Urban Food Gardening

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This very popular course will introduce you to sustainable and organic food gardening.  

Enquire now


This popular course will introduce you to a range of topics in sustainable and organic food gardening.  
This course is ideal for people who love gardening and the outdoors, are considering a career in horticulture, would like to learn more about growing their own food successfully or who would like an introduction to aspects of working in the industry before choosing a specific course/study pathway.

No prior experience is necessary. The course will run from the Eltham Neighbourhood House Community Garden. 

About the tutor

Melissa Houselander is an avid gardener and qualified Horticulturist, passionate about growing nutrient-dense food using permaculture and regenerative gardening practices. Melissa tends her large vegetable patch and orchard, keeps chickens, ducks and bees, sharing her knowledge and experience as a Horticultural Educator and Garden Coordinator in local community gardens.


Course dates, hours and location

Dates: Wednesday 26 April - Wednesday 21 June (9 sessions)

Time: 10am-2pm

Location: Eltham Living & Learning centre, 739 Main Rd, Eltham


Funded: $80 enrolment fee
Concession: $50 enrolment fee
Fee-paying: $360

Government-subsidised fee
If you are a permanent Resident and/or Australian Citizen/New Zealand Citizen and not enrolled in mainstream secondary school you are eligible for a government subsidised fee.

Please note, you will need to provide a copy of your Medicare card for a government funded enrolment. 

Concession fee
This fee is available to:

  • Commonwealth Health Care Card holders, and their dependant children and dependant spouses
  • Pensioner Concession Card holders, and their dependant children and dependant spouses
  • Veteran's Gold Card holders (but not their dependants).
  • Please note: if under 17 years of age and disengaged from school, participants will need to obtain an official Transition from School Form for us to sight.
    There are no pre-requisites for this course.
    People with a disability are encouraged to apply.

If you are eligible, you will also need to present your concession card at one of our centres prior to the start of the course in order to be eligible for a concession fee.  

For non-eligible individuals, the full fee will apply.

Withdrawals and refunds

Refer to our Fees, charges and refunds policy for information about withdrawals and refunds in our government-subsidised courses.  

What to expect

Working as a team with fellow participants, you will gain a broad overview and practical, hands-on experience in topics such as:

  • soil types
  • no dig gardens
  • nutrients and fertilisers
  • composting and worm farms
  • vegetables and seasons
  • pests and disease

You will spend time outdoors (getting your hands dirty!) under the leadership of an experienced trainer and horticulturalist, along with time in the classroom. On completion of this course, participants will be equipped with an overview of horticulture with an emphasis on sustainable organic food production. Sustainable organic food production is a growing industry in Victoria and participants will become familiar with the Horticulture industry standards regarding OHS.

What to bring

It is essential that participants wear suitable clothing for working in an outdoor environment:

  • Sturdy workboots
  • A broad-brimmed hat

Please also bring:

  • a drink bottle
  • lunch
  • a snack/morning tea if desired
  • notepad and pen.

There is a small fridge where you can store your lunch for the day.


This is an entry-level course, so it is designed for participants with no prior knowledge or experience in horticulture. 
The course involves participating independently in practical, hands-on activities both in- and outdoors.

Learning pathways

The Adult Community & Further Education Board subsidises places in this course to support people to return to study, the workforce or volunteer work.

People completing this course may go on to certificate/qualification courses in areas such as horticulture or permaculture.

Enrol here

Applications for enrolment can be processed using our online system.

Enrol now

If the course you are interested in is not listed, it may be booked out or not yet open for enrolment. Please contact us using the 'Enquire now' button at the top of the page to find out about upcoming courses.

If you are a concession card holder you will need to present your concession card at one of our centres prior to the start of the course in order to be eligible for the concession fee.