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Special to the News-Times

The Union County Master Gardeners are pleased to offer a morning of gardening fun and education during its annual Dirt Friends Festival on March 10 at College Avenue Church of Christ, located at 1817 N. College.

The festival includes vendors, refreshments and door prizes and Union County Master Gardeners will be on hand to answer gardening questions. Janet Carson and Chris Olsen will be the event’s featured speakers.

Carson is a University of Arkansas Cooperative Extension horticulture specialist and the coordinator of the Arkansas Master Gardener program. She writes a weekly gardening column that runs in The Arkansas Democrat Gazette and El Dorado News Times.

Carson also writes monthly for Arkansas Gardener and Arkansas Living magazines and has been featured in Fine Gardening and Organic Gardener magazines. The well-known gardener, who’s retiring this year, travels across Arkansas encouraging gardeners of all skill levels.

Olsen, award-winning landscape architect and owner of Plantopia in North Little Rock and Botanica Gardens in Little Rock, is known for his risk-taking designs that incorporate the unusual and the unexpected.

He is the author of “Five Seasons, Unique and Stylish Ideas for Your Home and Garden” and has been featured in numerous national publications, such as Better Homes and Gardens, Southern Living and Fine Gardening. Olsen is a popular speaker that focuses on creating design pizzazz and expressing one’s personality.

Dirt Friends Festival registration begins at 8:30 a.m., with the program starting at 9 a.m. There is a $10 admission fee.

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