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Coronavirus COVID-19

COVID-19 Advisory: WSU Extension is working to keep our communities safe. All Extension programming is being provided virtually, postponed, or canceled. Effective March 16, 2020, WSU Extension county offices and WSU Research & Extension Centers will be closed to the public. We are available via email, phone, and webconference.

Master Gardener Events

Program Contact: Yakima Master Gardeners
(509)574-1604 • gardener@co.yakima.wa.us


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2020 Events

The “Taking Care of Our Earth” series continues…

“Critters, Creepers and Conservation”

Come join us for the third Taking Care of Our Earth class series.  This year we will be learning about Critters, Creepers (plants & animals!) and Conservation.  Children aged 5 to 13 will collect and learn to identify different insects- good and bad-with their Mac’s Field Guide.  They will learn about native plants, find out why they are important to our environment and will plant native seeds to grow their own seedlings.  Youth will make a birdseed feeder, an insect trap, plant a variety of other pollinators that they can take home to put in their own gardens and MORE!!! 

This is a two-part class: 10:00 to Noon on April 18th and April 25th. It will be in our Master Gardener Greenhouse, 1522 S. 18th Ave., Yakima.

Just $5 per child for the full two-week experience!   REGISTER HERE!

Spring Symposium

Four Wednesday evenings in March.

The last two lectures are indefinitely postponed due to Coronavirus concerns!
Fascinating lectures for Central Washington gardeners!

March 4, 2020

Appreciating Our Natural Heritage in Our Own BackyardsTerri Knoke

We’ll go back 10,000 years to what the PNW used to look like to gain an understanding of the relatively rapid evolution of our flora in the PNW. In particular, Lomatiums will be highlighted due to their relative importance in Tribal culture of western United States, and the unusual diversity of this plant in Yakima County. The threats to our native habitats will be discussed as well.

The second half of this presentation will be on the benefits of moving away from high water use landscaping to those designs that support the native environment, and how to begin the process of creating native habitat in your own backyard with help from the Heritage Garden Program.

March 11, 2020

Planting and Germinating Native Plants Ann Autrey

It’s not easy to grow native plants from seed. Explore the various methods needed to germinate native seeds and reproduce lush native gardens with limited water.

March 18, 2020

Garden MythsDr. Linda Chalker-Scott

Your neighbors, your Aunt Mabel, Mom and Dad… they probably gave you advice about tricks to make your garden more successful, pest-free, etc. Chances are, that advice had little basis in science, or science has since been revised. And well-meaning as that old hand-me-down advice might be, it could be problematic! Linda has devoted her career to studying such myths, and done the research to prove or disprove them. This is both an educational and entertaining evening. And of great use to us as gardeners!

March 25, 2020

A Desire for More, The Miller Garden Story Richie Steffen

When the Millers purchased five acres of land perched on the bluffs overlooking Puget Sound no one could have guessed at the garden Mrs. Miller would create. Driven by a passion for plants and a desire to learn about gardening she developed a world class collection of rare and unusual specimens. Richie Steffen, executive director of the Elisabeth Miller Botanical Garden will be sharing stories on the history of how the garden was developed as well and the some of the influences and inspirations that drove Mrs. Miller. Using marvelous photographs of this beautiful oasis, Richie will also share how the garden is keeping Mrs. Miller’s vision alive today and into the future.

Plant Sale

Thousands of bedding plants, hanging baskets, yard art and more.
First weekend in May.  Watch here for details.

2020 Classes in the Gardens

Ahtanum Youth Park
Free Classes & Free Parking
1000 Ahtanum Road, Union Gap
Classes begin at 10:00 AM
Limited Seating-Bring a lawn chair if you have one.

May 9 Mason Bees

Gentle Pollinators: How to lure them to your garden and keep them coming back.

May 23 Alternatives to Lawns

With what? How? Options to consider.

Jun 13 Raised Bed Gardening

Advantages/disadvantages, site selection, materials, construction, paths, and other features

Jun 27 Worms In Our Gardens

How worms help us in our gardens and our lives

Jul 11 Enabled Gardening

An enabled garden will use concepts such as raised garden beds, modified tools, and wider  pathways to achieve both accessibility and  functionality. The ultimate goal is to have a garden that can be enjoyed by everyone from the very young to the very old, and even the blind and wheelchair bound.

Jul 25 Deadheading

Pros and Cons; Do’s and Don’ts;  Hands on practice opportunity

Aug 8 Creating Garden Rooms

Converting garden spaces; starting anew;  defining a garden room.

Aug 22 Propagating Plants Without Seeds

Cuttings; grafting & budding; division & layering

Sep 12 Seed Starting Now (Fall & Winter Planning)

Seed catalogs; warmth & light; timing

Sep 26 Shrubs & Trees for Screening

Do they have to be just arborvitae?   What about seasonal color?

October 24th – – Pumpkin Fun for Children

Kids will be provided with mini-pumpkins to create decorated masterpieces to take home.
Held at Ahtanum Youth Park – – across from Our Master Gardener Demonstration Garden

Heirloom Garden
Free Classes & Free Parking
1522 South 18th Ave.
Classes begin at 10:00 AM
Limited Seating-Bring a lawn chair if you have one.

May 16

Creating Fertile Soil

High yields from small gardens can quickly deplete soil fertility.  We’ll cover basic concepts about building quality soil with high fertility. When you have good soil the plants will grow themselves!

June 20

Small Gardens 

Make the most of the space you have by thinking vertically, using trellises, containers, and hanging pots.  How ’bout sequential planting?

July 18

Edible Landscapes

Mix edible and ornamental plants to maximize space without sacrificing beauty.

August 15

Art in the Garden

Something about how art can be free or low cost when made from recycled materials and how scale and placement are especially important in small gardens.

September 19

Herbs 

They are easy to grow and are the perfect plant for small gardens and containers.  Lots of ideas about how to use herbs in cooking.