Many New Jersey homeowners wish to keep their yard maintained in a way that doesn’t harm the environment or pose a risk to their family’s health. Rutgers Cooperative Extension Introduction to Organic Land Care Course is a four-day course for landscapers and property managers. The course will be held every Thursday in February (6, 13, 20 and 27) in Bridgewater, New Jersey.
More than 15 Extension professionals and industry experts help teach the course, which focuses on organic practices for promoting healthy soil, enhancing biodiversity, and reducing polluted runoff from managed landscapes.
Practicing organic land care requires a different set of tools, mainly a new understanding of the landscape as a whole living system. Organic land care is not simply about the type of fertilizer or pesticide used on a landscape. Rather, it is a holistic approach that restores and enhances biological cycles involving soil microorganisms, plants and animals.
The Rutgers Organic Land Care (OLC) working group has developed the course that serves as a resource for homeowners and landscapers interested in incorporating these practices. Even Master Gardeners and non-professionals will benefit from attending the course.
For both professionals and homeowners, making the transition to OLC can be intimidating or overwhelming. While there are no federal standards for organic land care, this course helps educate and assist land care practitioners in determining what is acceptable under an organic program.
Upon completion of the course and exam, participants are awarded certificates. In addition, their names are entered are added to a “Find a Landscaper” database maintained by Rutgers and which lists, by county, the practitioners who have completed the requirements of the Organic Land Care course. Learn more or register for the course.