La PORTE — Folks are invited to bring their “brown bag” lunch and learn a little about gardening during four sessions presented by La Porte County Master Gardeners. The four sessions will focus on aspects of gardening, including local food, attracting pollinators, landscape design and learning about Potager gardens.

At the first session in the Brown Bag Gardening Series on Wednesday, Jan. 15, a panel of local food growers will be here. According to the Master Gardeners, an important marker of a successful community is convenient access to reasonably priced fresh food. The La Porte County area is lucky enough to have many people working on that goal, the Master Gardeners said, and some of the movers and shakers are coming together for a panel discussion.

This panel will be made up of community people dedicated to growing and providing sustainable food. Members of the panel will include: Angela Rose, co-director of La Porte County Farmer’s Market; Becca Tuholski, co-owner of Tuholski Produce in La Porte County; Jason Clemons, director of The Pax Center in La Porte; and Dominique Edwards, a board member and food procurement specialist with the NWI Food Council.

This year’s panel will be offered as a two-hour Brown Bag session following the request for more time from last year’s attendees. Each speaker will have time to talk about their special focus and plans for this year, followed by Q&A time. The public is invited.

In 2015, the series won a statewide Search for Excellence award for educational service conducted by Purdue Master Gardeners.

Sessions will be held as follows:

n Wednesday, Jan. 15, Noon to 2 p.m., Why is Local Food So Important to a Community, La Porte County Extension Office, 2857 W. State Road 2, La Porte.

n Wednesday, Feb. 12, Noon to 1 p.m., Attracting Pollinators, Star Center, 22 Franklin St., Michigan City.

n Wednesday, March 11, Noon to 1 p.m., Landscape Design for People Living with Dementia, Luhr County Park, 3178 S. County Road 150 W., La Porte.

n Wednesday, April 15, Noon to 1 p.m., The Potager Garden, La Porte County Extension Office, 2857 W. State Road 2, La Porte.

Folks are invited to bring their lunch and join in for one or more sessions on these gardening topics. The fee is $5 for each session, which includes informational handouts, or $15 for all four sessions. No need to pre-register; just show up.

For more information about the sessions in the Brown Bag Gardening Series, call Purdue Extension - La Porte County at 219-324-9407. You may also download a flyer at www.extension.purdue.edu/laporte; click on the “Garden” heading at top of the web page or go to the La Porte County Master Gardener website http://www.lpmastergardener.com/.

The La Porte County Master Gardener Association is one of the Purdue Cooperative Extension Service programs and helps fulfill the state motto of “Helping Others Grow” by training volunteers to promote good gardening and horticultural practices, the Master Gardeners said. The Association accomplishes this through its volunteers conducting educational activities and projects in the community throughout the year. For more information about the Purdue Master Gardener Program or about becoming a Master Gardener, contact the La Porte County Extension office at 219-324-9407 or visit www.extension.purdue.edu/laporte and link to “Master Gardeners” under “Garden.”

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