Extension’s Gardening in Nevada courses return nearly in February

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Extension and its certified master gardeners offer “Gardening in Nevada: The Bartley Ranch Series”. The series, which is online via Zoom this year, is intended for everyone who wants to work in the garden – for those with large yards, small yards or just patio or balcony areas. These courses, offered in partnership with Bartley Ranch and Washoe Counties Regional Parks and Open Space, are free and run every Tuesday, February 2nd through March 30th, 6pm to 8pm.

“This series was held annually at Bartley Ranch in February and March,” said Rachel McClure, Master Gardener extension coordinator for Washoe County. “The classes, which vary from year to year based on the needs of the local community, provide the why and how of people who live, grow and reap in our region of northern Nevada.”

The courses are taught by horticulturalists, experts and certified volunteer master gardeners, as well as local business owners. For some classes, continuing education units from the International Society of Arboriculture may be available. The lessons include:

  • February 2nd: Select and grow fruit trees – Extension Master Gardener’s Volunteer and Certified Arborist Michael Janik will speak about fruit tree varieties for Northern Nevada and their needs, including soil, USDA growing zones and cooling hours, irrigation and pest control. Continuing education units from the International Society of Arboriculture have been requested for this class. Register online for the Selecting and Growing Fruit Trees class.
  • February 9: Container and indoor gardening —Rachel McClure, Master Gardener Coordinator for the Washoe County Expansion, will discuss the pros and cons of growing containers and indoor spaces for year-round indoor food production. This lecture helps the participants to set realistic goals and recognize the possibilities. Register online for the Container and Indoor Gardening class.
  • February 16: Beekeeping: 10 first year lessons – Douglas County Extension Educator Lindsay Chichester will discuss what trial and error she learned as a bee keeper during the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic. She will also provide suggestions and advice to others who may be interested in honey bee keeping and discuss future plans for the Douglas County’s beekeeping project expansion. Register online for beekeeping: 10 lessons from first grade.
  • February 23: Perennials in the garden – Georgette Porter, Extension Master Gardener volunteer, shows participants how to have perennial flowers in their gardens year after year. From ordinary to unexpected, Porter will talk about the benefits of planting perennials in our desert-rich environment. Register online for the perennials in the garden class.
  • March 2nd: train and prune fruit trees – Michael Janik, Extension Master Gardener’s Volunteer Gardener and Certified Arborist, will present basics of pruning fruit trees including how trees respond to pruning, how to control size with appropriate rhizomes, early training to reduce the need for pruning if the Tree ripens and when to prune. Continuing education units from the International Society of Arboriculture have been requested for this class. Register online for the Training and Pruning Fruit Trees class.
  • March 9th: Gardening is for the birds – Suzanne Adams, Extension Master Gardener volunteer, will discuss which plants encourage wild birds to visit and perhaps build houses in the garden. Plants provide food and habitat for many migratory birds, as well as those who stay in the area year round. Adams will identify some of the most common birds along with their preferred plants for both diet and home. The discussion will focus on techniques to keep these plants healthy. Register online for gardening for the Birds class.
  • March 16: Insect pests in the vegetable garden – Melody Hefner, Coordinator of the Integrated Pesticide Management and Pesticide Safety Enhancement Program, will discuss the identification and integrated pest management (IPM) for common insect pests in the vegetable garden. IPM measures include prevention, cultural controls and hygiene, mechanical or physical controls, biological controls and chemical controls. Detecting insect pests early and implementing pest control plans can significantly reduce insect pests in vegetable gardens. Register online for the Insect Pests in the Vegetable Garden class.
  • March 23rd: Native plants in the landscape – Heidi Kratsch, horticultural specialist for extensions, will present the advantages of integrating native plants into the landscape, show photos of a large number of well-suited native plants for our region and discuss their growth conditions, care and maintenance. Register online for the native plants in the Landscape class.
  • March 30th: Successful vegetable garden – Randy Robison, Extension Master Gardener Volunteer, will share his secrets regarding harvesting abundant, award-winning products from raised beds in our high desert climates, including how the soil can be modified to help crops, crop rotation strategies to increase yields and companion plants to deter pests. Register online for the “Successful Vegetable Garden” course.

For more information on Gardening in Nevada: The Bartley Ranch Series or general horticultural inquiries, contact Extension at 775-784-4848 or the Extension website. People in need of special accommodation or assistance should call at least three days before the scheduled event.