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Get Inspiration for your gardens at Spring Series of Home Horticulture

Watering plants

(ROCK ISLAND, Ill.) As spring arrives, gardeners turn their thoughts to their home gardens. University of Illinois Extension is here to help with its annual Spring Series of Home Horticulture offerings on Mondays, April 10, 17 and 24 from 6 to 8 pm at the Holiday Inn, Rock Island, IL. Each night two experts share tips and information about a topic. Week 1: Learn about bats, and tree diversity; Week 2: creating bird habitat in your landscape, and spring bird transition; and Week 3: growing plants indoors, and new arrivals from the greenhouse to your garden. The cost to attend the entire series is $25, or you can pick or choose the weeks you want to attend for $10/night. Includes appetizers. Pre-register as space is limited. Register at

Presentation details:

Monday, April 10, 6 - 8 PM

  1. Going to Bat for Bats! Jill Schmidt Naturalist with Clinton County Conservation
    These natural insect controllers are a vital component of a healthy environment, and many bats are struggling to survive. Jill will discuss what you can do at your home and in your garden to ensure their survival.
  2. The Why and How of Tree Diversity Emily Swihart, Illinois Extension Horticulture Educator
    Trees are major components of our landscape on both a physical scale and a temporal scale. As we seek to implement best practices planting and managing our urban forest, we must begin with the most basic of questions which is what to plant. We will delve into the benefits and challenges of planting a diverse urban forest and explore a range of species that can help add variety to our landscape.

Additional Sessions:
Monday, April 17, 6 - 8 PM

  1. Landscaping: It’s for the Birds, Chris Enroth, Illinois Extension Horticulture Educator 
    Attracting birds to your backyard can go beyond setting out birdfeeders. In this session go beyond the typical foundation planting, in order to provide the three things birds need: water, shelter, and food. Learn how to utilize native or well-adapted plants to start creating a landscape that welcomes birds by providing critical pieces of habitat.
  2. Spring: A Time of Bird Transition, Jimmy Wiebler, Naturalist and Research Coordinator for Nahant Marsh Education Center
    Once the changes of spring get underway, things happen fast especially with the birds. Migration is the big news of the season, and changeover from winter to spring birds in our backyards, parks, forest, etc. will make us really take notice as we are joined by a bunch of bright new colorful birds. Jimmy will share information on some of these Spring bird beauties.

Monday, April 24, 6 - 8 PM

  • Growing Plants Indoors, Perrine West, experienced local garden and plant enthusiast
    Does your knowledge of this topic stop at how to overwinter a geranium? Perrine has grown hundreds of plants indoors and she’ll share the seven things you need to know about houseplants. She’ll touch on herbs, succulents, begonias, edible flowers, wildflowers, and shade plants. You'll also learn about the therapeutic benefits of indoor gardening that comes from the delight of getting something unusual to bloom. Whether you are trying to while away the hours of a long winter tending to plants indoors, or looking to just keep plants alive until they can go back outside, Perrine has tips and information to help you.
  • What’s New for 2023, Matt Jones, Nursery Manager, and Ethan Leader, Greenhouse Manager at Corn Crib Nursery
    What to watch for in the upcoming year from the greenhouse to the nursery. Matt and Ethan will share not only those tried and true plants, but ones that you might not be familiar with.
About Extension

Illinois Extension leads public outreach for University of Illinois by translating research into action plans that allow Illinois families, businesses, and community leaders to solve problems, make informed decisions, and adapt to changes and opportunities.