Gardening lessons offered

Published 10:01 pm Wednesday, July 25, 2018

Healthy Suffolk is partnering with Suffolk Parks and Recreation for a free downtown gardening workshop this August that’s now accepting registrants.

The workshop will be held from 9 a.m. to noon Aug. 18 at the East Suffolk Recreation Center, 138 S. Sixth St. There will be a seminar each hour on topics such as getting started in gardening, cooking from your garden, pest control and more.

There will be hands-on exercises with two community gardens at the rec center. One of the gardens is filled with vegetables and herbs needed for a good stir fry and the other with flowers best suited for attracting pollinators, according to Healthy Suffolk Garden Coordinator Shelley Barlow.

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David Langston, director of the Tidewater Agricultural Research and Extension Center on Holland Road, and local extension agents are expected to lead seminars at the workshop.

“The idea is to encourage people to do a little gardening of their own,” Barlow said. “It’s very much an intro to gardening, but there will also be something there for experienced gardeners too.”

Up to 50 people may register for the workshop through Aug. 11. Registration is not required but strongly encouraged, as those that register ahead of time will be eligible for cookbooks, gardening essentials and other prizes.

There’s also a photo contest on the “Healthy Suffolk Digs” Facebook page through Aug. 17. Beautiful garden pictures with flowers, vegetables, pets and other pleasantries should be posted with #mygardendigs. The top three photos will be judged based on the number of likes they receive, and the winners will get their garden prizes at the workshop.

“I take pictures of my garden almost every day when I’m out there, and I think many other gardeners do that, too,” Barlow said. “Whatever they think is the best shot of what’s going on in the garden.”