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Beet 2023 01 January

Jackson County Master Gardeners Announcements — January 2023

By Beet 2023 01 January

Class of 2023 Master Gardener Volunteers

If you know anyone who would be interested in becoming a Master Gardener Volunteer, registration for 2023 OSU Extension Master Gardener Volunteer Training in Jackson County will be open later this Fall!    Please call the OSU Extension office at 541.776.7371 and leave your name, phone number, and email.  We will contact you when registration is open.


January 25th   Class of 2023 OSU Extension Master Gardener Volunteer Training starts.



Jackson County Agricultural Master Gardener & Home Horticulture Outreach Program Coordinator at SOREC

By Beet 2023 01 January
Good afternoon,

I welcome Grace Florjancic as the newest member of the Southern Region Team with great enthusiasm. Grace will serve as the Jackson County Agricultural Master Gardener & Home Horticulture Outreach Program Coordinator at SOREC. Grace will begin her role on Tuesday, January 17.

Please look out for an opportunity to welcome Grace to our organization!

A special thank you to the search committee for this position!

  • Committee Chair, Didgette McCracken
  • Committee Member, Danielle Knueppel
  • Committee Member, Gordon Jones
  • Committee Member, Jane Moyer
  • Search Advocate, Kayla Sheets

Grace’s Bio
Grace Florjancic (she/they) graduated from Virginia Tech with a degree in microbiology and horticulture. During undergraduate studies, Grace was a member of the Virginia Tech soil judging team, competing against schools along the East Coast. Also, she researched both beneficial and harmful microbial interactions with plants. These interactions have become a point of interest for her. Post-graduation, she was employed by George Washington University as the greenhouse manager. Grace worked with professors and students to support research experiments, learning in and out of the classroom, and to foster an interest in plants. Later, they worked at Meadowlark Botanic Garden, maintaining and designing garden beds. Caring for the pollinator garden sparked their interest in the roles native plants have in the environment and the importance of native biodiversity. Now, she is excited to learn about Southern Oregon’s ecosystems and how homeowners can positively impact them. She is also delighted for the opportunity to work with the community to build strong connections with nature, food, and each other.

Request for Assistance
I will develop a framework schedule to support Grace’s onboarding with prearranged meetings and connection opportunities for Grace’s first 60 days. If you have meetings that you would like Grace to attend, which are scheduled for January and February – please share this information with me by Tuesday, January 10. I will safeguard this time on Grace’s schedule.

In partnership,
Jamie Davis, Regional Director
Oregon State University | University Outreach and Engagement | OSU Extension Service
C: 541-815-0963 | 103 South E St., Lakeview, OR 97630

Southern Region: Douglas, Jackson, Josephine, Klamath and Lake Counties

Oregon State University Extension Service prohibits discrimination in all its programs, services, activities, and materials on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity (including gender expression), sexual orientation, disability, age, marital status, familial/parental status, income derived from a public assistance program, political beliefs, genetic information, veteran’s status, reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity. (Not all prohibited bases apply to all programs.)

El Servicio de Extensión de Oregon State University prohíbe la discriminación en todos sus programas, servicios, actividades y materiales en base a la raza, color, origen nacional, religión, sexo, identidad de género (incluyendo la expresión de género), orientación sexual, discapacidad, edad, estado civil, estatus de la familia/padres, ingresos derivados de un programa de asistencia pública, creencias políticas, información genética, estado de veterano, represalia o represalia por actividad previa de los derechos civiles. (No todos los términos prohibidos se aplican a todos los programas.)


(Message from Jamie Davis, Regional Director, which was sent in December.)




Unsung Hero of the Jackson County Master Gardener Program — Ronnie Budge

By Beet 2023 01 January

This month we want to recognize Ronnie Budge as Jackson County Master Gardeners Association’s Unsung Hero.  Over the years, Ronnie has been very involved with Jackson County Master Gardeners Association.

Ronnie retired from the Jackson County Library System in 2007.  She spent 20 years as director of the 15 library branch organization.  Ronnie was named the 2004 Oregon Librarian of the Year by the Oregon Library Association. When Ronnie retired, she traded in her business attire for her now recognizable flannel shirts. Whenever I see her, she has a smile on her face and encouraging words.

Ronnie is a member of the 2011 OSU Master Gardener class and became a very active Jackson County Master Gardeners Association member.  She has done many different jobs for our organization, including being a Practicum mentor; presenter for our Speakers Bureau; working on Spring Garden Fair; being President-Elect and President.  She chaired the Awards Committee, the Nominations Committee, and the Community Outreach Working Group and has  been involved in many more activities.

I have personally known Ronnie for only two years but during that time I have found her to be a very positive person who can take on a challenging situation and help find the solution.  She is a very hard worker with a great wealth of knowledge.  As the chair of the Community Outreach Working Group, she is a member of the Board of Directors.  We rely on her Jackson County Master Gardeners Association historical knowledge and her knowledge of the Roberts Rules of Order.

This past year, Ronnie moved out of state, but she is still very involved with the Jackson County Master Gardeners Association.  This is now possible by business conducted with Zoom and hybrid meetings.

Ronnie, thank you for your service and friendship.

January in the Garden

By Beet 2023 01 January

The air is brisk and temperatures are just plain cold. Plants are dormant – sleeping for the winter and awaiting the warmer temperatures that spring will bring. Hopefully, we will get lots of precipitation during the coming months for our plants to thrive and survive the summer.

With that said, our gardens still need to be cared for so that they will do well in the spring and summer.

The Jackson County Master Gardener Association has a great resource for gardeners to use. It is the Garden Guide for the Rogue Valley – Year-Round & Month by Month book.  This great reference book for gardeners is mainly about the growing of vegetables, berries, and melons.

In this article, I will briefly refer to what we should be working on during the month of January based on the information in this book and articles on the OSU website.

January is the time to

  • Plan what you want to plant in spring – if you haven’t done it already. What seeds do you want to order? Do you want to try some new or different vegetables and/or berries?
  • Take the time to browse seed catalogues or websites – but don’t take too long or you might not be able to receive the seeds you want to try. Find plants that are good for growing in our area during both cool and warm weather. Garden Guide for the Rogue Valley – Year Round & Month by Month (Revised 2017).  Pages 52-58 (Crops to Grow in Cool Seasons) (Crops to Grow in Warm Seasons) (Berries); pages 58-69 (Planting Tips for Specific Crops); and page 87 (Month of January).
  • Plants which you plant as seeds to transplant later are
    • Cabbage
    • Lettuce
    • Parsley
  • Plants which you can plant as seed outside
    • Peas (if there are the right soil conditions)
  • Time to prune your grapes





The Garden Guide for the Rogue Valley – Year-Round & Month by Month book contains a wealth of gardening information. You can purchase it at our local Grange Co-op or at the OSU Extension office for $21.00.


Happy Gardening and Stay Warm

Garden For Life

The President’s Corner

By Beet 2023 01 January

Welcome 2023!

I hope everyone had a wonderful Holiday Season and that you all were able to spend quality time with family and friends, especially those that you may not have been able to see during these last several years.

It has been a very fun time of year, what with the Gingerbread Jubilee, Festival of Trees, and the Soroptimist Holiday Home Tour all back in person after the long COVID-19 hiatus (yes, I go to them all)! Yummy Christmas luncheons and Open Houses were again enjoyed, making this year’s season feel warm, cozy and most certainly helped to put one in the holiday Spirit. (The eggnog and wine may have had something to do with that, too!)

I am very enthusiastic for this new year as your elected President!

We have slowly been coming out from under the umbrella of COVID-19 restrictions, each year doing a little more while allowing us to feel useful, productive and accomplished.

This past year on campus, we installed a water catchment system and caged water tanks to allow us to remain sustainable during the drought. The Native Nursery was enlarged and joined with the Propagation Nursery. Practicum moved from the condemned COH (Creepy Old House) into new storage PODS. Master Gardeners had five plant sales, a High Tea Membership Drive, Yard Sale, Annual Picnic with Awards, catered the Graduation Dinner, had a Holiday Bazaar, and produced a very successful 4-day on-line Winter Dreams Summer Gardens Symposium!

We learned we can make money while working within a limited budget, albeit with fewer volunteers, and still take care of the needs of the Association!

It takes a village and Master Gardeners have risen to the task of helping where needed.  Members got our message out there by teaching through OLLI, Winter Dreams Summer Gardens, the Speakers Bureau, at Garden Clubs and on Jefferson Public Radio.

While we were able to hold our first hybrid Board Meeting and a Retreat, we are happy to be back again (somewhat) in person and will have hybrid meetings once a quarter in the new year!

We are starting out knowing that the 2023 Master Gardener Program will have a full-size class of more than 50 students, with Practicum returning and a new Coordinator! Meeting in Greenhouse 1 as a classroom, they will focus on growing vegetables and herbs for a Spring Plant Sale. We might even ask some venders to join us on campus for a slightly modified Spring Garden Fair. I’d like to see a collaboration between the other programs at the Extension – inviting them to join us in some events, have Garden Tours in our beautiful Demonstration Gardens and hopefully this fall, have a Harvest Fair with winter vegetable starts as well as items to sell made from our lavender harvest.

We have a terrific group as the new Board of Directors and I am looking forward to seeing what wonderful things we can do in the coming year. So, raise a glass (mine is always half full) in a toast to JCMGA 2023 and come join the party!


Report for 2023 JCMGA Board of Directors Election

By Beet 2023 01 January

Teresina Christy – 2022 Membership Secretary

The 2023 JCMGA Board election ended at midnight on Friday, November 4. Thirty-seven people voted online. Four people voted using a paper ballot. The three election tellers—Membership Secretary Teresina Christy, Recording Secretary Jane Moyer, and Archivist Pam Hillers—met on the following Tuesday to count the ballots.

Results were announced at the November 11th Board Meeting:

President—Marcie Katz (elected in 2022)

President-Elect—Barbara Low

Recording Secretary—Jane Moyer

Membership Secretary—Margaret Saydah

Treasurer—Sean Cawley

Assistant Treasurer—Keltie Nelson

OMGA Representative—Kathy Apple

Archivist—Pam Hiller

Members-at-Large—Dee Copley

Lucy Pylkki

Cassandra Toews

Colet Allen

Trina Stout



Thank you to all who voted.


Fundraising Working Group

By Beet 2023 01 January

Jackson County Master Gardener program is a non-profit group. This, however, does not mean we do not want to raise money and have a small profit to keep the bills paid and our JCMGA programs funded.

There are several sections of the Fundraising Working Group. One section is Grant Writing. The other sections include the Go Fund Me drive, the Grange Co-Op rewards program, the Garden Guide for the Rogue Valley: Year ‘Round & Month by Month sales, the 50/50 money drive at special events and the Bottle and Can return. (Pick up bags for the bottles and cans in the entry of the Extension.)

We have done several yard sales on campus in the past. These proved to be somewhat successful but are extremely labor-intensive to justify going forward. In November, we had a Holiday Bazaar and Native Plant Sale. Many items, including wreaths, swags, gnomes, Christmas stockings and tree ornaments were made over several months by enthusiastic members.

Going forward, the plan is to have a Fall Festival fair on campus selling Christmas items and native and Practicum plants.

Ours is a FUN group, which is the first three letters of FUNdraising. We are a group where laughter and brainstorming are abundant.

We meet at 1:00 pm on the 3rd Friday of each month at the OSU Extension. We are always looking for volunteers and ideas. Please contact chairperson Sandy Hammond at 541-826-5296 or email

Jim Scannell

By Beet 2023 01 January

by Linda Holder and Jane Moyer

Jim Scannell may not be remembered by many current Jackson County Master Gardeners, but we can all thank him and his wife, Ellen, for many aspects of JCMGA.  He took the class in 1997, was an at large board member in 1998-99, 2006, 2007, and 2008; treasurer in 1999, 2000, 2004, 2005, 2009, and 2010; president in 2001; recording secretary in 2002; audit chair in 2006 and 2007; historian (pre-archivist) in 2008 and 2009; and OMGA Alternate Representative in 2011 and 2012.  Recognizing how valuable Jim was to JCMGA, he was awarded Life Membership in 2005.

Jim looked after the JCMGA treasury with eagle eyes and can largely be credited, in our opinion, to the fact that we have a healthy bank account to this day. Jim always told us that we needed to plan for a rainy day and during his years as our treasurer, he made sure we had a plentiful cushion to get us through hard times.

Jim was an advocate for the creation of the Demonstration Gardens and worked tirelessly on the pathways.  When Ellen was granted permission to start the Lavender Garden in 2002, Jim put in countless hours of hard labor creating the paths in it. However, after scouring the archives, not much could be found in the way of documentation of his involvement. That’s because Jim worked quietly behind the scenes and was never one to toot his own horn! Here’s the extent of what could be found in past copies of The Garden Beet:

In December 2002, Ellen wrote, “Jim and I started clearing the area for the new Lavender Garden of gourds, vines and debris.” She also said, “Jim will order several loads of granite for pathways which are his forte.”

In Winter 2003, Ellen wrote, “Jim laid down granite paths.” Note, this was done in winter! What is not stated is there was a lot of snow that winter that led to plentiful and deep mud. The lavender plants, donated by Jim and Dottie Becker of Goodwin Creek Gardens, were planted in snow and mud that hardened around them. The paths were created under the same conditions.

Jim Scannell was one of our most favorite people in the whole world, a “Mr. Rogers type” of guy! He was quiet, thoughtful, studious, hard-working, diligent, unassuming, a gentleman through and through, and possessed an often unseen, very wry sense of humor. He donated hours and hours of physical labor to JCMGA as well as being a loyal part of the administration. No job was too small nor too large for Jim!

Jim passed away on November 15, 2022, in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Rest in peace, Jim! Your efforts live on in JCMGA!

Easy Fundraising for JCMGA

By Beet 2023 01 January

This is the third in a series of articles on how JCMGA can be financially supported with little or no personal expense. This month, we are going to concentrate on returning redeemable bottles and cans through

Bottle Drop.

Bottle Drop Give is the bottle and can drive that never ends for Oregon nonprofits like JCMGA. Supporters (that’s YOU!) fill blue plastic bags with their empty deposit containers and drop them off at 1179 Stowe Ave, Medford, OR 97501, just off N. Ross Lane.  Bottle Drop is open 8am – 6pm daily if you want to take them inside the building. Much more convenient, though, is the small door on the side of the building. The label on the bag can be waved in front of the scanner next to the door to make it open. Drop your full bag inside and JCMGA will receive 10¢ for each container returned. To date, JCMGA has been earning about $200/month with this fundraiser.

The required blue bags are available on the table in the lobby of the OSU Extension. The printed label on the

front of each bag identifies it as creditable to JCMGA. Please fill the bags as full as possible because JCMGA

has to pay for each bag whether it is full or not.

Water bottles. Soda cans. Beer bottles. Sports drink bottles. Fruit juice bottles. These are just a few of the containers accepted by Bottle Drop. Most beverages have an Oregon refund value. There are too many

beverages on the market to list them all individually.

Rule of Thumb: Generally, if you can pour it and drink it, it’s covered unless it’s one of the specifically excluded beverages (distilled spirits, wine, dairy milk, plant‐based milk, infant formula, and liquid meal replacements) or if it’s in a carton, foil pouch, drink box, or metal container that requires a tool to be opened.

Included, but only if they are glass, metal, or plastic bottles or cans in the following sizes:

Beverages in sizes 3 liters or less:

  • Soda (carbonated/sparkling beverages) * Beer and other malt beverages
  • Water * Kombucha

Beverages in sizes from 4 ounces up to and including 1.5 liters:

  • Hard Seltzer
  • Coffee/tea (even if they contain milk)
  • Energy and sports drinks
  • Fruit and vegetable juice (does not have to be 100%)
  • Smoothies and shakes
  • Aloe vera juice
  • Coconut water
  • Non‐alcohol wine
  • Drinking vinegar
  • Hard cider if 8.5% ABV or less
  • Marijuana beverages
  • Muscle Milk
  • Protein shakes (unless marketed as a liquid meal replacement)
  • Ready‐to‐drink cocktail mixers, like margarita mix or bloody Mary mix
  • Thank you for your contribution!   

Sea You in the New Year

By Beet 2023 01 January

Got you thinking, “oceans?”  This “sea” is a plant, Hippophae rhamnoides. Hippophae translates asshiny horse” which refers to its usage in horse fodder because it makes horses’ coats’ shiny. Sea Berry, sea buckthorn, is a most miraculous bush.

This deciduous, perennial woody plant isn’t well known in the US.  Even though introduced here from Canadian growers in the 1930s, if you want these beneficial and seemingly magical berries, you’ll have to grow your own.

Sea Berry’s nitrogen-fixing ability allows it to tolerate the poorest–even saline-laden–soils and it benefits neighboring plants. Given full sun and good drainage, it will reward you with a “sea” of vibrant orange, nutrient-rich berries!

While Sea Berries are relatively new here, they’ve been traced back to 300 BC as mentioned in ancient Greek texts by Theophrastus. Also, Pliny the Elder referenced it in his natural history books in 77-79 AD.

Native to regions of Europe and Asia, it grows along seashores, sandy dunes, riverbanks, and mountain slopes up to 12,000 feet.  It’s no wonder all parts of this remarkable plant have been harvested for centuries in China and Russia for its medicinal and nutritional benefits.

Sea Berries’ nutritional and medicinal values could fill a book. Briefly, their juiced berries have high concentrations of carotenoids, omega fatty acids, up to 10 times the vitamin C of oranges, strawberries, or kiwis, more vitamin E than wheat germ, vitamins A, B and D, as well as 18 of the 22 amino acids!

Its oil has long been prized in the cosmetics industry for wrinkle reduction and as an antiseptic, a tissue regenerate for burns and a pain reliever.

Although small and light weight (1 gram), a Sea Berry really packs a punch with tangy, citrus-like tartness and tones of passion fruit, mango and apricot.

Growing 6 to 10 feet tall, Sea Berries are dioecious. With male and female flowers produced on separate plants, you’ll need both to produce fruit. Since flowers are wind-pollinated, it’s important to pay attention to the spring wind direction for the planting area.  Mason bees are always a pollinating plus!

Sea Berry plants have narrow, shiny, silvery-green leaves, and as their name implies, rather fierce thorns on many varieties.

Although young plants require irrigation, Sea Berries are also drought-tolerant once established. They’ll also survive -45°F and over 105°F, but fruit best in temperatures in the 90s.

Although easy to care for (sloppy pruning will still give you fruit), the goal is improving branching habit, maintaining an optimum number of new and young fruiting branches, removing old, weak, and dead branches, and increasing light penetration. Keeping the plant at 8 to 9 feet tall makes them more manageable when pruning and harvesting.

Most fruit is born on horizontal second year branches, so in late winter, prune out upward- and downward-facing limbs.

Despite fruiting only on second-year branches, harvesting is most efficient by cutting off the entire branch. You’ll avoid thorns which can make it impossible to pick the berries.

Freezing branches until berries are frozen makes them easy to remove with a fork. Keep frozen berries in zip bags for long storage for juices, jams, smoothies, sorbets, or any recipes to which you might desire to add some vitamin tart-sweet tang.

If you want an ocean of nutritional fruit, set out some Sea Berries.


Info resources:

One Green World 


Plant sources:

One Green World

They have the greatest number of varieties. It’s good to preorder or you’ll need to get on the wait list.


Portland Nursery

A list of available varieties helps you choose from inventory



Sea Berry Mousse

Serves 6

About ¾ lb. frozen Sea Berries or 2/3 cup of juice

1 cup water

1 pkg unflavored gelatin

1/3 cup milk, soy or almond milk

½ cup honey or agave nectar

1 cup whipping cream

2/3 cup vanilla Greek yogurt

1 teaspoon vanilla paste or extract

Mint leaves

Pistachio nuts

Whole Sea Berries

If not using already juiced berries, bring frozen berries to a gentle boil in water for about 4-5 minutes.  Purée in blender or food processor then strain through a sieve.  Mix juice with honey and let cool.

Sprinkle gelatin over milk and let plump for about 5 minutes.  Stir into juice and heat on medium low until gelatin is dissolved.  Remove from heat and let cool until it starts to thicken a bit.

Whip cream with yogurt until stiff peaks form, then gently stir in Sea Berry juice mixture and vanilla.  Spoon into individual serving bowls and garnish with mint leaves, a few Sea Berries and pistachio nuts.