An important part of being a Master Gardener is staying current on the latest horticultural science.  With that in mind, OSU Extension has developed a webinar series to supplement other classes you may have taken this year.  This year, the webinars will focus on Integrated Pest Management (IPM) and each topic is presented by OSU experts.  Remember, you need at least 10 hours of approved education by October 31 to be recertified.  Each webinar in this series is approved for 1 hour of continuing education.

What is a webinar?  A webinar is a seminar that is presented over the internet.  The presenter(s) will show slides and photos while they are speaking on their topic.  There is a chat box to enter your questions.  Each webinar will be ~40 minutes long and followed by a moderated Q&A session.

How do I participate? Click on the graphic below which will open a PDF.  Then you can click on the links for more details and to register.  There is no cost to participate.  If you can’t attend the live webinar, a recording will be available at a later date.


Interesting find during the first Plant Problem Walk of the season for Linn & Benton County Master Gardeners.  I had pre-scouted problems at the Oak Creek Center for Urban Horticulture and identified rust on this Oregon Grape (Mahonia aquifolium).

When we came back a week later for the tour the underside of the new leaves were covered with adult whiteflies! (Resource from the PNW Insect Management Handbook)

Here are a closeup of an adult and eggs taken with my new toy, I mean USB microscope.

Caught this one in action unfolding it’s new wings:

The first 2017 Garden Pest Update for the mid-Willamette Valley has some interesting finds.  This episode was filmed at the Oak Creek Center for Urban Horticulture on the OSU Campus.  Scroll down for resources on the problems mentioned in the video.

Sunburn on Rhododendron

Dealing with thistle: a perennial & hard to manage weed

Aphid Management Guidelines

Rust on Oregon Grape (Mahonia aquifolium)


Not mentioned in the video but fun finds during the recent MG Plant Problem Walk:

Ash Anthracnose

Whitefly adult and eggs on new foliage of Oregon Grape (left). (Close up photos coming soon! New: Check out the blog post for closeup & video)



Interesting example of communicating research results to different audiences:

The original research paper studying genetics of tomato flavor

—–> The article for a science-minded (but not expert) audience 

—–> The general popular press article

—–>The video (What do you think about how they planted the tomato seed? I cringed a little bit!)

As a Master Gardener, what format(s) would you like to see more of?

Ah, summer- the season of university field days.  These half-day events are a way for growers to directly connect with Oregon State University agricultural researchers.  Field days are actually held in fields-usually at an OSU research farm or an Oregon Agricultural Experiment Station.  Researchers lead tours to describe the latest results from their trial fields and demonstrate the latest equipment advances.

I was lucky to attend the strawberry, blueberry and ornamental plant breeding field days earlier this summer.  Most of the information presented is for the commercial grower (think large scale harvesting equipment, pesticide regulations, etc.).  But, there is quite a bit of information that you can use in your own garden, too.  It’s interesting to observe new cultivars that haven’t been released for sale at local garden centers, yet.  Key takeaways relevant to the home gardener are captured in the following short (<3 min) videos.  Enjoy!


OSU Extension has two free publications available for home gardeners interested in fire-resistant plantings.



Fire-resistant Plants for Home Landscapes by Amy Jo Detweiler & Stephen Fitzgerald

Available as a pdf.  Summary of this 48 page publication: As homeowners continue to build in the wild and urban interface, they must take special precautions to protect their homes. One way to do this is to create a defensible space around the home, and one important factor can be using fire-resistant plants in landscaping. While taking actions to create a defensible space do not ensure that your home will survive a wildfire, they substantially increase the chances. This publication provides a diverse list of plants that are both fire resistant and attractive.




em9103_1Fire-resistant Landscape Plants for the Willamette Valley by Brooke Edmunds, Barb Fick & Paula Lupcho

Available as a mobile app for iOS & Android (eReader plant list also available).  This app is a local supplement to the main publication, Fire-resistant Plants for Home Landscapes (link above).  Summary: The Willamette Valley is known for mild, wet winters, but summer droughts leave the valley as vulnerable to wildfires as drier areas of the state. Homeowners can decrease the potential for damage to their property from a wildfire by using fire resistant plants in landscaping. No plant is fire-proof, but some are considered fire resistant. This publication highlights fire-resistant plants that thrive in Willamette Valley growing conditions. It provides a diverse list of plants by category: groundcovers, perennials, woody shrubs and vines, and trees.




Additional publications related to wildfire prevention on forested land and/or larger acreages can be found by searching at


Slides & Resources from 6/18/2016 presentation in Lane County for the Home Orchard Management class series.  This presentation focuses on the fundamentals of pest & disease management for home orchard production.  Emphasis is on IPM and introducing Extension resources.

Slide set:  Slide deck (online show at Slide Share)


Cultivar Susceptibility to select diseases from PNW Disease Handbook (Apple, Cherry, Hazelnut, Pears)

OSU Extension publication: Managing Diseases & Insects in Home Orchards

OSU Extension catalog: Fruit & Nuts category

Online Phenology & Degree-day Models

PNW Handbooks (Diseases, Insects, Weeds)