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Keep Kingsport Beautiful offers free gardening series at Farmers Market

Holly Viers • May 18, 2019 at 6:00 PM

KINGSPORT — If you want to learn more about growing vegetables, beekeeping or canning, Keep Kingsport Beautiful can help.

Back for a second year, KKB’s Homegrown Gardening Series launched last weekend at the Kingsport Farmers Market. Robin Cleary, executive director of KKB, said the series will offer something for beginners and those who already have an interest in gardening.

“The Farmers Market is a great venue to do this. … Typically if people are at the Farmers Market, they’ve got an interest in fresh produce and plants and gardening, so it’s just a ready-made audience,” Cleary said. “It helps us get our program and what we do with Keep Kingsport Beautiful in front of a new audience.”

Getting started

Cleary said the gardening series began as a way for KKB to establish partnerships with other city programs. The organization already partners with Kingsport Public Works and the Kingsport Public Library, among others.

“This was a way for us to do something at the Farmers Market,” Cleary said. “It was really well-received last year, and so we definitely wanted to do it again this year and build on what we started last year.”

About the series

This year’s gardening series features four sessions, all of which are different from last year’s sessions. The first one, “Seasonal Seed Starting” with horticulturalist Roy Odom, took place last Saturday. Future sessions are listed below:

• June 8: “Vegetables 101” with master gardener Doug Hilton of the Harvest of Hope Community Garden

• July 20: “Beekeeping for Beginners” with local beekeeper Wendy Brown

• August 17: “Water Bath Canning Primer” with Rachel Dean, a Sullivan County UT extension agent

Each session is free to the public and will begin at 10 a.m. at the Farmers Market, located at 308 Clinchfield St. Sessions typically last 45 minutes to an hour, and no registration is required.

For those who can’t attend the sessions in person, KKB will livestream each one on its Facebook page, Cleary added.

“We’ve had really good response and a lot of interest,” Cleary said, “so I anticipate that will continue this year.”

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