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Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Monthly Master Gardener Update

There's a lot of good stuff here (all hyperlinked), so I'm re-posting in its entirety.

Springing into Vegetable Seed Saving

Seed Saving: Knowing the Difference Between Hybrids, Heirloom, and Open Pollinated Plants.  John Porter covers the pros, cons, and does a little myth busting about hybrids, heirlooms, and open-pollinated plants, all as they relate to seed you may to want save and plant in your vegetable garden.
5 Seed Saving Lessons From the Ground Up.   Connie Schultz shares how some of her ‘old favorite’ seed varieties needed to be replaced with ‘new favorites’ as she relocated to a new climate (but not a new hardiness zone).  You won’t want miss out on her 5 seeds saving lessons, or perhaps sharing some of your own.
Star of the Vegetable Garden.  Connie shares how one mystery plant became the star of her garden. Now she wants to know: What’s yours?

Admiring Spring – Where Spring Exists.

This month’s Wordless Wednesday contributors helped us wind up our spring gardening imagination.
Poppy in Chihuahua Desert
April Showers Bring May Flowers – contributed from Nebraska, Terri couldn’t take the winter/spring anymore, so she fast-forwarded to May flowers.
What’s in Your Lawn?  This month, Connie prompted us to consider what we appreciate or don’t appreciate in our lawns.
Spring in the Chihuahua Desert - a second Tuesday WW contributor, Sylvia Hacker shared some stunning views you won’t want to miss.
Wordless Wednesday Wanderings, last but not least, MJ shared how her recent WW contributions have changed the way she observes her garden and nature.  Would you be interested in being a WW contributor, she asks?

Garden Research and Innovative Outreach

Biochar Test Gardens in St. Paul
Biochar Test Gardens in St. Paul, MN
The First Year’s Data from the 2012 CenUSA Demonstration Garden Report is out!  This means we have completed the 2012  biochar demonstration gardens story, BUT, we will return shortly with biochar FAQs, and more on the 2013 activities in the biochar demonstration gardens. Stay tuned!
Ideas for Using QR Codes for Demonstration Gardens and Plant Sales. In a continuation from last month’s discussions,  Mary VanDyke of MGs of Northern Virginia and Emily Eubanks of UF,  share their QR Code presentations, giving us technical know-how and vision for using QR Code and smartphone technology in education and outreach.
Ecuador Adventure Update.  Many of you followed the 2013 OSU MGVs trip to Ecuador this year.  It looked so intriguing that some EMGs from other states asked via the blog comments if they could join.  The answer: We would love to have other MGVs join us!

On-demand Learning: Webinars and Online Modules

This month, you may want to consider looking into the following continuing ed or on-demand learning opportunities.
Online IPM Modules for Master Gardeners are still a hit.  Registration is required, but free!
*eXtension Fire Ant Webinars  just released April 5th – Don’t Bug Me Webinar: You Have Fire Ants.  This webinar may be of interest to those that live or travel to places where Fire Ants reside.
*3 Farmer’s Market Webinars. Do you volunteer or work at Farmers’ Markets? Three webinars about marketing and food safety are available this April, May, and June.
Looking for more learning opportunities?  Check out our past monthly updates, where many online modules and recorded Webinars are still available.

What’s Coming Next?

Did you know we’ll be celebrating National Volunteer Week (April 22-27),  Earth Day (April 22), and Arbor Day (April 26) all during the same week?
Stay tuned as we’ll be blogging (in the coming week)  to inquire about how volunteers are involved in Earth Day, Arbor Day, and National Volunteer Week celebrations in 2013.
-Karen Jeannette
-Editorial Reviewer
Linda Brandon, Extension Master Gardener Volunteer Coordinator
NC Cooperative Extension/Guilford County Center

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