Backyard composting, T'ai Chi, food preservation and permaculture are just a few of the topics we explore in our Green and Healthy Living classes.

For more details about our programs, or to receive personalized class recommendations from our helpful staff, please feel free to contact us at edu@phipps.conservatory.org.

Backyard Composting | Nancy Martin

Wed., March 7 | 7 – 9 p.m.

$70 per person | $75 per couple
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Organic materials often considered waste — such as grass clippings, food scraps, autumn leaves and paper — can be turned into a rich soil conditioner with valuable plant nutrients through the natural process of decomposition. Learn about the importance of composting, and learn how to set up a compost pile, properly maintain it and use the finished product. You will receive a FreeGarden EARTH compost bin, an 82-gallon receptacle that is an ideal choice for urban and suburban areas. This workshop is hosted by the Pennsylvania Resources Council. To register, click the Register button or call 412/488-7490, ext. 226. Price includes one compost unit per registration. Questions? Call 412/488-7490, ext. 247.

Organic Lawn Care | Walter Jarosh

Tues., March 6 | 7 – 9 p.m.

$20 members | $25 nonmembers
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Lush lawns that are safe for children, pets and the environment begin with the creation of healthy soil, and spring is a great time to get started. Learn how to grow an organic lawn that is free of synthetic chemicals in accordance with Phipps’ Sustainable Landcare Accreditation standards. Also, discuss insect and weed control, and discover best practices for mowing, watering, fertilization and aeration.

Growing Culinary Mushrooms: Shiitake Logs | Matt Peters

Sat., April 7 | 11 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.

$25 members | $30 nonmembers | Material fee: $20
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Make your own shiitake logs and discuss other species and methods of cultivation in this hands-on workshop. Also, learn new skills from a mushroom forager and habitat aficionado. The material fee covers one take-home log.

Rain Barrel / Watershed Awareness Workshop | Nancy Martin

Wed., April 11 | 7 – 8:30 p.m.

$80 per person | $85 per couple
Phipps Garden Center in Mellon Park

Harvesting rainwater can save money, benefits water quality in our region and makes good sense for backyards and gardens. Learn why rain barrels are especially important in Allegheny County, how to install a rain barrel and how to best store and use rainwater. You will receive a FreeGarden RAIN 55-gallon rain barrel. Designed with the homeowner/gardener in mind, it is affordable, attractive, easy to move and easy to install. This workshop is hosted by the Pennsylvania Resources Council. To register, click Register or call 412/488-7490, ext. 247.