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August 2009 Archives

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MG Weekly Update August 31 2009

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P1030972WebWow! Check out the new website, Plant Diseases of Minnesota's Yards & Gardens from Michelle Grabowski, our Extension Plant Pathologist. The page is designed to be a resource for master gardener volunteers working on disease problems. Be sure to look at the plant disease pictures in the teaching tools section. Didn't attend the Master Gardener State Conference? Please tell us why. Click Click Here to take survey'>here ... Update on the State Fair: We have had five very busy days at the Fair! Seven more to go! Thank you to everyone who is volunteering there and a special thank you to Bridget who has visited the booth at least once a day.  A couple of good hints from volunteer Diane Barber for those volunteering:
  • Come early - especially if you're doing a demo. Parking and traffic has been very heavy.
  • Bring your favorite resources. It's always easier to find info when you are familiar with the resource.
  • Please be sure to show up for your shift. If you are not able to do so, you are responsible for finding someone to fill your place.
  • Please read the Booth Instructions sheet. It contains valuable information.
EAB Update from the MDA: Click here to read more ... Malus sweet sixteen fruit1 248Volunteer Opportunity: Apple Tasting at the Arboretum Sept. 19-20, Sept. 26-27, Oct. 3-4, and Oct. 10-11 Time: 12:45 pm - 3:15 pm. Registration is closed. For two weekends in late Sept., and two weekends in early Oct, four apple varieties will be tested with the public - a different variety each weekend, with public tasting times from 1 - 3 p.m. on the Sat. and Sun. Visitors will be invited to taste an apple slice and then complete a short survey. Two Master Gardeners per session are invited to staff the apple tasting sessions from 12:45 - 3:15, provide information on preferred qualities for apples and answer general questions about the fruit and plant breeding program at the U of M northern hardy plant and fruit research program and the Arboretum's HRC. An online training session will be available by Sept. 11 for MGs working the apple tasting sessions. You will receive information on training and the event from the Arboretum.
Please note: the Tree Care Advisor classes this fall will be held at Rochester Community & Technical College - Heintz Center, Room HA112, 1926 Collegeview Drive SE. Classes will be on Wednesday evenings from 6:00 – 9:00 PM on September 30, October 7, 14, 21, 28, Saturday, October 31 (8:30-3:30 in Winona), and back in Rochester on Wednesday, November 4, 11, and 18.

MG Weekly Update August 24 2009

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State Fair MGs MG Weekly Update August 24 2009 Hard to believe, but the MN State Fair starts this week. One hundred forty-five UMN ext Master Gardeners have volunteered over the next 12 days to answer questions at our Fair booth, and to do short demonstrations on a variety of topics. If it sounds like fun, that's because it is! This year, Master Gardeners will occupy both booths - formerly the MGs and our department - so we will have the Q&A area of the booth as usual and displays highlighting various current topics:  EAB, tomato diseases, posters submitted about projects funded in part by the MN Gardening Calendar proceeds, and promotional info about the calendar itself.  Visitors to our booth will receive a coupon for the calendar at a special State Fair price of $11.99 (retail $13.99) offered by the MSHS Northern Gardener Store nearby.  Thanks to Barb Kirkpatrick for use of her EAB display and Ramsey County for letting us borrow it for the Fair. MN Gardening Calendar 2010: Makes a great gift for any Minnesota gardening enthusiast and at the Early Bird price of $6.50 - available through Sept. 6 - you can't go wrong.  Any Extension staff member can purchase calendars for you at this price. If you do not have an Extension staff member handy, contact your nearest regional office for assistance.  I'm thrilled about the November picture - check it out! 2010 Master Gardener Core Course See http://www.mg.umn.edu for more details. Registration online by Sept. 30. Fees: Interns: $200; ProHorts: $500 / Online Interns: $250; online ProHorts: $550 Dates and Locations University of Minnesota - St. Paul campus: January 13 - February 6 Pine City, MN: January 26 - February 20 Mankato, MN: February 20 - March 30 (except March 20 - Blue Earth Spring Alive! event) Online: January 12 - May 7 From Bill Hoffman, USDA: At USDA’s Earth Day celebration, John Traunfeld (University of Maryland’s State Extension Master Gardener Coordinator) brought a “Salad Box” to demonstrate how to grow greens in a small space. It was a big hit at the USDA/CSREES booth. At that time, John mentioned that a larger version, a Salad Table, had been featured on Martha Stewart’s daytime television program. See http://www.hgic.umd.edu/_media/documents/hg601.pdf the University of Maryland home and garden fact sheet on how to build and use Salad Tables and Boxes. ASPCA Website: Great website for information on plants that are toxic and non-toxic to cats and dogs: http://www.aspca.org/pet-care/poison-control/plants/ 2009 Tree Care Advisor Core Course - Southeast Minnesota - Rochester and Winona, MN  - September 30-November 18, 2009 Contacts / Application forms: Gary Johnson (johns054@umn.edu) or Dave Hanson (hanso355@umn.edu).The Tree Care Advisor core course training consists of a) 30 classroom hours, including b) one, six-hour Saturday field session, c) three homework assignments, d) one, 5-minute “speak-out,” and e) training/reference manual.  Participants that successfully complete the training are eligible to take the Minnesota Certified Tree Inspector examination at no extra charge. All classroom sessions will be held in Rochester at the Rochester Community & Technical College – Heintz Center, Room HA112, 1926 Collegeview Drive SE. Classes will be on Wednesday evenings from 6:00 – 9:00 PM on September 30, October 7, 14, 21, 28, Saturday, October 31 (8:30-3:30 in Winona), and back in Rochester on Wednesday, November 4, 11, and 18.  The Saturday field session site in Winona is to be determined, but will be held from 8:30 a.m. until 3:30 p.m with a one hour lunch break. TCA training counts toward Master Gardener continuing education hours. Cost of the TCA core course training is $98, payable to “University of Minnesota.”  Minimum number of participants required to conduct the training is 15.
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