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Spring Issue 2018, Volume 44, Issue 1

VNLA Award Winners page 7

Green Mountain Habitat for Humanity Project page 8

Two VT Gardens
1 a Century Apart page 18

Ed Burke Marlys Eddy

Vermont Technical College BUDGET AND FINANCE
Rocky Dale Gardens COMMITTEE CHAIR
806 Rocky Dale Road PO Box 500
Randolph Center, VT 05061 Nate Carr - Church Hill Landscapes, Inc.
Bristol, VT 05443 802.425.5222
802.453.2782 802.728.1207
Ralph Fitz-Gerald Executive Board Members
Horsford Gardens & Nursery
Ashley Robinson Ashley Robinson Landscape Designer
Landscape Designer Charlotte, VT 05445
802-425-2811 802.922.1924
PO Box 28
Charlotte, VT 05445
802.922.1924 Gabriel Bushey - Crafted Landscapes, LLC Marie Limoge
Landscape Designer 802.233.8551
21 Densmore Drive #21
802-272-8744 COMMITTEE CHAIR
Nate Carr Ed Burke - Rocky Dale Gardens
Church Hill Landscapes, Inc. 802.453.2782
287 Church Hill Road Sarah Salatino
Charlotte, VT 05445 Full Circle Gardens MEMBERSHIP COMMITTEE CHAIR
802.425.5222 68 Brigham Hill Road Hannah Decker - Fairfax Perennial Farm Essex, VT 05452 802.849.2775
Sarah Salatino
Gabriel Bushey EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR 802.879.1919
Crafted Landscapes, LLC
176 South Maple Street Kristina MacKulin RESEARCH & AWARDS
Vergennes, VT 05491 VNLA/Green Works COMMITTEE CHAIR
802.233.8551 P.O. Box 92 Marlys Eddy N. Ferrisburgh, VT 05473 802.728.1207
Toll Free: 888.518.6484
Hannah Decker P: 802.425.5117; F: 802.425.5122 VERMONT CERTIFIED HORTICULTURIST
Fairfax Perennial Farm, Inc. COMMITTEE CHAIR
7 Blackberry Hill Road Nate Carr - Church Hill Landscapes, Inc.
Fairfax, VT 05454 802.425.5222

7, Volum
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PRESIDENT’S LETTER Ed Burke, Rocky Dale Gardens

Dear VNLA Members,

Happy Spring,
Hopefully by the time you are reading this the huge piles of snow
will have dissipated and daffodils will be blooming. It seems winter this issue
has a good grip on us which will only make spring that much more of
a relief and a joy. Board of Directors 2

I would like to welcome new board members: Ralph Fitz Gerald from The President’s Letter 3
Horsford Gardens & Nursery, Sarah Salatino from Full Circle
Gardens and Marie Limoge, Landscape Designer. Marie, Sarah and The Buzz 4
Ralph are all familiar names to us, helping with many VNLA events The VNLA/Green Works
over the years, including the Vermont Flower Show. We are excited to welcome their energy, Meeting Recap
creative thinking, expertise, and commitment to the VNLA board! VNLA 2018 Business
Roundtable Recap
At the same time, I’d like to thank VJ Comai and Carrie Chalmers whose board positions ended
this past February. They made outstanding contributions to the Association and will continue to VNLA Award Winners
be involved. It has been my pleasure to work with both Carrie and VJ and we are a better 2017/18
association because of their dedication and commitment. Calendar of Events

Green Mountain Habitat

Inside this edition of The Dirt you’ll find a recap of our winter meeting where Tom Rainer gave an
for Humanity Project Update
outstanding and inspiring keynote. You’ll also find out more about our upcoming Green
Mountain Habitat for Humanity project and upcoming twilights. The Vermont Flower Show Leonard’s Clippings 10
Committee has been working on the 2019 show the past few months. The theme for 2019 will be
“Wonder - A Garden Adventure for All Ages”! Look for more about the upcoming show in the The Lab 13
Summer Issue of The Dirt as well as future emails. Exhibitor registration will begin in August. Emerald Ash Borer in VT
Observations from
Our keynote for the summer meeting (mark your calendars for August 22, 2018) will be Dan
UVM Diagnostic Lab
Jaffe, propagator and stock bed grower at Garden in the Woods, New England Wildflower Society.
Dan spoke at New England Grows last December and I’m sure you’ll find him a very engaging and The Idea Factory 17
practical resource. Please see page 20 for a book review on his latest book Native Plants for New
NICH Release - The Power
England Gardens by fellow member Judith Irven.
of Plants

Look for more in the coming months as we apply for a USDA Specialty Crop Block Grant to Two Gardens a Century
launch a marketing/education campaign - Plant Something VT! The Plant Something program Apart
has been adopted nationwide by 22 states as as well as Maine, New Hampshire, New York, Book Reviews on Native
Massachusetts and Connecticut. We will know by the end of May if we are successful in this Plants for VT Gardens
grant application and hopefully we will have more to come about this marketing/education
initiative! Strictly Business 23
Attracting Talent in a
We are excited about the energy building at the VNLA and the positive direction the Association New Era
is heading, both with current programs and new initiatives. Increased member participation and
new avenues to engage will help our Association grow. There has never been a better time to The Plant Lounge 25
belong to the Association! If you come across someone who is not a member please invite them Make Room for Spring
to join the VNLA! Beauties!

Good luck with the season ahead!

Cover Photo: Amelanchiers

(A. canadensis) in Judith
Irven’s garden, Goshen, VT;
photo by Dick Conrad.
the low down on what’s up!

THE VNLA/Green Works 2018 Winter Meeting Recap

The Green Works, VNLA A HUGE thank you to UVM
Extension for helping us
Winter Meeting was held on
secure a USDA RMA grant to
February 15, 2018 at the UVM
fund speaker costs for this
Davis Center in Burlington,
VT. It was great to be back at
UVM. The parking was a bit
Next came a morning break
easier this time and the
giving everyone a chance to
weather cooperated this year.
visit with vendors as well as
We had 165 people attend and
catch up with one another.
20 vendors participate.
The VNLA/Green Works
Thanks to all of you who were
annual business meeting was
able to join us for the day! It is
held next. Beginning the
always such a pleasure to see
business meeting was the
everyone for a great day of
adoption by voting members
learning and conversations.
of bylaw changes that had
been previously warned to the
We were very pleased to have
membership. New 2017
Thomas Rainer of Phyto
members and VCHERs were
Studio as our keynote speaker.
recognized. The members
Thomas is a landscape
were next asked to vote on
architect, teacher and author
extending an Honorary
living in Arlington, VA and a
membership to past-
leading voice in ecological
president/board member
landscape design. He has
Layne Tharp. The vote was
designed landscapes for the
unanimous. Next the
U.S. Capitol grounds, the
Industry Awards, VNLA
Martin Luther King, Jr.
Awards, the NENA Award, and
Memorial, and The New York
student merit awards were
Botanical Garden, as well as
presented. Please see the
over 100 gardens from Maine
following articles in this issue
to Florida. He is a celebrated
recognizing the recipients of
public speaker who has
these awards.
garnered acclaim for his
passionate presentations to audiences across the U.S. and in
The Board of Directors recognized VJ Comai for his 8 years on
the board, 4 of which were spent as president. This is also VJ’s
second stint on the board, having served 7 years previously in
Thomas is the co-author of ‘Planting in a Post-Wild
the 1990’s. The board also recognized Carrie Chalmers for her 6
World’ (Timber Press). Thomas wowed everyone with his
years of service. We will miss them both and are very grateful
presentation of “Nature Hacks: Five Remarkably Effective
for their contributions and dedication to the VNLA these past
Strategies for a More Resilient, Beautiful, Ecologically
Abundant Landscape. His presentation took a look at five
different ecological principles landscape designers can use in
A slate of candidates for the board of directors was presented
creating more functional, lower input plantings with a goal of
and elected for two year terms as follows: Ed Burke, Rocky Dale
more resilient and biodiverse landscapes.
Gardens, as president, Ashley Robinson, Landscape Designer as

vice-president, and Nate Carr, interesting conversations on
Church Hill Landscapes, Inc., as shared experiences. A short
secretary/treasurer. The recap article on the Roundtable
following were elected to two- can be found below.
year terms as board of directors:
Hannah Decker, Fairfax Perennial The last presentation of the day
Farms, and Ralph FitzGerald, was “Native Plants, a Plant
Horsford Gardens and Nursery. Grower’s Perspective” with Peter
The following were elected to van Berkum of van Berkum
one-year vacancies on the board Nursery, Deerfield, NH. Peter
of directors: Marie Limoge, spoke about the challenges of
Landscape Designer, and Sarah growing and marketing native
Salatino, Full Circle Gardens. plants as “nativars”. This
continues to be a dominate topic
After lunch, the VNLA/Green of conversation and on-going
Works Industry Award winners debate on the ecological value of
presented their winning projects via a slideshow presentation. planting native plants.
Next came a short break visiting vendors and then afternoon
sessions. Ann Hazelrigg of the UVM Diagnosic Lab presented We want to congratulate Paul Wieczoreck, the winner of the
“Pests & Diseases – What to Know for 2018” which included annual ID contest two years running now. With April upon us
tips on how to identify what crosses your path in the field. February seems but a distant memory but it is always good to
look back and reflect on a this particular day of conversation,
Back by popular demand was the two-part “Getting Down to good food, laughs, new and interesting ideas, and sharing of
Business – A Roundtable Discussion” facilitated by board information. These are the makings of a wonderful start to the
members Ashley Robinson, Hannah Decker and Sarah Salatino. 2018 planting/growing season!
Over 30 people sat down with fellow colleagues to have

THE VNLA/Green Works 2018 Business Roundtable Recap

by Ashley Robinson
This year’s “Getting Down to Business Roundtable Discussion grow professionally and personally, here’s to continued success
and let’s keep the conversation going! Here is a brief recap of
held at our Winter Meeting
topics we discussed:
in February, proved another
big success! We had the •Charging for design and/or
largest group yet, with 23
consultations - How do I
participants and 3
how do I set a fair price?
facilitators. Participants •How do I find employees? 
broke into 3 groups:
Keep employees?
landscapers & designers in
two groups, and nursery •Physical work seems a
growers/professionals in
hard sell, how do I find the
another. After separate
RIGHT kind of help?
discussions, the whole
group reconvened to share
Phil Kibler shared a good
their collective knowledge.
As entrepreneurs, we can feel alone in our business struggles.
Too often it’s easy to forget some of the best tools we have to
“Physical work is a hard sell because most don't realize that
succeed are each other. So, thanks to everyone for
attaining a long term work ethic in manual labor is very much
participating, encouraging and engaging in conversation.
just as difficult to attain as a college degree. You can usually
Meeting new people is one of the best ways to
tell the difference between someone with a "degree" in manual

labor, and someone who does not by the guy that sticks around
for more than one season or even 1 week.

Manual labor is under-valued and presumed that anyone can

do, thus considered to be worth no more than a minimal wage.
It takes time and persistence to gain the stamina needed to
perform physical work before it can become second nature.
Sure, anyone can "do" manual labor, but few can do it with a
cool head, diligence, efficiency, and collective mind.  If it were
easy or wasn't time consuming, 99% of people wouldn't hire
someone else to do it. 

It can be a million dollar decision between hiring someone

with or without what I would firmly call a "degree" in manual
labor, i.e. 2-4 years of hard labor. 

Physical work wouldn't be so much of a hard sell if it were

valued more by the employer, granted it will still be a hard
sell, as it is difficult to find someone that can move 2 yards of
topsoil 50’ in under an hour anymore, but that's why it's a
million dollar decision.” 

Feel free to contact Phil at to

continue this conversation!

The group conversations continued in each group with the

below listed topics/questions:

• Finding specialty contractors - How do I know who to

recommend for green roof design, arborists, pond/water
features? Growers chimed in on the issues surrounding their business
• Growers are challenged by requests from clients for while landscapers shared their challenges in hopes of reaching
plants simply NOT available and making substitutions a continued successful way forward.  Keep the questions and
work. comments coming.
• Marketing - Houzz is it worth it?  Email blasts,
newsletters, nursery updates, what to plant now?   The VNLA membership is a great place to begin in searching for
• What about plugs?  Is there a good source for them?  Is information, referrals and support.  We're a growing Association
it practical?  and a resource, so don't forget to reach out to members! 
Thanks everyone, until next time!

Participate in the
2018 Industry Awards Program.
Start Planning Now!

Get Certified in 2018!

Don’t delay and order
your study manual today!

The VNLA/Green Works Awards Presentation - 2017/18
Retailer of the Year Award - 2017
The presentation of the VNLA/Green Works awards occurred Eileen Schilling & Charlie Proutt
at the Winter Meeting on February 15, 2018. We are pleased to
Horsford Garden’s & Nursery - Charlotte, VT
recognize those individuals below and extend our
congratulations. Winners received their awards in the order
This award is presented annually to a retail garden
listed below.
center or greenhouse operation that stands apart for their
excellence in any or all of the following categories:
Honorary Member:
customer service, quality of plant material, knowledge of
staff, creativity and innovations in marketing and
This distinction was bestowed
presentation of retail space, and overall customer experience
upon Layne Tharp after a
and satisfaction. Photo unavailable.
unanimous vote by members in
recognition of Layne’s work and
Allen B. Crane Horticultural Employee
dedication to the VNLA during
Acknowledgement Award - 2017
her time as a board member (4
Amy Olmsted
years) and as president (3 years).
Rocky Dale Gardens -
Since her time on the board,
Bristol, VT
Layne has continued to be an
avid supporter and participant in
This award is presented
our Association.
annually and is sponsored
by member Claussen’s
NENA Young Nursery Professional of the Year Award - 2018
Florist & Greenhouse in
Ashley Robinson, Landscape Designer
honor of Allen B. Crane,
Charlotte, VT
head grower there for over
42 years. Allen was “a
This is an annual award
great friend, wonderful
established by the New England
colleague and an
Nursery Association. Its purpose
incredible grower”. This award recognizes employees that
is to reward, to honor and to
make a difference in the horticultural industry. The winner
encourage participation,
receives a cash prize of $275. Nominees must meet the
achievement and growth by an
following criteria: be employed by a member business for a
individual who is involved in a
minimum of 5 years and be employed in the horticultural
related horticultural industry
industry. Nominees should be exemplary leaders and display
and has not reached the age of
an ability to grow and excel in the workplace and beyond.
40 years, who has shown
involvement in his or her state
and/or regional nurserymen’s
Horticultural Achievement Award - 2017
association, has contributed to the growth and success of
Joan Lynch
their company of employment and has portrayed an image to
The Inner Garden
the public of what our products and services can do for them.
Cornwall, VT
Environmental Awareness Award - 2017
This award is given to
Nate Carr
individuals connected to
Church Hill Landscapes, Inc.
the horticultural industry in
Charlotte, VT
Vermont, who are over 40
years of age and whose
This award is given in recognition of
accomplishments have
an individual that has implemented
advanced our industry
an environmentally sound practice
educationally, by plant
that contributes to the protection of
development or growing,
our environment.
through literature, or
through outstanding

personal effort. This award is the most prestigious and
distinguished that can be received from The Vermont Nursery
and Landscape Association/Green Works.

The $500 UVM Student

Merit Award for 2017
was presented to Kaly
Gonski of Milford, CT.
Kaly is a a junior in Plant
& Soil Science. Kaly has
her own landscaping
company in Milford, CT
and has also worked the GET OUT OF THE
past two summers at the CLASSROOM AND INTO
Great River Golf Course
in Milford, CT. Kaly
served as VP of Horticulture Club in 2016/17 and is currently
the President. Kaly will continue to serve as the President of
the Horticulture Club in 2018/19. The club has almost 2,000 Earn your associate degree in Landscape
students on their listerv!  Kaly is also on the UVM Women's Design & Sustainable Horticulture.
Club Hockey team and has been for two years.
The $500 VTC Student Merit Award for 2017 was presented
or contact admissions at (800) 442-8821.
to Ben Zaccara (accepted by Marly Eddy on his behalf). Ben is a
first year student in the Landscape Design and Sustainable
Horticulture program. He was nominated by the program
faculty because of his excellent academic performance as well
Small College. Big Outcomes.
as his sincere career aspirations in the green industry.
Additionally, Ben pursues learning opportunities outside of the
classroom such as the DEC Natural Shoreland Erosion Control
certification he attended this fall.  He is from New Milford, CT
Three Things to know about Van Berkum Nursery
and enjoys playing the guitar and exercising. He hopes to earn 1) We are passionate about what we grow, from New England
a degree in Landscape Architecture, gain industry experience, Woodlanders to Wicked Ruggeds.
2) We specialize in healthy NH grown perennials, personal service,
and eventually open a design-build firm with his brother.
and extensive plant knowledge.
3) We have friends in low places. (ribbit).
Industry Awards Winners 2017

This program is in its ninth year. Award trophies were

presented at the 2018 Winter Meeting along with their winning
projects. You can also view winning projects on our website - as well as in The Dirt’s Winter
Issue, 2017/18. Winning projects were highlighted on Across
the Fence, WCAX, Channel 3 in February, 2018 and in the April
18, 2018 Seven Days Newspaper as a featured insert.

Van Berkum Nursery • 4 James Road Deerfield, NH 03037

(603) 463-7663 Fax 7326 •
Anna Johansen, Chris diStefano, Charlie Proutt, Josh Cohen, Linda
Bailey, and Edwin Bruijn. Not present: Elizabeth Proutt, Caroline
Dudek and Landon Roberts. 8
April 24, 2018 July 30 - August 3, 2018 November 7 - 8, 2018
VNLA/Green Works Perennial Plant Symposium Northeast Greenhouse
Season Kick Off/Tuesday Twilight Raleigh, NC Conference and Expo
Brainstorm/Collaboration Session Boxborough Regency Hotel
with Colleagues - 5:30-7:30 pm Boxborugh, MA
August 22, 2018
UVM Horticulture Research Farm
VNLA/Green Works Summer
Green Mountain Drive Meeting & Trade Show
S. Burlington, VT 05403 January 9-11, 2019
Shelburne Farms Coach Barn
July 15, 2018 Shelburne, VT
Baltimore Convention Center
Flynn Garden Tour - 22nd Annual August 28-29, 2018 Baltimore, MD
Gardens located in Charlotte Griffin Greenhouse Grower &
Tickets go on sale June 4, 2018 Retailer Expo DCU Center, Worcester, MA March 1-3, 2019 Vermont Flower Show
July 17, 2018
October 4, 2018 Champlain Valley Expo
VNLA/Green Works Tuesday Twilight
Invasive Plant Symposium Essex Junction, VT
5:30 - 7:30 pm
UCONN Student Union
Tour at Marijke’s Perennial Gardens Plus
Storrs, CT
Starksboro, VT

The Green Mountain Habitat for Humanity Project - Update

At the VNLA March Board The VPOC met with the GMHHP
project manager, Dick Shasteen,
Meeting, the board established
gathered information about the
the Volunteer Project/Outreach
homeowners and toured one of
Committee (VPOC). The intent is
the units. Armed with site plans,
to complete a volunteer project
the design team will begin work
every other year (the off years of
on the landscape plan in the
the Vermont Flower Show). The
coming weeks. The next VPOC
first project to fall under the
meeting will be held mid-April. If
VPOC is the Green Mountain
you are not already signed up,
Habitat for Humanity Project
would like to join the committee,
(GMHHP), which was announced
or have questions, please contact:
in the Winter issue of The Dirt as well as a short presentation
Ashley Robinson, 802.922.1924 or
about the project at the Winter Meeting and Trade Show on
February 15, 2018. We received immediate favorable feedback and
We will be looking for donations for materials such as stone, soil,
participation from our membership! We foresee great potential for
plants, lumber, tools, etc. as well as help with the planting and
future outreach projects and look forward to engaging with
implementation of this project. We will be sending out a list for
community members around the state.
donations as well as the date of the planting with hopes of
completing this project by late summer. If anyone has materials to
Meanwhile, we’re happy to acknowledge that efforts are already
donate please contact Ashley Robinson.
underway for GMHHP at 57 Park St in Essex Junction. The first
committee meeting was held Tuesday March 20, 2018 with a visit
Finally, the VNLA/VPOC is in discussion with GMHH on press
to the site and discussion on various design elements.
releases and the best ways to acknowledge the Association and
everyone involved so we can highlight the great work we do as
In attendance were Dr. Mark Starrett, Lisa Hoare, Marie Limoge,
an Association. Stay tuned for more from the Habitat
Pat from The Grass Gauchos, Gabe Bushey and Ashley Robinson,
VPOC Committee Chair.
by Dr. Leonard Perry, UVM Horticulture Professor Emeritus

Will your new competition in landscaping be Amazon? I found with local schools to establish gardens, perhaps it’s time to now work
with local businesses?
this recent posting in the Ball Publishing Green Talks which I
include here in case you missed this. (This is a good free email Speaking of schools, it probably seems obvious to us but now research
newsletter with environmental focus if you want to keep up more in shows that “when plants are around, students are just smarter and pay
this area. If the author’s name Jennifer Duffield White sounds more attention.” In classrooms with plants, “test scores increase by 10
familiar, she is the sister of VNLA member percent, children are 7 percent happier,
Annie White.) and symptoms of ADD are reduced.” You
“What will Amazon do next? According to can learn more on this from the National
the patent office, they’re looking to match Initiative for Consumer Horticulture
their customers' gardens with the products ( a consortium
they might most need. Amazon of industry leaders promoting the benefits
recently received a patent for a “garden and value of horticulture. Their goal is to
service” that relies on algorithms and get 90 percent of U.S. households
image recognition software to make gardening by 2025.
recommendations. In UVM News from the U, we lost two
faculty this past winter that some of you
How will it work? It seems that you’d take may have interacted with over the years,
a picture of the plants in your yard and the heard speak, or had for courses if you
service would identify the plants, attended UVM.
recommend recipes, related gardening
items to order, and maybe some groceries. Dr. Robert L. (Bob) Parsons passed away on
But it will also analyze the growing area— Friday, February 16, 2018 at UVMMC in
and recommend plants that will do well Burlington. Dr. Parsons earned his Ph.D.,
under those conditions. All of which you in Agricultural Economics from Virginia
would purchase online (obviously, from Tech in 1995 and has been at the
Amazon). University of Vermont since 2000, where
he rose through the ranks, achieving full
To quote from the patent application and professor status in 2010.
their example: “The garden service may
also determine from the images that a  “Dr. Parsons was an Agricultural Economics
large brick pizza oven structure may shade Professor in the Department of Community
the south-end of the backyard. As such, the Development and Applied Economics and
garden service may recommend a wild ginger plant, also available at Extension in the College of Agriculture and
the electronic marketplace, as a low-shade plant that can be grown in Life Sciences.  He delivered education to thousands, including members of
the south-end of the backyard.” the farm community, both organic and conventional dairy farmers, family
farms in generational transition, and loved working with students to
Now, there’s no saying that this patent will turn into an actual develop farm business plans and study agricultural policy and ethics.  Dr.
Amazon service. They actually filed for the patent in 2014 and it was Parsons authored or coauthored more than 200 scholarly and extension
only approved in October 2017.  But we do know the company is publications, and was P.I. or co-P.I. on more than 75 grants totally more
thinking hard about food (after their recent purchase of Whole Foods) than $11 million. His research activities focused on dairy farm profitability
and how to monetize that market. And the garden market may be and economics of nutrient management practices. Bob dedicated time in
part of the equation.” Albania, Zambia, Malawi, South Africa and Kenya with Land O'Lakes
providing project analysis and production and financial training to
So far I haven’t been very impressed with plant recognition farmers and extension specialists.  In 2013, Dr. Parsons was awarded the
software and programs—perhaps I just haven’t found the right one John Finley Memorial Award for his outstanding contributions to Vermont
yet. Of three I’ve tried, all have come up with totally wrong plants. agriculture.” (UVM CALS email)
Let me know if you’ve found one that works well.
Some of you may have known Bertie Boyce in PSS, or had a course from
I recently came across an idea ( 10/16/17 ) him even. This tribute was penned by Terry Bradshaw in our department
which seems a win-win for both our industry and non-horticulture and should be an interesting read even if you never heard of Bertie.
businesses. “Successful corporate enterprise has begun to
incorporate current gardening trends with innovative urban farming "Taking a moment to remember a real UVM horticultural and teaching
techniques to the mutual benefit of employee well-being and hero and old mentor of mine, Dr. Bertie Boyce who passed away yesterday
bottom-line production… Studies confirm that employees who (Jan. 23). While we might seem quite different at first glance, Bertie's
interact directly with live plants report lower stress levels and shadow looms over mine in many ways. Himself a multi-generation (six vs
exhibit higher mental acuity. “ Just as many members have worked my seven) Vermonter raised on a family farm in eastern Vermont
(Newbury vs Chelsea). Bertie was the second manager of the UVM Hort

Farm beginning in 1958, I was (am) the seventh, beginning in 2005. I tale often, and think of it when, as a middle-aged, ponytailed, less
am presently teaching PSS 221, Sustainable Orchard Management, a scruffy professor, I assure the next generation student that my orchard
class I took with Bertie 22 years ago and I still use his notes for. Like class "won't be a permaculture design course." RIP Bertie Boyce. They
Bertie, I am conducting apple rootstock and grape cultivar trials, on don't make many like you any more, and I hope to quietly carry on a
literally the same soil that he did. little of your legacy."
In other UVM Plant and Soil Science news:
Professors tend to do one of two things when they retire: either stick
around forever as an emeritus or leave completely. Bertie largely did the
• Several PSS faculty were named as new “affiliates” of the Gund
latter after retiring in 1998, passing the torch on to those who came
Institute for Environment at UVM. This Institute “brings
after him. He still came by one day every fall to pick apples, and was,
scholars and leaders together to accelerate research, uncover
even in his late 70's always a faster picker than a work study student
solutions and tackle the world's most pressing environmental
and often faster than me. We'd talk department politics and the state of
the industry and catch up a bit. He didn't really agree with the way
• New faculty member and biologist Eric Bishop von Wettberg has
things were moving at UVM and elsewhere, and I respect and share
been featured on VPR, and in Newsweek and the New York Times.
some of his point of view and inform my own work with its sensible
His global research is looking to wild strains of chickpeas to solve
farmer's perspective. I don't think I ever expressed my gratitude and
issues such as from disease and weak vigor. Although we mainly
indebtedness to him.
know this crop from garbanzo beans and hummus, one in five
people in the world use this as a primary source of protein.
I knew a few years ago that his health was declining when I didn't get
• Ann Hazelrigg and Sid Bosworth are collaborating with other
the call for him to pick his annual load of Macs and Cortlands. I did
scientists from Maine and New Hampshire on a weed survey, and
send some to him for a couple of years, and just yesterday, in his final
have completed the first comprehensive assessment of weeds
moments and not having seen him in a number of years, I was
found on organic vegetable farms in Northern New England. 
discussing him with colleagues, not knowing that it was his last day.
• Ann Hazelrigg, whom many of you know from UVM Extension
Many at the University don't have any clue of his legacy- he wasn't a
and who spoke at the annual meeting, will be taking over
natural promoter and, as I said, preferred to leave quietly.
representation from UVM Extension on the planning committee
for the Northeast Greenhouse Conference (which is coming up
Once, as a young, ponytailed, scruffy sophomore, I approached Bertie
this Nov. 7-8 in Boxborough, MA). Sarah Salatino of Full Circle
after class to get an override into his vegetable production course since I
Gardens continues to represent your association for this event.
didn't yet have all the prerequisites. He looked me up and down and
said, in a dry eastern Vermont accent, "let me assure you, Mr.
Bradshaw, that this will not be an organic gardening class." I tell that

Cobble Creek Nursery, LLC

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in quality field grown B&B nursery
stock, having sold our container growing
operation. We would like to take this
opportunity to thank Sally, Jason and Sonya
for their years of loyalty and service and
to wish them well in their new endeavors!
John, Patti and Todd will continue to
offer the same high quality plants and
exceptional customer service you have
come to expect from Cobble Creek.

John Padua
991 Tyler Bridge Road, Bristol, VT 05443
phone/fax: 802-453-3889 / e-mail:




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putting it under the lens . . .

Emerald Ash Borer in Vermont

by Emilie Inoue, VT State Pest Coordinator
State and federal officials have been of the pest. Vermont is the 32nd state in
the United States to report the pest and
looking for Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) in
management recommendations as well as
Vermont for over a decade. Surveillance
quarantine decisions will be made public
strategies for the pest have included
after the results of the delineation survey
thousands of ‘purple prism traps’,
are analyzed.
monitoring the nests of ground wasps
known to collect EAB, girdling and Although the detection of EAB in
peeling trap-trees and following up on Vermont comes as no surprise to most
reports made by concerned members of people familiar with the pest, its
the public. The pest was able to elude confirmed presence is depressing and
intensive and prolonged detection efforts sobering. 5% of Vermont’s forests are
until late February, 2018. made up of ash and it is highly likely that
almost 100% of the state’s ash population
An observant and conscientious private
will die because of Emerald Ash Borer.
consulting forester noticed the tell-tale
Researchers have been searching for
signs of EAB in the town of Orange on
effective options to combat Emerald Ash
February 21st. The forester took
Borer populations and have been working
photographs and reported his concerns
to identify genetic traits in the few ash
through, a multi-
trees that have exhibited some tolerance
agency collaborative website that
to the pest. Collectively working to slow the spread of EAB is,
provides information on invasive species and offers visitors an
without a doubt, the best hope we have to buy time as research
online reporting function. Reports made through the online
about the insect continues and control measures developed.
form are sent to a designated response team comprised of
People can take action to limit the distribution of EAB by not
representatives from the Vermont Agency of Agriculture,
moving potentially infested ash material, such as firewood, out
Vermont Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation and the
of areas that have an EAB population. Landowners and nature
University of Vermont Extension’s Urban and Community
lovers can keep a look out for signs of EAB and report
Forestry program. State officials visited the Orange county site
suspicious trees at
within 24 hours of being reported. Several samples of larvae
were collected and sent to a USDA-Animal Plant and Health There are several positive take home messages from this
Inspection Service national taxonomist for confirmation. detection that must be highlighted and not forgotten. There are
Following the official confirmation from the federal many Vermonters that care deeply about the state’s natural
government, a delineation survey to determine the scope of resources and consequently are well informed about invasive
infestation was launched and is currently being implemented. species such as emerald ash borer. It was one such individual
At the time of writing this article, EAB has been confirmed in who alerted the right people when he saw something that
three Vermont counties; Orange County, Caledonia County and concerned him. This forester’s report has made it possible for
Washington County. us to try to slow the spread of the pest that we otherwise would
not have been able be able to do. Another encouraging aspect
The Emerald Ash Borer is a small beetle that is native to
to this detection is that the strategy developed to allow
northeastern Asia. In north America the insect was first
members of the public to alert the proper state agencies about
identified in Detroit, MI in 2002. It is thought that EAB
the presence of an invasive species worked. The uploaded
‘hitchhiked’ across the world via solid wood packing materials
report from the forester made it to the response team
such as pallets and shipping crates. Since its arrival this pest
seamlessly and a 24 hour turn around time is about as fast as
has been responsible for the death of tens of millions of ash
anyone could hope for. Emerald Ash Borer is here and it’s here
trees across north America and Canada and continues to
to stay. Let’s work together to limit the human aided spread of
spread. Unfortunately, eradication of this pest is not an option
this insect in Vermont and let’s hope for a breakthrough in
and management strategies have focused on slowing the spread
research before it’s too late.

Observations from the UVM Plant Diagnostic Lab
by Ann Hazelrigg, Phd.
Last summer was poised to be a great berry year. Home
gardeners and commercial growers saw good bloom, fruit set
and steady ripening yet many ripe blueberries and raspberries
either shriveled on the plant or collapsed quickly after picking.

This was the work of the destructive pest Spotted-wing

Drosophila (SWD), Drosophila suzukii. This small fruit fly (a
few millimeters long) leap-frogged its way across the county
after being introduced to California in 2008. It was found in
Michigan in 2010, successfully overwintering there. The pest
showed up in New England in 2011, blowing in on storm fronts
from Hurricane Irene. Since then the fly has successfully
overwintered in the region and has become a recurring
destructive pest. Unlike the common fruit fly, who lays eggs in
rotted fruit, Spotted-wing Drosophila has a toothed ovipositor
that cuts into to intact healthy ripening fruit and lays eggs that
quickly hatch into white maggots or larvae. These cuts in the
fruit along with the feeding of the larvae, expose the fruit to
secondary pathogens that quickly rot the fruit.

Top: Spotted-wing Drosophila larva on cherry fruit; note

breathing holes E. Beers, July 2010 WSU.
Above: Adult male Spotted-wing Drosophila, Drosophilia suzukii. Below: SWD emerging from fall raspberries left out after
Photograph by Martin Hauser, California Department of Food and picking. Photo by Griffin Dill, UMaine.
Agriculture. Below: Ovipositor of an adult female Spotted-wing
Srosophila. Photograph by Martin Hauser, California Department The adult SWD lives for about two weeks and can lay up to 100
of Food and Agriculture. eggs. The infested fruit are not detected at first, but within a
few days the larvae are visible in the rotting fruit. The larvae
feed for as little as 7-10 days (up to 25 days or longer if the
weather is cool), drop to the soil to pupate and then turn into
adults, repeating the cycle. There can be many overlapping
cycles over the course of the summer. This past summer, the fly
started early and populations built up quickly. The fly attacks
any ripening soft fruit; blueberries, blackberries, raspberries,
cherries and grapes are the most common. The fly can also
attack soft fruits of landscape plants like honeysuckle and
buckthorn, contributing to the buildup of the invasive pest.

Whole Farm Policy
Whole Farm Policy
The Whole-Farm Revenue Protection program provides a risk management safety net for all
The most successful SWD management requires multiple development
The Whole-Farm
on theoffarmpest
Revenue under
farm under
Protection program policy.
one insurance
one insurance
provides achemistries
get WFRP withof only
net one
only for all
commodity with commodities. Thispolicy.
insurance plancanisget WFRPfor
tailored with
any farmonewith
tactics. Using good sanitation by picking the berries on a daily pesticide
up families
to $8.5 million need
or withinmultiple
insured to be
revenue, rotated.
This farms
including Conventional
withplan is tailored
specialty forcommercial
or organicany farm with
up to crops
(both $8.5 million in insured
and livestock), orrevenue, includingtofarms
those marketing local,with specialty
regional, or organicpreserved,
farm-identity commodities
basis will limit populations. Cleaning up drops or old berries growers
(both crops
specialty, have
or and
direct several
markets, or pesticide
wholesalemarketing options
or retail.toThis
local, that
program can becertified
allows rotated
specialty, or
producers to direct markets,
use organic wholesale or retail. This program also allows certified organic
remaining on the stem is also important. After collecting these offer effective
producers control.
to use organic prices. However, organic commercial growers

drops be sure to destroy the fruit. Composting the fruit or have a much
Noninsured CropmoreDisaster limited
Assistance arsenal
Programand (NAP) of the two effective
Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program (NAP)
burying (researchers have found larvae can survive after being organic pesticides,
This is a disaster one
assistance program works much
that is administered better
by the Farm
This is a disaster assistance program that is administered by the Farm than
Service Agency
(FSA) so
and it provides financial assistance to producers of non-insurable crops to protect against
buried 18 inches deep) is not a good option. Chill berries as you
and getdisasters
natural one week
provides financial ofincontrol
lower yieldsfollowed
that result
to producers of byNAPa week
or crop losses.
provides ofdisaster
to less relief
natural disasters that result in lower yields or crop losses. NAP provides disaster relief
coverage based on the amount of loss that exceeds 50 percent of expected production.
soon they are picked to slow or stop the development of eggs or control.
coverage based on the amount of loss that exceeds 50 percent of expected production.

larvae even though eating the berries with eggs or larvae are Provisions
Provisions for
for beginning
beginning farmers,
farmers, traditionally underserved farmers,
traditionally underserved farmers, and
farmers with
with limited
limited resources
safe to eat. A good control option for home gardeners with Eligible
Eligible beginning
beginning farmers,
farmers, traditionally
traditionally underserved and those
those with
with limited
limited resources
resources can
small plantings is to exclude the pest by using special netting now
receive increased
increased assistance
assistance when
when they
underserved and
they participate in USDA
participate in USDA crop
crop insurance
insurance programs.
These new
new provisions
provisions exempt
exempt qualified
qualified farmers
farmers from paying the
from paying the administrative
administrative fee
fee for
for crop
applied before ripening. The netting must have very small insurance
insurance policies.
policies. In
In certain
certain instances,
instances, itit provides
provides them the ability
them the ability to
to use
use the
the production
history of
of farming
farming operations
operations which
inCrop they
they were
were previously
which Insurance involvedfor
previously involved with the
with the decision
openings (about 1 mm) and must be sealed at the base of the making
making oror physical
physical activities.
activities. It
It also
also increases
increases the
the premium subsidy rates
premium subsidy rates for
for beginning
Vermont Nursery Growers
bushes by sand bags or soil. Most of the ProTek netting is
appropriate for large plantings, but Dubois Agrinovation in Nursery crop insurance is available inImportant Dates
all counties for
Important which a premium rate is provided in the
actuarial documents to all persons operating nurseries that meet certain criteria. Insurance coverage
Canada will sell smaller sizes for home garden situations. Their Sales
Sales Closing/Cancellation…....May
Closing/Cancellation…....May 11 Insurance
Insurance period
period begins…….June
applies, by practice (field-grown or container), to all of your nursery plants in a county and 11

contact information can be found here: http:// for which you have a share;
are on the EPLPPS; Where
Where toto get
get more information
more information Many commercial growers monitor for the are grown in a nursery that receives at least 40 percent of its gross income from the wholesale
UVM Crop
marketing Insurance
of nursery Education:
plants; Jake
UVM Crop Insurance Education: Jake Jacobs email:Jacobs
insect using various baits but I think it is safe to say once meet all the requirements for insurability; and
Risk inManagement
an appropriateAgency:
Management medium.
berries start to ripen, you will probably have damage, especially are grown
Crop Insurance Agents must be licensed by the USDA to sell crop insurance in
Crop Insurance in any
if you saw the damage last year. Insecticides (organic or Nursery
state. plants
Here may
isis the
the notagent
RMA be insured
locaterif link
they:to find an agent in Vermont:
conventional) can be used to manage the pest and must be
Are grown in containers containing two or more different genera, species, subspecies, varieties,
or cultivars;
Farm Service
Service Agency:
applied as the berries approach ripening. To limit the USDA
Are grown and sold with the root system attached;
This Are grown
material isis fundedas stock
funded in plants;with
in partnership
partnership orUSDA, Risk Management Agency, under award number RM17RMETS524005.
with RM17RMETS524005. Any Any
reference to commercial
commercial products,
products, trade
trade names, or brand names is for information only, and no endorsement
endorsement or or approval
approval isis
Are togrown solely for harvest of buds, flowers, or greenery.
intended. Issued
Issued in in furtherance
furtherance ofof Cooperative
Cooperative Extension work, Acts of May 8 and June 30, 1914, in cooperation
cooperation with
with the
the United
States producing
Department of edible fruits
of Agriculture.
Agriculture. and nuts
University can be
of Vermont insured
Extension, if the plants
Burlington, areUniversity
Vermont. available for sale.
of Vermont Harvesting
Extension, and U.S.
and U.S.
the edible fruit or nuts does not affect insurability.
Department of
of Agriculture,
Agriculture, cooperating,
cooperating, offer education and employment to everyone without regard to race,
race, color,
color, national
origin, gender,
gender, religion,
religion, age,
age, disability,
disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, and marital or familial status.
Your nursery must be inspected and approved as acceptable before insurance coverage can begin.

Causes of Loss
You are protected against the following:
Adverse weather conditions, including wind, hurricane and freeze. If cold protection is required
by the EPLPPS, adequate and operational cold protection measures must be in place;
Failure of irrigation water supply, if due to an insurable cause of loss, such as drought;
Fire, provided weeds and undergrowth are controlled; and

N ort
Rehabilitation Endorsement
This is an addition to the basic policy and provides reimbursement for your expenditures on labor
and material for pruning and setup (righting, propping, and staking) of field-grown plants that are

damaged by an insured cause of loss and have a reasonable expectation or recovery. The Rehabilita-

urseriestion Endorsement is not available with the catastrophic coverage level.

A Division of The Robert Baker Companies

Wholesale Horticultural Distribution Centers

!"Quality Plant Material !"Complete Selection of Hardgoods !"Stone Products & Stone Display
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2234 N Hartland Rd., White River Jct., VT Phone: (802) 295-2117 Fax: (802) 295-4889
Member of VAPH
VNLA www.nor thernnur Manager: Mike Trombly Sales: Dana Spaulding

Please call for
a copy of our
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472 Marshall Avenue, Williston, Vermont

Spring/Summer Wholesale Hours:

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Phone: 802-658-2433 • Fax: 802-860-2936

tips & trends, food for thought…

NICH Release - March, 2018

The Power of Plants: Enriching Lives, Creating Jobs, Building Wealth, Saving Money

Horticulture positively It’s the first of a number

affects people’s lives where
of infographics to
they live, work, shop and
showcase the power of
play, according to a new
plants to improve life.
report from the National
The infographic series is
Initiative for Consumer
available to companies,
Horticulture (NICH).
institutions and
individuals for use in
The benefits of consumer
outreach to horticulture
horticulture are spotlighted
industry and non-industry
in “#PlantsDoThat,
Horticulture: The Art,
Science, & Business of
“We envision the
Plants.” The infographic
infographics as a tool
illustrates how consumer
showcasing the power of
horticulture contributes
consumer horticulture for
$196 billion to the U.S.
the purpose of building
economy and creates more
support for more plants in
than 2 million jobs.
our personal and public
spaces,” says Debbie Hamrick, NICH Economic Committee
“The story doesn’t just stop at direct economic impact,” said
Casey Sclar, NICH Chair. “Consumer and society engagement
through plants permeates all aspects of our lives, from
For instance, Hamrick says the infographic could be used by a
providing the aesthetic backdrop to directly enriching our
landscaper speaking before a City Council about a new or
health and well-being.”
renovated development, or by nurserymen on Capitol Hill
making the case for research, or an environmental engineer
According to the NICH report, plants benefit society in many
arguing for using vegetated plant systems instead of or in
conjunction with gray infrastructure.
• Plants in the workplace reduce employee sick time by
The National Initiative for Consumer Horticulture (NICH) is a
• Well-landscaped homes are more valuable; since
consortium of industry leaders who are promoting the benefits
homes represent 25% of personal wealth, outdoor
and value of horticulture. NICH brings together academia,
plants pack a powerful personal finance punch
government, industry, and nonprofits to cultivate the growth
American’s are growing more of their own food—25%
and development of a healthy world through landscapes,
of all Americans grow berries, veggies or fruit trees
gardens and plants – indoors and out.
• Shaded roadways save 60% of repaving costs
• America’s public gardens generate $2.3 billion in
The Mission of NICH is to grow a healthy world through
tourism spending
plants, gardens, and landscapes. To learn more about NICH
The infographic, developed by the NICH Economic Committee,
uses data gathered by Dr. Charlie Hall, the Ellison Endowed
This article originally appeared on PRWEB, authored by Susan
Chair in International Floriculture at Texas A&M University.
McCoy of Garden Media Group.

Two Gardens a Century Apart
by Judith Irven
Manchester (Vermont) is more than Continue on around behind the
mansion to the long rear terrace,
just a big shopping experience. It is also
and you will be facing Hoyt
the home of two splendid public
garden, an amazing creation that
is the ultimate in formality.
These two gardens, just four miles
The Lincoln’s daughter, Jesse,
apart, were created exactly one hundred
designed this garden as a birthday
years apart. And, as such, they provide
gift for her mother, Mary. Using
the attentive visitor a quick lesson in
the sweeping flat space behind
how garden fashions have evolved over
the house, she styled the garden
the past century.
after a French parterre to
The first, created in 1907, graces the resemble a stained-glass cathedral
splendid manor house of Hildene, window. As she looked down from
private summer home of Robert Todd her bedroom in the center of the
Lincoln (son of President Lincoln) and house, Mary could absorb its
his wife Mary.  entire panorama in a single
Now Hildene is visited by thousands of
people every year, many coming And, even when viewed from the
specifically to enjoy the huge formal ground-level terrace, you will be
garden which is laid out with geometric immediately aware of the pivotal
precision, emulating the grand gardens central axis, running southwest
of old Europe. And one of the newest and flanked by four symmetrical
members of our Vermont Nursery and quadrants each containing a small
Landscape Association, Andrea central lawn.  Within each
Luchini, is Hildene’s staff horticulturist quadrant the individual beds have
—see her profile in 2017 Fall Issue of complex outlines, all delineated
Top: Hildene Lilies and Feverfew (Tanacetum parthenium)
The Dirt. by low clipped privet hedges.
make a beautiful contrast in the ‘white quadrant'.
Then, for a complete contrast, garden Bottom: This view back towards the mansion shows the The long axis terminates in a
aficionados will be delighted to discover semi-circular rose garden backed
a lovely contemporary garden tucked by an imposing pergola and a
away behind the expansive Northshire Bookstore. This grand view back to the house.
quintessential 21st century garden, complete with flowing lines,
The Hoyt garden is justly famous for its peony collection, where
artistic stonework and an eclectic mix of flowers and shrubs, was
recently over 1,000 different types of peonies have been carefully
designed by Carrie Chalmers, longtime member of the VNLA as
documented and catalogued against century-old records.
well as a board of director for 6 years. You probably saw her article
‘For the Love of Umbellifers’ in most recent Winter Issue of The But summer does not end when the peonies stop blooming. The
Dirt. beds also contain plenty of later blooming perennials, including
Lilium, Hemerocallis, Salvia nemorosa, Veronicrastum virginicum,
The garden is close to the new roundabout that replaced the
Actaea racemosa, Tanacetum parthenium and Leucanthemum x
infamous ‘malfunction junction’. But, despite its central location,
superbum, with a different color theme assigned to each of the four
this lovely garden is sometimes overlooked by the visitor.
So, next time you are in Manchester, after browsing Northshire’s
The large estate offers plenty of other attractions for the garden-
extensive book stacks and perhaps finding that perfect book, be
minded visitor, starting with the ‘not to be missed’ containers of
sure to leave through the rear door and pay a visit to their
tender plants set in the shady porches around the house. Their big
delightful ‘back garden’.
leaves and exotic color schemes surely made this gardener
The Gardens of Hildene. Visiting Hildene is to take a trip back in envious.
time. After entering the main gates and strolling up the carriage
The vegetable garden looked extremely productive, but the
road flanked by tall trees you come to the large circular driveway
practical side of me noted its long distance from the main house,
and the imposing mansion set on a high promontory; you have
clearly not very convenient for popping out to get for a lettuce for
clearly ‘arrived’.

lunch. In fact, everything The flowerbeds are all filled with easy-
about Hildene reminds us care perennials of contrasting shapes,
that the entire estate such as the tall spikes of Veronicastrum
required a commensurately and shorter spikes of Salvia and Nepeta,
large staff to support the versus the daisy-like flowers of
daily life of the family. Leucanthemum and Coreopsis. And the
magenta poppy mallow, Callirhoe
The Garden at
involucrata, makes a brilliant splash as it
Northshire Bookstore.
wove around between its taller
After visiting Hildene, the
Northshire garden behind
the Bookstore will come as And finally, Carrie used clumps of tall
a complete contrast. grasses to create a strong visual barrier
Installed a little over ten from the parking lot—a far more
years ago, it was a practical solution
collaboration than a row shrubs
between Landscape which would
Designer Carrie interfere with
Chalmers and her winter snow
stonemason brother removal in the
Cameron. parking lot.

Although it is
sandwiched next to
a busy parking lot,
this is a surprisingly
intimate garden,
where people can
stroll around, Top: Carrie designed the Northshire Bookstore garden with raised beds with
perhaps stopping stone retaining walls with wide capstones that double as seating while the
awhile to read or metallic blue butterfly provides a beautiful focal point. Left: The upper level
chat.  And of course features a mix of shrubs including the Physocarpus ‘Diablo’. In the lower level
the upkeep, though perennial beds  the magenta poppy mallow, Callirhoe involucrata, weaves its
not zero, is orders of way between taller companions like  Culver’s root (Veronicastrum
magnitude less than virginicum). Right: Cameron’s stonework is a work of art in itself.
that needed at

The space incorporates two levels— a narrow upper level and a Vive la difference
more expansive lower level—separated by a meandering stone While everyone loves to visit the grand estates of yesteryear,
retaining wall and connecting steps. Be sure to cast you eyes people today want something entirely different when it comes to
upwards to admire the interesting mix of overhanging shrubs their own gardens. And these two gardens—created just a century
along the upper level, creating a tableau of texture and color all apart—tell us a lot about how our ideals have evolved over the last
season long. hundred years. Here are a few of my conclusions about gardens
In this garden, the first thing you notice is the absence of lawn. and gardeners for the 21st century:
Instead the walking spaces (or negative space) throughout the • People are not particularly interested in formality, either
lower level are created with finely crushed bluestone. in their lives or in their gardens;
The second thing you notice is the garden’s complex spatial • Gardeners enjoy a feeling of spontaneity, including a
layout, delineated by stunning stonework. And you can’t miss the relaxed spatial design and an eclectic mix of shrubs and
beautiful blue metal butterfly and some island stones set among perennials;
the crushed bluestone.
• Gardens do not require lawns to be complete;
On the lower level the flowerbeds are all slightly elevated, a nice
• People like to enjoy their plants up close;
touch that brings everything closer to people. They are edged with
substantial stonewalls with flat capstones that create extended • All gardens are much more than the sum of their plants;
seating areas. And, since all the plants in these beds were thriving
• And, last but by no means least, everyone wants a garden
in mid-summer, presumably good-quality topsoil and compost was
that will be easy to maintain!
brought in at the outset.
Book Reviews: On Native Plants for Vermont Gardens
by Judith Irven

Many of us remember Doug Tallamy’s talk a few years back at their environmental benefit. And equally important, they also
our VNLA Winter Meeting about the importance of including a note other species of that genus to avoid! In addition, for at
wide variety of native plants in our garden designs. least one plant in each genus, they provide a lovely photograph
taken at Garden in the Woods.
First and foremost, native plants are extremely beneficial for
the wider environment. In addition, since they are adapted to The authors have a delightfully chatty style which tells me they
our climate, they should be easy to grow. And finally they help are totally familiar with the practicalities of actually growing
us create gardens with that elusive feeling of ‘belonging’ in the all these plants successfully and of using them to their best
wider landscape. advantage within an overall garden design.
But a little thought also tells us that casually introducing a And, even though the book is organized alphabetically, this
profusion of wild plants into a client’s garden is not necessarily chatty style also makes it thoroughly enjoyable to read from
that straightforward! For instance, since most native plants are cover to cover. In doing this, I become acquainted with some
tough enough to endure competition in the wild, some species lovely plants that I had never even considered for my own
may be much too aggressive in a garden. Conversely some garden. For instance the Wreath Goldenrod (Solidago caesia)
species only grow in very unique habitats (such as on limestone and the Downy Goldenrod (S. puberula) are both well-behaved
bluffs) and are unlikely to survive in any garden that cannot diminutive plants that bloom at the same time as New England
replicate their special environments. And finally, it takes Asters—and they are completely different from their tall
knowledge and skill to harmoniously integrate wild flowers thuggish cousin, the Canada Goldenrod (S. canadensis) which
among more highly bred companions. always seems to arrive in my flower beds uninvited and, given a
chance, will colonize an entire meadow.
But there are hundreds of native plants that WILL work
beautifully in a garden setting. To help us get to know which And finally, they also offer useful lists of plants for specific
ones to use and how to grow them, two great new books conditions—such as sunny, shady, boggy or dry; and for various
describing the best native plants for use in the garden have just needs—to attract pollinators, songbirds or wildlife and for fall
arrived on the scene. color or winter interest.
Both books are incredibly informative and beautifully * (Please note Dan Jaffe will be our keynote speaker at the
illustrated and would make great additions to your long-term VNLA Summer Meeting & Trade Show on August 22, 2018).
collection of reference books. Let’s look at each in turn:
‘Essential Native Trees and Shrubs for the Eastern United
‘Native Plants for New England Gardens’ by Mark States’ by Tony Dove and Ginger Woolridge, published by
Richardson and Dan Jaffe*, published by Globe Pequot Charlesbridge

The authors have both worked for This book is readable, informative, extensively cross-referenced
decades at The New England and, of course, beautiful illustrated. Together the authors have
Wildflower Society’s legendary years of horticultural experience, one as a public garden
‘Garden in the Woods’, thus manager and the other as a landscape architect. And they too
accumulating a wealth of practical have drawn on their combined practical knowledge to select
experience on actually growing just those native woody plants that they recommend for using
native plants to their best advantage in a garden.
in a garden setting.
The book is organized into three parts for easy access and
This book has four sections, each detailed reference:
arranged alphabetically by genus:
Part 1: Site Conditions and Plant Attributes offers forty individual
• Herbaceous perennials lists that take you directly to the plants listed in Part 2.
• Trees and shrubs
Start here if you are looking for trees or shrubs with particular
• Ferns, grasses and sedges attributes, for instance those with showy flowers or evergreen
• Vines and other climbing plants leaves, or for plants that will tolerate shade, wind or salt, or
even deter deer. There are also lists of shrubs and trees that
For each genus the authors describe all the species they
will mature at different heights and many others.
consider truly garden-worthy, how they can best be used and

Part 2: Primary Trees and Shrubs, that in turn will feed the birds and other wildlife that we
organized alphabetically by treasure.
genus, is the core of the book. We all know that the landscape does not stop at the property
boundary; even the smallest garden is truly part of the wider
Here you will find a detailed and
continuous ecosystem. So, as designers, it behooves us to look
easy-to-understand description
for ways to create gardens that, in addition to being beautiful
of each featured plant, including
and giving pleasure to people, will also make a positive impact
its landscape attributes, seasons
on this wider environment.
of interest, size and form, texture
and color, cultural information, Incorporating a variety of native plants in your planting designs
wildlife benefits and is a great way to create beautiful wildlife-friendly gardens for
recommended companion your clients. And, as these two new books show, we literally
plants, as well as favorite have hundreds of choices of garden-worthy native plants to
cultivars. use.

In addition there are several photographs showing the plant

during different seasons, plus two invaluable charts: Together Judith Irven and her husband, Dick Conrad,
nurture a large garden in Goshen, Vermont. She is a
• A drawing showing the plant’s height and shape at maturity landscape designer and Vermont Certified
alongside a human figure for comparison, that could well be Horticulturist; she also teaches Sustainable Home
useful to share with clients; Landscaping for the UVM Extension Master Gardener
• The range of hardiness zones which the plant can program. She writes about her Vermont gardening life
accommodate plus its soil acidity and moisture at You can reach
requirements. her at
And, while the geographical scope of this book covers a
relatively large area— east of the Appalachians from Canada to
the Carolinas—do not let this deter you. A quick look at the

hardiness zone chart for each plant will tell you whether it is
viable for growing in Vermont.
Part 3: Secondary Plants, provides a brief description of
additional trees or shrubs that the authors feel might work is
certain situations, but also that had limitations for many
Thinking Outside the Box
Back in 2007 Douglas W. Tallamy, '
Professor of Entomology and
Wildlife Ecology at the University of
Delaware, published his ground-
breaking book ‘Bringing Nature
Home: How You Can Sustain Wildlife
with Native Plants’.
Here he summarized a considerable
body of academic research
demonstrating how native plants
create that all-important bottom
layer of the food-web in the
ecosystem. This is the layer that is 3'4+"567)$$8'9#++':/";'<'!"#$%"&='>?'@ABAB'
the food source for many kinds of insects, including pollinators
and butterflies.
And furthermore, he points out that most insects are
specialists; i.e. they require particular plant species—typically
native—for successfully reproduction. Thus a diverse mix of G)$)**#"+%"$,H0I$%J+/7"+K*)L'
native plants is essential to support a wide variety of insects,

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no kidding …

Attracting Talent in a New Era

by Jacki Hart

The single-most common topic of conversation I’ve heard getting new staff integrated into the company culture, working
safely and really set up to succeed.
among business owners in January and February of this year,
were centered on the topic of staffing. Discussions are ranging
This era of HR management is different in every way. By the
from how to find new ones, how to entrench the new ones, and
same measure that health and safety protocols and due
how to keep the good ones.
diligence have been introduced in the past 20 years – from zero
to full on … so now has the concept of onboarding. Gone are
In response to these burning questions, a Peer Network that I
the days when a seasonal business employer could hold an
facilitate set their winter agenda focused on recruiting,
orientation meeting at the start of their busy time with
onboarding and retaining staff. We gathered for two days,
whomever was ‘on the roster’ , and consider the seasons’
asking great questions,
training to be complete.
sharing tried, tested and
true techniques, and
A colleague of mine at
worked on a series of best
Landscape Ontario has
practices to apply this
recently coined the
phrase ‘Employers of
Choice’ to describe the
In January, we kicked off
recruiting program focus
with a panel discussion
employers must now
which included three HR
develop if they wish to
managers from companies
minimize the challenges
in the industry. They
that come with being
openly shared great
understaffed. Employers
information, and
need to become creative
techniques their
with how they tell their
companies are using to
story and manage their
find and keep new staff.
employees’ experience.
The discussion centered around the generation gap between
Statistics show that the Millennial generation (presently
Baby Boomers and the Gen X, and the Millennials, and how to
between the ages of 20 – 35) will change jobs every THREE to
effectively connect together.
FIVE years. They’re not likely coming to work for you as a
career. They might come into your industry looking for a
For the past three years, I’ve been researching the topic
career. And yes, some might stay 5-10 years…. Or longer if
extensively, and added the context of national trends to the
you’re lucky. But it will be the exception, not the rule to your
discussion. The resulting break out sessions were productive,
HR program.
effective and helped all of our peers to leave armed with fresh
ideas and cutting edge techniques. The topics of discussion
With this in mind, what employers must do is accept and adapt
ranged from how to get recruits to respond to ads, to actually
more quickly to this current reality, and create a line item
show up to interviews, eagerly engage in their new jobs, and
under their overhead expenses for onboarding and recruiting.
new ways to get them off to a great start.
Establishing an efficient onboarding program, which rolls out
We followed this session up with another two weeks later in
routinely with every new hire is the way forward. Employers
early February, where our discussion groups focused on the
who aren’t changing with the times, are being left in the dust
important topic of on-boarding….which is the process of
and severely short staffed.

Here are some tips to get you started: About the Author: Jacki Hart is president of Consulting by Hart
in Ontario, Canada. She is an entrepreneur, advisor, business
• Ask your newest employees what their experience was consultant, and workshop facilitator with a career in the Green
like when they joined your team, and how it could be Industry spanning 35 years. Jacki is one of Canada’s first women
improved. Listen them and take their observations to to hold the North American Green Industry certificate for business
heart. Involve them in creating a checklist of what should management excellence. Jacki also manages the Prosperity
happen in the early days and months onboard with you. Program and Peer to Peer Network for Landscape Ontario.
• Prepare hiring kits in advance, each containing the
necessary paperwork, training info and records, plus the Jacki writes for other trade magazines and will be a regular
steps through the onboarding process. Be proactive. contributor to our business column. CBH is a consulting firm that
• Consider adding staff-experience and ‘how-to-apply-here “passionately believes that entrepreneurial success depends on
tips’ videos on to your website, have an internal company sustained forward momentum - across all areas of business - both
facebook or snapchat pages for staff to connect and the visible and the invisible. To learn more about CBH visit
• Consider offering signing bonuses
• Learn how to strongly articulate and entrench your
company culture – those who have this in place are
leading the pack hands down (and might be beating you
at the recruiting game).

wiry stems, hairy leaves and bodacious blooms. . .

Make Room for Spring Beauties!

by Amy Olmsted, Rocky Dale Gardens

Nothing says ‘Spring is here!’ more moist but well drained. Once you
grow one of these you’ll be hooked
than my favorite perennial, the
and will want to collect as many as
Primrose. With so many to choose
you can. The color combinations are
from that are hardy for our tough
endless with the hundreds of hybrids
New England winters you can fill
available. I have been working on
your gardens with them. From the
growing this plant well and have had
streamside to the rock garden there
mixed success. They want a very free
is a Primrose for just about every
draining, gritty soil but don’t want to
growing situation. And if you pair
dry out completely. I have the best
them with other early spring
success growing them in a raised bed
ephemerals such as Hepatica,
instead of trying to overwinter them
Trillium, Corydalis, Helleborus and
in pots. They really fascinate me
Erythronium your gardens will shine
with their color combinations with
throughout the season into summer.
some looking completely unreal!

Good rich soil with some added compost,

Primula kisoana. For a spectacular
consistent moisture and a bit of afternoon
groundcover you should try this Primula
shade are mainly what these easy to
from Japan. It spreads readily by
please plants want. I’ve chosen a few of
underground stolons and covers itself in
my favorites from the bunch.
bright pink or white blooms from mid-
May to mid-June. The foliage is soft and
Primula veris. Also known as the cowslip
felted to the touch. It prefers a well-
this is usually one of the first perennials
drained and rich soil in part shade. It’s
to bloom in my garden. Extremely hardy
also easy to divide and spread around or
and very floriferous with sweetly scented
share with friends.
nodding blooms in shades of yellow,
apricot, orange and sometimes red. A
Candelabra Primroses. To continue the
vigorous plant requiring rich, moist soil
flower production into summer you must
and afternoon shade. They will seed
grow the many candelabra-type
around when happy.
primroses. These include P. japonica,
P. bulleyana & bullesiana. They all
Primula denticulata. This unusual
have stems that will reach 2-3’ tall
looking plant is also known as the
with tiers of bright flowers up the
drumstick primrose for its tightly
stems in shades of pink, orange, red
clustered flowers atop an 8” stem.
and yellow. There are many others in
The flowers put on a spectacular
this group but these three have been
display in April and May. These will
the easiest to grow in my gardens.
self sow and increase your
They will cross and self-sow creating
collection. Site them near a
a tapestry of color in a few years.
streamside or in very moist garden
They all prefer a moisture retentive
soil in part sun.

Primula auricula (pubescens). This

Top: P. veris; Center: P. denticulata
bright plant is perfect for a rock
entered at an American Primula Society
garden as long as the soil is rich,
show; Bottom: P. auricula.
Primula kisoana

Primula polyanthus. One of the easiest to grow and find is the

polyanthus primrose. These come in a rainbow of colors with
new forms coming out every year. Some with very frilly neon
colored petals and fully double flowers in many colors. Most
are very hardy for our gardens with little extra care.

Primula sieboldii. This one is one of my favorites being so

hardy and easy to grow. Available in a fantastic array of colors
and forms. In Japan where it’s native there are special societies
devoted to growing and showing these plants with very strict
rules as to how they are grown in pots. Here in the U.S. there
are quite a few named cultivars available from a few nurseries.
These Primula can take it quite a bit drier than most others and
will go dormant in the hottest part of the summer to return the
next spring bigger and more beautiful. They spread by fleshy
rhizomes and are easy to lift and divide.

There are so many more hardy species we can grow here in the
Northeast, you could have one in bloom through the entire
growing season! I really encourage you to give them a try and
see if you also don’t fall under their spell like I have.

Here are a few of my favorite websites I recommend for further

reading and enticement…..

Top: P. japonica; Center: P. polyanthus; Bottom: P. sieboldii.

P: 207-499-2994 F: 207-499-2912
Mailing Address: 24 Buzzell Rd, Biddeford ME 04005
GROWING FOR OVER 40 YEARS Physical Address: 291 Waterhouse Rd, Dayton ME 04005


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