University of Maryland Extension

Monthly Speakers

Master Gardeners are encouraged to attend a variety of advanced training sessions offered at Montgomery County Master Gardener Membership Meetings on the first Thursday of each month except December. Some meetings are held in Derwood while others are held at the Gaithersburg Fairgrounds. Meetings are open only to Master Gardeners and Interns. All these seminars are free and count toward the required hours of continuing education per calendar year.

Detailed instructions for attending a Zoom meeting can be found here. Please note: Starting in June 2020, MCMG Monthly General Membership Meetings will be recorded and available for playback for the benefit of Master Gardeners.  Recordings will be available for approximately 1 year after the presentation on the Resources from Talks Given to General Membership Meeting and New Class page.

Signup here to volunteer for setup and takedown of chairs and/or tables at the monthly meetings.

To view the archived list of monthly speakers, click here.

The 2020 schedule of speakers is:

January 2Lori Baker, Heron's Meadow FarmCreating Maryland's First Tea FarmDerwood
February 6Melissa Gildea, Principal, Lotus Design and Consulting LLCWhat the Natural Landscape Teaches Us about DesignFairgrounds
March 5Scott Aker, Head of Horticulture and Education, National ArboretumPlant BiodiversityFairgrounds
May 7 Eric Wenger, Owner, Complete Lawn Care and Complete Plant Health CareUpdate on Turf Management in Montgomery CountyZoom
June 4Washington White, Waters OrchardThe Journey to Creating a Cidery at Waters Orchard  Zoom
July 2
Michael Furbish, President and Founder of Furbish CoLiving Architecture: Green Walls for Residential and Community ScalesZoom
August 6

Eileen Kao, Chief, Waste Reduction and Recycling Section: Department of Environmental Protection

Update on Recycling Issues in Montgomery County as it Pertains to the Gardener / HomeownerZoom
September 3

William McLaughlin, US Botanic Gardens - Plant Curator (Retired)

New Angles for Native PlantsZoom
October 1TBD



November 5

Kerry L Wixted, Education and Outreach Specialist, Wildlife and Heritage Service,Maryland Department of Natural Resources

Misunderstood WildlifeZoom
DecemberHoliday party - TBDTBD

The 2019 schedule of speakers was:

JanuaryJafar Vossoughi, MG class of 2015 and fig growerHistory and Cultivation of FigsFairgrounds
FebruaryDr. Mark Soloski, Prof of Medicine.  Rheumatologist, Johns Hopkins.Lyme Disease, Its Symptoms and Treatments, Latest Research, Tick Life CycleDerwood
MarchNancy Lawson, author of "The Humane Gardener"Animal-Friendly Landscaping MethodsFairgrounds
AprilMark Highland, author of “Practical Organic Gardening”Founder and president of “The Organic Mechanics Soil Co.”Fairgrounds
May also plant swapAlonso Abbugattas, Natural Resources Mgr, Arlington County Parks and RecreationNative Plants Used by Indigenous People and Early AmericansFairgrounds
June also picnicEugene Scarpulla, Patuxent Wildlife Research CenterBiology of  Native Solitary and Parasitic Bees of MarylandDerwood
July 11Chris Puttock, Chesapeake Natives, Inc., National Museum of Natural History, Botanical Society of WashingtonProtection and Propagation of Native Plants and Grasses in Maryland and the Chesapeake RegionFairgrounds
August 8Bennett Saunders, Saunders BrothersBoxwood Diseases and PestsDerwood

Serennella Linares, school programs manager, Audubon Naturalist Society

The benefits of fungi in the garden; types of fungi, their functions and how they change things in the gardenFairgrounds

Fall Conference

Check In 8:30 - 9 am

Session I 9:15 - 10:30 am

Session II 10:45 - Noon

Session III 12:45 - 2:00 pm

I) Dan Potter: Bees, Pesticides and Politics

II) Zachary Lamas: Landscape Affects on Bee Health

III) Dan Potter: How to Build a Better Monarch Garden


November also Fall Plant Swap

Ruth Kassinger, Author

Slime, Our Good FriendFairgrounds
DecemberHoliday partyFairgrounds

The 2018 schedule of speakers was:

JanuaryMeeting CancelledMeeting Cancelled due to inclement weatherFairgrounds
FebruaryPhil Normandy, Brookside Gardens collection manager"Trees in Our Gardens: Effects of Climate Change?"Fairgrounds
MarchAllyson Tjaden, Maryland Institute of Applied Environmental HealthUMd Sustainability Program, Dining Services local and sustainable food initiativesFairgrounds
AprilClaudia West, principal, PHYTO Studio LLCEcological Plants and Successful Planting StrategiesFairgrounds
May also plant swapStanton Gill, Extension Specialist and Entomologist, UMdNew insect pests and diseases in the Mid-Atlantic and how they are being addressedFairgrounds
June also picnicSara Via, Professor of Biology University of MdClimate Change Effects on Plants Native to the Mid-AtlanticDerwood
JulyMichael JuddEdible and Ecological Landscape DesignsFairgrounds
AugustRebecca Waterworth, UMd Research Associate, Dept. of EntomologyConservation of beneficial arthropods in managed landscapes, including natural enemies and pollinatorsFairgrounds
SeptemberJack SullivanNational Military Medical Center's Green Roads Healing GardenFairgrounds
October also plant swapSusan Strasser, Professor Emeritus of History, U. of Delaware"Snake Oil Revisited: Plant Medicines in American History"Fairgrounds
DecemberHoliday partyFairgrounds

The 2017 schedule of speakers was:

JanuaryMargaret Morgan-HubbardECOCity Farms mission of supporting urban farmers and bringing locally grown food to city dwellersFairgrounds
FebruaryJay JansenPotomac Rose Society.  Cultivation and care of roses commonly grown in the Mid-AtlanticFairgrounds
MarchJarrod MillerSoil Contamination and Vegetable GardeningFairgrounds
AprilScott Kratz, 11th Street Bridge Park Project Director11th Street Bridge Park Project, Washington's first elevated public parkDerwood
May also plant swapChuck SchusterUpdate on Montgomery County Pesticide OrdinanceFairgrounds
June also picnicJeannine DorothyMaryland State Mosquito Control Program and Importance in Limiting Spread of Insect-Borne DiseaseDerwood
JulyJanet Draper, HorticulturistMary Livingston Ripley Garden, Smithsonian GardensFairgrounds
AugustSophia Watkins, co-owner of Soleado Lavender FarmPropagation and Cultivation of Lavender in MarylandFairgrounds
SeptemberDean NortonThe Beauty, Importance, and Preservation of Mt. Vernon's Gardens and LandscapingFairgrounds
October also plant swapAnthony Buda, Hydrologist, USDAClimate Change and What MGs Should Know About Its Impact on Rainfall and Temperatures in the Mid-Atlantic RegionFairgrounds
DecemberHoliday partyFairgrounds

The 2016 schedule of speakers was:

JanuaryKevin ConradNational Arboretum Floral and Nursery Plant ResearchFairgrounds
FebruaryPat LynchMontgomery County Community GardensFairgrounds
MarchBarbara GlickmanMaryland Public Parks and PlaygroundsFairgrounds
AprilStanton GillFruit Tree Growing for Backyard GardenersFairgrounds
May also plant swapNichole HamiltonMonarch Butterfly ConservationFairgrounds
June also picnicEvan KetoMontgomery County Tree Planting ProgramDerwood
JulyMelissa McCormickWild and Native Orchids and Relationship with Fungi Needed for Seed GerminationFairgrounds
AugustDr. Sara ViaSustainable Gardening in a Changing ClimateFairgrounds
SeptemberDonna KoczajaGrowing, Harvesting and Preparing Therapeutic Herbs for Self-CareFairgrounds
October also plant swapKathy JentzPreparing Your Garden for WinterFairgrounds
DecemberHoliday partyFairgrounds

The 2015 schedule of speakers was:

JanuaryCheryl CorsonSustaninable LandscapesFairgrounds
FebruaryJohn HadadianHumane mgt of wildlifeFairgrounds
MarchPat LynchM.C. Community GardensFairgrounds
AprilCarol MulletEnglish Garden DesignFairgrounds
May also plant swapJeannine DorothyMosquitoes: Biology, Ecology, and Effects of Imported SpeciesFairgrounds
June also picnicJeremy CrissCounty programs to support county agricultureDerwood
JulyDennis vanEngelsdorpWhy we need beesFairgrounds
AugustKevin ConradNational Arboretum Woody Landscape Plant GermplasmDerwood
SeptemberEric WengerBuilding and Maintaining a Healthy LawnFairgrounds
October also plant swapCarol AllenGrowing Orchids in the HomeFairgrounds
DecemberHoliday partyFairgrounds
Maintained by the IET Department of the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources. © 2020. Web Accessibility

University programs, activities, and facilities are available to all without regard to race, color, sex, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, marital status, age, national origin, political affiliation, physical or mental disability, religion, protected veteran status, genetic information, personal appearance, or any other legally protected class. If you need a reasonable accommodation to participate in any event or activity, please contact your local University of Maryland Extension Office.