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Gardening to be focus of expo

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Vegetable Garden event is Aug. 21

By Michel Northsea

For those who are unsure about just what vegetable plants grow in the cooler months, the answers can be found during the Vegetable Garden Expo, Aug 21.

The annual event is held in cooperation with the University of Florida IFAS, the Marion County Extension Service and Marion County Master Gardeners at the extension service office, 2232 N.E. Jacksonville Road.

Growing vegetables in cooler weather is one of 10 different subjects talked about during the 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. event. Other topics include information on how to enhance your garden soil, gardening with children, and using the best management practices in the garden.

Outside master gardeners will offer the opportunity to learn about composting, growing herbs, controlling pests and growing root crops – such as sweet potato, mélange and yucca as they lead hands-on, in garden demonstrations throughout the day.

Gardeners wanting to reduce their use of water will want to hear what Kathleen Patterson of Florida Yards and Neighborhoods has to say about micro-irrigation.

Bill Miranda, master gardener, will lead tours through the University of Florida IFAS, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences demonstration gardens located on the grounds.

Besides the learning opportunities offered through the seminar there are buying opportunities, too.

Vendors will offer a variety of vegetable seeds and seedlings plants for sale, plant containers, melaleuca mulch, soil amendments, potting mix, compost bins, fruit trees, micro-irrigation kits, rain barrels and other related items.

Throughout the day Master Gardeners will also be available answer questions.