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Master gardener classes are being offered by the University of Alaska Fairbanks Cooperative Extension Service. Master Gardeners are trained volunteers who aid University of Alaska Cooperative Extension Service staff by helping people in the community better understand horticulture and their environment.

The class consists of 40 hours of instruction on different areas of horticulture and pest management. The payback of volunteer time is set at 40 hours, which equals the hours of training received.

Michele H├ębert, Tanana District agriculture and horticulture agent, will lead two sessions of classes at the University Park Building. The first session will meet Feb. 10-March 7, Tuesdays from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. and 6-9 p.m. and Saturdays from noon-3 p.m. The second session will meet April 27-May 8, weekdays from 9 a.m.-1 p.m.

Topics include basic horticulture, plant classification, soils, vegetables, fruit and berry crops, composting, lawn establishment and maintenance, plant diseases and pests, home landscaping, and more.

Classes are limited to twenty students. Registration is requested by Jan. 31. The class fee is $75 if participants agree to donate forty hours of gardening-related volunteer service in the community. The fee is $250 without the volunteer commitment. Volunteer hours must be completed within two years of completing the class.

For more information or to register, call the Tanana District Extension office at 907-474-1530 or stop by the Cooperative Extension office in the University Park Building at 1000 University Avenue.

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