A Bit of Dirt – Winter 2010

The full pdf copy of this edition is available here.


Welcome to the start of a new gardening year. The drought has been declared over, and if your garden is like mine, all plants have suffered: perennials, annuals, trees, shrubs, and turf.

Gardening has not changed in its basic philosophy but has been changed through the new hybridization of plants and scientific research. As Master Gardeners, we benefit from the efforts of these dedicated horticulturalists.

Master Gardeners are the volunteer arm of the extension office. Last year in 2008, we, as a group, volunteered 10,302 hours, delivered to the community 2337 various programs, and answered almost 8500 questions. You can give yourselves a “pat on the back” for these efforts. I am sure that once the forms have been filled out, 2009 will be even more successful.

When you volunteer for duty at the Extension Office Master Gardener’s desk, you’ll be answering the phone and emails or doing some necessary clerical chores.

When the phone rings, you’ll probably hear something to the effect “I have a problem, can you help me?” Simple questions can be answered  directly; however, more complex problems require some research.

Get their name and telephone number and tell them you’ll call them back. Before you hang up, you need to get some information. The Master Gardener’s file has a sheet with questions that you should ask the client. Some of the questions involve watering frequency, fertilization schedule, insecticide and herbicide use, and many other pertinent questions. The answer to these questions will help in resolving the problem. When all else fails, ask Marlene!

Other articles in this issue:
Caring for Your Rose Bushes in Winter – By Andy Crossland, ACMG
Bonsai, An Ancient Art – By Steve Pettis
Feeding Birds In The Winter – By Dan Willis
Preserving Fall Leaves – By Dan Willis