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Join in with other garden lovers!

Two virtual half days: Tuesday, April 27, and Wednesday, April 28, 2021.
Open to the public via Zoom. Registered participants will receive a flash-drive containing all resources mentioned during the conference upon completing an evaluation after the meeting.


In order to make this meeting accessible to as many people as possible, we invite participants to pay what they can afford:
$10 (a subsidized rate)
$15 (covers the cost of the meeting)
$20 (supports others who wish to attend)
If the subsidized rate poses a barrier to your attendance, please contact Debra Marvin at All registrants who complete an evaluation after the meeting will be mailed a flash drive with all meeting resources.


Registration for those who wish to pay with a credit card.
Registration for those who wish to pay by check.

Please register by April 21 for the best chance of getting your preferred lunch chat topic on Tuesday (see agenda below).


Tuesday, April 27: Sign-in begins at 8:30-9. First topic at 9. Later, at 11:45, participate in our virtual lunch table chats on your favorite topics.
Wednesday, April 28: 9—11:45


Morning 1  Tuesday, April 27
8:30 Gather that morning beverage, get comfortable, and join in for a morning filled with information to fuel this year’s dreams of growing your own vegetables.
8:50 Welcome and Introductory Remarks from Cornell Cooperative Extension and the New York State Integrated Pest Management Program – Christopher Watkins, Professor, School of Integrative Plant Science Horticulture Section and Director of Cornell Cooperative Extension
9:00 Keynote: Plant Health and IPM: Creating a Lens for Good Horticulture – Don Gabel, Director of Plant Health, The New York Botanical Garden
9:30-9:55 IPM and Organic: What do They Mean for Home Gardeners? - Abby Seaman, Vegetable IPM Coordinator, NYSIPM Program
10:00-10:05 What's Bugging You & Don't Get Ticked, New York: Resources from NYSIPM - Joellen Lampman, School and Turfgrass IPM Extension Support Specialist, NYSIPM Program
10:05-10:10 Gardening Through the Seasons - Jennie Cramer, Horticulture Program Manager, CCE Tompkins County
10:15-10:40 Setting Up the Garden (Planning for Success) - Steve Reiners, Professor and Horticulture Section Chair, School of Integrative Plant Science Horticulture Section Cornell AgriTech
10:40-10:50 Break; Get up and stretch if you haven’t already
10:50-11:15 From the Ground Up – Soil is Key (Test? Amend?) - Joseph Heller, Urban Conservationist, USDA
11:20-11:25 Composting – Adam Michaelides, Compost Educator, CCE Tompkins County
11:30-11:55 Choosing Resistant Varieties, Seed Starting, Buying Transplants - Sharon Bachman, Agriculture & Natural Resources Educator, CCE Erie County
12:05-12:35 Lunch Chats: Join others for an informal chat, question and answer session over ‘virtual’ lunch tables. Limited seating per breakout room. Registered attendees will receive an email the week before the conference to choose their preferred topics, first-come…first served. Topics hosted and monitored by Guest Speakers, Cornell Cooperative Extension and New York State Integrated Pest Management Staff.
Morning 2  April 28th
8:30 Settle in for today’s great topics
8:50 Welcome from Cornell Cooperative Extension and the NYS Integrated Pest Management Program – Alejandro Calixto, Director, New York State Integrated Pest Management Program
9:00-9:25 Scouting, Monitoring- How to ID Insect and Disease Pests - Marion Zuefle, Vegetable Educator NYSIPM Program
9:30-9:55 Watering, Weather, Irrigation and Weather Stations - Dan Olmstead, NEWA Coordinator (Network for Environment and Weather Applications), NYSIPM Program
10:00-10:05 Cornell Garden-based Learning: Using Cornell Cooperative Extension’s Online Resources - Ashley Helmholdt, Extension Associate, School of Integrative Plant Science Horticulture Section
10:05-10:10 Permaculture Design Resources - Ashley Helmholdt, Extension Associate, School of Integrative Plant Science Horticulture Section
10:15-10:40 Weeding Smarter, Not Harder - Bryan Brown, Integrated Weed Management Specialist, NYSIPM Program
10:40-10:50 Break
10: 50-11:15 Beneficial Bug Basics - Amara Dunn, Biocontrol Specialist, NYSIPM Program
11:20-11:25 Paying for Home Garden installations? - Leigh McGonagle, CNLP / Owner & Designer  at Poplar Point Studio
11:30-11:55 Non-Traditional Gardening: Urban Settings, Imported Soils, and Container Options - Yolanda Gonzalez, Urban Agriculture Specialist  CCE Harvest New York
12:00 Thank you for your attendance: We'll follow up with an online survey. Please complete the emailed survey so we can mail your flash drive full of the great information and links provided by the conference!