Many gardeners are pouncing on the slightest signs of green. (Photo: Shutterstock).

Carol O'Meara, Colorado State University ExtensionA crocus is trying to bloom in a friend’s yard, despite frigid days and snow squalls. She’s enchanted by the little plant’s effort and, like any gardener at this time of year, is watching its progress with excitement. She’s not alone in her countdown to spring; many gardeners are pouncing on the slightest signs of green.

We haven’t broken out pompoms and megaphones to strut and cheer on the flowers we see quite yet – that would just rile up the neighborhood dogs and cause our community to contemplate tranquilizer darts. But the temptation to encourage our gardens to awaken is like an itch under the skin.

Spring is nearing, and gardeners are getting ready. Our community has many approaches to growing and caring for the land, with no two gardens looking alike. Some are tiny, pocket-sized oases of green while others are large enough to be farms.

To meet the needs of as many growing systems as possible, we’re bringing changes to this column space by expanding the voices contributing their knowledge and wisdom to our community. Our Colorado State University office is staffed by incredibly talented people who, together, have a lot of knowledge we can share. I’ll be sharing it with three colleagues who look at using and conserving our land from different perspectives.

Sharon Bokan, our Small Acreage Coordinator, is a wealth of information on bigger areas, homesteading topics, small livestock and wildlife. Deryn Davidson is our Horticulture Agent with a talent for Landscape Architecture, pollinator issues, and native plants. Adrian Card, our Agriculture Agent, brings expertise in farm issues and growing crops for market in Boulder County. Together, we’ll mix up many topics around growing locally and wise use of your land.

Take advantage of Davidson’s landscape design savvy by signing up for her Pet Friendly Landscapes class, offered Saturday, April 4, 9 a.m. to 12 noon at the Boulder County Parks and Open Space headquarters building, 5201 St. Vrain Road in Longmont. Design, plant choices, and discussion of mulches will round out this class on making a space for both you and your furry friend. Cost for the class is $25; register online at csuextension-gardening-series.eventbrite.com.

For more information on Small Acreage, wildlife or pasture management, visit Bokan’s page at boulder.extension.colostate.edu/natural-resources-wildlife-rural-properties-pasture. You’ll find a wealth of information on issues related to managing small acreage, plus preparing for or recovering from natural disasters. And if you’re running a farm, Card’s website can help you find links to resources and information on business management, water issues or managing weeds (boulder.extension.colostate.edu/agriculture).

By Carol A. O’Meara. Carol is an Extension Agent – Horticulture Entomology at Colorado State University Extension Boulder County. For more information contact CSU Extension at the Boulder County Fairgrounds, 9595 Nelson Road, Box B, Longmont, 303.678.6377, e-mail comeara@bouldercounty.org or visit ext.colostate.edu/boulder.