CORVALLIS - Home gardeners from around the state with a little or a lot of experience can pick up practical pointers to make gardening easier at the 10th annual "Insights into Practical Gardening," workshop on Saturday, March 4, at Oregon State University.

The workshop will run from 8:30 a.m. to 3:15 p.m. at OSU's LaSells Stewart Center in Corvallis. The keynote speaker is Ann Lovejoy, nationally recognized as one of the country's leading garden experts. From the Seattle area, Lovejoy will speak and show slides on "Naturalistic Gardening: Reflecting the Planting Patterns of Nature."

The all-day workshop is sponsored by the Benton County Master Gardeners and the OSU Extension Service. The sessions will feature an array of practical and hands-on gardening classes and displays, with an on-site OSU Book Store with garden books and an OSU Extension publications table.

Registration is $15. A box lunch is offered at $6.75 if preordered with registration.

Classes offered by leading Northwest garden experts include:


  • "Carefree Old Garden Roses," by Louise Clements of Heirloom Garden Roses in St. Paul, Ore.


  • "Let's Figure It Out," a session on troublesome gardening questions, by Jan and Ray McNeilan, OSU Extension garden experts and co-authors of "The Pacific Northwest Gardener's Book of Lists."


  • "Hobby Greenhouses," by Cynthia Foster, greenhouse practices instructor at Chemeketa Community College.


  • "Water Gardening," by Loretta Downs, owner of Downs by the Pond, a water gardening business in the Eugene area.


  • "Garden Rooms With a View," by Phil Thornburg, a landscape designer and contractor.


  • "Tried and True Seeds and What's New," by Joel Reiten, research and farm manager at Territorial Seed Company in Cottage Grove.

Displays will be set up all day on land and water management on small acreage; water gardening tips; native plants in the landscape; composting using worms; well-water testing; habitat for birds, butterflies and bats; insects as friends and foes; growing colorful spring bulbs in containers; and soil amendments.

The workshop usually fills quickly and preregistration is required. Interested persons are urged to pick up a registration flyer at selected Benton County nurseries and garden suppliers, the Corvallis-Benton County Public Library or call the Benton County Extension office in Corvallis at 541-766-6750 for a flyer and more information.

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Linda Ahlers, 541-757-1789