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Cooperative Extension in York County

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Learn Yardscaping Basics at Cooperative Extension Workshop

University of Maine Cooperative Extension Master Gardener Volunteers will offer a hands-on yardscaping workshop, including how to incorporate native Maine plants in the yard, 2–4 p.m. Sunday, July 20, at Wells Reserve, 342 Laudholm Farm Road, Wells.

UMaine Extension Master Gardener Volunteers Allan Amioka and Ginger Laurits will cover basics of yardscaping — an ornamental gardening strategy that minimizes or eliminates the use of pesticides and fertilizers, thereby reducing harmful downstream effects. Learn about choosing the right place with the right plants that have low-pest profiles and are well adapted to the area. There also will be a tour of the Native Plant Garden at Wells Reserve, as well as a segment on identifying invasive species.

The $7 workshop fee ($5 for Laudholm Trust members) is payable at the event. Participants will meet at the All Seasons Garden behind the lab/science building, and should dress for the outdoors and be prepared for hands-on learning.

To preregister, call UMaine Extension in York County at 207.324.2814 or email For more information or to request a disability accommodation, call Frank Wertheim at 207.324.2814 or 800.287.1535 (in state).

The program is part of the Four Season Gardening series brought to the Wells Reserve at Laudholm by UMaine Extension’s York County Master Gardener Volunteers. The next workshop — Hoop Bending and Extending the Gardening Season in Maine — is scheduled for Wednesday, Aug. 13.

Hopkins Mentioned in Sanford News Article on Southern Maine Maple Syrup Contest

Kathryn Hopkins, a maple syrup expert and University of Maine Cooperative Extension educator and professor, was mentioned in a Sanford News article about Hilltop Boilers of Newfield being named “top boilers” for the state at the Southern Maine Maple Sugar Makers Association’s annual maple syrup contest. About 60 participants from York, Cumberland and Oxford counties attended. Hopkins, who also is host of the Maple Grading School, has made the program and contest possible for Maine’s syrup producers, according to the article.

Master Gardener Class – May 22

Hi All,

We had an amazing field trip to Berry Best Farm in Lebanon with a wildflower and forest tree ID workshop using Newcomb’s Wildflower and Forest Trees of Maine books.

This week’s class is on the Yardscaping program and Pesticide Safety with Gary Fish of the Maine Board of Pesticide Control. This is always a great session.

Homework for this week’s upcoming class

Review the Pesticide Safety chapter and then click on and review both the Got Pests? and the Master Gardener Educational Materials sections. You do not need to read everything, but just familiarize yourself with this excellent resource.

Also review the YardScaping web page — there are a number of great links and publications from it. 

Review this Fact Sheet on Low Input Healthy Lawns

Open Book Review # 3

Yesterday I also handed out Open Book Review # 3 which is due on the last class – June 5 .

Here it is as an electronic document for those who prefer that to the hard copy:

Open Book Review 3 (word)

Open Book Review 3 (pdf) 

See you Thursday!




Weekly Observer Advances 4-H Safety Saturday in Springvale

The Weekly Observer spoke with Trent Schriefer, a 4-H youth development professional with the University of Maine Cooperative Extension, about the 4-H Safety Saturday to be held in Springvale on May 31. The free program will cover ATV, bicycle, tractor and fire safety, as well as offer CPR instruction. Schriefer said organizers view the event as a way to kick off the summer and serve the 4-H and Sanford communities. “It’s important that kids, especially young kids, get to know community service providers at this type of event, which can then grow into a positive relationship,” Schriefer added.

Master Gardeners Offer Home Composting Workshop

University of Maine Cooperative Extension Master Gardeners are offering a hands-on workshop on basics of home composting and soil management 6–8 p.m. Thursday, June 5, 2014, at Wells Reserve at Laudholm, 342 Laudholm Farm Road, Wells 04090.

Best practices for home composting, including proper materials, pile management for optimum efficiency and bin options will be covered. Mulching, lasagna gardening, hugelkultur, cover cropping and soil testing will also be discussed and demonstrated. Glenn MacWilliams, a Master Gardener volunteer, and Frank Wertheim, an Extension professor, will lead the program. Meet at All Seasons Garden behind the lab/science building, dressed for the outdoors, and prepared for hands-on learning.

A $7 fee ($5 for members of Laudholm Trust) may be paid at the event. To register, contact UMaine Extension in York County, 207.324.2814 or For more information, or to request a disability accommodation, call Wertheim at 207.324.2814 or 800.287.1535 (in state).

Master Gardener Class – May 15

Plant Sale Success! Wow! 

Hello All… I want to express my gratitude and appreciation of all who worked so hard to pull off an amazing plant sale this past Saturday. It seemed like we were having an up hill struggle this year, with the digs starting late due to the long… cold… winter, then the rain predicted for Saturday. I was so impressed with the amount and variety of plants we had and the HUGE turnout for help Friday afternoon/evening and early Saturday morning in the rain!!! Then as if on cue, when 8:30 rolled around the rain just stopped. The Plant Sale Gods were smiling at us for sure!

We had an unofficial total of $7,500 raised on Saturday. We know from past years experience that the number will continue to go up as more people turn in funds from plant still be purchased and from raffle money still being turned is etc. Stay tuned for a final amount, but it was very impressive given the obstacles we dealt with.

Field Trip this coming Thursday, May 22: 

Wildflower and Forest Tree ID.

Class will meet at Berry Best Farm in Lebanon at 9:00 AM. Please dress for the outdoors and walking in the woods. We will be handing out Forest Trees of Maine and Newcomb’s Wildflower Guides to the class of 2014.

Continuing MGs who are joining us, please bring your copies of both guides.

Directions to Berry Best Farm

No Quiz This Week: Next take home open book will be handed out on Thursday

Image Description: :)

Master Gardener Class – May 8

Hi All,

Here is the All Seasons Garden Layout

MG Work Day – Thursday, May 15 – 9:00 AM 12:30 PM, 3 Sites to Choose From

Carrying on with the tradition started last year, we will have an MG Class Work Day that is open to all MGs and the hours count for both new and continuing MGs.

There will be three sites, and to ensure that we have enough volunteers at each site, please let Sue know which site you choose by emailing her at

​Remember to dress for the weather (hats, gloves, sunscreen, and yes the black flies are out so maybe some bug juice). Bring a bottle of water​ and a snack.

Frinklepod Farm

244 Log Cabin Rd, Arundel, ME 04046
Geri Fitzgerald is coordinating. This is a vegetable garden that is growing for Maine Harvest for Hunger. ​

Description: We have 14 beds at the farm where Noah practices a form of ‘no till’ or limited till farming.  The beds were established through tilling and building up the beds above the paths.  Unfortunately the paths have established many perennial weeds and turf which have invaded the beds.  Our tasks at this point are to clear out the invading weeds with pitch fork, spade and hand tools, tapping off as much soil as possible and composting the weed bunches. We also have compost with soil amendments that can be wheel barrowed out to the beds, once weeded and raked/ or “crumbled in” to the soil. Once the edges are cleared of weeds, we are putting cardboard in the paths and covering with wood chips.

Next we are ready to plant and cover kale and radishes, and also lettuces (if we can get Noah’s use of a seeder for the leaf lettuce. I might be able to get Noah to talk a little about his philosophy of farming which he describes as ‘beyond organic’- what organic practices he doesn’t support (and the little things like hand picking pests.)  I haven’t asked him, but usually he is at the farm from now on. Please bring a trowel, spade or pitch fork and garden gloves

Spiller Farm
85 Spiller Farm Ln, Wells, ME 04090
Sue will coordinate here – Bill and Anna have generously donated so many pounds of veggies to MHH, and even plant just for us.
Description: Bill has 2000 strawberry plants to get in the ground.  We did this for him
last year, just slightly changed.   Bill will have bare root plants, a template to space them out and a lovely tool that he designed, for planting.    ​

Laudholm Farm ​– All Seasons ​Garden Preparation
342 Laudholm Farm Rd, Wells, ME 04090
​Allan Amioka will coordinate

Description: Some weeding, broadforking, amending, mounding, drip line installing. Depending on how many we have, leveling the hoop area and maybe, putting plastic on the two small hoops houses. Again, bring gloves, water bottles, snacks, favorite tools.

Handouts from May 8 Class

Intensive Production Raised Beds PowerPoint

Raised Bed Plans (word)

Raised Bed Plans (pdf)

Square Foot Garden Plans (word)

Square Foot Garden Plans (pdf)

 No Quiz this week – break after open book review :)

Master Gardener Class – May 1

Hi All,

Two Classes this week:

Tuesday, May 6. 3:00 – 6:30 PM in Springvale (usual spot) – topic: Food Insecurity/Hunger in the US and Maine – all are welcome – this will be a joint class with the Cumberland County MG trainees

Thursday, May 8, 9:00 AM  - 12:30 PM, Mather Auditorium, at Laudholm Farm – topic: Intensive Production Raised Beds, Drip Irrigation and Rain Barrels - all welcome


View Video on Extending the Gardening Season Using Raised Beds

Review Fact Sheets

Why Consider Drip Irrigation (Word)

Why Consider Drip Irrigation (PDF)

Rain Harvesting (Word)

Rain Harvesting (PDF)

Food Security Chapter:

Getting What We Pay For: An Overview of Federal Agricultural Policy

Hunger in Maine


Quiz 6 – Landscape Design (word)

Quiz 6 – Landscape Design (pdf)


Master Gardener Class – April 24

Hi All,

What an exciting week for the class of 2014 with Resilient Landscapes and Climate Change on Tuesday and Pest Management on Thursday!

This week’s class with Amy Witt we will meet at the Mather Auditorium at Wells Reserve at Laudholm Farm on Thursday, May 1 at 9:00 AM. We will be working both inside the auditorium and out on the grounds learning landscape design techniques.

We will also have a chance to do some hands-on pruning so please dress for the outdoors and bring pruning tools including a hand held pruner, loppers and a pruning saw if you have them.

Directions to Wells Reserve


Read: From the Designing and Maintenance Chapter of your manual please read:
Designing Your Landscape for Maine  
UMaryland Landscape Design Chapter 2

Review: From your chapter on Plants for the Maine Landscape please review the Invasive Plant fact sheet series.

Take Home Review – this review is due in two weeks on May 8th which is another field trip to Laudholm so please bring your completed review that day.

Open Book Review 2 (word)

Open Book Review 2 (pdf)

Master Gardener Class – April 17

Hi All,

Great class with Mark Hutton on Veggies – if only we had another 10 hours! On potatoes Mark meant that they take a lot of space in the home garden and are also pest intensive, so why not buy them from local farmers. If you want to grow potatoes in the garden here is our Potato Fact Sheet

Here is the link to the UNH Sweet Potato Fact Sheet

Reminder: This week we have two classes scheduled

Tuesday April 22: Climate Change and Resilient Landscapes - this class will be held jointly with Cumberland County Master Gardeners at their site at the Tidewater Regional Learning Center, 75 Clearwater Drive, Suite 104, Falmouth, Maine 04105, Phone: 207.781.6099 or 1.800.287.1471

Note: This class is open only to the class of 2014. I am sorry as I know there are MGs who would like to sit in on this class, but the Cumberland County site is limited in space and with the two classes coming together there just isn’t room.

Directions to Tidewater

Thursday’s Class April 24 - Pest Management – Garden Insects and Disease

No Quiz this week with two classes to prepare for this week I will have your next take home review ready for you with a print copy next Thursday and then I will post an electronic version to next week’s blog.


Please review the chapters on Climate Change and Pest Management. The Pest Management page is password protected and the password is Ladybug

Image Description: :)


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University of Maine Cooperative Extension

Contact Information

Cooperative Extension in York County
21 Bradeen Street, Suite 302
Springvale, Maine 04083
Phone: 207.324.2814 or 1.800.287.1535 (in Maine)E-mail:
The University of Maine
Orono, Maine 04469
A Member of the University of Maine System