Master Gardeners Assist Habitat for Humanity

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In 2014, Habitat for Humanity of Wake County contacted our extension office to see if we could offer a one day class on landscape maintenance for their new homeowners. Each year, they build close to 70 new homes for first time homeowners, many of whom are from other countries where landscaping may be handled very differently. In order to help build and hold value in their homes and neighborhoods, these new homeowners needed to learn basic lawn and garden maintenance in the southeast. Twice a year, landscape classes were offered until 2018, when we saw the need for quarterly classes as numbers of new homeowners continued to rise. Based on feedback from class participants, and Habitat and extension observations, a more consistent planning plan was developed to improve success in the new landscapes. Improved grading and lawn installation practices were implemented, and a set of hardy and attractive plants were chosen for the landscapes. Extension was then able to tailor the classes to address specific maintenance practices for the type of lawn and plants in place!