Professional Grounds Conference slated for Jan. 23 in Belton

Conference to feature concurrent pesticide applicator, landscape irrigator tracks

BELTON — The 28th annual Professional Grounds Conference will be held Jan. 23 at the Bell County Expo Center, 301 Texas 121 Loop in Belton, said conference coordinators.

Home landscape plants that conserve water

A Professional Grounds Conference with pesticide applicator and landscape irrigation tracts for continuing education units will be held Jan. 23 at the Bell County Expo Center in Belton. ( Texas A$M AgriLife Extension Service photo)

Conference registration begins at 7:30 a.m., with programs starting at 8 a.m.

“New for 2014 is the Landscape Irrigator CEU Program that will take place concurrently with the pesticide applicator track,” said Fred Hall, AgriLife Extension agent for Williamson County.

Hall said six continuing education units will be offered for licensed irrigators attending that program track. Presenters and topics will include:

– Jerry Lewis, Sundance Irrigation, Keller. The state of water in Texas.

– Dr. Charles Swanson, AgriLife Extension program specialist, biological and agricultural engineering, College Station. Renewable energy pumping systems for landscape irrigation.

– Dr. Guy Fipps, AgriLife Extension agricultural engineer, College Station. Realities of managing drip irrigation.

Sessions for the landscape irrigator track will conclude at 3:30 p.m. The cost for this program is $100 if preregistered or $125 at the door.

The pesticide applicator track of the conference will offer five Texas Department of Agriculture and structural continuing education units, plus six Texas Nursery and Landscape Association continuing education units, Hall said.

The presenters and topics for this track include:

–Mack Bostick, Winfield Solutions, Schertz. Drift management.

– Dr. Mengmeng Gu, AgriLife Extension ornamental horticulturist, College Station. Earth-Kind landscaping.

– Dr. Casey Reynolds, AgriLife Extension turfgrass specialist, College Station. Turf issues

– Dr. Don Renchie, AgriLife Extension program specialist, environmental and agricultural safety, College Station. Laws and regulations.

– Greg David, TreeConsult, Muenster. Thirty-seven mistakes we make with trees.

The pesticide track will conclude at 4 p.m. The cost of this track for each Texas Department of Agriculture and Texas Nursery and Landscape Association license-holder participant will be $40 if preregistered or $50 on site.

Lunch is included in conference registration and the deadline for registration is Jan. 13.

To preregister, go to http://williamson.agrilife.org and use the Professional Grounds Conference link on the home page. Print out and complete the registration form and mail to: Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, 3151 S.E. Inner Loop, Suite A, Georgetown, TX 78626, Attention: Professional Grounds Conference. Make check payable to: Williamson County Demonstration Fund.

“In keeping with past tradition, we will have a trade show for the 2014 conference,” Hall said. “This is an excellent opportunity for professionals in the turf and ornamental landscape management industry in Texas to find out about new technologies.”

For more information, contact the AgriLife Extension office in Williamson County at 512-943-3300.

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