An upcoming conference in Columbus is aimed at making school gardens more successful.

Cultivating Curiosity: The Teachable Garden, is planned for 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. May 2 at Ohio State University’s Nationwide & Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center, 2201 Fred Taylor Drive.

The conference will address such topics as tapping community resources, creating a garden-based curriculum and recruiting and training volunteers, as well as basics on starting and maintaining a garden.

Cost is $45, which includes lunch. Participation is limited to 100. The registration deadline is April 25.

Details and a mail-in registration form are at http://franklin.osu.edu.

Horticulture hotline

Medina County’s Horticulture Volunteer Hotline opens for the season this week.

The hotline is available from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursdays at three numbers: 330-725-4911, ext. 124; 330-225-7100, ext. 9237; and 330-336-6657, ext. 9237. Master gardener volunteers will be available to help callers and visitors with home, yard and garden questions.

Plant and insect samples may be brought to the Ohio State University Extension Medina office, 120 W. Washington St., during hotline hours or on Wednesdays. Insects should be in a sealed plastic bag or a small jar with a lid. Samples of leaves, branches, flowers and other plant materials should still be green. Pictures should be clear and close to the item to be identified or diagnosed.

In addition, three other counties in our region have master gardener hotlines:

• Summit County: 330-928-4769, ext. 23. Open 9 a.m. to noon Tuesdays.

• Portage County: 330-296-6432, ext. 21, or portage_mg@cfaes.osu.edu.

• Stark County: 330-830-7700, ext. 113 or 114 (you can dial the extension without waiting for the menu options), or info@osustarkmg.org. Open 9 a.m. to noon Tuesdays.

Events, programs

• Home & Garden Expo, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. today, Hartville Hardware, 1315 Edison St. NW (state Route 619). Presentations and demonstrations aimed at preparing your home for spring. Appearances by Ahmed Hassan of DIY Network, 11 a.m. and 2 p.m., and Matt Fox of HGTV and public television, 12:30 p.m. www.hartvillehardware.com or 330-877-3631.

• Craft show, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. today, Massillon Knights of Columbus, 98 Cherry Road NW. More than 100 crafters. Sponsored by the Knights of Columbus’ Columbian Ladies Guild.

• Spring Arts and Crafts Show, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. today, Greenbriar Conference & Party Centre, 50 Riffel Road, Wooster. Juried show. Sponsored by the Wayne County Arts and Crafts Guild. Free admission.

• Knitting and Crocheting Circle meetings, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. today and next Saturday, Highland Library, 4160 Ridge Road, Granger Township (330-278-4271 or 330-239-2674); 10 a.m. Tuesday, Brunswick Library, 3649 Center Road (330-273-4150); and 6 p.m. Thursday, Seville Library, 45 N. Center St. (330-769-2852).

• Knitty Gritters knitting club meeting, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday, Lake Community Branch of Stark County District Library, 11955 Market Ave. N., Lake Township. 330-877-9975.

• Starting Seeds and Plants, 7:30-8:30 p.m. Wednesday, Boyd Esler Community/Senior Center, 2491 Canfield Road, Springfield Township. Talk by Jan Becker, Summit County master gardener volunteer. Free.

• Warm Up Akron meeting, 2 p.m. Thursday, Danbury of North Canton, 181 Applegrove St. NE. Members knit or crochet squares that are used to make afghans for needy people in the Akron area. Information: 330-699-3252 or http://warmupakron.webs.com.

• Basic Begin Sewing, 7-9 p.m. Thursdays, April 3-17, Quirk Cultural Center, 1201 Grant Ave., Cuyahoga Falls. Sew lounge pants and a top. Residents $16, others $22 (supplies included). Registration: 330-971-8425 or 330-971-8225.

• Inspiration in Bloom, 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Friday through April 6, Stan Hywet Hall & Gardens, 714 N. Portage Path, Akron. Fresh flower displays and arrangements throughout the Manor House. Ticket options and pricing at www.stanhywet.org or 330-836-5533.

• Gardening programs, 11 a.m. next Saturday, Donzell’s Flower & Garden Center, 937 E. Waterloo Road, Akron. Pansy Pandemonium container workshop; plant pansy pots for $12.99 each, or $9.99 for seniors or children 12 and younger. Prepaid registration required. 4 Easy Steps to a Lovely Lawn program on Greenview’s 4-Step lawn care program by Donzell’s Dan Stefancik. Free. Registration for both programs: 330-724-0550, ext. 110.

• Twinsburg Garden Club meeting, 6:30 p.m. April 10, Twinsburg Community Center, 10260 Ravenna Road. Program: Upcycling — Ideas for Your Garden by Karen Fullerman and Nancy King, club members and Summit County master gardeners. $15. Registration deadline is Tuesday. Program information: nancyking156@yahoo.com. Club information: 330-697-7818 or www.twinsburg-garden-club.com.

• Big Spring, through April 27, Cleveland Botanical Garden, 11030 East Blvd. Children’s activities, spring blooms on display, butterfly release at 2 p.m. daily. Hours: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays; 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Wednesdays; noon to 5 p.m. Sundays. Closed Mondays. $12; children ages 3-12, $8; members and younger children, free. 216-721-1600 or www.cbgarden.org.

Submit notices of classes, programs and events two weeks in advance to mbrecken@thebeaconjournal.com or Home and Garden News, Features Department, Akron Beacon Journal, P.O. Box 640, Akron, OH 44309-0640. Please include name and phone number. All events must be open to the public.

Mary Beth Breckenridge can be reached at 330-996-3756 or mbrecken@thebeaconjournal.com. You can also become a fan on Facebook at http://tinyurl.com/mbbreck, follow her on Twitter @MBBreckABJ and read her blog at www.ohio.com/blogs/mary-beth.