The International Master Gardener Conference convenes every two years and is host to Master Gardeners from throughout the United States, Canada and Korea. Within the framework of the bylaws, the conference is held on a rotational basis in the US and Canada to provide geographical fairness.
This past September I had the pleasure of attending the 2015 conference in Council Bluffs (Iowa) near Omaha, Nebraska.
Nearly 1,000 Master Gardeners and guests attended several keynote addresses, breakout sessions and field visitations to many areas of gardening interest. Several sessions were hands-on; participants left these sessions with take-home items – papercrete and hypertufa containers and landscape design sketches, as examples. These activities, along with networking mixers and the trade show, kept attendees busy for the 4-day event.
As a proposal reviewer for the international Search for Excellence, it was especially interesting to see the final winners for various outstanding gardening projects. Many Master Gardeners groups were rewarded for their hard work, creativity and endurance with their projects.
The planning staff for the 2015 IMGC Conference is to be commended for a job well done.
The 2017 IMGC Conference will be held in Portland, Oregon, from July 10-14. Oregon state MG Coordinator Gail Langellotto and her staff have much of this future conference now in place. To keep up-to-date please refer to blogs.oregonstate.edu/2017imgc.
Beginning plans are now underway for the 2019 IMGC Conference in Toronto, Canada. Tentative ideas involve a joint effort of the Canadian Master Gardeners with the Royal Botanical Gardens.
Yours in better gardens,
Leo H. Lubke, Ed.D.