By KEVIN WALKER
LANSING, Mich. — Michigan State University extension is hosting two “smart gardener” events in the state. Gretchen Voyle, an extension educator based in Livingston County, will be giving a talk at these events, as will other experts.
The smart gardener program has been around for a while, Voyle said, but this year extension decided to promote the program more aggressively than usual.
“What we need to do is get people concentrated on educating themselves,” she said. “There are lots of questions because people just don’t know … a lot of times people learn about growing things, but not about pests and diseases.
“We’re just trying to raise people’s IQs about gardening. There’s a whole bunch of educational things going on. The idea is, we’re trying to create a better community.”
Voyle added a big part of smart gardening is soil testing, and MSU has a website for that purpose, at www.msusoiltest.com
The gardening shows – which will include taped presentations, tip sheets and videos, as well as live talks – will take place at the Novi Cottage and Lakefront Living Show Feb. 21-24 at the Suburban Collection Showplace in Novi, and the West Michigan Home and Garden Show Feb. 28-March 3 at DeVos Place in Grand Rapids.
Free seminars and informational booths will provide visitors the chance to ask experts from extension any and all gardening questions. To see more, visit www.migarden.msu.edu