Bellevue Demonstration Garden Workshops

A complete list of current year’s BDG Workshops

2023 BDG Workshops

The Bellevue Demonstration Garden (BDG) Workshops are held Saturdays from 9:30 to 10:30 AM from January through October each year.  They are held online via the Zoom platform. Registrants will receive Zoom instructions to access the online class via email in advance of the class the day of the workshop.  The workshops are recorded and recordings are available to all registrants. In some cases, speakers may have restricted the availability of recordings, and this information is provided with the registration information. Handouts, if provided, are linked for each workshop.

Cost: Advance registration is required for these workshops. The workshops fees help the Master Gardener Foundation support the activities of the WSU Extension Master Gardener program in King County.

Per workshop fee. The fee for each workshop will be $7.50.

Series subscription fee. There will be two series with ten workshops in each. Series 1 will include workshops 1 through 10, Series 2 will include workshops 11 through 21, 1 free workshop (see below, July 22). The cost for each series of ten workshops is $56.00 per series, a savings of 25% over the cost of ten individual workshops.

Financial Need Fee Waivers. Financial Need Fee Waivers are available for all workshops. To request a waiver, complete and submit the request form prior to registering.  The link to the waiver request form can be found on the registration page for each workshop. All requests must be approved by workshop staff prior to registration and will cover the complete cost of the registration.  Please note that Financial Need Fee Waivers may not be used for a series subscription.

Registration: Advance registration is required for these workshops. Registration links for each workshop and for each series are included below.

Contact us: If you have questions about these workshops, you may contact us at

2023 Series 2

2023 Series 2:  BDG Workshop presentations from May 20 – October 21, 2023.  Register for all the workshops in Series 2 at one time. The cost of the 10 workshops plus one free workshop is $56.

May 20, 2023

Registration closed

Adapting Old Gardens to New Times. Speaker: Christina Pfeiffer, Horticulture Consultant. When an older landscape no longer works well, there are lots of options to bring it up to date other than starting completely over. Water conservation, edible plants, and plants that support pollinator insects and native bees are becoming ever more important issues in these times, along with keeping our gardens beautiful and easy to care for. This lecture offers tips on adapting existing landscapes to look and function like new or better! Handout for this presentation.

June 3, 2023

Registration closed

The Art & Science of Watering. Speaker: Jim Olson, Master Gardener. Learn the chemical properties of water molecules and how they influence the success of keeping your garden properly watered. Jim will help you select the most effective watering techniques for your site, by learning how water interacts with elements in the soil.

June 10, 2023

Registration closed

Plant Propagation. Speaker: Gordon Polson, Master Gardener/Master Composter. With over 80 years of experience in England and the US, Gordon will explain basic plant propagation, with expert tips for softwood and hardwood cuttings. Included is a video demonstration by Alison Johnson on how to make a Forsythe Pot and how to divide large and tough perennials. The goal is to teach you how to cultivate more plants from your own garden stock. Handout for this presentation.

July 22, 2023

Registration closed

Fire-Resistant Landscapes. Speaker: Joe Jennings, Master Gardener. An introduction to fire-resistant landscape gardening that focuses on practical steps property owners can take. According to King County’s 2022 Wildfire Risk Reduction Strategy report, wildfire danger in King County is increasing because of climate change and human actions and 350,000 residents are at risk. Fire resistant landscape gardening reduces risks to their life and property. Previously a Master Gardener in Marin County, California, Joe has been involved in fire-resistant landscape gardening since 2017. He is a member of the WSU Master Gardener Intern class of 2022. Handouts for this presentation are: Defend your Home from Wildfire and Be Firewise. Power point deck for Fire-Resistant Landscapes.

July 29, 2023

Registration closed

Creating Your First Rock Garden. Speaker: Ross Bayton, PhD, Garden Director, Heronswood Garden. Join Heronswood Garden Director, Ross Bayton, on a journey of creation as he guides you through the process of building a rock garden. He’ll provide tips on construction, soil selection, and the best plants.

Aug. 12, 2023

Registration closed

Bringing Tomatoes to Harvest. Speaker: Marcia Dillon, Master Gardener. Marcia will share useful tips on ripening tomatoes, and how to save seeds of your favorite varieties for next year’s crop. She’ll also discuss end-of-season preparation for your garden beds to ensure success next spring. Handout for this presentation.

Aug. 26, 2023

Registration closed

Winter Gardening. Speaker: Patrick Kennedy, Molbak’s Landscape & Horticultural Consultant. Learn all about winter garden maintenance, including best practices for planting bulbs, perennials, and trees. Patrick will discuss how to design beautiful landscapes that provide interest even in the depths of winter.

Sep. 9, 2023

Registration closed

PNW Gardening and Climate Change. Speaker: Molly Van der Burch & James Little, Master Gardeners. Molly and Jim will demystify the complex topic of climate change and how it impacts gardens in the Pacific Northwest. They’ll explain how to make your garden more eco-friendly by harnessing natural processes to store more CO2 in plants and soils, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions at home.

Sep. 23, 2023

Registration closed

Gardening with Native Plants. Speaker: Rita Moore, Washington Native Plant Steward, King Conservation District. This dynamic workshop will explore the amazing variety of Northwest native plants and suitable environments to cultivate native species in your own garden.

Oct. 14, 2023

Registration closed

Fall Garden Preparation. Speaker: Laura Matter, Program Director of Natural Yard Care, Tilth Alliance. Get a jump on spring by preparing your garden properly in the fall. Laura explains how to protect your soil over winter with different mulches and cover crops. Good fall plantings will also be discussed, to encourage and support wildlife in your garden in the winter. Handout with links for this presentation.

Oct. 21, 2023

Registration closed

Fire-Resistant Landscaping: Fall Maintenance and Pruning. Speaker: Joe Jennings, Master Gardener. Fire Resistant Landscape gardening is how to use fire-resistant and drought-tolerant plants, materials, design and maintenance to prevent the spread of fire to your home. This class will focus on the fall pruning and maintenance needs for fire ladder removal, separating and thinning and dead material removal. The class will also address the issues of hill sides and slopes where extra attention is needed for spacing between trees and plants. Previously a Master Gardener in Marin County, California, Joe has been involved in fire-resistant landscape gardening since 2017. He is a member of the WSU Master Gardener Intern class of 2022. Handouts for this presentation: Fire Resistant Landscape, Pruning Guide, Wildfire Home Retrofit.

2023 Series 1

Registration closed

2023 Series 1:  BDG Workshop presentations from January 21 – May 6, 2023.  Registration was available for all the workshops in Series 1 at one time. The cost of the 10 workshops was $56.

Jan. 21, 2023

Registration closed

Creating Beautiful Landscapes for Wildlife Habitat. Speaker: James Gagliardi, Director, Bellevue Botanical Garden. Join James for inspiring stories on how to create pollinator-friendly habitats and healthy ecosystems that support native wildlife. As a lead horticulturist at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History, James pioneered pollinator garden design with the Urban Bird Habitat. Handout for this presentation.

Jan. 28, 2023

Registration closed

Starting Seeds for Flowers and Vegetables. Speaker: Colleen Donahue, Master Gardener. This workshop will teach everything you need to know about growing plants, vegetables, and flowers directly from seed.  Colleen will cover seed selection, home nursery tips, and seedling care, with practical knowledge that new and experienced gardeners alike will appreciate.

Feb. 4, 2023

Registration closed

Soft Fruits and Berries. Speaker: Krista Fay, Board Member NW Perennial Alliance. The maritime Northwest is one of the premier berry-growing regions in the world – favorites like raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, and strawberries. We’ll introduce you to berry cultivation and care, bare-root planting techniques, hardy varieties for the PNW, pest management strategies, trellising, and harvesting berries at home.

Feb. 11, 2023

Registration closed

Caring for Fuchsias. Speaker: Caroline Zebroski, President of the Eastside Fuchsia Society. The Eastside Fuchsia Society, under Caroline’s leadership, maintains the Fuchsia Garden at the Bellevue Botanical Garden. This talk will cover the cultivation and care of hardy and non-hardy fuchsias – a favorite flower of hummingbirds. Topics include growing fuchsias from cuttings, pinching techniques, pest control, and preparing potted fuchsias for winter storage. Handouts for this presentation: Fuchsia Care in March (waking fuchsias), April (pinching fuchsias) and June problem solving, Growing Fuchsia Tips, Where to Buy Fuchsias, NW Fuchsia Society contacts.

Mar. 4, 2023

Registration closed

Pruning Fruit Trees. Speaker: Brandon Bray, Master Gardener. Do you have fruit trees in your yard that you want to know more about? Like how to improve their yield, battle common pests, and prune them properly? Brandon Bray is an experienced pruner who can teach you how, when, and why to prune your fruit trees for optimal health.

Mar. 18, 2023

Registration closed

Bling on the Wing: Creating Habitat for Hummingbirds. Speaker: Greg Butler, Owner, Design of the Times. Everyone loves hummers. In this workshop, Greg will share how to attract hummingbirds to your garden with year-round flowering plants that thrive in the Pacific Northwest. You’ll also learn about hummers’ life cycles, behavior, and the habitats they’re drawn to. Handout for this workshop. Recording of this talk will be available for four weeks only per presenter’s request.

Mar. 25, 2023

Registration closed

Growing Tomatoes in the PNW. Speaker: Marcia Dillon, Master Gardener. Growing tomatoes in the PNW is much different than other climates in the US.  Marcia has met these challenges and is happy to share her tips for starting tomatoes successfully – so you can reap gorgeous ripe fruits throughout the summer season. Handout for this presentation.

Apr. 15, 2023

Registration closed

Preparing Soils for Hot, Dry Years. Speaker: Linda Chalker-Scott, WSU Professor of Horticulture. Linda will present on management practices to prepare our garden soils for hot, dry years. Her talk will cover garden and landscape soil basics, pitfalls of amending soils, mulch types and problems, and garden management using coarse arborist wood chips. Recording of this talk will be available for 2 weeks only per presenter request. Handout for this presentation.

Apr. 29, 2023

Registration closed

Success with Growing Lavender. Speaker: Sarah Richards, Founder, Lavender Wind Farm. The Pacific Northwest is known for its impressive lavender farms and favorable growing conditions. Sarah will share best practices for lavender cultivation, pruning, and propagation – as well as beneficial companion plants, and what to do with this versatile aromatic herb once it’s harvested. Handout for this presentation.

May 6, 2023

Registration closed

Natural Pest and Disease Control. Speaker: Laura Matter, Program Director of Natural Yard Care, Tilth Alliance. Most typical garden problems can be successfully managed with natural methods, instead of synthetic pesticides. Laura will explain what Integrated Pest Management means, why it’s important, and natural techniques for preventing pests. You’ll also learn how to navigate “organic” products on the market and treat pesky problems with greener solutions. Handout for this presentation.

WSU extension programs and employment are available to all without discrimination. Evidence of noncompliance may be reported through our local extension office. Reasonable accommodations will be made for persons with disabilities and special needs; contact the WSU Extension King County office at at least two weeks prior to the event.