First posted on 04-11-2014
Area gardeners and homeowners with lawn, tree, shrub, flower or garden questions can find answers by calling the Master Gardeners of Greene County Hotline.
Trained volunteers answer the Master Gardener Hotline from the University of Missouri Extension Center inside the Botanical Center at 2400 S. Scenic Ave., Springfield, Mo. 65807
Residents can call the Master Gardener hotline at (417) 881-8909 ext. 320 from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. every business day until October and on Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
The gardening hotline in Greene County began in 1982 and annually answers questions about gardening practices for over 2,000 callers.
“It is impossible for one person to handle all the phone calls received in the Greene County office pertaining to horticulture. However, through the Master Gardener Program, trained volunteers assist with many of the calls relating to home horticulture,” said Patrick Byers, horticulture specialist, University of Missouri Extension.
Questions that come into the hotline deal with flower and vegetable gardening, turf grass management, trees and shrubs, fruits, houseplants, landscape design, pest control and plant fertility management, gardening techniques and many more topics.
It is always helpful when a person brings in a sample branch, leaf or pest as part of the identification and diagnosis process.
If actual samples cannot be brought in then pictures can be helpful if they are close and provide detail of the problem. One suggestion is to place a ruler in the picture to provide a reference to size along with a photo showing a full view of the plant.
Master Gardeners of Greene County have other suggestions online to help make diagnosis easier. Check out the list of questions at http://mggreene.org/hotline/diagnosis-of-plant-problems. Some of the questions may lead to solutions, while others may help a caller convey important information to hotline volunteers.
Master Gardener hotlines are also available through the MU Extension centers in Christian, Taney, Stone and Jasper counties, but hours vary. Call your county extension center for more information.
The Master Gardener Program is a popular and successful statewide volunteer community-service organization administered through University of Missouri Extension.
The organization’s goal is to train gardeners who are willing to share their knowledge with others. Master Gardeners become volunteers of University of Missouri Extension and donate hours for community educational projects in horticulture.
For more information about the Master Gardeners of Greene County, visit http://mggreene.org
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