Farmworker Fundamentals

Learn skills to be a productive agricultural worker in greenhouses and market garden farms. Taught by experienced organic farmers and horticulturalists, you’ll learn about greenhouse operations, planting and transplanting, fieldwork, harvesting and farmer’s market sales.

 This training is free for qualified applicants. Funding eligibility is reviewed as part of the application process.
Where: Port Alberni
Length: 8 weeks
Delivery: On-campus and Digital (Blended)

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Program Requirements

  • SSF-015 Market Garden Fieldwork & Safety
  • SSF-011 Greenhouse Fundamentals
  • SSF-014 Harvesting & Market Sales

Completion Requirements

Students must successfully complete each core course required within the program.

Admission Requirements

Prospective students should be able to lift up to 20 kilograms. General physical fitness and the ability to use hand tools for extended periods of time — such as garden hoes, weeding tools and shovels — are also requirements.

How to Apply

Complete the Continuing Education Application and Registration form. Forms can be dropped off or mailed to the Student Services office at your local campus. If you have questions, please call or email Leanne Moore 250 724-8705 or

Accessible Learning

Making education accessible for those with a documented disability is a key priority for NIC. We offer a wide range of services, supports and resources for students. For more information visit: Accessible Learning Services.

Program Highlights

Taught by experienced organic farmers and horticulturalists, this program is designed to familiarize students with the main theories of organic market garden operations and production techniques. Covered is safety training, planting, transplanting, weeding, pest identification and control, irrigation and fencing. You’ll also learn in-greenhouse propagation, pruning, seeding, pest identification and control, irrigation and humidity.

Career Opportunities

With the cost of produce from California continually increasing and a growing awareness of the environmental costs associated with trucking and transportation, there is a huge opportunity for market gardening to expand in the Alberni Valley and beyond. This expansion will require trained gardeners to work on the farms and to own and operate market gardens.


This program is offered Monday- Friday during the daytime at Shelter Farm.

Supply List

Please come to the first day of class with comfortable clothes and shoes and be prepared to work outside.