Be Healthy, Grow Your Own


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  • This is a short list of topics.
  • Master Gardeners handle all of the transplant production from seed to plant. They assist by organizing and distributing seeds and transplants to participants. Participants complete a checklist of the number of plants and varieties that they want. MGs work off of that information. They also assist the classroom portion by organizing and assembling binders, registration, check-in, facilitating the class, making coffee, organizing refreshments, helping with the day-to-day classroom stuff. MGs provide educational support in the garden by circulating through and answering questions, offering suggestions, providing support, etc.
  • Be Healthy, Grow Your Own

    1. Be Healthy, GrowYour OwnBeth Shephard & Linda SealsBrevard County UF/IFAS Extension 1
    2. Why We Do This Class Rising grocery prices Healthier Food safety eating concerns Requests for Information Increased Interest in Sustainability organics 2
    3. We have land! 3
    4. Objectives Increase confidence in Increase consumption of vegetable gardening fresh vegetables• Newcomers to Florida are • Increasing fruits and challenged by our unusual vegetables increases growing season health benefits.• Water quality/quantity • People have heard so issues many different things• Many people do not know about what foods are safe. where to start • People do not know how to prepare “new” vegetables so they don’t consume them. 4
    5. The Class• 12 Weeks Addresses different learning styles• 2-hour lecture Visual• 2-4 hours in the garden Kinesthetic Auditory 5
    6. The Class Participants • Nearly 80 in each class 48 Plots • 20 x 20 foot • Usually more than one person per plot 6
    7. The Participants • They can access the garden anytime. • They can bring their own plants and seeds if they want to grow things not on our listHands-on class sessions are • They are encouragedmonitored by Master Gardenerswho walk around and provide to be creative, and toguidance. experiment with new vegetables 7
    8. Creativity is encouraged! 8
    9. Planting day 9
    10. The Class Program uses a multi-disciplinary approach Urban Commercial Horticulture Horticulture Family & Consumer Agriculture Sciences 10
    11. TopicsGrow Fertilizer Irrigation Pest Management Soil ManagementHealthy Harvesting Cooking Food Safety 11 Preserving
    12. What They GetEducational Florida Vegetable handbookMaterials Loupe Pest ID booklet Extension marketing materials Binder of informationGrowing SeedsMaterials Transplants Soil amendments Irrigation supplies 12 Tools & equipment
    13. Master Gardener Involvement Growing Assisting Teaching 13 Master Gardeners volunteer over 2,000 hours per class!
    14. Master Gardeners assist with every phase of the class. Here they are 14organizing plants to be delivered to the plots. On the first day of class,participants complete a checklist of the plants they want to grow.
    15. Transplants Produced by Master Gardeners 15
    16. Resources What we did Alternatives• Land • Land • We have 2-5 acres • Could downsize and have• Volunteers one plot for everyone • Master Gardeners • Volunteers• Expertise in gardening • Master Gardeners • Master Gardeners • Expertise in gardening • Other agents, specialists • Master Gardeners • Other agents, specialists 16
    17. Resources What we did Alternatives• Production facility • Production facility • Built a greenhouse funded • Purchase or seek by a grant and class fees donations for• Preparing the site seeds/transplants • Solicited help from other • Preparing the site agencies • Solicit help from other • Purchased a tractor in agencies and/or farmers November • Paid to haul mushroom compost 17
    18. Evaluation• Before and after reflective evaluations are conducted on the last day of class and 6 months later.• The following data collected from a 6- month, before and after reflective evaluation of the first class participants. • Respondents = 41 18
    19. Outcomes I am confident I can grow my own vegetables “Just a note to let you know that I am still getting tomatoes and Brussels Before sprouts out of my plot 22% #6! Bigger news is that I have started my own garden on my property. I will be planting this March on a 12’ by 8’ plot. Wish After me luck!” 78% 19
    20. Outcomes I use an Integrated Pest Management Program Before 24% After 76% 20
    21. Vegetables and Flowers! 21
    22. Outcomes I consider the health benefits of eating fresh vegetables Before After 49% 51% 22
    23. Outcomes I will preserve my excess produce Before 27% After 73% 23
    24. Our Challenges• Program is too large for one agent to manage • Irrigation issues – who is going to make those repairs? • Pest issues – who is going to apply pesticides? • Questions, questions, ques tions!! • Must utilize Master Gardeners to the max! • Canning/preserving classes for a large group are challenging • Cooking classes for a large group…challenging! 24
    25. Our Challenges • Weather • In Florida, cold can be an issue • Classroom Management • Large class = too many questions from individuals. Instructors must be able to manage the classroom 25
    26. Work Rain or Shine 26
    27. Changes for the next class• Install different irrigation system to reduce maintenance issues• Incorporate more hands-on activities • Fertilizer lesson moved outdoors to demonstrate calculation and application methods • Demonstrate seed sowing, planting, harvesting techniques• Include a lesson on Extension: how we work, who we are, how participants can help us promote Extension in our county• Offer more training classes for Master Gardeners to increase participation 27
    28. So What?Growing Participants learn how to properly apply fertilizer and pesticides Participants develop an appreciation for gardening and nature Participants teach others Garden plots attract attention 28
    29. So What?Healthy New appreciation for locally grown/fresh food Willing to eat vegetables they have never tried Learn how to cook healthier Learn about food safety Increased consumption of fresh vegetables 29
    30. Yum! 30
    31. Beets! 31
    32. So What? New friendships are formedOther Sense of community is developed Extension gets positive publicity Creates new things for Master Gardeners to do Recruiting opportunity for Master Gardener 32 programs
    33. Take Home MessagesGrowing your own Hands-on food increases education consumption enhances learning Collaborating Builds increases communities and programming relationships 33 efforts