2013 Upcoming Events


NEW Organic Lawn Care Certificate Course    

  • February 26: Three Rivers Community College, Norwich, CT
  • March 19: Audubon Society, Greenwich, CT   
This course gives an introduction to organic lawn care and is only recommended for AOLCPs without experience with turf. The course will begin with two hours of environmental education co-taught by Judy Preston and Diba Khan-Bureau so you can learn about the state of water quality in your area, and how pesticides and excess fertilizers runoff into fresh  and salt water creating algae blooms and pollution harmful to animal life.  Chip Osborne will discuss soil testing to reduce excess nutrients, lawn cultural practices, addressing insects, weeds and diseases. Frank Crandall will teach marketing organic lawn care to customers. 


Learn more about the LISFF grant and our Lawn Certificate Course here. Sign up for the NOFA Organic Lawn Care Certificate Course here.


CT NOFA 31 Annual Winter Conference  

Saturday, March 2, 2013 

Wilton High School

395 Danbury Road

Wilton, CT
8:30 am to 5:00 pm

Growing Together Since 1982!

The 2013 Winter Conference's theme is adjusting to climate change on the farm, in the garden, and at home. To discuss climate resilient farming and land management, the keynote speaker is David W. Wolfe Ph.D., the Faculty Fellow and Chair of the Climate Change Focus Group, Atkinson Center for a Sustainable Future and Professor of Plant and Soil Ecology, Department of Horticulture at Cornell University.

AOLCPs will receive 4 credits for attending the Keynote address and 1 AOLCP track workshop during each of the three sessions at the conference. The Organic Land Care Track will include multiple workshops in each timeslot (the titles will be up soon!) There will be sign-in sheets in each of the rooms of workshops; you will have to sign your name to receive credit! View the full workshop list here. Learn more and register for the Conference here.


Check out this recent NY Times article featuring one of the workshop presenters!  


Attention Fairfield County AOLCPs: consider advertising or becoming a sponsor for the Winter Conference to get your business added exposure to sustainably minded people in your area. This conference attracts hundreds of people interested in organic food and land care, and is a great way to reach a targeted audience with your advertisement. Learn more about advertising here and about sponsorship here.  


Safe Parks and Playing Fields 
An Introduction to Reducing Turf Care Chemicals in Your Town
March 21, 2013
Holiday Inn, 2280 Brown Ave., Manchester, NH
8:30 am - 2:15 pm
$65 NOFA-NH Members and AOLCP's/ $75 non members
Healthy lunch included
AOLCP and NHCLP credits available; Pesticide Credits Pending
Join several local and nationally known organic turf care experts for a simplified, yet scientific, approach to beginning the process of transitioning from conventional to organic turf care. To learn more, contact the NOFA-NH office (603) 224-5022 or register on line here.

 back to top 

Advertise in the CT NOFA Farm and Food Guide 


Boost your exposure to potential clients by advertising in the CT NOFA Farm and Food Guide. The Guide is put together in March, so reserve your ad space now. Each year CT NOFA prints and hands out 10,000 copies of the Guide. The events where copies are distributed attract consumers with specific interests in organic living, including landscaping and lawn care. Advertising in the Guide grants organic land care professionals with access to a large pool of organically minded potential clients in Connecticut and the surrounding region. 

Do you live and work outside of Connecticut? There are some other ways you can advertise in NOFA chapter publications, and in MOFGA and PASA, that were talked about in the November edition of this newsletter.  You can access that edition here.

 back to top 

Don't forget to Reaccredit for 2013! 


Although a late fee ($25) is now in effect, you can still reaccredit for 2013. Follow these steps to reaccredit:

  1. Make sure you have obtained at least 4 continuing education credits.  You must have 4 in order to stay accredited in 2013.  Not sure how many credits you have?  Call us at 203.888.5146 or email us to find out.  If you've attended events or taught classes in 2012 that are at least partially dedicated to organic land care, you can apply for credits. Apply for credits online here.
  2. Choose either the $75 Supporter or the $150 Business Tier for your reaccreditation.  You can view the benefits of each tier here.
  3. Officially reaccredit.  Online reaccreditation is fast and easy - click here for the form. You can pay for your reaccreditation over the phone, online, or by mailing us a check.

Questions?  Call us at 203.888.5146 or email us for more information.

 back to top 

Our New England Regional Accreditation Course 


The 12th Annual Accreditation Course was held at Three Rivers Community College in Norwich, CT last week.  Over sixty land care professionals attended from Connecticut, Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and one woman from Wisconsin.  Despite the blizzard, the course was able to be re-scheduled for Tuesday through Friday. 

Students were pleased with the facilities and the teachers. Many frequent presenters were there, including Michael Nadeau, Kim Stoner, Chip Osborne, Heather Crawford, Todd Harrington, Paul Wagner, and Kirby Stafford.  We were happy to run the 4-day new curriculum with the new 2 track focus; students select either turf or organic landscaping.  Chip taught four hours of turf specifics. Lisa and Kyle Turoczi presented about Native Plants.  Teresa Mucci, AOLCP and CT NOFA Winter Conference Coordinator, taught on Permaculture and Meadows. Karen Bussolini presented "Integrating Edibles into the Garden" with her lovely photographs. 

Thank you to Three Rivers Community College, for their support and excellent coordination!  The Sustainable Landscape  Ecology Program now offers their students the ability to test and become NOFA Accredited, with their one year certificate course.

 back to top 

AOLCP Marketing


We are redesigning our online searchable database of AOLCPs to make it more streamlined and user-friendly!  Not only will this help to gain those with listings more business, but it also opens up a new opportunity to advertise yourself on the website. Below are the rates for advertising on both the website and in our eNewsletters.

Additionally, if you're an AOLCP Business Member who is taking advantage of the print and web ad templates we sent out recently, we can inexpensively customize your ad more extensively than what's included with your business member dues. The ad below is an example of what can be done with the $35 minimum fee.  AOLCP Monique Allen wanted to insert her own background imagery into her chosen templates, which really helped to make her ads fit her business and target audience.  Contact Melissa if you'd like to learn more about this service.

 back to top 

From Our Blog


The NOFA Organic Land Care blog is another way to stay up to date with current events in the organic landscaping arena. With an expanding topic list due to guest blogger input, our blog is even better than ever!  


Pesticide Regulation in the News: New Legislation Could Harm Our Waterways 

One of the main principles of organic land care is to reduce the use of synthetic pesticides and fertilizers. There are many reasons for this principle, one being to reduce the pollution of our waterways. More>  


Guest blogger Bernadette Giblin 

I'm back from having a great time participating in the first NOFA Organic Land Care Accreditation Course of 2013!  The January 14th-17th course held in Philadelphia, PA was not only the season opener but, it was also the first time the course was on the road in Pennsylvania. More>   


Love our blog?  Want a chance to get more involved?   

We are now accepting guest articles to feature on the NOFA Organic land Care Program blog. If you have expertise and passion for organic land care issues, and experience with writing either on a blog or in another journalistic outlet, you can become a guest blogger for NOFA OLC! Interested? Send us an email detailing your relevant experience with writing and sustainable land care and, if our needs match, we'll set you up as either a one-time blogger, or a scheduled guest writer.  



 back to top 

In The News


Inviting the Garden in For the Winter, Featuring an AOLCP! 

Tovah Martin can't live without plants, so in the winter, she makes her garden indoors. Even when it falls to zero outside, as it did last week, there is a forest of pale green ornamental kale flowering in the east window. And the fern in her bedroom window upstairs has vigorous green fronds, loaded with spores. Meet Polypodium formosanum, the grub fern. More>  


Controlling Japanese Barberry Helps Stop Spread of Tick-Borne Diseases

A nature-themed drama is unfolding in a corner of the UConn Forest in Storrs. The story contains elements of surprise as well as a glimpse of the region's agrarian past. The protagonist in the drama is the invasive Japanese Barberry (Berberis thunbergii), and Tom Worthley, assistant extension professor in the Department of Extension in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, provides a couple of interesting twists in the plot as he explains why eliminating the pest will also help control the spread of the tick-borne diseases of Lyme, granulocytic anaplasmosis, and babesiosis. More>   

 back to top 

Invite pollinators to your neighborhood by planting a pollinator friendly habitat in your garden, farm, school, park or just about anywhere! Starting on Page 16 of the planting guides you can find lists of plant names that will attract pollinators and help you build beautiful pollinator habitat! Learn more here.


Landscape Plants Rated by Deer Resistance 

Rutgers has created a guide to plants damaged by deer, and rates plants based on their likelihood to become damaged in areas with high deer density. Check out the guide here.    


Database of Common Landscape and Garden Pests 

This listing includes basic descriptive information, photographs, and control methods for dealing with a wide variety of insect pests. Check it out here.  


Philadelphia Flower Show  

March 2-10, 2013 

Pennsylvania Convention Center

The 2013 Flower Show glows with the majestic beauty and creative genius of Great Britain, and is inspired by centuries of British culture, culminating in the urbane design of modern-day London. NOFA members and AOLCPs save $2 on tickets to the show! Use promo code NOFA2013 when printing your ticket. Learn more here


Presentation by AOLCP Camilla Worden, of Camilla Landscape Design

"Landscaping for a Sustainable Environment"  

March 14, 2013, 11am 

Roxbury-Bridgewater Garden Club, St. Mark's Church Hall 

Ms. Worden, a Master Gardener and AOLCP, holds a certificate in landscape design from the New York Botanical Garden. Her recent accomplishments include an award-winning ecological redesign of a corporate park in Purchase, NY and a lakeside buffer planting for the Lake Kenosia Commission in Danbury. With 20-25 years experience in design and maintenance of CT and Western NY properties, Ms. Worden's program will highlight environmentally sound practices for residential and commercial properties. The public is invited. Please call Ann Tymon at 860-354-5575 for more information.  


         back to top 

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.      


2/27/13 - ELA Conference - Springfield, MA
2/28/13 - ELA Conference - Springfield, MA
3/1/13 - NOFA NH Winter Conference
3/2/13 - CT NOFA Winter Conference
3/2/13 - PHS Flower Show
3/4/13 - What is Permaculture?, Concord, NH
3/9/13 - Bionutrient Rich Crop Production - Session 1
3/21/13 - Safe Parks and Playing Fields: An Introduction to Reducing Turf Care Chemicals in your Town
4/22/13 - Healthy Soils: The Economics of Healthy Soils and Cover Crops
12/31/13 - ONGOING - Natural Turf Pro DVD, Northeast

                                                                                                                   back to top 

NOFA Standards Review

As an addendum to last month's pruning review, this month will review the preferred practices for pruning, in preparation for the late winter and early spring. The following excerpt on pruning can be found on page 45 of the NOFA Standards for Organic Land Care.

  • Removing deadwood, diseased wood, and crossing and intersecting wood as soon as it is noticed
  • Pruning living tissue when energy reserves are high
  • Corrective pruning for mechanical stability done when plants are young and wood is less than 3 inches in diameter
  • Using drop crotch pruning methods
  • For size reduction, removing no more than one-third of the branches back to the trunk or main leader over a period of several seasons
  • Pruning at the proper time to ensure proper bud formation
  • Rejuvenating a multi-stemmed plant by removing one-third of the oldest wood to the ground over a 3-year period
  • Disinfecting pruning tools after their use on diseased wood, or removing diseased wood during the dormant season (see Diseases, page 54, for ways of disinfecting tools)
  • Disposing of pruning debris by composting on site

back to top