Interlochen Center for the Arts to Offer Free Public Gardening and Ecology Workshops

From June to October, sustainability staff at Interlochen Center for the Arts will lead monthly programs in composting, seed saving, native flora and fauna, and more.

The community is invited to join Interlochen staff for five 90-minute sessions on gardening and local ecology. Hosted in the R.B. Annis Botanical Laboratory, the programs will introduce participants to topics such as native flora and fauna, composting and herb gardening. All sessions are free and open to the public.

“Interlochen has made a commitment to embrace sustainability,” says Emily Umbarger, sustainability coordinator and instructor of agricultural sciences at Interlochen Center for the Arts. “We hope to bring our community together in a meaningful way to explore various topics of sustainability that can be used at home or on campus. We are also excited to partner with Oryana this year to bring our attendees local, healthy, organic snacks.”

In May, Interlochen Arts Academy was recognized as a U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon School. The award recognizes schools, districts and Institutions of Higher Education that reduce environmental impact and cost, improve the health and wellness of their students and staff and provide effective environmental and sustainability education. The academy was the only institution in the state of Michigan to receive the designation this year. 

Registration for these programs is not required.

JUNE 26 – GARDENING 101 

Are you interested in learning how to garden? Have you ever wondered which would be the very best vegetables to try to grow successfully in Northern Michigan? Participants will learn about soil preparation, sun conditions and plant needs, and walk away with a host of resources to help start your very own successful garden. 

JULY 24 – AQUATIC NATIVE COMMUNITIES AT GREEN LAKE & DUCK LAKE

Are you familiar with the native aquatic flora and fauna surrounding Green and Duck Lakes? Are you able to identify which species are invasive? Are you curious about how we can help support and preserve the local aquatic communities of our area? Join an aquatic biologist and explore the native communities of Green and Duck Lakes.

AUG. 14 – COMPOSTING SUCCESSFULLY AT HOME 

Do you really want to compost at home, but you’re not quite sure how? Learn the basic science behind backyard composting and get all the tips and tricks you need to get started.

SEPT. 18 – SEED SAVING

Have you ever wanted to save seeds from your garden to plant next year? Got a favorite tomato variety that’s been passed down to you? Whatever your skill level, you are welcome to come and learn more about the amazing world of plant genetics, and how to use that information to grow flowers and vegetables in your home garden. Please bring seeds to share!

OCT. 16 – HERB GARDENING FOR WINTER 

Do you love the smell of fresh herbs in your favorite dishes? Are you interested in learning about container gardening? Want to keep your green thumb alive while the snow is flying outside? Come learn about potted herbs and indoor seasonal growing. Participants will leave with several plant starts.

What: Gardening and ecology classes 
Where: R.B. Annis Botanical Laboratory, Interlochen Center for the Arts
When: June 26, July 24, August 14, September 18, October 16. All sessions begin at 6 p.m.