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Classes help gardeners get ready for spring
by JENNIFFER WARDELL
Mar 26, 2014 | 826 views | 0 0 comments | 16 16 recommendations | email to a friend | print
A HIGH TUNNEL GREENHOUSE can give plants an early start.                         Courtesy photo
A HIGH TUNNEL GREENHOUSE can give plants an early start. Courtesy photo
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KAYSVILLE - A little training makes everything easier, including gardening. 

The USU Botanical Center is ready to help growers of all kinds get a jump-start on the season with their High Tunnel Building Workshop, set for March 28 at 10 a.m., and a series of landscape design classes starting April 2. 

The workshop, which will be held at the center, will walk students through the process of building their own high tunnel. The constructions, which serve a similar function to a greenhouse but cost much less, allow gardeners to plant earlier in the season than they could without the tunnel.

“It’s great for backyard hobbyists and growers looking to produce vegetables for farmer’s markets,” said Britney Hunter, assistant professor in Horticulture at the USU extension. “The biggest benefit is getting a head start on spring.” 

A partially built 42-foot by 14-foot tunnel will be on hand during the workshop as a visual aid, and participants will be on hand to watch it get finished. Tunnels of that size can accommodate several different types of fruits and vegetables, including raspberries, tomatoes, peppers and spinach. 

“With our weather, it helps you get a good harvest before the ground freezes,” said Hunter. “And if you’re taking the produce to market, you can sell it for more if you have it early.”

Though the class itself only costs $19 for the general public, Hunter estimates that the materials for building your own high tunnel will cost about $500. The biggest cost is the plastic used to cover the framework, though it’s not an expense you’ll have to account for every year. 

“It lasts up to four years, but then you have to replace it,” she said.  

The five-part Landscape Design Series, held up at the Ogden Botanical Gardens, will walk gardeners through the process of designing, drawing and selecting the plants for their landscape plan. In addition, course instructors will privately review your plan on the last day of class and offer suggestions. 

For prices, registration and more information, visit usubotanicalcenter.org and click on the “Events” column on the right-hand side of the page. 

 
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