Smart Vegetable Gardening 101: An introductory online course for vegetable gardeners

Register for Veggies 101 where you will learn how to incorporate smart gardening practices of site selection, soil preparation, vegetable selection, composting and many others.

Photo credit: R Noblich,
Photo credit: R Noblich,

If you are interested in learning how to grow your own vegetables, then the Smart Vegetable Gardening 101 Webinar Series is for you. This is the second year this online course has been offered, and 90 percent of last year’s survey respondents reported they planted and enjoyed the produce from a vegetable garden. The 2014 participants also reported continued use of a number of smart gardening practices. Participants made use of soil test recommendations, organic mulches, compost and crop rotation.

If you’d like to learn how to incorporate smart gardening in your vegetable gardening, plan to sign up for the Smart Vegetable Gardening 101 online course. Participants will be introduced to all aspects of vegetable gardening, including how to get started, planning and preparation, plant and seed selection, types of gardening, maintaining the garden, soil preparation, starting and maintaining healthy plants and various gardening activities. The importance of smart soils will be highlighted: don’t guess, soil test to see what nutrients are or are not available in your soil, and the practice of composting will be highlighted as a means to build organic matter within a soil.

By participating in this webinar, participants will be able to connect with two Michigan State University Extension consumer horticulture educators, Hal Hudson and Rebecca Krans. Attendees will also be able to ask questions via chat pods. It’s suggested that participants plan to attend each session to get the most out of this online experience, but if you are not able to attend any one of the sessions, all registrants will receive recordings to view on their own time. Discussion, along with question and answer time, will be allotted as well.

Learn how you can contribute to the smart gardening principles of healthy soils, healthy plants and healthy lawns while you aim to grow good produce by using more earth friendly techniques. These earth friendly techniques will be highlighted during this series, for example, sustainable practices of soil conservation with cover crops, use of mulches and organic practices.

You can access this webinar series from the comfort of your own home or office computer. You do want to be sure you have high-speed Internet and have adobe connect downloaded on your computer. Log on to test your connection.

The class will run for six weeks starting Monday, Feb. 23 and run consecutively each Monday through March 30. Each nightly session runs from 6-7 p.m. EST. The cost of the class is $30 if you register by Feb. 20. After that, the registration fee is $40. Interested participants can register online. Once you’re registered, you will receive a link to the class via your email. All resource materials presented during the sessions will be available for downloading. You can also purchase an optional resource CD for $37 that will have additional educational materials relating to vegetable gardening.

For more information on a wide variety of smart gardening topics, visit the Gardening in Michigan website at or contact MSU’s toll-free garden hotline at 1-888-678-3464. You can also visit us at the Novi Cottage and Lakefront Living Show Feb. 26-March 1 in Novi, Michigan; the West Michigan Home and Garden Show March 5-8 in Grand Rapids, Michigan; the Lansing Home and Garden Show March 19-22 in Lansing, Michigan; and the Garden Extravaganza Gardening Conference April 11 in Marquette, Michigan.

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