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Help Desk hours for Fall and Winter
Master Gardeners will be available to assist you Monday through Friday, from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm. Please call, e-mail or stop by with questions. We will reply to phone and e-mail messages as soon as possible on our next duty shift.
2014 Master Gardener class
Applications for the next class, which begins January 6, will be going out at the beginning of November. If you would like more information about the class, or want to be on the mailing list for an application, please contact Neil Bell, Marion Co. Horticulturist, email@example.com.
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We get questions...
OSU provides an excellent calendar of tasks for various seasons, helping gardeners plan activities throughout the year. There is also an archive of helpful articles on a wide variety of gardening topics in the OSU Gardening Encyclopedia. Dip into these useful resources for tips and inspiration.
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What is this plant?
This question is usually accompanied by a leaf, a twig, sometimes even a whole plant. Master Gardeners on the Help Desk can usually make an identification, at least after a bit of research. This applies whether the unidentified is a weed or a wanted plant.
For best results, please bring in a good-sized section of the plant, preferably with either blossom or fruit/seeds attached. If possible, a section of root, or a bulb/tuber can also be helpful. Many plants are very similar in appearance, so having several parts to work with definitely improves the result.
Unfortunately, we normally cannot identify a particular cultivar; for example, given the above parts, we can't tell you if a blueberry is Earliblue or Bluecrop.
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If you have a question, call us at 503-373-3770 or drop us an e-mail, firstname.lastname@example.org. We love finding answers!
How can Master Gardeners help you?
Marion County Master Gardeners (MGs) are here to serve our neighbors in a variety of ways:
A large group of dedicated MGs maintain the Marion Garden, located behind the county health services building at 3180 Center St. in Salem. Originally a rubbish dumping ground for the county, it has been transformed in the last 15+ years to an outstanding demonstration garden. Stop by and stroll around for inspiration, information, or just enjoyment. Monday mornings are the regular time for MG work parties, so there’s usually someone on hand then to answer your questions. Garden tours are also available by appointment.
We also staff the MG Help Desk at the OSU Extension Office, located in the county health services building, also at 3180 Center St. Clients call 503.373.3770, send an e-mail to us at email@example.com, or come in with questions regarding plant culture; weed, insect and plant disease identification; and a wide variety of other home gardening issues. Experience, training, and an excellent library, as well as knowledge of online resources, help us provide the answers to most questions. For those outside our range of information, we supply referrals to other agencies and organizations, including our Marion Co. horticulturist, Neil Bell. From October through March, the Help Desk is staffed Monday through Friday from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm. April through September, office hours are 9:00 am to 5:00 pm Monday through Thursday, and 9 to 1 on Friday. Messages left on our voicemail outside those hours will be answered on the next business day.
During much of the year, MGs also sponsor and staff booths at various fairs, garden shows and farmers’ markets. These serve as a mobile form of the Help Desk, and are an opportunity to find answers to your gardening questions and pick up useful information.
MGs also offer workshops to help with some of those gardening tasks that are best learned from hands-on presentations. Pruning in early spring and beneficial insects in April are recurring topics. Check our website for specific information as events draw near.
Many MGs also simply love to talk about gardening. If you have a community group that would like a speaker, please call the Help Desk, 503.373.3770, and leave your name and number for our Speakers’ Bureau coordinator. You also can sample MG information every Thursday morning on Radio KBZY (1490 am) from 8:40 to 9:00 am.
For our younger neighbors, MGs also develop and present gardening programs at area elementary schools in late spring, and host an activity booth at AgFest.
Home gardens come in all shapes, sizes and types of plantings. Please call or stop by to see how Marion County Master Gardeners can help you make yours the garden of your dreams.
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Oregon State University Extension Service offers educational programs, activities, and materials without discrimination based on age, color, disability, gender identity or expression, marital status, national origin, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, or veteran’s status. Oregon State University Extension Service is an Equal Opportunity Employer.
El Servicio de Extensión (Extension Service) de Oregon State University ofrece programas educativos, actividades, y materiales sin discriminación basada sobre edad, color, incapacidades, identidad o expresión de identidad sexual, estado matrimonial, origen nacional, raza, religión, sexo, orientación sexual, o estado de veterano. El Servicio de Extensión de Oregon State University es una institución que ofrece igualdad de oportunidades.