Master Gardeners Announce Workshops for the Home Gardener, Fall 2012

Native Plants for Fall Appeal- Walk and Talk

Our favorite native 10’s for fall interest: 10 perennials, 10 shrubs, 10 trees. Tour the on-site native plant teaching garden, then come inside to learn more about our favorites. We will focus on perennials and present those that are drought tolerant, low maintenance, non-aggressive and provide abundant fall color and interest.

Suzanne Baron and J.W. Wistermayer

Wednesday, September 12, 6:00 – 8:00 pm, Extension Office


Puzzled by Pruning, Co-sponsored with the University of Delaware Botanic Gardens

Solve your puzzle. This course will demystify when to prune, what equipment to use and which techniques are most effective.  We will display pruning tools and demonstrate proper pruning techniques using material supplied by the UDBG.

John Ritterson

Tuesday, September 18, 7:00 – 9:00 pm, Fischer Greenhouse


Great Trees of New Castle County- FIELD TRIP

From Blackbird to Centreville, New Castle County hosts a terrific variety of big trees. Join us for an informative and fun adventure. We’ll start with a colorful presentation and introduction to the tree specimens, and then it’s all aboard the UD van for visits to five different “jackpot” sites. There will be plenty of walking as we discover and admire some of these magnificent

living tree specimens, so wear comfortable clothing.

Bring your own lunch. Snacks and water will be provided. Expected duration: 5 hours. Limited to 12 participants.

Rob Medicus

Saturday, September 29, 10:00 am – 3:00 pm, Field trip will begin at the Extension Office


Gardening for Winter Interest

Why stop gardening in November? Create a colorful winter landscape to keep you humming ’til spring.

Jane Murphy and Eva Rotmann-Oehler

Tuesday, October 2, 6:00 – 8:00 pm, Extension Office


Water Conservation- Make Every Drop Count!

Floods are more severe. Droughts are more frequent. Discover techniques to save and use rainwater in your own backyard. Learn about permeable surfaces, rain barrels and rain gardens, gutter placement, plant selection and more.

Eva Rotmann-Oehler

Thursday, October 4, 6:00 – 8:30 pm, Extension Office


Backyard Habitat

Gardening for Wildlife – bring your garden alive and make it a sanctuary for you and for wildlife! Learn basic, sustainable principles for taking your landscape to the next level.

Nancy Bell

Monday, October 8, 7:00 – 9:00 pm, Extension Office


The Value of Trees in your Landscape

Whether you want to add trees or already have trees in your landscape, come learn why, how and where trees enhance the ecological, visual and economic value of your property. Learn tree anatomy, function, selection, placement and maintenance for a landscape that supports your welfare and that of the wildlife we depend upon.

Susan Foster

Tuesday, November 13, 6:30 – 9:00 pm, Extension Office

For more information, and to register, please contact our Extension Office at (302) 831-COOP.


Youth Vegetable Garden Project Receives Grant from Master Gardeners

On June 19th, a New Castle County Master Gardener School Grant was awarded to Project Leader Nicole Freedman and her YMCA of Delaware youth gardening project located in two areas in New Castle County.  Rockwood Park is one of two sites for the youth gardens.  Ms. Freedman has organized lessons to coordinate with the gardens in the areas of nutrition, science, math, and literacy. Master Gardener Youth Education Committee Chair Mary Fontinha, and Carrie Murphy,  Extension Educator, Cooperative Extension University of Delaware, awarded the grant.  Also in attendance were Sharon Kaplan, Director of Community Relations, YMCA of Delaware and Dena Kirk of Rockwood Park.   Information is available on the New Castle County Master Gardener’s website:  http://ag.udel.edu/nccmg .


Workshops and Special Events for the Home Gardener, Summer 2012

Open House and Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Walk and Talk in the Native Plant Teaching and Demonstration Garden

Wednesday, June 20, 6-8 p.m. • Free

Join IPM Extension Specialist Dr. Brian Kunkel, Horticulture Educator Carrie Murphy, and the Master Gardeners in the Native Plant Teaching and Demonstration Garden for a plant, pest, and beneficial insect walk.

Green Invaders

Thursday, July 12, 6-8 p.m.

Rob Medicus • $15

What are those vines growing in my back yard? Are those flowers in the woods I see, weeds? Learn about the plants that have “invaded” Delaware from other continents, and why you should care.  This workshop begins with an introduction to the invasive plants and finishes with a relaxing and informative plant walk on the James F. Hall trail behind the Cooperative Extension office.

Pollinators in the Garden

Tuesday, August 14, 4-6 p.m.

Susan Foster and Jane Murphy • $15

How does your garden grow? A so-so performance may mean that you need the additional assistance of nature’s pollinators – hummingbirds, bees, bats, butterflies, and beetles. Learn how pollination takes place and how to attract beneficial native pollinators to your home garden. Workshop will include a tour of the Vegetable Teaching and Demonstration Garden.

Day in the Garden

Saturday, August 25, 1-3 p.m. • Free, and for the entire family!

Master Gardener and Master Food Educators will be available in the Vegetable Teaching and Demonstration Garden to answer questions and share a taste of the harvest. 

Registration is required; payment collected at the door. Contact our Extension Office

302-831-COOP, or e-mail Carrie Murphy, cjmurphy@udel.edu, to register.

 In the event of inclement weather, visit our website for notice of cancellation https://ag.udel.edu/nccmg.  All workshops/events are held at the Extension Office.


Growing Vegetables?


Need Gardening Help? Call the Garden Line (302) 831-8862!

New Castle County Master Gardeners are here to help answer your gardening questions.  Call the Garden Line at (302) 831-8862!


2012 Workshops for the Home Gardener Announced

To register for a Spring Workshop, please download the workshop brochure and registration form from our website, complete, and mail to the New Castle County Cooperative Extension Office.

Puzzled by Pruning?


Co-sponsored with the University of Delaware Botanic Gardens                                                                            

Solve your puzzle. This course will demystify when to prune, what equipment to use and which techniques are most effective. We will display pruning tools and demonstrate proper pruning techniques using material supplied by the UDBG.

John Ritterson, Tuesday, March 6, 7-9 p.m., Fischer Greenhouse

Growing Vegetables at Home– Beginner and Intermediate Workshops     

$15 each

Would you like to grow your own vegetables and experience the fresh taste of your own harvest?  Our beginner workshop is for those who are planning their first garden. We will discuss site selection, soil amendments, vegetable varieties, and other topics that will help you get started.  The intermediate workshop is for the gardener that wants to take production to the next level. We will provide a general overview of growing vegetables, and discuss ways to extend the growing season, succession planting, how to control weeds, diseases, insects, and more. 

Clyde Roberts, Wednesday, March 7 OR Wednesday, March 28, 7-9 p.m., Extension Office

A Virtual Tour of MG Gardens


Join Master Gardeners (MGs) in a virtual tour of their gardens.  In this light-hearted workshop, MGs will take you on a pictorial tour of their very different garden spaces.  They will reveal their favorite plants, “don’t ever plant” plants, and gardening successes and failures.  Along the way, these MGs will share valuable gardening tips and discuss everything from backyard composting to garden design.  Together, they have nearly 100 years of experience gardening in Delaware.

Susan Amadio, Suzanne Baron, Judy Hyden, and Lois Tanzilli, Thursday, March 8, 6-8 p.m., Extension Office                                                                                                                       

Starting Vegetables and Flowers from Seed


This class is designed for the novice gardener.  Learn techniques, and discover tips, to start and grow plants from seed.  There’s nothing better than growin’ your own fresh vegetables and flowers.  Be prepared to get your hands dirty!  Hetty Cumba and Pat Jackson, Monday, March 12, 9-9 p.m., Fischer Greenhouse



Learn how to grow everyone’s vegetable garden favorite! Participants will learn techniques to improve the quality and yield of their tomato plants.  We will discuss site selection, tomato varieties, seed sources, starting, transplanting, fertilizing, staking and more. Come prepared with your questions. This workshop is for both beginners and experienced gardeners who want to learn more.   Clyde Roberts, Thursday, April 5, 7-9 p.m., Extension Office

Backyard Composting


Create an earth friendly garden through composting. Learn easy methods to recycle kitchen and garden waste to improve your soil and grow healthier plants.  Gail Hermenau, Saturday, April 7, 1-3 p.m., Extension Office 

Vegetable Gardening in Containers


Can you grow a successful, vibrant, and productive vegetable garden in pots? Yes, you can!  Let a Master Gardener teach you how to set-up and maintain your new, and contained, garden.  Vegetable selection, pairing, set-up, care and maintenance will be discussed.  Marta Kessinger, Thursday, April 12, 6-8 p.m., Extension Office

Colorful Containers 


A hands-on, messy workshop and you can keep the plants!  Bring gardening gloves and a 12 inch (diameter) container to learn the basics for container planting with annual ornamental plants.  JW Wistermayer, Monday, April 30, 7-9 p.m., Extension Office     

Beneficial Insects, Integrated Pest Management (IPM) & their Role in your Garden       


Beneficial insects play an important role in Integrated Pest Management.  Proper identification of the bugs in your backyard is key to successful management of your gardens with minimal harm to the environment.  Learn to use chemical control as a last resort, not the first defense, and learn who your friends are.  Frank Ebright, Wednesday, May 2, 6-8 p.m., Extension Office     


Open Houses in the Native Teaching Garden, FREE, Spring date:  Wednesday, May 16, 6-8 pm

Summer date:  Wednesday, June 20, 6-8 pm, Extension Office, Native Teaching Garden

Garden Days:  Master Gardeners will be working in the Native Teaching Garden on the 2nd and 4th Wednesdays of the month from April through September. Master Gardeners will be available on these days between the hours of 9 a.m. to noon to answer any questions.

Upcoming Summer Events: Stay tuned for workshops, tours, and other special events to focus on Integrated Pest Management (IPM), Growing Vegetables, Native (and invasive) Plants, and more.



Community and School Garden Information Session, Saturday March 3

An information session designed for educators, community members, and gardeners starting or maintaining a community or school garden.  Information session will highlight successful, local garden projects, and provide information to help you in your community or school garden. Presenters include the University of Delaware, Delaware Department of Agriculture, Delaware Center for Horticulture, and Healthy Foods for Healthy Kids.

When: Saturday, March 3, 9 am – 12 pm

Where: College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, 531 South College Avenue, Newark, Delaware, Townsend Hall, Room 132

For directions visit: http://ag.udel.edu/

Please call or e-mail to register, Carrie Murphy (302) 831-2506, cjmurphy@udel.edu

$5 at the door

Bring your own mug for coffee!



Winter Workshops for the Home Gardener Announced

Spotlight on the Cabbage Family:  Introducing King Cole, January 24, 7 p.m., Rick Judd, $15

This is the first workshop in a series, The Spotlight Series, which will feature families of vegetables.  Introducing King Cole features the Cabbage family—collards, kale, broccoli, cabbage and more —and will include cultural information, growing tips, and recipes that will convince you to eat more of these nutritious vegetables! 

Vines and Espaliers, January 25, 7 p.m., Tom Maddux, $15

Vertical gardening is fun and can produce desirable results.  Vines and espaliers are often what are missing, learn how to add height to your garden, and bring the flowers closer to your nose.

Downsize your Garden, February 1, 7 p.m., Anne Boyd, Dee Benson, Melora Davis, and Carmela Simons, $15

Do you need to downsize your garden?  By presenting their experiences with reducing the size of their gardens and creating low maintenance landscapes, Master Gardeners will help you to think about ways in which you can shrink your garden and create a landscape that you can enjoy.

Cooking Spices—Their Origins, and the Trip to your Kitchen , February 9, 6 p.m., Frank Ebright, $15

Ever wonder where the spices in the rack come from?  Discover the plant origins of your favorite cooking spices.  We will discuss how they are grown and processed, and how they end up in your kitchen.  Reaching for the spice jar will be like taking a mini-vacation.

Prepare your Landscape for Spring, February 21, 7 p.m., Frank Ebright and Rob Medicus, $15

Are you prepared for Spring?  Frank and Rob will help take the guess work out of your Spring to-do list and discuss topics such as landscape clean-up, plant pruning, insect and disease monitoring and control, early vegetable and ornamental plantings, and lawn maintenance.       

Registration is required; payment collected at the door. Contact our Extension Office 302-831-COOP, or Carrie Murphy, Horticulture Educator, cjmurphy@udel.edu to register.

In the event of inclement weather visit our website for notice of cancellation(s).


Successful Fall Season in the 4-H Garden at Nemours

This November, Master Gardeners and 4-Hers joined forces to harvest and clean up in the 4-H garden at Nemours Mansion and Gardens.  With a garden in summer and fall, the 4-Hers grew everything from peppers and tomatoes, to brussel sprouts, collards, and cabbage.  As another successful season came to an end, we reflected on the pounds and pounds of fresh produce donated to the Food Bank (final number still to come), several blue ribbons at the State Fair, and finally constructing a fence that kept the groundhogs out!


Master Gardeners Donate Nearly 400 Pounds of Fresh Produce to the Food Bank

This year the MGs’ Vegetable Teaching and Demonstration Garden donated nearly 400 pounds of fresh produce to the Food Bank of Delaware.  This garden, started in 2008 features four 4’X8’ raised beds, a tomato border, blueberries, raspberries, and a perennial border planted to attract beneficial insects and pollinators to the garden.  Alongside a compost demonstration site, this garden  is for demonstration, and used regularly as an outdoor classroom for workshops and other purposes.  ALL of the garden’s harvest is donated to the Food Bank of Delaware.

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