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Environmental Horticulture offers programs throughout the community to promote and educate citizens on practices to promote sustainable gardening and environmentally sound landscapes. The Horticulture Agent and/or the volunteer Master Gardeners provide technical information and assistance to households which maintain and improve their landscape design, grounds, and quality of life.
Homeowners can submit insect samples for identification by bringing a live or dead insect sample (well preserved) to the Chesapeake Extension Office. Bring sample in a zip lock plastic bag. Master Gardener volunteers or Extension Agents will try to identify and make a recommendation if the insect is a pest. If we are not able to identify it, we will mail your insect sample to the Insect ID lab at Virginia Tech. You should have an answer in about 10-days.
Plant Disease Laboratory
Homeowners can submit plant samples for disease identification by bringing a plant sample with root intact in a ziplock bag with one pint of moist soil to the Chesapeake Extension Office. If Extension Agents or Master Gardeners are not available or able to identify any disease, we will mail the sample to the Plant Disease Laboratory at Virginia Tech. You should have an answer in about 10-days.
Homeowners can submit soil samples to the Soil Testing Laboratory at Virginia Tech by picking up soil sample boxes at the Chesapeake Extension Office. We will provide you with the application form and instructions, so you will be responsible for taking your soil sample and mailing it to the lab. A report will be mailed to you from the Soil Testing Lab with recommendations for the plant/crop you plan to grow. Soil samples generally take two weeks to receive a report back in the mail.
Homeowners can submit weed samples for identification by bringing a freshly dug weed with roots wrapped in a moist paper towel inside a ziplock bag to the Chesapeake Extension Office. If Extension Agents or Master Gardeners are not available or able to identify the weed, we will mail it to the Weed ID Laboratory at Virginia Tech. You should have an answer in about 10-days.
In the area of Environmental Horticulture, there is some specificity that includes:
- Commercial pesticide training and recertification
- Diagnose plant problems
- Educational gardens
- Gardening, landscaping and lawn questions
- Help desk booths at community events
- Speakers bureau classes and workshops
Therefore, for your questions relating to turf and lawn, horticulture, gardening, greenhouses, pruning, pesticides, Master Gardeners, or pond questions, contact the Horticulture Agent (Mike Andruczyk), as indicated below.