On Thursday, Chattahoochee Technical College will team up with the Bartow County Cooperative Extension Office to offer the Northwest Georgia Green Industry & Gardening Symposium.
“The gardening symposium is now in its third year hosted by Chattahoochee Technical College in partnership with Bartow County Extension Service,” said Rex Bishop, vice president for Economic Development for CTC. “It was started to give both the professional and avid gardener updates on topics relevant to the green industry. The topics are mostly geared to the professional, but of course provides accurate and timely information to the avid gardener as well. The symposium provides networking opportunities and opportunities for those in the industry to receive recertification credits towards their licenses.“With Chattahoochee Technical College having an associate degree in horticulture, it is a natural tie in for us to offer other programs in the green industry. Along with the symposium, the college has their award winning horticulture program and also offers customized training to local landscape companies in our area. We want to meet the needs of the local businesses and industries we serve, and this is just another way to do that.”He continued, “The gardening symposium offers a great educational experience for all those that attend. Providing a wealth of knowledge packed into one day. It is a can’t-miss event. There will also be on hand some local vendors showing their gardening supplies.”Spanning from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., the event will be held at CTC’s North Metro Campus, Building D, Room 400, at 5198 Ross Road in Acworth.“Each year we feature a variety of speakers and topics based on current trends in landscaping and gardening,” Bartow County Extension Coordinator Paul Pugliese said. “This year, I will be presenting the topic ‘Turfgrass Integrated Pest Management Strategies.’ The most common turfgrass questions we get from commercial landscapers as well as home gardeners revolve around how to deal with weeds, insects and diseases. This presentation will focus on the underlying causes of these pest problems and how best to prevent them through proper turfgrass management. Participants will learn how to maintain a healthy, stress-free lawn with improved tolerance and resilience to insects, disease and weed competition.“The symposium is geared toward any home gardener as well as commercial landscapers and arborists. This is a hybrid program that provides practical, applied information that can be used by consumers as well as commercial businesses. Also, the networking lunch and opportunity to visit with exhibitors allows consumers to locate professional services and connect with local businesses that they might not have the time to find on their own.”Along with Pugliese’s presentation at 2:15 p.m., the Northwest Georgia Green Industry & Gardening Symposium will feature the following speakers — Mary Carol Sheffield, UGA Extension coordinator/Paulding County, “Tree Scene Investigation” from 8:30 to 9:30 a.m.; Rolando Orellana, UGA Extension agent/Cobb County, “Landscape Safety Tips” from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m.; Dr. John Ruter, UGA professor of horticulture and UGA Trial Gardens director, “Trials, Tribulations and a Thuja or Two!” from 10:45 to 11:45 a.m.; and Dr. Will Hudson, UGA professor/Extension entomologist, “Protecting Bees & Pollinators from Pesticides” from 1:15 to 2:15 p.m.The event will launch the Bartow County Master Gardener Extension Volunteers’ 2016 Bartow Lawn & Garden Seminar series. The seminars also will include “Oh Deer!” on March 8 from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m.; “Georgia Home Grown Tomatoes” April 12 from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m.; “Native Plants in the Landscape” May 10 from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m.; “Top Food & Farming Myths” June 14 from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m.; “Planting Food for Wildlife” Aug. 9 from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m.; and “Holiday Wreath Making Workshop” Nov. 19 from 9 to 11 a.m. or 1 to 3 p.m. Following the gardening symposium, the remainder of the Bartow Lawn & Garden Seminar series will be conducted in the Olin Tatum Agricultural Building’s Stiles Auditorium at 320 W. Cherokee Ave. in Cartersville.“The symposium is our first consumer education event of the year and officially kicks off our annual Bartow Lawn & Garden Seminar series,” Pugliese said. “This seminar series has been formally hosted and coordinated by our Master Gardener Extension Volunteers since 2012. The primary purpose of this educational series is to increase awareness of the latest research, information and services offered by the University of Georgia Extension to our local community.“Most farm families and agribusinesses have been using their local Extension office since 1914. However, many people today are two or three generations removed from farming and don’t realize that the services and educational programs that we offer can also benefit them as home gardeners and consumers.”To sign up for Thursday’s gardening symposium, call 770-528-4550 or visit http://t.uga.edu/1ZL. The $35 registration fee also covers a networking lunch.For more information about the Bartow Lawn & Garden Seminar series, visit http://www.caes.uga.edu/extension/bartow or call 770-387-5142.