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A thank you to the master gardeners

I would like to take the opportunity to express my sincere appreciation to all of the Master Gardeners in Hubbard and Becker County who volunteer their time and horticultural talents to area residents and communities. It has been my pleasure to work with people who are alive with passion for something they love, and as I retire from Extension I want to recognize and thank you for your achievements and contribution to our communities! A special thanks to Linda Perrine at the Becker County Extension Office for her dedication to Extension and Master Gardener activities.

Master Gardeners are involved in: answering phone inquiries concerning home horticulture, teaching classes, holding workshops, horticultural tours, guiding and supervising community plantings and school gardens, teaching and judging projects or exhibits, writing newspaper columns and horticulture newsletters, holding plant clinics, and working with horticultural therapy. Master Gardeners truly increase the outreach of University of Minnesota Extension.

The Master Gardener program in Minnesota is administered at the State Office in the Minnesota located at the Landscape Arboretum, a part of the Department of Horticultural Science at the University of Minnesota. Master Gardeners attend a core training of interns consisting of 48 classroom hours of training conducted by state specialists and extension educators. Master Gardeners are required to volunteer for 50 hours the first year and 25 hours annually thereafter. Thank You for doing a Super Job for your County!

Irrigation, pesticide, forage events ahead

• 2009 Crop Update and Private Pesticide Applicator Recertification Workshop: Jan. 27, 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. with lunch break, at the Otter Tail County Office Building, 118 North Main, New York Mills.

Attendance for the entire program is required to obtain recertification. The crops update session concludes with the lunch sponsored by the Minnesota Soybean Growers Association. Only applicators requiring recertification will be required to stay for the entire program.

• CMIC Irrigation clinic: Jan. 29, 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., at the VFW on Hwy 10, New York Mills. This year's clinic will feature two presentations: "A Whole New World...The Economy Breakdown, Farm Bill, Input Buying & Market Update" by Joe Burgard, marketing specialist with Ag Country Farm Credit Services; and "A Review of the Bio-Fuels Industry in Minnesota...Gasification, Biomass, Residues and Crops needed for Bio-fuels," by Bob Schafer, director, Central Lakes Ag Center in Staples.

Additional topics related to irrigation, agriculture, and informational resources and packets will also be presented during the day. A CMIC membership is $10 for the year.

• 2009 Private Pesticide Applicator Recertification Workshop: Jan. 30, 1 p.m. to 4:30 p.m., at Minnesota State Community & Technical College, Room C103, 900 Highway 34 East, Detroit Lakes. Attendance for the entire program is required to obtain recertification.

• 2009 Minnesota Forage Days: Feb. 11, 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., at the Club House Hotel (formerly the Holiday Inn), Highway 10 East, Detroit Lakes. The program focus is forage production, with topics on grasses, alfalfa, forage fertilization, forage insect pests and speaker panel for questions and answers.

Program presenters include Jerry Cherney from Cornell University and Paul Peterson, forage agronomist from the University of Minnesota in St. Paul. Regional and local U of M Extension personnel will also take part in the program. There is a $25 charge for the program that includes a program proceedings and the noon meal.

For more information on any of these programs, please contact me: Will Yliniemi, Extension Educator; at the Hubbard (218.732.3391) or Becker (218.846.7328) Extension Offices; by cell phone at 1-218-252-1042; or by email at