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Master Gardeners to offer class

October 15, 2009

Is your green thumb itching to try something new? Do you love to learn and share what you know? Then you could be a Master Gardener.

Master Gardeners are volunteer educators. They teach people safe, effective gardening techniques through plant clinics, talks, demonstration gardens and more.

Trained by University of Maryland experts, Master Gardeners grow their gardening know-how through 40 hours of classroom training. They learn about everything from botany to bugs, pruning to propagation, and weeds to wildlife.

Applications are now being accepted for the Master Gardener Class of 2010.

Training will be on Thursdays from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. from Feb. 11 to April 8 at the Washington County Agricultural Education Center off Sharpsburg Pike, seven miles south of Hagerstown.

Then the giving starts. Master Gardeners turn their gift for gardening into gifts to the community. You'll find them answering questions at the farmers market, teaching children about vegetables at local schools, planting heirloom plants at the Rural Heritage Museum, offering horticulture therapy to teens and adults, and giving talks to local garden clubs. Over a dozen projects reach every corner of the county.

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"It's our mission to help build healthier gardens and communities," said Master Gardener coordinator Annette Ipsan. "By teaching environmentally responsible techniques, we give gardeners effective tools to solve problems and build a greener world."

Class size is limited. To learn more about the Master Gardener program and to request an application, contact Ipsan at 301-791-1604 or e-mail aipsan@umd.edu.

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