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Janet Laminack: Gardening can be creative answer for New Year’s resolution

A new year is a time for transformation, when many people think of getting more exercise, learning something new and having more fun.

Of course, I have the silver-bullet answer for all your New Year’s resolutions … take up gardening. Gardening is great exercise, a creative outlet, intellectually stimulating and a popular leisure activity.

Start by transforming your own landscape to reflect your own goals. You can improve the curb appeal and appearance of your home, reduce energy bills by strategically planting trees, add edibles to your flower beds or cut back on water use by reducing your lawn areas and planting native and drought-tolerant plants.

To help you get started, the Denton County Master Gar­dener Association has partnered with the Denton Public Library to offer a class on residential landscape design from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday and Jan. 15 and 22 at the North Branch Library, 3020 N. Lo­cust St.

In this class you will learn the classical elements of design and the design process. Classes will cover constructing a plot plan, developing a landscape planting plan and much more.

Participants will also receive a landscape design kit.

Class size is limited. There is no charge to attend; however, registration is required by calling 940-349-8752.

The three-part class will also be offered at the Flower Mound Public Library. For information about classes at this location, call 972-874-6165.

It’s also the time of year when the Denton County Soil and Water Conservation District offers its tree seedlings to the public for a very low price. This year there are 15 varieties of hardwood and evergreen trees from which to choose, including pecan, redbud, oaks and roughleaf dogwood. The trees are sold in paper containers, by the bare root or in 1-gallon pots. Trees are pre-ordered with a limited supply available.

To place an order, call Mikel Thomas at the NRCS office at 940-383-2691, ext. 3.  Orders will be taken now through Feb. 14, and the trees will be ready for pickup Feb. 22 at the North Texas State Fairgrounds in Denton from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Information on all our upcoming educational programs is available at, or e-mail us at

JANET LAMINACK is the horticulture county extension agent with Texas AgriLife Extension. She can be reached at 940-349-2883. Her e-mail address is