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Master Gardener class opens to Franklin County residents

Every year the Alabama Cooperative Extension System hosts a Master Gardener Class series for Franklin, Colbert and Lauderdale Counties, and it is right around the corner. Jan. 22 at the Lauderdale County Extension Office, agent Taylor Reeder will host the orientation for the series at 8:30 a.m.

“The class is open to anybody in the three counties,” Reeder said.

The classes will continue every Tuesday from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. until the end of April. The Lauderdale Extension Office is located at 802 Veterans Dr. in Florence.

Reeder said the Jan. 22 class will serve as the orientation; attendance of the orientation does not commit anyone to the full series. There is a $150 fee to take the series of classes, which goes toward materials, a handbook and a mandatory background check.

“Our hope is that once someone has completed the Master Gardener class, they will then go out into their community as a volunteer and host programs,” Reeder said, explaining the purpose of the background check.

The series will cover a wide range of horticulture topics, such as soils, vegetable production, fruits, plant propagation and wildlife. There will be speakers from Auburn and all across the state, as well as Reeder, to lead the class.

Reeder said the class is appropriate for beginners through advanced gardeners. “We teach for everybody,” she said. It will be a mixture of a lecture-style classroom and hands-on activities with take-home items. “I find it’s more fun and easier for people to learn if they’re being hands-on with the material.”

Applications for the class can be picked up at the Franklin County Extension Office in the courthouse or can be found online and either mailed to the Lauderdale County Extension Office or emailed to Reeder at