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Cooperative Extension offering ‘Grow Your Own’ classes

The Pahrump Chamber of Commerce welcomed a new member into its fold.

The agency hosted a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Friday for officials from the University of Nevada Cooperative Extension in Pahrump.

Chamber event Coordinator Vicky Hilling said she’s pleased to have an additional member at the chamber.

“It’s nice to see that they acquired some funding and they have more people on staff,” she said. “If anyone has questions regarding what to plant out here in this nice hot desert, they should come down and talk to these wonderful people.”

The cooperative extension’s decision to join the chamber comes at a time where spring gardening classes are set to get underway at the facility.

The extension is offering eight back-to-basics courses, entitled “Grow Your Own, Nevada,” beginning next month.

Cooperative extension Horticulture Specialist Heidi Kratsch said the statewide courses will help Southern Nevadans get on a path to more sustainable, local, healthy living by growing more of their own food.

“Gardening in Nevada is a challenge,” Kratsch said. “But you can learn to deal with our harsh climate and poor soils by building on the success of others. ‘Grow Your Own’ educators are experienced gardeners and growers and are excited to share what they know with the community.”

The series of workshops are scheduled to run from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., Tuesdays and Thursdays, from April 4 through April 27.

The workshops will provide gardeners and those interested in growing healthy foods with a back-to-the-basics guide to producing bountiful harvests in Nevada.

“Anyone can become a better gardener by attending these classes,” Kratsch said. “From the beginner to the advanced gardener, everyone can benefit from the Grow Your Own class.”

Master Gardener Coordinator Cherry McCormick said the topics will range from starting plants from seeds or cuttings on April 4, to successful berry growing basics, on April 27.

Class fees are $10 per person, per class, or $50 for the entire course.

The cost covers class supplies, materials and refreshments.

McCormick also noted the benefits of both gardening and homegrown fruits and produce.

“Gardening for 45 minutes burns as many calories as 30 minutes of aerobic exercise,” she said. “Preschool children served homegrown produce are more than twice as likely to eat five servings of fruits and vegetables a day as children who rarely eat homegrown produce.”

For additional information on the classes, contact McCormick at 775- 727-5532.

Contact reporter Selwyn Harris at sharris@pvtimes.com. On Twitter: @pvtimes

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