Extension invites local green-industry professionals, including landscapers, groundskeepers and nursery workers, to attend the Qualified Water Efficient Landscaper (QWEL) training Sept. 22-28. The training, offered both online and in person, will prepare participants to take the certification exam on Sept. 28 to become certified professionals.
“This training provides the opportunity for green-industry professionals to step up their education, making them more competitive in the industry and training them to help Nevadans become more water efficient,” Extension Northern Area Horticulture Specialist Heidi Kratsch said.
Instructors include Kratsch, Laine Christman with Truckee Meadows Water Authority, Leon Villegas with Ewing Irrigation and Landscape Supply, and Mark Thompson with Reno Green Landscaping. Participants will be provided with local water, soil and plant information; basic and advanced irrigation principles; and hands-on water audit skills they can use in the field.
Anyone can take the training for personal knowledge, and professionals are encouraged to take the exam to become certified. Workshops will be held:
- 22, 8:30 a.m. – 1:15 p.m., check-in at 8:15 a.m.
- 23, 8:45 a.m. – 1 p.m., check-in at 8:30 a.m.
- 24, 8:30 a.m. – 1:15 p.m., check-in at 8:15 a.m.
- 25, 8:30 a.m. – 2:15 p.m., check-in at 8:15 a.m.
- 28, 9 a.m. – noon: certification exam.
Cost for the in-person training is $100 and includes the hands-on water audit, reference manual and refreshments. Cost for the online training is $75 and includes the water audit and reference manual. The certification exam, both in-person and online, is 9 a.m. – noon, Sept. 28, and the cost is $50. The in-person training and certification exam are at the Extension office at 4955 Energy Way in Reno.
The training is part of Extension’s Qualified Water Efficient Landscaper Certification (QWEL) Program. Professionals certified by the program, which was designed by the Sonoma-Marin Saving Water Partnership and is recognized by the Environmental Protection Agency, will be listed on the EPA’s WaterSense website and on the QWEL.net website, where local landowners can find them for hire. In addition, certified QWEL professionals can use the QWEL logo on their vehicles and business cards as a means of marketing their qualifications to their customers.
Register online by Sept. 20 at the program’s website. For more information on classes or certification, email Extension Commercial Landscape Horticulture Program Coordinator Chad Morris, or call 775-336-0249. Persons in need of special accommodations or assistance should call at least three days prior to the beginning of the workshops.