Win­ter gar­den­ing series jump starts the gar­den sea­son

Northern Berks Patriot Item - - LOCAL NEWS - From Penn State Ex­ten­sion

Penn State Ex­ten­sion Mas­ter Gar­den­ers are of­fer­ing a Win­ter Gar­den­ing Series of how-to top­ics for area gar­den­ers on four con­sec­u­tive Thurs­day evenings in Fe­bru­ary and March at the Berks County Agri­cul­tural Cen­ter in Bern Town­ship. All classes will be held in the Berks County Ag Cen­ter Au­di­to­rium from 7-9 p.m.

“There’s no bet­ter cure for cabin fever than plan­ning for spring gar­den­ing,” says Beth Fin­lay, Co­or­di­na­tor for the Mas­ter Gar­dener Pro­gram in Berks County. “The Win­ter Gar­den­ing Series is a chance to jump-start the gar­den sea­son, hone skills, learn new tech­niques, and lay plans for your health­i­est, most en­joy­able gar­dens ever.”

On Feb. 8, Mas­ter Gar­den­ers Karen Ge­orge and Martey Costello will present A Gar­dener’s Cal­en­dar for Win­ter and Spring, a monthly out­line to plan, pre­pare, and main­tain your gar­den. This class is a guide to what to do and when to do it for your veg­eta­bles, an­nu­als, peren­ni­als, shrubs, trees, and lawns to have a pro­lific gar­den­ing sea­son. A ses­sion cov­er­ing sum­mer and fall months will be pre­sented in our April Spring Gar­den­ing Series.

On Feb. 15, Wa­ter-wise Gar­den­ing and Stew­ard­ship in Home Gar­dens will tackle wa­ter use and con­ser­va­tion, and smart ap­proaches to pro­tect­ing both plants and the en­vi­ron­ment. Penn State Mas­ter Wa­ter­shed Ste­wards will team with Mas­ter Gar­den­ers to dis­cuss rain gar­dens, rain bar­rels, plant group­ings, and proven wa­ter­ing tech­niques.

The class on Feb. 22 will be a Fo­cus on Veg­eta­bles: tips and tech­niques for grow­ing veg­eta­bles in home gar­dens, land­scapes, and con­tain­ers. Mas­ter Gar­dener Pat Ma­gala will start the ses­sion with a gen­eral dis­cus­sion of seed se­lec­tion, seed start­ing, and veg­etable fam­i­lies. Then par­tic­i­pants will spend time at in-depth learn­ing sta­tions on raised beds and ver­ti­cal gar­den­ing; toma­toes and pep­pers, con­tainer grow­ing, veg­eta­bles in the land­scape; and seed start­ing and trans­plant­ing.

On March 1, Re­think­ing Your Land­scape will help par­tic­i­pants take a crit­i­cal look at their home plant­ings to de­cide what can be re­moved, re­placed, or re­ju­ve­nated. Land­scape plant­ings have a life cy­cle, and some plants sim­ply out­grow their ap­peal. If a yard or gar­den is in need of a facelift, Mas­ter Gar­den­ers can of­fer reme­dies for over­grown, out­dated and ag­ing plant­ings.

Par­tic­i­pants may choose in­di­vid­ual classes or may reg­is­ter for the whole series. Class sizes are lim­ited to per­mit hands-on learn­ing and time for dis­cus­sion.

Reg­is­tra­tion is re­quired, with a class fee of $10 per per­son per class. Reg­is­ter on­line at https://ex­ten­ work­shops or call 1-877345-0691.

The Penn­syl­va­nia State Univer­sity en­cour­ages qual­i­fied per­sons with dis­abil­i­ties to par­tic­i­pate in its pro­grams and ac­tiv­i­ties. If you an­tic­i­pate need­ing any type of ac­com­mo­da­tion or have ques­tions about the phys­i­cal access pro­vided, please con­tact us at 610-378-1327 in ad­vance of your par­tic­i­pa­tion or visit.

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