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Fall in love with WSU's Kennewick Garden Fest in October

Learn how to winterize your pond and roses, create stepping stones or superlight planters, divide perennials or plant bulbs for spring color at the Fall Garden Fest on Oct. 4.

The daylong event is a series of classes on fall garden chores presented by Washington State University Extension Master Gardeners. It'll be held in Kennewick at the Master Garden Demonstration Garden, 1500 S. Union St., and at the Grange Hall next door.

Alex Job of Job's Nursery outside Pasco is the keynote speaker. He'll be talking about some of his favorite trees for the garden and fall color.

"I plan to show them some fun trees to consider for their yards. Trees that pique my interest like the Pee Gee Hydrangea," Job said.

The Pee Gee, which can be a small tree or bush, has a long bloom season starting with white flowers in July going to pink in the fall as they dry, Job said.

The leaves also add to the show, going bronzy in the fall.

Two other of Job's favorites are the bald cypress, a deciduous conifer that goes rusty orange in the fall, and the Oregon green pine.

"The pine isn't much on fall color," Job said, "but the shape is neat and it's not so large as some, about 20 feet high by 10 to 15 feet across."

When you're talking about fall color, you're mainly talking leaves, he said.

For those, Job likes the Scarlet oak, which turns a rusty red. But it's large, spreading about 50 feet across at maturity.

Two trees with good fall color that are more yard-friendly are the October Glory maple, which turns a red orange in late October, and the little linden which goes a golden yellow, he said.

Job is part of the fourth generation of his family, and along with brother Arthur they help run the retail nursery outside Pasco. Owners are their parents, Kathy and Duane Job.

Following Job's talk, Extension Service horticulturist Marianne Ophardt will discuss how to plant trees and shrubs. After a lunch break there will be a series of short workshops out in the garden.

Cost to attend the Fall Garden Fest is $15 per person. Make checks out to BF Master Gardener Foundation.

The registration deadline is Sept. 24.

Registration brochures are available at the WSU Extension office in Kennewick, 5600-E W. Canal Drive; or online at http://benton-franklin.wsu.edu/garden/events.htm.

Three Rivers Expresso & Cafe will take orders for box lunches, including a beverage, at check-in. Cost is $7.50. Or bring your own sack lunch.

The morning class schedule is:

8:45 a.m. -- Check in

9-10 a.m. -- Favorite Trees for Fall Color

10:30-noon -- Staying Alive, Planting Trees and Shrubs Correctly

Noon-1 p.m. -- Lunch break

12:30-1 p.m. -- Master Gardeners will give tours of the Demonstration Garden

There will be 12 classes offered after lunch in four sessions. These classes will all be outdoors in the Demonstration Garden so be sure to dress for the weather.

Choose from:

1-1:30 p.m. -- Fall Rose Care; Ornamental Grasses; Dividing Perennials; Stepping Stone Leaf Prints.

1:30-2 p.m. -- Dividing Perennials; The Basics of Planting Fall Bulbs; Winterizing Your Pond; Making Hypertufa Planters.

2-2:30 p.m. -- Fall Rose Care; Bottle Gourd Harvesting; the Basics of Planting Fall Bulbs; Herbal Vinegars.

2:30-3 p.m. -- Stepping Stone Leaf Prints; Brick Pillar Plant Stands; Making Hypertufa Planters.

Take a lawn chair if you prefer to sit during the outdoor classes.

For more information on a class or a registration form, call 735-3551. The facilities are handicapped accessible.

* Loretto J. Hulse: 582-1513; lhulse@tricityherald.com.

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