Continuing Education for Gardeners - 47 ABC - Delmarva's Choice

Continuing Education for Gardeners

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Salisbury, MD. Spring gardening is just around the corner with our 50/50 frost date in early to mid-April depending where on Delmarva you happen to garden. Therefore, Gardening Granny logic says, "Take a couple courses, make some new friends and sharpen up an attitude before the spring planting season starts."

One of the favorite places for Gardening Grannies to take gardening classes is at Longwood Gardens up in Kennett Square, PA. It's quite a hike if you garden in the southern part of the Peninsula but, if you've never been, we think you'll find it worth the trip. Longwood offers a full year of continuing education studies ranging from ornamental horticulture to landscape design plus your choice of workshops or professional courses. You can find out more about their offerings, request their 2011 course catalog and get driving directions by going to their website Some of their courses are supplemented by online materials and activities to extend and support your learning.

Classes beginning in late January/ early February include Conifers (January 20 for 6 sessions), Planting Design (February 4 for 7 sessions), Landscape Design I (February 4 for 7 sessions), Dramatic Lighting for your Landscape (February 16 for 2 sessions), Orchids for Beginners (February 26), Ideas for Impact (February 12), Performance Pruning: Small Flowering Trees (February 26), Introduction to Plant Illustration (February 28 for 6 sessions), Basic Floral Design (February 5 for 3 sessions) and Comprehensive Wedding Design (January 21 for 4 sessions)….just to name a few. Following a class, the Gardening Grannies like to round out their day by having a sumptuous lunch in the gardens at the Terrace Restaurant (their home made mushroom soup is to die for) followed by a walk around the gardens. We think that there is really not a bad time of year to take a class, visit the gardens or try something new and bring out your own hidden talents!

Another great (and inexpensive) place to take classes is at your local Extension Service. The Ocean Pines Library (11A-1P) and the Wicomico County Extension Service in Salisbury (6-8P) are currently offering Advance Training for Master Gardeners on the first Tuesday of each month. This month, Master Gardener Grannies and others learned about "Good Bugs, Bad Bugs" in an entertaining presentation from Ginny Rosenkrantz. Want to become a Master Gardener? Contact your area Extension Service for information.

Adkins Arboretum, near Ridgely in Caroline County, offers a variety of courses including Nature as Muse (February 5), Sumi-e Painting (February 6), Soup ‘n' Walk (February 19), Nature-Inspired Texture Painting (February 21) and a Garden Odyssey (February 25). Adkins Arboretum also offers the Maryland Master Naturalist Program, held Thursdays 9AM-3:30PM (February 3 through March 31).

The Maryland Master Naturalist Program is a training program for volunteers who want to learn and share knowledge of the natural world in Maryland. This program will also serve as the Arboretum's docent training. For more information contact Ginna Tiernan at

Wor-Wic Community College near Salisbury offers continuing education classes about basic floral arranging and techniques, January 26 through February 23.

We've just scratched the surface. The list of choices is long and there is truly something for everybody. Time to start thinking and then …. off your rockers and back into the classroom! If we have missed your favorite place for continuing education, e-mail us at and we'll share it with our readers.

The Gardening Grannies are a group of avid and Master Gardeners who live, love and garden on the Delmarva Peninsula.

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