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There is something for everyone at the Berkshire Botanical Garden.  Below is a list of our scheduled events classes, and exhibits.  For details on any individual listing, just click on the event for more information.  If you still have questions, feel free to call the garden at 413.298.3926.  See you at the Garden!

Sep
5
Tue
Garden Practicum (required) @ Education Center at Berkshire Botanical Garden
Sep 5 @ 5:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Initial Fall Meeting: Tuesday, September 5, 5 pm

Garden practcium Tree Planting

The practicum complements classroom work through hands-on training in the garden. Work alongside garden staff practicing gardening techniques, usually beginning with a demonstration and instruction. Activities include propagation, transplanting, tree care, pruning, dividing, planting, cultivation and maintenance of annuals, perennials, shrubs and trees. Students need to complete 15 hours of work scheduled on Saturdays and/or weekdays, usually Wednesday or Thursday, throughout the year.  Required for Certification. Students may sign up for either the fall or spring term.   

Instructors – Berkshire Botanical Garden Staff

Herbaceous Plants I (required) @ Education Center at Berkshire Botanical Garden
Sep 5 @ 5:30 pm – 8:30 pm

May 16 Land of Geraniums3Classes meet on Tuesdays, September 5 – 26, from 5:30 – 8:30pm.

Learn about the basic herbaceous plants used in the garden setting including identification, planting, fertilizing, pest control and pruning.  Perennial selection will be the focus, although some time will be spent on annuals and bulbs.  This offering is essential for the serious gardener. Students should dress for outdoor field study including sturdy, waterproof footwear and warm outer clothing.

Instructor – David Burdick, B.S., a distinguished plantsman and zealous collector, shows regularly at the American Daffodil Society exhibition.  A practicing horticulturalist, he has worked at Berkshire Botanical Garden and Windy Hill Farm.  An engaging teacher, his latest venture is a specialty plant and cut flower business at Holiday Farm, Dalton, Massachusetts.

Discounted price for 4 Fall Level I courses: $650

Click here for class handouts

Oct
3
Tue
Ornamental Woody Plants (required) @ Education Center at Berkshire Botanical Garden
Oct 3 @ 5:30 pm – 8:30 pm

aboutgarden2Classes meet on Tuesdays, October 3 – 24, from 5:30 – 8:30pm.

Focus on the bones of the garden with a survey of ornamental woody plants for residential landscape design. This course will cover ornamental shrubs, small flowering trees, shade trees, and broadleaf and needle evergreens.  Students will become familiar with the many garden-worthy woody plants that thrive in Zone 5.  Course covers plant ID, selection, siting, cultivation and possible design uses.

Instructor – Elisabeth Cary, M.A. is Education Director at Berkshire Botanical Garden.  She organizes the Horticulture Certificate program and has a special interest in woody plants.

Suggested texts:
Dirr’s Hardy Trees and Shrubs, An Illustrated Encyclopedia
Michael A. Dirr
Timber Press, Inc.  c.1997
ISBN 0-88192-404-0

Manual of Woody Landscape Plants
Michael A. Dirr
Fifth Edition
Stipes Publishing LLC c. 1975 Revised 1998
ISBN 0-87563-800-7

Discounted price for 4 Fall Level I courses: $650 (edit)

Oct
13
Fri
Field Study of New England Plant Communities (H, D, NP) @ Education Center at Berkshire Botanical Garden
Oct 13 @ 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm

This class meets on Friday, October 13, 4 – 6 pm & Saturday, October 14 10 am – 4 pm

The Friday lecture will cover many of the forest, meadow, and wetland habitats found in Berkshire County, discussing their physical and ecological features–topography, geology, soils, and moisture–as well as their characteristic plant associations, including both common and rare plants. The Saturday field trip will take us to a variety of forested, open, and wetland habitats, and we will take a close look at the flora and features of each of them.  We will also discuss impacts of invasive species, and possible changes to natural communities in response to climate change. We will travel by passenger van.  Please dress for weather and bring a bagged lunch.

Instructor-Ted Elliman, M.S.

Oct
22
Sun
Extending the Season’s Harvest Growing Vegetables for Four Seasons @ Offsite in Tyringham, MA
Oct 22 @ 10:00 am – 4:00 pm

Lecture/offsite field study to Woven Roots Farm, Tyringham, MA (co-enrolled with Horticulture Certificate Program)

Learn how to extend the season’s harvest to enjoy your own garden greens throughout the late fall and early spring months. Consider growing under cover in an unheated greenhouse, cold frame or high/low poly tunnels, and learn techniques needed to achieve a true four-season harvest. Investigate a variety of structures and learn the pros and cons of each. Crop selection, soil preparation, timing, planting, cultivation and harvesting will be covered, with a focus on early and late season production. Following the lecture, Pete will lead a field study to Woven Roots Farm in Tyringham, MA, and will explain season-extension structures and the various growing techniques.

Peter Salinetti owns Woven Roots Farm, a small family farm and CSA that grows vegetables and culinary herbs using traditional farming practices. For over 10 years they have grown local produce for Berkshire County families. Their vegetables are grown using environmentally sustainable gardening practices, and they produce amazing top-quality, delicious produce. Both Peter and his wife Jen are committed to raising awareness about the importance of the local food supply, along with teaching technical information on how to do so. They have lectured on growing food for both NOFA and other regional organizations.

September 21 Extending the Harvest

Extending the Season’s Harvest: Growing Vegetables for Four Seasons (H) @ Education Center at Berkshire Botanical Garden
Oct 22 @ 10:00 am – 4:00 pm

 

Learn how to extend the season’s harvest to enjoy your own garden greens throughout the late fall and early spring months. Consider growing under cover in an unheated greenhouse, cold frame, or high/low poly tunnels, and learn techniques needed to achieve a true four-season harvest. Investigate a variety of structures and learn the pros and cons of each. Crop selection, no-till soil preparation, timing, planting, cultivation, and harvesting will be covered, with a focus on early and late season production. Spend the afternoon at  Woven Roots Farm, Tyringham, MA, where Pete will lead an in-depth tour of the farm’s season-extension structures and will explain the various growing techniques.

Instructor – Peter Salinetti, B.S.

Oct
26
Thu
Rendering (H, D, NP) @ Education Center at Berkshire Botanical Garden
Oct 26 @ 5:30 pm – 8:30 pm

Rendering (H, D, NP)

This class meets on Thursdays, October 26 – December 21  (no class 11/23).

Rendering is a drawing skill necessary for communicating garden designs to clients. This course is the next step for gardening designers following drafting. Structured as a studio class, students will learn the softer side of drawing for design using the B range pencils. Practice illustrative rendering such as sections, elevations and plan obliques. This course will enable designers to better communicate their designs to clients. Non-professional gardeners and artists are encouraged to join this class.

Instructor – David Dew Bruner, A.S.L.A.

Oct
29
Sun
Chainsaw Skills Workshop (H) @ Education Center at Berkshire Botanical Garden
Oct 29 @ 8:30 am – 4:30 pm

Sunday, October 29, 8:30 am  – 4:30 pm

Are you interested in learning to use a chainsaw but feel intimidated to do so? This workshop is designed for the novice to beginner chainsaw operator who wishes to gain greater confidence with this powerful tool.  Topics will include personal protective equipment, anatomy of a chainsaw, reactive forces, basic chainsaw maintenance and additional tools for use with a chainsaw.  Techniques learned include holding and starting a saw, hazard ID, escape options, log analysis (binds), planning cuts, overall plan and bucking and limbing. Attendees will cut logs on the ground and/or elevated on saw horses.  Attendees will leave with a better understanding of the safety features of a chainsaw and be able to operate a chainsaw based on safety fundamentals. No experience is necessary. If you have your own equipment (chainsaw or personal protective equipment) please bring with you.  Note equipment will be provided.  Dress and prepare for weather including long sleeves, pants, and boots.  Bring a bagged lunch.

Instructor-Melissa LeVangie, Certified Arborist  (MCA, ISA, NH) CTSP

Cost: $225

Oct
31
Tue
Soil and Soil Amendments (required) @ Education Center at Berkshire Botanical Garden
Oct 31 @ 5:30 pm – 8:30 pm

Rhus aromatica Grow LoClasses meet on Tuesdays,  October 31 – November 21, from 5:30 – 8:30pm.

This course will explain how plant growth is affected by soils, from drainage to pH and nutrients. Learn how to evaluate soils, improve those that are less than ideal, and how to amend soils for specific garden uses. Fertilizers, soil amendments, making and using compost, moisture management and the pros and cons of mulching will be covered.  Students should bring a soil sample. 

Instructor – John Howell, M.S. is the former Extension Vegetable Specialist, for the University of Massachusetts and currently lectures on vegetables, fruits and soil management   Author of numerous newsletters for growers and is currently the editor for New England Vegetable Management Guide, published biennially by the University of Massachusetts.

Discounted price for 4 Fall Level I courses: $650

Nov
12
Sun
Rooted in Place: Ecological Gardening Symposium (H,D, NP) @ Offsite: Berkshire School, Sheffield, MA
Nov 12 @ 9:00 am – 4:00 pm

This  all day program will focus on managing the landscape sustainably.   BBG is bringing together James Hitchmouth,  professor of landscape design at the University of Sheffield, UK, author of Sowing Beauty, Designing Flowering Meadows from Seed, horticulturist Jessica Walliser, author of Attracting Beneficial Bugs to the Garden: A Natural Approach to Pest Control, mycologist Trad Cotter and organic landcare specialist Michael Nadeau.  This event will give attendees a new, environmentally sensitive, vision for approaching the connection between their home and the surrounding landscape.

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