Coconino Master Gardener Association

Another beauty from Cindy Murray. Swallowtail butterfly on phlox.

Welcome to the Coconino County Master Gardeners' Association Blog. The mission of the Coconino Master Gardener Program is to support the University of Arizona by providing researched-based information on environmentally responsible gardening and landscaping to the public.
The program creates a corps of well-informed volunteers, and delivers quality horticultural education programs adapted to our regional high elevation environment. The mission of the association is to provide support for those volunteers and Master Gardener graduates, continuing education, and opportunities to participate in community programs that increase the visibility and participation in the Master Gardener Program.
On this site you will find gardening news, links, a calendar for local events, volunteer opportunities, book reviews, agenda/minutes for our association monthly meetings, and association documents and contacts.
The Coconino County Master Gardener Association was founded in 2009 by a small group of master gardeners with the help of Hattie Braun the Director of the MG Program. After several small meetings it was opened to all master gardeners on May 21st, 2009. Meetings are held monthly on the 2rd Thursday of each month from 6:30pm - 8:30pm. We meet at the Shepherd of the Hills Lutheran Church (1601 N. San Francisco). The agenda usually includes continuing education and a short business meeting. Watch this blog for the agenda and minutes for all meetings. Contacts for the association (officers and committee chairs) are listed at the bottom of this blog.

Reporting Master Gardener Hours

All master gardener trainees and certified master gardeners need to report their hours.
Beginning in 2010 certified master gardeners need to have 6 Education hours and 12 Volunteer hours in order to maintain certification.The on line reporting system allows you to report Education or Volunteer hours.
If you have any questions or concerns about the new reporting system, please contact Crys Wells or Hattie Braun. Their contacts are listed at the bottom of the blog under
Link to reporting

Ideas for hours------
--Attend monthly meetings
--Work on an association committee
--Work at an informational booth for the Master Gardeners
--Be a speaker about gardening topics at a variety of venues

--Host a garden tour
--Work at the home show
--Work at a MG site (Olivia White Hospice, the Arboretum, Riordan Mansion, or school gardens (many others)). Check out the Assoc. Doc. & Forms under Volunteer Sites.
--Work in the Extension office
--Write an article for the newspaper column -Gardening Excetera
-Volunteer with the Seed Library
Be creative! There are many ways to fulfill your hours. Just remember for volunteering it needs to be a non-profit endeavor or an approved for profit site.

Change in Contact Information

Have you moved or changed your e-mail address, but would still like to be contacted about high elevation gardening information from the Extension? The Coconino County Extension Master Gardener Program has a site that will let you change your information on-line.

Click here to change your contact information!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Highlands Garden Conference 2011 - Prescott, AZ

This was the first talk of the 2011 Highlands Garden Conference. It was a good conference and I learned many new things. I will continue to add articles about some of the talks, and have encouraged others who attended to do the same. In the meantime here is a link to the talks if you want to listen or see their outlines.

Dr. Ed Martin
Serves as one of two Associate Directors of Extension programs in Arizona, providing leadership and support for statewide Extension programming. He has developed an Extension education and applied research program in Irrigation Engineering with an emphasis on Irrigation Management to meet the needs of agricultural producers and similar clientele in Arizona.

Dr. Martin did the intro to the conference and it was about Extension in Arizona. It was titled “Danger of a Single Story” to illustrate the many facets of Extension, and why we shouldn’t think of it as just the Master Gardener program. The title comes from a Nigerian writer by the name of Chimanda Adichie. She spoke at a TED conference on the importance of not having a single story about a person or culture. If you have 20 spare minutes I highly suggest you listen to her lecture on the web. It is a lecture that all Americans should listen to. Link to video.

Getting back to Dr. Martin’s intro, he spent the remainder of the time outlining all the programs that are part of the extension, funding and how it is spent, and the value of Master Gardener volunteers in dollars in Arizona. It was a short talk but a great intro for the conference.

Surprisingly last year was a good year for money for the Extension even though we always hear about budget cuts. They had more than $23,000,000. This comes from a variety of sources – some from donations and about half from grants written by faculty. Half was spent on the SNAP programs (this has become a larger piece of the budget), 5.5 million went to the counties, and 5.5 million was spent at the U. of A. campus. Some of the programs included:
Integrated Pest Management
This saved growers $212 million by the use of fewer pesticides. They went from 4.15 lbs per acre to .48 lbs.
SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program)
The "Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP-Ed)" is an ACE Healthy Lifestyles education program for children and families eligible for SNAP (food stamps). The mission of SNAP-Ed is to shape food consumption in a positive way, to promote health and reduce disease.
SWAP (School Water Audit Program) Swapping water waste for water efficiency
This is a program to have children learn about water conservation by doing research projects within their own schools on water use. It has resulted in large reductions of water use within schools.
4-H Program – 142,000 enrolled. NO KID LEFT INSIDE

These are only a small portion of the Extension activities. If you want to see a report of all they do this is the web address for the 2010 report.

Figures from 2010 for volunteers in the Arizona Extension:
10,395 volunteers, 159.998 hours, $21.36 value per hour = $3.2 million
Half of that $3.2 million was by volunteer Master Gardeners

And that is only Arizona - imagine how much master gardeners contribute in the US.

Loni Shapiro

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