The Cooperative Extension service is a “nationwide, non-credit educational network” offering localized advice to those with questions about their landscape and its materials. Pest problems may be resolved with your county agents advice as may soil situations, varieties to plant for your area and a host of other issues.
Extension agents often pair their services with the local library by offering seminars. Presented by Agents and Master Gardener volunteers, topics are seasonal and range from planting tomatoes to pruning trees. Questions are welcome and you will likely find your agent to be knowledgeable about all issues garden related.
If an insect or other pest is damaging or destroying your crops, chances are yours is not the only one and your agent will likely know the easiest and most reliable remedy. These experts stay informed and know where to find needed information. They keep up to date with signs and symptoms of insects and diseases and what method of treatment is most effective and environmentally friendly.
Perhaps you are thinking of planting a crop, such as blueberries, that requires a low pH for optimum crop yield. Take soil samples to the Extension office for results from the land-grant university with which they are associated. Recommendations for soil amendment for your area will accompany the results. The fee for this, if any, is nominal and more accurate than many devices for home use.
Master Gardener Volunteer
For those with a love of gardening and a desire to help their neighbor, the Master Gardener program is often a rewarding experience. Training is provided and it is an awesome means of obtaining experience to apply in your own garden.
The County Extension service is an invaluable resource to the community. Take advantage of the assistance to establish your own self sustaining gardening experience.