Nature and Outdoor Living Classes

301   Bench Grafting Apples        Instructors: Robert and Jeremiah Fearnley

Bench grafting is not magic or voodoo. Come learn to graft a scion onto a semi-dwarf rootstock called B118. Scions and root stocks will be provided but feel free to bring your own. Bring a grafting knife if you have one. You will go home with a young tree ready to plant. The class limit is 15 students.

One Saturday March 16th at 10:00  am

Location: Salt Springs Carriage Barn, Salt Springs State Park

 Fee: $5.00    Material Fee: $10 for supplies (root stock & scion)


302  Pruning Basics   Instructor Jim Kessler, Master Gardener, Retired Forester

When should I prune? How should I prune? Where should I prune? Why and why not prune? These and other pruning questions will be demonstrated on common trees, fruit trees, and shrubs. After you understand the basics of pruning you will be able to take your knowledge to most trees and shrubs for better growth, durability, and health. Directions will be emailed shortly before class. Class will be held rain or shine so dress appropriately! The class limit is 20 students so register early!

One Saturday,  March 16 at 10:00 am

Location: TBD Directions will be emailed to you or mailed to you.

Fee: $5.00 


303 Apple Tree Grafting in Your Backyard      Instructor Jim Kessler, Forester, Master Gardener

Learn how to use existing apple trees which have survived deer and other local hazards. Find trees in fence rows, creek bank or road bank, and turn them into your favorite apple variety. Bring several of your favorite scions, (pruned suckers) to exchange.

One Saturday, March 23 at 10:00 a.m.

Location: Kessler Tree Farm, 742 SR 1018, Hallstead PA 18822

Fee: $5.00


304 Spring Garden Day         Penn State Master Gardeners of Susquehanna County This class is full

Join the Penn State Extension Master Gardeners and guest presenters for spring gardening inspiration! The day includes six educational sessions designed to provide inspiration and instructional how-to for home gardeners. Come grow with us as we cover topics including edible landscaping, no-till raised bed vegetable gardening, topiaries, and native plants. You’ll get your hands a little dirty creating seed tapes and seed bombs to take home! Included in the fee are morning refreshments and a light lunch. A door prize drawing and silent auction complete the day.

One Saturday, April 13, 9:00am to 3:00pm. This class is full

Location:  The Montrose Bible Conference (Lake Ridge Center) at Conference Road. 

Fee: $35.00


305 Seed to Supper – Low-budget Gardening Instructors: Lori Voll-Wallace & Master Gardener Volunteers

Seed to Supper is a comprehensive beginning gardening program that gives novice and intermediate adult gardeners the tools needed to successfully grow a portion of their own food on a limited budget. Everyone needs help with budgets these days! Planning your garden, soils, composting, watering, maintenance, pests, and more will be covered. The course book, seeds, plants, limited gardening space, and more will be made available. The Penn State Extension Master Gardeners of Susquehanna County & Trehab Food Pantry in Montrose will facilitate the program in the spring of 2024. There are 7 classes in all and will be held consecutively for 7 or 5 weeks, depending on the location.

The three possible classroom locations and available week dates are:

Interfaith in Susquehanna, beginning Tues, 3/26 at 6 pm to 8 pm. (For 7 weeks)

Trehab in South Montrose, beginning Thurs, 3/28 at 6 pm to 8 pm. (For 7 weeks)

Forest City Area Historical Society, (5 condensed classes) beginning Sat, 3/23 at 10 am to 1 pm.

(4/6, 4/20, 4/27, &  5/4)

Mention on the registration which location serves you best.

 Be prepared to fill out a survey which best describes your needs and experience level. Attend all 7/5 classes and receive a certificate. For more details contact Lori Voll-Wallace at

When: 7/5 consecutive classes beginning on March 23 or 26 or 28

Location: Pick your location &; preferred time. Limit 12 people per site.

Fee: $35.00


306 Succulent 101  Instructor Kristin Armstrong, Horticulturist

Are you one of those people that are wondering why your succulents are always dying. This class is a must for you. Succulents 101 is a brief introduction into the world of Succulents. In this class you will learn plant basics for succulents. Everything from light levels to watering. You will even have the opportunity to get your hands dirty and plant up your own 3-inch succulent to take home and try on your own. The class limit is 20 students.

One Monday, April 8 at 6:00 pm

Location: Montrose Area High School, Room 7

Fee: $5.00  Material Fee: $6.00


307 Open Air Terrarium Planter    Instructor Kristin Armstrong, Horticulturist

Are you looking for a terrarium but maybe with a succulent or cactus. Or are you looking for a terrarium, but you’re just not interested in the look of a traditional terrarium. Then this class is for you. Open air terrariums are fun planters for anyone to try. The name says it all: they are terrariums that are opened at the top and not closed like a traditional terrarium. For this class you all will learn to care for these planters. Then you will be able to plant your own 5.5-inch circle glass open air terrarium planter. The class limit is 20 students.

One Monday, April  15 at 6:00 pm

Location:  Montrose Area High School, Room 7

Fee: $5.00   Material Fee:  $11.00


308  Make Your Own Tomato Cages     Instructor: Howard Burkett, Penn State Extension Master Gardener

Once again, a very popular class is back! Tired of those flimsy cages you buy at the box stores?  Want something better?  Has multiple uses? Make your own extremely sturdy tomato cages that will last for many years. Learn how to make your own cages out of concrete reinforcement wire and get some tips on growing tomatoes, cucumbers & pole beans while you are at it.  Each cage is approximately 5 feet tall by 2 feet round.  Be sure to bring a vehicle they will fit in! The cost of material for each cage is $14.00. Let us know how many you wish to make. Cages will be available to purchase at the library until 4 pm if you do not wish to attend the one-to-two-hour class.

One Wednesday, April 24, 2024, at 10 :00 am

Location:  Susquehanna County Library Community Room, 458 High School Rd, Montrose

Fee: $5.00 Material Fee: $14.00 for each cage


309 Season Extension Continued– Hoop and Wire Bending Instructors: Penn State Master Gardeners Jim Kasten and Lori Wallace

Once again, the ever-popular season extension class. This is a continuation of the class in 2023. This time we will conclude the class with bending pipes for a mid-sized low tunnel and/or cut and bend wire for low tunnels on Friday, April 26th (rain or shine) at 6:00 pm at St. Marks.

First, we will explain how to extend your growing season by using a variety of methods. In this hands-on experience, you will then learn how to bend each of your 10-foot long EMT pipes into hoops!  The maximum space between hoops should be 30 inches; how many you need depends on the length of your garden bed or beds.  We recommend 3 of each to start with. Each person will be given the opportunity to bend their own hoops on a bending jig and/or cut their wires. One hoop is approximately 4 ft. wide and 4 ft. tall and the cost for each 10-foot pipe (hoop) will be $9. Each wire hoop will be 60” in length at $1.50 per wire. Be sure to indicate how many you want on the registration form. You also have the option to just come and listen to the discussions and gather a few tips without purchasing hoops.

One Friday, April 26, at 6:00 pm

Location: St. Mark’s Parish Hall,   New Milford

Fee: $5.00  Material Fee: cost for each pipe or wire you wish to make.


310 Make Your Own Rain Barrel Instructors: Master Gardeners, Jim Kasten and Lori Wallace

With the wacky weather we have been experiencing you never know when a drought will hit our area. It’s been feast or famine lately. Conserving water can be important. You can collect the rainwater off your shed or house roof to use in your garden or for other needs. Join the Penn State Master Gardeners for this fun DIY low-cost project.    All parts will be supplied – We will have tools available, but please bring a charged cordless drill, protective eye wear, and a 7/8″ Spade bit or hole saw.  One Kit is $50.00 and makes one rain barrel complete with hook up.  Please indicate how many you wish to make on the registration form.  Sign up Early – Deadline to reserve your kits & barrel is May 1st. We cannot guarantee a barrel and kit will be available after the 1st. You may still attend the class and listen in even if you do not wish to make a rain barrel. Please note we will be working outside so dress appropriately. 

One Saturday,  May 18th with rain date of June 8th class starts at 10:00 am

Location: Ira Reynolds Park, Susquehanna Depot, by the pavilion.

Fee: $5.00   Material Fee: $50.00 for each rain barrel kit ordered.


311 Day Lilies – Queen for a Day    Instructor: Lori Voll-Wallace, Master Gardener

Come and learn about all the different varieties of daylilies, their history, care, use, and more. After class we will tour Fred’s Day Lily Garden and then take a short walk to Fred’s “second” day lily garden. Here, you may dig up as many clumps as you wish for $10 each and take them home. Your guess is as good as mine as to what color they may be. They should be blooming around this time of year. Bring your shovel, gloves, and a box or two to put them in.

One Saturday, June 29th at 10:00 am (alternate date=July 10th)

Location: Honeyman room, Montrose Bible Conference on Locust Street

Fee: $ 5.00 Material Fee:  Pay for plants at class


312 Twilight Pond Walk     Instructor: Peter Wulfhorst, Penn State Extension Educator, and Nate Harpster, SCCD

Ponds are a common feature of the landscape of the Endless Mountains and provide a source of enjoyment for many landowners. Although they occur naturally in this area, many have been constructed for a variety of purposes.

To assist private pond owners and members of lake-based community organizations with making informed and sound management decisions a Twilight Pond Walk will take place from 6-8 pm. The walk will occur at a pond located in Brackney, PA. The full address will be disclosed upon registration. It will be held on May 14th and in case of heavy downpours, a rain date of May 21st has been selected.

The Twilight Pond Walk will cover Getting to Know Your Pond Walk & Talk, Pond Water Testing, and land use issues affecting Pond Health. The workshop costs $10.00 per person, which covers the educational materials.

Susquehanna County Conservation District and Penn State Extension will be sponsoring the Twilight Pond Walk.

Penn State encourages people with disabilities to participate in its programs and activities.  If you anticipate needing any type of accommodation or have questions about the physical access provided, call the Susquehanna County Extension office at 570-666-9003. The registration deadline is May 13. The class limit is 25 people.

One Tuesday,  May 14, at 6:00 pm (rain date May 21st.)

Location: Brackney, PA. Directions and address after registration

Fee: The class is free, but a $10 material/supply cost per person