Part of the Master Gardener Short Course Series

Designed For
Professionals and hobbyist gardeners interested in learning sustainable practices at their own pace.
Always available
Online | Self-paced
4-6 hours
Ask us about Workforce Development Training. We can customize this program to fit your organization’s specific needs.

This series of short courses is excerpted from OSU’s Master Gardener online course, allowing you to study specific fundamentals of gardening. In Soils and Compost, you will learn about the impact of soil texture and composition on soil quality, pH levels, and soil nutrients. You will also explore fertilizer types and application techniques, as well as how to produce compost.

OSU’s Master Gardener Short Course Series includes:


Please note: Taking all self-paced courses will not allow you to receive a Certificate of Home Horticulture or become an OSU Master Gardener. These courses are entirely self-paced and are not taught by an instructor. Also note that you will have access to course materials for one year after your registration date.

  • To distinguish different soil textures and compositions, and explain how they impact soil quality
  • To list the macro-, secondary and micro-nutrients necessary for healthy plants
  • To describe the influence of pH on soil nutrients, as well as how pH can be modified by limes or sulfur
  • To describe the key characteristics of different types of processed and organic fertilizers
  • To calculate how much fertilizer they should apply, per unit area of lawn or garden
  • To explain the ways in which inappropriate gardening practices can negatively impact soils and plants
  • To describe how to construct a compost pile which will produce usable compost
  • Gail Langellotto

    Instructor Gail Langellotto

    Gail Langellotto works with the Oregon State University Master Gardener program, state and local agencies, nonprofits and other non-governmental organizations. She helps to develop a better research-based understanding of how to design and sustainably manage gardens and parks to maximize ecosystem services. Her OSU Extension Service and outreach efforts are focused on communicating research-backed management practices to home gardeners and commercial landscapers.


  • Signe Danler

    Signe Danler is a veteran Master Gardener and landscape designer with a Masters of Ag degree in Horticulture. With the OSU Extension Service Master Gardener Program, she uses her experience and training in gardening, urban forestry and ecological landscaping to communicate about and promote sustainable gardening and landscaping practices.