Archived Q&A and Reviews
We just moved to South Berkeley and have a large backyard with alot of potential. I know next to nothing about gardening but would love install a planter or two and grow a few easy fruits or veggies (strawberries, zucchini, etc). Nothing to complex, but I'd love to be able to eat from my own yard. Can anyone recommend a introductory gardening class in the area? I don't think I will ever be a hard core gardener and currently don't have any interest in trees or flowers, but am hoping there is a Gardening 101 class out there? Novice gardener
The oakland institute of urban homesteading offers exactly what you are looking for. They have classes for the urban gardener and just at the end of this month, there's a class about having an orchard in you yard. Check their classes and calendar here: http://iuhoakland.com/gardening.html Gaby
Try the Institute for Urban Homesteading! They have lots of awesome classes, and are very affordable. www.iuhoakland.com Garden Fan
I took a fantastic Garden Design for Homeowners class at the BUilding Education Center, which unfortunately has closed, that you would have liked. However, I believe that the instructor, Cece Littlepage,, does horticultural consultation and garden 'coaching'. You can reach her at 510-848-4178. Melissa
Although I don't know of a class or series of classes that cover Gardening 101, I do have some tips and recommendations now that we have lived in our new house and had a garden for two summers (and a container garden the year before we bought our house). We are also new to gardening, and have learned a lot from our efforts.
We did attend a good workshop/class at Evergreen Nursery in San Leandro. It was very informative, all about growing tomatoes and we could ask questions from the expert. You can sign up for emails from them to hear about free classes they are offering. Or just check their website for upcoming classes. You might want to check out other garden nurseries to see if they provide classes.
After checking out a lot of gardening books, we most use the Sunset 20 Minute Gardener and the Sunset Western Garden Book (the latter is basically an encyclopedia of plants and useful information on climate zones and some gardening basics. Worth checking out at the library to see how useful it is for you). They produce beautiful books on gardening full of useful tips.
I also got a Garden Problem Solver (rodale) used at a library book sale. Useful when you want to find out what to do about snails or find out what is eating your arugula.
I'm looking forward to hearing what other suggestions you get on BPN! Kirstin