MCC, in partnership with the Green Omaha Coalition, is happy to bring you Green Living
Workshops. Learn how to save money, improve your family's health and be good to the
environment. These workshops include current and practical information on topics such as
water, energy, transportation, stuff (solid waste and recycling), economics and yards.
For more information on any of the these courses and their availability, click
here and search under the topic Green Living/Sustainability. Remember that you can only search for the classes being held in the current quarters listed.
To register, call (402) 457-5231.
All Green Living Workshops
Low Maintenance Lawn Care
Take a step beyond Kentucky bluegrass in this class. Learn about the water-wise
turfs such as fescue, rye and newer bluegrass cultivars that will beautify your
lawn and stay green regardless of drought or rain. The instructor is Terry Haubold,
Director of Maintenance and Grounds at Millard Public Schools in Millard, Neb.
Course Number: HOMI-052N
Rid your home of toxic cleaners and replace them with eco-friendly cleaners that are
healthier for you and your family. In this class, students will learn to keep their
homes clean and green by making their own cleansers and discovering which cleaners
are the most effective for a spic and span home and the safest for people and the
planet. Learn about products that can disinfect, clear household drains, and reduce
or remove odor, mold, and stains. Also, receive ideas regarding options for green
dusting and vacuuming. (one session)
Would you like to learn how to get around Omaha without relying on a car? Omaha has
many great opportunities for multi-modal transportation, and it may be easier than
you think. Participants will learn the benefits and risks of biking, busing, walking,
and carpooling to get you around the Omaha metro area. Come and learn how to reduce
your gasoline demand, help the planet, and commute without an automobile. Join us as
Gerard Wellman teaches students to master public transportation throughout the Omaha
area. (one session)
Course Number: HOMI-039N
Practical Energy Savings Solutions: For Summer
This workshop will provide customers with a variety of no cost to low cost energy
efficient saving opportunities within their home for the summer. Presenter Garry
Ruliffson will have various visual displays and simple solutions to the most common
energy consuming aspects of the home. (one session)
In this class, local experts walk participants through the steps needed to build a
successful rain garden. Covered in the class are details about site location, site
development, and integration with other water collection components - rain barrels,
gutters, and drainage ditches. Learn to place native plants according to depth,
water tolerance, and color schemes. (one session)
Capture your rain water for garden use and reduce the amount of carbon footprint needed to treat wastewater. Not all down-spouts are alike nor do all homes have the same gutter and drain layout. Bring a diagram of your home exterior to use as a model in order to configure and design the right rain barrel for your garden project. There is a $40 lab fee (which is included in the registration fee), and you will take home a 55-gallon rain barrel ready for use.
Course Number: HOMI-183N
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
Have too much stuff? This Green Living course will give a brief overview of the
energy cycle. Find out why reduce is the first implementation in the process,
followed by reuse, then recycle. Covered in this course will be practical ideas
for reducing waste, repurposing materials, recycling and proper disposal of end use
products. Students in this class will learn creative ways to reuse things they have,
reduce what they consume, and recycle nearly any item using local resources in the
Omaha area. (one session)
Course Number: HOMI-076N
Based on the book Menu for the Future, this is an opportunity to meet and form an
interest group on ethical eating. Use the materials as a lens through which to view
the issues around food choice from individual, local, national and global perspectives.
The purpose of the introductory session is to provide a framework and an opportunity
to view the scope of the materials available and organize into a self-directed group.
The course builds awareness around the heightened issues regarding food choice and
freedom. (one session)
Course Number: HOMI-061N
Go beyond the usual succulents, ornamental grasses and Echinacea in this class for
the water-conscious gardener. Explore the wide variety of plants available for your
urban landscape. The instructor is Christine Kasel, MCC Horticulture Instructor.
Introduce yourself to trees indigenous to Nebraska and surrounding areas! This class
will teach you to identify and care for the low-maintenance, water-wise trees found
in our parks, neighborhoods, and yards. Join us and explore both ornamental and
shade-tolerant trees. This workshop is especially beneficial for newcomers to the
Omaha area or anyone else who has ever wondered about the benefits and horticultural
uses of native trees. The instructor is Bryan Kinghorn, of Kinghorn Gardens in Omaha.
Course Number: HOMI-050N
Become socially responsible, help the planet, and fatten your wallet all at the same
time. With increased global awareness of environmental concerns, investors are looking
to invest funds in eco-friendly businesses. Tyler Mainquist, a financial consultant
specializing in Socially Responsible Investing (SRI), will discuss the basics of this
$3 trillion investment sector, how SRI funds integrate social and environmental
objectives, the various screens used, shareholder advocacy, and community investing.
Course Number: HOMI-019N
*Your instructor in this class will be a teacher and facilitator. Your instructor
will help you gain knowledge in you quest to become an informed and possibly skilled
investor. However your instructor WILL NOT act as a financial or investment counselor
or advisor. While numerous investment techniques and philosophies will be discussed
and analyzed in the course, your instructor will not make specific investment
suggestions or offer investment advice to students. Nothing your instructor may say or
do should be interpreted as making an investment recommendation. Neither your
instructor nor the College are or will be responsible for any investment decisions you
may make during or after the completion of your attendance in the course. You assume a
ny and all risks regarding any investment decisions you may make.
Introduction to Green Living
Learn how to help others and yourself be more environmentally conscious through improved
well-being, cost cutting tips, creating a more peaceful living area, and finding a deeper
awareness of one's impact on the Earth. Students will learn to think about sustainability
by exploring eco-friendly structures and practices, being water-wise, choosing healthy
foods, and using technology, resources, and money wisely. (one session)
Course Number: HOMI-042N
Composting with Worms
This class will cover how to compost with red wiggler (Eisenia Foetida) worms using household
food waste as well as proper worm care. . Apartment dwellers as well as home owners can
utilize this process year-round. Vermicomposting is the process of having red wiggler worms
and other decomposer organisms process our organic waste and turn it into a great natural
fertilizer (called vermicompost or worm castings). Students will have a "hands-on" lab and
assemble a multi-level worm bin, repurposed from recyclables, comparable to commercially
available worm bins. Students wishing to keep their lab-assembled multi-level bin may do
so with a $20 (cash) payment for the kit before the end of the class. Worms not included.
Course Number: HOMI-017N
Home Energy: Insulate and Weatherize
Now is the time to think about saving dollars on your upcoming winter energy bill.
Several quick and easy steps can be taken to greatly reduce your heating expense. This
class is taught by OPPD Energy Solutions Specialist Garry Ruliffson. Learn how easy it
is to add insulation and stop air leaks in your home before cold weather gets here.
This workshop covers caulking, weather stripping and reducing cold air drafts in your
home, so you will be warm and cozy all winter long. (one session)
Course Number: HOMI-059N-01
Confidently Commuting by Bicycle
This 2 hour class is designed to cover the basics of commuting safely and confidently
by bicycle. Participants will learn the benefits of commuting, bike fit, basic roadside
repair, route finding, useful gear and equipment, rules of the road, and ways to avoid
common mistakes. (one session)
Course Number: HOMI-056N
Home Energy: Do Your Own Energy Audit
Have you wondered what energy upgrades you could do in your own home? Learn how to improve
comfort and health and save energy in your home. Learn how to conduct your own home energy
audit to identify energy saving opportunities in your home and what you can do to cut your
energy use and utility bill while improving comfort. This class is taught in partnership
with OPPD's Energy Information Center. (one session)
Course Number: HOMI-046N
Landscaping to Save Energy & Money
Plants can help you save money on utility bills. Learn to select the right trees, shrubs, and location for energy savings at your home or business. If you would like suggestions for your personal landscape, bring a sketch of your property including any permanent structures and all dimensions. Include the location of overhead power lines and the North facing direction of your home or business.
Course Number: HOMI-153N
All Urban Farming Workshops
Introduction to Urban Farming
A current study of urban agriculture providing perspective on the progress and development of this growing field. This course will highlight types of urban agriculture from around the world and in our country. We will explore the role plants play in urban sustainability and future urban environments.
Course Number: HOMI-035N
Introduction to Permaculture
This course covers the principles of permaculture, a sustainable design science and art that works with nature. These principles open the door to being able to design one's own life so as to experience the abundance that nature can provide, even in the midst of the city. Come and enjoy learning how to live in sync with nature.
Course Number: HOMI-047N
How Plants Work: Basic Botany
Every gardener knows that the better you understand your plants, the more you can help them grow. This class covers how plants grow from seed to fruit, including basic plant biology and what you can do to increase food production. This class is a perfect foundation to take your gardening to the next level.
Course Number: HOMI-168N
Season Extension Part I
It's almost never too early to start a spring garden. We will discuss the best plants for spring gardening and also the use of quick hoops and high tunnels. This is a hands-on class so bring your garden gloves as well as a paper and pen.
Course Number: HOMI-178N
Season Extension Part II
This is a continuation of the 'Fall Vegetable Gardening' workshop taught in August. Students will observe fall crops in the production garden and prepare winter hardy plants for life under cover. We will discuss season extenders including quick hoops and high tunnels. This is a hands on class so wear your gardening clothes.
Course Number: HOMI-042N
Building Healthy Soils I: How to Compost
Whether your goal is a backyard garden or urban farm, building and maintaining healthy soil will pay off in whatever you grow. Class exploration will include problems and solutions on how to compost as well as the benefits of compost to soil in nutrient release, soil structure and soil pH. It will cover aerobic, anaerobic, and worm composting systems to match the best type of system(s) for your lifestyle. Details include acceptable organics from lawn, garden, or household waste, providing proper moisture levels, and how to prevent odors in the various systems.
Course Number: HOMI-180N
Building Healthy Soils II: Using Compost and Soil Amendments
This course investigates the medium that everyone walks on, drives over, digs in, and grows things within. Soil is the key to any human endeavor on land. We will look at how to properly sample soils, interpret soil test results, determine what types of amendments to use, and investigate the methods and timing of amendment applications. Time permitting the class will also discuss the benefits of organic fertilizers. If you are interested in building soil health, this class is a must!
Course Number: HOMI-181N
Planning the Garden
Get a jump-start on your garden planning by creating a personal plan for your garden. Bring the dimensions of your garden and a list of vegetables you want to plant. In this class you will develop a planting plan, learn about crop rotation, and learn how to companion plant.
Course Number: HOMI-169N
Build your own indoor hot-house for starting seeds or start them on your window sill. This class will cover the basic needs of seed starting including: soil type, drainage, and proper watering.
Course Number: HOMI-170N
Container Vegetable Gardening
You don't need a huge lawn or acreage to grow great vegetables. If you have a rooftop, balcony, or patio, you can create a garden. This class explores the materials and plant selections most suited for container vegetable gardening.
Course Number: HOMI-053N
Home Garden Herbs
In this class, Tudy Fosmer, herbalist and president of the Herb Society, will share tips on herb growth and usage. Join us as Tudy shares her home-grown herbs and teaches students to recognize and enjoy the smells and tastes of these plants.
Course Number: HOMI-071N
Teaching Children the Garden
For adults wanting to teach gardening to children. Gardens offer a myriad of learning opportunities for children. This class will present play activities and nature exploration in the garden, geared to different age groups; cover basic information about nature and gardening; literature and internet resources; and curricula for use in teaching children about nature and gardening. Hands-on activities will include making insect collecting devices, birdfeeders, and plant experiments.
Course Number: HOMI-072N
Explore this gardening frontier. Learn how plants and fish work together in a beneficial relationship to provide a wonderful kitchen garden. This will challenge the way you think gardening should be. Learn system set-up, fish and plant selection, and maintenance.
Course Number: HOMI-068N
Growing Heirloom Winter Squash
Winter squash ushers in fall with its array of warm colors and rich, satisfying flavor. Highly versatile, it can be baked, stuffed, steamed, mashed or pureed. Not only is winter squash delicious, it is loaded with Vitamin A and is an excellent source of potassium, fiber, and complex carbohydrates. This course will cover the different types of squash and how to plant, nurture and manage, harvest, and cook this fall favorite.
Course Number: HOMI-585N
Early Spring Vegetable Gardening
Early Spring vegetable gardening of cold-hardy crops utilizing covered hoops and unheated tunnels. Class will include lecture and practical garden time. Get a jump on Spring.
Course Number: HOMI-171N
Fall Vegetable Gardening
August is the time to put in your second garden of the season. This class will focus on the use of short-season as well as cold-hardy plants for fall, including a variety of lettuces, greens and root crops. Additionally, we will discuss extending the growing season with quick-hoop mini greenhouses.
Course Number: HOMI-073N
Growing Organic Vegetables & Herbs
Learn about growing vegetables and herbs without the use of pesticides. Topics include seed selection, soil management, companion planting and prevention of diseases and insects. Bring your garden measurements to class and let us help plan your healthy summer vegetable garden.
Course Number: HOMI-057N
Organic Pest, Disease & Weed Management
Learn the benefits of keeping our multi-legged friends around. Discussion includes product use, applications and plant selection. Also learn types of insect and disease control: barriers, mulching and watering techniques. If you are planning on a vegetable garden for summer, this class is essential for success.
Course Number: HOMI-058N
Learn about tomatoes, from eating to pruning, fertilizer to mulch, and heirloom to hybrids.
Course Number: HOMI-074N
Fruit Tree Pruning
Now is the time to learn about proper dormant pruning techniques for fruit trees. This hands-on seminar is just in time for pruning most fruit trees in the home garden. The instructors are Harlan Hamernik, Wild Plums Nursery in Clarkson, Neb., and Ed Rasmussen, The Fragrant Path in Fort Calhoun, Neb
Course Number: HOMI-049N
Home Mushroom Cultivation
This workshop introduces you to outdoor mushroom cultivation that can be done at home. The focus will be on production of Shiitake and Oyster mushrooms grown on hardwood logs.
Course Number: HOMI-055N
Aronia Berry Cultivation
Aronia is a sustainable, easy to grow, handsome shrub with fruit that rates higher in antioxidants than broccoli, blueberries or cranberries. Aronia is perfect for the urban landscape and provides a value-added crop for row farmers and acreage owners. Whether you plant three in your lawn or three acres for an alternative cash crop, this native North American shrub is for you. The instructor is Harlan Hamernik, Wild Plums Nursery in Clarkson, Neb.
Course Number: HOMI-048N
Chickens enhance the suburban garden by creating a layer of fertile topsoil on chemical laden clay soil. Chickens restore balance and harmony, need very little work, and offer payback in tillage, fertilizer, insect and weed control, and fresh eggs. In this two hour session, learn the A to Z process referred to nationally as chicken tractoring and leave with a personalized plan for the suburban backyard.
Course Number: HOMI-043N
Food Preservation Seminar
This two-day hands-on seminar covers canning, freezing, and drying of fresh vegetables and fruits of the season. Learn about stocking your shelves and freezer for the winter with the produce you have raised this summer. If you have a garden full of fresh produce and are wondering what to do with it, this class is for you.
Course Number: HOMI-069N