Odiyan Retreat Center


Hands-on training in all aspects of growing organic vegetables

Get real-world experience in organic farming at Odiyan. Learn practical skills from our master gardeners at our 2.5 acre organic community gardens, orchards, and greenhouses. Your farming education will include discussions, hands-on structured work-and-learn field sessions,  and field trips to other working organic farms. Be part of the process from seed to plate as you also learn to cook vegetarian meals from your own produce to help feed our community. 

Positions open now for Odiyan Hands-on organic garden training program.

Areas covered:

  • bed preparation, direct seeding, and transplanting
  • germinating vegetable and flower seeds, and transplanting
  • preparing flowerpots for display
  • preparing beds using the French double digging technique
  • establishing permaculture beds
  • buying seeds: choosing vegetables and varieties;
  • seeding in trays; choosing the area to seed or transplant;
  • companion plants, medicinal plants, insect- and bee-friendly plants

preparation of the area for planting, using drip irrigation and sprinklers
  • transplanting or direct seeding
  • establishing raised beds and hoop house
  • hydroponic farming
  • using rototillers and other equipment
  • composting and mulching
  • harvesting, incl. cleaning, storing, and preserving (pickling, freezing, fermenting)
  • dealing with pests without most pesticides, pros and cons
  • good weeds, bad weeds.

Includes room and board, stipend, acquiring new skills, opportunities to participate in Buddhist practices and study.

All new residents must be fully vaccinated, including the first booster recommended in 2021. The current 2nd booster (2022) is not required.

If you have questions, or would like the application emailed to you, contact  volunteer@odiyan.org

Or call our volunteer office  510-981-1987

You can also check out our FAQs for more information.