Garden Consultants: Where to Learn More About Gardening
One way to find a club is through the National Capital Area Garden Clubs (202-399-5958; gardencentral.org/ncafgc), but many local clubs aren’t members. Some homeowners associations and workplaces have clubs; the National Institutes of Health sponsors one for employees.
Organizations offering classes and lots of information about local gardening include Brookside Gardens (1800 Glenallan Ave., Wheaton; 301-962-1400; brooksidegardens.org), Green Spring Gardens (4603 Green Spring Rd., Alexandria; 703-642-5173; fairfaxcounty.gov/parks/gsgp), the National Arboretum (3501 New York Ave., NE; 202-245-2726; usna.usda.gov), and the USDA Graduate School (grad.usda.gov).
Cooperative Extension programs sponsor master-gardener programs, which answer garden and pest questions by phone and provide many other services, including plant clinics, demonstration gardens, speakers for local groups, and training to be a volunteer master gardener. Here’s how to find a program in your area:
• DC: 202-274-7166; firstname.lastname@example.org.
• Maryland: 301-590-9650; extension.umd.edu/gardening/mastergardeners/local/montgomery/index.cfm.
• Virginia: Arlington and Alexandria, 703-228-6414; Fairfax, 703-324-8556; Loudoun, 703-771-5150; Prince William, 703-792-7747; www.ext.vt.edu/resources.
Washington Gardener magazine (washingtongardener.com) features articles by local gardeners. It also has an e-newsletter and a blog and sponsors contest and other events. Subscriptions are $20.
Local garden coach Susan Harris links to a variety of regional gardening blogs at sustainable-gardening.com.