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News and events around the Lake Champlain Valley of northern New York and Vermont and southern Quebec

Lake Champlain Transportation Announces Fare Increase for Ferries

 

Lake Champlain Transportation: Fare Increase for Ferries

Lake Champlain Transportation Announces Fare Increase for Ferries

 

 

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Lake Champlain Transportation Company (L.C.T.) announced fare increases for ferries crossing Lake Champlain at Charlotte, VT – Essex, NY and Grand Isle, VT – Cumberland Head, NY. The new rates will go into effect on  April 3rd.

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Lake Champlain Transportation Announces Fare Increase for Ferries

The last rate increase for the crossings at Charlotte/Essex and Grand Isle/Cumberland Head was in 2008.

The 30% commuter discount remains in effect.

The new rates will be as follows and do not include the fuel surcharge:

 

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Vehicle & Driver <19′ Long……………………………….$10.00

Adult Passenger……………………………………………..$4.00

Senior (65+) Passenger………………………..…………..$3.50

Child 6-12 Passenger……………………………………….$1.75

Vehicle & Driver > 19′ Long

Over 19′ to 27……………………….…………………….. $15.75

Over 27′ to 36′………………………………………………$21.75

Over 36′ to 45′………………………………………………$28.00

Over 45′ to 54′………………………………………………$33.75

Over 54′ to 63′………………………………………………$41.25

Over 63′ to 72′………………………………………………$49.50

Over 72′, add……………………………………………..….$1.30

Motorcycle & Driver………………………………………….$6.50

Adult Bicycle…………………..………………………………$5.00

Child Bicycle…………………..………………………………$2.75

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www.ferries.com for schedule information.

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Government Shutdown Affects Lake Champlain

How The Government Shutdown Affects Lake Champlain

The recent federal government shutdown has affected millions across the country, and the impact is being felt on Lake Champlain as well. Here are some of the impacts:

Government Shutdown Affects Lake ChamplainThe EPA’s (Environmental Protection Agency) new phosphorus reduction budget for Lake Champlain – TMDL or Total Maximum Daily Load. (See “Cleaner Water” article) was scheduled to be released in draft form later this month, but it’s not clear that they’ll be able to do it because of the shutdown. The draft plan will likely call for additional regulations on roads, stormwater permits, agricultural lands, and floodplain development, but authority for new regulations and funding for incentives has to be approved by the Vermont legislature, which doesn’t reconvene until January. The longer the draft plan is delayed, the less time the legislature will have to review and absorb requirements set forth in it.

Fall is the time for developing budget priorities for the state and federal government. The Lake Champlain Basin Program Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) identifies priority projects for funding. However, a half-dozen members of that body are federal employees who are furloughed and unable to participate in the process during the shutdown. The absence of their valuable knowledge and experience severely limits the TAC’s ability to outline the most critical immediate next steps in managing the lake.

Although Vermont’s duck hunting season began on October 9, one of the more popular hunting locations on Lake Champlain may not be open to the public this year. The Missisquoi National Wildlife Refuge in Franklin County Vermont has been closed as a result of the shutdown. No hunting or fishing is allowed in the refuge during the shutdown, and the Visitor Center has been shuttered.

Read the Lake Champlain Committee’s analysis of how the government shutdown affects Lake Champlain here…

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Phase Two Underway at Fort Ticonderoga

Phase Two Underway at Fort Ticonderoga(Ticonderoga, NY) – Phase two of Fort Ticonderoga’s three-phase master plan is underway as America’s Fort begins to develop new, innovative, and exciting guest experiences.


Phase two, the product development phase, kicked off in mid-February as the Fort’s leaders of interpretation, collections, education, management, and board met with PGAV Destinations, the firm developing the destination’s 10-year-master plan, to begin designing new and bold offerings.

“Product development is the most exciting part of a destination’s master plan,” says PGAV Destinations VP and project lead, Tom Owen. “It’s where we collaborate creatively with their team to push the envelope in all areas of their operation, to stretch everyone’s thinking, and generate ideas that will shape the future of Fort Ticonderoga.”

The team will spend the spring and summer investigating new ideas that would impact all aspects of the guest experience – including interpretation, exhibits,  events, retail, dining, guest flow, and more. PGAV and the Fort hope to begin testing these concepts with the public starting in late summer 2013.

Initially, the team is concentrating on developing major themes and drawing from the Fort’s unique assets, which include 2,000 acres of pristine Adirondack landscape overlooking Lake Champlain and the Green Mountains of Vermont. One of the early planning sessions highlighted the importance of integrating all of the Fort’s properties into a unique destination experience that utilizes trails, water, and other modes of transportation. Early planning also emphasized further development of the “learning campus” concept which includes physical, off-site, and virtual initiatives.

 “The goal of this phase is to envision new features that will simply create an exemplary experience for all of our guests for decades to come,” says Beth Hill, president and CEO at Fort Ticonderoga. “By constantly innovating and improving what our visitors and long-time supporters engage in at Fort Ticonderoga, we can generate higher attendance and income, thereby fueling more investment and improvement as well as best serving our educational mission.”

About PGAV Destinations 

PGAV Destinations is a global leader in the planning and design of unique destinations. Now in its fifth decade, the practice has evolved to become the ideal destination-consulting partner, skilled at developing growth-oriented master plans and translating those plans into successful projects. No other firm offers such an integrated approach to destination planning.

PGAV’s key clients include industry leaders such as Delaware North Companies, SeaWorld Parks and Entertainment, the Biltmore Companies, Bass Pro Shops, Ameristar Casinos, Universal Studios, The Gettysburg Foundation, the Saint Louis Zoo, and many others. Recent assignments include planning and design at many of the world’s “must see” destinations, including the Grand Canyon, Biltmore Estate, Kennedy Space Center, Hearst Castle, the Georgia Aquarium, the Hoover Dam, and SeaWorld Adventure Parks.  www.PGAVDestinations.com

About Fort Ticonderoga: America’s FortTM

Located on Lake Champlain in the beautiful six million acre Adirondack Park, Fort Ticonderoga is a not-for-profit historic site and museum that ensures that present and future generations learn from the struggles, sacrifices, and victories that shaped the nations of North America and changed world history. Serving the public since 1909, Fort Ticonderoga engages more than 70,000 visitors annually and is dedicated to the preservation and interpretation of FortTiconderoga’s history. Accredited by the American Association of Museums, Fort Ticonderoga offers programs, historic interpretation, tours, demonstrations, and exhibits throughout the year and is open for daily visitation May 17 through October 20, 2013. The 2013 season features the Fort’s newest exhibit “It would make a heart of stone melt” Sickness, Injury, and Medicine at Fort Ticonderoga which explores early medical theory, practice, and experience as each relates to the armies that served at Fort Ticonderoga in the 18th century. Visit www.FortTiconderoga.org for a full list of ongoing programs or call 518-585-2821. Fort Ticonderoga is located at 100 Fort Ti Road, Ticonderoga, New York.

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Butternut Hill Natural Area: Nature Snapshot

New Nature Snapshot

From Butternut Hill Natural Area

Butternut Hill Natural Area: Snapshot

Have you visited Butternut Hill Natural Area, our newest conserved public area in North Hero, VT, yet?  If not, here’s a great excuse!

 

Our newest Nature Snapshot series focuses on Butternut Hill Natural Area.  These snapshots demonstrate the diversity of wildlife that rely on floodplain forest habitats.

 

Check out the snapshots here, and then hike the trail to see if you can spot any of the featured animals.

 

Updated 4/3/13

 


Fort Ticonderoga Expands Interpretive Department

Fort Ticonderoga’s Interpretive Department Grows to Serve Expanding Audience

Fort Ticonderoga’s Interpretive Department Grows to Serve Expanding Audience

Fort Ticonderoga is excited to announce two new additions to its year-round Interpretive Department staff. Shaun Pekar, Artificer Shoemaker, and Cameron Green, Military Programs Supervisor, recently joined the Fort Ticonderoga Interpretive Department.

Stuart Lilie, Fort Ticonderoga’s Director of Interpretation, said “These two individuals bring 18thcentury specific knowledge and broad vision for public education to Fort Ticonderoga’s strategic drive to bring day to day historic details to life at Fort Ticonderoga, one of America’s oldest and most significant historic sites in North America.” He noted their “Skills and leadership allow the Fort to continue creating living history programs and events for visitors that are exciting and interesting. Equally important, the Interpretive Department is able to emphasize FortTiconderoga’s commitment to excellence and historical accuracy as we portray those soldiers who struggled and died on this ground.”

Shaun Pekar’s background in archaeology informs his reproduction work in shoemaking and other period crafts with a visceral understanding of real excavated artifacts. A North Country native, Pekar brings his extensive living history experience, discerning eye, mechanical skill, and passion for public education to this vital historic trade.

A recent Sienna College graduate, Cameron Green applies his campus leadership and event coordination experience to military programs at FortTiconderoga. His youthful vigor is matched by his experience as an Interpretive Ranger with Saratoga National Historic Park and carpentry and farm intern with Colonial Williamsburg, as well as a lifelong pursuit of living history.

“Fort Ticonderoga’s brand as the leader in 18th century military historical interpretation was clearly identified in the Fort’s recently completed Phase 1 Comprehensive Plan,” said Beth Hill, President and CEO. “Relentlessly authentic in its approach, Fort Ticonderoga is seeing tremendous demand for its programs which are reaching new and growing audiences. The increased staff capacity enables Fort Ticonderoga to implement new year-round programs and supports the commitment to a dynamic experience for all Fort guests.”

Fort Ticonderoga’s growth as an educational leader and major cultural destination will continue to expand in 2013 with a number of new tours integrating the site’s landscape, special programs, and behind-the scene experiences.  To learn more about the 2013 season visit www.fortticonderoga.org or call 518-585-2821.

 

FORT TICONDEROGA

America’s Fort

Located on Lake Champlain in the beautiful 6 million acre Adirondack Park, Fort Ticonderoga is a not-for-profit historic site and museum that ensures that present and future generations learn from the struggles, sacrifices, and victories that shaped the nations of North America and changed world history. Serving the public since 1909, Fort Ticonderoga engages more than 70,000 visitors annually and is dedicated to the preservation and interpretation of FortTiconderoga’s history.  Accredited by the American Association of Museums, Fort Ticonderoga offers programs, historic interpretation, tours, demonstrations, and exhibits throughout the year and is open for daily visitation May 17 through October 20, 2013. The 2013 season features the Fort’s newest exhibit “It would make a heart of stone melt” Sickness, Injury, and Medicine at Fort Ticonderogawhich explores early medical theory, practice, and experience as each relates to the armies that served at Fort Ticonderoga in the 18th century.  Visit www.FortTiconderoga.org for a full list of ongoing programs or call 518-585-2821. Fort Ticonderoga is located at 100 Fort Ti Road, Ticonderoga, New York.

Water Flows Downhill

March 12th – At dusk today I left my home with my camera and the puppy to see what was happening with the water.  Spring thaw was in full swing and it had been raining most of the day and I had to head out to the Rock River to get some water samples for our study that we have been conducting for the past 3 years.  It was still raining when I left the house.  I started up the hill from my house in St. Albans toward High Street.  Right away I saw water sheeting across the road and down the other side moving debris, leaves and other items.  I then headed up towards Prospect Street.  Friends of Northern Lake Champlain and the City of St. Albans have grant from Green Mountain Coffee Roasters to look at storm water solutions for Prospect Street.  After what I saw tonight, I am really glad this is an area that has been identified by Paul Madden and Julie Moore and the City of St. Albans to fix.

Water Flows Downhill

Water Flows Downhill - Lake Champlain Life

A river from Hard’Ack draining across the Cassavant’s lawn across Prospect street and down to the Lake.

The water was gushing down off Hard’Ack between the Casavant’s and Cioffi’s House and forming a stream.  I wondered to myself if that stream always appears in the spring or if this was a first.  Funny what you don’t notice if it is not your job to notice.  It got me thinking about how water runs downhill.   If you have a house or use a car and drive on the roads or even if you live in a valley.  Water somehow has to flow by you or your property or the roads you drive on to get to the basin.  The basin we live in is Lake Champlain and that basin is in trouble and that basin is our responsibility.  We all need to be part of the solution.  Again, I started thinking about how many people may not even see or notice this if it is not their job or if they do not see or visit the Lake.  I am not sure I realized what kind of trouble the lake was in until we started spending time down there at our summer camp.  I hear stories about how the Bay Park in St. Albans used to attract hundreds of people 50 years ago.  You would be lucky to find 10 people on a beautiful summer day in July.  So what’s happened and why are so few people noticing?This blog is my exploration of these questions and more.  It will be an informal blog with ideas, discussions, thoughts, and what I’m working on with Friends of Northern Lake Champlain.  I hope that this sparks ways that you might be able to join us in this work.  I know tonight when I was driving from St. Albans through Sheldon and then into Highgate to the Rock River, I felt overwhelmed by the brown water flowing down hill.

Water Flows Downhill - Lake Champlain Life

Rock River – running through and over our land.How can we solve this – can we solve this?  The change in land management on farms, increased impervious surfaces in town, and even in rural areas, has increased the amount of runoff and with that runoff come pollution and some of that pollution that drains off of our lands and winds up in the lake.  This what is causing some of the most detrimental health problems in Lake Champlain!  Driving around tonight is what has inspired me to start to write this blog.  Maybe I can help be other people’s eyes and conscience about water and explain what I see and observe.  The Friends of Northern Lake Champlain (FNLC) is a local non-profit organization dedicated to reducing the amount of run-off in our watershed.  We have been working with farmers, government agencies, citizens and municipalities for the past 11 years on practices that will help to reduce run-off from the land.  For more information on this project and how you can get involved in our organization and support our mission, please contact Denise Smith, Executive Director at denisefnlc@gmail.comLake Champlain reflects you, reflects us all.  Our reflection looks better in clean water.  Make it happen. 

This post was originally published by the Friends of Northern Lake Champlain

Fort Ticonderoga: 37 Area Students Advance to New York State History Day Contest

Area Students Advance to New York State History Day Contest
Mar 12, 2013

Fort Ticonderoga

Thirty-seven middle and high school students from the North Country won top prizes at North Country History Day on Saturday, March 9, at Fort Ticonderoga’s Deborah Clarke Mars Education Center. These students will advance to compete at New York State History Day in Cooperstown on April 29.

“What a great day!” said Rich Strum, the Fort’s Director of Education, and also serves as North Country Regional Coordinator for New York State History Day. “Not only was it exciting to see student projects, but it was great to see students from throughout the region sharing with each other their common interest in history and what history can teach us about ourselves. Each and every student participant invested a great deal of time and energy in historical research and creating compelling projects reflecting this year’s them of ‘Turning Points in History: People, Ideas, Events.’”

Junior Division (Grades 6-8) North Country Regional winners include:

  • Clare Fowler, from Greenwich Central School, took first place in the Historical Paper category with her paper “Kristallnacht.”
  • Francis Kneussle, from Peru Middle School, took first place in the Individual Documentary category with his documentary “Valley Forge: From Farms to Arms.”
  • Dan Brierly, Jesse Tefft, Amanda Ennis, and Samantha Boyea, from Greenwich Central School, took first place in the Group Performance category with their performance “History Repeats Itself.”
  • Riley Manso and Zachary Spaulding, from St. Mary’s School in Ticonderoga, took second place in the Group Performance category with their performance “Walt Disney.”
  • Rosalind Elizabeth Maguire, from Greenwich Central School, took first place in the Individual Exhibit category with her exhibit “Racial Segregation.”
  • Eamoon Goodfellow, from Peru Middle School, took second place in the Individual Exhibit category with his exhibit “Ronald Reagan and the Rise of Conservativism in America.”
  • Clayton Spaulding, Natalie O’Neil, and Sebastian Sprouse, from St. Mary’s School in Ticonderoga, took first place in the Group Exhibit category with their exhibit “Gettysburg.”
  • Nicholas Manfred, from Moriah Central School, took first place in the Individual Website category with his website “Martin Luther King, Jr.”
  • Alexis Hutchins, Madison McBride, and Kyleigh Bell took first place in the Group Website category with their website “Nellie Bly: A Madhouse Exposé.”
  • Kathleen O’Neill and Ronald O’Neill, from St. Mary’s School in Ticonderoga, took second place in the Group Website category with their website “Irish Potato Famine.”

Senior Division (Grades 9-12) North Country Regional winners include:

  • Jamie Vogt, Liam Bell, and Taylor Morse, from Peru High School, took first place in the Group Documentary category with their documentary “Smallpox: The First Vaccine.”
  • Ethan Depo, from Peru High School, took first place in the Individual Exhibit category with his exhibit “D-Day Deception.”
  • Melissa Paris, from Mountainside Christian Academy in Schroon Lake, took second place in the Individual Exhibit category with her exhibit “The Automobile.”
  • Alexandra Lashway, Shonna Provoncha, Karla Hayes, Tanner Conely, and Jarron Boyle, from Moriah Central School, took first place in the Group Exhibit category with their exhibit “The Birth of the Electric Age.”
  • Darcy Smith and Tyler Andre, from Peru High School, took second place in the Group Exhibit category with their exhibit “The Red Cross: Clara Barton.”
  • Dylan Scozzafava, Jonathan Brassard, Cole Gaddor, Kyle Gifaldi, and Thomas Yakalis, from Moriah Central School, took first place in the Group Website category with their website “Saratoga: Turning Point of the American Revolution.”

A special prize for the best use of primary sources, sponsored by the “Ticonderoga, the First 250 Years” Committee, was awarded to Alice Cochran, from Moriah Central School, for her Individual Exhibit entry “The British Invasion.”

Participating schools included Edison Home School, Greenwich Central School, Moriah Central School, Mountainside Christian Academy (Schroon Lake), Peru High School, Peru Middle School, and St. Mary’s School (Ticonderoga). A total of 55 students with 28 entries participated in North Country Regional History Day.

National History Day is the nation’s leading program for history education in schools. The program annually engages 2 million people in 48 states, the District of Columbia, and Guam. Students research history topics of their choice related to an annual theme and create exhibits, documentaries, performances, research papers, and website designs. They may enter in competition at the regional, state, and national level. Participants include students in grades 6-8 in the Junior Division and grades 9-12 in the Senior Division. National History Day also provides educational services to students and teachers, including a summer internship program, curricular materials, internet resources, and annual teacher workshops and training institutes.

FortTiconderoga hosts teacher workshops about History Day each fall in the North Country and Regional Coordinator Rich Strum is available to meet with teachers at their schools to introduce the program. According to an article in the Wall Street Journal in 2011, “Students who participate in National History Day—actually a year-long program that gets students in grades 6-12 doing historical research—consistently outperform their peers on state standardized tests, not only in social studies but in science and math as well.”

Teachers and students from Clinton, Essex, Franklin, and Warren counties interested in participating in North Country History Day during the 2013-14 school year should contact Rich Strum, North Country Regional Coordinator for New York State History Day, at rstrum@fort-ticonderoga.org or at (518) 585-6370.

FORT TICONDEROGA

America’s Fort

Located on Lake Champlain in the beautiful 6 million acre Adirondack Park, Fort Ticonderoga is a not-for-profit historic site and museum that ensures that present and future generations learn from the struggles, sacrifices, and victories that shaped the nations of North America and changed world history. Serving the public since 1909, Fort Ticonderoga engages more than 70,000 visitors annually and is dedicated to the preservation and interpretation of Fort Ticonderoga’s history.  Accredited by the American Association of Museums, Fort Ticonderoga offers programs, historic interpretation, tours, demonstrations, and exhibits throughout the year and is open for daily visitation May 17 through October 20, 2013. The 2013 season features the Fort’s newest exhibit “It would make a heart of stone melt” Sickness, Injury, and Medicine at Fort Ticonderogawhich explores early medical theory, practice, and experience as each relates to the armies that served at Fort Ticonderoga in the 18thcentury.  Visit www.FortTiconderoga.org for a full list of ongoing programs or call 518-585-2821. Fort Ticonderoga is located at 100 Fort Ti Road, Ticonderoga, New York.

America’s Fort is a registered trademark of the Fort Ticonderoga Association.

Photo: Alice Cochran, from Moriah Central School, was awarded a special prize for the best use of primary sources in her North Country History Day project “The British Invasion.” On March 9, 55 students from seven regional schools participated in North Country History Day held at Fort Ticonderoga. Pictured are: June Curtis from the “Ticonderoga, the First 250 Years” Committee, which sponsored the award, Alice Cochran, and North Country History Day regional coordinator Rich Strum.

Fort Ticonderoga wins grant from Champlain National Bank

Champlain National Bank Grant Awarded to Fort Ticonderoga

Champlain National Bank Grant Awarded to Fort Ticonderoga

Fort Ticonderoga recently received a grant from Champlain National Bank supporting school outreach programs in several northern New York communities in 2013.

“Fort Ticonderoga, recognized as one of America’s most significant historic sites, is the gem of the North Country,” said Joe Shaw, President and CEO of Champlain National Bank.  “We are so happy to increase awareness of this tremendous educational resource that we have in our region.”

Funding from Champlain National Bank will enable fourth grade classes at schools in Crown Point, Elizabethtown, Keene, Lake Placid, Westport, and Willsboro to bring an Interpreter from Fort Ticonderoga into the classroom to share the experience of being a soldier on the Lake Champlain frontier during the American Revolution. During the program students learn about the daily life of soldiers. Students have a hands-on experience with high-quality reproductions that Continental soldiers carried during the Revolution. Students obtain an understanding of the purpose and function of each item and the larger concepts related to service in America’s War for Independence.

“The most effective way for students to learn about their history is for them to experience it,” said Beth Hill, Fort Ticonderoga’s President and CEO. “This expeditionary learning program connects students to a variety of inter-disciplinary topics and activities through the lens of FortTiconderoga’s history and helps teachers meet core curriculum goals.”

Funding will be available on a first-come, first-served basis for Crown Point Central School, Elizabethtown-Lewis Central School, Keene Central School, Lake Placid Central School, Westport Central School, and Willsboro Central School. Funding support from Champlain National Bank covers all the program costs, including mileage.

Fort Ticonderoga offers outreach programs throughout the school year in northeastern New York and western Vermont. To learn more about programs for students and teachers from FortTiconderoga visit www.fortticonderoga.org and select the “Explore and Learn” tab. Teachers interested in learning more about school programs, including outreach programs, should contact Rich Strum, Director of Education, at rstrum@fort-ticonderoga.org or at 518-585-6370.

 

FORT  TICONDEROGA

America’s Fort

Located on Lake Champlain in the beautiful 6 million acre Adirondack Park, Fort Ticonderoga is a not-for-profit historic site and museum that ensures that present and future generations learn from the struggles, sacrifices, and victories that shaped the nations of North America and changed world history. Serving the public since 1909, Fort Ticonderoga engages more than 70,000 visitors annually and is dedicated to the preservation and interpretation of Fort Ticonderoga’s history.  Accredited by the American Association of Museums, Fort Ticonderoga offers programs, historic interpretation, tours, demonstrations, and exhibits throughout the year and is open for daily visitation May 17 through October 20, 2013. The 2013 season features the Fort’s newest exhibit “It would make a heart of stone melt” Sickness, Injury, and Medicine at Fort Ticonderoga which explores early medical theory, practice, and experience as each relates to the armies that served at Fort Ticonderoga in the 18th century.  Visit www.FortTiconderoga.org for a full list of ongoing programs or call 518-585-2821. Fort Ticonderoga is located at 100 Fort Ti Road, Ticonderoga, New York.

Owl Hoot Hike Success

Owl Hoot Hike Success

Barred Owl photo courtesy the Lake Champlain Land Trust

 

We had an awesome turnout for our Owl Hoot Hike on Friday, March 1st at Niquette Bay State Park in Colchester, VT!  We enjoyed a stroll down to Lake Champlain, listened for owls, and one group was lucky enough to hear some owls call back. 

 

Thanks to everyone who braved the elements, and a special thank you to Park Ranger Lisa Liotta and Park Supervisor Rob Peterson for allowing us to use the trails after dark.

 

If you were unable to attend this year’s Owl Hoot Hike, we plan on hosting another Owl Hoot next breeding season (February 2014). 

 

Our next hike will be a Wildflower Hunt in partnership with the South Hero Land Trust at Round Pond Natural Area in South Hero, VT on Saturday, April 27th.  Stay tuned for more details as the date gets closer!

 

Updated 3/4/13

 


Winter Seed Starting at The Shelburne Museum

At last, I can once again get my hands in the dirt and get this new gardening season started! I know what you’re thinking, it’s winter! But I have to get an early start if I want beautiful, robust plants come planting time in May.
I’ve recieved the Geranium seed I ordered in January, and because they need a long growing time before they are ready to be planted in the garden, I have to sow these seeds now!
It’s only been 4 days since I sowed the seeds and already they have started germinating!
With the exact growing conditions that they require, you will have great success.
At the end of each growing season I winter over a supply of geraniums which I keep growing on a sunny windowsill. Geraniums make great winter houseplants, all they need is bright light, fertilizer every now and then, and very little water. I use mine to take cuttings from. It’s a quick and easy way to duplicate the number of geranium plants you have, and it saves you a lot of money too.
To take a cutting, select a 2-4 inch length of stem and cut it off above a leaf. Peel off the bottom leaves on the stem and any flower buds, leaving 2 leaves at the top.
To improve success rates, dip the base of each cutting in a small amount of rooting hormone to stimulate root growth. Press the cutting into the bed of soil and press the soil firmly around the plant so that the stem is supported and until it begins to grow a new root system. Space the cuttings out about three inches to give them room to grow.
Put the new cuttings in a warm location but not in direct light. Do not cover the plants, as this can encourage mildew to develop on the leaves. Water the cuttings sparingly for the first week and then increase watering to keep soil moist.
In about 4-5 weeks, you should feel some resistance when you gently tug on the cuttings. This tells you the cuttings have rooted and can soon be transplanted in a bigger pot and be exposed to more direct sunlight. At that time we will be moving all the young plants out to our greenhouse.
Jess Gallas
Shelburne Museum Head Gardener
This article originally appeared on The Shelburne Museum Blog

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