Dig information on the dirty aspects of gardening

By Mary Fran McClure
WSU Chelan/Douglas County Master Gardener

Weeding the garden.
Splendid gardens need some tender loving care at times. WSU Master Gardener Intern Lyndsey Hilden is seen here taking on weeding chores in the Community Education Garden along Western Avenue in Wenatchee. – Provided photo/Mary Fran McClure
Mary Fran McClure
Mary Fran McClure – WSU Extension Chelan/Douglas County Master Gardener – photo by Don Seabrook, Wenatchee World

Gardening is not all sunshine and flowers as any realistic gardener knows.

Gardening is dirty work — that is the title of the next Third Saturday in the Garden event scheduled for Saturday, May 18 at the Community Education Garden at the northwest corner of Western and Springwater avenues. The free event, presented by WSU-Chelan-Douglas Master Gardeners, will take place from 10 a.m. to noon.

Learn how to identify and cope with lawn weeds and the important aspects of IPM (integrated pest management) from two top-notch speakers.

For people bothered by bindweed, peeved by purslane and stressed by spurge,

Julie Sanderson, coordinator of the Chelan County Noxious Weed Control Board, will share tips on manual control rather than using chemicals.

Sanderson says common weeds of lawns and gardens will be the focus of her talk.

“Participants are welcome to bring a weed sample for identification,” she said. “I will also have examples of some useful tools for weed removal.”

Take photos of those odd-looking weeds popping up in your lawn so they can be identified, and you can take home information on eradication of your problem weeds.

The second subject at the event is Integrated Pest Management (IPM), the broad-based approach for using the least damaging and most environmentally friendly practices for pest control.

Dale Whaley, a WSU Extension agronomy educator based in Waterville, will share information on both chemical and non-chemical practices to achieve your goal of controlling pests, mindful of using the most environmentally friendly ways. He will also talk about the importance of reading and then actually following information on pesticide labels.

Whaley is great at answering questions and helping the audience understand healthy and practical gardening practices.

An on-site Master Gardener plant clinic is always popular at the Third Saturday events. Spring means lots of changes are happening in our gardens, some of them of the questionable type. Bring your gardening questions or, better yet, photos or an actual stem or piece showing your plant problem or insects (in a jar) for identification.

A Master Gardener Foundation sales table always has an interesting array of helpful garden-related items for sale at reasonable prices. Proceeds go to support the WSU Chelan-Douglas Master Gardener Program. Among the items available for purchase are sharpening tools, books, garden gloves and kid-friendly items.

For more information, contact WSU Extension at (509) 667-6540 between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 8 a.m. to noon on Fridays.

A WSU Chelan and Douglas County Master Gardener column appears weekly in The Wenatchee World. To learn more, visit bit.ly/MGchelandouglas or call (509) 667-6540.