Gardening and Garden Design Classes

Learn basic gardening skills, brush up rusty skills, or learn something new. Learn to design your home landscape and care for it.  Look for unique workshops, multiple-session classes, and inspiring lectures.

Use the class title to navigate to a detailed description or search for classes in our Active Network registration site.  Online registration can be accessed through either link.

Class Schedule
December 2018 – April 2019

Soils Series

Soils, Part 1: Properties of Soils and Life in the Soil | January 19

Instructor Karin Stretchko discusses the physical properties of soil, and explains that soil is far from inert, hosting a myriad of chemical and life processes.

Soils, Part 2: Organic Matter and Sustainable Gardening | February 16

Instructor Karin Stretchko discusses organic matter in soil, including the process of decay, factors that affect organic matter content, managing it, and amendments to the soil.

Soils, Part 3: pH and Fertilization | March 16

Instructor Karin Stretchko discusses soil pH and the many factors affecting it within soil chemistry, plant nutrition, and the nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium cycles, including how to read fertilizer labels.

Basic Residential Landscape Design | January 19, 26, February 2, 9, studios January 27, February 3

This comprehensive course enables you to thoughtfully and responsibly create a landscape enhancing the architecture of your home and reflecting your personality. Learn the basics of site and structure then proceed with analyzing climate and setting.

Indoor Plants | February 2

Are you a plant lover without a garden, dread winter’s lack of green, and jealous of those perfectly-manicured interiors on Instagram wondering where they get those amazing indoor plants?Join Elise Benhase to discuss different types of houseplants, how to keep them alive, and how to find a place for them in your home.

Beekeeping for Beginners and Advanced Beginners | February 16, March 2, 16

Learn best management practices and techniques to help keep honey bees healthy and productive in urban areas, suburban and rural settings using all-natural, bee-friendly methods.  Participants learn about the many aspects of beekeeping, observe a bee hive up close, learn how to install and care for honey bees and get complete instruction about setting up their own apiary (bee yard).  Instructor: Jesse the Beekeeper

Boxwood Care | February 23

Learn best management care for your boxwood from planting, pruning, rejuvenating older plants, to scouting for pests and current information on Box Blight.  Instructor: Laurie McMinn

Organic Vegetable Gardening | February 23

Learn the basics of gardening the earth-friendly way! Organic gardener Heather Veneziano discusses how to ‘go green’ with your garden, including soil amendments, plant maintenance and pest control.

Roses 101 | March 2

Join Rose Garden Horticulturist, Laurie McMinn, for this introduction to rose gardening. Learn best practices for pruning and spend time in the Rose Garden for hands-on demonstrations.

Digging In: Tips and Best Practices | March 21, 28, April 4

Instructor Beth Burrell helps you take your home landscape to new places in this class. Step-by-step advice on plants best suited for the Richmond area, site preparation, proper planting techniques, and the finishing touches are discussed.

Beekeeping Refresher for New Beekeepers | March 23

If you are new to beekeeping and struggling just a bit, this class is for you! Discuss what new beekeepers do right, what they don’t do correctly and help with suggestions to get you going again in the spring. Class participants actively share their experiences to learn from each other, while Jesse The Beekeeper guides discussions and provides time-tested tips, strategies and proven techniques to help you succeed in 2019.

Planning and Designing a Cutting Garden | March 23

With many people concerned about the carbon footprint of commercially produced flowers or simply trying to save money, there is growing interest in cutting gardens. Lewis Ginter horticulturist Laurie McMinn discusses how to plan and design a cutting garden that is attractive, colorful, fragrant, and useful!

The Beginner’s Perennial Garden | April 18

This workshop introduces you to hardy perennials, simple starter plans, and the basics of soil preparation. Instructor Beth Burrell (The Giving Tree) shares her years of experience as a landscape designer—including how to create a garden on a site with bad soil!

Plants for Pollinators: Spring | April 27

Learn how to support honey bees and other important pollinators in your own yard through companion planting and pesticide-free practices. Elise Benhase looks at plants providing support to pollinators from spring to summer.

Spring Container Workshop | April 27

Garden horticulturist Dean Dietrich, responsible for the many spectacular container plantings in the Central Garden, shows you how to plan your container garden, from soil mixes and planting techniques to design tips and succession planting for seasonal color,then create your own container garden under Dean’s guidance.


The Spring/Summer 2019 season of classes will publish on April 3, 2019.

Active Network Registration Account

Create an account or sign in to register, view current registrations, payments & course history

Create/Manage my Account

Explore our Gardening and Garden Design Certificate Program

Learn More