Whether you are a gardener, homeowner, naturalist, landscaper or landscape architect, or just a curious learner, we invite you to choose from among the 12 to 16 different short courses offered each year (current offerings listed below).
The requirements for achieving the Certificate are met once you accumulate 100 credits ( one contact hour equals one credit). We do not have time limits to pursue the requirements but estimate that taking courses leisurely at a pace of one course every other month it would take 18 to 24 months to achieve.
Botany for Gardeners and Naturalists is the only required course, and the common basic foundation from which everyone pursuing the Certificate must begin. Those wishing to take courses a la carte (not pursuing the Certificate) are highly encouraged to take Botany, as well. Dr. Larry Mellichamp, Director Emeritus of the UNC Charlotte Botanical Gardens and founder of the Certificate program, offers a very unique and talented way of condensing the basic principles of botany in only 10 hours, while stimulating even those with former botany training. After that course, participants are free to “design” their own Certificate by choosing courses and/or workshops that will fit their schedules, lifestyles, and gardening interests.
We are tremendously pleased and proud of the continued interest this program garners not only from the public but from other botanic gardens and universities in the Southeast, which now have instituted similar programs. Thank you for your interest and participation in our Certificate in Native Plant Studies!
Currently Enrolling Classes, 2017
Rain Gardens only 6 seats available!
Instructor: Rich Mogensen, PWS
Saturday, May 6, 2016 (9:00am-4pm; ½ hour lunch break)
In this one-day course, wetland scientist Rich Mogensen will cover the basic why, what, and how of rain gardens as solutions to urban and suburban run-off challenges. While rain gardens are often used in commercial landscapes, they can have homeowner-scale applications, as well. This course will give a clear overview of the siting, design, construction, and maintenance of residential rain gardens, as well as how to assess if your landscape would benefit from one. The class will visit several rain gardens on the UNCC campus and learn about proper selection and installation of native plants for these unique gardens.
The book Wetland Restoration and Construction by Thomas Biebighauser is a recommended reading prior to class.
Location: McMillan Greenhouse classroom and UNC Charlotte campus
Certificate in Native Plant Studies credit hours: 7
Pending approval by NCBLA for C.E.
The Magical World of Mosses – only 3 seats available!
Saturday, June 10, 2017, (9:00am – 4:00pm; 1/2 hour lunch break)
Instructor: Annie Martin aka Mossin’ Annie
Explore the fascinating world of America’s native mosses and discover how these 450 million year old eco-friendly plants make great horticultural choices for today’s gardeners. Learn about the world’s oldest “native” plants – bryophytes! Additional topics will include responsible land stewardship, protection of our national/state/local forests and parks as well as the complex issues of illegal moss harvesting. Participants will begin their own herbarium collection of moss species. To culminate the workshop, elements of good moss garden design will be discussed as each participant creates their own moss dish garden to take home.
Saturday July 15, 9am-2:30pm
Instructor: Jeff Gilman, PhD
If you love growing your garden plants, at some point that feeling evolves into wanting to MAKE more of them – whether for your own garden or to share with others. This lecture & hands-on class will get you off to a good start, covering basic propagation by seeds and cuttings. We will look at five essential T’s: techniques, types of plant, timing, tools and temperament, as well as learning how to select healthy seeds and cuttings and how to treat them to ensure maximum likelihood of success. We will also do a short demo of grafting, explaining the principles behind this technique. Participants will go home with a few seeds and cuttings of native plants, as well.
Prerequisite: Botany for Gardeners
Location: McMillan Greenhouse Classroom, UNC Charlotte Botanical Gardens
Certificate in Native Plant Studies credit hours: 5
Pending approval by NCBLA for C.E.
Enrollment is not yet open for the following courses.
This list is for your planning purposes; additional courses will be added to the list.
Friday, September 8 (4pm-7pm) and Saturday September 9 (1pm-6pm)
Instructor: Jeff Gillman, PhD, Director of the Botanical Gardens
Native Grasses and Sedges for the Garden
Saturday September 23, 9am-1pm
Instructor: Paula Gross, MS, Assistant Director of the Botanical Gardens
Tree and Shrub Identification
Saturday, October 21 (9am-3:30pm; incl ½ lunch) and Sunday October 22 (1pm-5pm)
Instructor: Larry Mellichamp, PhD, Director Emeritus of the Botanical Gardens
Prerequisite: Botany for Gardeners
Certificate in Native Plant Studies Graduation and Lunch
Saturday, December 2 (11:30-1:30pm). All welcome
There are two ways to register* for courses, depending on how you wish to pay.
1. Online by charge. The entire registration and payment process is accomplished on our online store. Register and pay online here. You will receive an automatic confirmation of your payment (if not, please email Esther). You will also receive an email from Esther with class and parking details approximately 5 days prior to the start of class.
2. By check. These registrations will be processed in a first-emailed, first-served basis, first-paid-basis. Begin by emailing Esther (firstname.lastname@example.org) the classes you would like to register for. You will receive a response within three business days from your initial email. We ask for your patience during that time. Once you receive confirmation that there is space in the class, payment is expected within one week; otherwise the spot will be released and given to the next person in line. Given our very low class limits, we want to ensure that those who really want to take the class have the chance to. Thank you for your understanding. You will receive an email from Esther with class and parking details approximately 5 days prior to the start of class.
Paying by check?
1. Please write a separate check for each course you are paying for.
2. Date your check with the course’s STARTING DATE.
3. Checks must be made payable to “UNC Charlotte Botanical Gardens”
4. Please use the memo line to write in the name of the course.
5. Mail to Esther’s attention at the address below (you are also welcome to pay by cash or check at the greenhouse during normal operating hours)
McMillan Greenhouse | UNC Charlotte Botanical Gardens
9201 University City Blvd.
Charlotte, NC 28223
*Before you register, please read our cancellation and refund policies carefully.
Cancellation Policy: Cancellations must be submitted 21 days prior to the start date of the class for a full refund (only available if paid by credit card) or a full credit towards a future course (if paid by check). Otherwise, we will deduct a 25% cancellation fee. Cancellations made during the 72 hours prior to the starting date of the class will not receive credit. Credits do not have an expiration date.
Refund Process: We are able to issue refunds (per cancellation policies) only on payments made through our online storefront. Cancellations on courses paid by check receive credit towards future purchases according to the cancellation policy restrictions. However, if we must cancel a course due to low enrollment, we will shred (or return) any checks submitted for those courses as long as they have been dated with the start date of the course (this is why we ask for them to be dated as such).
Archive Classes (for your reference)
Botany for Gardeners and Naturalists
Saturday January 28, 2017 (9am-3:30pm; ½ hour lunch) and Sunday, January 29, 2017 (1:00pm – 5:00pm).
Instructor: Larry Mellichamp, PhD. Director Emeritus of UNC Charlotte Botanical Gardens.
Bird Sounds: Meanings and Purposes
Saturday March 4, 2017 (9am-3:30; incl ½ hour lunch) and Sunday March 5 (1-5pm)
Instructor: Jeff Thomas, PhD
Advanced Botany for Gardeners: What Do Plants Talk About?
Saturday, March 18, 2017 (9:00am-3:30pm; incl. ½ hour lunch) and Sunday, March 19, 2016 (1:00pm-5:00pm).
Instructor: Dr. Larry Mellichamp, PhD, Director Emeritus of UNC Charlotte Botanical Gardens
Rhododendrons and Azaleas
Monday, April 3 (9am-1pm)
Instructor: Larry Mellichamp, PhD, Director Emeritus of UNC Charlotte Botanical Gardens
Principles of Plant Identification with Wildflowers
Friday, April 7 (9am- 2:30pm; ½ lunch break)
Instructor: Paula Gross, MS, Assistant Director of UNC Charlotte Botanical Gardens