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Fall Issue 2014

The VNLA Quarterly Newsletter
Volume 40, Issue 3
Green Works
Celebrates 50 Years!
Thank You to our Members!
We would not be here without YOU!
Inside this Issue
presidents letter
Board of Directors 3
2015 Vermont
Flower Show -
Where We Are
Green Works
Summer Meeting
Green Works Takes
the Social Media
Plunge & GW
Launches List Serve
Green Works New
Award for 2015
White Magic 8
Green Works
Summer Twilights
News from the U 12
VCH Committee
Update - a new
Study Manual
Heres the Pitch 14
Supplier Profile -
Pridess Corner
Member Andrea
Morgante Receives
2014 Art Gib Award
VT Agency of Ag
NE Grows 19
VT Flower Show
Plant Lists
Green Works
Nomination Ballot
Calendar of Events 23
I am currently reading a fascinating and quite
disturbing book titled The Worst Hard Time
by Timothy Egan. In this book the author tells
the epic story of what was arguably the worst
man-made environmental disaster of the
twentieth century, the Dust Bowl of the 1930s.
In the decades leading up to the depression
years of the early thirties, millions of acres of
native prairie grasses which had taken
thousands of years to evolve were plowed
under to make way for wheat production in
the Great Plains of the southwest spanning
vast areas of this semi-arid region from parts
of Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico, to
Oklahoma, and Texas. The wheat boom
resulted from promotion and incentives by the
federal government to encourage thousands to
relocate to the region and seek their fortune in
this land of great opportunity. In the two
decades leading up to the 30s, wet years
resulted in record wheat harvests that further
fueled the unregulated plowing under of
millions of additional acres of native
grasslands despite dire warnings from a few
who understood the implications of such
indiscriminate farming practices. By the onset
of the depression the vast majority of the
region had been stripped of its native
vegetation setting up a recipe for disaster.
What followed were several years of severe
drought coupled with a bottoming out of the
wheat market that prompted thousands to
abandon their farms leaving the fallow land to
the mercy of the unrelenting winds that
plagued the region. During the decade that
became known as the dirty thirties, frequent
massive dust storms stripped away millions of
tons of the native topsoil carrying it across the
continent as far east as New York City and
Washington DC on several occasions. The
region was decimated and eventually lead to
formation of the Soil Conservation Service
that would change farming practices in the
decades to follow.
It would be nice to say that the lessons
learned from this ecological disaster would
prevent the future indiscriminate looting of
our natural environment in the name of
profits, but one doesnt need to look hard to
see potential ecological disasters in the
making across the globe. A prime example lies
just north of our border in Alberta, Canada
where thousands of acres of native boreal
forests are being clear cut and wetlands are
being drained to allow for the mining of tar
sands to extract the oil that is contained
within. In Alberta, an area larger than the
state of Florida, has been set aside for lease by
companies to carry out this destructive
practice over the next decade.
When I read about the Dust Bowl or see what
we are doing to our natural world around the
planet, I cant help but feel helpless in my
ability to do something about it. So, my
thoughts often turn to what I am doing on a
daily basis in my own little world that will
serve to preserve the natural world for future
generations. We all know that familiar phrase,
Think globally, act locally. Having worked a
small piece of land for the past 25 years I have
always been conscientious of the ecological
impact of my practices on the land and have
looked for ways to mitigate the footprint that I
will leave behind. Am I doing everything that
I can to be a responsible steward of the land
and our planet? It is something that I believe
we all should be doing as members of an
association that labels itself Green Works. I
know that many of you are keenly aware of
the impact of your business practices on our
natural environment and are continually
looking for ways to minimize your footprint by
implementing changings to way you do things
on a daily basis. It is something that we
should all be doing if we hope to leave behind
a livable planet for future generations. Such
efforts will not only help to ensure a healthy
planet but will also likely serve to improve our
bottom lines and raise our image with the
customers and clients that we serve. I hope
that this will provide some food for thought as
you take some time in the coming months to
review your business practices.
It was great to see so many of you at our
summer meeting in August and as always I
encourage your comments and suggestions for
future programming ideas. Best wishes for a
productive fall season.
VJ Comai, Green Works/VNLA/President
VJ Comai
South Forty Nursery
184 Tamarack Rd * Charlotte, VT 05445
802.425.6222 *
Ed Burke
Rocky Dale Gardens
806 Rocky Dale Road * Bristol, VT 05443
802-453-2782 *
Nate Carr
Church Hill Landscapes, Inc.
287 Church Hill Road * Charlotte, VT 05445
David Burton
Ginkgo Design, LLC
22 Pearl Street
Essex Junction, VT 05452
Carrie Chalmers
Quoyburray Farm
239 Lawrence Hill Road * Weston, VT 05161
Hannah Decker
Fairfax Perennial Farm, Inc.
7 Blackberry Hill Road * Fairfax, VT 05454
Shannon Lee
Sisters of Nature
135 Phyllis Lane
Waterville, VT 05492
Ron Paquette
Paquette Full of Posies Nursery
10236 Williston Road * Williston, VT 05495
Brian Vaughan
Vaughan Landscaping
40 Mt. Pritchard Lane
St. George, VT 05495

Kristina MacKulin
Green Works-VNLA
P.O. Box 92 * N. Ferrisburgh, VT 05473
Toll Free: 888.518.6484; 802.425.5117
Fax 802.425.5122
Nate Carr
Church Hill Landscapes, Inc.
Brian Vaughan
Vaughan Landscaping
Ed Burke
Rocky Dale Gardens
Ed Burke
Rocky Dale Gardens
VJ Comai
South Forty Nursery
Brian Vaughan
Vaughan Landscaping
VJ Comai
South Forty Nursery
VJ Comai
South Forty Nursery
Nate Carr
Church Hill Landscapes, Inc.
board of directors

For information on
in The Dirt
Kristina at the
Green Works Ofce
Please renew your
Membership Today
and dont Delay!
Renewal applications have been
mailed or you can renew on-line at
We are excited to once again be producing the Vermont
Flower Show to be held February 27, 28 and March 1,
2015!!!! Plans are well underway as I write this to ensure
a unique, inspiring, and successful show. Our Vermont
Flower Show, in one form or another, has been on-going
since the inception of the Association 50 years ago. It was
born out of a collaborative effort and commitment to
promote our professional members, plants and services.
The greater commitment was to
also provide an event that
would offer educational and
inspirational opportunities to
the public.
The theme for 2015 is Spring
Reflections enabling us to
think back over our past 50
years as an organization, as
well as look ahead to what the
new landscape, new ideas and
new concepts will bring us in
the next 50 years.
There are so many aspects of
the show that culminate into
the actual show days. Please
think about ways you can
contribute to the success of the
show. Whether it is donating a
few plants, joining a committee,
or volunteering to work during
the show, there are many ways to get involved! I
encourage each and every member to think of a way to
contribute. Green Works is proud of the past 50 years!
The Vermont Flower Show contributes to our financial
success as an Association and will enable us to grow over
these next 50 years.
The Grand Central Display
The Central Display Committee has been meeting since
early winter to design and plan the Grand Central Display.
New committee members are always welcome. Lets just
say water abounds! The committee is busy securing
plants, hardscaping and other materials to build the
central display. Please consider donating a few plants and
visit pages 20-21 to view the shrub, tree, and perennial
Become an Exhibitor at the Show
Green Works members are offered a discount on booth
space and the early deadline to sign up for even more of a
discount is October 30, 2014. Our last show we had over
8,000 visitors over three days! The Flower Show is a
perfect way to showcase who you are, what you do, as well
as talk to a lot of people. Consider partnering with
someone and share a booth! Visit the Green Works
website for complete details on how to become an exhibitor.
Become an Sponsor at the Show
The Green Works board of directors and flower show
committees are making a concerted effort to raise more
cash sponsorship for our next show. Our show is a great
marketing venue and is a unique way for businesses to
ally themselves with our green industry. We have many
levels of sponsorship to offer. If you or someone you know
might be interested in becoming a sponsor please contact
Kristina in the office or visit our website for complete
details. So far we have one presenting sponsor Price
Chopper! Other cash sponsors that have signed on so far
are: Pillsbury Senior
Communities and Phoenix
The Flower Show
There are many
components that make up
the Vermont Flower Show.
Dr. Leonard Perry has been
working on the educational
lineup of the show and we
will again be offering over
40 seminars and workshops
to the public. Our keynote
speaker is Jane Knight, a
landscape architect for the
Eden Project in Cornwall,
England. Eden is an
extraordinary global garden
featuring the largest
rainforest in captivity as
well as a Mediterranean landscape both growing within
huge, geodesic domes. The Eden Project's sole mission is to
"inspire people to care about the natural world." Jane will
be speaking on Reflections on How Plants Help People.
We have many other wonderful speakers lined up thus far,
including Kerry Mendez, Sinclair Adam, Charlie Nardozzi,
Mary Jo Childs, Judith Irven, Charlotte Albers and Sarah
Salatino. If you might be interested in presenting at the
Flower Show please contact Kristina in the office.
Cooking demonstrations in the past shows have been
highly successful and will be offered again. The Family
Room activities and entertainment planning are well
The Federated Garden Clubs of Vermont will be returning
to hold another National Garden Standard Flower Show
and the Vermont Railway Society will offer their train
We will be holding another statewide essay contest,
offering a three day silent auction during the show, and
selling the flowering bulbs at the conclusion of the show.
As the time draws nearer to actually building the central
display we will be calling on all members to volunteer a
few hours to help. Set-up will begin on Tuesday, February
23 through February 26. We will also be asking for help
staffing the show during the hours the show is open to the
2015 Vermont Flower Show - Where We Are
by Kristina MacKulin
Scene from the 2013 VT Flower Show
continued on page 7
A perfect summer day, a spectacular location, and an
inspirational keynote speaker came together on August
to make for a memorable summer meeting at von
Trapp Greenhouses in Waitsfield. More than 140 Green
Works members and
exhibitors came together
to share the day. Our
keynote speaker was
Darrel Morrison, FASLA.
Darrel treated attendees
to two inspiring
presentations before
lunch. In his first session,
he spoke about landscape
design as ecological art
sharing the inspiration for
his designs and
highlighting a number of projects
from his vast portfolio including
his work on the Old Stone Mill
landscape at the New York
Botanical Garden, the native
woodland garden at New York
University, and his work at The
Storm King Art Center in
Mountainville, NY.
In his second presentation Darrel
delighted the audience as he
shared his method for
initiating his design
process by sketching two
preliminary designs set
to selections of classical
music. Volunteers from
the audience got the ball
rolling. A video of Darrel
in action is on the Green
Works Facebook page
and is truly inspiring and
entertaining to watch.
Following Darrels
presentation, members
took some time to visit
exhibitors, network, and
catch up with old friends
before sitting down to a
delicious catered lunch.
After lunch a special
business meeting was
held to review and
discuss membership dues
as was voted on at our annual meeting last February.
Following a lively half hour debate, a motion was made
and seconded to increase membership dues for 2015 by 5%.
The motion passed unanimously.
The business meeting was followed up by our annual
auction led by our perennial auctioneer David Loysen.
Thanks to the generous donation of auction items from
members and exhibitors and some lively bidding from
participants, the auction
raised more than $1400
for our scholarship and
research fund.
The remainder of the
afternoon was filled by
tours of the retail area of
the von Trapp
Greenhouses and the
breathtaking public and
private gardens
surrounding the business
and residence and a presentation
by Tim Schmalz of the VT Agency
of Agriculture.
Owners Sally and Tobi von Trapp
led separate groups and shared
the story of how they
transformed the site into the
thriving business that it is today
over the past thirty years. Every
plant sold is either started from
seed or propagated in the
greenhouses. Their
passion for their work
and their commitment to
the highest standards for
quality were clearly
visible at every turn.
Tobi explained and
demonstrated his
innovative solution for
efficient mixing of large
quantities of consistent
potting soil for
greenhouse plants as
onlookers marveled at
his ingenuity. Sally
treated members to a
tour of her private
extensive gardens
surrounding their house
that are not open to
general public. You
couldnt help but to leave
there inspired by their
enthusiasm and
attention to detail. If you have never had the opportunity
to visit the von Trapps business it is well worth the trip to
the scenic Mad River valley. Our thanks go out to all who
participated in this terrific meeting and to Sally and Tobi
for so graciously sharing their paradise with the VNLA.
Green Works Summer Meeting Recap
Above: Kristen Seibert draws a site plan; Darrell Morrison takes over
with the design process.
Below: Sally von Trapp give a tour of her private gardens.
We have a new opportunity to offer all our members, which
will help build member-to-member networking capacity.
We are launching a new service to help VNLA members
continue networking and remain connected beyond our
biannual gatherings. It is an email list server that
Leonard Perry has generously offered to host through
A list serve is simply an electronic mailing list, where one
user sends an email message to the list serve address, and
it is then forwarded to all members subscribed to the list.
Anyone who would like to respond to the question can do so
and the response will be seen by all as well. It is a great
way to share information and ask questions of your fellow
colleagues. The board is also excited as we can easily
gather input and feedback as we plan programming and
upcoming events in the future. The address for the list
serve is
Please note the list serve is not replacing communications
to or from the VNLA office. If you have a question for our
Executive Director please contact her directly at Kristina will continue
to email information related to events and membership
through her office email contact list.
Below are a few guidelines to keep the list serve efficient
and running smoothly:

Keep all communications relevant to VNLA

members. Nothing personal please!

Use the subject heading to describe your question.

It makes searching through old emails easier when
you want to look back at an email thread.

While a list serve can be like an online

conversation, no one likes to have their inbox
flooded with emails. In an effort to limit the
barrage of emails, please reply directly to the
person who initiated the conversation. After a few
days the original person can then cut and paste all
the responses into one email and send that out
again to the list serve address so that everyone can
see all the responses to the original question in one
location. This has worked well on other email list
serves in Vermont and cuts down on the chatter.

If you decide to opt out of the list serve there is a

link at the bottom to unsubscribe or please contact
Kristina in the office.

This list is for VNLA members only and is private.

Any additions or changes to email addresses should
be sent to Kristina at
We are hopeful this will be a useful tool for members.
Maybe some future questions will be.Looking for a ride
to New England Grows? Anyone out there headed to a
certain meeting or event?.. Im investigating design
software. How do folks like Vectorworks?.. Anyone have
Acer griseum growing successfully at higher elevations?
Some examples!
Thanks and we look forward to connecting our members on
this new list serve.
Green Works Launches New List Serve!
Green Works Takes the Social Media Plunge!
We are pleased to announce that we are taking social media
by storm! To help promote and generate interest for Green
Works as well as our biennial Vermont Flower Show, we
are fully connected!
We would love for you to follow and join in on the
conversation on whichever platform you use. As Green
Works members, we would also like you to use these
platforms to promote your businesses. Connect with us,
post to our pages, or let us know something special you
would like to share and we'll share it. It's another way for
us to help your business thrive!
Join the conversation!
You can find us here...
@greenworksvt & @vermontflowershow
Twitter: @greenworksvt & @vtflowershow
Instagram: @greenworksvt & @vtflowershow
Pinterest: @greenworksvt & @vtflowershow
Green Works is pleased to announce a
new award which will be given annually,
beginning at our winter meeting in
January, 2015. This annual award is
named the Allen B. Crane Horticultural
Employee Acknowledgement Award.
The Award comes with a cash award
and is being sponsored by Claussens
Florist & Greenhouses in honor of their
employee, Allen B. Crane. Allen was
employed at Claussens for more than
forty years and sadly lost his battle
with cancer in August, 2013.
Allen B. Crane grew up on the Hislop
Farm in Jeffersonville, VT. He worked
his way through the University of
Vermont by working tirelessly on The
Packard Farm in Essex until his graduation with a degree
in Plant and Soil Science. In 1973 Allen joined Claussens
Greenhouses in Colchester and continued to work there for
over forty years until his passing in 2013. His commitment
to Bill Claussen and his fellow co-workers was significant
in the successes of Claussens four decades of business and
has left his mark forever. Allen was always willing to
share his keen sense of knowledge and experience in the
plant industry with anyone that came along, especially
new employees of the greenhouse. His ability to
troubleshoot any and all of the mechanical and inner
workings of the greenhouse was second to none. He could
figure out any problem, either plant health or facility
related with a practical approach that many desire to have
One of Allens finest attributes was his willingness to help
others in need, always without need for acknowledgement
or recognition. Allen was the unsung hero of many projects
that Claussens staff had agreed to participate in always
without any acknowledgment of his involvement. Allens
willingness to cover everyone elses needs always came
before his own, thus leading to the
decision to create this award in his
Claussens is very proud to sponsor and
support this award in recognition of
Allen B. Cranes commitment to the
horticulture industry. A life long
gardener, Allen shared his passion for
plants, gardening, and the outdoors with
everyone he came in contact with.
The description of the award is as
This award will be presented annually
and is being sponsored by Claussens
Florist & Greenhouse in honor of Allen B.
Crane, head grower there for over 42
years. Allen was a great friend, wonderful colleague
and an incredible grower. Allen passed away in 2013
after a yearlong battle with cancer. This award is
being established in Allens honor to recognize the
employees that make a difference in the horticultural
industry. A cash prize will be awarded to the
recipient in the amount of $275. Nominees must meet
the following criteria: they should be an employee of a
member business with a minimum of 5 years
employment with that business; nominees must be
employed in the horticultural industry, which could
also include the field of education; and nominees
should be exemplary leaders and display an ability to
grow and excel in the workplace and beyond.
Nominations must include a supporting paragraph
that reflects the above criteria.
Nomination ballots were mailed with membership renewal
applications. There is also a ballot printed on page 22 of
this newsletter or you can download a ballot on our
website. Please note that nominations for all Green
Works awards are due by November 1, 2014.
Green Works Introduces New Award for 2015 -
The Allen B. Crane Horticultural Employee Acknowledgement Award
public and for many hands to help with clean up on
Monday, March 2.
I have been involved with the Flower Show, in varying
aspects over the last 17 years. I have served, at the
pleasure of the membership, as Chairperson, for six
shows. What keeps me drawn to this event is the truly
amazing collaboration and work ethic that so many
contribute to this event. Many return year after year and
we continue to welcome new people each show. These
members and volunteers are the heart and soul of the
Flower Show as well as the Association. Help us create
another successful year and keep our Association going
strong by getting involved as little or as much as you
continued from page 4
Allen B. Crane
Many people shun winter
as the forgotten season.
They look out of their
windows and all they see
is a vast expanse of snow
or, depending on the
weather patterns and
location, a brown lawn
and some empty
But, with a little
planning and
forethought, all gardens
our own or those of our
clients can be as
special in winter as they
are in summer. All it
takes is a little
imagination plus a belief
in the art of the possible.
All gardening is
landscape painting
For me, this famous
quotation, from the 18th
century English poet
Alexander Pope, says it
all. Creating a
memorable garden is all
about creating beautiful pictures to enjoy in every season.
It goes without saying that our winter garden pictures will
be different from our summer garden pictures, and we need
to adjust our expectations accordingly.
Looking at the garden in winter is like looking at a familiar
space through a different lens. Summer is all about color and
pretty things, where we are quickly drawn into the details of
beautiful flowers and patterned leaves.
The quiet of winter is a distant relative of summers
busyness, but every bit as beautiful in its own way. Winter is
stark and elegant with abstract shapes and textures, like a
black-and white photograph. And our winter palette is
confined to browns and blacks with occasional highlights of
red, green and yellow, but a little fresh snow brings the
pictures to life.
The low sun, streaking through the leafless trees, paints
giant black-and-white stripes on the ground that could
camouflage a zebra. In wintertime both the trees and their
shadows are an essential part of our garden pictures.
Also, as outside temperatures drop, distant views become
crystal sharp in the dry air. Sometimes it feels like we can
see forever, and a remote mountain feels almost touchable,
as it too becomes part of the garden scene.
Winter exposes the bones of the garden
Designers love to talk about the bones or the skeleton of the
garden, meaning its underlying composition and layout. And
in wintertime, without the distractions of summer, this
skeleton is all the more conspicuous.
So, to create a garden that is inherently
interesting in winter, look first at the
underlying spatial design. How are the different
garden spaces laid out and what is the
relationship between them? Are there ways to
accentuate that design to make it pop out
when seen from the house?
As a case in point, it was twenty years ago
when I began to consider my own back garden.
An enormous rockmost likely a relic of the
immense glacier that receded from New
England some 20,000 years agostraddled the
southwest corner next to the house, dominating
the entire space. There was also an old cherry
treein need of careful pruning that grew
between the house and the rock. And that was
about it!
To create the underlying design I mentally
defined a diagonal axis at 45 to the houseand
then positioned three major garden elements
a gazebo, an arbor and a circular patio edged
with low-growing Kerria japonica Pictaalong
this axis.
Of course, we know that, when the weather
outside is frigid, we will surely spend most of
our time inside. So to create a garden with
winter in mind, we must focus on what will be
seen from indoors, when the windows of the
house becomes the frames of our garden
Also, since our
gardens will be
snow-covered for
at least part of
the winter, we
need to ensure
the underlying
design remains
visible when the
snow is two feet
deep, and the
outlines of the
flowerbeds and
paths are
The trick is
emphasize the
gardens spatial
layout with
strong show in
the snow garden
elements, like my
arbor and gazebo.
Today, as I sit in
my study, I look
directly between
the stems of the
old cherry tree
White Magic
by Judith Irven
continued on page 10
Winter shows the bones of the garden in this view
from Judith study window.
A metal sculpture by Bill Heise, etched in
snow, is framed by rose arbor.
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1177_Dirt_April2014.indd 1 3/26/14 4:49 PM
right down the diagonal axis to the patio with a group of
garden chairs, the arbor and the gazebothe perfect winter
Other show-in-the-snow garden elements to emphasize the
gardens bones include medium-height stone walls,
intermediate-sized evergreens, beautifully pruned small
trees and clusters of shrubs.
Plants for the winter
Winter is by no means
devoid of color, but
typically it comes in
smaller packages. Adding
color to our winter
gardens is a bit like
putting ornaments on the
Christmas treewe need
eye-catching decorations
that will stand out
against a quiet
We are all aware of the
value of dwarf and
intermediate evergreens
in wintery landscape.
However, in addition to
evergreens, I also seek out
plants that will provide a
touch of red, especially the
red-twigged dogwoods,
cultivars of our native
winterberry, Ilex
verticillata, and crab apple
varieties that keep their
fruit in winter such as
Malus Donald Wyman.
And dont stop with color.
Many plants have
interesting textures that
will differentiate them
from their neighbors. For
instance all Spirea
bumalda cultivars are
delicate and lacy and look
beautiful in front of a
coarser shrub like a
Prunus cistena.
Of course for eons, the routine of putting the garden to bed
was a rite of fall and by mid November every last herbaceous
plant was consigned to the compost pile.
But with this compulsiveness we deny ourselves the pleasure
of enjoying the stalks and seed-heads of perennials
silhouetted against the snow, or as part of a snow-less winter
picture. So leave all robust perennials and grasses standing
until spring. As an added bonus, their seeds become an
excellent source of food for the chickadees, goldfinch and
other birds that keep us company through the coldest
Here is a partial list of perennials and grasses that will
withstand the rigors of winter: Rudbeckia, Sedum Autumn
Joy and Matrona, most Astilbe, all varieties of Miscanthus
and Panicum virgatum, as well as the smaller spiky
Helictotrichon sempervirens.
Art and artifacts
And finally, do not overlook the decorative value of garden
art and artifacts in the
stark winter landscape.
Not everything that is
hand-made and precious
needs to come inside in
With clean lines and dark
colors, all metal objects
show off beautifully in the
snow. In my garden I
have four unique
sculptures, all created
from found metal by Bill
Heise who for many years
lived and worked in
Burlington. Three
elegant birds stand tall in
the flowerbeds. The
fourth, a whimsical Spirit
Keeper with his sword
and outstretched wings,
looks down on us from his
perch part way up
towards the barn.
I also use metalwork of
the mass-produced
variety, including a row
of freestanding trellises
that mark the back of
the garden and a four-
way rose arbor that
creates a strong focal
In addition we leave our
hardwood furniture
outside year-round. On a
snowy January day the
patio chairs with their
huge cushions of snow,
are like the ghosts of
summer past as they wait for imaginary visitors.
!udith Irven is a landscape designer and Green Works member.
She and her photographer husband, Dick Conrad, live and
garden in Goshen, situated at 1700 on the western slopes of the
Green Mountains. She writes about her gardening experiences at
Photo Credits: Dick Conrad, Goshen, VT
Above: The Sprit Keeper by Bill Heise, watches over the winter garden.
Below: Snow covered stone walls are anotherr way to reveal the gardens
skeleton in winter.
continued from page 8
Gathering on Bristol Pond
On the beautiful evening of August 27

about ten Green Works members gathered
at Bristol Pond for a canoe and kayak
summer twilight meeting. The group was
led by Dan Redondo of Vermont Wetland
Plant Supply Company. Dan shared his
expertise on the identification of the
numerous species of wetland plants found
in this unique and diverse ecosystem. He
explained his methods for collection and
propagation of many of the species found
there. In addition to the interesting variety
of plants that were identified, attendees
were treated to a close encounter with a
Great Blue Heron and a spectacular sky at
sunset. The evening was summed up best
by Andrea Morgante who said, I just
wanted to let you know what a good
time I had at the wetland plant
twilight meeting with Dan and a great
group of the Green Works family. It
was such a familiar group of people
who have known each other for a really
long time and are still eager to learn
and share our love of plants and the
natural world. We hope to plan
another canoe and kayak trip for next
summer, perhaps at a different
location. This is a wonderful way to
spend a summer evening and is an
opportunity not to be missed.
Creating a Fruit Tree Ecosystem
On September 3, 2016 six Green Works
members gathered at Paquette Full of
Posies for a presentation by Meghan
Giroux of Vermont Edible Landscapes on how to
create a fruit tree ecosystem. Items discussed
were how to increase biodiversity around
fruiting trees; utilizing plants that accumulate
nutrients, creating a habitat for beneficial
insects, and fixing nitrogen in the soil.
Meghan spoke about how the use of polycultures
promotes a diverse mixture of species growing
together in symbiosis. Creating polycultures
around fruit trees can reduce the need for offsite
inputs, increase biodiversity in the orchard, and
provide various secondary yields such as
medicinal herbs, perennial vegetables, and much
more. It was a beautiful late summer evening
to gather together and explore new ideas.
Green Works Summer Twilights Recap
Llmore Poots Pruit Tree & 8erry Nursery
Recent PSS department history, updates on meetings and
annual trials, and fall course offerings, make up the News
from the U in this issue. Previous issues of the DIRT have
provided a brief background on the past history of the
Plant and Soil Science department, as part of our 50

anniversary this year. These were adapted from our report
prepared this year for a group of 3 reviewers from other
institutionsa review campus departments go through
every 10 years of so. Here is the last segment on this
history, provided as we prepare for our pizza party
celebration at the Hort. Farm on Oct. 11 for students,
faculty and alums.
The most recent departmental review prior to the one
this past spring of 2014, was in 1999, with a review in the
college in 2000-2001 while Alan Gotlieb again served as
chair. Alan Gotlieb retired in 2003 and a national search
for a new chairperson began. Jane Kolodinsky, chair of
Department of Community and Applied Economics served
as interim PSS chairperson in 2003-2004 with an advisory
group of PSS faculty including Don Ross, Mark Starrett,
and Lorraine Berkett. Deborah Neher arrived as the new
chair in 2004. Ecological Agriculture was just launched as
a new major in 2004 to join Sustainable Landscape
Horticulture from 2001, together replacing the general
Plant and Soil Science major.
Since 2004, the department increased efficiency of
instruction through strategic hires and restructuring of
curriculum offerings, introducing non-majors to our
programs through general introductory courses, further
increasing quality and quantity of undergraduate and
graduate students. To increase the visibility and be able to
staff our courses, an increasing number of classes are being
offered through CE. This attracts a wider audience of non-
majors and non-traditional students. We now offer
several on-line courses to further improve accessibility to
our courses.
Our curriculum reform aimed at embedding our majors in
a strong natural science framework. Replacing PSS 11
with two semesters of general biology and one semester of
ecology is one example of restructuring that occurred. We
maintain flexibility in choices for some of these courses to
cater to graduate-school-bound students. For example,
students have a choice between introductory biology and
chemistry courses and those for the respective science
Since 2009, the department has been shifting some
instruction from outside the growing season to summer. By
shifting more coursework into the summer we are hoping
to provide students with strong, authentic field experiences
at UVM farms while providing a faster track to graduation.
There are still many structural barriers, inherent in and
particular to UVM, to
enrolling in summer classes.
Despite the flexibility and
entrepreneurship of our
faculty, summer enrollment
has been low given minimal
support from central
administration on financial
aid and marketing. We are
hopeful to improve
enrollments with new
institutional leadership who
are committed to changing
attitudes towards summer programs.
PSS gained an agricultural systems ecology position in
2006 (Ernesto Mendez) with teaching responsibility in
Environmental Studies, and established a tenure-track
landscape design position (Sarah Lovell). Josef Grres was
hired for ecological soil management in 2008 and Yolanda
Chen as a vegetable agroecologist in 2008, and as
replacements upon the resignations of Wendy Sue Harper
and Milton Tignor, respectively. Stephanie Hurley was
hired in 2011 to replace Sarah Lovell upon her resignation
in the landscape design position. Lorraine Berkett retired
from her extension plant pathology position in 2011. Her
extension appointment was used to backfill extension
support for Ann Hazelrigg who is now the sole extension
plant pathologist in the department. Terry Bradshaw, who
manages the HREC (newly renamed in 2014 the
Horticulture Research and Education Center) and is
completing his PhD, joined the department faculty this fall
as a Research Associate.
Fall course offerings in the department include the large
Home and Garden Horticulture (149 students) taught by
Mark Starrett, Introduction to Ecological Agriculture (75,
Katlyn Morris) and Fundamentals of Soil Science (91, Josef
Gorres). Other courses include Entomology and Pest
Management (24, Yolanda Chen), Woody Landscape Plants
(25, Starrett), Landscape Design Fundamentals (18, Annie
White who is filling in for Stephanie Hurley on leave this
year), Turfgrass Management (14, Sid Bosworth), Soil
Morphology (13, Gorres), Quantitative Thinking (12, Scott
Merrill), Ag Runoff Treatment (9, Hurley). A couple of
courses taught by professionals outside the department
include Drawing and Painting Botanicals (15, Jane Neroni)
and Landscape Design for Pollinators (12, Jane Sorensen).
My online courses taught through Continuing Education
have fewer students in the fall (131 total) than in spring
semesters (220 last spring). These courses, made up
mainly of non-majors with a majority outside the College of
Agriculture, include Home Fruit Growing (50), Indoor
Plants (24), Garden Flowers (42), and Flowers and Foliage
(15). Upcoming during the winter session Ill be offering an
news from the U
by Dr. Leonard Perry - UVM Extension Horticulturist
News from the UDr. Leonard Perry
Summer is a great time at universities if you like it quiet
with no meetings, and ability to park even with the much
reduced spaces due to construction! I'm spending much
time outside with perennials, building stock for next year's
freezing studies, working on field trials (currently 190
different plants), and accumulating coralbells (Heuchera)
for both field and freezing studies funded this past year by
the NH Plant Growers Endowment. I"m currently up to
about 60 cultivars of coralbells, including very new
introductions and new villosa hybrids which some growers
question their hardiness (as they are from France), hence
this study. I'll keep you posted here and on my website
( of this and other research your
association has helped fund. Data is collected, I'm just
waiting for some rainy days to get it written up.
We once again planted about 100 varieties of annuals at the
All-America Selections Display Garden at Burlington's
Waterfront Park the first week of June, thanks again to
help and collaboration with Burlington Parks and
Recreation. This is the garden that we won a national AAS
award for this past year. As in previous years, I'll be
posting the plant listing and ratings at the end of the
summer on my website. Here also you can find lists and
results from the past several years. This year my assistant
Sarah Kingsley Richards and I think we have some great
combinations put together, with a focus on about 20
different petunias (near the boathouse), several new coleus
and several new sweet potato vines. One of my favorites
and perhaps most unusual is the new Pretty Much Picasso
petunia, violet purple with a lime green rim. Another
outstanding new and unusual selection is the mealycup
sage Salvia Sallyfun Blue Emotion, tall, blue florets with
white eyes.
This year's AAS garden features about 50% plants from
Pleasant View Gardens (Proven Winners and Selections
and trials), about 40% from DS Cole Growers, and about
10% from seed (All-America Selections and others). I hope
you get to see these gardens if in Burlington (at the foot of
College St. by the ECHO center and boathouse), not only for
the plants, but as the beds are planned to be different next
year. Due to planned construction and road reconfiguration
beginning after Labor Day this year, the main two front
beds will disappear forever, with a new front bed planned
closer to the boathouse in the grassy area.
On campus, the good news is that thanks to federal
stimulus money, the state greatly reduced cuts to UVM and
Extension. Coupled with support from the college, no
on-campus Extension faculty member (to my
knowledge) was cut this coming fiscal year. However once
this money runs out in a couple years, we may be back to
round two of big budget cuts.
So if opportunities arise in your future to support Extension
with your legislators or even UVM administration, it can
surely help. Our new plant science building (Jeffords Hall)
is now enclosed, with connection underway to the UVM
greenhouse. We are still scheduled to move in next
summer. In our department, our fairly recent faculty
member Sarah Lovell will be returning home to take a
similar position in landscape architecture at the University
of Illinois, so her design courses will be taught by yet un-
known person this next year, with a new search hopefully
in our future. Main research at the Hort Farm now
includes two projects of Dr. Lorraine Berkett-- a USDA
funded large project (recently refunded and highly rated) on
organic apple production (the reason many of the crabap-
ples were cut down in order to reduce scab and other
diseases) with full details online
(, and the third year of
trials on hardy grape varieties (
Submitted by Leonard Perry
instrumental in the development of the Learning Landscape
Project at URI. In 2008, he was recognized for his many
contributions to the green industry and received the
prestigious honor of being one of the first to be inducted into
the RINLA Hall of Fame. He was also inducted into the
Rhode Island Agricultural Hall of Fame.

Donations in Ken's memory may be made to The Kenneth
Lagerquist - RINLA Horticultural Scholarship, URI
Foundation Acct ED99, 79 Upper College Road, Kingston,
RI, 02881.

Scott Pfister, former VT State Pathologist and Green
Works supporter has left his position in June at the
Vermont Forest Protection Department. Scott has taken a
position with USDA-APHIS in Washington, DC and will be
coordinating the USDAs programs for the Asian longhorned
beetle, emerald ash borer, and firewood pest mitigation. We
will miss him and wish him and his family well.
(Continued from page 9)
continued on page 14
Early in 2013 the Green Works Vermont Certified Horticulturist
committee continued the review process in an effort to revise and
finalize the new VCH Study Manual. It has been 10 years or so
since the last revision of the manual. Green Works board of
directors felt that an update to the manual was needed in an
effort to keep the manual current by rewriting and editing
selected existing chapters. It also was identified that the
manual should include new chapters to cover emerging
topics in the field, such as sustainability, native and
invasive plants.
Over the past few years, revisions were made to various
sections of the current VCH manual by Green Works
members and these new chapters were archived for
inclusion into a future version of the VCH manual. In
early 2012 the board of directors and the VCH committee
came to feel that even more chapters required revision, and that a
complete rewrite was needed. With a small group of volunteers
working on the revisions, the prospect of rewriting the entire
manual seemed daunting and we began exploring other ideas.
The VCH committee began evaluating the feasibility of adopting,
in whole or in part, a manual from one of the other New England
states. Many states around the country, including the New
England states, have certification programs. We also grant
reciprocity within the New England states when it comes to
certification. The Massachusetts and Maine manuals had both
recently been revised and we approached both organizations about
working together on this. Adopting a manual from one of these
states meant that Green Works would have to come to an
agreement regarding compensation. In the end, we came to an
agreement with the Maine Nursery & Landscaping Association
that would work within our budget.
Since early March, 2013, the VCH committee has been editing the
Maine manual for adoption, integrating pieces from our own
existing manual to create the new VHC study manual .
The first effort was to ensure the manual was covering
material that was expected of a certified professional. It
was also deemed important that applicants studying the
manual would gain a similar understanding of subjects
as had the current VCHers. The Maine Nursery and
Landscape Association, has three certifications, Maine
Certified Nursery Professional (MCN), Maine Certified
Landscape Professional (MCL), and Maine Certified
Sustainable Landscaper (MCSL). Upon reviewing
Maines manual it was determined that each of these designations
was already encompassed by the Vermont Certified Horticulturist
designation. It must be that the VCHers are Lumpers to
Maines Splitters, to borrow a taxonomy joke.
The editing is completed and a new test is readied, with special
thanks to Dr. Leonard Perry and past members who have helped
with this project. The VCH committee looks forward to officially
launching the new VCH Manual in late fall. As one prominent
volunteer put it, This manual is such a valuable resource. It
really belongs on all of our bookshelves. If you are interested in
obtaining a copy of the new VCH Study Manual, contact the
Green Works office.
VCH Committee Update - a New Study Manual
online course once again through Continuing Education
( on Home Hops Growing.
Thanks to your association, and help from Burlington
Parks and Recreation, we had another good year of display
at the All-America Selections flower garden at the
Burlington Waterfront Park. This year we also massed
several perennials which were still in full bloom in early
fall and looking outstandingAgastache Black Adder,
Coreopsis Route 66, and Coreopsis Full Moon I particular.
Well see how well they overwinter there. Last years
perennials that managed to survive the winter, didnt
survive the human factor during the Burlington marathon
in late May. Full results of late summer ratings, and
photos of the beds, can be found online (
aaswp.html). Some of the top performers included the
Cleome Senorita Rosalita, and the newer shorter Pequena
Rosalita; Lobularia Dark Night which contrasted nicely
with the AAS winner Marigold Moonsong Deep Orange;
the Pennisetum Rubrum which alternated in our front bed
nicely with the new Pennisetum Skyrocket; Petunias
Whispers Blue and Supertunia Rose Veined; and double
Profusion Zinnias (AAS winners) Deep Salmon and Hot
If you operate a greenhouse or retail business, you should
consider and check out the Northeast Greenhouse
Conference, Nov. 5 and 6, at our NEW LOCATION in
Springfield, MA at the Mass Mutual Center right
downtown. Full details, program, directions, and
registration can be found online (
Short on pesticide credits? There are many opportunities
at this meeting, during the 3 concurrent tracks both days,
to obtain these. Well also have the latest revised edition of
the Floriculture Pest Guide available at the meeting at a
special reduced price. Our dynamic keynote speaker from
Ball Horticulture, Chris Beytes, travels the world visiting
gardens and horticulture firms, and will give the latest
trends from our region, the country and abroad. I hope to
see you there.
continued from page 12
No matter what position you play on the professional
landscape field, we are all in sales. Every day at work we
spend time selling the value of what we offer to others. We
sell it to our bosses when we describe the amount of work
we accomplish. We sell the value to our clients when we
present them with solutions for their landscaping needs.
And sometimes we even have to sell it to ourselves.
Like it or not, we are all on the sales team. How can Green
Works members compete in a marketplace where some
companies offer a lesser product at a lower cost? The better
you are at communicating the value of your products and
services, the larger the share of that market goes to your
company to produce high quality landscapes. Here are
some tips to improve your game:
1) Believe in what you offer.
2) Be honest.
3) Help others get what they want.
How successful do you think you will be at selling a product
you dont believe is worth the asking price? How can your
customer trust that you have the heartiest tree, a unique
design approach, or the most eco-friendly maintenance plan
if you dont believe it? If youre having trouble convincing
yourself that your service is worth others paying for, try
parting with your hard-earned cash for the same service.
Once you overcome the excuses you might have, you will be
better equipped to respond to a customers objections to
price, timing, etc. Experience how quickly that tree
establishes or how happy your spouse is with your design
solutions and you will be more prepared to see the value of
your product from the customers perspective.
Now, if your current product doesnt have attributes that
you believe others will want, then change it! (Or fold up
shop and start looking for something you can honestly
support). Because honesty is the best policy. Isnt that one
of the first qualities you look for from the person youre
trying to buy from? The salesperson has long-been given
the stereotype of being a self-serving con artist, looking to
convince you to spend money on something you dont want
or need. Although there are those who exemplify this
description, lets not allow the exception to become the rule.
To have a successful business, I believe you must truthfully
present solutions to clients problems and to consistently
provide the quality you promise.
An honest approach in sales will help you to achieve
famous salesman Zig Ziglars mantra: You can have
everything in life you want, if you will just help enough
other people get what they want. Ask the right questions
and take time to hear the answers and then you will know
exactly what your client wants. I mean more than just how
many shrubs or what size tree. Dig deeper to find what
they really want. Do they need reassurance they are going
to get back their landscape investment? Or maybe they
want a place to relax after a stressful day at work? Your
plants, your design, your meticulous care for their
landscape may provide exactly what they are looking for.
Show them how it can, and you will find that selling comes
more easily.
Believe in what you do, be honest and follow through, and
help others get what they want. Practice these three tips to
improve the success of your sales pitch. Game on!
Heres the Pitch
by David Burton
Prides Corner Farms is a family-
owned, regional grower. Prides
has built its business over the
last 30+ years by offering
incredible product diversity
coupled with customer service
that has set the standard for the
industry. Our goal is to be your
best business partner, one that
helps you grow, helps you sell
and, therefore, to be more
Prides Corner grows over 2200
varieties of plants on 400+ acres,
supplying our independent
garden center, wholesale yard and
landscaper customer base with lush, colorful, retail-ready
product weekly. Our product is offered at the height of its
salability to ensure it sells quickly at the highest profit
point possible. We, like our customers, strive to keep the
product moving. With our incredible selection of trees,
shrubs, perennials, groundcovers, grasses, roses, fruits,
vegetables and herbs, we always have superb-looking
product to fill the shelves. Even better, we always have
the selection to put together a weekly order. We have
fine-tuned the logistics to get the plants to our customers
on time and ready to sell, helping you control your
inventory and your costs!
Branded Programs
Branded Programs and plants are a shining example of
what makes Prides Corner different. As a member of all
the major national growing groups, Prides Corner has
access to the latest and greatest new plants in Proven
Winners, Endless Summer,
David Austin Roses,
Knockout Roses and others.
These plants are coupled
with great stories that make
these plants and brands
very compelling to the
consumer. Further, we have
created our own branded
programs such as Saras
Superb Herbs, Pink Ribbon
Plants, Goodness Grows
Edibles and White Flower
Farm to provide
independent garden centers
and landscapers with the
ability to sell a diversified
group of plants. Plants in the branded programs are
packaged in such a way that they speak to the consumer
and appeal to their emotions, driving sales.
Industry-Leading Logistics
As a regional nursery serving the northeast, from Maine
to Virginia and west through Ohio, Prides Corner can
assure you that your plants are close by, acclimatized to
our unique climate and ready to thrive.
Our plant diversity is unmatched. Our ability to get you
what you need when you need it is the industry standard.
Our focus on inventory control and branded plants that
appeal to your customers and promote sales is
unmatched. With all these partnership-building
superlatives, we have something for everyone who wants
to make their business more profitable. Let us show you
how Prides Corner can make a difference in your
Supplier Profile - Pride's Corner Farms
Wholesale Grower - Family owned for more than 30 Years
Participate in Green Works
2014 Industry Awards Program
Scope out your projects and
take lots of photos this season!
Deadline to enter is December 5, 2014
The 2014 winners will be featured at
the 2015 Vermont Flower Show and
upcoming newspaper insert.
The loading docks at Prices Corner Farms
P.O. Box 92
N. Ferrisburgh, VT 05473
Longtime member of Green Works Andrea
Morgante of Hinesburg, was recognized in
September with an award for her
community conservation efforts.
Andrea received the Art Gibb Award for
Individual Leadership from the Vermont
Natural Resources Council at VNRCs
annual meeting Thursday September 18 at
the Old Lantern Inn & Barn in Charlotte.
Andrea is a tireless advocate for natural
resources and strong communities who has
been able to build bridges among many
different constituencies, said Brian Shupe,
VNRCs executive director. "It is an honor to recognize her
with this award."
Our congratulations go out to Andrea for this award and
her continued efforts in community conservation through
her business and beyond.
About The Arthur Gibb Award for Individual
Leadership: The Arthur Gibb award has been given
since 2006 to a Vermont resident who embodies qualities
similar to those of the late Arthur Art Gibb, and has who
made a lasting contribution to their community, region or
state in advancing smart growth policies.
First elected to the Vermont Legislature
in 1962, Gibb was deeply involved in
passing legislation to ban billboards,
enact the states bottle deposit law,
regulate junkyards and modernize
statutes governing local and regional
planning. He served on the commission
that laid the groundwork for Act 250 and
served twelve years on the Vermont
Environmental Board, including one year
as Chair.
Previous recipients of the award (starting
with the most recent) include Bob Klein,
long-time director of the Vermont chapter of the Nature
Conservancy; John Ewing, long-time smart growth
advocate and co-founder of the Vermont Forum on Sprawl
(later known as Smart Growth Vermont); Gus Seelig,
executive director of the Vermont Housing and
Conservation Board; Rob Woolmington, attorney, Witten,
Woolmington & Campbell; Paul Bruhn, executive director
of the Preservation Trust of Vermont; Robert Lloyd,
Tinmouth, retired; Connie Snow, executive director of the
Windham and Windsor Housing Trust. For more
information about the Vermont Natural Resources Council
visit or contact: Brian Shupe, VNRC Executive
Director, 802-223-2328 x120.
Member Andrea Morgante Receives 2014 Art Gibb Award
Eastern White Pine Needle Problems
Since 2010, eastern white pine trees have been plagued with a
curious needle browning and drop in mid spring. The cause of
this needle cast has been identified as either of two (and
sometimes both) needle cast diseases Canavirgella needle
cast and brown spot needle blight. I discussed this problem in
a Dirt a few years back, but this spring the needle browning
was especially apparent, and we received a number of
inquiries from concerned homeowners and professionals, so it
may bear repeating.
Canavirgella needle cast is caused by the pathogen
Canavirgella banfieldii. The browning is timed with spore
production, which occurs in elongated fruiting bodies on the
underside of the needles, which drop off, typically in late May
or early June, leaving the tree with a diminished crown and
overall thin appearance. The fruiting bodies of canavirgella
are elongated dark ovals on the underside of the needle.
Brown spot needle blight, caused by Mycosphaerella
dearnessii, exhibits similar browning of the needles from a
distance, but on close inspection, the fungus produces small
round fruiting bodies surrounded by a sharply demarcated red
to reddish brownish band or spot surrounding the fruiting
body. Again, as with canavirgella, infection by brown spot
causes needle drop by early summer, with similar thin crowns
resulting, as only the current year needles remain. Both of
these pathogens, as with most needle blights and casts, causes
browning of infected needle tissues the spring following
Although healthy trees can withstand needle loss for a couple
of years, reduced photosynthetic capacity will eventually take
its toll on weaker or less vigorous trees, and can cause
premature mortality. Also, gradual weakening of the trees
can predispose them to other opportunistic pests, as well as
lowering their abilty to withstand environmental assaults
(drought, excessive heat or cold, flooding).
Of course there are other needle casts and blights that attack
eastern white pine, as well as other five needle pines (Swiss
stone pine, limber pine, Japanese white pine, others), notably
lophodermium needle cast, but I have not observed as much of
these since 2010 as the first two. And, as you recall, the
disease cycle of these white pine needle diseases, as with most
other needle diseases of spruces and firs, as well as hard
pines, hemlocks, and Douglas fir, starts with the initial
infection of tender young needles in the spring, when they
emerge. Symptoms do not become noticeable until later that
summer, or more often, not until the following spring, when
the diseased tissues brown and drop, after having had the
chance to release new spores to begin the disease cycle anew
in the current seasons emerging needles. So, control is
achieved by preventing the new infections in the spring,
especially during periods of cool wet weather, which provides
optimal conditions for spore germination and infection. The
needles from last year, which are already exhibiting browning
by the time the spores are emerging, are a lost cause; the
period for protecting those needles was the prior spring when
infection was occurring on the emerging and tender needles
during cool wet weather.
2014 gave us a drier spring than we have had the previous
few years. Hopefully those dry conditions will have limited
the opportunity for infection of the 2014 crop of needles, and
we wont have the kind of alarming widespread and dramatic
early season needle browning and drop we have seen since
Hemlock Pests
Elongate hemlock scale was first noted on nursery stock in
Vermont in 2013. I mentioned the pest and its appearance in
one of my 2013 Dirt articles. This summer, we had our first
confirmation of elongate hemlock scale on native trees in
Vermont. The infested trees are in a stand of hemlocks
already known to be infested with hemlock woolly adelgid, in
Windham County. This represents the first confirmed case of
EHS in wild trees in Vermont.
This introduced pest of hemlock and other conifers (spruces
and firs) is widespread across the range of Canadian hemlock,
and is known to accelerate woolly adelgid decline of hemlock
where the two pests occur together. The EHS infestation in
Windsor County came as no surprise, as the pest is known to
be established in western Massachusetts, and the Connecticut
River Valley provides an excellent pathway for introduction of
forest pests to Vermont from the south. What this means for
hemlock in Vermont is as yet uncertain. Obviously this is a
serious matter, and management of the pest poses the same
difficulties as does HWA in native stands. In those areas
where both pests occur, we should expect to see accelerated
decline of host trees. On the bright side, both can be
controlled successfully in managed settings using a variety of
treatments, from horticultural oils to systemics, and there is
work being done on beneficial insect controls as well.
Pollinators and Neonicitinoid Insecticides
There has been a great deal of interest in the observed and
reported declines in pollinator numbers and general health
over the previous several years. Colony collapse disorder, or
CCD, which has thankfully not been reported in Vermont as
yet, has been responsible for losses of commercial honeybee
hives in other states and around the world. Although the
cause of CCD has not been confirmed, and there are several
factors that may be contributing to CCD, the use and
application of systemic neonicitinoid insecticides has been
coming under increasing scrutiny in the United States and
abroad. Additionally, there is concern that this group of
insecticides has been contributing to declines in wild
pollinator populations. So much so that the Vermont
Endangered Species committee has recommended that three
species of bumblebee (the rusty-patched bumblebee, Bombus
affinis, the yellow-banded bumblebee, B. terricola, and the
Ashton cuckoo bumblebee, B. ashtoni) be added to the State
endangered and threatened species list, in an effort to limit
their decline in Vermont.
VT Agency of Agriculture News/Updates - Fall 2014
by Tim Schmalz
continued on page 18
The neonicitinoids are chemically similar to nicotine (hence
the name), but they are longer lasting than nicotine in the
environment. They work by interfering with the
transmission of stimuli in the insect nervous system,
resulting in an excess of acetylcholine in the system which
causes paralysis and death. These
chemicals bind more tightly to
relevant receptors in the insect
nervous system than they do in
mammalian nervous systems,
lowering the potential toxicity to
humans and other animals. They are
valuable for pest control both for their
systemic properties (acting
throughout the tissues of the treated
plant), the very low effective does,
and their low mammalian toxicity,
making them a considerably safer
alternative to older classes of
insecticides that are more dangerous
to human applicators. As of this
writing, imidicloprid, the first commercially available
neonicitinoid, is one of the most widely used insecticides
worldwide, and plays an important role in most integrated
pest management programs. In addition to imidicloprid
(Merit/Marathon), neonicitinoid insecticides include
dinotefuran (Safari), clothianidin, and thiamethoxam.
As many of you know, neonicitinoids, especially imidacloprid,
are used in a wide variety of applications, ranging from
turfgrass and ornamental protection formulations, to crop
and seed coating applications, even in flea and tick drops we
use on house pets. As general use pesticides, they are
recommended for protection from piercing/sucking insects
(aphids and hemlock woolly adelgid, for example), wood
borers (bronze birch and emerald ash borer), chewing insects
(gypsy moth and Japanese and Colorado potato beetles), soil
borne pests (fungus gnats), and many others, and are
available to commercial applicators and homeowners alike.
In many cases, pest resistance to pyrethroids, carbamates,
and organophosphate pesticides has left operators with few
other options. Obviously, these are important tools in the
struggle against insect pests, and are typically the go-to
However, they are very toxic to all insects, even beneficial
ones. Improperly applied, they will kill pollenating insects
just as effectively as the pest species. The effective doses are
sometimes orders of magnitude smaller than those for the
older insecticide groups, which means even a minute amount
in the wrong place can have devastating effects on non-target
insects. The potential routes of exposure to beneficial insects
are being explored, and the role these chemicals may be
playing in CCD and pollinator decline is being taken seriously
by governments and policymakers around the globe. For
example, clothianidin is used as a seed treatment, to protect
seeds in storage, and to provide a measure of protection at
planting and pre-germination. However, the systemic nature
of the chemical means trace quantities occur in the mature
plant. In the case of sunflowers, for example, detectable
amounts of clothianidin are found in pollen and nectar of
flowers on sunflowers which had only the seed coating
treatment, and no subsequent systemic treatments. Whether
these amounts of pesticide are sufficient to cause problems for
bees foraging on the plants is not certain at this stage. But, if
the pesticide is acting in concert or synergistically with other
factors (parasites like varroa and tracheal mites, lack of
suitable forage/loss of habitat, poor breeding, etc.), it may
contributing to CCD. What is certain is that these seed
treatments, when applied in a
manner that allows dust to drift off-
site during planting operations, have
been linked to and can cause
pollinator mortality when the
chemical deposits on wildflowers
adjacent to fields where planting is
In Europe and the US, there have
been moves to prohibit the use of
neonicitinoid insecticides in
agricultural and landscape settings.
For example, a bumblebee dieoff in
2013 in linden trees recently treated
with dinotefuran and two similar
subsequent incidents in 2014 prompted the Oregon
Department of Agriculture to issue a moratorium on the use
of the dinotefuran and imidicloprid on linden and other Tilia
species. The European Food Safety Authority stated in
January 2013 that continued neonicitinoid use posed an
unacceptably high risk to bees and other pollenators,
sparking a firestorm of debate in EU agricultural circles. Use
of imidicloprid on sunflower and maize seed in France has
been prohibited, and several seed treatments have been
banned in Germany due to concerns over CCD and bee
mortality. The restrictions on their use in the European
Union are far from universal however, and the debate there is
just as intense as it is here. For example, in the UK, there
has been resistance to the calls for bans on these chemicals,
where their use remains widespread.
Closer to home, the Vermont legislature last session tasked
the Agency of Agriculture with investigating the potential
impacts of neonicitinoid pesticides on bees and other
pollinators, as well as the possible impacts that they may
have on human health (2013-2014, Act 159). Obviously, the
Agency is concerned with the fate of pesticides in the
environment and any unintended effects of their use, just as
we are concerned with sustainable and effective pest
management. The potential impact on pest management of
listing three bumblebee species as endangered or threatened
is another broad area for discussion among the regulatory
and agricultural communities. Expect a healthy and detailed
debate on the matter in the upcoming months and years
Personnel Changes at the Agency
The Agency of Agriculture is pleased to announce that we
have hired a new Pesticide Certification and Training
coordinator. Matt Wood, the former C&T coordinator, is
being replaced at that post by Linda Boccuzzo, who until July
worked at the Department of Health. She will now be taking
over the testing, outreach, recordkeeping and other duties
Matt had been doing. Matt is still with us, but he will now be
supervising the division field agents full time. Linda can be
reached at (802) 828-6417, or by email at!
continued from page 17
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New England Grows, the Northeast's premier commercial
horticulture conference and exposition, will be held Wednesday,
February 4 - Friday, February 6, 2015 at the Boston Convention &
Exhibition Center. Mark your calendars and register before mid-
January to save.

"Bold Ideas. Big Results." is this year's conference theme. With
more than 30 innovative educational sessions planned and new
vendor sales exceeding expectations, New England Grows 2015
promises to be bigger and better than ever.

New England Grows' speaker line up includes Doug Tallamy,
Ph.D., Ed Gilman, Ph.D., Toby Hemenway, George Hudler, Ph.D.,
Raymond Cloyd, Ph.D., John Kaminski, Ph.D., John Kennedy,
Kelly Norris, Jan Johnsen, and Brad Lancaster. These and other
great minds will address the critical topics of our day like climate
change, permaculture, tree preservation, water conservation,
biological controls, soil health, native plants, low-input design, as
well as important business-building advice such as motivating
meaningful organizational change and working smarter with

Grows' popular Garden Center Success sessions will be peppered
throughout the three-day conference and feature retail wizards
like Jim Hole on "Building the Garden Center of the Future"; Kelly
Norris on "Chic Plants for Hip Gardeners"; and Rick Segel's "Five
Step Formula for Retail Success."

At New England Grows, horticulture professionals can obtain most | 800 442 8821
Ntw ulcntton oi
scitNct otontt:
Design &
New England Grows
February 2015 Program Highlights
continued on page 21
2015 Vermont Flower Show Shrub/Tree Forcing List
This list is a guideline. If you have material available that is not listed please let us know, we may be able to use it.
Contact Central Display Chair Melita Bass at 802.349.6760 or . If you have plants headed to
the compost pile please consider donating them to the Flower Show! But we do need healthy plants with flower buds
to ensure successful forcing and color. If you have a large quantity of conifers that you plan to over-winter, please
consider loaning them. They do not require forcing and can be returned to you after the the show. THANK YOU!
2015 Vermont Flower Perennial Forcing List
This list is a guideline. If you have material available that is not listed please let us know, we may be able to use it. Contact
Central Display Chair Melita Bass at 802.349.6760 or . Please make sure plants are healthy and
have bloom times prior to May 15 if applicable. this is key for successful forcing and color. THANK YOU!
of their professional continuing education (CEU) credits under one
roof with recertification opportunities for Pesticide Licenses,
NOFA, APLD, LA CES, ISA, CTSP, and most state association

The Grows tradeshow floor will be buzzing with 500+ of the
industry's leading suppliers ready to share information and make
deals on everything from birdhouses to backhoes. Sprint Sessions
on the Common Ground stage, Learning Hubs, live
demonstrations, idea swap tables and more round out an
interactive exposition that can't be missed.

Discover Grows, a new fast-paced video recently launched by New
England Grows, provides a snapshot of everything a visitor can
expect to enjoy when they attend this important industry event.
Check it out on Grows' home page at

Enjoy special savings, as well as two, new registration options:
Conference & Expo or Expo Only, when you register by
January 15. Save even more when four or more people from your
company sign up to attend. Affordable admission fees, combined
with exclusive deals on the tradeshow floor, make New England
Grows the best place to do business this winter.

Keep in touch all year long when you join New England Grows'
growing community on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and
Pinterest. For the latest program and registration information visit
continued from page 19
Please use the space below to nominate individuals for consideration by the
Awards Committee for the Associations s annual achievement awards.
We ask that you submit a paragraph supporting this individuals eligibility
for the award. Past recipients are not eligible to receive the same award a
second time. Please see the reverse side of this sheet for past recipients of
the awards. Nominations must be received no later than November
1, 2014. Please include a supporting paragraph with your
nomination(s) and mail to PO Box 92, N. Ferrisburgh, VT 05473.
Send electronic submissions to
For more information: 802.425.5117.
Horticultural Achievement Award - This award is given to individuals
connected to the horticultural industry in Vermont, who are over 40 years
of age and whose accomplishments have advanced our industry
educationally, by plant development or growing, through literature, or
through outstanding personal effort. This award is the most prestigious
and distinguished that can be received from Green Works/VNLA.
Nominations cannot be accepted without a supporting paragraph.
Nominee: ________________________________________
Environmental Awareness Award - This award is given in recognition
of an individual that has implemented an environmentally sound practice
that contributes to the protection of our environment. Nominations
cannot be accepted without a supporting paragraph.
Nominee: _________________________________________
NENA Young Nursery Professional of the Year Award - This is an
annual award established by the New England Nursery Association. Its
purpose is to reward, to honor and to encourage participation, achievement
and growth by an individual who is involved in a related horticultural
industry and has not reached the age of 40 years, who has shown
involvement in his or her state and/or regional nurserymens association,
has contributed to the growth and success of their company of employment
and has portrayed an image to the public of what our products and services
can do for them. Nominations cannot be accepted without a
supporting paragraph.
Retailer of the Year Award - This award will be presented annually to
a retail garden center or greenhouse operation that stands apart for their
excellence in any or all of the following categories: customer service,
quality of plant material, knowledge of staff, creativity and innovations in
marketing and presentation of retail space, and overall customer
experience and satisfaction. Nominations cannot be accepted without
a supporting paragraph.
Nominee: ___________________________________________
Allen B. Crane Horticultural Employee Acknowledgement Award
NEW! - This award will be presented annually and is being sponsored by
Claussens Florist & Greenhouse in honor of Allen B. Crane, head grower
there for over 42 years. Allen was a great friend, wonderful colleague and
an incredible grower. Allen passed away in 2013 after a yearlong battle
with cancer. This award is being established in Allens honor to recognize
the employees that make a difference in the horticultural industry. A cash
prize will be awarded to the recipient in the amount of $275. Nominees
must meet the following criteria: they should be an employee of a member
business with a minimum of 5 years employment with that business;
nominees must be employed in the horticultural industry, which could also
include the field of education; and nominees should be exemplary leaders
and display an ability to grow and excel in the workplace and beyond.
Nominations must include a supporting paragraph that reflects the
above criteria.
Nominee Name _______________________________________
Your Name
Your Signature Company/Affiliation
Nomination Ballot: for Green Works/VNLA Awards
Past Recipients
Horticultural Achievement Award
2013 Leo Roberts, Horsford Gardens & Nursery
2012 Don and Lela Avery, Cadys Falls Nursery
2011 Charles Siegchrist, Barber Farm, Inc.
2010 Christopher Conant Claussens Florist & Greenhouse
2009 Amy Rose-White, Rocky Dale Gardens
2008 Paul Sokal and Louise Giovanella
2007 John and Patti Padua, Cobble Creek Nursery
2006 Thomas F. Wright, Homestead Landscaping
2005 Dan G. Nash, Nashs Treescape
2004 Leonard Perry, UVM
2003 Bill Countryman, Countryman Peony Farm
2002 Charlie Proutt, Horsfords Nursery
2001 Holly Weir & Bill Pollard, Rocky Dale Gardens
2000 Greg Williams
1998 Joan Hulbert, Smallwood Nursery
1997 William Horsford
1996 Dennis Bruckel, Grand Isle Nursery
1995 Richard Salter
1994 Elmer Brown, The E.C. Brown Nursery
1993 Norman & Dorothy Pellett
1992 Lewis & Nancy Hill
1991 Richard Stevens, Sr.
Environmental Awareness Award
2013 Sarah Salatino, Full Circle Garden
2012 Chris Conant, Claussens Florist & Greenhouse
2011 Sarah Holland, Rivers Bend Garden Design
2009 Charlie Proutt and Eileen Schilling, Horsford Gardens &
2008 Tom Stearns, High Mowing Organic Seeds
2007 Karl Hammer, Vermont Compost Company
2006 Anne Mueller, Arcana Gardens and Greenhouses
2004 Common Ground Student Run Educational Farm
2002 Paul Sachs, North Country Organics
2001 Paul Sokal, Addison Gardens
2000 Adam Sherman
1997 Will & Judy Stevens
1996 Don Avery, Cadys Falls Nursery
1995 SVCEC Horticulture Program
1994 Jim & Mary Musty, J. M. Landscaping
1993 Nancy Volatile Wood
1991 Andrea Morgante
NENA Young Nursery Professional of the Year Award
2014 Jason Koicuba, Cobble Creek Nursery
2013 Brian Vaughan, Vaughans Landscaping, Inc.
2012 Nathaniel Carr, Church Hill Landscapes, Inc.
2011 Claybrook Griffith Long Leaf Landscaping
2010 Shannon Lee, Cobble Creek Nursery
2009 Rebecca Lindenmeyr, Linden Landscaping & Design, Inc.
2008 R. Andrew Burtt, Old Nash Farm & Landscaping
2006 Chris Thompson, White River Valley Gardens &
2005 Mark Starrett, UVM
2002 Tim Parsons, Greenhaven Gardens & Nursery
2001 Charlie Plonski, Horsfords Gardens & Nursery/New England
Nursery Sales
2000 Peter Norris
1998 Scott Pfister, Vermont Department of Agriculture
1997 Stephen Tworig
1996 Bill Pedi, Northern Nurseries
1995 Thamasin Sullivan
1994 VJ Comai, South Forty
1993 Chris Schlegel
1992 Ralph Fitzgerald
1991 Pat Seibel
Retailer of the Year Award
2013 Tobi & Sally von Trapp, von Trapp Greenhouse
2012 Julie Rubaud, Red Wagon Plants
November 5-6, 2014
Northeast Greenhouse Conference
Mass Mutual Center
Springfield, MA
November 12, 204
Ecological Landscape Alliance Seasons
End Summit - Residential Restoration
8am-4pm - Crane Estate
Ipswich, MA
November 18-20, 2014
8th Annual Invasive Species Outreach
Cornell University
Ithaca, NY
November 19, 2014
Webinar: Landscaping at the Waters
Edge: An Ecological Approach; 1-2pm
December 5, 2014
Green Works Industry Awards Program
Deadline for Submissions
December 5, 2014
Webinar: Landscape Design -
Therapeutic Wellness Gardens; 1-2pm
December 8, 2014
Webinar: The Magical Appeal of Moss
Landscape Designs; 7:30-8:30pm
December 10, 2014
Webinar: Creating Outdoor Magic -
Designing Outdoor Play & Learning
Spaces - 7:30-8:30pm
January 27, 2015
Green Works Annual Winter Meeting &
Trade Show
UVM-Davis Center
Burlington, VT
February 4-5, 2015
New England Grows
Boston Convention & Exhibition
February 27, 28 and March 1, 2015
2015 Vermont Flower Show
Champlain Valley Expo
Industry Calendar
PO Box 92
North Ferrisburgh, VT 05473
visit us at
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