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The Madison Record

Propagation class to explain garden techniques

HUNTSVILLE – Participants will learn about time- and money-saving practices at the next workshop by Master Gardeners of North Alabama.

The workshop will explain the fundamentals of propagation for multiplying plant specimens and applying those procedures to varied vegetation. The workshop is scheduled for Jan. 10, from 10 a.m. to noon at Madison County Extension Office, 819 Cook Ave. in Huntsville.

The gardeners are presenting the workshop with support from Alabama Cooperative Extension System.

“(Retail) stores will sell you a limited selection of plant species, often with a high price tag. Gardening, if you let it, can drain your bank account,” spokesperson Nareatha Studdard said. “However, various propagation methods can save you time and money while increasing your yard’s plant diversity.”

Guest speaker Marcus Garner serves as Urban Regional Extension Agent with the Alabama Cooperative Extension System’s New and Nontraditional Programs Unit. He has worked at Alabama A&M University since 2002. With expertise in agricultural science, Garner has compiled 15-plus years of professional experience with the public.

During the workshop, individuals will learn about expanding types of plants that they grow. “You will learn the in’s and out’s about propagation. Workshop topics include equipment, safety, insects, diseases, starting seeds, layering, budding, grafting and division,” Studdard said.

The workshop will explain how a home gardener can grow more than 1,000 different kinds of tomatoes, apple trees and daylilies. However, a gardener can use a different method to grow each one.

For example, one package of tomato seeds costs about the same as buying one tomato plant. Yet, the packet of seeds can produce 20 or more tomato plants, Studdard said.

An apple tree would need eight to 10 years to produce fruit from a seed. “These days, most apple trees are grafted, meaning you could be eating apples from your own tree in half that time,” Studdard said.

Many Southern gardeners are familiar with dividing daylilies to glean new plantings. “Invest in a couple of daylilies today, and, in a few years, you’ll have several plants to keep, exchange or give away,” she said.

The workshop is free, but seating is limited. To register, visit mginfo.org/workshops. 

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