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Water Quality 2013
Advanced MGs
Master Gardeners


Advanced Master Gardener: Water

Training at MG College 2013

The Advanced Master Gardener Water Quality Training will be offered in conjunction with Master Gardener College 2013.  This training is intended to help Units that cannot muster enough participants or instructors to host the training in their home unit.  Core training in both technical areas and in programming will be offered at MG College, but the trainees will be expected to return to their units, and work closely with their Agent and/or Unit Coordinator to complete the exercises required to become an Advanced Master Gardener.

Learn more about Advanced Master Gardener: Water on the Stewards Page.


  •  Must be a Master Gardener.  This training is not open to Master Gardener Trainees nor interns.  All participants must have    completed all of the requirements to become a Master Gardener prior to commencing this Advanced Master Gardener Training.
  •  Must have the express permission of their local Agent and/or Unit Coordinator.
  •  Must pay an additional fee for the additional instruction, and the Handbook

Course of Study:

 Candidates will take a prescribed course of study offered at MG College.  In addition to the Advanced Master Gardener Technical Training offered Wednesday all day, and Thursday in the morning, Advanced Master Gardener Water Quality will participate in a Special Learning Experience on Thursday afternoon (i.e. do not register for any other tours!).  All participants will take all of the following courses.

How to register:


The curriculum will include the following subject areas:

  • Unit 1 Introduction to Advanced Master Gardener – Water Steward
    • Groundwater Basics
    • Non-Point Source Pollution
    • Introduction to Advanced Master Gardeners
  • Unit 2 Understanding Plant-Soil-Water Relationships 
    • Effects of Soils on Water Quality
    • Erosion & Runoff Techniques for reducing Negative Soil Impacts on Water Quality
  • Unit 3 Protecting Water Quality through Better Turf Management
    • Best Management Practices for Lawns and Turf
  • Unit 4 Protecting Water Quality with Landscape Design
    • Landscape Design and Use to Protect Water Quality
    • Yardwaste Management
  • Unit 5 Protecting Water Quality through Better Irrigation Practices
    • Importance of Irrigation Practices to Water Quality
    • Better Irrigation Practices
  • Unit 6 Pesticide Management 
    • Pesticides and How They Affect Water Quality
    • Proper Pesticide Use Pesticide Alternatives
  • Unit 7 Nutrient Management
    • Nutrients and Water Quality
    • Understanding Nitrogen Nutrient Management Techniques
    • Fertigation Techniques
  • Unit 8 Septic System Management
    • Septic Systems and
    • Maintenance of Well Sites
  • Unit 9 Low Impact Development (LID)
    • Principles of LID
    • Rain harvesting techniques
    • Rain Gardens
  • Unit 9 – Extension Programming
  • Unit 10 Presentation and final plan – required after class work and additional Service Projects

Schedule of Classes


Wednesday June 19, 2013



9:00 – 9:30 


Torgersen Hall room 1030

Frank Reilly, Senior Consultant and Research Associate, LMI, and Advanced MG Training Coordinator

Introduction to the Advanced Master Gardener: Water Quality Program

9:30 – 12:00

Torgersen Hall room 1030

Frank Reilly

Survey of Water Quality Principles

1:00 – 2:00

Torgersen Hall room 1030

Erin James Ling, Water Quality Extension Associate, VA Tech, Biological Systems Engineering

Well- Safety and Drinking water awareness

2:00 – 2:45

Torgersen Hall room 1030

Brian L Benham, Associate Professor and Extension Specialist, VA Tech, Biological Systems Engineering

Septic systems and private sewage treatment

  Advanced Master Gardener Tune-up


All Water Stewards are welcome to this session

3:15 – 4:00

Torgersen Hall room 1030

Frank Reilly and

Chantel Wilson, M.S., Graduate Research Assistant, Ph.D. Student, Virginia Tech Turfgrass Culture & Physiology, VA Tech, Crop & Soil Environmental Sciences Dept

Special Update for Water Stewards - All Water Stewards are welcome

What you grow and how you grow it can have a big impact of water quality.  A little about current research, and about TMDLs

4:00 – 5:00

Torgersen Hall room 1030

Advanced Master Gardeners


Updates, What works, what doesn't.

Virginia Beach

Peninsula Master Gardeners

Northern Neck Master Gardeners



Thursday June 20, 2013



9:00 – 10:15

Torgersen Hall room 1030

Pat Reilly, Neighborhood Services Division Chief, Prince William County Dept. of Public Works and Past MG Coordinator for Prince William County

Programming Tools and Techniques: Making your Advanced Master Gardener Program Work

10:30 –  12:00

Torgersen Hall room 1030

Pat Reilly

Making your Advanced Master Gardening Program Work.

1:00 – 5:00

Bus departure site will be announced

Blacksburg, VA 24060

Kim Steika, Landscape Architecture Project Coordinator, VA Tech, Community Design Assistance Center


Presenters: John Boyer, Assistant Director of Public Works, Field Operations, City of Blacksburg, VA and Kafi Howard


Presenters: Kafi Howard,  Stormwater Engineer, City of Blacksburg, VA


Presenter: Matt Gart, Landscape Architect, Virginia Tech Office of University Planning - Architecture


Presenter: Tess Wynn Thompson, Associate Professor and the Assistant Department Head for Undergraduate Studies, in Biological Systems Engineering, Virginia Tech


Presenter: Susan Day Assistant Professor
Forest Research & Environmental Conservation at Virginia Tech.

Water Stewards Tour of Blacksburg and VA Tech - Buses will leave after lunch is served. from the parking lot near D-2 dining hall. 

NOTE: this tour will roll rain or shine, dress for the weather.

*Stop 1 (1:00 to 1:30pm): College Avenue Bioswale (Silva cell, biorentetion)



*Stop 2: (1:45 to 2:10pm) Porous pavement examples (Blacksburg Motor Company)


*Stop 3: (2:30 to 3:00pm) Alumni Inn Retention Pond




*Stop 4: (3:15 to 3:45pm) Stroubles Creek Restoration



*Stop 5: Green Roof (4:15 to 4:45pm)

Friday June 21, 2013



8:30 – 9:00

Torgersen Hall room 2150

Dr. Jones, Associate Dean and Director of Extension, CALS, Virginia Tech

Dr. J. Roger Harris, Professor and Department Head Horticulture Department, Virginia Tech

Dr. Joyce Latimer, MG Advisor, Professor and Extension Specialist, Horticulture Department Virginia Tech

CALS / VCE / Hort Administration Welcome & Update

9:00-10:00 Torgersen Hall room 2150 Tracy DiSabato-Aust, Speaker, Best-Selling Author, Triathelete, Horticulturist, Designer


Color in the Mixed Garden: Unmixing Color Theory for New Visions
11:00-12:00 Torgersen Hall room 2150 Jeff Corbin, EPA Senior Adviser for the Chesapeake Bay and Anacostia River AKA "Chesapeake Bay Czar"  US Environmental Protection Agency Reviving the Chesapeake Bay and its Rivers– What We’ve Accomplished and What Still Needs to Be Done
Friday Afternoon Choose one of the following during each period.  
1:30-3:00 Torgersen 1000 Philip Sheridan, Ph.D. Director and President, Meadowview Biological Research Station Bog Gardening
  Torgersen 1030 Chris Mullins, Extension Specialist, Greenhouse, VA State Coop Extension Service Home Irrigation: Do I Really Need It?
  Torgersen 2150 Chris Ludwig, Chief Biologist Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation’s Division of Natural Heritage Using the New Flora of Virginia: A Manual to the Manual
  Torgersen 1010 Erin Ling Community Based Social Marketing: A Method for Fostering Sustainable Behaviors
3:30-5:00 Torgersen 1010 Erin Ling and Brian Benham What’s in Your Water? Drinking Water in Virginia
  Torgersen 1040 Laurie Fox, Research Associate
Hampton Roads AREC
Top 10 Practices of a Water Wise Gardener
  Torgersen 1000 Philip Sheridan Restoring Diversity through Gardening

Saturday June 22, 2013

8:30-9:00 Torgersen Hall room 2150 Joyce Latimer Public Value of EMG
9:30-10:30 Torgersen Hall room 2150 Frank Reilly Climate Change: What Can You Do in Your Garden Right Now?
11:00-12:00 Torgersen Hall room 2150 Bryce Lane, Lecturer

Undergraduate Coordinator

Department of Horticultural Science
North Carolina State University
If You Build It, They Will Come: Understanding and Improving Garden Soils
Saturday Afternoon Choose one of the following during each period.  
1:30-3:00 Torgersen 1000 Frank Reilly Draining Issues in the Landscape
  Torgersen 1020 Derik Cataldi & Mike Goatley

VA Tech, Crop & Soil Environmental Sciences Dept


On the Frontline and in the Trenches with Urban Nutrient Management
3:30-5:00 Torgersen 1010 Laurie Fox Oh no! Those Water Weeds Have to Go!
  Torgersen 1030 Bryce Lane Waterwise Gardening: A Sustainable Approach
  Torgersen 2150 Kirsten Buhls, Lecturer Arlington Coop Extension Service Rain Gardens

Sunday June 23, 2013

9:30-10:30 Torgersen Hall room 2150 Holly Scoggins, Associate Professor and Director of Hahn Horticulture Garden, Horticulture Department, Virginia Tech Profiles in Plants: Developing New Cultivars
11:00-12:00 Torgersen Hall room 2150 Art Wolk, Author and Speaker.


Garden Lunacy


  • After College
    • Master Gardeners will be required to return to their units, consult with their Agent, assess community needs and develop a project and a program.



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Last modified: 09/10/13