Upcoming Gardening and other Educational Programs

This is the time of year that is loaded up with opportunities to sharpen your skills or learn more about gardening, landscaping and related topics. The Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service provides a variety of educational programs and topics to the citizens of our great State. Here is a listing of some of the many upcoming programs in the northeast Texas area that might be of interest to you. For more details and other regional educational opportunities, go to the East Texas Gardening web site and the Educational Programs

The annual all-day East Texas Turfgrass Conference will once again be held at the Texas A&M AgriLife Research & Extension Center in Overton On February 6. Dr. Casey Reynolds, the new Extension Turfgrass Specialist from College Station, will present several topics, including Turfgrass Weed Identification and Control; Managing Various Turfgrass Species; and Calibrating Sprayers for Efficiency and Safety. Other topics include Efficient Irrigation Practices by Brad McCullough, licensed irrigator with Ewing Irrigation; a demonstration of pesticide drift control by Mr. Shane Colston with Winfield Solutions; and a Pesticide Laws and Regulations update by Dr. Mark Matocha Extension Specialist, Agriculture & Environmental Safety from College Station. Texas Dept. of Agriculture pesticide license holders can earn 4 CEU’s (bring your pesticide license number – driver’s license numbers will no longer be accepted). Registration starts at 8:00 a.m. and the programs begin at 8:30 a.m. Cost for the program is $30 and includes lunch. Click here for a program flyer.

The 2014 East Texas Garden Lecture Series of 7 monthly morning programs kicks off on February 22 with a program entitled “Easy Modern Roses – It’s More Than Knock Out; and How to Prune Your Roses”. Mr. Mark Chamblee, owner of Chamblee’s Roses will host this morning at his nursery on Hwy 69 North highlighting the newest rose varieties being bred for outstanding garden performance combined with superior disease resistance and easy maintenance. Plus, he will demonstrate pruning techniques for the various classifications and types of roses, and end with a tour of the nursery and a question and answer session. The program registration starts at 8:30 a.m. and starting time of 9:00 a.m. Cost for the program is $15, or $45 dollars for a season pass to all 7 of the 2014 Lectures.

For more information on all of the 2014 East Texas Garden Lecture Series and a flyer, go to the calendar on the Smith County Extension website – smith.agrilife.org  or call the office at (903) 590-2980.

A no-cost Texas Watershed Steward Workshop on water quality issues related to the Neches and Sabine River Basins will be held from 1 pm – 5 pm on February 17 at the Smith County Cotton Belt Building at 1517 West Front Street Tyler. The training is open to anyone interested in improving water equality in the Tyler region. Participants are encouraged to pre-register at http://tws.tamu.edu/workshops/registration/

Along with the free training, participants receive a free copy of the Texas Watershed Steward Handbook and the certificate of completion. The program also offers four continuing education units in soil and water management for certified crop advisors, four units for professional engineers and certified planners, and four continuing educational credits for certified teachers. It also offers three general continuing education units for Texas Department of Agriculture pesticide license holders, four for certified landscape architects and three for certified floodplain managers

On February 20, the first of a series of webinars (seminars delivered by Extension specialists via the web) will cover Aquaponics: Principles and Practices. The webinar will be held at the Smith County Extension office from 9:00 a.m. to noon. Registration is $20 for the entire series, or $10 per individual session. For a listing of the other 5 webinars, visit the smith.agrilife.org calendar, or call the Extension office.

The annual East Texas Commercial Fruit and Vegetable Conference is February 25, in Nacogdoches at the Nacogdoches County Civic Center. Topics for this all day conference include New Peach & Nectarine Varieties; Common Pecan Problems in East Texas; Variety Trials (Blueberry, Fig, Persimmons and Citrus) in East Texas by Dr. David Creech; Starting a Commercial Vegetable Operation; Organic Certification for Fruits and Vegetables; Alternative Ways of Marketing Your Produce via Social Media; Insecticides and Fungicides for Fruits and Vegetables; and  Laws & Regulations update. Three TDA Pesticide CEU’s will be provided. Registration is $30 (includes lunch), starting at 8:00 a.m., with the programs starting at 8:25 a.m.

For a look at other upcoming programs, check out the Smith County Extension online calendar at smith.agrilife.org  and/or the Programs page at easttexasgardening.tamu.edu

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