Digging the Dirt with UCCE Master Gardeners

I recently had the pleasure of attending Secrets of the Soil, a workshop, http://mgeldorado.ucanr.edu/Secrets_of_Soil/         with the likes of:

Chuck Ingels, Farm and Horticulture Advisor with UC Cooperative Extension in Sacramento County since 1996 and overseer of the Fair Oaks Horticulture Center.
His topic:            Physical Characteristics of Soil, Plant Roots and the Rhizosphere

Amanda Hodson, Ph.D in Entomology and U.C. Davis Project Scientist.
Her topic:           Soil Food Web, Defining Healthy Soil

 Rei Scampavia, doctorial candidate at UC Davis, researches nest site selection in bee species. https://diadasia.wordpress.com/. Her topic:  Ecosystem Services and Ground Nesting Bees

Their presentations are available on the .edu link above, as well as these presentations:

What is IPM?                   http://www2.ipm.ucanr.edu/WhatIsIPM/
Beneficial Predatores   http://ipm.ucanr.edu/QT/beneficialpredatorscard.html

Agricultural and Natural Resources   http://ipm.ucanr.edu/index.html

Also check out the .edu link above for resourceful links such as:


Yes, I am very impressed, inspired and encouraged with my re-acquaintance with Master Gardeners of El Dorado County. The workshop was more than terrific – I even came home with a worm composting bin for red wigglers!  The link below gives you step by step directions.  redwigglerwormcomposter







I got lots of my questions answered, and not all of them agreed with what else I’ve heard. Which gives credence to the words of Chuck Ingels when he tries to answer questions from the gardening community. “It depends,” he says. It depends on too many variables given the complexity of the world beneath, above, and around the soil.   There are millions of species, thousands of studies, and way too many possibilities for any given situation. I guess that’s why they offer so many classes. Hats off to Master Gardeners!