Article Written by Mike Hogan, OSU Extension, Franklin County, Agricultural and Natural Resources Educator
Two years ago The Columbus Dispatch asked OSU Extension to develop an educational outreach component for the Spring and Fall Home and Garden Shows conducted by the Shows Division of The Dispatch. Since that time, OSU Extension and our Master Gardener Volunteers have had a tremendous impact on community outreach efforts at the shows.
At this year’s eight-day show in late February, OSU Extension faculty and staff members taught 10 one hour-long presentations on the main Garden Stage, and Master Gardener Volunteers (MGV’s) taught 11 one hour-long presentations on the stage. These presentations attracted hundreds of participants. MGV’s also staffed an Ask A Master Gardener booth during the show, where they answered 1,605 questions from gardeners, and distributed more than 5,000 OSU Extension gardening fact-sheets and publications. This partnership has evolved into one of the largest community outreach activities for MGV’s in Franklin County.
In 2016 MGV’s in Franklin County conducted 22 different Ask A Master Gardener booths in communities throughout Franklin County, where they educated 2,123 gardeners. To schedule an Ask A Master A Gardener Booth at your community event, contact Mike Hogan at firstname.lastname@example.org.