Member Education (NGC Schools)

Are you interested in sponsoring or attending a school?  Go to the "Schools" tab below for details.
CGCI offers gardening related courses developed by National Garden Clubs, Inc. The curriculum for these courses has been tested around the country and perfected & refined to impart the most important information in the least amount of time.  The courses are open to anyone.  For information on schools currently scheduled in California go to the CGCI Calendar and click on the NGC Schools tab
As an accredited consultant you are encouraged to join the California Consultants Council and flower show judges may join a local Judges Council.

Environmental School

CGCI Co-Chairman:  Michael Biedenbender, & Leticia Biedenbender,
  • A series of four (4) Courses, eleven hours each.
  • Each course is divided into learning units designed to be interesting, informative and to outline positive actions we can all pursue to be good stewards of The Living Earth.
  • Courses are open to all interested people who may attend any or all of them for personal growth.
  • Objective is to further the awareness and understanding of the environment and to promote environmental literacy, through outreach programs, for citizens of every age.
  • Only NGC members may take the exam (open book) for credit toward the nationally accredited designation, NGC Environmental Consultant.
  • For additional information go to NGC Schools
  • Learn more...

Flower Show

CGCI Chairman:  Gudron Kimmel -
  • A series of four intensive courses (approx. two days each in length) that cover the principles of horticulture and floral design.
    • Horticulture Curriculum:  The horticulture curriculum consists of basic general information on proper gardening techniques from seed / plant selection to plant culture and control of problems. Information is also presented on cultural needs of specific perennials, annuals, trees and shrubs, as well as fruits, vegetables and nuts and how to grow superior container plants.
    • Design Instruction:  Design instruction covers traditional floral arrangements through contemporary styles and even designs incorporating lights and motors. Many attendees are particularly interested in table setting designs showing coordination of floral centerpiece, linens and dishes. Vignettes, small segments of rooms, also give ideas on interior decorating.  For examples of Floral Design see - Floral Designs by Palomar Designers or Floral Designs by Furyu Designers
  • After successful completion of the four courses and after  passing the reading exam, a member may become an accredited judge.
  • For additional information go to NGC Schools
  • Learn more...(plus Flower Shows - what are they and why do we have them?)

Gardening School

CGCI Chairman:  Greg Pokorski -
  • A series of 4 courses may be sponsored by a member club, a group of member clubs, a district or CGCI.
  • After successful completion of four courses a member may become an accredited gardening consultant.
  • Objectives are to stimulate an interest in horticulture and to further the art of gardening.
  • Check the CGCI Calendar for Schools and Refreshers
  • For additional information go to NGC Schools
  • NGC Gardening Consultant Council Newsletter
  • Learn more...

Landscape Design

CGCI Chairman:  Alexis Slafer -
  • A series of four (4) Landscape Design Study Courses with a Landscape Design Critics card issued upon successful completion of the series.
  • Objectives are to promote awareness and understanding of the principles and theories of landscape design, site planning and landscaping, as well as the ordinances, zoning restrictions and codes developed by government agencies for good land use development.
  • The public is welcome at any or all of the courses.
  • "Newscape" -  a bi-annual publication of National Garden Clubs, Inc. Landscape Design Schools & Councils. The publication communicates objectives of the Landscape Design Study Program along with relevant information from School Charimen, region and state reports and stories about related subjects such as pollinators and winter drought.
  • Check the CGCI Calendar for Schools and Refreshers
  • For additional information go to NGC Schools


For Schools currently scheduled go to the CGCI Official Calendar
Groups wishing to sponsor one of the four NGC schools may apply to the Educational Schools Finance Chairman for a grant. 
Submit with proposed budget for the course to the Chairman listed on the form
Grants are available for all courses of a school.
Each course requires a separate application and proposed budget.
After assessment and processing the Treasurer will mail a check to the applicant.
A financial report must be submitted after the event.
If the event is profitable, repayment or partial repayment, of the grant is appreciated.  Grants for ensuing courses of the shool will not be considered until the financial statement from the previous course has been received by the Educational Schools Finance Chairman with copies to the President, Financial Secretary and appropriate CGCI School Chairman.