will examine the selection and establishment of appropriate turfgrass species and cultivars as an essential component of turf sustainability.

Learn More
Location: Online
Instructor: Mary Owen
Price: $10 / $15

Orientation for Botanical Arts Certificate

Join us for an online introduction to CMBG's Botanical Arts Certificate program. Our program offers a broad palette of botanically inspired classes. Enrolled students select courses that suit their interests and work toward a final project. Learn about this program and its classes, and decide if this creative curriculum inspires you.

Location: Online
Instructor: Caroline Davis
Price: $25

Form and Texture in Graphite 1

This virtual class delves deeply into using graphite to accurately depict simple botanical subjects using fruits and vegetables. Emphasis on highlights, midtones, and shadow areas. Using a light source and three-dimensional armature, artists understand concave and convex shapes. Students complete a three-part series of drawings, line, armature, and full tonal graphite drawing.

Learn More
Location: Online
Instructor: Mindy Lighthipe
Price: $50 / $65

Sow for the Future: Wild to Cultivated and Underused Edibles (Webinar)

What's the difference between a wild plant and a garden crop? MOFGA's organic crop specialist, Caleb Goossen, will speak about seed selection and seed saving, identify the differences between wild plants and modern hybrid cultivars, and the strengths and weaknesses that might influence your decision to grow these wild-to-domestic varieties. MOFGA's landscape coordinator, Jack Kertesz, will share some of his favorite underutilized edible annual and perennial plants to incorporate into a variety of gardens or naturalized into the landscape.

Location: Online
Instructor: Caleb Goossen
Price: $16 / $20

Establishing Trees in the Urban Landscape

Urban trees are indispensable in making our cities livable. In the past 15 years, researchers in urban forestry have developed methods of quantifying the ecosystem benefits provided by urban trees. In our increasingly paved cities, tree services are essential, as it has become clear that poor practices in tree selection and soil preparation have reduced the potential benefits of planting such trees. As our metropolitan areas are so heterogeneous, not all trees will do well in all sites. However, the most ubiquitous constraint to healthy, urban tree growth is soil compaction and limited accessible soil volume, leading to stunted trees that cannot withstand increasingly hot and dry summers. Fortunately, there are many practices that can overcome these challenges.

Learn More
Location: Online
Instructor: Nina Lauren Bassuk
Price: $10 / $15

Kitchen Garden Design: Plant Selection and Placement (Webinar)

Too often, gardeners rush to buy seeds and seedlings before considering placement, growth habit, and time of harvest. In this class, Ellen Ecker Ogden, author of The New Heirloom Garden, will take you through the process of selecting and growing plants from seed, the reasons to procure seedlings, and where in a garden plants perform best to yield successful, tasty produce, easy growth, and beauty. Discussion will include best varieties for flavor, fragrant and edible flowers, growing in succession, saving your own seed for the following year, and much more. Ellen Ecker Ogden's book will be available for purchase on-site at the Gardenshop at Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens.

Location: Online
Instructor: Ellen Ecker Ogden
Price: $34 / $40

Landscaping with Deer

Most Maine gardeners and general property owners have had to deal with deer venturing out of the wild and into the cultivated landscape. Deer are part of the ecology in Maine, but an increase in their populations, coupled with displacement of their habitat, have caused them to become a nuisance animal in residential garden settings. In this online lecture, landscape designer Cheryl Salatino will discuss design strategies, plant selection, and other deer deterrent and management methods to prevent your plant investments from being grazed upon.

Location: Online
Instructor: Cheryl Salatino
Price: $16 / $20

Fundamentals of Pruning (Webinar)

Learn the fundamentals of pruning in this online lecture and demonstration. Enjoy it as a refresher or, if new to it, gain the confidence to know what, how, and when to prune. Whether you’ve attempted to prune in the past with unsuccessful results, or you've been afraid to prune because you're not sure if you'll damage your plants, you’ll leave this lecture far more confident. We'll discuss appropriate tools, timing, goals, and techniques that will assist you in your pruning projects.

Location: Online
Instructor: Irene Barber
Price: $16 / $20

Gardening With Nature (SOLD OUT)

Anna Fialkoff, Program Manager at Wild Seed Project, will offer a virtual presentation explaining and featuring native plant selection and gardening practices to support and increase biodiversity whcih lead to beautiful gardens with minimal manual labor.

Learn More
Location: Online
Instructor: Anna Fialkoff
Price: $16 / $20

Perennial Polycultures (Webinar)

Perennial polycultures aim to grow useful plants together in a way that minimizes competition and maximizes cooperation. They include functional species to fix nitrogen, to serve as groundcover, and to attract pollinators and other beneficial insects. Perennial crops providing fruit, nuts, and vegetables anchor such designs. This workshop will review best practices for perennial polyculture design, introduce a palette of species suited to Maine, and allow participants to design sample polycultures.

Location: Online
Instructor: Eric Toensmeier
Price: $30 / $38

Sow For the Future: Native Woodland Perennials (Webinar)

In this online lecture, Shawn Jalbert, nurseryman and plant propagator at Native Haunts, will share the tricks to sowing, growing, and collecting the seeds of our native perennials, plants that thrive in woodlands or any shade-garden setting. He’ll discuss the ecologically responsible and effective ways to grow native plants from seed, resulting in a healthy, green living carpet that can operate as a long-term, cost-effective, and low-maintenance mulch.

Location: Online
Instructor: Shawn Jalbert
Price: $16 / $20

Exploring Wetland Fauna (Webinar)

Join us for a visually captivating virtual introduction to the life inhabiting CMBG’s wetlands. From inconspicuous invertebrates to loveable herptiles (i.e., amphibians), discover the diversity that flourishes in these wetland waters. CMBG's Bridget VerVaet will help students learn ways to find and identify these creatures during their own nature walks.

This program is alternately available as an outdoor field-study class.

Location: Online
Instructor: Bridget VerVaet
Price: $10 / $15

Pollinators: Butterflies and Moths (Webinar)

Join Alicia Miller, our Lepidoptera specialist, to learn more about some of Maine’s native butterfly and moth species. This virtual slideshow presentation will explore key identifying features of different Lepidoptera including morphology, adaptations, difference in range and habitat, and evolutionary history. We’ll discuss the importance of host and nectar plants and how you can help support Maine’s native species right in your own backyard.
This course can be taken on its own or to accompany the “Pollinators: Butterflies and Moths” field-study course.

Location: Online
Instructor: Alicia Miller
Price: $10 / $15

Soils, Composts & Mulches for Beginners (Webinar)

Soil, compost, and mulches are fundamental elements for the garden, but it’s easy to become confused, overwhelmed, or unsure about what’s what. Mark Hutchinson, Soil and Compost Educator at the University of Maine Cooperative Extension, will discuss these elements, addressing in-ground and above-ground applications. Mark will provide an overview of proper selection of manufactured soil blends, mulches, and amendments and cover the basics of the soil chemistry and biology that determine the need for specified amendments.

Mark Hutchinson is an Extension Professor with the University of Maine Cooperative Extension with over 20 years of compost experience, including teaching and researching. He currently oversees the University of Maine Compost Research and Education Center at Highmoor Farm in Monmouth, Maine. Mark's research is focused on the use of compost in agronomic systems and the compost process.  Mark travels internationally to consult on large-scale composting systems.

Location: Online
Instructor: Mark Hutchinson
Price: $16 / $20

Pesky Garden Problems

In this webinar, Gary Fish, Maine’s State Horticulturist, will introduce and discuss common pests, including noxious to invasive insects, blights, rusts, diseases, and deficiencies. This class is geared toward those who aren’t necessarily scientists, but who thoroughly enjoy gardening and want to learn the symptoms and signs of infestation as well as prevention and management strategies. Students are welcome to e-mail pictures of specific plant concerns in advance of class to the class host, Irene Barber.

Gary Fish is the State Horticulturalist at the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry. He is a past coordinator of the Maine YardScaping Partnership and manager of the Pesticide Control Board. He has a B.S. in forest and wildlife management from the University of Maine, College of Forest Resources and has been a licensed professional forester since 1985. An aspiring landscape and nature photographer, he attributes his love of plants to his mother and her beautiful rose and rock gardens.

Location: Online
Instructor: Gary Fish
Price: $16 / $20

Pollinators: Bees & Beyond (Webinar)

Get to know your backyard pollinators by exploring the diversity of northeastern bees. This virtual bees-and-beyond tour will teach you to recognize bees and distinguish one species from another. We will also explore their lifestyle, nesting habits, and the unique adaptations that make them nature’s best pollinators. Learn about bees’ relationships with plants, including the latest discoveries in plant-pollinator interactions.

This course may be taken on its own, but makes a great accompaniment to the field-study course, “Pollinators: Bees and Beyond.”

Location: Online
Instructor: Sarah Callan
Price: $16 / $20

Drawing Seeds Under the Microscope

Seeds are rarely depicted in art, but that’s exactly what you’ll do in this online workshop. Using a standard microscope or handheld digital microscope, participants will explore, then depict, the textures and patterns of magnified seeds. After a brief discussion of vellum’s properties and types, we'll lay out drawings before transferring them to the material itself.

Learn More
Location: Online
Instructor: Carol Woodin
Price: $145 / $160

Growing in a Changing Climate

Climate change is already impacting gardens, but how we garden can also impact climate change for good or for ill. We will look at projected changes to Maine’s climate and those gardening strategies we can employ to adapt to the new “normal.” We will also look at how to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from our gardens, from fertilizers to rototilling, and techniques to remove excess carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and store it in our soils and in living perennial biomass.

Eric Toensmeier is the author of Paradise Lot, Perennial Vegetables, and The Carbon Farming Solution, and co-author of Edible Forest Gardens. He served as a Senior Fellow for Project Drawdown, for whom he authored the recent publication Farming Our Way Out of the Climate Crisis. Eric’s home garden in Massachusetts is a highly diverse edible landscape on a tenth of an acre.

Location: Online
Instructor: Eric Toensmeier
Price: $30 / $38

Gardening with Ornamental Grasses (Webinar)

Ornamental grasses can add so much to a garden setting, whether in meadow restoration or to blend colors or add textural and structural accents to perennial gardens. Join Syretha Brooks, gardener and garden designer, for this interactive slideshow and learn more about the diverse selection of safe, non-native and native grasses to consider for your landscape. Syretha will offer management suggestions and habits for the species presented. Students also have the option to register for a separate ornamental grasses field-study tour happening later in the summer at the Gardens.

Syretha Brooks is a horticulturist and project manager at Pretty Flowers, a landscape and design company based in Brunswick, Maine. A native of Harpswell, Maine, she has a degree in fine arts from Smith College, which has greatly aided in developing her eye for plant designing and curation. Syretha was formerly a horticulturist at New York City’s Wave Hill Gardens before returning to her home state of Maine and working as a horticulturist here at Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens for four years.

Location: Online
Instructor: Syretha Brooks
Price: $16 / $20

Form and Texture in Graphite 2

This class is a continuation of Form & Texture with Graphite, Part 1. Develop an understanding of graphite while applying it to more complex natural subjects such as a pineapples, pinecones, artichokes, or the interior of a pepper. Skills include rendering different pigments in greyscale and exploring the tonal quality and textural differences between surfaces. Learn to translate multi-colored subjects into tonal values while maintaining form and perspective.

Learn More
Location: Online
Instructor: Mindy Lighthipe
Price: $95 / $120

Horticulture For Gardeners (Webinar)

Prepare for a mindful gardening season by beginning or refreshing your understanding of horticulture. This introductory course will cover a wide variety of horticultural topics important for home gardeners to consider when growing and managing plants on any scale. Subjects will range from the theoretical to the practical, beginning with scientific foundations such as plant nomenclature, biology and ecology, pollination, and propagation. Other topics will include applied and artistic practices exploring plant selection, cultivation, and installation of new plants.

Location: Online
Instructor: Dan Robarts
Price: $16 / $20

Making Black and White Infrared Photographs

This is the first of three interactive lectures by renowned photographer Ron Rosenstock. Students may take just one or all three; each program lasts approximately 50 minutes with a Q&A period to follow. In this lecture, Ron Rosenstock will cover the various infrared conversions, advantages and disadvantages of each, and showcase samples of his work to illustrate key differences.

Learn More
Location: Online
Instructor: Ron Rosenstock
Price: $20 / $35

Maintaining Creative Energy in Photography

This is the second of three interactive lectures by renowned photographer Ron Rosenstock. Students may take just one or all three; each program lasts approximately 50 minutes with a Q&A period to follow. In this lecture, Ron will cover how photographers can maintain and continue creative efforts when circumstances (and plans) change. He will share a variety of photographic subjects and projects that are always available for photographers to explore.

Learn More
Location: Online
Instructor: Ron Rosenstock
Price: $20 / $35

Drawing and Painting Monarch Butterflies and Milkweed

Tuesday and Thursday, June 22 and 24 | This two-day workshop focuses on the monarch butterfly's life cycle in symbiotic relationship to its host plant, milkweed. Depict flight by learning basic butterfly anatomy and wing positioning. Understand basic metamorphosis and how the butterfly interacts in the pollination process. Color application can be in watercolor and/or colored pencil. All levels welcome!

Learn More
Location: Online
Instructor: Mindy Lighthipe
Price: $95 / $125