Time to Register - Upcoming NOFA OLC Courses
NOFA Organic Lawn and Turf Course : Workshop is on Thursday, August 5th. Location: Save the Bay, Providence, RI. Regular Price: $150
Invasives workshop: Workshop is on Wednesday, August 18th, 9:00 am - 3:00 pm.
Location: Beardsley Zoo, Bridgeport, CT
Regular Price: $200 NOFA Member/AOLCP Price: $185
Compost Tea workshop: AOLCP early registration - August 16th. Workshop is on September 21st, 9:00 am - 3:00 pm. Location: Stonewall Farm, Keene, NH
Regular Price: $200 NOFA Member/AOLCP Price: $185 AOLCP Only Early Registration: $150
Help Us Get the Word Out!
Please email these calendar announcements to your colleagues, favorite
nursery, industry related organizations; include in your next e-news or post
it to your Facebook page! See a copy of our course flyer .
For course descriptions or to register click here or contact us at 203-888-5146
NOFA OLC is excited to announce the availability of partial scholarships for NOFA Accredited Organic Land Care Professionals interested in participating in NOFA OLC Advanced Workshops. Non-profit and Municipal employees are also encouraged to apply.
Recently, NOFA received funding allowing for scholarships that cover more than 50% of the cost of NOFA OLC Advanced Workshops to interested students who qualify. Scholarship recipients who are NOFA Accredited will be awarded $105 to apply to course fee of $200. Scholarships are limited and are reviewed on a rolling basis. To apply, please complete the following application:
Return completed form to the NOFA OLC Program Manager [mailto:email@example.com]
- Organic Invasive Removal - August 9th
- Producing and Applying Actively Aerated Compost Tea - September 10th
- Scholarship recipients are required to
complete a total of 5 volunteer hours within a year of the award date.
- Scholarship awards are applied to the base cost of the course (regular course discounts cannot be applied)
|Out and About
AOLCP Catherine Zimmerman to Appear on TODAY Show
BY KATHY LITCHFIELD - When she went back to school at age 50, AOLCP Catherine Zimmerman (CT course, '06) never dreamed she'd have the opportunity to appear on network television as a champion against pesticide use and a promoter of Organic Land Care (OLC) to a national audience.
Yet, on Sept. 13, Zimmerman will be featured on the NBC Today Show, the focus of Jane Pauley's "Your Life Calling" series. The segment profiles Americans 50 years or older, who have reinvented their careers in order to pursue their dreams. For Catherine that meant combining her 35 years as an award winning director of photography and her passion for OLC.
She said being filmed for the Today Show profile involved cameras literally following her around on given days - choosing native plants at a nursery, consulting with clients, at public speaking engagements, and walking in meadows. Jane Pauley even wanted to go back to the family farm where it all started to shoot Catherine's interview.
Zimmerman, who grew up on an Ohio farm spent her summers helping and learning how to care for the vegetable garden and the land from her dad. "I loved those years. Everything from our garden tasted so good," she recalled.
After taking the NOFA 5-day Accreditation Course, Zimmerman was hooked on OLC. She worked with meadow expert Michael Nadeau of Plantscapes, Inc. to write curriculum to teach an organic landscaping course at the USDA Graduate School Horticulture Program. For her lawn alternative section in the ten-week course, she created a video about the meadow being installed at the American Horticultural Society, took on additional organic meadow installation projects, and wanted to promote OLC further.
"I'm a project-oriented person and in my 50's what happened is I became more environmentally aware. I wanted to be able to teach other people."
Knowledge about OLC, she said in the greater Washington D.C. area where she lives is very inadequate. "There's a lot going on environmentally but I don't see people specializing in OLC down here and we really have to catch up. People are paying more attention, but they are still going into garden stores and dragging out bags of synthetic fertilizers to dump on their gardens and lawns. Because I know more now than I ever did and I want to educate more people."
Zimmerman knew she could reach more people through a book and video. Her book, Urban and Suburban Meadows: Bringing Meadowscaping to Big and Small Spaces, offers an enticing introduction to meadowscaping, as an alternative to planting non native grass lawns. As a foundation for the book and video, she worked intensively with Mike Nadeau, Larry Weaner and Neil Dibol all highly regarded meadow establishment experts. Entomologist Doug Tallamy contributed his expertise on the native plants/native insect connection.
"Their vast knowledge was invaluable," said Zimmerman. The book is filled with beautiful meadow photographs, plant lists and resource sections for nine regions in the United States. The book is designed to assist readers on how to bring diversity back to urban and suburban landscapes.
Today Zimmerman can be found today installing meadowscapes, at book signings up and down the east coast and as a frequent guest lecturer. Through her company, Gardens of the Three Graces and her newly published book, Catherine hope to guide and inspire clients and readers to do away with "pesticide-ridden, manicured lawns and return their land to a beautiful, natural habitat for native plants and wildlife." Her book is available through CT NOFA OLC or www.themeadowproject.com . The companion video will be available later this year. back to top
|AOLCPs in Action...
Richard Bajana, of Richard Landscaping, LLC in Bethesda, MD was recently featured in an article in the Gazette. "Bajana's organic landscaping service, Richard Landscaping LLC of Bethesda, is among a growing number of landscapers who forgo chemicals and work directly with the environment to create nearly self-sustaining gardens and lawns that aim to leave less of a "footprint" on the land." Read the complete story
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John Coppinger, of The Coppinger Company, The Green Guy, out of N. Chelmsford, MA. Was the topic of the Green Ayer News blog titled "Strength in numbers for greener lawn care." The writer of the blog goes on to say, "About a year and a half ago, one of my neighbors (three cheers, Richard Murphy!) was musing that with the number of people in our neighborhood who've begun to use lawn services, maybe some of us could band together to see if an organic lawn service company would give us a group rate." This group contacted John Coppinger, of The Coppinger Company which has an organic lawn care division, The Green Guy to inquire if he would consider giving them a group rate. Read the full story
In memorium - Sophie Corrigan
With great sadness we announce that Sophie Corrigan, a 2010 accredited organic land care professional, was a victum of an accident in Cape Cod, MA on July 17th. We send our condolences to her family and friends. The following link connects to Sophie's obituary. A memorial fund has been set up for her two children.
|Also of Interest...
NOFA Summer Conference
August 13 to 15, 2010, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA. Check out the site for exhibit/advertising opportunities and complete workshop listings and other details. Registration is now open. Early bird registration is before July 12th. AOLCP credit opportunities
available at the Conference.
Connecticut Tree Laws - This book is a Compilation of Pertinent Statutes and Regulations for Arborists, Forester, Tree Wardens and other involved with Connecticut's Trees.
Cost is only $10.00.
Please send a check for $10.00, made out to CT NOFA. Include your return address. To pay by credit card just call us at 203-888-5146. Our address is P.O. Box 164, Stevenson, CT 06491
CT NOFA City Farm & Garden Tour
, Saturday, August 7, 2010 ~ 10 am to 3 pm, New Haven, CT. Rain or shine ~ $20. Come and explore many of New Haven's private, community and school gardens, with a particular emphasis on vegetable gardens, edibles in the landscape, city poultry, and other aspects of agriculture found in New Haven.
Tickets for the tour are being sold at the Wooster Square Farmers Market, New Haven, CT on Saturday, August 7th.
Rain Gardens and More: Effective Use of Rainwater in the Landscape. September 25, 9 to 12 a.m. Garden in the Woods, 180 Hemenway Road, Framingham, MA. Members $33; non-members $39. Register on the website at www.newfs.org; or call Lana Reed at 508-877-7630, x 3303.
Girl's lawn wild "An ode to my new push reel lawn mower." This grist article is a fun personal experience in choosing a push mower. It also gives information on some brand names in push lawn mowers.
Washington, D.C., July 07, 2010
- The American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) today announced support for new Senate legislation designed to encourage green infrastructure - a novel, sustainable approach that uses natural systems of trees,plants and soils to manage rainwater instead of the overburdened and outdated infrastructure that currently exists in cities.
Introduced by U.S. Senator Tom Udall, the Green Infrastructure for Clean Water Act (S 3561) offers grants and technical assistance for communities to use green roofs, rain gardens and other sustainable approaches that naturally capture and clean the rainwater - often preventing the water from ever entering the sewer system.
The legislation would create between three and five centers around the country to research best green infrastructure practices and provide technical assistance to communities. S 3561 also provides community grants to implement these practices and create a green infrastructure program within the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Learn more about the issue
. Read the full story.
"DIRT"- The Movie "Floods, drought, climate change, even war are all directlyrelated to the way we are treating dirt." DIRT! The Movie--directed and produced by Bill Benenson and Gene Rosow--takes you inside the wonders of the soil. It tells the story of Earth's most valuable and underappreciated source of fertility--from its miraculous beginning to its crippling degradation. back to top
A showing of DIRT will be on Wednesday, August 11, 7:00 PM. At Berger Apartments, 135 Derby Avenue (Corner of Ellsworth Ave. and Derby Ave.), New Haven, CT. Cosponsored: West River Neighborhood Association & New Haven Bioregional/Transition Group. Bring a dessert to share!! We'll have a discussion after the movie.
Current AOLCP Credit Opportunities
The following classes and events have been approved for OLC credits. In order to see a complete description of an event and the number of credits that will be awarded for attendance please go to the credit opportunities page of our website. When you click on an event title, a complete description, including time, place, registration information, and number of credits will open.
8/13/10 - Mycoscaping: Mushrooms in the Permaculture Landscape, Amherst, MA
8/13/10 - Compost Technologies for Soil and Plant Health, Amherst, MA
8/13/10 - Tree and Plant Whispering: An Experience, Amherst, MA
8/13/10 - Approving Organic Materials and Ag Inputs, Amherst, MA
8/13/10 - A Practical Experience with the Promise of Biochar, Amherst, MA
8/13/10 - Soil Fertility in Organic Farming, Amherst, MA
8/13/10 - Natural honeybees management, Amherst, MA
8/13/10 - Edible Landscapes, Amherst, MA
8/14/10 - Soil Health, Amherst, MA
8/14/10 - The Details of High School Composting and Gardening, Amherst, MA
8/14/10 - A Farmer's Report Along the Path to High Brix, Amherst, MA
8/14/10 - Permaculture Principles in Home Landscape Design, Amherst, MA
8/14/10 - How to Get Started in Beekeeping, Amherst, MA
8/14/10 - Unraveling the Mystery of Humus and Humic Acids, Amherst, MA
8/14/10 - Composting for Beginners, Amherst, MA
8/14/10 - The History, Science and Art of Biochar, Amherst, MA
8/14/10 - Pomona's Secrets: Hardy, Delectable, Pest-free Fruits, Amherst, MA
8/14/10 - NOFA-NJ Organic Gardening Series, Hillsborough, NJ
8/14/10 - Vermiculture: The Wonderful World of Worm Composting, Amherst, MA
8/15/10 - Worm Composting - From The Ground Up, Amherst, MA
8/15/10 - Gardening in Small Spaces, Amherst, MA
8/15/10 - Growing Herbs in Containers , Amherst, MA
8/15/10 - The Home Apple Orchard, Amherst, MA
8/15/10 - Pollinator-friendly Landscaping, Amherst, MA
8/15/10 - An Upstart in the Land Care Field: How Can AOLCPs Adjust, Adapt and Thrive? , Amherst, MA
8/15/10 - Creating Enthusiasm for Change in Your Community, Amherst, MA
8/15/10 - Preventing Back Injuries on the Farm and in the Garden, Amherst, MA
8/18/10 - Organic Invasive Removal with Mike Nadeau, Bridgeport, CT
8/19/10 - Organic Land Care Workshop, Oregon City, OR
8/21/10 - Design Build Bio-Retention Pool: Marie Stella and Don Milbier, Ashfield, MA
8/22/10 - Biodiversity Conservation, Rhinebeck, NY
8/24/10 - Grassy Weeds: An in-depth look, Amherst, MA CANCELLED
8/27/10 - The Art of Water in the Garden, Wellesley, MA
8/28/10 - Edible Landscape Design & Maintenance, Jamaica Plain, MA
9/1/10 - Ornamental Herbaceous Plants: Summer and Fall Perennials, Bronx, NY
9/7/10 - Ornamental Herbaceous Plants: Summer and Fall Perennials, Bronx, NY
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|NOFA Standards Review|
The following excerpt on Principles of Organic Land Care can be found on page 5 of the NOFA Standards for Organic Land Care.
By increasing plant biomass and soil organic matter, more carbon is stored on-site, which reduces
greenhouse gas effects on the earth's atmosphere. The production and use of synthetic fertilizer,
particularly nitrogen, significantly contributes to greenhouse gases. This is an important reason to use
natural materials as fertilizers.
Proper choice and placement of plants may improve quality of life and reduce impact on the
environment, including such conditions as dust, pollutant drift, snow drift, temperature modification, air
flow and visual impacts.
Air is an essential component of soil and is a requirement for healthy root growth. A typical
landscape soil contains 5% humus, 45% mineral, 25% air, and 25% water. This soil is easy to grow
plants in, holds moisture, minimizes erosion and provides air to aerobic microorganisms and roots
of plants. There are other soil types that contain more or less air that are perfectly natural and should
be left in their natural state.
Create buffers (or put up fencing) to protect the property from spray, drift, dust and other
Utilize aerobic compost properly on site (to minimize air pollution from transporting
materials to and from the site)
Choose and place plants to moderate temperature and influence airflow
Use methods that maintain adequate soil organic matter and natural soil porosity, and
reduce soil compaction
Mechanical aeration and breakdown of cores
Application of organic matter or sand
Irrigation (only when necessary)
Limited use of leaf blowers and other power equipment that cause air and noise pollution
Appropriate use of heavy equipment
Approved soil amendments properly applied
Organic soil flocculent
Over-application of soil amendments that may cause soil compaction and/or air pollution
Over-watering that may block or reduce aeration of the soil
Excessive mechanical aeration or rototilling and resultant oxidation of organic matter and
Any non-approved soil amendments