HESSTON — In preparation for spring, the Dyck Arboretum of the Plains in Hesston will offer many different opportunities to learn about landscaping and gardening with native plants, including a Native Plant Landscaping Symposium on Feb. 24 and multiple "Native Plant School" evening classes on a variety of topics from January through April.

These educational opportunities will help meet the increased demand for information about using drought-tolerant, pollinator-friendly prairie species in the home landscape.

At the Native Plant Landscaping Symposium, attendees will hear the vignettes of ten master native plant gardeners, experience a virtual tour of their landscapes in photos, and have a time for dialogue with each gardener.

From wild and ecological in nature to more horticultural and manicured, our speakers will present a broad range of design styles in gardening with native plants. With hundreds of years of collective gardening experience in the room, it will be an enriching and inspiring day to think about ways to create, shift, or enhance a native garden/landscape.

Each speaker will address some of the following questions: Why garden with native plants? What design aesthetic are they trying to achieve? What wildlife does the garden attract? What planting and maintenance routines work best? Do they prefer a manicured or wild approach? What is the inspiration that keeps them going?

The day will begin with registration and a continental breakfast at 8 a.m., followed by introductions at 8:30 a.m., and will end at approximately 3:15 p.m. The cost of registration is $40 for Dyck Arboretum members and $50 for non-members for those who register by Feb. 2 and includes a full day of presentations, breakfast, and lunch.

After Feb. 2, registration will increase to $50 for members and $60 for non-members. Participants should RSVP for the symposium by Feb. 21 to be included in the meal count.

For the first year, the Dyck Arboretum is also offering classes on a variety of topics concerning native plants, including "How to Establish a Buffalograss Lawn" on Jan. 25, "Birdscaping" on March 15, "Native Plant Essentials" on March 29, and "Rain Gardens 101" on April 5. Each class will run from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Cost is $10 per person, or $8 per Arboretum member.

In addition, Arboretum Executive Director Scott Vogt and staff will offer landscape design seminars for "Sunny Native Landscapes" on Feb. 8 and for "Shady Native Landscapes" on Feb. 15, each from 6:30 to 9 p.m. These classes are limited to 10 participants each and cost $20 per person or $15 per Arboretum member.

Participants in these design classes will each receive a coupon for the 2018 FloraKansas Spring Plant Sale.

Go to www.dyckarboretum.org and click on "Events" for more information about each event or class.

To register for the Native Plant Landscaping Symposium or Native Plant School, contact the Dyck Arboretum at 620-327-8127 or arboretum@hesston.edu.