Hurley ,WI. 2/21/08

Michigan and Wisconsin gardeners spent the evening learning how to go organic, and eliminating most if not all man made chemicals from their gardens. The instructor for the evening was Gardening Expert and Master Gardener Tom Syverud. The presentation began with question of how do you start your organic garden. It was pointed out that the first thing to do when starting your organic garden is to get a soil test. This item was discussed in Ironwoodinfo in last weeks question and answer segment. (click for that segment). Tom went on to explain that after knowing the results of your garden test you can then go on to make the necessary adjustments to your garden.
There are many ways to adjust your soil pH organically and Tom described them to the gardening group. He went into the organic options when dealing with plant diseases and garden pests. These procedures will be dealt with in future editions of They will also be archived on a leading national website for gardeners!
Mr. Syverud has worked for UW-Madison in northern Wisconsin for 30 years. After receiving his Masters degree in Soil Science from Madison, he worked for many years at the UW Ashland Agricultural Research Station managing the gardens and research projects, and conducting educational programs. For the past 13 years he has worked for University Extension, teaching the Master Gardener Class and working on international small-scale vegetable gardening projects in Kenya, Nicaragua, Jamaica and Haiti.
The evenings class was open to the public and was presented free of charge by the 46th Parallel Planters. The 46ers is a local gardening group with members residing from Saxon Wisconsin to White Pine, Michigan.

The 46th Parallel members held a business meeting prior to the evening's program. The members chose committee members to work on this years Perennial Plant Sale which will be held on May 10th . Some members had expressed concerned that the opening of the new Walmart in Ironwood might have an adverse effect on future sales. It was the opinion of most of the members that the club should go forward with the sale, as the perennials that they offered the public are local field grown plants which are more hardy to grow here in the Northwoods. The money raised by the plant sale is reinvested in the Northwoods, usually by providing free or heavily subsidized classes and gardening conferences. Last fall the 46ers in partnership with the Range Master Gardeners put on a Fall Gardening Conference that would be the envy of any community - anywhere! The gardening group also decided to make another bus trip to greenhouses located in Superior Wisconsin. Similar trips in the past have been enjoyed by many Northwoods gardeners.

The coming events planned by the 46th Parallel planters can be found at: and of course will also be posted in the calendar section of


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