By Margaret Bayne, OSU Extension Staff-retired, OSU Master Gardener

PNW Disease Managment Handbook. Image: OSU

History of the PNW Plant Disease Management Handbook. https://bit.ly/2t6AUI3

Realism of Harvard’s Glass Flowers still dazzles. (Tracee M. Herbaugh, phillytrib.com) https://bit.ly/35bSgRV

More on the Harvard Glass flowers: (Photobotanic.com) https://bit.ly/36nZuCs

Soil or dirt? It’s really up to you. (GardenProfessors.com) https://bit.ly/2rxVq3T

Soil myth busting for extension educators: reviewing the literature on soil structure and functionality. (Linda Chalker-Scott, WSU; A.J. Downer, U of CA via NACAA) https://bit.ly/2YCDAZF

Plants emit sounds too high for human ears when stressed out. (Iflscience.com) https://bit.ly/2PzOQlk

The dynamic details of unusual plants captured in singular moments by photographer Helene Schmitz.  Stunning. (Thiscolossal.com) https://bit.ly/2RG8DT4

Growing camouflage. “…there are at least two groups of arthropods that take their camouflage to a whole new level by actively growing miniature gardens on their bodies.”  (indefenseofplants.com) https://bit.ly/36nZTEW

Lichen. Photo: OSU

The unexpectedly weird and beautiful world of lichens.  “Lichens are not what you think they are.  Not plant, not fungus-they are one of a kind.” (Jaymi Heinbuch, MNN.com) https://bit.ly/2P7tCw8

A mushroom is saving millions of bees from a deadly virus. “Researchers suspect the mushroom either boosts their immune system or somehow fights the viruses.” (John Vibes via themindunleashed.com) https://bit.ly/2LHKszQ

Is fertilizer a friend or foe to disease-causing organisms? (Gardenprofessors.com) https://bit.ly/2P8lQSB

Roots. Photo: Linda Chalker-Scott

The myth of fragile roots. (Linda-Chalker-Scott, WSU) https://bit.ly/2rCtXy3

Dung Beetles navigate bia the Milky Way, first known in Animal Kingdom. (Christine Dell’Amore, Nationalgeorgraphic.org) https://bit.ly/2LFEdfE

More on Dung Beetles (VIDEO): The dance of the dung beetle. (Marcus Byrne, Tedtalk, via youtube.com) https://bit.ly/38qaVvo

“Nature has undoubtedly mastered the art of winter gardening and even the most experienced gardener can learn from the unrestrained beauty around them.” 

~Vincent A. Simeone


Happy 2020 Master Gardeners!

Best New Year wishes to the metro area OSU Master Gardeners!  With the official start of winter, we hope you are enjoying the slower pace, with time to reflect and plan for your coming new year!  We hope those plans include how you would like to serve as an OSU Master Gardener. 

Do you plan to volunteer at your usual volunteer venue?  Or will you explore and try something new?  Perhaps you would like to volunteer with the Master Gardener Speakers Guild making presentations on gardening topics? Maybe you will lend a hand and trowel at a chapter Demonstration Garden, offer garden advice at one of the Master Gardener helpline offices, or volunteer at your favorite farmers market? 

There are many opportunities throughout the year!  You can find volunteer openings on CERVIS, with new postings added every month or check in with the three area chapters for opportunities.

We look forward to seeing you in 2020, wearing your OSU Master Gardener hat, sharing your passion for gardening, dispensing reliable gardening advice and serving our community!


2020 Master Gardener Training Begins!

Our annual metro area OSU Master Gardener training is a great opportunity to refresh your knowledge and boost your skills.  This year we are expanding the in-person classes to 8 weeks starting the last week in January and running through March.  All Master Gardeners are welcome to attend training sessions. Each AM or PM session attended counts as 3 hours continuing garden education credit for 2020.

The training sites and days are:

Tuesdays, January 28 – March 17, 9AM to 4PM
Hillsboro United Methodist Church,
168 NE 8th Avenue, Hillsboro

Thursdays, January 30 – March 19, 9AM to 4PM
Museum of the Oregon Territory,
Tumwater room, 3rd floor- 211 Tumwater Drive, Oregon City

Fridays, January 31 – March 20, 9AM to 4PM
Multnomah County Headquarters,
Board chambers, 1st floor – 501 SE Hawthorne Blvd., Portland.

A great line-up of core Master Gardener training subjects will be presented by Margaret Bayne, Chip Bubl, Sally Campbell, Jane Collier, Claudia Groth, Monica Maggio, Weston Miller and Jean R. Natter.  In addition, we are excited to have OSU Extension faculty Neil Bell, Brooke Edmunds and Heather Stoven joining us as presenters.


2020 Master Gardener Training Registration

Thank you for spreading the word about the metro area OSU Master Gardener training!  Registration has been going at a brisk pace!

For the first time in recent memory, the Portland training venue filled after only 2 weeks of open registration!  Registration for the Oregon City and Hillsboro locations has also been strong.  Only a couple dozen class-slots remain.  Urge anyone interested in 2020 MG training to register today to avoid missing an opportunity.  Metro-area Master Gardener website for easy online registration.


‘Active and Certified’ OSU Master Gardener Status for 2020

This month we are updating each Master Gardener’s status in CERVIS for the 2020 season.  A volunteer’s status will remain “Active and Current” in the CERVIS system if the annual requirements have been met.

Those MGs who have fulfilled the annual requirements will receive a 2020 Master Gardener sticker to display on their badges.  See photo.

For a list of the annual requirements.  Please visit the volunteer portal page https://beav.es/ZjK


New Requirements for 2020

As a reminder, there are two new requirements for metro area OSU Master Gardeners in 2020.  The requirements are detailed below:

  1. Youth Safety & Compliance – Oregon State University is committed to offering a physically, psychologically and emotionally safe environment for youth that might attend a Master Gardener event or interact with Master Gardeners serving at a public event. Metro-area Master Gardeners are required to complete the Youth Safety and Compliance training.

    To take the training read the Basic Training (2 pages) and sign the Certification Form. Return the form to the MG program office: 200 Warner-Milne Road, Oregon City, OR 97045 If you would like to sign the Youth Safety & Compliance Certification Form via DocuSign please request the form via this link: https://forms.gle/JMoE6JprpCoxjXW86
  2. Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion training – Key to your role in providing exceptional customer service for the public and a kind and welcoming environment for fellow volunteers, we are requiring that Master Gardeners take part in a new training in the coming year. The goal of this training is to increase your skills to share space, leadership, and power with individuals who bring unique lived experiences, skills and values.

The Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion training will be offered on the following dates in 2020:

  • Tuesday, February 18, 2020 from 9:00am – 12:00pm at the Master Gardener training class in Hillsboro
  • Thursday, February 20, 2020 from 9:00am – 12:00pm at the Master Gardener training class in Oregon City
  • Friday, February 21, 2020 from 9:00am – 12:00pm at the Master Gardener training class in SE Portland
  • Saturday, May 16, 2020 from 9:00am to 12:00pm at Spring Recertification, Clackamas Community College (Gregory Forum). Doors open at 8:00am

Attendance at one of the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion trainings is required to be a certified metro-area OSU Master Gardener, beyond September 30, 2020.  To receive credit for attending, sign-in at the training you attend.


Winter at the Master Gardener Helplines

Winter is a great time to volunteer at the metro-area Master Gardener office helplines.  We get a surprising number of questions from gardeners itching to get out in their gardens. The pace of questions is slower in the winter, so it is a good time to come in, acquaint yourself with the resource library, and maybe even do some detective work regarding your own garden quandaries. Shifts are available on CERVIS or you can email the following coordinators to help you sign-up.

Three OSU Extension Master Gardener volunteers are all smiles while volunteering in the Clackamas Co. Master Gardener helpline office.

Fall Recertification Certificate of Appreciation Recipients