Instructor Profiles

Christina Cook

Courses Taught



Ecological Plant Knowledge 1 - Natives
Ecological Plant Knowledge 2 - Ornamentals


Ecological Landscape Design 1 & 2 (classroom)
Organic Master Gardener (classroom)
Organic Horticulture for Landscape Professionals
Plant Knowledge for Organic Gardeners (classroom)


The Art of Online Facilitation, Gaia College (2019)
Director, SOUL (2005-2019)
Pollinator Steward Certifiation, (2018)
Diploma in Organic Land Care, Gaia College (2011)
Growing Food in the City, Gaia College (2011)
Organic Horticulture for Landscape Professionals, Gaia College (2006)
SOUL Certified Organic Land Care Professional (2005)
Organic Landscape Management course, Gaia College (2004)
Master Composter/Waste Advisor, Calgary (2000)
Landscape Architecture degree, Germany (1996)
Landscape Gardening apprenticeship, Germany (1991)


My current main occupation is running The Organic Gardener's Pantry in Victoria, B.C., which I took over from Phil Nauta, a friend and colleague at Gaia College, in 2010. Up until then I've been offering garden design and consultation as well as gardening services, sometimes as a garden centre staff member and also in self employment. I still do the odd design and maintenance job, for fun and diversion. Together with teaching Gaia College courses in the fall and winter, this keeps me nicely busy.

Before immigration to Canada, I had received a degree in landscape architecture and extensive industry training in Germany. However, I always felt that there was something important missing. In the first few years I spent in Calgary, I inched closer, initially studying and then teaching composting, recycling, and waste diversion.

I finally found the answer to that "something" upon moving to Victoria in 2003, joining SOUL, and meeting Heide and Michael Hermary who had just founded Gaia College. My approach to horticulture shifted completely, joyfully embracing organic principles. Looking back, I can say this has been a life changing development, not only professionally but also personally. Finally a lot of pieces clicked into place!

An early graduate of Gaia College, I became a SOUL Certified Organic Land Care Professional in 2005 and soon after that, an instructor with Gaia College, teaching a range of courses both in-classroom and on-line. In 2011, I completed the Gaia College Diploma — and the journey goes on.

I look forward to further broadening the mind by exchanging thoughts, knowledge, and experience with a diversity of people. A "student of life" in times of considerable local and global challenges, I feel a strong dedication to living in harmony with each other and with the earth.

My (rented) garden is home to a happy mix and mingle of many beautiful ornamental/ native/ food plants. Puttering around the yard keeps me grounded, as does reading and listening to music from Renaissance to Pink Floyd. I enjoy Victoria's lively cultural scene, walking the beaches, practicing yoga, kayaking, and zooming around on my 390 KTM Duke.


The Organic Gardener's Pantry

Green Calgary

I co-wrote the three free e-books you can find at the SOUL web site:

Society For Organic Urban Land Care