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Session to run from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, April 21, at the Happy Valley Library

In celebration of Earth Day, Clackamas County Water Environment Services (WES), along with partners Northwest Center for Alternatives to Pesticides (NCAP) and the Oregon State University Extension Service, is offering "What in Carnation? A How-To Workshop for Organic Gardens and Landscapes."

PHOTO COURTESY: NCAP - Attendees learn about pollinators, pollinator gardens and native bees at a recent Northwest Center for Alternatives to Pesticides joint workshop with the city of Wilsonville."WES encourages property owners, residents and businesses to minimize or eliminate pesticide and herbicide use in their landscaping in order to protect water quality," said Gail Shaloum, WES' Watershed Protection Program's technical services coordinator.

The workshop will offer pesticide-free approaches to gardening and landscaping and will cover practical steps to promote healthy soil, organic care for lawns, landscape beds and gardens, and pesticide-free methods to handle azalea lace bug, aphids, rose black spot, spotted wing drosophila, and other common challenges.

A nonprofit dedicated to ecologically sound alternatives to pesticides is hoping that more area homeowners will commit to organic management techniques for lawn and garden care. Thousands of property owners use pesticides on their yards each week, said Sharon Selvaggio, the Healthy Wildlife and Water Program director for NCAP.

"It adds up to enough chemical runoff to harm fish, bees and even children and pets," Selvaggio said.

Weston Miller, who leads OSU Extension's Master Gardener Program in Clackamas County, will teach at the workshop, which also will feature interactive pest management problem-solving scenarios, demonstrations and new resources for home pest management.

The Clackamas River is the drinking water source for over 300,000 people. Using ecologically sensitive techniques protects drinking water from chemicals that can pollute groundwater and surface water runoff that enters local rivers and streams.

This free workshop was made possible through a WES RiverHealth Stewardship Program grant to support watershed restoration, education and stewardship activities.

The session will run from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, April 21, at the Happy Valley Library, 13793 S.E. Sieben Park Way. Preregistration is required due to limited space at pesticide.org/what_in_carnation or by calling 503-704-0327.

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