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E-News May 2010
In this issue:
Out and About
Log-in on to AOLCP Search
Northeastern IPM Center
Opportunities for AOLCPs
Market yourself as a NOFA AOLCP
Also of Interest
Become a Guest Blogger
Reaccreditation Responsibilities
Current Credit Opps
New editor

Out and About ...

Award-Winning Garden Author Integrates Organic Landscaping

By Kathy Litchfield



Photo by  Susan Johann
Roxbury, CT - Tovah Martin is converting her front lawn into a garden. While perhaps labeled radical in some circles, the award-winning garden writer, author and lecturer sees it as the next step in a lifelong journey of learning and sharing knowledge. 

 "Every time I speak or write, I try to put a little something about organics into the dialogue, and I hope to do it more and more," said the new AOLCP (CT course, '10), who already enjoys a large meadow in her backyard, and is adding orchard trees, and an herb garden to the flourishing vegetables, tropicals, perennials and berries surrounding her home. She also raises Saanen goats. 

 Martin, who called herself "an avid (verging on obsessed) gardener indoors and outside," has authored numerous books and articles, including the hot-off-the-press The New Terrarium (Clarkson Potter/Random House, 2009), which she was thrilled to have recommended for summer reading by Dominique Browning in the New York Times Book Review.

In May of 2008 Martin was awarded the Sarah Chapman Francis Medal for "outstanding literary achievement" by The Garden Club of America, and in 2005 was named one of the top 10 most influential educators in gardening by People, Places and Plants magazine.

She has authored award-winning gardening books including Tasha Tudor's Garden and View from a Sketchbook: Nature through the Eyes of Marjolein Bastin. She is the garden editor for the The Litchfield County Times, has published articles in Country Gardens, La Vie Claire, Nature's Garden, Garden Design, Country Living, O - The Oprah Magazine, Victoria, Rescue, The New York Times, Connecticut Magazine, Connecticut Cottages & Gardens, Hobby Farms, The Heirloom Gardener as well as many other national publications; and was an editorial producer and frequent guest on the PBS television series "Cultivating Life."
Martin also lectures throughout the country on terrarium gardens, stewardship, preservation, bulbs, fragrance, embracing nature and gardening, "always sharing the knowledge learned from the land and other gardeners," she said.

She teaches via the Rhode Island Master Gardeners, the Massachusetts Master Gardeners and for The Garden Club of America; and is doing terrarium making workshops throughout the country, she has staged workshops in Terrain in Philadelphia, the Fall Home Show in Columbus, Ohio, The Garden House Expo in Atlanta, GA, the Hartford Library system, and the Lori Warner Studio in Chester, CT, as well as at elementary schools and senior centers.  "When I teach master gardeners I specialize in indoor gardening and suggest organic practices," said Martin, who took the 5-day accreditation course to bring her education "up to date."
 "A lot of emphasis has been put on organic gardening on the food level - but that's just one aspect of the organic movement. The concept needs to infiltrate much more broadly, and it's the duty of the press to open the public's eyes to these issues," she said. "The course definitely sharpened my focus. This will be reflected in my own garden and in everything I write."  

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How to log-in at AOLCP Search...

Our newly designed website is a huge improvement over its predecessor.  However, we have noticed that  many AOLCPs have had difficulty signing in.


AOLCP Search log in

On the upper right hand side of the home page is a "Sign In" feature, but that is NOT where to log in as an AOLCP.Instead, look to the left, below "Home" to the box that says "For Professionals."  At the bottom of the list is "AOLCP Search."  Click on "AOLCP Search"  to open the page where you should click on "log-in."

The Log-in feature is just below the word "Care" in the title.  When you click on "Log-In" you will see "My AOLCP account" on the next page.  Please log in there, with the user name and password that was sent to you earlier.  Here again is a link to the primer, so that you have it handy.

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Northeastern IPM Center

The Organic Land Care Program currently receives funds from Northeastern Integrated Pest Management (IPM), and CT NOFA has also been a recipient of IPM funds.


The Northeastern Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Center, which helps organic  growers, was left out of next year's federal budget. The Center funds $1 million worth of projects annually in our region. Here's a sampling from recent years:

--testing tomato lines that resist late blight and early blight in organic growing
--documenting strawberry growing techniques that organic growers currently use and need;
--using organic methods, such as protein diets and pasture rotation, to prevent ewes and
lambs from contracting parasites;
--testing organic-approved insecticides for efficacy against potato leafhopper;
--discovering whether a double crop of winter grain and short-season corn could help
organic dairy producers to manage weeds;
--improving crop production by combining sustainable soil practices with reducing
--exploring season-long use of horticultural oil on Vinifera grapevines.

They are asking that those interested in integrated pest management and the Northeastern IPM Center to contact their congressional representatives to support the services of the IPM Center.     


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Opportunities for AOLCPs
  The Ecological Landscaping Association (ELA) and the Massachusetts Watershed Coalition invite you to explore the possibilities of improved water quality in local rivers and streams. This Eco-Tour will show the successful implementation of rain gardens, tree box filters, bio-retention areas, and other practices that improve the water quality of Monoosnoc Brook in Leominster.

Rain Gardens in Successful Stormwater Management
Thursday, May 20,2010
4:30 PM to 8:00 PM  
Tour Starts at Doyle Conservation Center

325 Lindell Ave, Leominster, MA
$20 ELA Member or $25 Non-Member 

For more information: ela.info@comcast.net or (617)436-5838

  New Haven, CT - Lecture on Tree Survival and Response to Injury, Infection, and Environmental Change.  Speaker is Dr. Kevin T. Smith, a world renowned plant physiologist.
On Friday, May 21st, 2010, with a tea at 10:30 and the lecture at 11:00.

Lecture will be at the Jones Auditorium, The Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station,

123 Huntington St., New Haven, CT   No fee.


For more information call 203- 974-8500     or go to www.ct.gov/caesback to top

 A Reminder to market yourself as a NOFA AOLCP

The NOFA OLC Program has written a template press release that you can send to your local newspapers, magazines, town publications and other media outlets, announcing your accreditation. The press release has all the information needed to explain the program and its benefits, and all you have to do is fill in your own business information.  If you are a NEW AOLCP (accredited for the first time in 2010): To access the press release, for new AOLCPs click HERE. If you were accredited before 2010, click HERE.  To download the file to edit, once you have found the document, click on "File", then "Download" and then choose "Word".  This should allow you to tailorthe press release in Microsoft Word.  If you need help or have questions, please call the office at (203) 888-5146. We'll also be happy to send the release out to your local media for you, provided you email us the email contact information of the media where you would like it sent.


 Also of Interest...

 Compost equipment for sale - contact AOLCP Jeff Sullo by email.   

Compost teaTank Sprayer set-up up (170 gallon tank, 5.5 hp Honda engine w/ Centrifugal Pump Kit.  In excellent condition, and a
Bobolator ACT Brewer.  

 In New York -The Neighborhood Network reported the following:
The School Grounds Pesticide Ban Bill (S4983-Foley/A07937-Englebright) has passed the New York State Senate. This legislation will protect children throughout New York State from unnecessary exposure to toxic pesticides on playgrounds and ball fields at their schools and day care.
Thank you to all our members and friends who contacted their State Senators in support of the bill.

 Gabion Walls - can be used in landscape construction, or for decorative purposes.The following website has some interesting information and photographs of gabion walls. Wikipedia's definition of gabion wall is:  "Gabions (from Italian gabbione meaning "big cage"; from Italian gabbia and Latin cavea meaning "cage") are cages, cylinders, or boxes filled with soil or sand that are used in civil engineering, road building, and military applications. For erosion control caged riprap is used. For dams or foundation construction, cylindrical metal structures are used. In a military context, earth or sand-filled gabions are used to protect artillery crews from enemy fire."    http://greayer.com/studiog/?p=4507  

  Bee walls- are a great option for those clients that want to help out our pollinators, and particularly the native bees.  Take a look at this informative site.  http://greayer.com/studiog/?p=4529

 Report ecological effects of pesticides - the following web site can be used by beekeepers to report bee kills from possible pesticide use,  http://pi.ace.orst.edu/erep/

The public may still report any adverse effect incident of a pesticide by calling NPIC at 1-800-858-7378

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Become a Guest Blogger!
New Forum and Blog on the organiclandcare.net Website.  We are excited about our new website's blog and forum capabilities.  We encourage NOFA AOLCPs to use these features to communicate with each other and
the public.  Post your landscaping or material questions onto the NOFA OLC forum or even become a guest blogger!  The Organic Land Care Program would be thrilled to have more AOLCPs participating to make our website a great resource for homeowners and land care professionals alike.  You can access both the forum and the blog on our website under the "Green Room" heading.
Contact Ashley Kremser at  akremser@ctnofa.org  if you are interested in becoming a guest blogger or if you have any questions.
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NOFA Standards Review

The following excerpt on Materials in Contact with Soil or Plants can be found on page 18 of the NOFA Standards for Organic Land Care.

Materials that come in contact with soil or plants, such as building materials, masonry, edging materials,
and landscape fabrics, should be free of harmful substances such as toxic metals, pesticides, or toxic
chemicals. Pressure-treated wood products which contain chromated copper arsenate (CCA) are of
special concern. These products are no longer sold, but if they have been used in the past, toxic residues
may still be present. Studies have shown that high amounts of CCA, which is highly toxic, can be
released from the wood in most soils of the northeast.

-Untreated rot-resistant wood, such as cedar, white oak, or black locust from sustainably
harvested sources
-Wood alternatives such as recycled plastic and plastic and wood fiber composites
-Masonry (stone, bricks, etc.)
-Non-galvanized or stainless steel
-If pressure treated wood is present, the soil should be tested for arsenic, chromium, and
copper, before planting food crops or soil disturbance

-If chemically treated wood already exists on a site and cannot be removed or client is unwilling
to remove it, then wood can be coated with paints or stains formulated for such use, such as
polyurethane, acrylic and spar varnish. Re-coat as required.
-Newspaper without glossy or color inks
-Plastic and nonwoven geotextile fabrics which do not contain polyvinyl chloride (PVC)
-Synthetic burlaps if removed completely at time of planting

-All types of chemically treated wood, burlap, stakes or twine
-Chemically treated paper and cellulose mulches
-Newspaper with glossy papers or color inks
-Plastic and nonwoven geotextile fabrics that contain polyvinyl chloride (PVC)
-Synthetic burlaps
-Creosote- or tar-treated wood (such as railroad ties)
-Petroleum-based wound dressings
-Galvanized steel


credit_oppCurrent AOLCP Credit Opportunities

The following classes and events have been approved for OLC credits.  In order to see a complete description of an event and the number of credits that will be awarded for attendance please go to the credit opportunities page of our website.  When you click on an event title, a complete description, including time, place, registration information, and number of credits will open.
5/7/10 - Guide through gardens, ecological methods, Wellsley, MA
5/8/10 - NOFA-NJ Organic Gardening Series, Hillsborough, NJ
5/8/10 - Introduction to Plant Propagation, Bronx, NY
5/8/10 - Gardening with Native Plants, Bronx, NY
5/8/10 - Designing Your Own Hummingbird Garden, Topsfield, MA
5/11/10 - Your Garden As Habitat, Boston, MA
5/11/10 - Organic Landscaping at Harvard
5/15/10 - New Planting Techniques for Trees and Shrubs, Whately, MA
5/15/10 - Foraging at Fisher Meadows, Avon, CT
5/16/10 - Harvard Forest, Petersham, MA
5/16/10 - Harvard Forest, Petersham, MA
5/17/10 - Introduction to Plant Propagation, Bronx, NY
5/20/10 - Rain Gardens in Successful Stormwater Management
5/21/10 - Tree Response to Injury, Infection, Change, New Haven, CT
5/22/10 - Vegetable Gardening 101, New Paltz, NY
5/22/10 - Natural Pest Control, Whately, MA.
5/27/10- Training I: Inland Wetland Plant Identification, Amherst, MA
6/3/10 - Training II: Identifying Inland Wetlands Soils, Amherst, MA
6/3/10 - Pests and Problems of Woody Ornamentals, Bridgewater, MA
6/5/10 - Fundamentals of Gardening II, Bronx, NY
6/6/10 - Rain Gardens: Beautiful Water-Saving Gardens, Boylston, MA  

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New Editor
As you may have read last month, Carol Hannon has retired, and I am now responsible for doing the e-news as well as the accrediting of the Organic Land Care Professionals.  I know I can not replace Carol, but hopefully you will be well served by my efforts.
I have been with the Land Care Program since last summer, I organized the NY 5 day course, and am currently organizing some Homeowner' workshops.
You can contact me by email, or by phone at 203-888-5146, I look forward to be hearing from you!
Clara Buitrago
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