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Extension > Garden > Master Gardener > Over the Backyard Fence | News from the Master Gardener director > Archives > April 2010 Archives

April 2010 Archives

The first national blog for Extension Master Gardener volunteers launches on Monday, May 3, 2010!

Blog posts can be found directly at http://blogs.extension.org/mastergardener or through the new national Extension Master Gardener website at http://extension.org/mastergardener.

 With over 94,000 master gardeners contributing an annual service value of over $100 million nationwide, the EMG program is hoping to take its program to a new level by increasing the interaction of its participants. EMG coordinators and guest contributors from various states will take turns sharing a weekly blog post on a topic geared toward the national EMG community. Master gardener volunteers will be encouraged to discuss items appearing in blog posts by submitting comments using the blog's commenting features.

As Extension Master Gardeners, you are encouraged to use the blog to talk shop and interact with other Master Gardeners other states around blog post
topics that may highlight many master gardener activities including:
  • Project ideas, successes, and learning points
  • Educational opportunities and curricula
  • Contributions to the public good (value and benefit)
  • National updates and events

Please help spread the word that on May 3, EMGs will be blogging via http://blogs.extension.org/mastergardener. The program can also be followed on Twitter @ http://twitter.com/eXEMG.  

Curious about why I chose to start my blog for UMN Ext MGs?
How often I blog?
How AWESOME I think you all are?

Read my interview on Blog Interviewer at:
http://bloginterviewer.com/environment/over-the-backyard-fence-connecting-umn-extension-master-gardeners-julie-weisenhorn

Vote for my blog and we can win some cool things (I think!)


Registration is now open for Master Gardener Summer School 2010.

The price is $25.00 per person and it includes a box lunch, materials, and morning and afternoon breaks.If you have a friend who is interested in the Master Gardener Program and horticulture, you are welcome to include them at the $25 price.

Space is limited, so please register now for the following locations. You do NOT need to select your afternoon break out sessions when you register. Maps for the sites are available on the registration website.

Saturday, June 5Faciation on Rudbeckia 'Radiance' D&T Garden July 07 .JPG
9 am - 4:30 pm
Alexandria Tech College
Alexandria, MN
Max: 150 attendees
https://www.regonline.com/MGSSAlex

Friday, July 16
9 am - 4:30 pm
MN Landscape Arboretum
Chaska, MN
Max: 300 attendees
https://www.regonline.com/MGSSArbP1000989.JPG

Saturday, August 14
9 am - 4:30 pm
Heintz Center - UMN Rochester
Rochester, MN
Max: 150 attendees
https://www.regonline.com/MGSSRoch



AGENDA

General session / Hot P1010019.JPGTopic Updates - 9 am - noon

Presenters:
  1. Bob Mugaas: Low Maintenance Turfgrasses
  2. Jeff Hahn: Update on the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB)
  3. Michelle Grabowski: Introduced Plant Pathogens
  4. Kathy Zuzek: Beyond the Emerald Ash Borer - Replacement Trees for Ash
Noon - 1:30 pm Lunch & Poster Session

Breakout Sessions  / Hands-on - 1:30 - 4:30 pm
1:30 - 2:45 pm  Breakout Session I
2:45 - 3:15 pm Break
3:15 - 4:30 pm Breakout Session II

Each of the following will be taught during Session I
(1:30 - 2:45 pm) and Session II (3:15 - 4:30). Students choose two sessions:
  1. Jeff Hahn & Michelle Grabowski: Pest Management in the Home Vegetable Garden
  2. Kathy Zuzek: Pruning Trees and Shrubs
  3. Bob Mugaas: Turfgrass Identification and Management
  4. Guest Educators / Topic
SEE YOU THERE!
 




Hope you're enjoying this nice stretch of weather!

We are in need of Master Gardeners to fill many remaining shifts for the month of April and early May. 
To fill an opening in the schedule, visit:
https://webapps2.cfans.umn.edu/EventReg/.

Pick a date(s) and just add your name to the schedule. 

This is a statewide volunteer opportunity - anyone can volunteer for this.
Just follow the instructions on how to access calls from your home:
http://www.mg.umn.edu/pdfs/yg_desk_phone_retrieval_info.pdf

We are averaging about 20 calls per day. If you can even take a few calls at a time, that would be very helpful. Every answered call helps!

Thanks a million for all you do!

Here is a new fact sheet on phosphorus-free lawn fertilizer to protect Minnesota lakes and rivers. It was produced as a collaboration of the MN Department of Agriculture, Watershed Partners, Bob Mugaas / University of Minnesota Extension, and the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency. 

Please download and keep with your Master Gardener resources.
Phosphorus-LawnCareFS-2010print-FinaL.pdf

New resource for you from the Master Gardeners in Ramsey County:
2010 Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) Frequently Asked Questions & Answers
CurrentEABhandout1.pdf

Andy Scott, a senior in Graphic Design at the Minneapolis College of Art & Design, is looking for your input, Master Gardeners.

Andy is designing a system of instructions for constructing a modular small-scale urban vegetable garden as his senior project.

The idea is anyone - no matter how limited in space - can have some sort of agricultural operation at their home. He'll be providing a variety of designs that will range from a full raised bed garden for large enough yards to small container plantings for the individual with more limited space.

Another integral part of this project is  to use materials that can be commonly found, economical and "green". Some materials Andy has considered so far:

  • Plastic / trash bags
  • Rubbermaid / storage containers
  • Tires
  • Discarded sinks, other appliances
  • Wooden skids/pallettes
  • Window shutters
  • Recycled boots/shoes.
So .... if you have any ideas for Andy, please post them on this blog or email Andy at ascot83@gmail.com.

Thank You!
Stephanie Heim is the new "Farm to School" Coordinator for Extension.  This Extension program group has been working with several organizations across the state to coordinate "Farm to Cafeteria" (K-12 schools, universities, hospitals, nursing homes) workshops.

We have four upcoming workshops: 

Wednesday, April 7th
Northland Arboretum
Baxter, MN
www.regionalpartnerships.umn.edu
Farm_to_Cafeteria_Central_Workshop 4.1.10.pdf

Tuesday, April 27th
Shalom Hill Farm
Windom, MN
www.misa.umn.edu/SW_Farm_to_Cafeteria.html
Farm_to_Cafeteria_NE_Workshop 4.5.10.pdf

Wednesday, April 28th
Ironwood Springs
Stewartville, MN
www.misa.umn.edu/SE_Farm_to_Cafeteria.html
Farm_to_Cafeteria_SE_Workshop 4.5.10.pdf

Thursday, April 29th
Cloquet Forestry Center
Cloquet, MN
www.misa.umn.edu/NE_Farm_to_Cafeteria.html
Farm_to_Cafeteria_SW_Workshop 4.5.10.pdf

We encourage on-line registration, but paper registration is available for those that do not have access online. 

If you have any questions, please contact Stephanie Heim at 507.319.0263 or heim0106@umn.edu.
We will be hosting three one-day Master Gardener Summer Schools. Registration will be online soon, so mark your calendars now and join us for some great learning and great camaraderie! Registration will be online very soon!

Saturday, June 5
9 am - 4:30 pm
Alexandria Tech College
Alexandria, MN

Friday, July 16
9 am - 4:30 pm
MN Landscape Arboretum
Chaska, MN

Saturday, August 14
9 am - 4:30 pm
Heintz Center - UMN Rochester
Rochester, MN

MG Price: $25.00 (includes box lunch)

AGENDA

General session / Hot Topic Updates - 9 am - noon

Presenters:
  1. Bob Mugaas: Low Maintenance Turfgrasses
  2. Jeff Hahn: Update on the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB)
  3. Michelle Grabowski: Introduced Plant Pathogens
  4. Kathy Zuzek: Beyond the Emerald Ash Borer - Replacement Trees for Ash
Noon - 1:30 pm Lunch & Poster Session

Breakout Sessions  / Hands-on - 1:30 - 4:30 pm
1:30 - 2:45 pm  Breakout Session I
2:45 - 3:15 pm Break
3:15 - 4:30 pm Breakout Session II

Each of the following will be taught twice. Students choose two sessions:
  1. Jeff Hahn & Michelle Grabowski: Pest Management in the Home Vegetable Garden
  2. Kathy Zuzek: Pruning Trees and Shrubs
  3. Bob Mugaas: Turfgrass Identification and Management
  4. Guest Educators / Topic
 
There is still room in the Landscape Workshops being taught on campus this May and June by Jim Calkins and me.

Here are the links to class info. You can register by calling the MN State Hort Society.

Landscape Design Basics One Day Class - June 12, 8 am - 5 pm
Landscape Design Basics 4-evening class - May 5, 12, 19 and 26 - 6-9pm

I received the following question via email from a MG - thought others might want to know this as well.

MG question:
I am finishing my first shift on the AAMG line, and I had two people ask if they could still get that "super fantastic" compost and mulch from the U.  One caller even referred to the pile viewablefrom Cleveland Ave. and wanted to know if she could get her some of that!  I haven't been able to figure out if the U is going to be handing out or selling compost or mulch, so I thought I'd ask.  Please let me know.  My instinct is just to direct them to the compost sites, but they did ask specifically about the U.

My Answer:
No, unfortunately the University does not sell compost or provide it to the public.It is used on the Twin Cities campus grounds and gardens. The people may be remembering the "farmpost" - a composted combo of materials from the animal barns that is pulverized and makes a very nice compost around plants. It is now produced off-campus by a company called Kern Landscape Resources: http://www.kernlandscaping.com/

Please ask the caller to not take compost  / mulch / soil that she sees or anywhere on campus grounds as it was put there by UMN Facilities Management - LandCare for specific use by staff and / or faculty.

We are offering special pricing for the remaining stock of the 2010edition of the Master Gardener Core Course packets in stock. We have 154 left and when they're gone, they're gone, so buy your copy now!

Regular price: $75.00 + +S&H .......... SPECIAL PRICE: $59.00 + S&H

To order from the Extension Store:
Online: http://shop.extension.umn.edu and search for item # 08525
By phone: Call the Extension Store Customer service 1-800-876-8636
Email: ShopExtension@umn.edu

The Extension Store is staffed Monday - Friday between 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m., central time. The store is not staffed on major holidays.

What's the difference?
Many Master Gardeners are still using their single, large, spiral-bound text last distributed as the core course material in 2007. The new, easy-to-carry core course packet is comprised of a series of booklets - like separate chapters - each focused on a particular topic: MG Volunteer Manual, Botany, Soils, Herbaceous Plants, Lawn Care, Weed Management, IPM, Entomology, Plant Pathology, Diagnostics, Fruits, Vegetables, Living with Wildlife, Trees & Shrubs, and Indoor Plants. In the packet are two additional items: Extension publication #1731 Soil Test Interpretations and Fertilizer Management for Lawns, Turfs, Gardens and Landscape Plants, and a CD of about 100 Extension publications.

What happened to the 3-ring binder we used to get?
The CD of publications has replaced the 3-ring binder. The publications on the CD are the same (but updated) as those in the binder (if they are still applicable). Because very few Extension publications stopped became online documents in recent years, they were no longer available in print form. Based on suggestions from volunteers, we developed the CD particularly for MGs who have dial-up Internet connection and/or those who like to use their laptops, but don't always have an internet connection (e.g. The CD of publications has replaced the 3-ring binder. The publications on the CD are the same (but updated) as those in the binder (if they are still applicable). Because very few Extension publications stopped became online documents in recent years, they were no longer available in print form. Based on suggestions from volunteers, we developed the CD particularly for MGs who have dial-up Internet connection and/or those who like to use their laptops, but don't always have an internet connection (e.g. the state fair).

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