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MU Extension offers new gardening class

Online course teaches participants to be a garden steward
Posted at 4:30 AM, May 24, 2023
and last updated 2023-05-24 11:54:09-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The University of Missouri Extension is accepting enrollees in a new garden steward program.

The five-week course covers the essentials of beginning a garden and growing produce.

The course costs $99, but people over the age of 55 who live in Platte County, Missouri, and register to be an AmeriCorps volunteer for six hours per year can take the course for free.

The course began May 18 and ends June 15, but new participants can sign up and begin anytime during the period. The course includes lessons via online sessions and face-to-face, interactive meetings.

“In [MU] Extension, we have impact. That’s our goal, to have impact. To see it, not just in the class, but to see it long term, is very rewarding,” said Tamra Reall, the Kansas City area horticulture field specialist for MU Extension, who teaches the course.

Husband and wife Tony and Connie Riddle, became master gardeners through a similar, yet longer MU Extension course.

They’re happy to know the Extension is offering this new, shorter course.

“Some people maybe don’t have the 10 or 12 weeks to dedicate to the longer program,” Tony Riddle said. “There are going to be more people with the basic knowledge to encourage them to come out and either start their own garden or work part of the master garden program here.”

The Riddles volunteer at the community garden at 18th Street and Broadway Boulevardin Kansas City, Missouri.

On Tuesday, they collected collards and kale which the garden donates to organizations like After the Harvest and Harvesters.

MU Extension has information about the new garden steward class on its website.