Recreation — OSU gardening class promises expertise in 11 short weeks

McMINNVILLE — When the Oregon State University Master Gar­den­er program says no experience is necessary to join the class, they mean it. To join the program, the only requirements are a passion for gardening, a willingness to learn and a desire to share gardening information with the public — and a $140 class fee.

“Participants can expect to receive a broad and science-based education in sustainable gardening. Classes on soils, basic botany, water-wise gardening, composting, entomology, vegetable gardening and tree fruits, plant problem diagnosis and plant protection will enable gardeners to make informed decisions about how to plan, plant and maintain a garden that meets their needs — but protects natural resources,” said Gail Langellotto, statewide coordinator for the program. “After classroom instruction is complete, students will have the opportunity to apply their knowledge by answering the public’s gardening questions, providing information and advice on school and community gardens, and teaching others in their community.”

The program started in 1972 in Washington due to demand for gardening information, and since has expanded into most of the United States, according to Linda McMahan, OSU extension community horticulturist. In 1996, the program came to Yamhill County.

Langellotto said the classes are popular.

Training begins Jan. 9 in the Public Works Au­di­tor­ium at the OSU Extension Office on Lafayette Ave­nue. Classes are from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. every Thursday for 11 weeks. To learn more, visit http://extension.oregon gardeners or call 1-503-434-7517.

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