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Treasure Valley Gardening Certificate Program

Gardening in the greater Boise area is a unique challenge and different from gardening just about anywhere else in the nation.

We have quirky soils, only 11″ of rain, smokin’ hot summers and bitterly cold winters, but plants and landscapes can thrive here. In the Treasure Valley Gardening Certificate program you’ll get equipped with the knowledge you need to care for your yard from highly qualified, local experts.

$350 per person for non-members and $300 for members
January – September 2022

Sign Up Here

 

To earn a Certificate, you must attend 12 core classes and at least 2 of the 4 electives. Topics include Practical Botany for Gardeners, Plant Health, Vegetable Gardening, Treasure Valley Weeds, Tree Planting & Care, and Pruning. Classes meet on Tuesday or Wednesday evenings via Zoom from 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm.

The Plan

🌱 Sign Up for your classes online or by calling 208-343-8649
🌱 Learn from local experts
🌱 Grow an amazing garden

Sign Up Here

 

2022 Syllabus

Practical Botany for Gardeners

Practical Botany for Gardeners
Tuesday, January 4th, 6:30-8:30

Anni Jack, IBG Adult Education Coordinator

A bit of botany can lead to better-informed gardeners. This class will explore plant parts, processes, and naming conventions. You’ll come away with an appreciation of plants in your garden as well as some practical knowledge you can apply to promote healthy, flourishing plants.

Tree Pruning

Tree Pruning
Tuesday, January 18th, 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm

Matt Perkins, City Arborist, City of Meridian Parks and Rec

Join us as Certified Arborist Matt Perkins shows the how, why, when, and where of proper tree pruning.  Matt will discuss use of proper tools, safety practices and why you should have a clear goal in mind before you start pruning a tree.

Plant Propagation

Plant Propagation
Tuesday, February 8th, 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm

Nell Lindquist, IBG Greenhouse & Nursery Coordinator

Satisfy your appetite for new plants and save money by learning the basics of propagation. With this introduction to the art and science of starting plants, you can start your own vegetables from seed, or increase your stock of a favorite ornamental through cuttings or divisions. You will learn propagation methods for a variety of plants, as well as the techniques and materials to help ensure success.

Soil Science

Soil Science
Tuesday, February 15th, 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm

Dan Schults, Horticulture Technology, College of Western Idaho

One million tiny organisms can exist in a single pinch of soil. As a living, breathing foundation of natural landscapes, it’s critical that we take care of the world beneath our feet. This class will introduce the basics of what soil is, how it works, and what gardeners and horticulturists need to know to care for it. We’ll also learn how organic matter (AKA compost) can impact microscopic relationships that plants (and people!) depend on.

Vegetable Gardening

Vegetable Gardening
Tuesday, February 22nd, 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm

Ariel Agenbroad, University of Idaho Extension Educator

Can you feed your family from your backyard? The answer is yes! This class will guide you through the basics of planning and planting a vegetable garden that will provide you with a predictable bounty of your favorite fresh foods over three seasons.

Landscape Site Survey and Design Basics

Landscape Site Survey and Design Basics
Tuesday, March 8th, 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm

Sara A Meier, Landscape Designer, Green Thumb SAM

Learn the two distinct steps of a site study – inventory and analysis.  Identify all the vital conditions about a site and determine how they should influence the eventual design solution.  In part two of the class, learn landscape design basics and how to incorporate them into your plan by thinking of your space as a series of outdoor rooms.

Wildland-Urban Interface Gardening

Wildland-Urban Interface Gardening
Tuesday, March 15th, 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm

Brett Van Paepeghem, South Idaho Project Manager, Idaho Firewise
Andrea Dorman, Horticulturist & Outreach Coordinator, Idaho Firewise

Learn ways to create survivable space that reduces the risk of wildfire damage to your home. Brett will discuss the principles of flammable materials reduction and the concept of firewise landscape zones. Participants will learn which plants to avoid as well as recommended plants that are more fire resistant. Andrea will discuss firewise landscape design principles including plant placement, mulch recommendations, and suggested plant combinations for landscaping in the wildland-urban interface.

Xeric and Native Plants

Xeric and Native Plants
Tuesday, March 22nd, 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm

Ann DeBolt, Botanist

What is “xeriscaping?” How do you determine if a plant is native?  Local botanist Ann DeBolt will discuss these topics and what makes certain plants suitable and adapted to our arid region.  She will share a selection of desirable plants and describe their needs.

Water Efficient Irrigation

Water Efficient Irrigation
Tuesday, April 12th, 6:30 – 8:30 pm

Graham Knight, IBG Horticulturist

Learn how to make the most of your irrigation system.  This class will discuss techniques, practices, and methods for water conservation.  Graham will teach a beginner level class with the intent of helping students learn how to adjust and retrofit residential irrigation systems.

Treasure Valley Weeds

Treasure Valley Weeds
Tuesday, April 26th, 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm

Daniel Murphy, IBG Collections Curator

Our gardens are constantly being threatened by interlopers – unwanted plants that keep popping up uninvited.  Be on your best defense by learning how to identify and manage common Treasure Valley Weeds, some of which are more noxious than others.  We will arm you with the information you need to battle weeds wisely.

Plant Health I: Diagnosis

Plant Health I: Diagnosis
Tuesday, May 10th, 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm

Sierra Laverty, Horticulturist, Idaho Plant Doctor

Learn how to become a horticulture detective!  Assessing plant problems can be a difficult task.  This class will teach gardeners and horticulturists the process of piecing together clues to answer the question, “What’s wrong with my plant?” Join Certified Plant Diagnostician, Sierra Laverty, as we uncover the subtle differences between pest presence and nutrient deficiencies, over and under watering, among many other ailments.

Plant Health II: Management

Plant Health II: Management
Tuesday, May 24th, 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm

Sierra Laverty, Horticulturist, Idaho Plant Doctor

Caring for plants is a life-long learning experience.  Understanding the basics of plant health is critical to managing a thriving landscape.  Integrated Plant Health Management (IPHM) utilizes the principles of problem prevention, pest biology, and science-based solutions to reduce risks to plant health.

Habitat Gardening

Habitat Gardening
Wednesday, June 15th, 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm

Anni Jack, IBG Adult Education Coordinator

Create a haven for birds, beneficial insects, and other wildlife!  Learn gardening techniques and landscape features you can use to attract and provide food, water, and shelter for local wildlife.

Small Space and Urban Gardening

Small Space and Urban Gardening
Wednesday, July 13th, 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm

Anni Jack, IBG Adult Education Coordinator

Small outdoor spaces have potential for big impact!  Learn methods to maximize your space to grow year-long produce.   Annual and perennial stars of the smaller space garden will be highlighted as well as care and maintenance techniques.

Fall Planting & Purposeful Perennials

Fall Planting & Purposeful Perennials
Tuesday, September 13th , 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm

Leslie Blackburn, College of Western Idaho Horticulture Associate Professor, Local Gardener

This session will cover the selection of, planting, and designing with herbaceous and small woody perennials. Explore purposeful selection and planting with well adapted plants for local soil and climate. Assess color, seasonality, and combinations suitable for all garden styles. The course will provide examples of successful perennial plantings and timelines for maintenance and planting schedules.

Tree Planting and Care

Tree Planting and Care
Tuesday, September 27th, 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm

Matt Perkins, City Arborist, City of Meridian Parks and Rec

Trees are important, functional features of the landscape. Matt will advise on how to select trees best suited for the Treasure Valley, how to plant them properly, provide a season by season overview of basic maintenance, and suggest when it is time to call in an arborist.