The Watering Can Queen Anne’s County Master Gardener Newsletter S N

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Queen Anne’s County Master Gardener Newsletter
The Watering Can
V O L U M E
INSIDE THIS ISSUE:
HB1102 Info Sheet
2-3
Coordinators Corner
4
Volunteer Ops
5
Natural Enemy
Of the Month
6
Book Review:
The $64 Tomato
7
Spring Events
8
Educational
Opportunities
9
Hort Lectures
10
MGs Write
11-14
Calendars
15
1 7 ,
I S S U E
S PECIAL N EWS
3
FROM THE
M A R C H ,
2 0 1 6
S TATE M ASTER G ARDENERS
HB1102: Celebrating Maryland Native Plants and Pollinators License Plate is
currently under consideration by the Maryland General Assembly. If passed, this
legislation would create a specialty license plate to support Maryland native
plants and pollinators. Revenue from the plate would fund a statewide
University of Maryland Extension education program that would facilitate
the production and use of native plants and promote the protection of native
pollinators.
Please refer to the Home and Garden Information Center website to learn
about the need for this program and how proceeds from the specialty plate
would be used. For current and detailed information about the bill, its history,
and its progress, please refer to the General Assembly of Maryland HB1102
listing.
If you would like to contact elected officials in your district to share your views
about this bill, please do so before March 9th. The hearing for this bill is
scheduled for March 10th.
We’d love to have a big crowd at the hearing.
We are asking supporters to wear GREEN!
Thursday, March 10 at 1pm
House Office Building, Room 250
6 Bladen Street
Annapolis MD 21401
Please consider submitting brief written testimony in support of HB1102:
Is it difficult for you and your clientele to find native plants, especially MDgrown native plants? Have you seen an increasing need and demand for native
plants? Are you concerned about declines in native pollinators?
You must make and submit 35 copies. For your convenience you can send your
written testimony to [email protected] and he will make the copies and submit
them on March 10th.
Please share this information with co-workers, family, friends, and
neighbors who have an interest in native plants and pollinators.
Queen Anne’s County Master Gardener Newsletter
The Watering Can
M A R C H ,
2 0 1 6
Queen Anne’s County Master Gardener Newsletter
The Watering Can
PAGE 4
COORDINATOR’S CORNER
A few Reminders:
NAME TAGS– Please try to wear your name tags at every MG event including monthly meetings,
with lots of new and old faces it would be easier on everyone!
PLANT SALE– Saturday, May 7th Start thinking now what plants you can divide or grow and
what materials you need pots, tags, soil, etc.
Planning Committee Meeting TBA at March Monthly Meeting
HOURS– Don’t delay enter as you go! Contact me if you still need online login access.
ANNUAL TRAINING CONFERENCE– Thursday, May 26th with REGISTRATION Opening
Monday, March 14th https://extension.umd.edu/mg/training/annual-training-conference
NEW MGS AND TRAINING– We have 7 new Interns this year taking the course, I highly
encourage you all to attend a session for refresher, get those education hours in, and meet the
newest crew members!
MGS Are Writing!!!– Lots of great reads in this months newsletter thanks to you MGs, keep it
coming in!
Moving Notice!
Connie Metcalf has moved to Upstate New York!
"It's been a pleasure working with you all, best wishes for successful gardening!" -Connie
THIRD WEDNESDAY OF EACH MONTH 9:30AM TO 11:30AM
Tilghman Terrace, Centreville
Monthly Meeting Host Sign-up (NO HOST NO FOOD)
March 16th
April 20th
Cathy Tengwall
May18th
June
Summer Picnic
July 20th
August
No Meeting—4H Fair
September 21st
October 19th
November 16th
December 14th
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Holiday Luncheon
PAGE 5
QAC MG Volunteer Opportunities
P OLLINATORS
Next Meeting Wednesday, March 16, 8:30 am at the QA Extension Office, right
before our monthly meeting. For more information contact Denise Malueg,
[email protected]
K ENT I SLAND P LANT C LINIC
The Farmers Market is at Christ Church, 830 Romancoke Road (aka Route 8). We set
the booth tables up at 3 to 3:15 pm to be ready for bugs, citizens, and damaged plants
by 3:30 pm. We start knocking down the booth around 6 pm. Bring a beverage bottle
to stay hydrated.
Next Plant Clinic: Thursday, March10th
Please consider volunteering at YOUR MG table ONE day this year!
Nick Stoer 301- 219-9098 [email protected]
Cathy Tengwall 443-994-2523 [email protected]
C OMMUNITY G ARDENING + GIEI
Next Meeting, Wednesday March 9th 10am in the QAC Extension Office
G ROW I T E AT I T S TATE W IDE M EETINGS FOR 2016
Y EAR OF THE T OMATO !
HTTP :// EXTENSION . UMD . EDU / GROWIT /2016- YEAR - TOMATO


Wednesday, July 27th, 10-1pm, at Center for Educational Partnership, Riverdale
Tuesday, November 15th, 10-1pm at Baltimore City
S PRING S EED S WAP
Saturday, March 19 from 11:00am-1:00pm
Kent County Library in Chestertown.
We have so many, many seeds we would like to share: Peas, beans, cabbage,
carrots, greens, flowers, herbs, peppers, squash, tomatoes and much more!
Come to our 2nd Annual Seed Swap. You do not need to bring seeds in
order to receive seeds.
For more information or to help, please contact Sabine Harvey,
[email protected]
or 410-778-1661
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Natural Enemy of the Month
The inaugural entry in the Natural Enemy of the Month profile goes to the
loveable Ladybird Beetles, more commonly called Lady Bugs. There are
many species of Ladybird Beetles, but those of significance in Maryland are
the Convergent, the Twice-Stabbed, the Seven-Spotted, and the MultiColored Asian. These species are the first line of defense for Maryland
home gardeners against many soft-bodied insect pests.
Ladybird Beetles feed on pest insects in both their adult and larval stages.
The favored prey of Ladybird Beetles include aphids, spider mites, scale
insects, whiteflies, leaf beetle larvae, some insect eggs, and small
caterpillars. Adults will also feed on nectar, pollen, and honeydew.
Adults vary in size but average ¼” to 3/8“ long. They are typically round or
oval and convex in shape. The colors are bright and varied and range from
black to pink, yellow, or red, with or without spots on the wings. The
Convergent Ladybird Beetle is usually orange with a number of small black
spots. The Twice-stabbed species is black with two red spots on its back.
The Seven-Spotted species is orange or red with seven spots on its back,
and the Multi-Colored Asian Ladybird Beetle has highly variable spot
patterns.
Convergent Lady
Twiced-Stabbed Lady
Beetles in the larval stage appear alligator-like and are usually dark with
orange or yellow markings and may be up to ¼ “ long. Some species have
short bristles on parts of the body, and all have three prominent pairs of
legs. The larvae are very active, crawling about nimbly as they hunt for prey.
The tiny, bright yellow-orange, spindle-shaped eggs of Ladybird Beetles are
laid upright in clusters of 5-30, usually located near colonies of the insects
they eat. The eggs may be mistaken for eggs of some pest beetles such as
the Colorado Potato Beetle, the Mexican Bean Beetle, and the Squash
Beetle.
Ladybird Beetles are found on many plants throughout the garden and
landscape, feeding on soft-bodied insects or flowering plants. The most likely
place to observe them is on the undersides of leaves. Garden crops on
which Ladybird Beetles are commonly found include potatoes, sweet corn,
peas, beans, tomatoes, and asparagus. Most species in Maryland overwinter
as adults in sheltered locations.
To attract Ladybird Beetles to your garden grow flowering plants that
produce the nectar and pollen eaten by adults. This is especially important in
late spring before the insects they feed on become abundant. To ensure the
continued presence of these valuable insects in your garden avoid or reduce
the use of broad-spectrum insecticides. Horticultural oils and insecticidal
soaps are less harmful to Ladybird Beetles than some residual conventional
pesticides.
by Jim Persels
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Seven-Spotted
Multi-Color Asian
Larva
PAGE 7
The $64 Tomato – Book Review
I recall that William Alexander's book, The $64 Tomato, got a lot of press
when it was released in 2006. I just got around to reading it, a decade later.
Of course, I can relate to the author in what he faces in his vegetable garden
and orchard, which most of us would – the bright optimism when purchasing
a new property, coordinating with landscaping contractors, fretting over
imperfect soil texture, puzzling over weeds or seedlings, attracting or
detracting wildlife, and the hearty satisfaction of fall harvests.
During these ten years in his garden (and 25 years of gardening during his
lifetime), Alexander still did not come to terms with the fact that Nature
always wins. He writes of battling wildlife and other common garden pests
using the most extreme measures, abandoning his organic principles for allout chemical warfare and outright torture of at least one poor, scared
opossum (he Havahart-trapped the opossum by accident and then was too
cowardly to get close enough to the frightened animal to ignore its snarls and
open the trap to release it – that story gets inhumanely worse and more difficult to read, not ending well
for the opossum).
I wanted to like the book, and in some ways I did. The writing style is quick, conversational, and funny.
But it did not add to my gardening knowledge nor provide a history of tomatoes (I was hoping he'd
mention tomato breeding and how many hybrids are rejected in order to get one perfect tomato – I was
so wrong in what I thought this was going to be!). But that this man seemingly did not seek out advice of
learned professionals or even the crack team of Cornell Master Gardeners who would have been
available to him in his charming upstate NY Town That Time Forgot, is either a sad commentary on his
vanity or poor marketing of the MGs.
Alexander and his wife are exactly the yuppies with two kids that small, rural towns hate to love; with
more money than sense, and all the good intentions and ideals germinated while growing up in the midlate 1960s by hippies and the late Baby Boomers. Honestly, those people are great! I love those people
– I am those people! A lot of good came from that time; thank you Rachel Carson and your disturbing
book Silent Spring, still sadly applicable today.
However, humble gardeners know to seek and adopt proven methods, solid advice and local mentoring.
The book doesn't even hint that the author ever thought he could learn from the local sources – instead
he charges ahead with his own bumbling, ecosystem-crushing methods, while justifying his decisions with
the slimmest of excuses. In response to dousing his yard and veg garden with diazinon (a pesticide
developed to replace DDT, outlawed in US home landscapes in 2004) yet again in order to rid his lawn
of grubs which he thought resulted when he planted four roses that attracted Japanese beetles, he writes
“...I remain a committed environmentalist, using pesticides reluctantly, guiltily, and only as a last resort.”
Too bad he hadn't thought of the biomass within the first six inches of his soil that suffered his wrath, so
that he could have some green grass. What price is paid by such knee-jerk reactions?
The $64 question is finally explained in the last chapter. And I think we gardeners already know, don't do
the math; never do the math! This book reinforces the misinformed ideas that Nature must be
“controlled” and that Man knows “best” how it should be.
Perhaps Alexander has reached better terms with gardening in the decade since writing this book. At
the end, he was diagnosed with a herniated disc in his neck, and knew that he would have to make some
changes to his gardening practices, which I hope include a high dose of tolerance.
I read 'em so you don't have to, unless you want to!
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by Denise Malueg
PAGE 8
Stepping Into Spring...
The PHS PHILADELPHIA FLOWER SHOW is an annual event at the Pennsylvania
Convention Center held March 4th to the 13th. It is the world’s oldest and largest indoor flower
show, attracting more than 260,000 people annually. The Show features large-scale gardens, elaborate
landscapes, and over-the-top floral creations. http://theflowershow.com/
Admission: $27 *All proceeds from ticket sales support the charitable work of PHS including City
Harvest, feeding more than 1,200 families in need in Philadelphia.
MARYLAND HOUSE & GARDEN PILGRIMAGE - http://www.mhgp.org/
QUEEN ANNE’S COUNTY
Saturday, April 30th 2016
TALBOT COUNTY
Saturday, May 14th 2016
QUEEN ANNE’S COUNTY
MASTER GARDENER PLANT SALE
SAVE THE DATE: Saturday, May 7th
9am to 12pm (QAC Extension Office)
*This year I am asking for volunteers to sow vegetable and herb seeds for the sale. I
will provide the materials, just asking YOU to be the grower, please contact me if you
are willing to volunteer for this job! [email protected],.edu
Adkins Arboretum's Fourth Annual Native Garden Tour
KENT COUNTY Saturday, May 21, 2016 10am until 4pm
To volunteer contactAlice Macnow
[email protected]
Phone # 410-778-4275
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Educational Opportunities
UPPER SHORE BEEKEEPING ASSN. MONTHLY MEETING AND TALK
The Upper Eastern Shore Beekeeping Assn (UESBA) will meet on Wednesday, March 9th at the
Kent County Library in Chestertown. The meeting begins at 6:30 pm in the yellow building next to
the Kent County library parking lot., in Chestertown. Mike Embrey, Extension Apiculturist (Ret.)
will be the guest speaker and will talk about European Foul Brood. He will also be available to
answer any questions from the audience.
ONLINE WORKSHOPS 2016
Horticulture Magazine Garden How-To University
http://www.hortmag.com/smart-gardening-workshops
U.S. Botanic Garden Production Facility Open House 2016
Rarely does the public get to see our growing facility, the largest greenhouse complex supporting a
public garden in the United States. The site, completed in 1994, includes 85,000 square feet under
glass, divided into 34 greenhouse bays and
16 environmental zones. In addition to
foliage and nursery crops, you'll see all of
the USBG collection not currently on
display, including orchids, medicinal plants,
carnivorous plants, and rare and
endangered species.
Register for one of the open house
times to get a brief orientation to the
facility, meet the gardeners, ask questions,
and wander through this working
wonderland of plants. Please note: Limit of 50 people per entry time. Light snacks and beverages will
be provided. No registrations will be taken at the door. The Open House ends at 2:30 p.m.
DATE: Saturday, March 12
ENTRY TIMES: 10 a.m., 10:30 a.m., 11 a.m., 11:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m., 1 p.m., 1:30 p.m.
LOCATION: USBG Production Facility
FRIENDS: $5, NON-MEMBERS: $10
Pre-registration required
30TH ANNUAL LAHR SYMPOSIUM - NATIVE PLANTS: GOOD DESIGN
U.S. NATIONAL ARBORETUM, Saturday April 2, 2016, 8:30-3:30
Good design in today’s gardens and landscapes integrates the beautiful with the ecologically
beneficial. Join the nation’s top practitioners of landscape design, ecology, and resource management
to learn how you can apply their approaches, insights, and techniques. Fee: $95 ($76 FONA).
Registration required. Click here for complete symposium details and registration information.
http://www.usna.usda.gov/
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MGs Write: POLLINATORS & NATURAL ENEMIES
Pollinators are getting a lot of good
press these days and, as Master
Gardeners, this doesn't surprise us. But
a lot of folks are not aware of the
critical role these insects play, the
threats they are under and how people
can help increase their population.
Master Gardeners are good at finding
opportunities to bridge this gap and
share their knowledge of pollinators.
Pollinators and natural enemies are
beneficial insects (mostly) that
gardeners and farmers rely on to
maintain healthy and productive crops and plant communities, while also supporting a
diverse population of wildlife – humans included.
Pollinators provide the service of pollination required by a plant to produce its fruit or seed,
usually in return for some delicious nectar and pollen. The main pollinator groups are bees
and wasps, beetles, butterflies and moths, and flies. Bats, birds, the wind and even your dog
wagging through a patch of flowers also provide pollination services.
Natural enemies help gardeners control pests, thereby reducing the need for the use of
pesticides. Natural enemies may be insect predators or parasitoids, but birds and toads that
eat insects may also fit the definition. Predators eat other insects at various stages of their
lifecycle, such as the ladybird beetles that eat aphids
you will read about in a companion article in this
newsletter. Parasitoids, on the other hand, lay eggs
on/in a host insect, which will eventually die when the
young hatch and feed on the host. Some insects lead
double lives as both a pollinator and a natural enemy –
no good bugs or bad bugs, anymore – just bugs! Every
bug has a role to play in the ecosystem.
One third of every bite of food is the result of a
pollination service. Two thirds of the world's crops
rely on pollinators – aside from food, think of textiles
and other natural products. In the U.S., at least 100
crops rely on pollinators, equating to $3 billion of
total annual crop production. Up the food chain, 25%
of birds and mammals feed on fruits and seeds, which
are the result of pollination. Pollination is Big Business
and absolutely essential to life on this planet.
C on t in u e to n e x t p a ge . ..
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MGs Write: POLLINATORS & NATURAL ENEMIES
CONTINUED...
The greatest risks to pollinators are the use of
pesticides and the loss of habitat.
A pesticide is any 'cide that is used to protect the
plant, be it pesticide, insecticide, fungicide, herbicide,
etc. Often, these are synthetic chemicals and may be
systemic, that are taken up by a plant throughout all of
its cells, in the leaves, stems and even the pollen and
nectar. These pesticides may wreak havoc on insects'
nervous systems, killing them or disorienting them so
they cannot return to their nests or hives to care for
their young. Some pesticides may be applied with less
toxicity to pollinators if used prior to blooming or at
certain times of the day when pollinators are not
present. Organic pesticides should be used with care
as well, because they are still used to knock back
threats to a plant. Instead, natural enemies may take
the place of many pesticides, which is why it is
important to attract them to your garden, too.
Gardens that welcome pollinators and natural enemies include a variety of native plants with
blooms across a long period of time, from early Spring through late Fall. These gardens also
have undisturbed areas in which insects can shelter, and a shallow water source from which
they can drink. Some insects typically travel just 200 feet, while others may travel 2 miles,
which means that having a diversity of flower shapes, colors and bloom times within your
garden is important to the health and sustainability
of the whole population.
Plant it and they really will come! And if everyone
plants for pollinators, our backyards and balconies
will link together into a long corridor across the
country, providing pathways and way stations for
insects and migrating birds. We really can not live
without pollinators.
by the P&NE Team of QAC MGs
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MGs Write: THE VIRGINIA FLOWER & GARDEN EXPO
My wife, Kathy, and I were married on Valentine’s Day thirty years ago in
a gazebo in a small fishing camp on the banks of the crystal clear Wekiva
River in Central Florida. We thought we were being clever by setting
February 14th as the date so we couldn’t forget it as we aged and our
memories declined. Unfortunately, over the years we have found
celebrating problematic as all restaurants and hotels are booked on
Valentine’s Day. So our practice has become to celebrate the week
before our actual anniversary.
This year we decided to celebrate by going to the Virginia Flower &
Garden Expo in Virginia Beach over the weekend of February 5th. We
stayed on the beach and certainly didn’t have to deal with crowds. Our
solitary walks on the beach were done in brisk icy winds under steely
gray skies but we enjoyed them nonetheless. It was a bit of a challenge
to find an open restaurant but we succeeded in finding a couple that
were struggling along during the offseason.
We spent Saturday at the Expo and were
very impressed with the show. It was held in the ultra-modern Virginia
Beach Convention Center. Over 100 vendors displayed their goods and
there were many educational offerings. Master Gardeners from Virginia
Beach, Norfolk, Portsmouth, and Chesapeake collaborated on an Ask a
Master Gardener booth that they combined with their winter plant sale.
In conversations with the Master Gardeners manning the booth we
determined that they also have a consolidated plant sale in the Spring.
They are currently attempting to raise funds for a storage space/green
house where they can gather and store their plants between sales. In
addition to the Master Gardeners, the other educational participants
included the Beekeepers Guild of Southeast VA, the Butterfly Society of
Virginia, Buy Fresh Buy Local Hampton, the
Norfolk Botanical Garden, and the Virginia
Native Plant Society.
Each of the three days of the Expo featured speakers who tackled such
topics as Native Trees and Their Flowers, Pollinators, Native Perennials,
Native Medicinal Herbs, Foraging through the Seasons, Mushrooms,
Invasive Plants and Native Alternatives, Reduce/Reuse/Recycle in the
Garden, Grow Wild! How to Create Habitat at Home, and
Vermicomposting! Is it Right for You? In addition, a large section of the
venue was set aside for children’s crafts and activities.
We very much enjoyed the Expo and felt it was time well spent. The
quantity and quality of the educational offerings and the vendors was
very impressive and was a real bargain at $10/person. The Virginia
Flower & Garden Expo for next year will be held at the same venue
from January 27-29th. We would highly recommend it if you want a midwinter getaway next year.
By Jim Persels
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MGs Write: THE VIRGINIA FLOWER & GARDEN EXPO
I am looking forward to Spring! To escape my cold and
dreary landscape I headed to Norfolk on Thursday February
4 for the Virginia Flower and Garden Expo. It was a bit gray,
but a pleasant drive until I ran into rain just south of the
Maryland state line, potential fog on the bridge tunnel and
heavy rain and ponding on the roads in Norfolk. Friday
morning in Norfolk was clear, cold and windy.
My daughter and I headed out to the Expo at the Virginia
Beach Convention Center. We viewed the online schedule
before we left to see what lectures were offered and to
decide which we would like to hear. Knowing nothing about Growing a Tea Garden we selected that
one. (Other options were Native Trees and Flowers, Pollinators and Native Perennials). Our speaker was
Beatrice Hovey, author, teacher and Master Gardener from Virginia Beach.
The tea tree is Camellia sinensis, a native of China that was discovered by the Emperor Shen Nung in
2737 B. C. The tea tree is the source for all Chinese tea: black oolong, green, yellow, and white. The
taste and color differences are the result of processing. If you are interested in growing your own
tea tree, it is hardy to zone 7. There are sources for both seed and plants online. If you choose seed
it can take up to a year for the seed to germinate, then no leaves can be harvested until three years
have elapsed. Established plants can be propagated by layering.
In addition to the lectures, we visited several educational booths and chatted with the Master
Gardeners from Virginia Beach who were manning the activity tables for children. Of course there
were many vendors selling garden ornaments, tools, decorative pots, pavers, fire pits, you name it.
With our discount coupon from their website the Expo was a bargain at $8!
Check out the photos of the Pallet Challenge: attendees voted for their favorite. I thought the loom
was clever, the storage area practical, the trees whimsical. (**Challenge Winner: Trees)
By Karen Wimsatt
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MARCH 2016
Sun
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Training, 5:30-
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April Newsletter Deadline:
March 21, 2016
University of Maryland Extension
5 0 5 R a i lr o a d A v en u e, S u it e 4
Cen tre v i l le M D , 2 1 6 1 7
Phone: (410) 758-0166
Fax: (410) 758-3687
http://extension.umd.edu/queen-annescounty/about
QACMG Website:
http://extension.umd.edu/queen-annescounty/home-gardening
Master Gardener Coordinator,
Queen Anne’s County
The University of Maryland Extension programs are open to any person and will not discriminate against anyone because of
race, age, sex, color, sexual orientation, physical or mental disability, religion, ancestry, national origin, marital status, genetic
information, political affiliation, and gender identity and expression. Equal opportunity employers and equal access programs.
University of Maryland Extension
Queen Anne’s County
505 Railroad Ave.
Suite 4
Centreville, MD 21617
Vision Statement: A healthier world through environmental stewardship
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