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2012 People’s Garden Fall Webinar Series: Ingredients for a Healthy Garden

Posted by Annie Ceccarini, Outreach and Education Specialist, USDA People’s Garden Initiative in Initiatives
Nov 19, 2012

The feedback about last year’s webinar series was overwhelmingly positive! That’s why USDA’s People's Garden Initiative is bringing it back.

We’re asked all the time for a specific recipe for starting and sustaining a People’s Garden. And each of this year’s webinars focus on ingredients that can be mixed into any garden project to make it healthier: processing and storing seeds, engaging volunteers, growing native plants, composting, and school garden best practices.

The series of five hour-long trainings will broadcast live on Thurs. Nov. 29, Dec. 6 and Dec. 13 and Wed. Dec. 5 and Dec. 12 from 12 noon to 1 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time. They are free for anyone to watch live online. Register at to participate.

You can ask the instructor questions during each LIVE webinar on Twitter using hashtag #AskPGI to @PeoplesGarden. We will ask as many questions as time permits towards the end of each session.

Each webinar will be recorded, closed captioned and posted for anytime viewing. Once this is complete, webinars will be available on the People’s Garden website under ‘Gardening Resources’.

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2012 Fall Webinar Series

Thursday, November 29
Webinar: Seed Saving: Processing and Storage
with Shannon Camody, public programs manager for Seed Savers Exchange

Last year Shannon introduced us to seed saving with this webinar. Now she’s back to build on that foundation and teach us ways to process and store seeds. Learn how to ferment, clean, thresh, winnow, and dry seed after harvesting, and how screens, tarps, fans, and other commonly available items can be used during the process.

Wednesday, December 5
Webinar: Engaging Volunteers in the Garden
with Lori Jean Mantooth, director of training programs with Points of Light

Volunteers can be your greatest assets as they increase your capacity to grow, maintain and make a garden sustainable. This session will explore best practices for volunteer engagement including how to identify meaningful service opportunities and recruit volunteers with diverse skills and interests.

Thursday, December 6
Webinar: Going Native
with Thomas D. Landis, retired national nursery specialist with USDA Forest Service and Cori Rotter, manager of beautification and community greening with Keep America Beautiful

Growing native plants can be fun, challenging, and rewarding. Obtain practical information on the growing and planting of North American (Canada, US, and Mexico) native plants for restoration, conservation and landscaping. Hear how Keep America Beautiful, its affiliates and its partners mobilized Americans this fall to plant native species in support of National Planting Day.

Wednesday, December 12
Webinar: Composting & Compost Use – How, Why and Where
with Cary Oshins, director of education and outreach with US Composting Council and Al Rattie, director of market development with US Composting Council

Wanna make your own compost? You can produce high quality compost on a small-scale, but it’s important to use quality control standards from start to finish. Learn how you can get started, what to do with what you produce, and the many benefits and uses of compost.

Thursday, December 13
Webinar: Best Practices in Starting and Sustaining a School Garden
with Liz Falk, professional development educator with Cornell Garden-Based Learning, Department of Horticulture

We know that garden-based learning increases a child’s likelihood to eat fresh vegetables, can increase a child’s attention span, and foster positive relationships across ages. Learn best practices on how to incorporate gardens into schools, to make garden projects successful and sustainable, and to encourage participation from others in your community.

Category/Topic: Initiatives