Italian garden founder to kick off spring gardening seminar

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Mary Menniti, who founded the Italian Garden Project in Pittsburgh, will be the featured speaker at Penn State Extension’s annual spring gardening seminar March 2.


The seminar is hosted each year by the Washington County Master Gardeners. It will be held in Trinity Middle School, on Scenic Drive, beginning with registration at 8:15 a.m. and continue to 1 p.m.


The seminar features a variety of workshops on gardening, landscaping and plant care.


Cost is $15 per person. All proceeds supports the Washington County Master Gardener Program and their community service projects.


Menniti, who lives in Sewickley, founded the Italian Garden Project to preserve Old World food and gardening traditions, many of which were taught to her by her Italian grandfather.


Her presentation includes some of the Italian-American vegetable gardens that still exist in Pittsburgh. She will provide information about using resources wisely, such as saving heirloom seeds and becoming self-reliant to create a sustainable future.


Workshops include:


• Mushrooming in Western Pennsylvania with Bonnie Davis, from the Western Pennsylvania Mushroom Club;


• Digital Photography with Jim McNutt from the Observer-Reporter;


• Gardening for Wildlife, Dr. Candy DeBerry from Washington & Jefferson College;


• Wildflowers of Pennsylvania, Dr. Mary Joy Haywood, Carlow University;


• Trees, common insects and young tree care, Scott Kilbourn, certified arborist;


• Rain Gardens, Sara Madden, Nine Mile Run Watershed Association;


• Community Supported Agriculture, Allen Matthews, director of sustainable agriculture, Chatham University.


• Cooking with Spring Vegetables, Laura Delach, Washington County Master Gardener Coordinator.


There will be gardening exhibits, soil test kits, other gardening items and plants for sale.


For more information on the seminar call Laura Delach, master gardener coordinator, at 724-228-6881.


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