The October 15th SCA Gardening Workshop was great – informative, humorous, and thoroughly enjoyable! If you missed it, another workshop in the near future may be scheduled. Here are a couple of unsolicited comments on the meeting…
“Personally, I thought it would be of little interest to me, but I realized shortly after the start that I have all kinds of questions about my lawn and shrubs, (e.g., How do we control creeping bamboo we inherited when we bought our house? The best answers are not to buy a house with creeping bamboo; do not plant creeping bamboo to begin with unless you are a masochist; rather consider planting clumping bamboo as an alternative; put a 4 foot deep barrier wall around the invasive plant just prior to visiting your chiropractor; nuke it (still won't kill it)). In short, this could be a real winner going forward for the SCA and for the community.”
“This was a very good first step. Let's definitely do it again! I learned a lot. Your panel was not only informative, but charming and funny, too! And, how nice to know that planning season is whenever the conditions permit. Just planted a redbud tree yesterday!”
The program, at Grace Church, began at 6 pm with a plant swap in the lower parking lot, hosted by Barb Barnhardt and Gayle Parsons (both members of the Springfield Acres Garden Club, as well as the SCA), decked out in their gardening regalia. Plants were still being swapped and purchased until the program began and it got too dark to see at 7. Inside, refreshments were served courtesy of Sandy Frieswyk and a slide show (created by Michele Duell) of neighborhood gardens was running (thanks to Rich Duffy on the AV equipment). Thank you to all those who shared photos of their beautiful gardens!
From 7pm – 9:00 pm, three local horticulturists/Master Gardeners provided important gardening information and answered questions on how to start, maintain or improve your garden. Topics covered a variety of subjects including trees, shade, wildlife, lawns, a gardening timeline, bulbs, annuals vs. perennials, transplanting tips, fertilizing, pests, propagation, vegetables, and master gardener programs.
The presenters that evening were:
Adria Bordas is the Unit Coordinator, Senior Extension Agent-Horticulture, for the Virginia Cooperative Extension. She focuses on several diverse program areas which include pest detection and diagnosis of plant and insect problems, water quality and nutrient management, and invasive pest management. She works with both residents and landscape and nursery industry professionals of Fairfax County. Adria also is responsible for two Master Gardener Volunteer programs; the Fairfax County Master Gardener Association and the Green Spring Master Gardener volunteer programs. Both groups of volunteers help Fairfax County residents answer landscape questions at Plant Clinics, the Master Gardener Horticulture Helpdesk and through educational programs for the public such as the Ecosavvy Symposium.
Horticulture Help Desk
Volunteers from FCMGA and Green Spring master gardeners staff a year-round horticulture help desk to answer home gardeners' questions and help solve gardening problems. During the growing season (April through October) they are on duty five mornings a week, Monday through Friday, from 9:30 am – 12:30 pm. In November through March, the desk is staffed 9:30-12:30 on Tuesday and Thursday mornings.
Contact them anytime by voice mail at (703) 324-8556 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org . Please clearly explain your question or problem, and they will conduct any needed research before getting back to you. During their duty hours you can also stop by their desk in the VCE Office on the 10th floor of the Pennino Building in the Fairfax County Government Center.
Misty Kuceris is the Certified Horticulturalist for Burke Nursery & Garden Centre as well as their Social Media Marketing Director. Having established Burke Nursery's diagnostic clinic, she works with customers in addressing their plant, insect, and lawn care problems and provides them with solutions that utilize the Integrated Pest Management approach. In addition to working at Burke Nursery, Misty is a consulting garden coach working with home owners and author of various gardening articles for international publications. For more information on garden and lawn care, she can be reached at email@example.com. Burke Nursery & Garden Centre will be open until 8pm until Christmas and offers custom Christmas wreaths. Go to their website https://www.doubletakeoffers.com/burke-nursery-garden-centre# to learn more about their winter programs.
David Yost, Horticulturist, Merrifield Garden Center, has been working for Merrifield Garden Center for 16 years. Most of the time you will find him at the Plant Clinic examining sick, dying or dead plants. Identifying insects, weeds and diseases of plants and helping customers with any of their gardening questions. David also appears on Merrifield's Gardening Advisor, a live TV show Saturday mornings at 8 am on NewsChannel 8 and is the training coordinator for the Fairfax County Master Gardener's Association. You can contact David with your gardening and lawn care questions at firstname.lastname@example.org All three Merrifield locations offer free seminars from fall through winter. See their schedule at http://www.merrifieldgardencenter.com/Home.aspx