Latest Statewide Master Gardener News
Happy Holidays to All!
This Thanksgiving I finished up my bulb planting project and reflected on all of the things I am grateful for. If you’ll indulge me - I’d like to share a few of them with all of you.
- I am thrilled to be a part of the UCCE Master Gardener community and am still reveling in the warm welcome, patience and support as I have been making the transition.
- New staff and positions at the statewide office will help us better address the needs of the UCCE Master Gardeners! Aubrey Bray is enjoying her new position as training coordinator. Aubrey is doing the formative work for online training modules to complement the CA Master Gardener Handbook (new handbook’s ETA is fall 2014). Melissa Womack is settling is as program coordinator and has already shown us how valuable her talents will be to harness the power of our Web based assets throughout the state.
- The University of California Agriculture and Natural Resources (UC ANR) has a beautiful new home. Now all programs and functions within UC ANR are housed in the same building in Davis, Calif. The statewide Master Gardener office moved in early November, and now has direct access to Integrated Pest Management (IPM), Information Technology (IT) and increased visibility to ANR leadership!
Master Gardener Program
University of California, Agriculture and Natural Resources
2801 Second Street
Davis, CA 95618-7779
I am looking forward to a fruitful 2014 with exciting opportunities, including the 2014 Statewide Master Gardener Conference next October. Please keep your eyes open for blog posts and updates – the theme is appropriately Growing Together, a tagline we are actively putting into practice now and for years to come.
Wishing you a safe and family filled holiday season!
I would like to take a moment to introduce myself, my name is Melissa Womack and I am ecstatic to begin my new role as Program Representative for the University of California Statewide Master Gardeners! I’ve heard a myriad of compliments about the wonderful people involved in the Master Gardener Program across the state of California. Each person I’ve had the opportunity to meet has been helpful, kind and supportive - what a wonderful group of people. I am eager to meet and learn from each of you as my time and experience with the Master Gardeners grows.
Most of my childhood took place in Lake Forest located in Orange County, Calif. After graduating high school I moved to sunny San Diego, Calf. where I received my BA in Communications with an emphasis in Media Management from San Diego State University. After graduating college I moved to the Sacramento area with my husband Jeff. In April of 2010, we welcomed our beautiful daughter into the world.
The last 10 years of my professional career have been dedicated to marketing and social media. Before accepting a position with the UC Master Gardeners program, I was a key member of an international communications team - responsible for developing policies, best practices and social media branding for a global solar manufacturer.
I believe strongly in the importance of building an engaged online community and am thrilled to see so many Master Gardeners have ‘gone social’! I have a creative eye for design and a passion for photography, which propelled me into corporate video production. My understanding of video helped develop an online video library consisting of product information and training videos. I am excited to advance these skills and confident we will develop a video resource library for Master Gardeners in the future.
I am confident my marketing experience creating and maintaining corporate websites will help develop the functionality of the Master Gardeners Program's resources. In addition, I am looking forward to driving a public awareness campaign for the UCCE Master Gardeners and assisting in digital media management. I am always available to assist with questions surrounding the VMS system and would love to help support your efforts collecting information and resources from UC ANR.
I am hopeful my professional experience will bring added value to the Master Gardener Program. If you have any questions or comments feel free to e-mail me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or call me on my direct line 530.750.1388.
I am eager to meet and learn from each of you as my time and experience with the Master Gardeners grows. I am so thankful for the opportunity to join the statewide Master Gardener team, and looking forward to getting to know all of you!
Wishing you a Happy Thanksgiving!
It feels like just yesterday the University of California Master Gardeners joined together for the 2011 UC Master Gardener Conference at the Hyatt hotel in beautiful Santa Rosa, Calif. It’s hard to believe it is already time to start thinking about the 2014 UC Master Gardener Conference on October 7th -10th, 2014 at the gorgeous Tenaya Lodge, near the south entrance of Yosemite National Park.
You Spoke, We Listened!
After each conference the Statewide Master Gardener Conference Committee strives to make the next event bigger and better for attendees. The committee meets following the conference and reviews previous glitches and setbacks to determine solutions and strategies for future conferences. Sounds a lot like gardening, doesn’t it?
This year we surveyed UCCE Master Gardeners from across the state and asked, “What topics do you want to see at the 2014 conference?” The committee has been diligently working on securing speakers, site tours and a seminar agenda that came directly as a result from your feedback.
General Track Topics Include:
- Edible Landscaping
- Sustainable Landscaping
- Integrated Pest Management
- Growing Leaders, Growing Programs
- Art of the Garden
- Master Food Preservers
We are busy lining up speakers for each of topic, check back often for updates!
Conference Highlights Include:
- Keynote speakers
- “Search for Excellence Awards”
- Pre and post conference tours
- Silent auction
- Vendor mall
- UC Master Gardener store
- Located at one of California’s foremost destinations
The committee is currently in the process of securing sponsorships designed to help reduce registration fees. In hopes of fee reductions, registration costs have not been finalized – and will be announced at a later date.
We hope you will plan on joining us in October at the 2014 UC Master Gardener Conference. Keep up to date with conference information on our website. We will continue to keep you updated with more details as they become available from the committee.
UC IPM's new Pest Alert helps you identify Bagrada bug, an invasive stink bug spreading through western Arizona and southern California causing severe crop, nursery and landscape losses. In agriculture, Bagrada bug is a pest of cole crops and other mustard family plants. In home gardens it feeds on these same vegetables and on ornamental plants such as sweet alyssum and candytuft.
Bagrada bugs use their needlelike mouthparts to pierce and feed on plants and thier seeds. Damage includes leaf spotting, wilting, stunting, multiple branches or crowns, and death of the whole plant.
The Pest Alert was produced by UCCE advisors Eric Natwick and Surendra Dara, John Palumbo from the University of Arizona, and the UC IPM team.
Do you have snails and slugs chewing up your favorite garden plants? Are spiders hanging out in and around your home? How can you get rid of those pesky webs?
The UC Statewide IPM program has just released six short videos to help you find answers to these questions. Find the videos on the UC IPM YouTube channel or linked from the specific Pest Notes publications on Snails and Slugs or Spiders.
Snails and slugs chew holes in leaves and fruit of many different types of plants, but they aren’t always present when the damage is discovered. Caterpillars, earwigs, grasshoppers, weevils, and others cause similar damage. How can you identify the culprit? The short video clip “Did a snail eat my plant?” shows damage caused by various pests and can help you identify snail or slug damage by looking for their characteristic slime trails and excrement.
If you do have snails and slugs in the garden and want to control them without using pesticides, learn how to combine trapping with other nonchemical methods for best results in the clip “Trapping snails and slugs.” If you decide to use a pesticide, check out the video on ”How to apply snail and slug bait.” You’ll learn what types of baits are best, which ones to avoid, and how and when to apply them for best results.
Although many people fear them, most spiders you encounter during the day are harmless and can be beneficial in your garden and landscape by eating pest insects.. You can see different kinds of spiders in the short clip “Common garden spiders.” However beneficial they may be, you might not want them inside your home. Even though the easiest method of getting rid of a spider is to kill it, why not trap it and let it loose outdoors to eat those garden pests? “How to catch a spider” shows several ways to easily trap a spider and let it go, including two types of nifty spider catchers that catch spiders in hard-to-reach places. Now what about those sticky webs? “How to clean up spider webs” shows practical methods for removing webs from around your home such as vacuuming, sealing holes in cracks or screens, hosing them off, or using a Webster tool. These methods can also help to keep spiders out of your home.
For more information on snails, slugs, spiders, and other home and garden pests, visit the UC IPM web site.