Master Gardening for Resilience During Covid-19

The COVID pandemic has led to a huge resurgence of interest in gardening. During this difficult time, gardening is helping people to stay physically and mentally healthy and providing a welcome release from the stresses related to this crisis. UVM Extension Master Gardener and Composter volunteers provide the most reliable, relevant, research-based information on gardening that exists, extending their knowledge and expertise into communities across Vermont.

2020 COVID Volunteer Update

The 2020 volunteer hours requirement has been relaxed. All active 2020 volunteers will remain active in 2021. All 2019 and 2020 interns will be granted 3 years to meet their initial certification requirements.

Resumption of Volunteer Activity Phase 1: Beginning on July 10, 2020

Allowed Activities:

  • Volunteer activities are encouraged to be conducted remotely (online), substituting remote options for in-person interaction whenever possible.

  • Any outdoor volunteer activities essential to food production and mentorship in groups of 10 or less.

  • Any outdoor volunteer activities essential to maintaining critical public spaces such as community, historic and demonstration gardens in groups of 10 or less.

  • Any outdoor time-critical activities that cannot be performed at another time.

Suspended Activities (Until Phase 2):

  • All indoor volunteer activities regardless of group size.

  • All in-person classes of more than 10 people occurring outside.

Vermont Vegetable Gardening Resource Map

We've heard from people all around the state that they need help to start vegetable gardening. Our goal is to connect those with food-growing resources — including seeds, soil, compost, tools, equipment, land, labor, and knowledge — with those who lack such resources, and ultimately to get as much land as possible producing food during this time of uncertainty. 

  • To share a gardening resource, please fill out this form  Then be ready to receive inquires from people in your area who need your help.
  • (You will show up as a pink flower icon on the map)
  • Looking for a garden resource? Please fill out this form to be featured as someone seeking a resource (You will show up as a blue eye on the map)

To use the map. Click on each flower symbol to view the resources people are willing to share. Click on the blue eye symbol to view the resources people are looking for.

Master Gardener Projects

Ordering Status of Gardening/Seed Companies

Worried about not finding what you need this gardening season? Here is a handy reference guide that tells you about the ordering status at various gardening/seed companies.

View the guide here!

Vegetable Gardening Videos

Master Gardeners volunteers are creating short videos on basic vegetable gardening topics to help the public start gardening this season.

Vermont Victory Gardens

VT Victory Gardens is a Master Gardener project lead by Gordon Clark that will support those suffering from food insecurity with the planning and construction of garden plots, access to seeds and/or vegetable starts, season-long instruction on science-based methods for growing vegetables, including presentations, teleconference and hands-on work.

Learn more about Gardening for RESILIENCE

Does the COVID-19 pandemic have you thinking about growing your own food or growing food for others?

Here are a few research-based resources to get started.

BIPOC-LED HOW TO VIDEOS, GARDENING PROJECTS & ONLINE LEARNING RESOURCES

Agricultura Urbana Sostenible: Tenga su propia Huerta en Casa!

Agricultura Urbana Sostenible: Tenga su propia Huerta en Casa! Clases virtuales gratuitas. Aprenda a producir vegetales en su casa asistiendo a estas clases virtuales los miércoles a las 7:00pm desde el 24 de junio al 12 de agosto Para registrarse vaya a esta página: https://extension2.missouri.edu/events/agricultura-urbana-sostenible Evento ofrecido en idioma español únicamente. Este programa provee información hortícola, con base in investigación científica, a residentes de áreas urbanas. Los participantes aprenderán conceptos y técnicas a través de clases en línea ofrecidas por medio de Zoom. El programa resume los beneficios de la producción de vegetales en áreas urbanas como ser, el acceso a alimentos, dietas saludables, reducción de costos de manutención, y salud mental.

Contacto: Juan Cabrera-Garcia, jcabrera-garcia@missouri.edu, 573-686-8064 #ExtendMU #2xAg2030

New! 4-H Family Gardening Series-Starts July 7

To encourage kids and their families to grow food and eat together, University of Vermont (UVM) Extension 4-H has developed Eating What We Grow, an online bi-weekly gardening series that will run throughout the summer.

For more info go here:
https://www.uvm.edu/newsstories/news/family-gardening-series-kicks-july-7

Remote Volunteering Ideas

Schedule an online class, teach others how to garden. It could be a presentation or just a Q&A session. People often have lots of questions, invite them to meet you online and answer a few for them. Advertise your event on the master gardener listserv, online calender and in your own community. 

Contact Julie Marks about writing a short article for the next statewide volunteer newsletter (jlmarks722@gmail.com).
 
Sign up for gardening or composting webinar.

Work with a project leader to apply for a project grant. 
 
Offer to make plant tags or educational signs for a demo garden near you -  and contact the project leader to help.
 
Do you have fundraising expertise? Please contact Cindy about helping with this year's EMG Conference to be held in November.

Do that extra thing you've always wanted to do for your project but haven't had the time to do, plant that fruit tree, research growing that thing you've always wanted to try. Make that educational sign you've been meaning to make. Now is your chance!

Community Composting During COVID 19

Getting Started with Vegetable Gardening (pdf)

Planning Before Planting a Vegetable Garden

https://ag.umass.edu/home-lawn-garden/fact-sheets/planning-vegetable-garden

Growing Your Own - Oregon State University, Extension Service

Grow Your Own Food, Step-by-Step Guide - by Christopher Forrest McDowell, PhD, & Tricia Clark-McDowell

 Planting the Garden - University of Vermont Extension,  Master Gardeners

Getting your garden started with Leonard Perry (Video)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ux9Y5V0MXng

Soil Test Lab at UVM

How to Take a Soil Sample for Testing

Raised Beds (How to turn lawn into a garden)

Vegetable Gardening in Small Spaces

Consider Growing a Row for Someone in Need this Season

Regenerative Agriculture for the Home Gardener - Webinar

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLScHguDvD2XA7Vf65fFHFr4pxxExe88TZ7tzTi9NAa3SgY_g8w/viewform

Tuesday, April 14 from 7-9 pm, featuring Master Composter CAT BUXTON, co-founder of the Vermont Healthy Soils Coalition. Co-sponsored by 350VT and Sustainable Williston. The webinar will cover all aspects of starting your regenerative garden this spring, from cover cropping to no till methods. If you're interested in learning how to build soil health and sequester carbon while growing your own food then please fill out this form and we'll send you the Zoom link for the webinar.

Curriculum: Choosing Growing & Preparing VT Grown Fruits and Vegetables

More COVID-19 Resources at UVM Extension