Hanson Nature Learning Center



Upcoming Events

Garden Creativity Camp

Garden Creativity Camp 7/5 8:00am

In this camp creativity reigns! The garden is our palette and provides our media - we will cook, craft, paint and explore many dimensions of our creative...

Great Green Adventure Camp

Great Green Adventure Camp 7/11 8:00am

In this camp we’ll focus on hands-on exploration of the outdoors and ways to connect to and protect the natural world. From day to day, campers will become...

Hunt Cabin Time Travelers

Hunt Cabin Time Travelers 7/18 8:00am

Live the past! History comes alive in this week long camp for children aged 6-12. Join us at the Hunt Cabin to learn the survival skills needed in the19th...

Making Scents of Insects

Making Scents of Insects 7/22 2:30pm

Take a close-up look at bees, butterflies, and more during a garden insect investigation. We’ll discover the amazing adaptations of insects, including how...

Super Senses Mini-Camp

Super Senses Mini-Camp 8/1 8:00am

What are the tools we use to investigate the world around us? Campers will discover that they contain all the tools they need to study their surroundings....

Recent Events

Recent Activity

Alexandra Cole

Alexandra Cole left a positive review 5/13/2016

This was such an interesting way of using plants. Allison and her assistant were very knowledgeable and helpful. I totally enjoyed the class. Alexandra

Patricia Neville

Patricia Neville left a positive review 4/22/2016

It was fun. I would have liked to have had more hands on, but understand that the possibility of spilling hot things and time constraints wouldn't allow it. Allison and Holly did a good job.

William B. West, Jr.

William B. West, Jr. left a positive review 4/22/2016

Lot's of fun. Instructors were knowledgeable and helpful. Granddaughter is really enjoying the products she made. Will sign up for others.

Teresa Chambers

Teresa Chambers left a positive review 2/12/2016

The instructors were well prepared, polite and professional. The materials were well organized. It was a fun afternoon.

Lori Morrey

Lori Morrey left a positive review 9/19/2015

I learned so much in this class. It was at the same time logical and poetic.
The handouts were organized and clear, easy to follow in the field while the instructor was talking. The stories made the information "absorbable", and there was A LOT of information. I wish I had a video of this class to watch again and again. And again.

Lori Morrey

Lori Morrey left a positive review 10/24/2015

This class was inspiring, energetic, packed with useful and fascinating information. The hands on group exercise in the Experimental Forest connected and reinforced what we had been taught in the classroom. The time evaporated and left me longing for more. I will take this class again if it is offered.

Lori Morrey

Lori Morrey left a negative review 11/14/2015

This was a wasted day. Not one single principle of sustainable landscaping was taught.

First we were given a giant sketch book and told to go outside, pick a spot, and draw it. We returned, sketches in hand. The instructor preached about why caring about the environment mattered, using Aldo Leopold as the inspiration (like none of us had ever read Leopold?), and showed the class a stupid movie about Africa. (?!!) I guess he meant to convince us to care about the environment. But why would you sign up for a sustainable landscaping class unless you cared about the environment? Du-uh? Then we had to go outside to draw again, this time with our "newly opened eyes"! Seriously.

We were shown slides of projects that Rick's company had done. We were given a landscape design project to draw, with huge maps, rolls of tracing paper, templates, special rulers, markers, pencils. A life lesson in sustainability, all these supplies and giant sketch books?

We were not taught anything about "right plant, right place". We did learn a bit about rainwater runoff mitigation, like how to build a created wetland. Rick spent a huge amount of time going on and on about his company's project in Cashier's, and had us try to create a design fulfilling all of his client's requirements, then showed us what his company had come up with. This was about hardscape, retaining walls, dog enclosures, driveways, decks, views. Then he showed us photo after photo of the rudbeckia and echinacea purpurea that had been used on this site, overwhelmingly unique information.

To me, principles would cover things like: what to plant if your site is dry, wet, sunny, shady, urban, woodland, big, small, level, steep, using plants that like to grow in the neighborhood and thus will not require a lot of water and maintenance once established. Do I want a place to look at from my deck, do my kids need a play space, do I need to transition from woodland to yard, do I need shade, do I want herbs/vegetables mixed in, do I need a screen from my neighbor or the street? He should have covered ways to mulch. He never mentioned leaves or composting. He should have suggested places to buy native plants. He should have stayed home.

You guys would do well to preview the classes before subjecting the unsuspecting student to them, or at least require an exhaustive outline for your review.

I went to this class eager to learn about a subject that is a passion, and was frustrated and bored all day long. The complete opposite of Patrick's classes. Please let me know when sustainable landscape principles will be taught by someone competent.

Betsy Russell

Betsy Russell left a positive review 11/14/2015

Rick is very knowledgeable and was quite thorough in his presentation. Got a LOT out of the day. Tgank you!

Kelly Jones

Kelly Jones left a positive review 10/9/2015

We had a great time. My two girls enjoyed themselves, as did I watching them create their own fairy house. Allison and Kendra did a great job helping and teaching the children.

Betsy Russell

Betsy Russell left a positive review 9/26/2015

This was a great class!

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