Cabbage Plant

Class Schedule

NEW ADDITION:  Presentations by this year's 'Principal Speakers' will be available by recording from March 14 to April 15 for your viewing in case you miss the live presentations.  A link will be sent to all  registrants.

All presentations listed below, given by regional gardening experts, will be available to view on your own schedule from March 14 to April 15, and will cover many topics essential to developing your own sustainable garden.  Registrants to this event will be emailed a link to access the presentations.  

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BEGINNING GARDENING Holistic Gardening: Growing a Community Through Gardening

A story of transforming unused spaces to build relationships and make homegrown food accessible by creating empty and unused green or lawn spaces, both personal and community, into edible gardens.

Rebecca Robertson

BIO: Rebecca Robertson has a Bachelor of Science degree in Zoology with a focus in animal behavior, and has dedicated her career to the care of animals and their people. She discovered her love of gardening during a difficult time, and in turn now runs a website titled “Becca Grows Stuff”. Rebecca loves to help all things grow and strives to show people that sustainability is attainable, approachable and accessible.


EXPERIENCED GARDENING Drip Irrigation for the Yard and Garden 

Drip irrigation systems save water and can be set up to save time and energy!  We will discuss drip irrigation system components and function for design, installation, and maintenance.  

Troy Peters, PhD

BIO: Dr. Peters is a Professor of Biological Systems Engineering  and an extension irrigation specialist at Washington State University.  He is located at the Irrigated Agriculture Research and Extension Center in Prosser, WA where he has been for 16 years.  He is also a licensed professional agricultural engineer. 

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BEGINNING GARDENING  Caring for our Water Supply: How Gardening Practices Affect our Sole Source of Water, the Aquifer

In this class you will learn about the aquifer beneath us, which is the sole-source of drinking water for the Spokane Region, and some important gardening practices to protect and preserve our most valuable resource.  

Mark Stiltz

BIO: I have devoted my life to the protection of our most valuable resources: Water. During my 37-year career at Spokane County, I managed 60+ projects to remove sewage septic tanks operating in the Spokane Valley over the Spokane-Rathdrum Prairie Aquifer, the sole source of drinking water for this community.  Even as a WSU Master Gardener from 2004 to 2020, my focus has been about teaching gardening practices that protect the quality and conserve the quantity of our drinking water. 

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EXPERIENCED GARDENING  Simple Techniques for Native Plant Propagation

Don’t be held hostage by unsatisfactory nursery offerings! This presentation will provide you with a simple, straightforward approach to growing your own native perennial plants.

Robin O'Quinn, PhD

BIO: I am an avid, lifelong gardener and botanist. Before I became a biology professor I worked as a professional gardener in San Francisco. My research specialty is plant systematics (i.e., evolution, taxonomy, morphology and biogeography), however most recently I’ve been interested in better understanding how to propagate perennial native plants for restoration purposes.

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BEGINNING GARDENING  Don’t be Afraid of Pruning

Learn the basics of pruning ornamental shrubs and trees for a more natural looking landscape that is more resilient, too!

Tim Kohlhauff

BIO: Tim serves as the Urban Horticulture Coordinator for Washington State University’s Spokane County Extension. He is the head of the Spokane County Master Gardener volunteer program, an instructor at Spokane Community College, and a certified arborist. 


GENERAL GARDENING TOPIC  Finding Resiliency in Nature

The inherent human-nature connection is one of our strongest forces of strength and inspiration. The delicate balance between body, mind & spirit with the natural world leads to a resiliency that can provide the support we need during adversity.

Cathi Lamoreux


EXPERIENCED GARDENING Habitat for Everyone: A Few Easy Techniques

Complexity drives habitat quality for most wildlife species. When managing small landscapes (wood lots or backyard gardens), we can provide opportunities for a myriad of species to share our space. This talk will address these ideas with a few concrete suggestions we can all apply at home.  

Ken Bevis

BIO:Ken Bevis is the Stewardship Biologist for the Washington Department of Natural Resource (DNR) Small Forest Landowner office. Ken is a lifelong hiker, hunter, fisherman, skier, bird watcher and avid naturalist. He has held a variety of positions in natural resource management working for the Forest Service, Yakama Indian Nation, Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (15 years) and now, DNR. Ken has a BS in Forestry and Wildlife from Virginia Tech (1979), and a Masters of Biology from Central Washington University (1994), where he studied Cavity Nesting Birds in three eastern Washington forest types. He now helps landowners learn how to manage small private forest lands for wildlife on their property. He makes frequent presentations for WSU and others, writes for various venues and is a singer/songwriter as well.

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EXPERIENCED GARDENING Orchard Mason Bees:  Our Native Pollinators

Learn how to develop a viable population of backyard orchard mason bees and maintain that population for year to year.

James Ulrich

BIO: Jim Ullrich is a retired Naval Officer. After his 21-year Naval career, he founded Wild Birds Unlimited of Gig Harbor, WA and owned the retail store for 25 years. After selling the store, he bought Knox Cellars Mason Bees in 2017. His family helps run and market Orchard Mason Bee products both retail and wholesale on their website, He is active in WA State Audubon, scouting, and other philanthropic activities.

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BEGINNING GARDENING  Turning Your Spoils into Soil:  The Basics of Home Composting

In this session you will learn the basics of composting at home to not only manage the organic waste you generate, but how to sustainably manage the health and productivity of your soil.

Kris Major

BIO:Kris is the Education Coordinator for the City of Spokane’s Solid Waste Department. She works with all ages and audiences teaching about waste reduction, recycling, re-use, and composting. Kris also facilitates the Master Composter/Recycler (MC/R) program in Spokane County.

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GENERAL GARDENING TOPIC  Trees are the longest-lived plants in our gardens and landscapes. This presentation will explore the value and relevance of trees to the planet and our daily lives today and into the future

Ben Thompson

BIO: Ben Thompson manages the Washington State Department of Natural Resources’ Urban & Community Forestry Program and has been an ISA Certified Arborist since 1999. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Urban and Community Forestry and a Master’s in Forest Resources and Conservation and has worked extensively with Washington’s trees and communities for over 12 years. 

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EXPERIENCED GARDENING  Supporting Miniature Wildlife in the Garden: Taking Pollinator Habitat Conservation to the Next Level

In this fun presentation, Mace Vaughan will take the fundamental principles of pollinator conservation (forage and nest sites), and dig deeper into the natural history of the native bees in your garden and how little tricks and trained eyes will help you see and do more in your garden.

Mace Vaughan

BIO: Mace Vaughan serves as the Xerces Society’s Pollinator and Ag Biodiversity Conservation Program Co-Director. He and his team have built this effort into the world’s largest pollinator conservation program, with Xerces staff helping farmers and homeowners to create and protect over 1 million acres of pollinator habitat across the country.


GENERAL GARDENING TOPIC  Rain Gardens:  How We Mimic Healthy Forests

Rain gardens and other sustainable solutions to capture and filter stormwater.

Zsofia Paster

BIO: Cathi is a retired Speech Language Pathologist and current educator with Eldergrow, a company that provides indoor gardening experiences for residents of skilled nursing and memory care communities. She has a certificate in Horticultural Therapy. She has been a Master Gardener since 2008. She is past president of the Master Gardener Foundation of Spokane County.

BIO:  Zsofia Pasztor is one of the founders and executive co-directors of the non-profit organization Farmer Frog.  She teaches restoration horticulture, urban agriculture, aquaponics, and low impact development at several local colleges and abroad. 

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