Outdoor briefs for week of Jan. 4

Master Gardener class coming to Brown County

Brown County will host a Master Gardener course this spring at a greatly reduced rate.

Offered by the Purdue Extension office, the Master Gardener program provides a framework for participants to increase their knowledge on a wide variety of horticultural subjects.

In turn, participants volunteer and help others grow by sharing knowledge while providing leadership and service in educational gardening activities in their communities.

Topics covered in this 13-week course include soils and plant nutrition, plant science, plant disease diagnosis/control, insect pest diagnosis/control, weed identification/control, pesticide safety/pesticide alternatives, woody ornamentals, vegetables, herbaceous ornamentals, home lawns and animal pests.

Classes are taught by Purdue specialists and local experts and will meet Wednesdays from 6 to 9 p.m. beginning Feb. 1 and concluding March 29 at the Brown County fairgrounds.

Purdue Master Gardener certifications usually cost between $100 and $160, but due to available funding, this year the cost will be $50.

Space is limited to 20 participants. To reserve a space, call the Brown County Purdue Extension office at 812-988-5435.

Grant to help fund native plantings, invasive removals

Brown County Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) can help area landowners find grant money to remove invasive species and plant native ones.

The Clean Water Indiana Grant: Remove, Replant and Restore will fund projects which remove invasive plants that pose a serious threat to the biodiversity of Indiana’s forested and riparian ecosystems; and replant and restore the site with appropriate native species that accomplish the goals and objectives of each landowner.

SWCD staff will provide technical assistance to each interested landowner by writing a detailed Landowner Invasive Plant Assessment.

Applications will be accepted year-round. They will be ranked and approved by SWCD staff and their board of supervisors on a quarterly basis for each year of CWI funding (2017 to 2019).

Reimbursements will cover 75 percent of the landowner’s receipts, not to exceed the per-acre rate for invasive species removal and $500 for native planting.

For more information, call Brown County SWCD at 812-988-2211 or email brown@iaswcd.org.