2021 Dig In! Community Gardener Training Program Application

Dig In! helps community members gain the knowledge and skills necessary to plan, design, and build a thriving and sustainable community garden. Please fill out one application per person. If you have any questions about the program or this application please contact Carrie Vollentine at OSU Extension at Vollentine.1@osu.edu or 330-599-7736.

Apply Here

Applications are due by 5 pm on March 17, 2021

Notice of acceptance into the program will be sent by March 23, 2021

Cost of the program is $50.00.

Dig in 2021 Class Schedule

Classes take place Tuesday evenings from 6pm to 8pm ONLINE via Zoom.

*Requirement for New Garden Leaders as part of Summer Sprout Program

Class 1 (April 20): Let’s Dig In!*

In this class, we will discuss site selection and development. Vacant land is abundant, but not all of it is created equal! In this class, we will discuss criteria for selecting a site that suits both plants and people. Also, learn how to create a layout for your garden that takes water access, sun, amount of space, and your garden’s mission into account.

Class 2 (April 27): Soil Basics for Garden Success*

Urban soils are full of challenges.  In this session, we’ll learn about soil basics, why and how to test your soil, and ways to prepare your soil for the planting season.  We’ll also cover techniques to help you improve soil health over time including mulching, cover crops, and green manures, and composting.

Class 3 (May 4): Asset Mapping, Grant Seeking, and Grant Writing*

From shovels to neighborhood support, we will map out the garden’s needs.  We will explore the many layers of community, from individual skill-sets and talents to grant-making institutions.  Learn how to identify and connect your garden’s needs to these multiple sources of support while developing basic grant writing skills.

Class 4 (May 11): Growing Goodwill: Fostering Good Relationships *

Community gardens are as much about relationships as they are gardening.  How decisions are made among members is important and can be critical to the longevity of a garden.  Learn how to build consensus among members, identify individual’s talents, delegate responsibilities, and be a good neighbor.  By building a strong foundation, you’ll be ready to face any challenges that may arise! 

Class 5 (May 18) Garden Design and Planning Lab*

Bring all your potential sites, garden sketches, ideas for collaboration.  We will work on designing and planning your garden, outlining garden processes and rules, or thinking through neighborhood outreach strategies. No grant applications worked on at this time.

Class 6 (May 25): Gardening Basics

This class will give you all the gardening knowledge you need to get through your first growing season! From seed to harvest. Topics will include the Ohio growing season, warm vs. cold season crops, reading a seed pack and seed catalog.

Class 7 (June 1): Garden Planning and Crop Selection

Learn about techniques such as use of space, succession planting and frost protection that will get your garden growing by March and continuing through November. This is the class where we will discuss season extension.

Class 8 (June 8): Reducing Pests and Disease in the Vegetable Garden

A community garden can be an oasis of biodiversity.  This session will introduce you to Integrated Pest Management (IPM), a way of keeping unwanted pests at a minimum without jeopardizing the health of you or your garden.  Learn how to identify good bugs vs. bad bugs, spot diseases, and use chemicals only as a last resort.  Other topics related to low-impact gardening will be covered.

Class 9 (June 15): Garden Portfolio Presentations and Celebration

Class participants will have an opportunity to share their garden projects as they have developed throughout the Dig In! program. This is a great chance for participants to get feedback and share challenges and lessons learned.