Biweekly Update – July 15, 2021

New Announcements:

1.    The Extension Master Gardener State Office is conducting a research study to identify factors that characterize successful EMG groups. This study will allow us to better understand EMG priorities, recommend best practices, and potentially increase long-term volunteer retention. We expect to share the information gathered across Virginia and with other EMG programs throughout the country. Your thoughtful responses and input are valuable and we hope you personally will participate in this survey. It should take no more than 15 minutes to complete. Closes August 13. Take the survey here  https://vce.az1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_3Q79mQMdY9mHSUS

2.    International Master Gardener Conference, 2021: REGISTRATION OPEN NOW, (REGISTRATION WILL NOT REOPEN FOR RECORDINGS) IMGC 2021 is now open for registration! Since we are hosting IMGC, there will be no state Master Gardener College for 2021—register for IMGC instead! We are excited to bring you more than 40 different VIRTUAL sessions, expert panels, and fun conference bonuses (like Virginia themed recipes and virtual tours). To learn more and register: https://www.internationalmastergardener.com/register

a.    View the full program here: https://www.internationalmastergardener.com/schedule/

b.    If you plan to attend IMGC, please register as early as possible! Registration is now open to the public.

c.    Be aware that IMGC registration will NOT REOPEN for access to recordings only. If you want access to conference recordings, REGISTER NOW.

3.    Gardening Ergonomic – a Zoom presentation – August 16th 7PM

a.    Dr. Natalie Foret, PT, DPT, MTC, CMTPT Join Dr. Natalie Foret, for an educational seminar about gardening ergonomics. For all scenarios in the garden, she will discuss proper form and proper use of body mechanics to protect back, knees, hips, shoulders. In addition, she will review considerations on how to modify to improve ease with gardening and techniques for those who already have an issue or pain. Lastly Dr. Foret will make exercise recommendations for building a stronger core and stretches to improve mobility. To access the Zoom link go to https://www.vbmg.org/

4.    Urban and Community Forestry Assistance Grant – The Virginia Department of Forestry's Urban and Community Forestry Assistance Grant RFP has recently been released. This grant is designed to encourage projects that promote the protection and enhancement of urban and community forestry ecosystems, tree planting, tree care, and education on tree issues. It is open to municipalities, state agencies, approved non-profit organizations, neighborhood associations, civic groups, public educational institutions, or community tree volunteer groups. Please note that there are two new categories this year: Storm Readiness, Response, and Recovery Program Development, and Outdoor Classrooms. Applications are being accepted through 4:30PM on Friday, August 20, 2021. RFP, application, and budget worksheet on website here: https://dof.virginia.gov/urban-community-forestry/urban-forestry-community-assistance/urban-and-community-forestry-grant-program/

5.    Recording Available of Douglas Tallamy Presentationhttps://piedmontmastergardeners.org If you missed the Piedmont Master Gardeners' June 3 presentation by Professor Douglas Tallamy on the subject of his latest book, The Nature of Oaks, a recording is now available on PMG’s website, https://piedmontmastergardeners.org. For the ticket price of $15, purchasers will receive an email message with a link to the recording and the password for viewing it. With his previous books, Bringing Nature Home and Nature’s Best Hope, Prof. Tallamy has made home gardeners aware of the importance of native plants in sustaining wildlife and healthy ecosystems. In his latest work, and in this presentation, Tallamy explains that oak trees stand out among native flora as keystone plants and support more forms of life than any other tree genus in North America.

6.    Have you ever found a typo in the training handbook? – We are embarking on a handbook update process and need help identifying existing errors in the handbook! If you've ever noticed a typo, error, or other mistake in the training handbook, please let us know! Submit your typos, errors, or other corrections here: https://forms.gle/JN5QAe3dwA8SmX8p7

 

Old July Announcements

7.    Lawn and Garden Q & A, July 16, August 20, 10am-11am 2021, Zoom

a.    Join VCE Horticulture Agent Guy Mussey for an informal Lawn and Garden Question and Answer session live via Zoom. Bring your lawn woes, problem plants, and pests to an expert every third Friday, May thru August. Register here: https://virginiatech.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZ0tfuGrqT4iGNxBeEujJnRfV_L0tSc7gVmh

b.    https://drive.google.com/file/d/126Fbyr-CS533Ehj2h_Jb3UQO3mlamJ4u/view?usp=sharing

 

Old Announcements

 

8.    Updated COVID restrictions – The State Office has received questions recently about changes to COVID policies for programming. VCE has updated their guidelines and has posted them to the VCE COVID-19 updates page under 'policies and guidelines' https://ext.vt.edu/covid-19updates.html

9.    Support IMGC 2021: There are many ways you can show support for Virginia’s International Master Gardener Conference and help it be successful:

a.    Registering for the conference! Come join us in September, we look forward to seeing many familiar faces, even in this virtual setting

b.    Sharing the IMGC Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/IMGC2021) with your network

c.     Telling other interested gardeners about the event! Our conference is open to members of the public as well as Extension Master Gardeners. IMGC is great way to expose gardeners to the Master Gardener Program!

10. Help scientists! Monitor for disease in your vegetable garden: Do you have a vegetable garden?! Scientists NEED your help to accurately predict the spread of downy mildew. By contributing to this project, you can help Extension researchers advise farmers so that they do not experience crop losses, and so they know when fungicide applications are warranted. Monitoring the spread of plant disease takes all of us working together!!

d.    Downy mildew of cucumber and other cucurbits (cucumber is the most important crop to monitor!) https://cdm.ipmpipe.org/gardens-and-cdm/

e.    Downy mildew of basil https://basil.agpestmonitor.org/

11. Better Impact: Important information for you to know as we launch BI: 

a.    We’ve created a helpful video to walk you through the basic use of the system. It’s only 30 minutes long, so please watch it before you use the new system:   https://video.vt.edu/media/Better+Impact+Volunteer+Management+System+training+video+for+Virginia+Cooperative+Extension+Master+Volunteers/1_nv1o3maq

b.    Between the training document here and the video linked above, you should have the information you need to get started in Better Impact! Your unit may have additional instructions and training for you, so please watch for communications from your program leads. They have been hard at work behind the scenes getting things ready to go!

c.     If you have questions as you navigate this new system, please contact your local volunteer coordinator or Extension Agent.

 

Other Announcements:

1.    Send us your announcements! Have you converted educational programs to an online format? You can still submit those announcements for the biweekly email! Submit an item for the biweekly update here.

2.    Follow the State Office on social media: Facebook | Instagram | YouTube

3.    Subscribe to In Season, our quarterly newsletter

4.    View our most recent webinar

a.    View a recording of our most recent state office webinar – Jamie King on urban forestry

                                               i.     https://mastergardener.ext.vt.edu/webinar-archive/

5.     Resources for fertilization of lawns and for those involved with Healthy Virginia Lawns programming  

6.    Do you have questions coming in to your Extension Master Gardener program and need to find some answers? Extension Search Resources for EMG Questions

Master gardeners stand around cart and clap

Virginia Beach seed library cart enters fourth season

By Debi Edwards, Virginia Beach Master Gardener

The Virginia Beach Seed Library was created as a joint project of the Meyera E Obendorf (MEO) Central  Library and Virginia Beach Master Gardeners (VBMG) to entice the general public to start planting home gardens.  Since the grand opening in 2018, we have distributed 23,287 seed packets (over 232,000 seeds!) to 719 participants.

Continue reading

Biweekly Update – June 16

New Announcements:

1.    International Master Gardener Conference, 2021: REGISTRATION OPEN NOW, (REGISTRATION WILL NOT REOPEN FOR RECORDINGS) IMGC 2021 is now open for registration! Since we are hosting IMGC, there will be no state Master Gardener College for 2021—register for IMGC instead! We are excited to bring you more than 40 different VIRTUAL sessions, expert panels, and fun conference bonuses (like Virginia themed recipes and virtual tours). To learn more and register: https://www.internationalmastergardener.com/register

a.    View the full program here: https://www.internationalmastergardener.com/schedule/

b.    If you plan to attend IMGC, please register as early as possible! Registration is now open to the public.

c.    Be aware that IMGC registration will NOT REOPEN for access to recordings only. If you want access to conference recordings, REGISTER NOW.

2.    Updated COVID restrictions – The State Office has received questions recently about changes to COVID policies for programming. VCE has updated their guidelines and has posted them to the VCE COVID-19 updates page under 'policies and guidelines' https://ext.vt.edu/covid-19updates.html

3.    Bumblebee Jamboree 2021: Pollinator Path, June 21-27, Maymont Children's Farm

a.    Chesterfield County Master Gardeners are celebrating National Pollinator Week with the Pollinator Path at Maymont. Follow the signage along the self-guided stroll as you learn about the role pollinators play and what each of us can do in our own backyard to protect natural resources. Whether you’re enjoying the outdoors at Maymont or staying at home, you can access enhanced content about birds, butterflies, bees, beetles, and bats from your phone or computer. When: June 21–27, 2021, 10 am until 7 pm daily Information: Free admission. This event is hosted by the Chesterfield County Master Gardeners and the Chesterfield County office of the Virginia Cooperative Extension. Contact: For more information, call (804) 751-4401 or visit https://linktr.ee/BBJ2021

b.    https://drive.google.com/file/d/1JvNypdzqNbd14ztImhgzXrx7FqyOsVRP/view?usp=sharing

4.    Gardening in the Valley Tour, June 26, 2021, Shenandoah County, VA

a.    Join us for the Gardening in the Valley Tour supported by the Northern Shenandoah Valley Master Gardener Association. The tour features five gardens in Shenandoah County, including the Edinburg Mill Biofiltration Garden, a pesticide-free farm, habitat-friendly suburban garden, in-town yard, and Veatch's Gleann Arboretum. Master Gardeners will be on hand to answer questions at each garden. The in-town yard will have a Spotted Lanternfly exhibit to increase awareness about this invasive pest. Tickets are $10 purchased online in advance at nsvmga.org/events/garden-tour/. On the day of the tour tickets are $12, available from 9 am to 2 pm at Edinburg Mill (214 S. Main St., Edinburg) and Pot Town Organics (181 W. King St., Strasburg).

5.    Lawn and Garden Q & A, June 18, July 16, August 20, 10am-11am 2021, Zoom

a.    Join VCE Horticulture Agent Guy Mussey for an informal Lawn and Garden Question and Answer session live via Zoom. Bring your lawn woes, problem plants, and pests to an expert every third Friday, May thru August. Register here: https://virginiatech.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZ0tfuGrqT4iGNxBeEujJnRfV_L0tSc7gVmh

b.    https://drive.google.com/file/d/126Fbyr-CS533Ehj2h_Jb3UQO3mlamJ4u/view?usp=sharing

 

Old June Announcements

6.    Insect Pests in the Vegetable Garden – Grow Your Own Food Series, June 29, 2021

a.    Jon Traunfeld from the University of Maryland, will discuss the organic control of the most common pests. He has more than 30 years of horticultural experience and frequently featured as an expert on home gardening, growing fruits and vegetables. His articles have appeared in area newspapers, Associated Press, The New York Times and he made an appearance on the Martha Stewart Show. Free Zoom program – Register at: https://virginiatech.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZAkf-GtrzwvEtHRlaUr8uu86tYslQC9jIqd

Old July Announcements

7.    The New River Valley Garden Tour – July 10, 9-5 NRV Garden Tour showcases beautiful private gardens in the New River Valley each July. The event is sponsored by the Friends of the Library with the cooperation of the New River Valley Master Gardeners. Tour date is Saturday July 10, 9 am until 5 pm., rain or shine. All gardens are in the Blacksburg Virginia town limits.

a.    Tickets $15 available June 1 and include a program and map.Purchase tickets at public libraries in Blacksburg, Christiansburg, Floyd, Radford, Salem, and Shawsville, and online here: http://www.mfrlfriends.org/wp/garden-tour/

 

Old Announcements

8.    Support IMGC 2021: There are many ways you can show support for Virginia’s International Master Gardener Conference and help it be successful:

a.    Registering for the conference! Come join us in September, we look forward to seeing many familiar faces, even in this virtual setting

b.    Sharing the IMGC Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/IMGC2021) with your network

c.     Telling other interested gardeners about the event! Our conference is open to members of the public as well as Extension Master Gardeners. IMGC is great way to expose gardeners to the Master Gardener Program!

 

9.    Help scientists! Monitor for disease in your vegetable garden: Do you have a vegetable garden?! Scientists NEED your help to accurately predict the spread of downy mildew. By contributing to this project, you can help Extension researchers advise farmers so that they do not experience crop losses, and so they know when fungicide applications are warranted. Monitoring the spread of plant disease takes all of us working together!!

d.    Downy mildew of cucumber and other cucurbits (cucumber is the most important crop to monitor!) https://cdm.ipmpipe.org/gardens-and-cdm/

e.    Downy mildew of basil https://basil.agpestmonitor.org/

10. Better Impact: Important information for you to know as we launch BI: 

a.    We’ve created a helpful video to walk you through the basic use of the system. It’s only 30 minutes long, so please watch it before you use the new system:   https://video.vt.edu/media/Better+Impact+Volunteer+Management+System+training+video+for+Virginia+Cooperative+Extension+Master+Volunteers/1_nv1o3maq

b.    Between the training document here and the video linked above, you should have the information you need to get started in Better Impact! Your unit may have additional instructions and training for you, so please watch for communications from your program leads. They have been hard at work behind the scenes getting things ready to go!

c.     If you have questions as you navigate this new system, please contact your local volunteer coordinator or Extension Agent.

11. VCE’s popular Home Food Preservation Virtual Program is back! Learn how to preserve your own fresh foods at home safely using several different techniques including dehydration, canning and fermentation. You'll also learn about the science behind each of these methods. This course is online and self-paced, so once you sign up, you'll have until December 31 to complete it in your own time. 

d.    More info and register: http://tinyurl.com/VCE-HomeFoodPreservation

12. Continuing education reading list: Reading a book from this list counts for up to 3 CE hours: https://docs.google.com/document/d/11GcvQr_wm_oH2BaNCLZuXzY6POD2f0FXD0TgY5DlBs8/edit?usp=sharing

a.    More CE opportunities here: https://mastergardener.ext.vt.edu/ce/

13. AmpleHarvest 2021 Survey: AmpleHarvest surveys America’s gardeners to learn how much more they grow than they can use (i.e. what was being lost to waste) and the desire of gardeners to donate that if they had the opportunity.  Please visit www.AmpleHarvest.org/survey to participate

 

Old September Announcements:

14.  American Community Garden Association conference, Hampton September 23-26, 2021. Virtual and in person.

a.    If you’re interested in volunteering: “Volunteer opportunities include conducting tours, facilitating workshops and/or demonstrations, hospitality, registration, directing attendees and vendors, conference set up, sponsorship opportunities, silent auction and many other options. If you are interested, please email wendy.iles@hampton.gov” style=”color:blue”>wendy.iles@hampton.gov with your specific area of interest.” More info here.

 

Other Announcements:

1.    Send us your announcements! Have you converted educational programs to an online format? You can still submit those announcements for the biweekly email! Submit an item for the biweekly update here.

2.    Follow the State Office on social media: Facebook | Instagram | YouTube

3.    Subscribe to In Season, our quarterly newsletter

4.    View our most recent webinar

a.    View a recording of our most recent state office webinar – Jamie King on urban forestry

                                               i.     https://mastergardener.ext.vt.edu/webinar-archive/

5.     Resources for fertilization of lawns and for those involved with Healthy Virginia Lawns programming  

6.    Do you have questions coming in to your Extension Master Gardener program and need to find some answers? Extension Search Resources for EMG Questions

Biweekly Update –May 26, 2021

New Announcements:

1.    International Master Gardener Conference, 2021: REGISTRATION OPEN IMGC 2021 is now open for registration! Since we are hosting IMGC, there will be no state Master Gardener College for 2021—register for IMGC instead! We are excited to bring you more than 40 different VIRTUAL sessions, expert panels, and fun conference bonuses (like Virginia themed recipes and virtual tours). To learn more and register: https://www.internationalmastergardener.com/register

a.    View the full program here: https://www.internationalmastergardener.com/schedule/

b.    If you plan to attend IMGC, please register as early as possible! Registration will open to the public next week!

2.    State Office Webinar series

3.    VMGA Scholarships for International Master Gardener Conference: Interested in IMGC 2021 but need help with the registration fee? VMGA is offering Diane Relf scholarships, deadline to apply is June 5. https://vmga.net/wordpress/vmga-diane-relf-scholarship-guidelines/

4.    Webinar with Author Douglas Tallamy on “The Nature of Oaks” June 3, 2021

a.    The Piedmont Master Gardeners and Virginia Cooperative Extension will host an online presentation by author Douglas Tallamy on “The Nature of Oaks” at 7 p.m. Thursday, June 3. Admission is $15. Register by June 1 at https://piedmontmastergardeners.org/events/ to reserve a spot in the program. A longtime professor at the University of Delaware and author of widely acclaimed books such as Bringing Nature Home and Nature’s Best Hope, Tallamy has shown how we can help save nature’s ecological riches in our own backyards. In his latest book, The Nature of Oaks, he

5.    Cape Charles Garden Tour, June 6, 2021, Cape Charles, VA

a.    Join us for a tour of several home gardens by members of the Eastern Shore Master Gardeners. The tour begins at the New Roots Youth Garden, on the corner of Randolph Ave. and Fig. St. where children, families and the community experience a connection with food from seed to table. Master Gardeners will be available to answer your questions. https://visitesva.com/events/listings/cape-charles-garden-tour-2021/

6.    Community Forestry Webinars: Urban Tree Pest Update – Insects that Harm Trees, June 15, 2021

a.    The trees that line our streets and roads, shade our yards, beautify our parks and playgrounds, and protect our streams are all part of the community forest that provides a wealth of benefits to each of us. Over the years, the number of trees (or tree cover) in our communities have been declining for various reasons including attack from invasive pests, injury from construction activities or deicing salts, improper tree care practices, unwarranted removals by some and lack of funding for replacement of declining trees. Each month the Community Forestry Webinars will explore topics related to the planting, care, and management of our community trees. From Penn State Extension. Registration required by June 15: https://web.cvent.com/event/77597569-e355-4956-8892-47d0fcba1a8e/summary  

7.    Insect Pests in the Vegetable Garden – Grow Your Own Food Series, June 29, 2021

a.    Jon Traunfeld from the University of Maryland, will discuss the organic control of the most common pests. He has more than 30 years of horticultural experience and frequently featured as an expert on home gardening, growing fruits and vegetables. His articles have appeared in area newspapers, Associated Press, The New York Times and he made an appearance on the Martha Stewart Show. Free Zoom program – Register at: https://virginiatech.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZAkf-GtrzwvEtHRlaUr8uu86tYslQC9jIqd

8.    The New River Valley Garden Tour – July 10, 9-5 NRV Garden Tour showcases beautiful private gardens in the New River Valley each July. The event is sponsored by the Friends of the Library with the cooperation of the New River Valley Master Gardeners. Tour date is Saturday July 10, 9 am until 5 pm., rain or shine. All gardens are in the Blacksburg Virginia town limits.

a.    Tickets $15 available June 1 and include a program and map.Purchase tickets at public libraries in Blacksburg, Christiansburg, Floyd, Radford, Salem, and Shawsville, and online here: http://www.mfrlfriends.org/wp/garden-tour/

 

 

Old Announcements

1.    Support IMGC 2021: There are many ways you can show support for Virginia’s International Master Gardener Conference and help it be successful:

a.    Registering for the conference! Come join us in September, we look forward to seeing many familiar faces, even in this virtual setting

b.    Sharing the IMGC Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/IMGC2021) with your network

c.     Telling other interested gardeners about the event! Our conference is open to members of the public as well as Extension Master Gardeners. IMGC is great way to expose gardeners to the Master Gardener Program!

 

2.    Help scientists! Monitor for disease in your vegetable garden: Do you have a vegetable garden?! Scientists NEED your help to accurately predict the spread of downy mildew. By contributing to this project, you can help Extension researchers advise farmers so that they do not experience crop losses, and so they know when fungicide applications are warranted. Monitoring the spread of plant disease takes all of us working together!!

a.    Downy mildew of cucumber and other cucurbits (cucumber is the most important crop to monitor!) https://cdm.ipmpipe.org/gardens-and-cdm/

b.    Downy mildew of basil https://basil.agpestmonitor.org/

3.    Better Impact: Important information for you to know as we launch BI: 

a.    We’ve created a helpful video to walk you through the basic use of the system. It’s only 30 minutes long, so please watch it before you use the new system:   https://video.vt.edu/media/Better+Impact+Volunteer+Management+System+training+video+for+Virginia+Cooperative+Extension+Master+Volunteers/1_nv1o3maq

b.    Between the training document here and the video linked above, you should have the information you need to get started in Better Impact! Your unit may have additional instructions and training for you, so please watch for communications from your program leads. They have been hard at work behind the scenes getting things ready to go!

c.     If you have questions as you navigate this new system, please contact your local volunteer coordinator or Extension Agent.

4.    VCE’s popular Home Food Preservation Virtual Program is back! Learn how to preserve your own fresh foods at home safely using several different techniques including dehydration, canning and fermentation. You'll also learn about the science behind each of these methods. This course is online and self-paced, so once you sign up, you'll have until December 31 to complete it in your own time. 

d.    More info and register: http://tinyurl.com/VCE-HomeFoodPreservation

5.    Continuing education reading list: Reading a book from this list counts for up to 3 CE hours: https://docs.google.com/document/d/11GcvQr_wm_oH2BaNCLZuXzY6POD2f0FXD0TgY5DlBs8/edit?usp=sharing

a.    More CE opportunities here: https://mastergardener.ext.vt.edu/ce/

6.    AmpleHarvest 2021 Survey: AmpleHarvest surveys America’s gardeners to learn how much more they grow than they can use (i.e. what was being lost to waste) and the desire of gardeners to donate that if they had the opportunity.  Please visit www.AmpleHarvest.org/survey to participate

 

Old September Announcements:

7.     American Community Garden Association conference, Hampton September 23-26, 2021. Virtual and in person.

a.    If you’re interested in volunteering: “Volunteer opportunities include conducting tours, facilitating workshops and/or demonstrations, hospitality, registration, directing attendees and vendors, conference set up, sponsorship opportunities, silent auction and many other options. If you are interested, please email wendy.iles@hampton.gov” style=”color:blue”>wendy.iles@hampton.gov with your specific area of interest.” More info here.

 

Other Announcements:

1.    Send us your announcements! Have you converted educational programs to an online format? You can still submit those announcements for the biweekly email! Submit an item for the biweekly update here.

2.    Follow the State Office on social media: Facebook | Instagram | YouTube

3.    Subscribe to In Season, our quarterly newsletter

4.    View our most recent webinar

a.    View a recording of our most recent state office webinar – Jamie King on urban forestry

                                               i.     https://mastergardener.ext.vt.edu/webinar-archive/

5.     Resources for fertilization of lawns and for those involved with Healthy Virginia Lawns programming  

6.    Do you have questions coming in to your Extension Master Gardener program and need to find some answers? Extension Search Resources for EMG Questions

house in colonial williamsburg with trees

Colonial Williamsburg Arboretum Educational Tree Project

Colonial Williamsburg (CW) has within its boundaries a unique collection of trees and woody plants.  The majority of them are native to the Mid-Atlantic region, and those that are not, were introduced into the Virginia Colony prior to 1800.  Although these plants were familiar to Virginia colonists, many of today’s visitors do not recognize them because they are not readily available in commercial nurseries. 

In 2018, six James City County/Williamsburg Master Gardener Tree Steward volunteers recognized the importance of this collection of trees and woody shrubs. After conversations with the CW Landscape Management Team and certified arborist, they proposed establishment of an arboretum in Colonial Williamsburg. Their work was instrumental in developing a plan in consultation with the arborist to apply for national arboretum status with the ArbNet Arboretum Accreditation Program (ArbNet.org) maintained by the Morton Arboretum Registry.

Their work began by assembling historic records of the landscape plants by Arthur A. Shurcliff. Mr Shurcliff was the first Landscape Architect employed by John F. Rockefeller, Jr. in the 1930’s to oversee the planning layout of gardens and plantings during restoration. His plans and plats, and those developed by his successors, were obtained from the CW archives and reviewed by our teams. Next came the lengthy process of locating and inventorying the thousands of  trees and woody shrubs in the 300+ acre Historic Area of the Colonial Capitol. The Tree Stewards were divided into two-person teams and the Historic Area was divided into sections to be visited and inventoried. These inventories were recorded on spreadsheets with identifying information to form the base for later inclusion in an international Botanical Gardens Conservational Information [BGCI] plant search database. Then selections from each species were made and specimens were tagged with metal signs with QR codes that linked to an accessible data base containing information about that plant that is available to the public using a code reader on their smart phones and tablets.

On September 28, 2018, their application for Level I Status (25 trees and/or woody shrubs tagged) was approved as a fully accredited national arboretum. Work was completed on July 22, 2019 that elevated the arboretum to Level II status (100 trees and/or woody shrubs tagged). CW is now the only Level II arboretum in the Commonwealth. The eventual, long-term goal is for the arboretum to become a fully accredited Level III (500 trees and/or woody shrubs tagged) national arboretum and work is on-going to achieve that goal. Currently the only Level III arboretum in the Commonwealth is Arlington National Cemetery. Colonial Williamsburg has created a webpage for the public to learn about the Arboretum with informational links and an interactive map of the Arboretum with links to the Virginia Tech dendrology website can be found at: https://www.colonialwilliamsburg.org/explore/arboretum-gardens/

screen shot of arboretum map showing colonial Williamsburg satellite view with arrows for trees
Interactive online arboretum map

As a natural educational component of that project, the James City County/Williamsburg Tree Steward Volunteers took advantage of the educational possibilities that logically flow from the creation of the CW Arboretum. JCC/W Master Gardeners have long enjoyed a working relationship with Colonial Williamsburg. Over 20 years ago the unit developed the Learning Garden Project, that maintains two  demonstration gardens growing period flowers and vegetables in the Historic area. Master Gardener volunteers conduct weekly public tours through the gardens explaining sustainable gardening techniques and practices. Because of the success of that project, the Tree Stewards developed another joint project with CW that uses the Arboretum as a resource to educate the public on the value of trees and woody shrubs in our ecosystem. Trained volunteer Tree Stewards provide guided tours of the Arboretum on a regularly-scheduled, weekly basis under the guidance of the CW Landscape Management Team. Prior to Covid restrictions, the public, CW visitors, school groups, youth organizations and nature-based interest groups took advantage of this project. These tours involve plant identification and ​​cultural requirements, responsible landscape management, and natural resource conservation, ecological and/or environmental concerns, and the challenges involved in maintaining an urban forest.

This program provides a high level of visibility and exposure for the JCC/W Master Gardener unit, the Peninsula Tree Stewards and the Virginia Cooperative Extension educational programs and supports the overall mission of Virginia Cooperative Extension Master Gardeners: “to better utilize our resources, we form collaborations with hundreds of public and private partners and volunteers, who help us reach larger and more diverse audiences and also leverage the impact of our work …to serve communities throughout the Commonwealth… by providing communities with locally identified programs, including answers to individual questions via …educational programs to meet targeted needs; education for the preservation of historic landscapes; urban tree planting programs; and guidance in making the natural environment accessible to all residents regardless of disabilities, incomes, or where they live.”


Resources for the avid tree-hugger


This project has continued for the past 2 years and is on-going. Obviously, there is a great deal of detail and work that has been expended that cannot be explained in sufficient detail for this short summary. However, our Tree Stewards would be glad to share their experience and resources with anyone who  contemplates undertaking a similar project or any portion of it.

Biweekly Update – May 5, 2021

New Announcements:

1.    International Master Gardener Conference, 2021: REGISTRATION OPEN IMGC 2021 is now open for registration! Since we are hosting IMGC, there will be no state Master Gardener College for 2021—register for IMGC instead! We are excited to bring you more than 40 different VIRTUAL sessions, expert panels, and fun conference bonuses (like Virginia themed recipes and virtual tours). To learn more and register: https://www.internationalmastergardener.com/register

a.    View the full program here: https://www.internationalmastergardener.com/schedule/

b.    If you plan to attend IMGC, please register as early as possible! Workshops are filling fast!

2.    Support IMGC 2021: There are many ways you can show support for Virginia’s International Master Gardener Conference and help it be successful:

a.    Registering for the conference! Come join us in September, we look forward to seeing many familiar faces, even in this virtual setting

b.    Sharing the IMGC Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/IMGC2021) with your network

c.     Telling other interested gardeners about the event! Our conference is open to members of the public as well as Extension Master Gardeners. IMGC is great way to expose gardeners to the Master Gardener Program!

3.    State Office Webinar series

a.    May 20, 10:00 am | 4TheSoil: The Virginia Soil Health Coalition envisions a thriving and diverse agricultural landscape in Virginia that is profitable, sustainable and resilient now and for future generations. The Coalition facilitates communication and collaboration among a network of partners across the Commonwealth to support farmers, leverage resources, and advance strategies that improve soil health and understanding of the many benefits of healthy soils and landscapes. We are excited to discuss the Coalition and the 4TheSoil awareness campaign with Virginia Master Gardeners and explore opportunities for engagement and collaboration.

Register in advance for this meeting: https://virginiatech.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZIpd-igqj4pGNeSKq43cu1eog5PMuzicGQs?_x_zm_rtaid=PINWIh2mR0einC52W10fqw.1618422491560.252b6e548f4b6e97456e8bb15ac39b06&_x_zm_rhtaid=658

4.    Tech-Savvy Gardening, May 17: On May 17, 2021 (7pm – 8pm) learn about Tech-savvy gardening. Gardeners use all kinds of tools and our digital world regularly offers new tools to acquire gardening information. There are many apps and online resources, but which ones are best? Learn more about reliable online gardening resources from Andrea Davis, VB VCE Extension Agent. This presentation is being provided by the Virginia Beach Master Gardeners and is free and open to the public. Ask all your gardening friends and family to join us on Zoom on May 17th. https://www.vbmg.org/detail-description-of-gardening-talks.html

5.    Help scientists! Monitor for disease in your vegetable garden: Do you have a vegetable garden?! Scientists NEED your help to accurately predict the spread of downy mildew. By contributing to this project, you can help Extension researchers advise farmers so that they do not experience crop losses, and so they know when fungicide applications are warranted. Monitoring the spread of plant disease takes all of us working together!!

a.    Downy mildew of cucumber and other cucurbits (cucumber is the most important crop to monitor!) https://cdm.ipmpipe.org/gardens-and-cdm/

b.    Downy mildew of basil https://basil.agpestmonitor.org/

Old Announcements

6.    Trees Make a Better World Webinar Series: A free five-part webinar series with James Downer, Ph.D. of University of California: https://ucanr.edu/survey/survey.cfm?surveynumber=33331

7.    Better Impact: Important information for you to know as we launch BI: 

a.    We’ve created a helpful video to walk you through the basic use of the system. It’s only 30 minutes long, so please watch it before you use the new system:   https://video.vt.edu/media/Better+Impact+Volunteer+Management+System+training+video+for+Virginia+Cooperative+Extension+Master+Volunteers/1_nv1o3maq

b.    Between the training document here and the video linked above, you should have the information you need to get started in Better Impact! Your unit may have additional instructions and training for you, so please watch for communications from your program leads. They have been hard at work behind the scenes getting things ready to go!

c.     If you have questions as you navigate this new system, please contact your local volunteer coordinator or Extension Agent.

8.    VCE’s popular Home Food Preservation Virtual Program is back! Learn how to preserve your own fresh foods at home safely using several different techniques including dehydration, canning and fermentation. You'll also learn about the science behind each of these methods. This course is online and self-paced, so once you sign up, you'll have until December 31 to complete it in your own time. 

d.    More info and register: http://tinyurl.com/VCE-HomeFoodPreservation

9.    Continuing education reading list: Reading a book from this list counts for up to 3 CE hours: https://docs.google.com/document/d/11GcvQr_wm_oH2BaNCLZuXzY6POD2f0FXD0TgY5DlBs8/edit?usp=sharing

a.    More CE opportunities here: https://mastergardener.ext.vt.edu/ce/

10. AmpleHarvest 2021 Survey: AmpleHarvest surveys America’s gardeners to learn how much more they grow than they can use (i.e. what was being lost to waste) and the desire of gardeners to donate that if they had the opportunity.  Please visit www.AmpleHarvest.org/survey to participate

Old May Announcements:

11. Diseases in the Vegetable Garden, May 11, 6pm More info click here.

a.    Grow Your Own Food Series, produced by VMGA Ed. Comm.: Common diseases and their biological and sustainable management. Dr. Timothy Durham Associate Professor at Ferrum College VA. Doctorate in Plant Medicine from University of Florida Registration at: https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZYrcOuprj0sGNGo0p2XUlNyiiSnxHnGtoxd

 

Old September Announcements:

12.  American Community Garden Association conference, Hampton September 23-26, 2021. Virtual and in person.

a.    If you’re interested in volunteering: “Volunteer opportunities include conducting tours, facilitating workshops and/or demonstrations, hospitality, registration, directing attendees and vendors, conference set up, sponsorship opportunities, silent auction and many other options. If you are interested, please email wendy.iles@hampton.gov” style=”color:blue”>wendy.iles@hampton.gov with your specific area of interest.” More info here.

 

Other Announcements:

1.    Send us your announcements! Have you converted educational programs to an online format? You can still submit those announcements for the biweekly email! Submit an item for the biweekly update here.

2.    Follow the State Office on social media: Facebook | Instagram | YouTube

3.    Subscribe to In Season, our quarterly newsletter

4.    View our most recent webinar

a.    View a recording of our most recent state office webinar – Jamie King on urban forestry

                                               i.     https://mastergardener.ext.vt.edu/webinar-archive/

5.     Resources for fertilization of lawns and for those involved with Healthy Virginia Lawns programming  

6.    Do you have questions coming in to your Extension Master Gardener program and need to find some answers? Extension Search Resources for EMG Questions

Biweekly Update – April 14, 2021

New Announcements:

1.    International Master Gardener Conference, 2021: REGISTRATION OPEN IMGC 2021 is now open for registration! The Virginia Extension Master Gardener program is hosting this year’s International Master Gardener Conference. We are excited to bring you more than 40 different VIRTUAL sessions, expert panels, and fun conference bonuses (like Virginia themed recipes and virtual tours). To learn more and register: https://www.internationalmastergardener.com/register

a.    View the full program here: https://www.internationalmastergardener.com/schedule/

2.    State Office Webinar series

a.    April 15, 10:00 am | Virtual EMG Training with Canvas: Join Fairfax EMGs as they discuss their switch to online training for new EMGs, what lessons they’ve learned, and share recommendations for other units taking on virtual training. This session will focus on the use of Canvas.

Register in advance for this meeting: https://virginiatech.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZYscOqqrj4iGd3uvVQT-tiDKT6_6rmTSoUA

b.    May 20, 10:00 am | 4TheSoil: The Virginia Soil Health Coalition envisions a thriving and diverse agricultural landscape in Virginia that is profitable, sustainable and resilient now and for future generations. The Coalition facilitates communication and collaboration among a network of partners across the Commonwealth to support farmers, leverage resources, and advance strategies that improve soil health and understanding of the many benefits of healthy soils and landscapes. We are excited to discuss the Coalition and the 4TheSoil awareness campaign with Virginia Master Gardeners and explore opportunities for engagement and collaboration.

Register in advance for this meeting: https://virginiatech.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZIpd-igqj4pGNeSKq43cu1eog5PMuzicGQs?_x_zm_rtaid=PINWIh2mR0einC52W10fqw.1618422491560.252b6e548f4b6e97456e8bb15ac39b06&_x_zm_rhtaid=658

3.     Organic Methods to Control Pests and Weeds, 4/19/2021

a.     On April 19, 2021 at 7pm-8pm, the Virginia Beach Master Gardeners will provide a presentation on Nonchemical and Organic Methods to Control Pests and Weeds. Dave Lawson, Branch Manager, Landscape Supply of VA, will discuss alternatives to synthetic pesticides including nonchemical and organic controls. We will learn if nonchemical methods are organic, what “organic” actually means, and what products may be available and how those products work. This presentation is free and open to the public. Go to VBMG.org to join us at 7pm on April 19th.

4.     Understanding the Myths and Truths of Organic Pesticides. More info click here.

a.     On April 19, 2021 at 7pm-8pm, the Virginia Beach Master Gardeners will provide a presentation on Understanding the Myths and Truths of Organic Pesticides. Sherry Kern, Virginia Beach Master Gardener will discuss alternatives to synthetic pesticides including nonchemical and organic controls. This presentation is free and open to the public. Go to VBMG.org to join us at 7pm on April 19th.

5.     Come to the Table: A community, local, and regional food systems virtual potluck, Friday April 23, 1:00-2:15

a.     Please join us for a virtual potluck-style conversation about community, food, farming, and more with your fellow VCE faculty and staff. The Community, Local, and Regional Food Systems (CLRFS) Program Team will invite a few agents each month to bring a “main dish” of their experience, expertise, and story to share about Extension work in their community and region. We invite you to bring your own “dishes” and stories to share.

b.     Register at: https://tinyurl.com/CLRFS2021

6.     Trees Make a Better World Webinar Series: A free five-part webinar series with James Downer, Ph.D. of University of California: https://ucanr.edu/survey/survey.cfm?surveynumber=33331

7.     Diseases in the Vegetable Garden, May 11, 6pm More info click here.

a.     Grow Your Own Food Series, produced by VMGA Ed. Comm.: Common diseases and their biological and sustainable management. Dr. Timothy Durham Associate Professor at Ferrum College VA. Doctorate in Plant Medicine from University of Florida Registration at: https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZYrcOuprj0sGNGo0p2XUlNyiiSnxHnGtoxd

 

Old Announcements

8.    Better Impact: Important information for you to know as we launch BI: 

a.    We’ve created a helpful video to walk you through the basic use of the system. It’s only 30 minutes long, so please watch it before you use the new system:   https://video.vt.edu/media/Better+Impact+Volunteer+Management+System+training+video+for+Virginia+Cooperative+Extension+Master+Volunteers/1_nv1o3maq

b.    Between the training document here and the video linked above, you should have the information you need to get started in Better Impact! Your unit may have additional instructions and training for you, so please watch for communications from your program leads. They have been hard at work behind the scenes getting things ready to go!

c.     If you have questions as you navigate this new system, please contact your local volunteer coordinator or Extension Agent.

9.    VCE’s popular Home Food Preservation Virtual Program is back! Learn how to preserve your own fresh foods at home safely using several different techniques including dehydration, canning and fermentation. You'll also learn about the science behind each of these methods. This course is online and self-paced, so once you sign up, you'll have until December 31 to complete it in your own time. 

d.    More info and register: http://tinyurl.com/VCE-HomeFoodPreservation

10. Call for recipes for a Virginia IMGC Cookbook (email recipes to Wanda Gerard Wanda vagardengurl@aol.com). Recipes should feature Virginia agricultural products or have some historical/cultural significance to the commonwealth.

11. Continuing education reading list: Reading a book from this list counts for up to 3 CE hours: https://docs.google.com/document/d/11GcvQr_wm_oH2BaNCLZuXzY6POD2f0FXD0TgY5DlBs8/edit?usp=sharing

a.    More CE opportunities here: https://mastergardener.ext.vt.edu/ce/

12. AmpleHarvest 2021 Survey: AmpleHarvest surveys America’s gardeners to learn how much more they grow than they can use (i.e. what was being lost to waste) and the desire of gardeners to donate that if they had the opportunity.  Please visit www.AmpleHarvest.org/survey to participate

Old September Announcements:

1.     American Community Garden Association conference, Hampton September 23-26, 2021. Virtual and in person.

a.    If you’re interested in volunteering: “Volunteer opportunities include conducting tours, facilitating workshops and/or demonstrations, hospitality, registration, directing attendees and vendors, conference set up, sponsorship opportunities, silent auction and many other options. If you are interested, please email wendy.iles@hampton.gov” style=”color:blue”>wendy.iles@hampton.gov with your specific area of interest.” More info here.

 

Other Announcements:

1.    Send us your announcements! Have you converted educational programs to an online format? You can still submit those announcements for the biweekly email! Submit an item for the biweekly update here.

2.    Follow the State Office on social media: Facebook | Instagram | YouTube

3.    Subscribe to In Season, our quarterly newsletter

4.    View our most recent webinar

a.    View a recording of our most recent state office webinar – Jamie King on urban forestry

                                               i.     https://mastergardener.ext.vt.edu/webinar-archive/

5.     Resources for fertilization of lawns and for those involved with Healthy Virginia Lawns programming  

6.    Do you have questions coming in to your Extension Master Gardener program and need to find some answers? Extension Search Resources for EMG Questions

Biweekly Update – March 30, 2021

New Announcements:

1.    International Master Gardener Conference, 2021: Program released! The program for IMGC 2021, hosted by the Virginia EMG program, is now available:

a.    Web version: https://www.internationalmastergardener.com/schedule/

b.    PDF version:  https://www.internationalmastergardener.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/IMGC-Program-small.pdf

2.    REGISTRATION FOR IMGC 2021 OPENS IN LESS THAN ONE WEEK, on Monday April 5! We do expect registration for this event to fill, so register early to reserve your spot. Registration is capped at 2,500. Monitor your email for an email with the registration link.

3.    State Office Webinar series

a.    April 15, 10:00 am | Virtual EMG Training with Canvas: Join Fairfax EMGs as they discuss their switch to online training for new EMGs, what lessons they’ve learned, and share recommendations for other units taking on virtual training. This session will focus on the use of Canvas.

Register in advance for this meeting: https://virginiatech.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZYscOqqrj4iGd3uvVQT-tiDKT6_6rmTSoUA

4.     UVA Lecture: SEEDING RESISTANCE, Friday April 2

a.     UVA Lecture: SEEDING RESISTANCE: FEATURING FUTUREFARMERS, ELIZABETH HOOVER, KRISTYN LEACH, AND IRA WALLACE “Seed saving is intimate, a reciprocal act between human and plant and an expression of obligations to past and future generations, as well as non-human communities. We hope this conversation reveals the myriad networks we engage when we design with plants and to inspire latent opportunities for designing, stewarding, and living with plants.” https://www.arch.virginia.edu/events/seeding-resistance

5.     MGACRA Spring Symposium, April 10, 2021 9a.m. To 3 p.m.

a.     The public is invited to register for our April 10, 2021 Spring Symposium event (via Zoom). To register and pay on-line or by mail go to https://www.mgacra.org/2021-symposium.html. The fee is $20 (or $15 for VMGA and MGACRA members). We hope you will join us from the comfort of your own home. We have four great speakers scheduled.

6.    Grow Your Own Food Series, produced by VMGA Ed. Comm.

a.    Diseases in the Vegetable Garden, Tuesday, May 11, 6pm: Common diseases and their biological and sustainable management. Dr. Timothy Durham Associate Professor at Ferrum College VA. Doctorate in Plant Medicine from University of Florida Registration.

b.    Insect Pests, Tuesday, June 29, 6pm: Identify and sustainably control insect pests in the vegetable garden. Jon Traunfeld from the University of Maryland. M.S. Agricultural Extension Education, University of Tennessee. An expert on home gardening and pest management, he has appeared in the Baltimore Sun, Associated Press, The New York Times, and on The Martha Stewart Show. In his current position, he focuses on small-scale food production through the Grow It Eat It program.

c.     Preserving Your Bounty, Tuesday, September 21, 6pm: An overview of food preservation methods, from drying to pressure cooking, including the plusses and minuses of each. Becky Gartner B.S. Home Economics Education/ Extension, Virginia Tech; M.S. Human Nutrition and Foods, Virginia Tech.

d.    Link will be posted at: https://vmga.net/wordpress/vmga-education-events/

Old Announcements

7.    Better Impact: Important information for you to know as we launch BI: 

a.    We’ve created a helpful video to walk you through the basic use of the system. It’s only 30 minutes long, so please watch it before you use the new system:   https://video.vt.edu/media/Better+Impact+Volunteer+Management+System+training+video+for+Virginia+Cooperative+Extension+Master+Volunteers/1_nv1o3maq

b.    Between the training document here and the video linked above, you should have the information you need to get started in Better Impact! Your unit may have additional instructions and training for you, so please watch for communications from your program leads. They have been hard at work behind the scenes getting things ready to go!

c.     If you have questions as you navigate this new system, please contact your local volunteer coordinator or Extension Agent.

8.    VCE’s popular Home Food Preservation Virtual Program is back! Learn how to preserve your own fresh foods at home safely using several different techniques including dehydration, canning and fermentation. You’ll also learn about the science behind each of these methods. This course is online and self-paced, so once you sign up, you’ll have until December 31 to complete it in your own time.

d.    More info and register: http://tinyurl.com/VCE-HomeFoodPreservation

9.    NEW publication: The Right Answer: How to Find Unbiased, Research-Based Answers to Horticultural Questions https://resources.ext.vt.edu/contentdetail?contentid=2580

10. Hours requirements have been updated for 2021, view here https://drive.google.com/file/d/1DuoxFD9cUooLYrizDsGtI79nxhTy0PGK/view?usp=sharing

11.  Garden Expo http://www.vafgs.org/

e.    Each year the Virginia Flower and Garden Expo (VB Master Gardener and Steering Committee member of the Expo) is usually held at the Virginia Beach Convention Center toward the end of January.  Due to the current pandemic, the Expo could not be held in-person but will be held throughout 2021 in a virtual format.  Using their website (www.vafgs.org), the Steering Committee for the Expo has planned a year-long educational event with the theme, “Celebrating Gardens Across Virginia.”  The content of the website will change at the beginning of each new month and will include a broad range of topics. 

12. Call for recipes for a Virginia IMGC Cookbook (email recipes to Wanda Gerard Wanda vagardengurl@aol.com). Recipes should feature Virginia agricultural products or have some historical/cultural significance to the commonwealth.

13. Continuing education reading list: Reading a book from this list counts for up to 3 CE hours: https://docs.google.com/document/d/11GcvQr_wm_oH2BaNCLZuXzY6POD2f0FXD0TgY5DlBs8/edit?usp=sharing

a.    More CE opportunities here: https://mastergardener.ext.vt.edu/ce/

14. AmpleHarvest 2021 Survey: AmpleHarvest surveys America’s gardeners to learn how much more they grow than they can use (i.e. what was being lost to waste) and the desire of gardeners to donate that if they had the opportunity.  Please visit www.AmpleHarvest.org/survey to participate

Old April Announcements:

15. Invitation to the Central Rappahannock Virtual Garden, April l 10 via Zoom:

a.    CALLING ALL GARDENERS…Please join us in our Virtual Garden for the 8th Annual Garden Symposium, presented by the Master Gardeners of the Central Rappahannock Area. Our lively cast of 4 professional gardeners will provide 5 exciting hours of perspectives on “Gardening for Your Lifestyle”, and be available for discussion with symposium participants. Registration is now open for the symposium on April 10, 2021. Please visit our website, https://www.mgacra.org/2021-symposium.html to register for this event.

Old September Announcements:

16.  American Community Garden Association conference, Hampton September 23-26, 2021. Virtual and in person.

a.    If you’re interested in volunteering: “Volunteer opportunities include conducting tours, facilitating workshops and/or demonstrations, hospitality, registration, directing attendees and vendors, conference set up, sponsorship opportunities, silent auction and many other options. If you are interested, please email wendy.iles@hampton.gov” style=”color:blue”>wendy.iles@hampton.gov with your specific area of interest.” More info here.

 

Other Announcements:

1.    Send us your announcements! Have you converted educational programs to an online format? You can still submit those announcements for the biweekly email! Submit an item for the biweekly update here.

2.    Follow the State Office on social media: Facebook | Instagram | YouTube

3.    Subscribe to In Season, our quarterly newsletter

4.    View our most recent webinar

a.    View a recording of our most recent state office webinar – Jamie King on urban forestry

                                               i.     https://mastergardener.ext.vt.edu/webinar-archive/

5.     Resources for fertilization of lawns and for those involved with Healthy Virginia Lawns programming  

6.    Do you have questions coming in to your Extension Master Gardener program and need to find some answers? Extension Search Resources for EMG Questions

Biweekly Update – March 8, 2021

New Announcements:

1.    Better Impact: Important information for you to know as we launch BI: 

a.    We’ve created a helpful video to walk you through the basic use of the system. It’s only 30 minutes long, so please watch it before you use the new system:   https://video.vt.edu/media/Better+Impact+Volunteer+Management+System+training+video+for+Virginia+Cooperative+Extension+Master+Volunteers/1_nv1o3maq

b.    Between the training document here and the video linked above, you should have the information you need to get started in Better Impact! Your unit may have additional instructions and training for you, so please watch for communications from your program leads. They have been hard at work behind the scenes getting things ready to go!

c.     If you have questions as you navigate this new system, please contact your local volunteer coordinator or Extension Agent.

d.   If you haven’t yet received your temporary username or password for Better Impact, first check the spam folder of your email. If it is not there, please contact Kathleen at reedka@vt.edu.

2.    State Office Webinar series

a.    March 18, 10:00 am |Vegetable Grafting for Home Gardens: Why & How to Graft Your Own Transplants with Josh Kardos Register in advance for this meeting: https://virginiatech.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZwtduigqzgsG9Al5hgp3lrvI_iunj6KjO4w

3.    VCE’s popular Home Food Preservation Virtual Program is back! Learn how to preserve your own fresh foods at home safely using several different techniques including dehydration, canning and fermentation. You’ll also learn about the science behind each of these methods. This course is online and self-paced, so once you sign up, you’ll have until December 31 to complete it in your own time.

a.    More info and register: http://tinyurl.com/VCE-HomeFoodPreservation

4.    Home Gardening Series March 15, 4-6 pm

b.    Hanover Master Gardeners are offering weekly presentations of our Home Gardening Series by ZOOM that are free and open to the public. They are on Saturday morning starting at 10:30 am. Topics for March include: “Introducing Native Shrubs and Groundcovers to the Home Landscape”, “Monarchs”, and “Water Quality in Your Backyard”. You must pre-register before 4:30 pm on Friday to receive a link to the next session. Recordings from sessions will be posted as soon as available. To pre-register, see dates for March, and links to previous sessions go to: https://hanovermastergardeners.org/schedules-for-public-events/  ‎

c.     Register in advance for this meeting: https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZwscO-urTgoHNfFEq_zzwbNPiBrBb2RXkZm  After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

5.    NEW publication: The Right Answer: How to Find Unbiased, Research-Based Answers to Horticultural Questions https://resources.ext.vt.edu/contentdetail?contentid=2580

6.    Urban Vegetable Gardening, March 22,2021 7PM- 8PM

d.    The Virginia Beach Master Gardeners are hosting a one-hour presentation on Urban Vegetable Gardening. The days may be cold and dreary, those seed catalogs are piling up and you long to have really fresh vegetables, but you think that you can’t grow fresh vegetables because you don’t have enough garden space. Urban Vegetable Gardening is the answer for you. John Wilson, owner of John Capstone Creations in Virginia Beach, will discuss the importance of urban agriculture, how to stretch the period of time you can harvest vegetables and ways to improve your garden fertility. This informative presentation is available at the Virginia Beach Master Gardeners website VBMG.org This one-hour presentation is free and open to the public so invite all of your friends and family.

e.    More info https://drive.google.com/file/d/1lHCJLieTueVwj8Wzwh0mD6l8Xcw9dy56/view?usp=sharing

7.     Garden Expo http://www.vafgs.org/

f.      Each year the Virginia Flower and Garden Expo (VB Master Gardener and Steering Committee member of the Expo) is usually held at the Virginia Beach Convention Center toward the end of January.  Due to the current pandemic, the Expo could not be held in-person but will be held throughout 2021 in a virtual format.  Using their website (www.vafgs.org), the Steering Committee for the Expo has planned a year-long educational event with the theme, “Celebrating Gardens Across Virginia.”  The content of the website will change at the beginning of each new month and will include a broad range of topics. 

8.     5th Annual Seed Swap Rescheduled! March 20, 2021

g.     The Central Rappahannock Area Master Gardeners will hold their annual seed swap on March 20, 2021, from 10:00 AM to 1:00 PM (weather permitting), outside of the King George Citizens Center. Bring your seeds if you got ‘em, come anyway if you don’t! The event is FREE and open to all. (Link to flyer). Please check the MGACRA Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/MGACRA/  if weather looks questionable.

h.     More info: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1SSbRIsIZg6NZKI-Oivt3UoB1R2Nt7Pqd/view?usp=sharing

Old Announcements

9.    Hours requirements have been updated for 2021, view here https://drive.google.com/file/d/1DuoxFD9cUooLYrizDsGtI79nxhTy0PGK/view?usp=sharing

10. IMGC Search For Excellence – Deadline May 1. The David Gibby Search for Excellence (SFE) Awards recognize the outstanding volunteer work of Extension Master Gardeners (EMG) & Volunteer Coordinators. Please submit your projects! It would be great to see lots of VA entries/awards! Apply here: https://www.imgcsfe.com/

11. Call for recipes for a Virginia IMGC Cookbook (email recipes to Wanda Gerard Wanda vagardengurl@aol.com). Recipes should feature Virginia agricultural products or have some historical/cultural significance to the commonwealth.

12. Continuing education reading list: Reading a book from this list counts for up to 3 CE hours: https://docs.google.com/document/d/11GcvQr_wm_oH2BaNCLZuXzY6POD2f0FXD0TgY5DlBs8/edit?usp=sharing

a.    More CE opportunities here: https://mastergardener.ext.vt.edu/ce/

13. IMGC: Virtual Tours

b.    With the switch to a virtual platform for IMGC 2021, we have had to reimagine how we will offer tours to participants. We are asking EMGs from across Virginia to submit links to virtual tours that have taken part in, seen, or created. From these submissions, our IMGC Tours Team will put together a Virginia Tours page for conference goers.

c.     Additional details and virtual tours submission can be found here: https://forms.gle/NnSjPskPhGuXXhL49

14. Tree Classes and Walks– Charlottesville Area Tree Stewards is a series of 6 free classes and walks in the first half of 2021 either on weekday evenings or weekends so that all can enjoy them. Please follow the link below for more details and registration information.
https://www.charlottesvilleareatreestewards.org/learn-about-trees/take-a-tree-steward-class/

15. AmpleHarvest 2021 Survey: AmpleHarvest surveys America’s gardeners to learn how much more they grow than they can use (i.e. what was being lost to waste) and the desire of gardeners to donate that if they had the opportunity.  Please visit www.AmpleHarvest.org/survey to participate

Old March Announcements:

16. Plant Virginia Natives 2021 Spring and Fall Landscaping with Natives Webinar Series

a.    The Plant Hampton Roads Natives campaign is pleased to be collaborating with other campaigns across the state to offer a series of 12 webinars – 6 this spring and 6 this fall. The webinars will guide you through the why and how to turn your home garden into a beautiful retreat for your family and a native habitat for birds and other wildlife. The series kick-off is on Friday, March 5 at 6:30 pm with an engaging presentation by Dr. Douglas Tallamy, renowned author of Bringing Nature Home and of Nature’s Best Hope.Sign-up for all 12 webinars for just $10! More details on the series and registration is available at www.PlantVirginiaNatives.org  

17. Gardening in the Valley Symposium, March 6: Northern Shenandoah Valey EMGs present a VIRTUAL Gardening in the Valley Symposium, featuring “Urban Bee Keeping,” “Herbs for Health and Healing,” “Raised Beds vs Traditional Beds” and more. More info: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1L2cEsUAZA4rdESKvKgyh97ER_EMY4cSb/view?usp=sharing

18. Piedmont Master Gardeners Schedule Spring Lecture Series, Thursdays in March: The Piedmont Master Gardeners have lined up an outstanding slate of speakers for their 2021 Spring Lecture Series and will present them online from 7 to 8:15 p.m. over four Thursday evenings in March.

b.    Online registration starts February 1 on PMG’s Events webpage (piedmontmastergardeners.org/events/) and is required to receive an invitation to the Zoom sessions. Schedule here: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1sD-RAwdSTiGEw7koZyrgzYjhgMgxoEdZ/view?usp=sharing

19. Plant, Nurture, Grow: Gardening In Rhythm with Nature March 20, 2021: The Loudoun County Extension Master Gardeners are proud to present our 11th Annual Garden Symposium, Plant, Grow, Nurture: Gardening in Rhythm with Nature, on March 20, 2021. This year we are virtual, so attendees can enjoy the speakers from the comfort of their own home. Registrants not available on the 20th can watch a recording of the speakers at any time until the end of March. Event information can also be found at https://loudouncountymastergardeners.org/events/annual-symposium/  Registration is limited and opens on February 1, 2021. We hope to see you at the Symposium!

Old April Announcements:

20. Invitation to the Central Rappahannock Virtual Garden, April l 10 via Zoom:

a.    CALLING ALL GARDENERS…Please join us in our Virtual Garden for the 8th Annual Garden Symposium, presented by the Master Gardeners of the Central Rappahannock Area. Our lively cast of 4 professional gardeners will provide 5 exciting hours of perspectives on “Gardening for Your Lifestyle”, and be available for discussion with symposium participants. Registration is now open for the symposium on April 10, 2021. Please visit our website, https://www.mgacra.org/2021-symposium.html to register for this event.

Old September Announcements:

21.  American Community Garden Association conference, Hampton September 23-26, 2021. Virtual and in person.

a.    If you’re interested in volunteering: “Volunteer opportunities include conducting tours, facilitating workshops and/or demonstrations, hospitality, registration, directing attendees and vendors, conference set up, sponsorship opportunities, silent auction and many other options. If you are interested, please email wendy.iles@hampton.gov” style=”color:blue”>wendy.iles@hampton.gov with your specific area of interest.” More info here.

 

Other Announcements:

1.    Send us your announcements! Have you converted educational programs to an online format? You can still submit those announcements for the biweekly email! Submit an item for the biweekly update here.

2.    Follow the State Office on social media: Facebook | Instagram | YouTube

3.    Subscribe to In Season, our quarterly newsletter

4.    View our most recent webinar

a.    View a recording of our most recent state office webinar – Jamie King on urban forestry

                                               i.     https://mastergardener.ext.vt.edu/webinar-archive/

5.     Resources for fertilization of lawns and for those involved with Healthy Virginia Lawns programming  

6.    Do you have questions coming in to your Extension Master Gardener program and need to find some answers? Extension Search Resources for EMG Questions

Biweekly Update – March 4, 2021

New Announcements:

1.    We are getting ready to switch over to our new volunteer management system, Better Impact. Here's some important information for you to know as we launch this new system: 

a.    We’ve created a helpful video to walk you through the basic use of the system. It’s only 30 minutes long, so please watch it before you use the new system:   https://video.vt.edu/media/Better+Impact+Volunteer+Management+System+training+video+for+Virginia+Cooperative+Extension+Master+Volunteers/1_nv1o3maq

b.    Between the training document here and the video linked above, you should have the information you need to get started in Better Impact! Your unit may have additional instructions and training for you, so please watch for communications from your program leads. They have been hard at work behind the scenes getting things ready to go!

c.     If you have questions as you navigate this new system, please contact your local volunteer coordinator or Extension Agent.

1.    VCE’s popular Home Food Preservation Virtual Program is back! Learn how to preserve your own fresh foods at home safely using several different techniques including dehydration, canning and fermentation. You'll also learn about the science behind each of these methods. This course is online and self-paced, so once you sign up, you'll have until December 31 to complete it in your own time. 

a.    More info and register: http://tinyurl.com/VCE-HomeFoodPreservation

2.    Home Gardening Series March 15, 4-6 pm

a.    Hanover Master Gardeners are offering weekly presentations of our Home Gardening Series by ZOOM that are free and open to the public. They are on Saturday morning starting at 10:30 am. Topics for March include: “Introducing Native Shrubs and Groundcovers to the Home Landscape”, “Monarchs”, and “Water Quality in Your Backyard”. You must pre-register before 4:30 pm on Friday to receive a link to the next session. Recordings from sessions will be posted as soon as available. To pre-register, see dates for March, and links to previous sessions go to: https://hanovermastergardeners.org/schedules-for-public-events/  ‎

b.     Register in advance for this meeting: https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZwscO-urTgoHNfFEq_zzwbNPiBrBb2RXkZm  After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

3.    NEW publication: The Right Answer: How to Find Unbiased, Research-Based Answers to Horticultural Questions https://resources.ext.vt.edu/contentdetail?contentid=2580

4.    Urban Vegetable Gardening, March 22,2021 7PM- 8PM

a.    The Virginia Beach Master Gardeners are hosting a one-hour presentation on Urban Vegetable Gardening. The days may be cold and dreary, those seed catalogs are piling up and you long to have really fresh vegetables, but you think that you can’t grow fresh vegetables because you don’t have enough garden space. Urban Vegetable Gardening is the answer for you. John Wilson, owner of John Capstone Creations in Virginia Beach, will discuss the importance of urban agriculture, how to stretch the period of time you can harvest vegetables and ways to improve your garden fertility. This informative presentation is available at the Virginia Beach Master Gardeners website VBMG.org This one-hour presentation is free and open to the public so invite all of your friends and family.

b.    More info https://drive.google.com/file/d/1lHCJLieTueVwj8Wzwh0mD6l8Xcw9dy56/view?usp=sharing

5.     Garden Expo http://www.vafgs.org/

a.    Each year the Virginia Flower and Garden Expo (VB Master Gardener and Steering Committee member of the Expo) is usually held at the Virginia Beach Convention Center toward the end of January.  Due to the current pandemic, the Expo could not be held in-person but will be held throughout 2021 in a virtual format.  Using their website (www.vafgs.org), the Steering Committee for the Expo has planned a year-long educational event with the theme, “Celebrating Gardens Across Virginia.”  The content of the website will change at the beginning of each new month and will include a broad range of topics. 

6.     5th Annual Seed Swap Rescheduled! March 20, 2021

a.     The Central Rappahannock Area Master Gardeners will hold their annual seed swap on March 20, 2021, from 10:00 AM to 1:00 PM (weather permitting), outside of the King George Citizens Center. Bring your seeds if you got ‘em, come anyway if you don’t! The event is FREE and open to all. (Link to flyer). Please check the MGACRA Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/MGACRA/  if weather looks questionable.

b.     More info: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1SSbRIsIZg6NZKI-Oivt3UoB1R2Nt7Pqd/view?usp=sharing

 

Old Announcements

7.    Hours requirements have been updated for 2021, view here https://drive.google.com/file/d/1DuoxFD9cUooLYrizDsGtI79nxhTy0PGK/view?usp=sharing

8.    IMGC Search For Excellence – Deadline May 1. The David Gibby Search for Excellence (SFE) Awards recognize the outstanding volunteer work of Extension Master Gardeners (EMG) & Volunteer Coordinators. Please submit your projects! It would be great to see lots of VA entries/awards! Apply here: https://www.imgcsfe.com/

9.    Call for recipes for a Virginia IMGC Cookbook (email recipes to Wanda Gerard Wanda vagardengurl@aol.com). Recipes should feature Virginia agricultural products or have some historical/cultural significance to the commonwealth.

10. Continuing education reading list: Reading a book from this list counts for up to 3 CE hours: https://docs.google.com/document/d/11GcvQr_wm_oH2BaNCLZuXzY6POD2f0FXD0TgY5DlBs8/edit?usp=sharing

a.    More CE opportunities here: https://mastergardener.ext.vt.edu/ce/

11. IMGC: Virtual Tours

b.    With the switch to a virtual platform for IMGC 2021, we have had to reimagine how we will offer tours to participants. We are asking EMGs from across Virginia to submit links to virtual tours that have taken part in, seen, or created. From these submissions, our IMGC Tours Team will put together a Virginia Tours page for conference goers.

c.     Additional details and virtual tours submission can be found here: https://forms.gle/NnSjPskPhGuXXhL49

12. Tree Classes and Walks– Charlottesville Area Tree Stewards is a series of 6 free classes and walks in the first half of 2021 either on weekday evenings or weekends so that all can enjoy them. Please follow the link below for more details and registration information.
https://www.charlottesvilleareatreestewards.org/learn-about-trees/take-a-tree-steward-class/

13. AmpleHarvest 2021 Survey: AmpleHarvest surveys America’s gardeners to learn how much more they grow than they can use (i.e. what was being lost to waste) and the desire of gardeners to donate that if they had the opportunity.  Please visit www.AmpleHarvest.org/survey to participate

 

Old March Announcements:

14. Plant Virginia Natives 2021 Spring and Fall Landscaping with Natives Webinar Series

a.    The Plant Hampton Roads Natives campaign is pleased to be collaborating with other campaigns across the state to offer a series of 12 webinars – 6 this spring and 6 this fall. The webinars will guide you through the why and how to turn your home garden into a beautiful retreat for your family and a native habitat for birds and other wildlife. The series kick-off is on Friday, March 5 at 6:30 pm with an engaging presentation by Dr. Douglas Tallamy, renowned author of Bringing Nature Home and of Nature's Best Hope.Sign-up for all 12 webinars for just $10! More details on the series and registration is available at www.PlantVirginiaNatives.org  

15. Gardening in the Valley Symposium, March 6: Northern Shenandoah Valey EMGs present a VIRTUAL Gardening in the Valley Symposium, featuring “Urban Bee Keeping,” “Herbs for Health and Healing,” “Raised Beds vs Traditional Beds” and more. More info: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1L2cEsUAZA4rdESKvKgyh97ER_EMY4cSb/view?usp=sharing

16. Piedmont Master Gardeners Schedule Spring Lecture Series, Thursdays in March: The Piedmont Master Gardeners have lined up an outstanding slate of speakers for their 2021 Spring Lecture Series and will present them online from 7 to 8:15 p.m. over four Thursday evenings in March.

b.    Online registration starts February 1 on PMG’s Events webpage (piedmontmastergardeners.org/events/) and is required to receive an invitation to the Zoom sessions. Schedule here: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1sD-RAwdSTiGEw7koZyrgzYjhgMgxoEdZ/view?usp=sharing

17. Plant, Nurture, Grow: Gardening In Rhythm with Nature March 20, 2021: The Loudoun County Extension Master Gardeners are proud to present our 11th Annual Garden Symposium, Plant, Grow, Nurture: Gardening in Rhythm with Nature, on March 20, 2021. This year we are virtual, so attendees can enjoy the speakers from the comfort of their own home. Registrants not available on the 20th can watch a recording of the speakers at any time until the end of March. Event information can also be found at https://loudouncountymastergardeners.org/events/annual-symposium/  Registration is limited and opens on February 1, 2021. We hope to see you at the Symposium!

Old April Announcements:

18. Invitation to the Central Rappahannock Virtual Garden, April l 10 via Zoom:

a.    CALLING ALL GARDENERS…Please join us in our Virtual Garden for the 8th Annual Garden Symposium, presented by the Master Gardeners of the Central Rappahannock Area. Our lively cast of 4 professional gardeners will provide 5 exciting hours of perspectives on “Gardening for Your Lifestyle”, and be available for discussion with symposium participants. Registration is now open for the symposium on April 10, 2021. Please visit our website, https://www.mgacra.org/2021-symposium.html to register for this event.

 

Old September Announcements:

19.  American Community Garden Association conference, Hampton September 23-26, 2021. Virtual and in person.

a.    If you’re interested in volunteering: “Volunteer opportunities include conducting tours, facilitating workshops and/or demonstrations, hospitality, registration, directing attendees and vendors, conference set up, sponsorship opportunities, silent auction and many other options. If you are interested, please email wendy.iles@hampton.gov” style=”color:blue”>wendy.iles@hampton.gov with your specific area of interest.” More info here.

 

Other Announcements:

1.    Send us your announcements! Have you converted educational programs to an online format? You can still submit those announcements for the biweekly email! Submit an item for the biweekly update here.

2.    Follow the State Office on social media: Facebook | Instagram | YouTube

3.    Subscribe to In Season, our quarterly newsletter

4.    View our most recent webinar

a.    View a recording of our most recent state office webinar – Jamie King on urban forestry

                                               i.     https://mastergardener.ext.vt.edu/webinar-archive/

5.     Resources for fertilization of lawns and for those involved with Healthy Virginia Lawns programming  

6.    Do you have questions coming in to your Extension Master Gardener program and need to find some answers? Extension Search Resources for EMG Questions