CT Green Industry

Online Course Catalog of Extension Programs

course catalog imageThere are more than one hundred UConn Extension specialists working throughout Connecticut. These educators are teaching and training in local communities, sharing their experience and knowledge with residents through a variety of programs. These instructional activities now will be easily accessible with the creation of an online extension course catalog.

Extension classes address a wide range of topics, including issues related to agriculture and food systems, the green industry, families and community development, land use and water, nutrition and wellness as well as numerous 4-H and youth activities. The website uses these groupings and an A to Z index so finding offerings is simple and straightforward. Each program links to a page with information on the objectives, goals, components, intended audience, the time of year and how often programs run and a link to the program’s website, that provides additional information.

As part of a nationwide network through the University of Connecticut College of Agriculture, Health and Natural Resources, Extension professionals and trained volunteers engage the state’s diverse population to make informed choices and better decisions. The partnerships enrich our lives and our environment.

View the course catalog online at http://s.uconn.edu/courses.

Biological Control Short Course Offered

people in field
Photo: Auerfarm

Xerces Society’s Conservation Biological Control Short Course

4-H Education Center at Auer Farm
158 Auer Farm Rd.
Bloomfield, CT

Tuesday, June 13th, 2017
9:00 am – 4:30 pm EDT

Learn a science-based strategy that seeks to integrate beneficial insects for natural pest control with instructor Dr. Ana Legrand from UConn!

To register and read course agenda follow this link: http://s.uconn.edu/3mt

Municipal Grounds and Sports Turf Academy

Steve turf talk
Photo: UConn CAHNR

Municipal Grounds and Sports Turf Academy

March 14 & 15, 2017, 8 am-4 pm
W.B. Young Building, 1376 Storrs Road, Room 100
University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT

The registration fee is $180.00.
$20 discount ($160 per person) for groups of 3 or more. Student registration is $25.
Walk-in registrations are welcome, but must be paid by cash or check.
Registration fee includes refreshments, lunch, and an information packet.

Pesticide Recertification Credits – 7 Credits/Categories 3A, 3B, & PA

Program and registration information.
Register online. (Online registration closes at 11:59 p.m. on March 12.)
Or send in a Mail-in registration form.

Questions? Contact: Vickie Wallace, victoria.wallace@uconn.edu(860) 885-2826

It’s Not Too Late for the Spring Bedding Plant Meetings

Rosa Raudales in greenhouse
Photo: Kara Bonsack

You can Register for the Spring Bedding Plant Meetings:  

By  Email: Leanne Pundt, at leanne.pundt@uconn.edu  or call 860-921-3288

You can pay at the door (cash or check), however, please pre-register by phone or email by

Feb 13 for Feb 16 meeting at the Tolland County Extension Center

Feb 14 for Feb 21 meeting at the Litchfield County Extension Center

You must pre-register to be guaranteed a catered lunch.


Bedding Plants – Spring 2017!

Spring Bedding Plant Meeting

Tolland County Extension Center Vernon, CT

Feb 16, 2017  

Time  Title  Speaker 
9:30 – 10:00 Registration  
10:00 – 11:00 Using Controlled Release Fertilizers in Containers Rosa Raudales, UConn
11:00-12:00 KEEP IT SIMPLE:  Choosing the right media and fertility program for your crops Dan Jacques, Sun Gro Horticulture
12:00 – 12:30 Lunch (catered)  
12:30 – 1:30 Mistaken Identities: Tips on Scouting Leanne Pundt, UConn
1:30 – 2:30 Management of Diseases on Edibles in the Greenhouse Angela Madeiras, UMass


Spring Bedding Plant Meeting

Litchfield County Extension Center, Torrington, CT

Feb 21, 2017 

Time  Title  Speaker 
9:30 – 10:00 Registration  
10:00 – 11:00 Using Controlled Release Fertilizers in Containers Rosa Raudales, UConn
11:00 – 12:00 KEEP IT SIMPLE:  Choosing the right media and fertility program for your crops Dan Jacques, Sun Gro Horticulture
12:00 – 12:30 Lunch (catered)  
12:30 – 1:00 Worker Protection Standard: Overview of What’s New


Candace Bartholomew, UConn
1:00- 2:00 Mistaken Identities: Tips on Scouting Leanne Pundt, UConn
2:00- 2:30 Hot Topics in Pest Control Leanne Pundt, UConn


Four pesticide recertification credits!     


Directions to Programs: 

February 16th, Tolland County Extension Center: Take Exit 67 off I-84. Take Route 31 North to the junction of Route 30. Turn right onto Route 30. Tolland County Extension Center is on the right just after Rockville Bank at 24 Hyde Avenue.  You can link to a map at: http://www.extension.uconn.edu/extension-centers/tolland.php  or call 860-875-3331

February 21st, Litchfield County Extension Center:  From Route 8 North, take exit 44, go straight at first traffic light, go left at second traffic light onto Route 4 and proceed 2.75 miles, turn right onto University Drive and proceed 1 mile to Litchfield County Extension Center. You can link to a map at:http://www.extension.uconn.edu/extension-centers/litchfield.php or call 860-626-6240


Registration Form – Bedding Plants – Spring 2017





Email address____________________________Phone:________________________________

(Required for confirmation of registration)                                  (Required)

No. attending ___________x $25.00/person = $____ at Tolland CES     ____ (please check) on Feb 16 th

at Litchfield CES ____ (please check) on Feb 21st Please make checks payable to University of Connecticut. Return this form and check to Leanne Pundt, Litchfield County Extension Center, 843 University Drive, Torrington, CT 06790-2635.

Included in your registration fee of $25.00:  Handouts, Catered Lunch Beverages.

For more information contact: 

Leanne Pundt, UConn Extension, 860-626-6855, leanne.pundt@uconn.edu

An equal opportunity employer and program provider. To file a complaint of discrimination, write USDA, Director, Office of Civil Rights, Room 326W, Whitten Building, Stop code 9410, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW, Washington, DC 20250-9410or call (202) 720-5964. If requested by a program participant at least 3 weeks in advance, every effort will be made to provide special accommodation.

Summer 2017 Internships

Tom Martella
Tom Martella. Photo: Juliana Barrett.

UConn Extension is pleased to offer internships for UConn undergraduate students again this year. Student interns gain valuable in-the-field experience in your chosen discipline at an in-state Extension office location. Internship opportunities include:
• Food    • Nutrition    • Health    • Sustainability   • Research
• Agribusiness   • Youth Education    • Community Development

For more information visit: http://s.uconn.edu/interns

Hydroponics at UConn Extension

hydroponicsHydroponics is a growing area of agriculture that uses mineral nutrient solutions in a soilless system to grow plants. Rosa researches chemistry and water clogging of hydroponics in her greenhouse. “With the CARE project, a set of growers in Connecticut have problems with low quality water clogging systems,” Extension educator Rosa Raudales mentions. “Samples are being collected to see if we can find the parameters causing clogging.” Research being done will determine if the same water can be used without clogging the irrigation system. Growers in Maine, Rhode Island, New York, and Connecticut are being surveyed for the project. Hydroponics usually starts with really clean water, and tying back to her other projects, Rosa hypothesizes that when using reclaimed water; there will be potential clogging challenges which tends to be a costly problem to farmers. Another project researches using bio-controls in hydroponic systems to make water less conducive for pathogens, while increasing beneficial microbes in the water. Rosa is looking at adjustments to nutrients and temperature that will make the water less conducive to pathogens. This joint project with Dr. Wade Elmer at the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station is funded through the Connecticut Department of Agriculture Specialty Crop Block Grant Program.

New England Greenhouse Floriculture Guide 2017-2018

greenhouse guide

–  300+ pages of current recommendations for nonchemical and chemical management of greenhouse insects, mites, diseases, weeds and algae, plus recommendations for using plant growth regulators

–  Guidelines specific to New England, in a durable plastic comb binding

–  Extensive, practical information about using biocontrol organisms to manage insects and mites

– Information about how to use pesticides safely and effectively, how to mitigate development of pesticide resistance, and how to protect bees and other pollinators

–  Detailed first aid guidelines for pesticide accidents

– Basic guidelines for pest management

–  Lists of additional resources

To Order Online: Visit www.negreenhouse.org

To Order by Mail: Complete the Information Below

1-Make a check payable ($40 per copy) to:             New England Floriculture, Inc.

($40 includes postage and handling)


2-Complete the information below, and                 Delaney Meeting and Event Management

send this form and your check to:                         One Mill Street, #315

Burlington, Vermont 05401


Please send me                 copies of the 2017-2018 Floriculture Guide. Enclosed is a check for $                                 

Your name (please print):                                                   

Your street address/PO box:                                                       

Your city/state/zip:                        


Giving Tuesday

Extension word markWith the end of year and holidays approaching, consider making your gift to UConn Extension. Here are ways you can show your support:

Make a Gift Online

You can make a gift online by accessing the UConn Extension Online Giving Page:


There are three UConn Extension Foundation accounts featured on the site:

  • The Cooperative Extension Anniversary Fund (non-endowed, account # 23078)
  • The Nancy H. and David E. Bull CES Innovative Programming Fund (endowed, account # 31108)
  • 4-H Centennial Fund (endowed, account # 30978)

Text Your Support

Text 50555 the following: “UConn Extension (your name).” A $10 donation will then be made to the mGive Foundation to support the UConn Foundation. Charges will appear on your wireless bill.

Mail a Check

Please send your check to the following address, made payable to the University of Connecticut Foundation, Inc. Please include a note indicating the account name and number that you would like your donation to go to.

The UConn Foundation, Inc.

2390 Alumni Drive, Unit 3206

Storrs, CT 06269-3206


Payroll Deductions

UConn faculty and staff can opt into a payroll deduction of $1 or more per pay period and designated to the fund of their choosing. Deductions can end at a set date or until a giving goal is reached. Download a pledge form to participate http://www.foundation.uconn.edu/send-your-gift

Become a First Detector

late blight
Late blight. Photo: Joan Allen

By Joan Allen

The National Plant Diagnostic Network (NPDN) was formed along with the National Animal Health Laboratory Network (NAHLN) in 2002.

The mission of the NPDN is to enhance national agricultural security by quickly detecting and identifying introduced pests and pathogens.

This is accomplished through the creation of a nationwide network of diagnostic laboratories at land-grant universities (UConn in Connecticut) and state agriculture departments, training for diagnosticians and First Detectors, and the establishment of pro- cedures to be followed when a suspected exotic introduction is discovered.

Introduction of a damaging exotic pest or pathogen can be either acciden- tal (such as the Asian Longhorned Beetle [ALB] or the Emerald Ash Borer [EAB]) or intentional (such as an act
of bioterrorism).

Who can be a First Detector? Anyone who spends time with plants and would like to learn how they can help protect them from exotic pests and pathogens. The group includes professionals that work with plants in areas such as re- search, extension, agriculture, forestry, landscaping and the green industry.

But professionals aren’t the only ones who can play an important role in the early detection of an introduced pest or pathogen that has the potential to cause significant and damaging impact. Gar- deners, hikers, campers and anyone who spends time enjoying the outdoors all make great First Detectors.

By becoming familiar with the common plant pests and problems in your area, you can learn to recognize some- thing unusual and follow the established protocol to have it identified and, if needed, acted upon.

Free training is available online at https://firstdetector.org or by attending a local in-person training session. In-person training sessions can be organized for groups at no cost by contacting joan.allen@uconn.edu

The online training consists of six modules that can be completed one at a time at your convenience. Module topics include Mission of the NPDN, Monitoring for High Risk Pests, Diagnosing Plant Problems, Submitting Diagnostic Samples, Photography for Diagnosis and Disease & Pest Scenarios.

Each module is followed by a short quiz. Once all six are successfully completed, you will be a certified First Detector and can download your certificate.

The training includes information on what to do and who to contact if you come across an unusual pest, pathogen or plant. Certified First Detectors become part of a national network and may receive email communications including alerts about pests and pathogens that are a threat to plants in their area along with an electronic newsletter.

Water Solutions

Rosa Raudales in greenhouse
Photo: Kara Bonsack

Irrigation and plant pathogens, or infectious organisms, in water are recurring themes for Rosa Raudales, an Assistant Professor of Horticulture and Greenhouse Extension Specialist. Rosa’s first job was on a plantain irrigation project in Honduras. As an undergraduate, her thesis focused on pathogens in hydroponic systems, where plants are grown in a soilless system. Rosa researched biological controls, water treatments, and plant pathogen controls during her graduate studies.

At UConn, Rosa builds off the foundation she created; with applied research focusing on using low-quality water for irrigation, and developing management strategies to control microbes and unwanted chemicals in irrigation water. A holistic, multidisciplinary approach addressing biological, chemical and physical parameters of water quality is developed for each project. Rosa then delivers science-based information to growers, solving plant health and horticulture issues with efficient and sustainable practices.

An integrated research team from the College of Agriculture, Health and Natural Resources (CAHNR) is partnering with faculty from the School of Engineering on a project called Smart-Resource Grids: Exploring Technical Solutions to Grand Challenges at the Water-Energy-Food Nexus. The project is funded through the UConn Office of the Provost.

Richard McAvoy, Department Head of Plant Science and Landscape Architecture is project director. Rosa is one of 14 faculty members on the project, and water thrust co-leader with Tim Vadas from the School of Engineering. By building a smart-resource micro grid on the Storrs campus, researchers can study how water, food, and energy relate to one another and find synergistic relationships.

The UConn grant funds are developing infrastructure that demonstrates how wastewater can sustain agriculture. Reclaimed water will be used for irrigation and bio-solids from the wastewater will be used to produce energy. A gasifier owned by the School of Engineering will generate energy from the bio-solids in the form of natural gas. The gas can then be used to generate heat or electricity for use in the greenhouse, or the energy can be used someplace else where demand is needed on the grid.

Connecticut regulations indicate that reclaimed water cannot touch the soil. Greenhouses can have closed-loop irrigation systems, which have zero runoff. Using reclaimed water conserves resources and allows treated water to serve a purpose.

“The broader application is in becoming more efficient on how we utilize resources,” Rosa says. “Using what is considered waste in other industries, as an agricultural input, puts less pressure on natural resources. We will also produce energy from solid-waste. Our team added the food component with the idea of designing the integrated cities of the future, where nothing is wasted. The project will give cities that already treat wastewater an option on how to use it safely, while growing food locally.”

Space and resources are limited in many areas, including food deserts, but there is often a water treatment facility. Food could be grown in these areas using technology and efficiencies developed by the UConn team. Economists on the project are researching feasibility and practical application.

“My role on this project is to evaluate how to grow crops effectively by balancing nutrition and preventing biofouling on the pipes,” Rosa mentions. “The outreach component consists on understanding how to facilitate adoption of our system and developing a system that is feasible for cities to integrate.”

The USDA Critical Agricultural Research and Extension (CARE) Project is a $200,000 grant. Rosa is collaborating with Jeff McCutcheon from the School of Engineering, and Richard McAvoy and Michael O’Neill of CAHNR. The project looks at why horticultural farms are not using low quality water sources, and barriers for adoption (sidebar, at right).

Water quantity is a national priority. The Agricultural Water Security grant is co-sponsored by the Connecticut Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) through the Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP) and UConn Extension. Rosa collaborates with Michael O’Neill, Michael Dietz, and Angie Murdukhayeva of UConn Extension. Associate Dean Michael O’Neill is project director.

The RCPP project will identify how much water agriculture uses, and risks of different operations in the event of severe drought. During the first phase, the team is looking at how water is being used at operations. The second phase will develop drought management plans for different types of operations through technical support and financial assistance.

Rosa is applying for more grants to build off her current research. One thing is certain, as she continues to tie research to real life, the questions related to food, security, water conservation, and energy resources will be answered.