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Janet Laminack: Master gardeners prepare for Fall Garden Fest on Oct. 14

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Janet Laminack

You may think the garden season is only in the spring, but fall is one of our best times for gardening. Now is the time to plant shrubs and trees in your landscape so they can get well established before the heat of summer. 

Also, the fall is a time of many educational opportunities. To inspire and educate you, the Denton County Master Gardener Association is hosting its annual Fall Garden Fest on Saturday, Oct. 14. This year, this family-friendly free event will be from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the North Texas Fairgrounds, 2217 N. Carroll Blvd., which is a new location from previous years.

This year's theme is "Pollinators" with presentations by Ricky Linex of the National Resource Conservation Service on "Prairie Plants and Pollinators" and Roger Sanderson, horticulturalist at the Texas Discovery Gardens, on "Creating a Butterfly Garden." 

There will be a panel discussion on "Urban Beekeeping" and a presentation on "The Monarch Highway." There will also be opportunities to learn more about vegetable gardening, container gardens, herbs, lawns, snakes, composting and worm composting among other topics at the many educational booths. Visit the events page at www.dcmga.com to learn more.

Speaking of the Denton County Master Gardener Association, have you considered becoming one of these volunteers? If so, we have an informational open house from 10 a.m. to noon Wednesday, Oct. 18 at the Denton County Extension Office at the Joseph A. Carroll Building, 401 W. Hickory St. in Denton. You will have the opportunity to mix and mingle with master gardeners and to ask questions to learn if this program is a "best fit" for you. Applications are due Oct. 20 for the 2018 class that runs Jan. 30 through May 1.

Most on-going master gardener educational activities are open to the public. Join the Herbal Branch from 10 to 11 a.m. Monday, Oct. 23, also at the Extension office in the Joseph A. Carroll Building, for a presentation on basil. Also scheduled is a presentation on "Growing Microgreens" from 10 to 11 a.m. Monday, Nov. 27 at the Extension office.

The DCMGA general meeting is typically the second Wednesday of the month at the Extension office from 9:30 to 11 a.m., which includes an educational presentation. The next meeting is Wednesday and it will be about growing maple trees in Texas. The Nov. 8 meeting will be about holiday floral design.

On Thursday, Nov. 2, we will be offering a class for professional landscapers and arborists. This all-day class will provide two re-certification credits from the International Society of Arboriculture and is pending approval for five continuing education units (CEUs) from the Texas Department of Agriculture for pesticide applicators. Registration costs $40, which includes lunch. For more information on this class and to register, visit denton.agrilife.org and look under the urban horticulture tab or the upcoming events. Or you can call us at 940-349-2883.

If you have questions about your lawns, fall veggie gardens, trees, shrubs, etc., give the DCMGA help desk a call. They can be reached at 940-349-2892 or via email at master.gardener@dentoncounty.com.

JANET LAMINACK is the horticulture county extension agent with Texas AgriLife Extension. She can be reached at 940-349-2883 or via email at jelaminack@ag.tamu.edu.

FEATURED PHOTO: Members of the Denton County Master Gardener Association prepare the Bayless-Selby House garden in May for a tour.
Courtesy photo