Re-accreditation Reminder 


You can still re-accredit for 2012.  

Being an AOLCP gives you a respected credential to use with potential clients and employers, showing that you have been educated to the highest standards available by the leading U.S organization in organic landscaping! 

Other marketing and educational benefits include
- Your listing in the online searchable AOLCP database and in online and print versions of the NOFA Guide to Organic Land Care.
-Use of the NOFA Organic Land Care logo and other promotional materials.
-Discounts at NOFA OLC Advanced Workshops and events.
-Eligibility to be paid for teaching, consulting or public speaking engagements. 
-Eligibility to be featured in NOFA OLC press releases, in our newsletter, and on our website.
-Networking with a community of highly trained and committed organic professionals.  
Thank you AOLCPs! Your support of the NOFA OLC Program allows us to continue to offer quality education in Organic Land Care and to actively publicize and promote organic lawns, gardens and landscapes locally and nationally.


If you want to check your status, contact Clara


We'd like to welcome these new Accredited Organic Land Care Professionals who just graduated from our course in Rhode Island


Tony Askew - Maria Landscaping, Inc., Hyde Park, MA; Alisa Berns - Taproot Gardening Services, Grand Marais, MN; Mason Brown - Wakefield, RI; Todd Caswell - Natural Tree & Lawn Care, Avon, MA; Randy Cole - Cole Landscape & Masonry, West Windsor, VT; Robert Deladda - Three D. Landscape Architecture & Construction LLC, North Stonington, CT; Chris Gerbert - Gerbert & Sons Landscaping & Irrigation, Inc., Stamford, CT; Lisa Gibson - Gardens for All Seasons, Medfield, MA; Samantha Giordano - Young's Nursery, Wilton, CT; Justin High - Arbor Culture, Park Ridge, NJ; Fred Holdswort - Frederick's Landscaping Corp., Springhouse, PA; Stephen Jackson - Providence, RI; Lauri Johnson - Lauri Johnson Landscape Design, Reading, MA; Hugh Knowlton - Bergen Community College, Old Tappan, NJ; Kevin Meindl - Rock Solid Landscaping, Inc., Buffalo, NY; Leonard Pouder - Lieb's Nursery and Garden Center, New Rochelle, NY; Kerry Preston - Wisteria & Rose Inc., Jamaica Plain, MA; Teresa Puza - Gardens to Imagine, LLC, Henniker, NH; Kathy Sheehan - Gardens by Romi, Inc., Southampton, NY; Shi Shukri - Ashaway, RI; Romi Sloan - Gardens by Romi, Southampton, NY; Marianne Soldner - Maple Hill Farm, Gaylordsville, CT; Kelly Storrs - Dames Rocket Landscape Design, Woodstock, NY; Dan Talbot - Talbot's Creative Gardening LLC, Cambridge, MA; Larry Taylor - Maltby & Company, Stoughton, MA; Matt Tudisco - Arbor Culture, Park Ridge, NJ; Justin White - Hoxie Landscape Services, Inc., Sandwich, MA

We'd also like to thank: Bruce MacDonald - Master Gardeners RI, Wakefield, RI; Rosanne Sherry - URI Mallon Outreach Center, Kingston, RI.  Thanks so much for attending our course!

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Out and About with AOLCPs
Kevin Burke Reintroduces Streetcars to Atlanta with 1,200 Acres of Organic Parks
ATLANTA, GA. - Since Kevin Burke moved to Atlanta three years ago, he has been very busy.

Not only has he voluntarily organized two organic land care symposia attracting over 220 landscape architects, students, park personnel, and contractors, but his efforts served as the impetus for the University of Georgia to begin organic land care research on warm season grasses with funding from a private foundation.

Burke, a New Jersey native who worked on Boston's Big Dig project for 14 years, is the Senior Landscape Architect of the 20-year, $3 billion multi-modal Atlanta BeltLine Project, to reintroduce streetcar to Atlanta, along with creating 1,200 acres of new or renovated parkland.  Read more>

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What's Your Plan for Marketing Organic This Spring?
From AOLCP Chris Gerbert in Stamford, CT


Using our logo is a great way to show your clients that you are accredited! 


You can request a copy of the logo to use on your business cards, website, and any other publications. Contact Clara for a copy of the logo.

Here is a great example of our logo at work!



If you want to have our logo shown on your company's vehicle, but don't want to spend all the time and money getting it painted on, you can purchase an Accredited Professional Car Magnet from our online store!  Magnets measure 7.75x4.75" and cost $5.00 each.  Order yours today to give your business an extra boost!   


Don't forget, our Introduction to Organic Lawns and Yards booklet and Organic Land Care brochure are both easy and inexpensive tools to promote organic and your services. Add your business information to the back cover of the IOLY booklet, or to the blank space provided on the brochure. Purchase OLC brochures here and IOLY booklets here.  View a PDF version of the IOLY booklet here.  Market organic and market yourself, all at the same time!





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Events and Outreach

New Credit opportunities for AOLCPs
You can earn two (2) credits per year by volunteering to table at a local event for four hours. Promote your business while educating the public on organic land care.

Hamden Earth Day  - Saturday, April 21, 2012, 9-3:30, Hamden, CT. 

If there is an Earth Day event in your area that you would like to volunteer at for credit, let us know and we will determine if you can receive credit for it.  We will provide you with CT NOFA materials for your event when requested.


Beech Bark Disease: Biology, Ecology, and Forest Responses
Wednesday, May 23, 2012  

Tea: 10:00am

Lecture: 10:30am - Dr. David R. Houston 

Jones Auditorium

CT Agriculture Experiment Station 


2012 CT Invasive Plant Working Group Symposium

Thursday October 25, 2012

Uconn, Storrs, CT 

Developing Guidelines for the Disposal of Terrestrial Invasive Plants to provide the public with information that will help prevent the unintentional spread of invasive plants. These guidelines are available to the public in hardcopy and online.

Stay tuned for information about our upcoming pruning workshop later this spring!

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Announcements and News
Thanks so Much for Your Feedback!
Remember that Business Survey for AOLCPs that we sent around last winter? We drew an e-mail from the e-mails entered for a drawing for a $50 credit towards Accreditation or a registration fee! Our lucky winner is Sanne Kure-Jensen from Rhode Island.  She has been accredited since 2006 and is also a Master Gardener, beekeeper and writes on the topics of gardening and sustainability. She owns SKJ Consulting which focuses on landscape and ecological consulting.  In our business survey, we asked what would be helpful to you in improving your business for 2012 and beyond.  50% of respondents asked for help with marketing.  When asked how NOFA OLC could help, about 75% of respondents called for more publicity for organic land care, and about 50% asked for more publicity for their business.  In response to these survey results, we are working on a marketing package and another survey (bear with us) to help us refine our marketing as we go forward in the way that best serves NOFA's AOLCPs.  We will again be drawing an e-mail from the respondents for a discount on your reaccreditation. Your feedback helps us!

AOLCP Offers Input on Lyme-Old Lyme Efforts to go Organic
Old Lyme - If the athletic fields have been looking pretty dismal since the town stopped applying pesticides and fertilizers last year, it's no wonder, according to Todd Harrington, an expert in organic land care. More>

An AOLCP with his hands in farming and Land Care
Dancing Dog Farm has moved from Peterborough to lower Windmill Hill Road in Dublin - along with a new dancing dog, a handsome one-year-old English Shepherd named Levi. Also in residence are four vocal and pugnacious geese, a flirtatious Marmalade cat, a flock of chickens, a herd of goats supervised by a small bay pony - and yes, farmers Carol Lake and Peter Schmidt and their son, Geordie, a junior at ConVal with a liking for chemistry.  More>

Why Trees Matter - New York Times

Trees are on the front lines of our changing climate. And when the oldest trees in the world suddenly start dying, it's time to pay attention.  North America's ancient alpine bristlecone forests are falling victim to a voracious beetle and an Asian fungus. In Texas, a prolonged drought killed more than five million urban shade trees last year and an additional half-billion trees in parks and forests. In the Amazon, two severe droughts have killed billions more.  The common factor has been hotter, drier weather. More>  


Online Editorial - Proposed Phosphorus Bill Needs Further Amendment

State Sen. Andrew Roraback (R-30) has proposed a bill (SB-254) that aims to "curtail" the use of phosphorus on lawns in Connecticut. The stated reason for the ban is to reduce pollution in lakes and streams that can lead to eutrophication, depleted oxygen levels caused by an increase in phytoplankton.  This bill sounds like a great idea but it's incomplete. We applaud the senator's intent but the legislation, as presently constructed, is an overly simplified approach to a complicated problem. More> 


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Community Notices
Horticulture Internship
A part time position is available on a twelve-acre organic private property in southwestern Fairfield County, CT for an intern with an interest in organic gardening.  The position requires 16-24 hours per week. Weekends are not required. No housing is currently available. Medical insurance is not available. Remuneration is $15.00 - $20.00 per hour based on qualifications.
◄ Excellent recent references that indicate character, knowledge, and experience.
◄ Some hands on experience with greenhouses or gardening helpful.
◄ Knowledge of or willingness to learn botanical and common plant names.
◄ Interest and experience in cooking and canning a plus
◄ Ease with computer basics and a willingness to learn.
◄ Team-oriented.
◄ Must be able to lift 40 lbs.
◄ Valid driver's license and own transportation.
Please submit cover letter and resume in pdf or Word format here.

Project Native Seeks a Propagation Manager
The Project Native Propagation Manager is responsible for managing the seed bank and growing native plants for nursery stock and landscape restoration on our 54-acre farm in Housatonic, MA. The ideal candidate is an experienced grower with deep knowledge of native plants and their ecosystems, as well as being a personable communicator able to create educational programs, teach interns and volunteers, and lead farm tours.  This is a full-time salaried position with benefits.  Applicants please send an email including cover letter, resume and references to David Ellis, Operations Director by May 1.

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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. 


4/17/12 - A Natural History of Spring Wildflowers, Valhalla, NY
4/18/12 - Landscape Design Primer, Stamford, CT
4/20/12 - Edible Forest Garden Installation and Caretake, Rochester, NY
4/24/12 - Spring Tree Steward Course, North Providence, RI
4/28/12 - Composting: Easy, Cheap, Nutrient Rich, Brookline, MA.
4/28/12 - Low Maintenance Design with Native Plants, Whately, MA
4/28/12 - Designing on your Feet, Framingham, MA
4/28/12 - Introduction to Willow Identification, Framingham, MA
4/28/12 - Transplanting Shrubs and Planting Small Ornamental Trees, Stockbridge, MA
5/5/12 - Perennials for Long Season Interest, South Kingstown, RI
5/6/12 - Glorious World of Roses, South Kingstown, RI
5/12/12 - A Westford Oasis , Westford, MA
5/14/12 - Deer Resistant Gardening, Milford, CT
5/16/12 - Insect Laboratory Hands-on Identification and Management Strategies, Milford, MA
5/21/12 - Defining Gardens: A Global View, Wellesley, MA
5/24/12 - Identifying Freshwater Wetlands in the Landscape, Amherst, MA
5/30/12 - Native New England Shrubs, Framingham, MA
5/31/12 - What's in a name? Latin for Gardeners , Vernon, CT
5/31/12 - Identifying Freshwater Wetlands in the Landscape, Amherst, MA
6/5/12 - The Life of a Plant: An Introduction to Botany, Boothbay, ME
6/26/12 - Broadleaf Weed Identification Workshop, Jamaica Plain, MA
8/3/12 - Grassy Weed Identification Workshop: An In-Depth Look , Amherst, MA
8/14/12 - Invasive Plant Certification Program, Milford, MA.
8/14/12 - A Plant's Family Tree: Relationships within the Plant Kingdom, Boothbay, ME
9/12/12 - Invasive Plant Certification Program, Milford, MA.
9/27/12 - Horticultural Ecology, Boothbay, ME
10/12/12 - Invasive Plants: Issues, Identification, and Ecology, Boothbay, ME
12/31/13 - ONGOING - Natural Turf Pro DVD, Northeast


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NOFA Standards Review

Now that we're going outside more often and are working in our gardens, yards, and landscapes, we might be tempted to go a little overboard pruning our plants so they look just right.  This month's Standards Review reminds us that much of the work in maintaining good landscaping occurs during the months when we don't want to go outside, and in early spring we must be extra careful not to harm the plants we intend to keep looking beautiful.  The following excerpt on pruning comes from page 45 of the NOFA Standards for Organic Land Care.


"The optimum time to prune living wood is when the plant's energy reserves are high.  For most plants this is in late winter, before buds begin to swell.  If pruning is necessary during the growing season, wait at least two weeks after the leaves have matured to allow the plant to make and store energy.  When removing woody tissue, it is important to make a clean, smooth pruning cut in the proper location.  The swollen area where a branch is joined to the plant at a crotch is called the branch bark collar.  All pruning should be done just outside this collar, leaving a short stub.  Do not tip prune or "top" a plant.  This practice only leads to disfigurement and weak plants.  Much of the plant's energy for growth is stored in the tips and buds (symplast) and should be preserved as much as possible during pruning.  When size reduction is necessary, it is healthier for the plant to remove an entire branch back to the main trunk or leader (drop crotch pruning) than it is to prune back the tips."
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