* * Angel Hill Farm * *
* * WV Master Gardener * *
This study guide is not University funded ADA pdf comliant.
Welcome and Policies : Land Grant Institutions such as West Virginia University are uniquely American. Become familiar with the history and organization of WVU Extension Service and understand the responsibilities
of a West Virginia Extension Master Gardener.
Because West Virginia Extension Master Gardeners are primarily teachers, they need good communications skills to be effective. This chapter covers many communication topics, including use of identity and branding standards, interpersonal communications, writing, speaking, and giving presentations to various audiences.
Botony is the science of plants. To gain a working knowledge of horticulture, it is necessary to understand the structure and function of plants, as well as environmental factors effecting their growth.
Plant propagation is the process of multiplying the number of species, perpetuating a species or maintaining the youthfulness of a plant. propagation may be sexual or asexual.
Sometimes a gardener needs to take immediate action to kill a pest. A selected pesticide should be one that does not harm the pesticide applicator or the environment. Extension Master Gardeners need to know about state pesticide laws, application equipment, safe mixing and handling practices, storage and disposal methods, and environmental hazards
associated with pesticide use.
An estimated 100,000 different species of insects and mites live in North America. The vast majority are either beneficial of harmless. But the 3% of insects classified as pests annually destroy millions of dollars of crops, fruits, shade trees and ornamental plants, stored products and household items.
Plant diseases are caused by many biotic or living agents, such as fungi, nematodes, bacteria, and viruses by abiotic or nonliving factors, including nutrient deficiencies and water or temperature stress ; or sometimes by a combination of them. About 30,000 plant diseases of economic importance are found in the United States.
Soil provides support, water and nutrients for growing plants. Soil is made up of weathered rock fragments and newly formed clay minerals, along with decaying remains of plants and animals, air, water and microorganism.
Properly managed fine-textured grass species create a uniform ground cover that complements other ornamentals in the landscape. Turf that is weedy and thin will detract from the intended beauty of the entire landscape.
Vegetable plants, which are tender and shallow-rooted, compete poorly against weeds for food and water. Learning about gardening techniques, drawing a garden plan, and keeping notes on each years performance can improve results of a vegetable garden.
The equipment a gardener needs depends on the size of the garden and the gardeners age and strength. Gardening equipment includes hand tools, and power tools. Most gardeners need at least a hoe, a rake, a trowel,
and a shovel or spade.
Growing tree fruits requires more work than simple planting and harvesting. Gardeners must carry out specific cultural practices to achieve good yields of quality fruit. Home gardeners are encouraged to buy varieties having resistance to diseases and/or insects. Dwarf fruit trees bear earlier and are easier to prune and spray than standard size trees.
Small fruits are good crops for home gardens because they require little space and bear fruit one or two years after planting. The gardener must give attention to site and variety selection, soil management, fertilizing,
pruning, and pest control.
Home gardeners may feel they should prune plants, but they often do not know why or how. This chapter explains why and when ornamental plants need to be pruned and the techniques and tools needed
for successful pruning.
Compost : A mixture of decomposed leaves, grass clippings, other plant materials, and possibly kitchen waste can enrich the quality of soil. Just about every gardener or homeowner can make compost
from most kinds of organic waste
Carefully and deliberately creating a landscape plan can help a homeowner avoid making rushed decisions that lead to costly mistakes. Whether developing a full landscape master plan or making a simple planting near the house, the homeowner should consider the appearance
and best use of the site.
Most home and office environments are poorly suited to the needs of tropical plants. Houseplant owners must select plants that can best withstand the conditions of a specific indoor location and then give them the proper care.
The large body of plants comprises trees, shrubs, and vines. This chapter discusses procedures for selecting, planting, and caring for woody plants,
as well as environmental factors influencing plant growth.
Most garden flowers are herbaceous perennials, meaning the leaves, stems, flowers, and tops of the plants die back to the ground each fall. In the spring new plant tops arise from the roots. In addition to being beautiful, these plants may be useful, providing herbs for the table
and cut flowers for arrangements
Depending on the species, animals can either add to a person's enjoyment of the garden or destroy the garden. Homeowners can attract birds by providing feeders and water and by planting trees, shrubs, and vines they can use for food, shelter, and a place to raise their young. Various methods may be used to control unwanted animals.
People suffering from arthritis, low vision, limited mobility, and other physical conditions can continue to enjoy gardening. Many companies offer ergonomic and adaptive garden tools. In addition, West Virginia AgrAbility can help gardeners identify modifications and accessibility options to accommodate any type of physical limitation.
Native plants include those that occur naturally and those that have developed or existed for many years in an area. Using native plants in the landscape helps to address ecological concerns
of maintaining biological diversity.
* * * Organic Farming * * *
Angel Hill Farm 2020