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Biweekly Update From Paula Lupcho, President March 28, 2023

🐰 President’s Message

If you haven’t noticed from all of the volunteer opportunities, Plant Sale is now in full operational mode getting ready for the biggest event in the BCMGA calendar. Lots of opportunities are still available for propagation of plants. And, there is the preparation for the event itself. This is a high-energy, fun event and we get to talk about plants! It takes many volunteers to prepare for it. In one day, we transform the Solar Barn at the Fairgrounds from bare concrete into a gardening paradise—there are plants for a far as you can see. This event has gotten so big that we now use the Floral Courtyard exclusively for our edibles. This is a wonderful way to get to know your fellows MGs, pick up a few plants for your own garden, and really feel a part of this great event. See below for sign-up links to propagation opportunities, including veggie propagation, and plant sale shifts on Friday and Saturday, May 5 & 6. Each one is different.

Alan Taylor still needs to find a few more mentors! This year it will be very easy to be a friendly face for one or two trainees as they transition into the BCMGA community. Please contact Alan ASAP at 541-929-4141 or alantaylor@alyrica.net. The best part is you don’t need to work at the help desk. A crew of desk mentors has already been assembled to do all desk training. See below in Volunteer Opportunities for more information.

I hope everyone saw the message from Jennifer Alexander, Extension Communications Director, in eNews from Elza on Friday about SB 458. “We need to ensure that state legislators continue to hear directly from their constituents—including youth—about the impact of Extension and need for state funding. As one legislator put it to us on Statewides Day, we need to “flood them.” A push over the next few weeks would be helpful, as we head toward the next hearing for the Statewides budget bill that’s set for April 21”. If you haven’t yet contacted your legislators, please take the time to do so. Information about how to contact them can be found below in BCMGA News.


Trainee News & Opportunities


Å NEW! Seed to Supper in the Garden: Volunteers are need to teach an intro gardening class for new gardeners who qualify for food assistance. Instructors and helpers are needed for a two-class series at Willamette Community Garden in Corvallis.

April 8, 10:00-11:30 All volunteers meet to plan

April 22 & 29 Classes are held from 10:00 to 12:00


Å Calling all Volunteers!! 🌿 Sign up to help at BCMGA’s Plant Sale, our biggest fundraiser of the year! Click HERE to choose your job and shift times. Volunteers needed for BOTH DAYS and ALL SHIFTS: Friday, May 5 - SET UP, and Saturday, May 6 - SALE DAY!! Contact Leslie Hauser, Plant Sale Volunteer Coordinator, with questions or if you need help signing up. lesliehauser107@gmail.com, 702-340-6513.


Å Plant Propagation is continuing! Please help the Plant Sale Team by volunteering at one or more of our upcoming dates where we will be potting up perennial starts plus grooming, labeling, and preparing thousands of plants for our upcoming sale. Go to www.signupgenius.com/go/PSTeam to sign up.


Å BCMGA Veggie enthusiasts!

We are ready to start planting veggies at the Philomath High School Greenhouse for the Plant Sale (Saturday, May 6). Sessions are planned (mostly) on Tuesdays (one Thursday) 1:00 - 3:00 pm.

Please sign up for ONE session. This is a pretty popular activity, so we want to share the time.

We'll send out another reminder if needed to fill slots. Questions? Contact Jennifer Klammer, 541-602-0431

Special Announcement


Å NEW! Plant Sale Yard Signs! We'd like to get a lot of yard signs around town for the Plant Sale. If you still have one from the last Plant Sale (check your garage/storage area), please put it out or return it to the Extension Office. Either way, let Bob Smythe know so he can add it to his inventory. We're also looking for new locations for yard signs - if you're willing to host one and live in a high traffic area, please contact Bob Smythe (smytherobert1@gmail.com). We promise to store them until next year so you don't have to.


Å Special Allocations 2023—BCMGA Committees

Committee Chairs, don’t forget that applications are due by March 31 to Jana at jl.tindall@comcast.net. An application form was emailed to all chairs last week. Questions about the process may be directed to Jana Tindall at the email address above. (Policies and Procedures can be found at bentonmg.org in the “Members” tab.)


BCMGA News


Å Board Meeting Update: The April meeting will be on Monday, April 10 from 9 to 11 a.m. This is a Zoom meeting.


Å Annual BCMGA Membership Awards: Is there a Master Gardener who has impressed you with their consistent hard work, helpfulness, creativity, or leadership? Please take time to nominate them for the annual Benton County Master Gardener of the Year or Behind the Scenes Awards. Award descriptions below. DEADLINE Wednesday April 5, 2023 ~ The BCMGA Board of Directors will select awardees at the April 10 meeting.

Contact Membership Secretary Marge Alig (mvictoralig@gmail.com) if you would like a copy in Word. A PDF version is available on the BCMGA website. The nomination can be dropped off at the Extension Office OR emailed to Marge.


Benton County Master Gardener of the Year Award

This annual award recognizes outstanding dedication and service of an OSU Master Gardener for Benton County. The award should be based on years of service, association involvement, leadership with BCMGA, and outstanding and unusual service.

Benton County Behind the Scenes Award

This annual award recognizes an OSU Master Gardener™ who works quietly and unselfishly behind the scenes to further the OSU Master Gardener Program. This is not a person who is out in front working on projects so everyone knows their contributions. It is likely that this person is NOT a committee chair or on the Board of Directors. Rather it is a person who few may actually know the level of their contributions. Please nominate a single individual.


Å Wanted!! Trays for BCMGA Greenhouse Growing

· Drop off sites: Benton County Demo Garden—by yellow shed, 110 SW 53rd St., Corvallis

Giving Garden—by blue dumpster in NW corner of parking lot, 2560 NW Highland Dr., Corvallis

Philomath High School—produce stand on west side of parking lot

2054 Applegate St., Philomath

· For a pick up: Contact Jennifer.Klammer@comcast.net, 541-602-0431


Å MGs Advocate for Funding:

WHAT?

· Ask your Oregon State Senator & State Representative to support OSU Statewide Public Service Programs at $206M.

· MG Program funding is part of this package.

WHY?

· Dollars in the state budget to OSU provide for horticulture faculty and staff, support for MG activities such as Farmers Markets, and MG training.

· Last year 5 counties did not have faculty/staff. In addition, today the single faculty position for Metro’s three counties is vacant.

WHEN?

· Now! — While the legislature is writing the 2023-2025 budget.

HOW? — 3 easy steps

#1 Find your state legislator here:

#2 Write the email

· Identify who you are

· Tell them what you want them to do

· 1-2 sentences about how MGs make an impact/ your love for gardening and educating the public. Share stories about how your service makes your community a better place!

· Restate your request and thank them.

#3. Click <Send>

#4. Notify our OMGA Advocacy Ambassador: Copy Judith with you message. judithkenner@gmail.com


For more information and sample letters, go to https://omga.org/advocacy/


Corvallis

House Speaker Dan Rayfield, House District 16

Senator Sara Gelser Blouin, Senate District 8

sen.saragelser@oregonlegislature.gov

Philomath

Representative David Gomberg, House District 10

rep.davidgomberg@oregonlegislature.gov

Senator Dick Anderson, Senate District 5

sen.dickanderson@oregonlegislature.gov

Albany

Representative Shelly Boshart Davis, House District 15

rep.shellyboshartdavis@oregonlegislature.gov

Senator Sara Gelser Blouin, Senate District 8

sen.saragelser@oregonlegislature.gov



Volunteer Opportunities


Å Calling all Volunteers!! 🌿 Sign up to help at BCMGA’s Plant Sale, our biggest fundraiser of the year! Click HERE to choose your job and shift times. Volunteers needed for BOTH DAYS and ALL SHIFTS: Friday, May 5 - SET UP, and Saturday, May 6 - SALE DAY!! Contact Leslie Hauser, Plant Sale Volunteer Coordinator, with questions or if you need help signing up. lesliehauser107@gmail.com, 702-340-6513.


Å Plant Propagation is continuing! Please help the Plant Sale Team by volunteering at one or more of our upcoming dates where we will be potting up perennial starts plus grooming, labeling, and preparing thousands of plants for our upcoming sale. Go to www.signupgenius.com/go/PSTeam to sign up.

Å BCMGA Veggie enthusiasts! We are ready to start planting veggies at the Philomath High School Greenhouse for the Plant Sale (Saturday, May 6). Sessions are planned (mostly) on Tuesdays (one Thursday) 1:00 - 3:00 pm

Please sign up for ONE session. This is a pretty popular activity, so we want to share the time. We'll send out another reminder if needed to fill slots. Questions? Contact Jennifer Klammer, 541-602-0431



Å A New Day for Mentoring We have a large incoming class of trainees, and they need mentors to welcome them to our Association and to help continue their training as Master Gardeners.

There are 3 options to be a mentor

· Provide a friendly face to welcome your trainee and answer general questions about duties, activities, etc. (no desk training required)

· Desk: a small group of MGs who are comfortable teaching desk procedures and working with the computer, microscope and pH meter

· Remote plant clinics: This includes Master Gardeners who have worked at Farmers Markets, special event plant clinics, and/or are familiar with Ask Extension.

You can choose any one of the three. Thank you, Alan Taylor, 541-929-4141, alantaylor@alyrica.net


Å NEW! Seed to Supper in the Garden: Volunteers are need to teach an intro gardening class for new gardeners who qualify for food assistance. Instructors and helpers are needed for a two-class series at Willamette Community Garden in Corvallis.

April 8, 10:00-11:30 All volunteers meet to plan

April 22 & 29 Classes are held from 10:00 to 12:00

Å Community science: Contribute data to research on gardens, plants, and wildlife. Many projects are remote and on your own schedule. Report the time as “citizen science: indirect”.

Å Various datesPeaceful Valley Seed in North Albany is seeking volunteer presenters for various topics including composting, spring perennials, sustainable landscaping, summer garden maintenance, summer pruning and more. Certified volunteers who are interested may contact the organizer directly: Kimberly Montgomery 541.981.2248 kimberly@groworganic.com Report service as Instructor: Direct.


Å Master Gardener Desk (Office Plant Clinic): The office is open and there are questions coming in from the public. Volunteers are encouraged to return to the desk, in particular certified MGs comfortable with the pH meter and the microscope are needed. Sign up for shifts to answer client questions or practice skills. You can either work at the desk or in the Extension conference room if you’d like more space. https://www.signupgenius.com/go/20f0a45a9ac29a7f85-benton36#/


Find more opportunities on the Benton Volunteer Opportunities Page.


Continuing Education Opportunities

Å Anytime. Recordings of Zoom Master Gardener training from Curry County with guest lecturers from OSU and beyond, are available for any volunteer to take as continuing education. Trainees are also welcome to watch and supplement their classes. More links are being added weekly, see the current list HERE.


Å Growing Together – Soils & Cover Crops: March 31, 1:00pm – 2:00pm, Linn County Master Gardener Association Demonstration Garden in the Fairgounds, 3700 Knox Butte Rd E, Albany


Å Growing Oregon Gardeners –

April 11--Global Gardening: Asian Vegetables for Pacific Northwest Gardens, 12:00 p.m. -1:00 p.m., Zoom. Learn more & RSVP at beav.es/SJk

Watch the recorded 2022 sessions.


Å Public Seed Library Lecture Series: This series of lectures will occur in March through July (Wednesdays, 6:00pm to 7:00pm) at the Corvallis Library, 645 NW Monroe Ave., Corvallis. Upcoming Lectures.

· April 6—“Starting seeds inside, direct seeding, and transplanting”

· April 12—“Row covers, vertical gardening, and irrigation”

· May 4—“Thinning, weeding, and succession planting”

These lectures count toward continuing education hours and trainee Garden Labs.


Extension News


Å New! Introducing a new award: Growing & Belonging. What does it mean to grow our work inclusively? To create an environment where everyone belongs? Let’s find out, together, with our new Growing & Belonging County, and Statewide Awards. Read the update from OSU EXTENSION MASTER GARDENER PROGRAM NEWS.


Å New! One day, everyone together. On April 26, 2023, Master Gardeners and supporters will come together to show our belief in the Master Gardener program and Oregon State University’s Dam Proud Day. This 24-hour period is dedicated to celebrating the accomplishments of the Oregon State community, including supporting Master Gardeners, and stretching ourselves toward our aspirations.

On one day, can you imagine what we could do together?

Here’s how you can help NOW.

  1. Help us tell the Master Gardener story. Share YOUR story by participating in our storytelling campaign. Reach out to LeAnn at leann.locher@oregonstate.edu to receive 3 simple questions for you to answer, and then send in a photo. We’ll be sharing these over the coming weeks to highlight all that Master Gardeners do. Your stories tell the story of the Master Gardener program!

  2. Follow OSU Extension Master Gardener on social media. www.facebook.com/OSUMG on Facebook and @mastergardenersOSU on Instagram. Share our stories and posts about Dam Proud Day with your friends and followers.

  3. SHOW UP on April 26th and make a donation online signaling your support for the Master Gardener program. It’s all online, all on one day.

On one day, we can show up for gardening and Master Gardeners in Oregon!


LeAnn Locher (she/her)

Statewide Master Gardener Outreach Coordinator

Food Hero Gardening Coordinator

Oregon State University | Extension

Cell 503-701-1044


Å Coffee chats are back for 2023! If you are a board member, committee chair, or engaged volunteer, this is a chance to visit informally with program staff (Elza). Learn more and sign-up.


Å Volunteer Reporting System updates. The statewide Master Gardener volunteer reporting system is now more secure. It also has a new look and feel. Please bookmark the new site: : https://vrs.osumg.org/ When you log in, follow the steps to update your password. Tech Support is at https://vrs.osumg.org/help/ (Trainees – please wait on making accounts until prompted – thanks!)


Å The Grow This! Oregon Garden Challenge, Oregon State University Extension’s statewide seed giveaway, returns for a fourth year in 2023 featuring a continued partnership with the Oregon Potato Commission.

Starting Feb. 6, individuals and households, schools, and groups can sign up to receive an individual/household seed kit, group kit or seed-starting teacher classroom kit through the mail. https://oregonstate.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_4VO6D4sAW7Wk9qC

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