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The Madison Record

Workshop to explain square-foot gardening

HUNTSVILLE – The Master Gardeners of North Alabama organization is sponsoring a workshop in March to share facts about square-foot gardening

Workshop hours will run from 10 a.m. to noon at A&M’s Agribition Center, 4925 Moores Mill Road in Huntsville. The workshop is free; however, guests do need to register at form.jotform.com/80346547784164.

Mike Harrison will discuss details about square-foot gardening. Harrison holds certification with the Square-Foot Gardening Foundation and has vast experience with this practice.

“This class also will teach you about adding vertical elements, like trellises, to square-foot gardens, root crops and seed spacing tips and tricks,” Master Gardener Publicist Sue Khoury said. “Finally, Mike and students from Hampton Cove Middle School will walk the class through a sample square-foot garden plan.”

Square-foot gardening offers an alternative to inefficient, back-breaking work in a backyard garden. “It’s pretty easy to get started,” Khoury said.

Square-foot gardening has several benefits:

* Eliminates continual amending existing soil for better nutrients and composition.

* Uses 80 percent less space, 90 percent less water and 95 percent fewer seeds.

* No need for fertilizers, pesticides or herbicides.

* No need to thin young plants.

* Garden with trowels — or just your hands — with no need for heavy-duty tools.

* Start gardening work in any season.

* Enjoy up to five times more yield in harvests.

Many Master Gardeners have succeeded in implementing SFG methods at their personal gardens, schools and public spaces. “If you use the recommended soil composition, you’ll almost hear your plants relaxing and becoming more prolific,” Khoury said.

Harrison learned to love gardening from his family, who used the traditional row-gardening method. He was introduced to Mel Bartholomew’s method of square-foot gardening and was certified as a square-foot gardening instructor in 2011.

In 2017, Harrison was voted Middle School Volunteer of the Year for Huntsville City Schools.

For more information, visit mginfo.org or Facebook/mgofna.

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