Thank you for all your volunteering and efforts to bring horticulture to Minnesotans. A special thank you to those of you who contact me with ideas, proposals, and suggestions for just about everything under the sun. I try to respond to every one of your phone calls and emails, but sometimes I miss a few. You can be assured that I read them all!
MG Intern Susane Moua on Extension Urban Ag Tour
I had the good fortune to attend the MISA Urban Agriculture Tour on September 1 as part of Extension programs. One of the stops was Master Gardener (Ramsey Cty) intern, Susane Moua's community supported agriculture farm in the West end / West 7th Street area of St. Paul. The farm was concealed behind recycled fencing draped with a variety of vining vegetables and flowers. Once inside, I - like many of our colleagues - was totally amazed at the raised beds that stretched across the large space. The space is owned by a couple who were delighted to have Susane take over their once empty yard and create an incredibly productive farm in the middle of urban St. Paul. Thank you, Susane for sharing!
to see a slideshow of Susane's farm and other stops on the tour.
Autumn: Time for Planning
Maybe it's because the students are all on campus now, but Fall has always been a time when I turn my attention from the outdoors and look to planning for the upcoming year.
Planning for the Master Gardener Core Course
is written all over my calendar! We met with the online Registration folks yesterday - online registration will be active in late Sept. / early October. Click here
for the class schedules for St. Paul, Pine City, Mankato and online.
If you have filled your intern slots, please encourage people to take the class as ProHort
students. The MNLA (MN Nursery and Landscape Association) just approved the core course for 3 MNLA-CP recertification points, so I hope to have more industry folks taking the class along with our interns.
Educational sessions like the core course are important to the state program as a revenue stream for the Master Gardener Program. Dave Moen and I are paid by Extension, but the rest is up to us. Revenue from core course, along with giving to the program from individuals and sponsors (click here
to give online), product sales, educational sessions, conferences and events, etc. pay for our state program's administrative position (Bridget) and to cover operating expenses. I feel strongly about generating this revenue via participation by public and the industry, not volunteers, so it's likely you'll see promotion directed at the public and industry.
October is Conference Month
Three hundred twenty (320) of you attended the Master Gardener State Conference in August. I will be spending much of October with my counterparts and colleagues at the U of MN Annual Extension Conference, Oct. 5-7, here in St. Paul, and at the national Extension Conference in St. Louis, MO, Oct. 20-23. I am also attending the Youth Voices Conference
at the UMN Landscape Arboretum Oct. 2-3. The unique and intriguing feature about this conference is that youth from all over the nation will be making the presentations and telling us, as educators, what they learned and like about horticulture education. Should most interesting indeed! Master Gardeners are welcome to attend at the Arboretum member rate - hope to see you there!
Memorial: Patrick Weicherding
I attended Patrick Weicherding's memorial on Tuesday as many of us did from Extension. It was nice to see Dean Durgan there as well as Master Gardeners and a commissioner from Anoka County. What a legacy Patrick leaves behind - teaching, writing, speaking, sharing his knowledge! I did not have the opportunity to work with Pat directly, but like many of you, I sure knew his work in urban forestry and refer to it often. Much of his writing can be found in the lists of Gardening Information
publications. Bob Mugaas, Gary Johnson, Darren Lochner and Skip Rither offered some really nice remembrances at the memorial, talking about Patrick as a colleague, a teacher, a U of MN alumni president, a friend and a fellow fisherman (Bob). You can read Patrick's obituary online here
. Please keep his wife Becky and family in your hearts during this difficult time.