Houston Botanic Garden’s Land Care Institute is the first of its kind in our city. The program encourages the embrace of landscaping as a functional and holistic benefit to people and the planet, not just a purely aesthetic endeavor. In this approach, landscape management takes place before, during, and after installation, in a manner that promotes and sustains the immediate and surrounding environment.
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Tuesdays and Thursdays
Local land care experts and regional professionals serve as instructors in this online course. Experienced green industry practitioners pair up with knowledgeable professionals from environmental organizations, such as OHBA, San Jacinto Environmental Supply, University of Texas at Austin, Memorial Park Conservancy and Houston Botanic Garden to share cutting edge sustainable landcare methods and techniques. The well-balanced faculty provide a depth of knowledge on the topic while sharing regional examples and solutions. The course covers content such as soil ecology; site analysis and design; organic pest, weed and disease control; rainwater management; invasive plants and more.
While most of the learning will take place online, there is one full day of in-person experiences including class sessions, a panel discussion and a reception to allow participants an opportunity to meet with other landcare professionals as well as the class instructors.
The land that surrounds us — including the yards in front , behind, and to the side of our homes — is tied directly to our health and well-being. There is so much potential to bring back landscapes that resemble and mimic nature, which have been shown to have numerous physical and psychological benefits.
In bringing a land care program like this to Houston, the Garden hopes to educate, empower, and guide landscapers and homeowners toward a different way of interacting with their land, a way that values life and connects us all. Through education about regional native plants, soil biology, and ways to mitigate and manage rainwater and erosion, participants will be able to not only design beautiful landscapes, but also support landscape function by creating balanced, well-designed systems that reduce waste, save costs, mitigate challenges, and connect us to nature. The desired result is movement away from current landscaping trends that primarily promote mechanical and chemical approaches, relying on pesticides, herbicides, and fungicides that cause more harm than good.
The Garden’s Land Care Institute is a hybrid certification program encompassing more than 40 hours of detailed instruction and expert advice offering an in-depth look at what it means to landscape sustainably, presented as biannual training courses delivered primarily online, supplemented with round-table gatherings in-between. In coordination with Garden staff, local land care experts, experienced practitioners in the “green industry,” and professionals from environmental organizations, such as the Organic Horticulture Benefits Alliance (OHBA), will share cutting-edge sustainable land care methods and techniques. Using a balanced collection of instructors with varying backgrounds and local experience provides a depth of knowledge drawn from examples and solutions that reflect regional circumstances and considerations. The course covers soil ecology; site analysis and design; organic pest, weed and disease control; rainwater management; invasive plants; and more.
Upon completion of the program, participants will be featured in the Garden’s online directory of certified individuals and institutions.
To achieve and maintain accreditation from the Garden’s Land Care Institute, you must:
Business Tier | $150 per year (NOT included in the cost of the training)
This tier is designed for landscapers, lawn care professionals and business owners who want the full promotional support of Houston Botanic Garden Landcare Institute.
Advocate Tier | $75 per year (NOT included in the cost of the training)
This tier is a reduced rate for people who wish to maintain accreditation status but do not need marketing services, such as educators, municipal officers and non-profit employees. You will be listed on Houston Botanic Garden Landcare Institute’ website, but without contact information.