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Winter Gardening Series: Jump-Starting The Garden Season

Jan 19, 2018 • by Penn State Extension Master Gardeners
Master Gardeners

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 February 8, Master Gardeners Karen George and Martey Costellowill 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 February 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 February 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  If a yard or garden is in need of a facelift, Master Gardeners can offer remedies for overgrown, outdated and aging plantings.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:  or by phone, 1-877-345-0691. 

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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