December 5, 2011

Holiday Plant Care and Decorating Safety Classes

The holidays are a time for decorating our homes with seasonal flowers and other fresh cut materials. So often, safety takes a second place to getting that “theme” or that certain “look” created. Many of the materials we use can dry out and become fire hazards. When we bring in fresh-cut material from the garden, there may be berries that are poisonous or the materials don’t last very long without being treated. Also, we have seasonal plants, flowers and arrangements that with the proper care can last for several weeks, rather than a couple of days.

University of Illinois Extension is offering a Holiday Plant Care and Decorating Safety program. Taught by U of I Extension horticulture educator, Martha Smith, you will learn how to take care of your poinsettia, amaryllis, holiday cactus and fresh cut arrangements. Who doesn’t enjoy the smell of fresh cut evergreens when used for decorating? But did you know that if treated with anti-desiccants, they dry out much more slowly than untreated greenery? Timely safety and decorating tips like these will also be shared.

Participants will also create their own centerpiece, using fresh greenery to take home and enjoy. Each class runs one day from 1-3 pm. There are three days and locations to choose from:

• Tuesday 12/13 at College Avenue Presbyterian Church located at 501-S College Avenue Aledo, IL 61231
• Wednesday 12/14 at the Geneseo Community Center located at 41 East North Street Geneseo, IL 61254
• Friday 12-16 at the University of Illinois Extension at 321- W. 2nd Ave Milan IL 61264

Cost is $20 for the public or $17 for current Univ. of Illinois Master Gardeners or HCE members.

To register call (309) 756-9978, or register online at