4 Ways to Fill Your Garden Classes

4 ways to fill your garden classes

Are you going to teach gardening this year? Once you find space for your classes and have them scheduled, it is time to fill them with eager students.

I find that 6-10 people is about right for a hands-on class. Any less you risk the awkwardness of teaching to one or two people when your students miss class. You may also find it more difficult to get engaging discussions going. Any more than 10 and it is difficult for everyone to participate.

10 people shouldn’t be difficult to find, right?

They say that people need to see things 3-7 times before they will commit to it. Try to find a few different ways to get it out there. Here are 4 ways to get the word out about your garden classes so you can fill them up.

1. Facebook Networking

I found that Facebook was my best marketing tool. You can target not only your own local friends, but any local group that might be interested.

First set up a page for your business to make it look more professional. This is free and only takes a few minutes. Invite people to like your page. Then use your page to create an event for your class. Be sure to make the event public so anyone can see it and share it. Invite your local friends by filtering them by their location. Share the event in different groups such as local gardening groups, or whichever local groups you belong to. Some groups have rules about self-promotion, but you can try to work it into the context of a thread.

2. Fliers

It is so easy to create nice-looking fliers using free aps like Canva. You can use one of their templates or upload your own photos. Print them out at home or at a copy shop. Hang up at garden centers, at the local coffee shop, library, or pass them out in your neighborhood.

3. Craigslist

The great thing about Craigslist is it is local. I had a lot of success listing my class in the Farm and Garden section. Be sure to include pictures of your garden, vegetables you’ve grown, or something else related.

4. Word of Mouth

Talk to people about your class. Share your enthusiasm for gardening and growing food. Ask people if they want to learn or if they know someone who does. Talk to friends, family, and strangers about your new class and how excited you are to teach it. Make announcements in groups that you belong to. This is a unique opportunity and you have to let people know about it because they might not be looking for it.

You don’t need to be a salesperson, just be yourself and people will be drawn to learn from you. Your enthusiasm will be contagious and people will want to help you find students.
After your first year, it will get easier to fill your classes. The success of your students will speak for itself and their friends will want to take your class.

Share Your Passion

Start advertising early so you can have time to get it in front of people multiple times. Keep sharing your event, your fliers, and talking to people. Make sure people know when the class is starting because it may be earlier than many people are starting to think about gardening.

Don’t be discouraged if people aren’t signing up right away. In my experience many people wait until the last minute to sign up. Stay positive and enthusiastic, and trust that the right students will find their way to your garden classroom!

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