• June 12, 2020 11:29 AM | Anonymous

    UMass Extension's

    Hort Notes: Clippings from the Garden 
    June 2020, Vol. 31:4

    A monthly e-newsletter from UMass Extension for landscapers, arborists, and other Green Industry professionals.


    • TickReport Update
    • MA Pesticide License Info: Licenses, Study Manuals, and Exams
    • Humidity and Water Management are Critical for Lawn Disease Prevention
    • Q&A about Viburnum Leaf Beetle, Hornets, European Elm Scale, Gypsy Moth, and Euonymus Caterpillar
    • Yellow Nutsedge Management in Turf and Landscape
    • Garden Clippings Tips of the Month
    • Can Community Forests in the Northeast U.S. Keep Pace with a Changing Climate?
    • Upcoming Events

  • June 08, 2020 2:46 PM | Anonymous

    The Department is pleased to announce that it will begin holding pesticide exams during the week of June 15th.  The exams will be given in small numbers within the exam applicants vehicle. Exams will be scheduled in the order of cancellation with a focus on the Commercial Applicators License (Core) exam for the first few exams.  The applicants will be contacted with the rescheduled date via email.  The email will include a set of detailed instructions.  If an individual is not able to make the rescheduled date but would still like to take the exam, they will be placed at the end of the list for rescheduling. It is imperative that if an individual has opted to no longer take the test they notify the Department immediately.  Due to the small size of the exams every spot counts towards getting through the backlog as quickly as possible.  Once all or most of the cancelled exams have been given, the Department will open up the exam dates to allow for new exams to be offered.  I would like to note that the Department has put out a request for bids relative to an online exam proctoring service for a long term solution.  We will keep you posted as that option develops.

    Taryn LaScola-Miner, Director

  • May 28, 2020 4:18 PM | Anonymous

  • May 25, 2020 11:36 AM | Anonymous

    MASSACHUSETTS | Pesticide Advisory Council meets, MDAR updates in response to COVID-19

    The Massachusetts Pesticide Advisory Council met last Friday with the staff of the Department of Agricultural Resources to discuss policy issues. Director of Crop & Pest Services Taryn LaScola-Miner had some interesting developments to pass along including a deadline extension for the auditing of recertification credits until September 30, 2020. The certification and training portion of the state regulations is under review and a first draft is expected to be circulated in the coming weeks. Highlights of changes being proposed include requiring professional applicators who use EPA 25(b) products to obtain a state pesticide license, the combination of the shade trees & ornamentals and turfgrass categories into a single category, and updates to the insurance coverage required by pesticide applicators. 

    Massachusetts has canceled all pesticide license examinations through the month of May, leaving over 450 people who had applied prior to the onset of the pandemic without an opportunity to become licensed. Due to the logistics of how MDAR holds its exams, it will be difficult to resume until almost all of state restrictions have been lifted. MDAR has been looking into alternative methods for holding the exams, including having pest control companies host exams in company conference rooms. Late this week we learned from MDAR that they were adopting the concept of holding exams in parking lots with applicants remaining in their vehicles to achieve social distancing.

    With the onset of the pandemic making it plain that the method of holding exams was obsolete, MDAR announced that they had issued a request for proposals to establish an on-line proctored exam system to replace the OMR bubble sheet system that has been in use for decades. The new system will be very similar to those adopted in many other states that allow applicants to access examinations on demand and significantly reduce the amount of time necessary to complete the license process.

  • May 18, 2020 4:43 PM | Anonymous

    This information was sent to CCLA by a member who thought it would be of interest to our members:

  • May 18, 2020 4:31 PM | Anonymous

    See the latest updates on insect and disease activity in the landscape!
    While UMass Extension has had to temporarily suspend most of our on-campus and in-person services, our professional staff and the contributors to the Landscape Message are working remotely while following public health guidance to continue to provide useful and science-based information for landscapers, arborists, turf managers, nursery growers, garden designers, and other practitioners.

    The LANDSCAPE MESSAGE for May 15, 2020 has been posted.

  • May 18, 2020 4:29 PM | Anonymous

    Participate in the largest invasive species awareness effort in the U.S. Follow us on Facebook at @invasivespeciesweek, share your successes, and link your social posts with #NISAW or #InvasiveSpecies. Webinars daily at 12noon ET 

  • May 18, 2020 4:28 PM | Anonymous

    UMass Extension HortNotes for this week is full of info on common hydrangea pests, COVID-19 info for the hort trades and more.

  • April 30, 2020 3:45 PM | Anonymous

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