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Gardening seminar in Amherst

The Portage County Master Gardener Volunteers will host a gardening seminar, from 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 15, 2011 at the at the Lettie Jensen Community Center in Amherst.

The cost for Garden Dreams is $30 and includes three guest speakers and lunch.

Samantha Peckham, horticulturist and mapping specialist at Olbrich Botanical Gardens, will start off the morning with a presentation entitled “From Drawing to Digging.”

Her session will focus on creating a garden space from design, budgeting money and time, buying quality plants, deciding when to call in a professional and finishing the project.

Brent Gustason will present “Groundcovers: Eco-friendly and the Mulch Alternative.” A sales representative for Midwest Groundcovers in St. Charles, Ill., Gustason has been in the horticulture industry for 25 years.

He will explain why groundcovers are a better and more economical alternative to wood mulch and what plants should be used in the Midwestern environment as groundcover.

Stan Tekiela will present “Uncommon Facts about Common Birds” in the afternoon. His talk will offer fascinating facts about some of the more unpopular birds such as the European starling and the American crow.

A naturalist, wildlife photographer and writer, Tekiela has authored more than 100 field guides, nature appreciation books and wildlife audio CDs.

The Lettie Jensen Community Center is located at 487 N. Main St., Amherst. For more information contact Linda Zick at 715-341-4941 or download the Garden Dreams registration form at: http://portage.uwex.edu. Registration deadline is Jan. 5.

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