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Lectures on the agenda

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Mt Lebanon Public Library will offer a series of gardening lectures and workshops leading up to its annual garden tour July 13.

The sixth annual Vegetable Gardening Seed-Sharing will begin at 10 a.m. Feb. 22 at the library, 16 Castle Shannon Blvd., 15228. Participants share the cost and assist in dividing seed packets of 20 or more varieties. Instruction will be provided on when and how to start seedlings. This event requires registration and is limited to 20 participants. A fee of $10 will be collected at the door. To register: call 412-736-8216 or email mbthakar@yahoo.com, leaving your name, phone number and email address. A complete list of seeds can be sent to you by email. Bring your own seeds to share as well.

At 6 p.m. Feb. 24, Penn State master gardener and local landscape designer Claire Schuchman will begin a free three-week landscape design course that continues on March 3 and 10. The course is geared to the novice and includes discussion of sustainable design, groundcovers, native plants and rain barrels or permeable pavement. Students should bring a plot plan or a survey of their properties and pictures of their gardens.

From 1:30 to 4 p.m. May 10, the Pittsburgh Rose Society and Bonnie and Art Bishop will present a free program, "More Beautiful Gardens in Italy," a tour of gardens in Lombardy, Piedmont, Tuscany and Veneto.

The library will host its annual Garden Party in the library courtyard July 12 and Garden Tour July 13. The theme is "Enchanted Gardens" and eight gardens will be featured.

For information, call the library at 412-531-1912 or email dhmckibben@hotmail.com.

Landscape symposium

The annual Garden & Landscape Symposium of Western Pennsylvania will run from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. April 12 at the Hillman Center for the Performing Arts in Fox Chapel.

The experts who will speak:

• Michael A. Dirr, author and legend in the horticultural community, will discuss "In Praise of Noble Trees" and "New Flowering and Evergreen Shrubs."

• Maryann Frazier, Penn State entomology expert, will discuss declining pollinator populations and how gardeners and landscapers can improve habitats.

• Jeff Gillman, horticulture instructor at Central Piedmont Community College in Charlotte, N.C., will present "The Truth About Organic Gardening: Benefits, Drawbacks and the Bottom Line."

• Sinclair Adam, Penn State Extension educator, will give a rundown on "New Perennials for 2104: Plants of Promise for American Growers and Gardens."

In conjunction with the symposium, a free Garden Marketplace will be held from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. It will be open to symposium participants and the public.

The fee is $105 before March 1 and $120 after. Breakfast and lunch are included. For information or to register: http://extension.psu.edu/garden-landscape-symposium or 412-473-2540.

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