The University of Maryland Extension Master Gardeners 2019 “Grow It, Eat It” gardening lecture series will return later this month.
The courses are slated to start on Tuesday, Jan. 22, at the UMD Extension Carroll County Office, 700 Agricultural Center Drive, Westminster, and structured for the beginning gardener. They will highlight the basics for a successful gardening season.
“This seminar is perfect for the first-time gardener, a homeowner that is adding a new garden to an undeveloped area, or for anyone that would like to develop a green thumb,” said Courtney Coddington, UME Carroll County’s Master Gardener program coordinator.
The series kicks off with considerations for planning a new garden led by Master Gardeners Terry Heinard and Esther Iglich, and other topics include Master Gardeners’ favorite veggies and fruits for Carroll County, maintaining the garden, as well as which insects to welcome in the garden and what pests to discourage.
There will be two lecture topics each Tuesday until Feb. 26, and the topics will be separated by an intermission break featuring informative displays with interactive topics like microscope diagnostics, garden tools and composters, obtaining soil samples, and more. There will even be a game of bug bingo.
Participants can sign up for the whole series — six classes — for $50 or choose from individual class days. Each class day costs $10 which includes one set of materials and resources for the two course topics.
Master Gardener Sandy Cowman will be teaching a class about good bugs and bad bugs.
“I’ll be using a lot of pictures,” Cowman said. “I think seeing pictures of the bugs and where they’re located will help. I’m going to talk about the importance of patrolling your gardens daily and really looking at your plants. That’s the way you’ll be able to prevent a lot of damage.”
And Master Gardeners Marty Hankins and Kay Sedlak will teach the class about the best vegetables, herbs and fruits that grow in Carroll County, with an emphasis on how to grow tomatoes.
“I like that it’s like an a la carte menu,” Hankins said. “You can pick and choose which classes to take.”
Hankins said she thinks participants will enjoy the collaborative atmosphere of the classes.
“You’ll be in a room full of gardeners and gardening experts, and you’ll have resources to take home from the ‘Grow It, Eat It’ program,” she said. “We’ll have tools to get people started and displays to check out.