Skip to Site Navigation | Skip to Local Navigation | Skip to Content
Cabrillo College - Home
students on campuscabrillo campus

beesrain barrellresidentialgardening woman

Home, Garden & Water Conservation Classes



Tiny Houses, ADU's, and other Small Spaces


Have you considered building a tiny house, an ADU or a “granny-unit”? Have you ever wondered what exactly the difference is between those three, and what the positives and negatives might be for each? Do you have questions about design concepts for small spaces? Do you want to scale down your life and are thinking about a smaller, energy efficient living space that is “net-zero”?  This workshop will help demystify and untangle some of the concepts and give you real tools to move forward.

During this comprehensive 2-day workshop students will hear from professionals in the fields of green building and energy efficiency, residential design and construction, computer aided design software, and Santa Cruz County building codes.

1st Saturday, morning presentation at the Cabrillo’s Solari Green Technology Center will cover Santa Cruz County’s rules, regulations, and definitions for Tiny Homes, Accessory Dwelling Units (ADU’s) and Efficiency Units. Other topics include:

      • Review of construction constraints, dimension and features, land use rules and issues that pertain to vehicles versus real property
      • Define of what H.E.R.S. is and how it affects building design, permitting, and construction under the 2016 Energy and Building Codes and Standards
      • Discussion of the depreciation and appreciation of real property assets, the cost of land
      • Conclude with a review of the permit application process, including zoning

1st Saturday, afternoon session Cabrillo’s Solari Green Technology Center will include:

      • A visual tour of a tiny home in progress and Cabrillo’s Solari Green Technology Center to compare and contrast sustainable techniques with conventional building standards as they related to Tiny Homes and small structures
      • A discussion about the purpose and ultimate goal of Tiny Homes
      • An introduction to passive, solar photovoltaic, and solar thermal), Environmental Indoor Quality, and Building Science Principles and Practices
      • An overview of how all of these concepts are integrated into the design and construction of safe, healthy, efficient, durable, and affordable small spaces

2nd Saturday, morning session at the STEM Center in Aptos will cover concepts relating to architecture and design. This session will include:

      • Overview of building design strategies with special emphasis on small structures and small living spaces.
      • Discussion regarding how passive solar materials and energy efficient systems can be used as part of design, as well as overall design concepts  
      • Hands on review of working drawings for buildings
      • Slide presentation of completed structures as examples of the design concepts.

2nd Saturday, afternoon session at the STEM Center in Aptos will focus on Computer Aided Design (CAD) and Building Information Management (BIM), and how they can be used for design of small spaces. It will include:

      • A brief tour of Cabrillo’s STEM Center.
      • A review of software used for C.A.D. & B.I.M., including an overview of free apps that are available, and the pros and cons of each.
      • A discussion about the typical C.A.D. & B.I.M. learning curve and the evolving state of the art.
      • A comparison of the potential benefits of hiring an architect versus learning how to use C.A.D. & B.I.M. applications as tools for design & documentation of projects.
      • A  simple hands-on instructor-led exercise using B.I.M. software in one of the STEM center’s computer labs.

Students will receive handouts and resources from each of the presentations. Please bring a lunch and a drink, there will be a one hour lunch break between morning and afternoon sessions.

2 Sat., Dec. 2 & 9
9:00 am - 4:00 pm
Sat., Dec 2 meets at the Solari Green Tech Center, Watsonville Center, room C108
Click HERE for a map
Sat., Dec 9 meets at the Aptos campus STEM Center, room 801 Click HERE for an interactive map
Register by Sept. 11: $98
Register after Sept. 11: $105
plus a
$10 materials fee payable at registration


register online



Jim Heaney, Cabrillo Construction Code Instructor and Plans Inspector for Santa Cruz County Planning Department.

Chuck Mornard, Cabrillo’s Construction Energy Management Program Chair and licenced General contractor

Bill Fisher, Cabrillo Architecture Instructor and owner of William Fisher Architecture, Inc.

Gary Marcoccia,  is a full-time instructor in the Natural and Applied Sciences Division and teaches Engineering Technology and CAD.

Dennis Diego is a Building Information Modeling (B I M) instructor at Cabrillo, and is the principal architect and owner of DDA, an architectural design consulting firm.


Landlording Made Easy


If you are a landlord, or are thinking about becoming one, this class will provide you with the basics of managing real estate. Learn how to legally advertise, screen applicants, develop procedures and build excellent tenant relationships.

We will cover the ins and outs of a proper lease, the necessary addendum, and what you can and can’t put into a lease. Know the documentation needed to protect you, the property and the tenant. We’ll go over basic Fair Housing laws and legal requirements with tips and tricks to lead to an easier land lording experience.

Bring your lunch if you want to participate in one-on-one Q & A time.

Sat., March 3
9:00 am - 3:30 pm
Room: 425

Register by Jan. 29: $90
Register after Jan. 29: $98

plus $10 materials fee payable at class

register online


Kathleen Richards, MS, MPM, Broker/Owner of a local Property Management company. She has professionally managed real estate for 15 years and has served on local and state boards for property mgmt. trade associations. She published Property Management A-Z in 2015.


Laundry to Landscape: Hands-on Greywater Recycling Installation Workshop


With our warmest months approaching it’s a great time to plan for ways to water your land- scaping or spring garden as efficiently as possible. This class gives participants information about how to use, re-purpose and redirect your laundry wastewater for landscape and garden irrigation, and get hands-on experience installing a system in a residential setting.

The first half of the day covers code requirements, greywater compatible products and plants, greywater parts and materials identification, how to calculate irrigation field size and plant water requirements, how to construct a mulch basin, how to create a design for your system, and ultimately how to maintain your greywater system.

After a one hour lunch break we will travel to the workshop installation site, a local resident/volunteer’s home, to complete an installation. Directions to site are given in class.

Don't forget to bring a lunch, sunscreen, a water bottle! If you want to really be "hands on" at the installation, bring your favorite gloves and shovel.

Please note: The workshop starts at 9 am, but please arrive by 8:45 am to check in!

Hands-on installation demonstration will be from 1-4 pm

Sat., March 10
9:00 am - 4:00 pm
Room: 711 and off-site for installation, see above for details
Register by Jan. 29: $78
Register after Jan. 29: $85

register online

Jim Heaney has been employed at the County of Santa Cruz Planning Department for the past 14 years as a Building Plans Examiner and a Building Inspector.  In addition, Jim is part time faculty at Cabrillo College, where he has been teaching the Commercial and Residential Building Codes, the Uniform Plumbing and Mechanical Codes over the last 12 years.  He is also a volunteer consultant for the Central Coast Greywater Alliance.


feng shui living room

Feng Shui Introduction


Our homes reflect who we are. We can enhance them to improve health, relationship, career and prosperity. In this class you will be introduced to the original wisdom of Feng Shui from which the Feng Shui principles are based including Taoism, Ying Yang Theory, Five Elements, and more. The Feng Shui Map called The Ba Gua will be introduced in this class.

This class is designed for students to learn the principles of Feng Shui and how to apply them to their home. Whether you are planning to redesign a kitchen, bathroom, office or a complete remodel, or wish to understand the energetics of your site as it exists, then this class is for you. You will learn the tools needed to understand and activate Feng Shui Energetics into your design/site.

Sat., Sept. 30
10:00 am - 4:00 pm
Room: 435

Register by Sept. 11: $78
Register after Sept 11: $85

plus $5 materials fee payable at registration

register online

Madhu Brodkey - see bio below


Clearing Your Clutter: A Feng Shui Workshop





Do you have too much stuff everywhere? Do you feel stuck and want to move forward? Are you imagining the busy winter holiday season and want to "open your space"? Do you feel like there are obstacles in your path as you move towards the New Year? Clutter can cause you to feel tired, depressed, or create obstacles to wealth, romance, and opportunity. Clearing clutter can improve your health, attitude, creativity, finances, love life, and so much more!

You will learn to identify your clutter type and develop a plan to eliminate it, decide where and how to get started, and let go of the past and move forward with your life!

Sat., October 21
10:00 am - 4:00 pm
Room: 435

Register by Sept. 11: $78
Register after Sept 11: $85

plus $5 materials fee payable at registration

register online

Madhu Brodkey is a Black Tantric Buddhist and Master Feng Shui Consultant. She combines this expertise with her 30 years of experience in healing arts with design to harmonize and balance the vital energy of an environment and its occupants.


bee friendly

Bee-Friendly Garden - How to Create a Bee Sanctuary in Your Backyard


Would you like to create a beautiful garden and also do your part to save the bees, all in one? A huge part of keeping honey bees healthy is to ensure they have the plants they need to survive available to them year round. Join Emily for this one-day workshop on bee-friendly gardening by starting the day at Cabrillo for a discussion and presentation on native plants, drought tolerant plants, perennial and annual flowering plants and basic bee-friendly landscape design. We’ll then break for lunch and make our way to Native Revival Nursery, just a few minutes from campus, where we will walk the grounds to see, smell and touch some recommended plants for your very own Bee Friendly Garden. This class helps us all save the bees and make our gardens more beautiful at the same time!

Students go home with a small bee-friendly garden starter kit from Native Revival Nursery, a plant list that breaks down the best bee plants by size, annual blooming schedule, place of origin and water needs.

Sat., March 3
1:00 - 4:00 pm
Room: 1605 and Native Revival Nursery in Aptos. Click HERE for an interactive campus map.

Register by Jan. 29: $50
Register after Jan. 29: $58

plus $25 materials fee payable at registration

register online


Emily Bondor - see bio below


Beekeeping Basics and Honeybee Biology



Whether you are interested in learning sustainable backyard beekeeping practices or just want a better understanding of how these delicate, intricate creatures benefit us and our planet, you will leave this class a-buzz with new energy!

This course covers hive structure, colony dynamics and delve into basic honeybee biology. We will discuss the history of beekeeping, from honey production to pollination contracts, and discuss current trends (and rifts) in colony management practices. Weather permitting, there will be a field trip to Emily's Apiary in Santa Cruz for a real-life "hive dive".

By the end of the course, students who are interested in obtaining their own hive will have a good working understanding of equipment, tools, management practices, bee biology, and how we can work together to support these very vital pollinators.

This class is appropriate for adults with little to no experience in keeping bees.

2 Sat., Feb. 24 & Mar. 3
9:30 am - 12 noon
Room: 1605
- Click HERE for an interactive campus map.
Register by Jan. 29: $68
Register after Jan. 29: $75

plus $5 materials fee payable at registration

register online


Emily Bondor - see bio below



Intermediate Beekeeping



This class is designed for students with knowledge of beekeeping, and those who have beehives. We will discuss keeping bees locally, the way to start a hive (package versus nucleus), and different option for foundation. The class will focus on IPM approaches, different options for tackling parasitic Varroa mites, and seasonal hive management techniques. We will review natural approaches to IPM in place of harsh chemicals. Students will be encouraged to compare notes and strategies, and to foster community engagement and mentorship. Students will leave with detailed knowledge about treating for Varroa mites, and a seasonal outline for hive management. 

Sat., March 24
10:00 am - 3:00 pm
Room: 1605 - Click HERE for an interactive campus map.

Register by Jan. 29: $68
Register after Jan. 29: $75

plus $5 materials fee payable at registration

register online


Emily Bondor is a bay area Beekeeper and Educator. Her expertise is in promoting responsible honeybee genetics and breeding queens from locally adapted genetic stock. She works in Napa Valley managing bee-hives and is currently pursuing Master Beekeeping Classes through the Honeybee Lab at UC Davis.


dream h

Build Your Dream House


Times have changed. It's more difficult to buy a house and in many parts of the country house prices are still too high. There is another way. You can build your own house and be mortgage free in just a few years without the worries about losing your house to foreclosure.

This 3-hour class will steer you in the right direction to building your own house for the least amount of money. Learn how to: buy land at county tax sales; buy materials for next to nothing and build it green, too; design your house for ease of construction; live on your property rent free while you build; use unconventional financing; and get the best help for the least cost.

Sat., Oct. 7
10:00 am - 1:00 pm
Room: 429
Register by Sept. 11: $50
Register after Sept 11: $58

plus $20 material fee for text payable at class

register online

David Cook, author of Build Your Dream House for a Song, is a former salesman and restaurant owner. He'd barely picked up a hammer before starting work on his dream house in Marin County. Since building his house in Northern California, David Cook has started teaching would-be homebuilders his secrets to home ownership--truly believing that everyone should be able to live in a dream home he or she owns free and clear.



    Was this page helpful?    
Ask Cabrillo WebAdvisor Cabrillo Library Cabrillo Bookstore  Canvas icon  Facebook Icon Twitter Icon YouTube

© 2013 Cabrillo Community College District

Campus Safety | Accessibility | Title IX

Main Campus, 6500 Soquel Drive Aptos CA 95003, 831.479.6100