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Registration Now Open for Master Composter Course

vermont master composter

Burlington--The Vermont Master Composter course will be offered at 13 locations around the state on four consecutive Thursdays, beginning Sept. 18.

The course will provide training to anyone interested in becoming a backyard composter by learning how to turn yard trimmings and vegetable scraps into "black gold." It is sponsored by the University of Vermont (UVM) Extension Master Gardener program with funding from the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation.

Classes will meet from 6:15 to 9 p.m. at Vermont Interactive Technology sites in Bennington, Brattleboro, Johnson, Lyndonville, Middlebury, Montpelier, Newport, Randolph Center, Rutland, St. Albans, Springfield, White River Junction and Williston. Registrations will be accepted until Sept. 12. Some sites fill quickly, so early registration is recommended.

The $40 fee includes an online course guide and additional materials. A printed guide and materials will be available for an extra $10.

To download the registration form or pay online, go to www.uvm.edu/mastergardener. To request a disability-related accommodation, call the UVM Extension Master Gardener Office at (802) 656-9562 by August 28. An e-mail confirmation of class site will be sent upon receipt of registration and payment. Directions to the sites can be found at www.vitlink.org/location.

Participants will learn about the biology of composting, worm composting, "recipe" design, compost use for disease control, site and container selection, the new Vermont Universal Recycling Law and how to manage the compost process including troubleshooting tips. Although the course is designed to provide instruction on composting in one's own backyard, individuals are encouraged to share their knowledge with others through talks, hands-on workshops and displays at fairs and field days, farmers' markets and other venues.

To become a certified Vermont Master Composter, a total of 20 volunteer hours, earned within a two-year period after completion of the course, are required. Graduates may complete these hours through school or community composting projects as well as by assisting with UVM Extension Master Gardener projects that include a composting component. Although separate programs, volunteer hours also may be applied to requirements for Extension Master Gardener certification.

For more information, contact the UVM Extension Master Gardener Office at (802) 656-9562 or master.gardener@uvm.edu

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