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Several optional workshops will be held on Thursday, August 19. 

Thursday, August 19, 1-4:30 p.m.

MSU Volunteer Leadership Workshop

This new and unique workshop was developed to address a common need across many MSU Extension Master Gardeners® to learn more about leading and supporting volunteer projects. This workshop will explore three topic areas and end with a Q&A session that includes all three speakers. We are excited to offer this workshop free of charge and envision it becoming a regular educational offering to MSU Extension Master Gardeners® in the years to come.

Limited to 200 people. While there is no additional fee for all three leadership sessions, pre-registration is required. 

Leadership 101: Project Funding Areas 
Liz Slajus, Advanced Master Gardener and Coordinator, MSU Extension
This presentation will provide ideas and basic guidance on the various types of funding available to MSU Extension Master Gardeners®. Learn about important considerations and timelines that will help you when applying for grants, donations and fundraising. The presentation will include a panel of experts, sharing their experiences and answering your questions.

No additional fee required.

Leadership 201: Volunteer Recruitment, Motivation and Recognition 
Frank Cox, Educator, MSU Extension
How can you recruit the volunteers you need?  Along with recruiting volunteers, how can you retain them to stay with your program?  We will explore the concept of targeted volunteer recruitment and different types of volunteer motivation for not only recruitment, but also for retention, motivation, and recognition.

No additional fee required.

Leadership 301: Setting Healthy Boundaries and Working through Conflict
Lisa Bottomley, Senior Specialist and Manager for Extension Volunteer Administration, MSU Extension
When you are passionate about your volunteer work, it can be difficult to say no. Setting and maintaining healthy boundaries will help you avoid burnout and frustration. In this session, we will define boundaries and discuss how volunteers can set and convey their boundaries in person and online. We will also explore ways to communicate when conflict arises in volunteer settings.

No additional fee required.


Thursday, August 19, 1-5 p.m.

(An additional fee will apply)

Defining Your Canvas: Landscape Design

Jean Persely, Advanced Master Gardener, Master Composter, Master Rain Gardener and Certified Landscape Designer

Join us as we explore the art of landscape design. Discover how to evaluate your site for your personal wants and needs while utilizing principles and elements of design. What are some things you need to consider when planning your design? What opportunities and limitations does your site pose? Scale, balance, line, color and texture are just a few topics we will delve into. Don’t roll the dice on your landscaping. Learn how to invest your time in creating an aesthetically pleasing design that is practical for you and your site.

Taking measurements prior to Master Gardener College may enhance your participation in this workshop, but isn’t required. If you would like to have your yard be part of the interactive program, you can email the presenter prior to Master Gardener College. All workshop registrants will receive an email with further information.

Limited to 25 people. Additional registration fee of $15 will apply.

Hydroponic Gardening

Christopher Imler, Consumer Horticulture and Veterans Outreach Educator, MSU Extension

This science-based workshop explains in plain terms what makes hydroponics work, how simple systems can be built using low-cost materials, and the best practices for producing big, tasty vegetables and herbs at home with minimal fuss.

Limited to 120 people. Additional registration fee of $15 will apply.


Master the Science and Art of Pruning: An Interactive Pruning Workshop

Rebecca Finneran, Senior Horticulture Educator, MSU Extension

Pruning is an important cultural practice to maintain health, safety, vigor and appearance of woody plants in the landscape. It involves both art and science – art, in shaping plants to enhance the garden design, and science, in knowing how, when and why to prune for maximum benefit.  

MSU Extension Sr. Horticulture Educator, Rebecca Finneran will employ her 30+ years of experience pruning woody plants to lead this interactive, on-line workshop.  The workshop is designed to help participants learn best practices and how to choose the proper equipment. The workshop will take place live, online.  Participants will have the opportunity to ask questions and interact with the instructor, as well as submit a photo of a pruning challenge beforehand for discussion and analysis.

Limited to 90 people. Additional registration fee of $15 will apply.


Thursday, August 19, 8:30-10 p.m. 

(An additional fee will apply)
Creatures of the Night: Getting to Know and Observe Nocturnal Insects

David Lowenstein, Consumer Horticulture Educator, MSU Extension

Insects are easily recognized during the daylight hours. Yet, there many moths wait until evening and darkness to appear and fly. This session will provide an overview of nocturnal insects, why they fly at night, and some of the most common moths present in Michigan. Following the presentation, attendees will have a chance to set up a moth collection station, check for nocturnal insects, and share photos of any nocturnal insects they have observed. Whether you live in the country or in a suburb with light pollution, there are likely nocturnal moths by your residence.

Limited to 40 people. Additional registration fee of $15 will apply.