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Highlighting JCMGA Experts Presenting at Winter Dreams/Summer Gardens


Last month began our Beet series of three articles on the speakers and their presentations for the upcoming Winter Dreams/Summer Gardens Symposium October 27-28 and November 3-4. This month I shine a spotlight on Jackson County Master Gardener Association’s own experts who are presenters at the symposium. We have a deep and talented bench at JCMGA!


Ronnie Budge 

  • Presentation: Two 45-minute presentations: 1) Unlocking the Mysteries of the Seed Catalog, and 2) Coping with Critters in the Garden
  • Description
  • Every flower and vegetable variety described in a seed catalog, accompanied by a beautiful photo, is so tempting. How do you pick and choose? Learn to decipher the codes and clues in the catalog before you order, so you can grow the kind of garden you really want.
  • Deer, squirrels, gophers and voles – how do you keep them from destroying your garden? Learn what methods will help you control the pests, and what probably won’t work.
  • Speaker Bio: You can take the woman out of the Rogue Valley, but you can’t take the Rogue Valley out of the woman. Although she moved to Seattle last year, Ronnie continues to honor us with her participation in JCMGA. Ronnie lived and gardened a large part of her adult life in the valley. She became a Master Gardener and served as a Practicum mentor for many years. She tended vegetable and ornamental gardens on her property near Jacksonville where she did battle with all manner of “critters”.


John Kobal    

  • Presentation: Rock Gardens
  • Description: Create a unique feature, exclusive to your property. Try a Rock Garden.  Each rock garden is unique to its developer and varies by plant and hardscape variety.  It’s not hard to build one, but does take some planning and forethought.  The plants are usually on the small side, but a well-placed tree can be a welcome addition.  Create living pathways, garden walls, and points of interest using rocks (and plants).
  • Speaker bio: John has 30+ years of gardening experience.  He relocated to the Rogue Valley in 2014, and is a Master Gardener, certified by the Oregon State University Extension in Jackson County.  John has an extensive orchard, an in-ground garden and 18 raised beds used for growing vegetables.  He has three worm bins which compost a majority of kitchen scraps.  John is a garden lecturer for civic organizations, interfaces with several local school gardening programs, is an instructor in the Practicum aspect of the Master Gardener Training Program, is an OLLI instructor, and hosts the garden lecture series at the annual Master Gardener Spring Garden Fair.




Bonnie Englehardt  

  • Title: Masses of Grasses
  • Description:  Overwhelmed with the abundance of ornamental grass options, but ready to delve into this endlessly useful category of plants? Come explore the varieties that are best suited to our region, including many North American natives, and learn about their bountiful benefits-: deer resistance, drought tolerance and wildlife habitat among them.  Tips and information on the best care practices will also be discussed.
  • Speaker Bio:  Bonni Engelhardt is a landscape designer, Master Gardener, and writer.  She loves to share her knowledge and enthusiasm for plants with the community.



Rosenelle Florencechild 

  • Title of Presentation: Fragrance in the Garden   
  • Description of Presentation: When we see a beautiful flower in the garden, instinctively we bend toward the bloom and breathe in. Often we are disappointed. As modern hybridizers work toward increasing pest and disease resilience, scent is sacrificed. This presentation will examine varieties of shrubs – peonies, roses, lavender, and herbs – such as mints, lemon verbena, and pineapple sage – that offer a feast for your nose as well as your eyes.
  • Speaker Bio: Rosenelle Florencechild completed the Jackson County Master Gardener Program in 2013. She served as Head Gardener of the Lavender Garden from 2014-2016. She is a member of the Herb Society of America, the American Rose Society, and several local garden clubs.



Marsha Waite  

  • Presentation: Identifying and Attracting Beneficial Insects to the Home Garden 
  • Description: This class will help students identify, attract and protect some of the best garden helpers in Southern Oregon. Come learn which factors are depleting beneficial insect populations and what we can do to help them survive these challenging times.
  • Speaker Bio: Marsha Waite, a Master Gardener since 1995, has been a Plant Clinic Specialist and an Entomology and Integrated Pest Management instructor for the past 28 years. She has given many classes to garden clubs in Oregon and written articles for the Mail Tribune and Garden Beet. She was given the Jackson Co. Master Gardener of the Year award in 2000, Oregon State Master Gardener of the Year award in 2007, and was the State Behind the Scenes award recipient in 2016.