1. Will this work for where I live? Am I a cold climate gardener?
Does your gardening season seem too short? Are your summer nights chilly? Do you have late spring or early fall frosts? The Keeping Food Real Cold Climate Gardening Online Course was developed in Fernie, British Columbia - a small Rocky Mountain town located at 1010ft. If you have a short growing season, or are growing in zones 4 and cooler - this course is designed for you. Click here to download a plant hardiness zone map. Most conventional gardening resources don't support gardeners in cooler climates. The challenges of growing food in cooler climates needs special skills, resources and knowledge. This course is designed to do just that.
2. How long is the course?
The Cold Climate Gardening Course is 10 chapters. Each week we will send you two chapters of the course content. How long will it take to complete each chapter? Well, that depends on how much existing garden knowledge you currently have - if some of the content is a review, then you will roll through it quicker. If much of the content is new, then it may take you longer to complete the program. It also depends on how much effort you put into the activities included in each chapter. So really, the answer is - it all depends! We send you 2 learning chapters as soon as you register, that means it take a total of 8 weeks (aka 2 months) if you complete the learning each week you get it. Want all the content at once? We are working towards offering that option as well, although studies have shown that online students are more successful by completing smaller chunks rather then getting all the content at once.
3. Why should I take an online gardening course?
eLearning simply makes it more convenient to learn. Now you can schedule your learning around YOUR day rather, instead of the other way around. The course materials are always available, so it makes it easier for you to balance your work commitments, family responsibilities and learning goals. Online learning means you choose where and when you want to learn. Online learning also means you get to connect with an online community of other passionate cold climate gardeners. Our course is self-paced which means you can complete your learning targets on your schedule. Online learning makes it more convenient and cheaper for you to learn than traditional education, and you can now access all the cold climate gardening resources you need in one spot.
4. What if I'm just not a very tech-saavy person?
Don't worry. The online system is simple to use. To use this course, all you need is your online username and password - when you pay for your course, you will create this information. We recommend writing it down somewhere easy to locate, so it will be easy for you to find in the future. During the course you will have the opportunity to watch videos, and read key how-to gardening information on your computer, smart phone or tablet. You will need speakers and to be able to stream video. There are resources that you can print and download. If you need help, don't worry - we'll be there to help you figure it out.
5. What if I have never taken an online course before?
Online learning is the fastest growing segment of education. It's okay if you've never taken an online course before - this is a great place to start. We took the Keeping Food Real from workshop to online course to make it easier for you to access the information when and where YOU need it. It's hard to set aside a whole day on the weekend to take a gardening class. Now you can expand your gardening knowledge in the comfort of your own home when it works for you. Learning online is the way of the future and helps you find a community of other people who are interested in learning the same things you are.
6. How long do I get access to the course materials?
Once you purchase the course, you will have lifetime access to all the resources. You will also have the option to download and/or print the many Keeping Food Real course worksheets and resources if you would prefer a hardcopy to reference.
7. So what actually happens when I sign up?
Once you pay for your course registration you will gain instant access to the first 2 modules of the course. As part of the registration process, you will create a username and password to access the course. We will send you emails with everything you need to know to access your course. You can immediately start working on the first 2 modules if you want. After that, you receive weekly emails that give you access to subsequent modules. One module a week will be released till you complete the 10 module course.
8. I know nothing about gardening, is this the right place to start?
We all need to start somewhere. This course has been specifically designed for the beginner and intermediate gardeners and is the IDEAL spot to start building your gardening knowledge and skills. You are in the right place.
9. I've been gardening for a while, why should I take this class?
One of the amazing things about growing your own food is that you can continually learn and experiment to improve your skills. Do you feel like you could get a better harvest? Do you wish you had a resource where you can find the answers to gardening questions that pop up? Do you need a refresher? Do you question why your seeds or plants didn't grow to their full potential? Do you feel challenged by your short growing season? If so, this course is for you.
10. Will this help me with my fruit trees or flowers?
The Keeping Food Real course content is focused on growing vegetables. Although there are many fruit trees that grow well in cold climates, this course does not focus on this. Many of the concepts included in this course will increase your success when growing flowers, berries and fruit trees.
11. I'm not convinced that online learning is right for me, tell me more. How can an online course help me with a hands-on activity like gardening?
Online learning is pretty amazing. If you haven't tried it, you are missing out. Once you register you gain access to engaging, easy to use content that helps you create the thriving garden you've dreamed of. And the best part? You get to access it whenever and wherever is best for you. You get videos, ebooks, downloadable resources, fun hands-on activities, access to our online community of cold climate gardeners, our special garden daily news that scours the internet for related garden news and so much more.
12. I want to learn to garden, but I don't have a place to do it. Can I still learn?
Even if you don't have a backyard garden, there are still many ways you can grown your own food. Is there a community garden in your area? Do you have a patio or balcony? Do you have a sunny south facing window that gets 6+ hours of light? Do you have a place in your home where you could install lights? Are there elderly people in your neighbourhood that could use help caring for their garden? There is always a way to find growing space is you look at the problem creatively. Even if you have a couple pots of soil on your balcony, you can still benefit from the Keeping Food Real course.