Monday, August 3, 2009

What I Learned - Days 9-10

As you can tell by the lack of posting the last few days, I've been busy. It's time to catch up.

Thursday, at the last seminar day of the Jefferson County Master Gardeners course, I learned:
Ideal soils contain 50% solid materials and 50% pore space. To improve pore space and water retention, till 3 inches of expanded shale into 3 inches of organic matter.
Once a plant has a virus, it always has it. Destroy it.
Integrated pest management is critical to the health of plants AND the environment. IPM is a strategy that avoids or prevents pest damage with minimum adverse impact to human health, environment and non-target organisms. The misuse of chemicals is a huge problem. More on this later...

The last day, we were supposed to meet at the Jefferson County Master Gardeners Test Garden at the airport but the weather had other ideas. The rain was heavy, so the morning was cancelled. Still,I sloshed around for a while, looking at the garden where I will be volunteering at least 20 hours of my time for the next few months. I learned the test garden includes a greenhouse, rainfall water harvesting system and composting. The more I learn about the Master Gardener program, the more I realize what a great resource it is to the area. This week, I'll post more about the program.

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