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Dewayne L. Ingram

This presentation focuses on driving forces and philosophies in the current Age of Accountability and explores ideas of how to respond. The increased scrutiny faced by all public agencies is requiring that Cooperative Extension approach the issue of accountability a bit differently. We must articulate our objectives and values to specific clientele groups, the general public, and government officials. Hard questions are being asked about past and anticipated return on tax dollars invested in state and federal agencies. The Government Performance and Results Act of 1993 requires “performance based budgeting” for all federal agencies, including the USDA. Each federal agency must develop an action plan with well-defined objectives and anticipated impacts to justify the allocation of federal funds. The overriding theme is not how busy we are and how many activities we can report, but what has been the impact of our efforts.

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B.R. Bondada, J.P. Syvertsen, L. Albrigo, A. Alva, and P. Petracek

Foliar applications of urea nitrogen (N) is a relatively new practice in Florida citrus production resulting from applied research and changes in citrus fertilizer management philosophy. The present study investigated the effect of leaf age and surface morphology on leaf wettability as measured by contact angles, and absorption efficiency of foliar-applied N. Young leaves (0.25 and 1 month) were more efficient than old leaves in the absorption of foliar-applied N. Contact angles of water, urea-, and triazone-N solutions were low in the young leaves. The adaxial surfaces had lower contact angles than abaxial surfaces in each leaf age group. Inefficient N absorption and large contact angles in old leaves (3 and 6 months) were related to surface wax deposition and cuticle thickness, which increased with leaf age. 15N- and 14C-labeled urea are being used to determine precisely how the cuticle and wax affect foliar N absorption in citrus leaves.

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J.J. Ferguson

The experience and resources of extension specialists can be used in academic teaching programs within a horticultural managers' seminar for advanced undergraduate students, drawing on production, marketing, sales, and distribution managers to discuss application of horticultural principles in work situations and other complex issues facing agricultural managers. Guest speakers present an overview of their background, work responsibilities, management philosophy, and management practices. Students interact with speakers in this informal seminar and complete written evaluations of speakers and topics for discussion in later classes. This horticultural managers' seminar exposes students to the medley of problems and opportunities facing agricultural managers, uses the resources of extension faculty in academic teaching programs, and reinforces ties between commodity departments and their respective industries.

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Dennis R. Decoteau

A one-credit course, Writing in Horticulture, was developed and taught to graduate students in the Dept. of Horticulture at Clemson Univ. The course focused on discussion and explanation of the philosophies and methods of writing in the horticulture field. Discussions included a review of writing mechanics, types of writing and audiences, examples of exemplary writings, editing and reviewing, and examples and methods of professional correspondence. Real-life writing experiences were emphasized. Hands-on activities included writing and reviewing peer manuscripts and grant proposals. Three original written works were completed by the end of the semester: 1) a popular press article, 2) a grant proposal (maximum three pages long), and 3) an abstract for a manuscript published previously in a scientific journal.

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Michael N. Dana, Paul C. Siciliano, and John L. Larson

International travel and study courses for undergraduate students can be significant academic learning experiences if there is a well-defined curriculum and high expectations for student performance on homework exercises, class discussions and evaluation instruments. An interdisciplinary perspective serves to broaden students' understanding. “In the English Landscape” is a three-credit, 4-week undergraduate course in-residence, primarily in Corsham, Wiltshire, U.K. Students explore the history of English landscapes and gardens in the context of post-medieval British history. The course is team-taught every other year by Purdue faculty from the Horticulture, History and Landscape Architecture programs. Excursions to landscape, garden and cultural sites provide the primary basis for student discovery. Pretravel readings and lectures prepare students for in-country, site-specific worksheets and class discussions. Course philosophy, content, structure, logistics, and instructional materials, which may be useful as a basis for course development by educators at other institutions, are presented.

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H.O. Oselebe, A. Tenkouano, M. Pillay, I.U. Obi, and M.I. Uguru

for Doctor of Philosophy of H.O. Oselebe at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka.

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David Creech

The mission of the SFASU Arboretum is to promote the conservation, selection, and use of the native plants of Texas and to encourage diversity in the urban landscape philosophy of the region. A decade since its inception, the 10-acre arboretum features many uncommon, unusual, and difficult-to-find species and cultivars, many deserving greater use in the region. The living collection has been acquired through botanical gardens, arboretums, private collections, the nursery industry, and expeditions. The list of promising plants that have surfaced includes many that are not easily available in the trade. The issues involved in woody and herbaceous plant evaluation include computer mapping and record keeping constraints, the long-time frame for evaluation with many woody plants, and difficulties in propagation. The arboretums's plant acquisition policy and record keeping and computer mapping system is currently tracking more than 2500 taxa in the living collection. An overview of the first decade of plant performance and a strategic plan for acquisition, propagation, evaluation, distribution, and promotion are presented.

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Diane Relf, Sheri Dorn, Laurie DeMarco, Kate Dobbs, and Marcy Schnitzer

Through a CyberServe Grant, a WWW Home Page and student/community listserve were established as core communication tools for a special study taught Spring 1997, Hort 4984, Horticulture and the Community: Professional Growth through Volunteering. It incorporated the Blacksburg Electronic Village to easily put student volunteers and the community programs they worked with in direct contact with each other, allowing an exchange of ideas that made them equal partners in their endeavors. It provided direct access to valuable information to understand the principles and philosophy behind programming efforts for both students and community sites where they volunteered. It also was a recruiting tool to involve other students and the Horticulture Club in service-learning projects because students in the class could post “help” notices to entice classmates to participate in defined projects. It provided students with knowledge and experience in the role of the Internet in enhancing the quality of life in their communities. Information installed on the site included reading materials on Horticultural Therapy, children's gardening, community gardening, science education through gardening, and volunteering in these areas; community site descriptions and slides, program activities, goals of program participants, and materials from the program (i.e., selected first-grade drawings of their garden); students participating in the class and information about them; goals, objectives, and management information on the course; and links to relevant information from around the world to put the activities of the students in an international framework.

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Carol Dawson and J.M. Zajicek

The Green Brigade, organized by the Bexar County Agricultural Extension Service in San Antonio, Texas, is a community-based horticultural program for juvenile offenders based on the earn while learning philosophy. This study determined if participation in the Green Brigade Program improved self-esteem, locus of control, interpersonal relationships, and attitudes toward school, toward gardening and toward the environment as well as decreased recidivism of juvenile offenders. To measure psychological variables, a pre-test, post-test design was implemented using the Self-Report of Personality from The Behavior Assessment System for Children (BASC). A questionnaire, developed by the researchers, measured environmental attitudes as well as basic horticultural knowledge. Youths participating in the Green Brigade were pre-tested on the first day of the session and post-tested on the final day of the 6-month session. Comparisons were made between children based on age, ethnic background, gender, and session of the Green Brigade in which they participated. Results determined the relationship between participation in the Green Brigade and the dependent variables mentioned previously.

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William E. Klingeman, David B. Eastwood, John R. Brooker, Charles R. Hall, Bridget K. Behe, and Patricia R. Knight

A survey was administered to assess plant characteristics that consumers consider important when selecting landscape plants for purchase. Visitors to home and garden shows in Knoxville and Nashville, Tenn.; Detroit, Mich.; and Jackson, Miss., completed 610 questionnaires. Respondents also indicated their familiarity with integrated pest management (IPM) concepts, pest control philosophy, recognition of flowering dogwood (Cornus florida) pests and diseases, including dogwood powdery mildew (Microsphaera pulchra), and willingness-to-pay a price differential for a powdery-mildew-resistant flowering dogwood. Fewer than half of the respondents in any city indicated familiarity with IPM, although they were familiar with organic farming and pest scouting components of an IPM program. Willingness-to-pay was relatively consistent across all four locations. The uniformity of average tree premiums, which ranged from $11.87 in Jackson to $16.38 in Detroit, supports the proposition that customers are willing to pay a substantially higher price for a landscape tree that will maintain a healthier appearance without the use of chemical sprays. Factors affecting consumer demand for landscape nursery products and services can be paired with consumer awareness of IPM terminology and practices to create an effective market strategy for newly developed powdery-mildew-resistant dogwood cultivars.