WICHITA FALLS – Oklahoma and Texas are known to suffer droughts, but the current drought is certainly one for the record books, said Fred Hall, Texas AgriLife Extension Service agriculture and natural resources agent in Wichita County.
“Meteorologists and climatologists are telling us that we can expect more ‘drier’ years ahead, and when we do get rain, to expect more severe thunderstorms,” Hall said.
“With that in mind, the Wichita County Master Gardeners have sought out experts and visionaries with proven experience in growing beautiful gardens and landscapes that require less water, and asked them to share their knowledge with area gardeners.”
This program will include up-to-date information on topics that will influence the utility and beauty of any garden while using less water, he said.
The “Living Well with Less Water in Texoma 2011” conference will be held Oct. 1 at the Multi-Purpose Events Center in Wichita Falls.
The registration fee is $40 per participant if received before Sept. 1 and $55 if received during Sept. 2-16. No registrations will be accepted after Sept. 16, Hall said. The fee includes the noon meal, break refreshments and conference handout materials.
The speakers will include:
- KFDX Meteorologist Bryan Rupp, who will help gardeners understand why we are experiencing this drought and what to expect as recovery begins.
- Scott Calhoun, author of five gardening books, will explain his strategies for water-saving gardens that work in the Texas and Oklahoma regions around Wichita Falls.
- Michael Parkey, a registered landscape architect in Dallas, will share his favorite native plant list and explain how they fit into modern, water-saving designs.
- Kevin Gustavson, Oklahoma Conservation Commission project coordinator, will discuss xeriscapes and rain gardens during the luncheon program.
- Dotty Woodson, AgriLife Extension horticulture agent in Tarrant County, will help attendees understand the science and new technologies of landscape irrigation.
Attendees will qualify for five Master Gardener continuing education hours, two private pesticide applicator general continuing education hours and three Master Naturalists’ hours. Other continuing education units may be announced prior to the conference, Hall said.
There will also be a vendor show, offering participants a look at the latest items and information.
Gardeners can access more information and the registration form at http://overthegardengate.org or by calling Virginia Krebs at 940-692-3089 or by contacting the AgriLife Extension office in Wichita County at 940-716-8610.