Luther Center for Sustainable Communities offers gardening classes

David Cavagnaro to present sustainability class May 5, registration full

Luther College Center for Sustainable Communities is offering a series of gardening classes to Luther faculty, staff and students, and Decorah community members. The series includes free classes that aim to provide basic information for beginning gardeners, as well as a forum for more seasoned gardeners to share information and ask questions. The classes are lead by local community members who have extensive experience in gardening.

The series is open to the public with no charge for admission, but registration is required. Participants can view classes and register online at The Center for Sustainable Communities anticipates that classes will fill up quickly and encourages community members to register early.

The next class in the series will be led by David Cavagnaro, co-founder and president of the Pepperfield Project, at 12:15 p.m. Monday, May 5, in Room 362 of Valders Hall of Science on the Luther campus. Registration for Cavagnaro's class is full.

Cavagnaro's class will inform participants about key planting techniques, crop spacing and pest and disease management. He will stress the importance of paying attention to the garden, recognizing spring weeds and which weeds are edible.

Cavagnaro has 30 years of gardening experience. After moving to Iowa in 1987, he became the first manager of preservation gardens at the Seed Savers Exchange. He continues his commitment to the organization by serving on the their board.

He grows hundreds of varieties of vegetables and donates them to surrounding schools in the region.

Cavagnaro is currently the president of Pepperfield Project, a local non-profit organization he co-founded with Stephen Larson, in 2008. The project is dedicated to renewing food traditions through education about seeds, gardening, cooking and food history.