The Latest Dirt - July 2023
What Happens at Ask a Master Gardener Tables?
By Laura Brainin–Rodriguez
We also give donated seeds, butterfly and flower stickers and bookmarks to children and distribute Pest notes and other resources.
We hear wonderful, funny, sometimes bizarre anecdotes from our clients. At a recent event, we heard about a woman who felt sorry for how rats were treated where she lived, so she set up a garden where the neighborhood rats could thrive. We were relieved to know that her garden is in Dubai!
We staff tables in places where people frequent, like Farmers Markets (83 times at 10 different Farmers Markets in 2023); Festivals (Art and Wind Festival in San Ramon, Beaver Festival in Martinez, Forest Farms Sheep Shearing Day, John Muir Birthday–Earth Day Celebration), The Great Tomato Plant Sales (5 events in 2023); Garden Talks at Our Garden (30 times in 2023); Community Events (Ruth Bancroft Pollinator Celebration) and a few other events helmed by our stellar cast of AAMG leads.
What makes all this possible is the commitment and engagement of our stellar cast of AAMG leads: (in alphabetical order by farmers market) Neal Hoellwarth (Brentwood), Anne Sutherland, new in 2023, (Concord), Anne Diggins and Bob Archer (Danville), Brian Kerss, new in 2023 (Kensington), Paul Borenstein (Martinez), Robert Nagel and Sue Andersen–Berger (Moraga), Brian Kerss and Dan Lent (Pinole), Stephanie Hargrave (Our Garden), Greg Doyle and Terri Takusagawa (San Ramon City Center), Jon and Bonnie Dwyer (San Ramon City Center), John Fike (Shadelands), and Keith Silva (Walnut Creek).
There’s no reason to be intimidated working at a table and answering questions from the public, as 3–4 UC Master Gardeners typically staff each table with various levels of experience and expertise. We almost always come up with an answer either individually, as a team, or with books, pest notes, or technology (googling UCIPM).
We are ahead of the curve for 2022–2023 compared with 2021–2022. In the prior fiscal year, we reached 5490 people; in the fiscal year about to end, we reached 8155!
We hope you will be inspired to join our upcoming fun, interactive and busy tables in July–October 2023. AAMG is an excellent and quick way to get your volunteer hours, shop for produce at a Farmers Market, enjoy the fresh air and hang out with knowledgeable UC Master Gardeners. Our friendly and supportive AAMG leads look forward to tabling with new and returning volunteers.