County Offices, Courts and Landfill will be closed on Monday, July 4 for the Independence Day Holiday. Critical services at Larimer County are not disrupted by closures.
Larimer County Extension Advisory Committee
September 1, 2010
The meeting was held in the Extension Office meeting room in Fort Collins. Those present were Suzanne Jarboe-Simpson, Dixie Dick, Ralph Bender, Pam Harrold, Jesse Mae Hendrickson, Seth Anthony , Kristina Meyers, Mel Hilgenberg, Sarah Erickson, Ronda Koski, Extension Director Laurel Kubin, Extension Agents Alison O'Connor, Karen Crumbaker, and Administrative Assistant Fred McClanahan, Jr.
Excused: Trena Anastasia, Brenna Tindall
The meeting was called to order at 8:05 a.m. Introductions were made. Minutes of the previous meeting were approved.
Karen Crumbaker, Ag & Natural Resources Extension Agent
Native Plant Masters Program
This is the third year for the NPM program in Larimer County with great responses. Three hands-on training were held at Soap Stone, Young's Gulch and Lory State Park. One-third of students take the training to become program volunteers and teach classes to the public. Twenty-two students took all 3 courses.
A radon education program was held for realtors that will count as continuing education for them. They are taught how to deal with radon in real estate transactions. The focus is on mountain communities where radon is found in higher levels.
Colorado Big & Small Conference
The 7th Colorado Ag Big & Small conference will be held for two days in February 2011. In 2010, 100 people from Larimer, Adams, Boulder & Weld counties attended the conference with many indicating they would like to return next year. Thirty speakers were involved with the presentations.
Growing Your Future
Workshop was held in the spring of 2010 with 50 attendees.
NRCS, Extension and Pawnee Seed conducted a grass tour in August 2010. Fifty to sixty attended the tour of properties and learned about re-establishing acreages to grass and/or native plants.
Small Acreage Extreme Makeover
Extension from Larimer, Boulder and Adams County along with NRCS had this workshop to educate people on how to care for their property.
Karen worked on the guidelines committee for a Resource Stewardship Guide to help equine boarding and training facilities with new regulations. The county is requiring owners to take a stewardship program for education in the best ways to manage their property.
Alison O'Connor, Horticulture Extension Agent
Master Gardeners in Colorado
Statewide, there are 1,752 volunteers recording 67,592 hours of volunteer service since January 2009
Larimer County Master Gardeners
Currently 119 volunteers in our program
In the Front Range region, in 2009, Larimer County:
◦ Ranked 4th in total Master Gardener volunteers in Colorado
◦ 1st in total volunteer hours in Colorado
◦ 1st in average hours per volunteer in Colorado
Master Gardener Office Duty
Through August 27, 2010:
◦ 652 phone calls and walk-in clients (since April 2010)
◦ 180 emails for those working home phone duty
Most popular questions: Tomatoes, lawns, tree dieback in spring!
Tree Team (site visits to examine trees)
Reorganized to assign locations by ZIP Code
◦ Volunteers can sign up “closer to home”
◦ Reduces travel and mileage
◦ Can keep abreast of local problems
To date: 73 Tree Team calls
Most frequent problems: Winterkill, insects, drought stress
How Master Gardeners become a tree team member:
Have at least 2 years of service as a MG volunteer
Studies under a member as an Apprentice for one or two seasons
Attends the Advanced Diagnostic Training
◦ Held regionally with many counties participating
◦ Once per month during the summer
◦ Morning lecture followed by hands-on diagnostics
◦ Funded through a grant obtained by Dr. Ned Tisserat and Tamla Blunt
New Master Gardener Continuing Education
Tomatoes—start to finish
Introduction to Diagnostics
Importance of Soil Testing
Vegetable Container Gardening
Larimer County Farmers' Market
2010 marks the 35th Annual Larimer County Farmers’ Market
Was awarded the Rotary Club of Fort Collins “Service to Agriculture” award
Starting in early spring, a group of Master Gardeners formed a marketing steering committee
Planned Opening Day events
Started a blog and Twitter account -- www.larimercountyfarmersmarket.blogspot.com
Weekly demonstration booths
Networked for give-aways
Tried new forms of advertising
MG Volunteers per day: 8 (first shifts are 5:30am)
Total MGs that volunteer: 53
Customers: 2,000 in July, 3,500 August
Paid staff: 2 J – Alison & Jean Reeder, MG and FM Assistant
Gross sales are up 13% from 2009
Total sales $377,000 (2009)
August 28, 2010 was the largest grossing day ever: $35,600 in gross sales
Increased vendors (64 in 2009)—73 in 2010
Market Bucks are up 20%
The best news: food stamp use up 75%!
Other Extension Horticulture Activities
CSU Field Day—a way for industry and MGs to learn about the latest research at CSU
◦ 215 total participants; 81 MGs
◦ Have visited 15 lawns; helped 35 others on the phone
◦ Jean Reeder and Harry Love
Graff’s Turf Farm Field Day
MG Coordinator Conference, Davis, CA, October 5-8, 2010
Food Gardening “Boot Camp”, January 2011
Continue teaching with Carol O'Meara
MG Training—Larimer, Boulder, Adams and Weld Counties at The Ranch
September 27: Boards & Commissions reception
October 6: Joint Cluster Advisory Committees – 3:30pm, The Ranch
November 10 (change of date) : Advisory Committee Meeting with County Commissioners and Dr. Frank
Budget Planning Update:
Three service proposals: Food safety & health, 4-H, and Horticulture, Ag & Natural Resources.
Budget submitted for 6% reduction and possible 25% reduction. Revenues are important to make up budget shortages.
Cluster Needs Assessment Survey
A formal research needs based survey will be sent out to 800 citizens in each of the following counties: Boulder, Adams, Weld and Larimer.
4-H Membership Fee
4-H Fees need to be increased because the fee paid to CSU has increased from $5 / member / year to $15. Enrollment scholarships and payment plans will still be available, but committee was asked for input on fee increase.
Should service organizations be asked to help with fees?
Do clubs have funds in their accounts to help members with fees?
Too high of an increase would possibly prevent some families from joining 4-H.
Wendy Woerner, Extension 4-H Agent, resigned in early July to pursue a career in the meat industry.
The position will remain vacant until funds at CSU become available.
Attendance was up, revenue was up – overall it was a successful Fair!
The meeting was adjourned at 10:00 a.m.
Next meeting will be November 10, 2010, 8:00 a.m. at the Larimer County Extension Office.
Fred McClanahan, Jr.