May 6, 2002
New Web site helps keep gardens growing
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. Gardeners looking for advice have a new online resource from the Purdue University Cooperative Extension Service.
Garden TIPS, an e-magazine for gardening information, can be found on the Web. Six main sections on the home page include garden flowers, fruits and vegetables, lawn care, landscape plants, insects, pests and diseases, and indoor plants.
"One of the advantages of Garden TIPS is that it's one-stop shopping," said B. Rosie Lerner, Purdue Extension consumer horticulturist. "Garden TIPS makes it easier to tap into all of Purdue's garden-related resources."
The site brings together information from Purdue's departments of horticulture, agronomy, entomology, and botany and plant pathology. Additionally, the site provides links to online Extension publications, a monthly garden calendar, county-based events and resources, children's activities and the Indiana Master Gardeners' Web site. Visitors can search for information by subject matter and submit questions to Purdue experts via e-mail.
Unlike many other gardening Web sites that are based on regional or national information, Garden TIPS provides specific information for Indiana. Visitors to the site also can subscribe to a free e-mail newsletter that delivers timely information and tips every two weeks.
According to the National Gardening Association, 64 percent of all U.S. households participate in one or more types of lawn and gardening activities. Lerner said Garden TIPS is just one more resource that Purdue Extension provides to serve gardening enthusiasts and to meet the increasing demand for this type of information.
"The interest is there, and the need is there," Lerner said.
The Web site also will serve as a resource for volunteer Master Gardeners who answer questions on gardening "answerlines" in many counties, said Ricky Kemery, horticulture educator in Allen County.
"Master Gardeners can check the site for information when answering questions, as well as refer people to the site," Kemery said. "This can be a powerful tool for us."
Visitors to the Indiana Flower and Patio Show in March were able to preview Garden TIPS via a computer touch-screen at Purdue Extension's "Plant Knowledge To Go" information booth.
"People were really interested," said Ginny Retzner, Purdue Agricultural Communication writer/editor who oversees the Web site and demonstrated Garden TIPS at the show. "They were looking for a helpful, useful site as a resource."
Writer: Olivia Maddox, (765) 496-3207, email@example.com
Sources: B. Rosie Lerner, (765) 494-1311, firstname.lastname@example.org
Ricky Kemery, (219) 481-6826, email@example.com
Ginny Retzner, (765) 494-6681, firstname.lastname@example.org
Ag Communications: (765) 494-2722; Beth Forbes, email@example.com; http://www.agriculture.purdue.edu/AgComm/public/agnews/
Related Web site:
Purdue News Service: (765) 494-2096; firstname.lastname@example.org