Burlington--Wondering what type of mulch to use in your vegetable garden? Or why your peonies won't bloom? Perhaps you want to try composting but don't know how to start.
University of Vermont (UVM) Extension Master Gardeners are available to help answer home gardening questions from Vermont and northern New Hampshire gardeners. You can call the helpline toll-free number at (800) 639-2230 or (802) 656-5421 between 9 a.m. and noon, Monday through Thursday.
The volunteers who staff the helpline have all completed a comprehensive 13-week horticultural course and 40-hour internship to become certified Master Gardeners. They can answer questions on a wide range of home horticultural topics including garden preparation and planting; vegetable, fruit and flower gardening; trees and shrubs; mulching; landscaping; composting; plant diseases; and insect pests.
You are also welcome to stop by the helpline office at 201 Jeffords Hall on the UVM campus during regular helpline hours. Or submit your questions at http://go.uvm.edu/ask-a-master-gardener for an answer in five to seven business days. The on-line form includes an option for providing photos.
Are pests attacking your vegetables, berry bushes or annuals? Extension Master Gardeners can help identify both insects and diseased plants. Go to www.uvm.edu/extension/mastergardener and click on "Master Gardener Helpline" for instructions on how to submit samples.
Commercial growers with questions involving a pest or disease issue should contact the UVM Plant Diagnostic Clinic at (802) 656-0493 or e-mail Ann Hazelrigg, the clinic coordinator, at email@example.com.