2014 New Call for Positions
2014 URS Call for Positions
This proposal has been formally submitted for the 2014 cycle.
019 Area Environmental Horticulture Advisor for Stanislaus & Merced Counties
Proposed Area of Coverage
Stanislaus & Merced Counties
- Roger Duncan - Main Contact
- Area Environmental Horticulture Advisor for Stanislaus & Merced Counties (docx), uploaded 05/06/2014 by Roger Duncan
As EH Advisor in San Joaquin County, I strongly support this position. These counties have no resource on the ground with expertise in the range of urban and ornamental horticulture issues that have emerged and are making such a broad impact on urban life. There is strong need for a Master Gardener program, and a city as large as Modesto, whose garden club boasts over 500 members, should not be without access to Extension's research-based information and direction for its gardening public, nursery crop growers, and landscape professionals.
I was a horticulture program representative in Stanislaus County from 2007-2009 and worked with former Advisor Ed Perry. After his retirement in 2010 (with 36 years of service) a huge gap was left for the office to fill. Weekly phone calls and walk-ins with questions from both the public and growers and landscape professionals have left the community frustrated about the lack of information available. This is a need that should be filled as soon as possible.
There is a real need for an Environmental Horticulture Advisor in Stanislaus and Merced Counties. The advisor would find an established base of support for EH research and education programs in the nursery, landscape and arboriculture industries. Willing cooperators exist in the nursery and green industries. Additionally, there is a constant need by the residents of both counties for reliable, research-based information relating to home food production and landscaping, pest management and school and community gardening. There is great community support for a Master Gardener Program in Stanislaus County, where a MG Program currently does not exist. The EH Advisor would provide the technical expertise and management needed to initiate and maintain a MG Program. An active MG Program exists in Merced County, and would greatly benefit from the area EH Advisor. I believe county government in both counties also support the Area EH Advisor position.
Stanislaus county has a very real need to replace the position of E.H. advisor with the retirement of Ed Perry. The need for the position has not lessened but has grown in demand. The county as progressive as Stanislaus county is doesn't have a Master Gardner program or a viable outreach source for both industry and the public. The E.H. advisor for horticulture is just as important to Stanislaus county as an Agronomy advisor is to the farming communities . If you were to look into the history of the position of E.H. Advisor and see the success that Ed Perry demonstrated , the interaction between the county, state and local people, proves the worth of that position. We here in Stanislaus county have been without a E.H. advisor for far to long.
The Stanislaus County Farm Bureau represents over 1,700 farm families and 3,400 members within the county. We ask the University of California to fill the position of Environmental Horticulture that UCCE has left vacant since the retirement of Ed Perry. Demand for the services of this adviser position have grown . Stanislaus County does not have a Master Gardner program or a viable outreach source for both industry and the public. We have seen an increase in the number of home and community gardens and the calls to us asking for guidance. We can only forward to UCCE where there is no one to help. The Stanislaus UCCE teaches our farmers and ranchers to move forward with progress and research. We hope that UCANR shares the same vision for our communities and farmers. We urge the university to strongly consider Stanislaus County for filling this position.
As County Director I have rated this position as our highest priority. We get calls daily for EH especially now with the drought. Stanislaus has one of the largest farm to school programs with gardens in almost every school and no Master Gardener Program to help with the trainings. We have an interest list of over 100 community members wanting to be trained. There are ample research opportunities for an Advisor from working within ANR and also our Parks and Rec Depts, numerous nurseries, and large Landscape Programs at both Modesto Jr College as well as Stanislaus State University. There may also be opportunities to develop programs with UC Merced.
I support the critical need for this and other EH advisor positions in California. Production horticulture needs the technical support of Extension services, particularly given current drought and economic pressures. The horticulture industry as a whole relies on an active Extension to provide applied research, objective guidance, and best management practices.
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