Miracle Gro Employee Faces 90-Day Sentence in Pesticide Scandal

Sad Story Points to a Larger Problem with Pesticide Registration 

Standing by the company’s assertion that one employee acted alone in a multi-year pesticide scandal that helped bring unprecedented fines from the United States government, Miracle Gro’s director of public affairs sought to clarify the issue in a phone call today to the SafeLawns offices.

“There’s never been any evidence uncovered by anyone, not the federal investigators or the judge, that anyone other than Sheila Kendrick was responsible (for the mislabeling of pesticides),” said Miracle Gro’s Lance Latham, while acknowledging that some of the facts in the case are hard to believe. “Everything that you and others have said about Sheila are true in that she was a respected employee of the company. When word started to get around that she was responsible, many of us defended her at first. Her actions seemed so out of character.”

“A WONDERFUL PERSON”

A deaconess and current employee of the Kingdome Christian Center Church in Columbus, Ohio, Kendrick began working for Scotts in 1992. When the company was busted in 2008 for selling millions of dollars of mislabled pesticides — leading in part to the largest set of pesticide fines ($12.5 million) ever handed down by the federal government  — Kendrick was soon fired and, earlier this year, offered up a guilty plea to avoid a trial in exchange for a 90-day prison sentence.

When the sentencing day came Friday, however, her friends, family and fellow church members and staffers couldn’t contain their emotions. This was not a woman who fit anyone’s criminal profile. Even her parole officer reportedly recommended a suspended sentence, with just a single day of jail time.

“Sheila is a wonderful person,” said her attorney David Axelrod, who spoke with SafeLawns today.

“Her job at our church will be waiting for her when she returns,” said the Reverend Lonnie Keene, who asked to judge to set aside any prison sentence based on his employee’s character.

The judge in the case didn’t budge and stuck to the 90-day plea bargain, noting that Kendrick could have faced up to six years in prison and a $350,000 fine given the severity of the felony to which she admitted. Nearly $40 million worth of illegal products known as, among others, Miracle-Gro Shake ’n’ Feed with Weed Preventer All Purpose Plant Food and Turf Builder Plus 2 Max reportedly made it to the marketplace based on her falsified documentation.

“WIDESPREAD COMPANY NONCOMPLIANCE”

The EPA’s subsequent fines and rhetoric were stunning in a Sept. 7 press release.

The misuse or mislabeling of pesticide products can cause serious illness in humans and be toxic to wildlife,” said Cynthia Giles, assistant administrator for EPA’s Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance. “Today’s sentence and unprecedented civil settlement hold Scotts accountable for widespread company noncompliance with pesticide laws.”

On that same day Scotts was also fined for the sales of millions of dollars worth of bird seed that was tainted with pesticides known to be toxic to birds. Kendrick was not implicated in that matter, but rather Scotts has said three other employees were collectively responsible.

“As the world’s largest marketer of residential use pesticides, Scotts has a special obligation to make certain that it observes the laws governing the sale and use of its products. For having failed to do so, Scotts has been sentenced to pay the largest fine in the history of FIFRA enforcement,” said Ignacia S. Moreno, assistant attorney general for the Environment and Natural Resources Division of the Department of Justice.

Citing a lack of any apparent financial or vindictive motive, many current and past employees at Miracle Gro still have a hard time believing that Kendrick knowingly misled the federal government — without the knowledge of a superior or anyone.

In court Friday, Kendrick’s attorney told the judge his client fell behind in her work and was too proud to ask for help. Falsifying the records was Kendrick’s way of dealing with the mountain of paperwork involved in pesticide registration.

“This is a woman who, for years, did her job very, very well,” said Axelrod. “She was too embarrassed to admit she couldn’t keep up.”

Latham said Miracle Gro denounces any suggestion that Kendrick might be part of a larger conspiracy or company culture, as SafeLawns and others have suggested in the past — or as the “widespread company noncompliance” comment from the EPA would indicate.

“We don’t have any problem in general with your blog; we know we have disagreements and we respect that,” said Latham during an amiable exchange. “But we frankly reject the misrepresentation of facts in this case as being anything other than one employee acting alone.”

Kendrick politely declined to speak to SafeLawns about the matter in a phone call in September. In court Friday, according to published reports, she wiped tears from her eyes and said, “I’m extremely remorseful and very sorry.”

PART OF A BROKEN SYSTEM?

It’s a sad story the company and its former employee both wish would go away — and there’s no joy to be had in invoking Sheila Kendrick’s name any further. Imagine the anguish of the last four years she has endured.

Yet the story needs to be told. Is Scotts Miracle Gro adequately staffing its pesticide registration department to meet its workload? Has it truly put procedures in place so no one in Sheila Kendrick’s position can falsify so many documents for so many years without anyone knowing?

Scotts Miracle Gro and the environmental community will probably always disagree about whether or not pesticides are ever really safe, labeled properly or not, but that’s not really the point here. The Kendrick case, the bird seed issue and numerous other company matters are making many folks question a pattern of Scotts Miracle Gro behavior. Is it, as the EPA says, a “widespread company noncompliance” issue?

“How can we trust you after this egregious breech of the public’s trust?,” wrote Gail Langellotto, a master gardener coordinator from Oregon State University in an open letter to Miracle Gro. “What should I tell the Master Gardeners that I teach?  What should I tell the clients who come to us for objective, reliable advice? Until we can be sure that your products are reliable and legal, how can we in good conscience recommend them to our clients?”

They’re all fair questions.

In fairness to Scotts Miracle Gro, though, the company is just one, albeit large, part of a broken system that our federal government has maintained unfettered for years. Tens of thousands of pesticide product labels sift through the hands of overwhelmed state and federal regulators who barely have time to ink their rubber stamps, much less validate the documents.

“Herbicide Regulation Works on Trust, Not Verification,” read the headline in the Columbus, Ohio, newspaper when the Kendrick story first broke in April of 2008. In that article Matt Beal, chief of the Ohio Department of Agriculture’s pesticide and fertilizer division, said his office doesn’t check U.S. EPA registration numbers. The state, like most others outside of New York and California, relies on companies to send in proper documentation.

“We have roughly about 13,000 pesticides registered in the state,” he said. “We have to register them each year.”

Many states only have one or two employees to monitor that task, just as Scotts only had one employee pushing through a pile of paperwork. In the Kendrick case, the products for which she admitted the forgery were eventually legally registered across the country. The company and the EPA both agree the products were safe when used as directed and no one was ever harmed — yet Miracle Gro and its pesticide manufacturers are the only ones supplying data to the EPA to support the registration in the first place.

So can they truly say with certainty that no one was harmed? Ever?

Of course not.

— Paul Tukey

 

 

Article source: http://www.safelawns.org/blog/2012/10/miracle-gro-employee-gets-90-day-sentence-in-pesticide-scandal/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=miracle-gro-employee-gets-90-day-sentence-in-pesticide-scandal

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New Report: Pesticides Putting Children’s Future in Jeopardy

EDITOR’S NOTE: This is a press release about a new report issued yesterday by the Pesticide Action Network North America. Click KidsHealthReportOct2012 for the full report.

Emerging Science Points to Pesticides as a Key Contributor to Childhood Diseases and Disorders, Requiring Swift Action from Policymakers

OAKLAND, Calif – Learning disabilities, childhood cancer and asthma are on the rise in the United States. And a new report out today points to pesticides – with over 1 billion pounds applied on farms and homes annually – as a critical contributor to these health harms in children.

“Protecting our children from harm is the fundamental duty of parenthood, but how can we do this when developmental toxicants are allowed to freely circulate in our economy?” says Sandra Steingraber, ecologist and acclaimed author. “PAN’s report shines a light on a completely preventable tragedy – that an entire generation of children will not reach its full potential. As such, it describes a violation of human rights and a crisis of family life both. For the healthy development of children to become a national priority, we parents must walk ourselves into the political arena and, waving this good report, speak truth to power.”

In particular, the report points to the fact that children are sicker today than a generation ago, confronting serious health challenges from pesticides and other chemical exposures that their parents and grandparents were unlikely to face.

Health professionals, mothers and rural leaders across the country released the new report, which draws from academic and government research, to chronicle the emerging threat of pesticides to children’s health. Compiled by researchers and scientists at Pesticide Action Network, A Generation in Jeopardy: How pesticides are undermining our children’s health and intelligence focuseson studies published within the past five years – a growing body of evidence that convincingly demonstrates a link between pesticide exposure and childhood health harms.

“Pesticides can have unique and profound impacts on the developing child, even in very small amounts. The research shows that prenatal exposure to pesticides, in combination with other environmental and genetic factors,can contribute to increased risk of adverse health consequences, such as effects on the developing brain” said Dr. Tracey Woodruff, Director, Program on Reproductive Health and the Environment, University of California San Francisco, “We must take swift action to reduce exposure to harmful environmental chemicals to ensure healthier generations”

The report shines a light on the growing links between exposure to pesticides where children, live, learn and play and an array of impacts on the mind and body – including diminished IQ, ADHD autism, childhood cancers and asthma. In particular, the report points to the following trends across studies:

· The brains and nervous systems of boys are significantly more affected than girls.

· Timing of exposure is critically important. If a child is exposed to even very small amounts of a harmful pesticide during a particular moment of development, the impacts can be severe – and often irreversible.

· Studies link exposure to pesticides during pregnancy to increased risk of childhood leukemia and brain cancer. And children who live in intensively agricultural areas are more likely to have childhood cancer.

The report outlines a series of urgent recommendations for state and federal policymakers to better protect children’s health and intelligence, recommendations emphasized by organizations on Tuesday.

“Enough scientific evidence is in – we can’t fail our children. While individual household choices can help, protecting kids from the health harms of pesticides requires real and swift policy change,” said Emily Marquez, PhD, report co-author and staff scientist at Pesticide Action Network. “Dramatically reducing pesticide use, starting with those most hazardous to children, is the best way to protect current and future generations.”

The report points to the need for the following reforms to reduce pesticide use:

· Create stronger policy tools so enforcement agencies can take swift action to pull existing pesticides off the market and block new pesticides when independent studies suggest they are harmful to children.

· Increase investment and support for innovative farmers as they transition away from pesticide use.

· Set and track national pesticide use reduction goals, focusing first on those pesticides that studies show are harmful to children.

· Withdraw harmful pesticide products from use in homes, daycare centers and schools.

· Establish pesticide-free zones around schools, daycare centers and neighborhoods in agricultural areas to protect children from harmful exposures, especially pesticide drift.

The report highlights states and communities across the country where innovative policies have been put in place to protect children from
pesticides where they live, learn and play. From pesticide-free playing fields in Connecticut to protective buffer zones for schools and neighborhoods in California’s central valley and organic school lunch programs in Minnesota, policies designed to keep children out of harm’s way are gaining momentum.

The report was released today in ten cities across the country, including Bakersfield, Des Moines, Fresno, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, Sacramento, Salinas, San Francisco, Stockton, and Ventura.
# # #

Pesticide Action Network North America (PAN North America, or PANNA) works to replace the use of hazardous pesticides with ecologically sound and socially just alternatives. As one of five PAN Regional Centers worldwide, the organization is committed to science grounded in communities.

Available for interviews:

Emily Marquez, PhD, report co-author and staff scientist at Pesticide Action Network

Kristin Schafer, MA, mother, report co-author and senior policy strategist at Pesticide Action Network

Tracey Woodruff, PhD, MPH, director of the Program on Reproductive Health and the Environment and expert on health policies that reduce the impacts of environmental contaminants on reproductive and developmental health

Denise O’Brien, fourth generation Iowa farmer


Paul Towers
Organizing Media Director
Pesticide Action Network North America
“Advancing alternatives to pesticides worldwide”

1611 Telegraph Ave | Suite 1200 | Oakland, CA 94612 (Please note our new address)
Phone :: 415.625.9072 | Cell :: 916.216.1082
www.panna.org | www.whatsonmyfood.org | www.panna.org/blog

Article source: http://www.safelawns.org/blog/2012/10/new-report-pesticides-putting-childrens-future-in-jeopardy/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=new-report-pesticides-putting-childrens-future-in-jeopardy

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Morning Eye Candy: Valdés

As of today, September 22, each and every sculpture has found its home in the Garden. Manolo Valdés: Monumental Sculpture will run through May 26, 2013, affording our visitors the opportunity to view the artist’s work as it was meant to be seen: through the lens of every seasonal landscape.

Photo by Ivo M. Vermeulen

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Article source: http://www.nybg.org/plant-talk/2012/09/photography/morning-eye-candy-13/

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Morning Eye Candy: Valdés

As of today, September 22, each and every sculpture has found its home in the Garden. Manolo Valdés: Monumental Sculpture will run through May 26, 2013, affording our visitors the opportunity to view the artist’s work as it was meant to be seen: through the lens of every seasonal landscape.

Photo by Ivo M. Vermeulen

This entry was posted
on Saturday, September 22nd, 2012 at 6:00 am and is filed under Around the Garden, Photography.
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Article source: http://www.nybg.org/plant-talk/2012/09/photography/morning-eye-candy-13/

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Morning Eye Candy: Valdés

As of today, September 22, each and every sculpture has found its home in the Garden. Manolo Valdés: Monumental Sculpture will run through May 26, 2013, affording our visitors the opportunity to view the artist’s work as it was meant to be seen: through the lens of every seasonal landscape.

Photo by Ivo M. Vermeulen

This entry was posted
on Saturday, September 22nd, 2012 at 6:00 am and is filed under Around the Garden, Photography.
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Article source: http://www.nybg.org/plant-talk/2012/09/photography/morning-eye-candy-13/

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Morning Eye Candy: Valdés

As of today, September 22, each and every sculpture has found its home in the Garden. Manolo Valdés: Monumental Sculpture will run through May 26, 2013, affording our visitors the opportunity to view the artist’s work as it was meant to be seen: through the lens of every seasonal landscape.

Photo by Ivo M. Vermeulen

This entry was posted
on Saturday, September 22nd, 2012 at 6:00 am and is filed under Around the Garden, Photography.
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Article source: http://www.nybg.org/plant-talk/2012/09/photography/morning-eye-candy-13/

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Morning Eye Candy: Valdés

As of today, September 22, each and every sculpture has found its home in the Garden. Manolo Valdés: Monumental Sculpture will run through May 26, 2013, affording our visitors the opportunity to view the artist’s work as it was meant to be seen: through the lens of every seasonal landscape.

Photo by Ivo M. Vermeulen

This entry was posted
on Saturday, September 22nd, 2012 at 6:00 am and is filed under Around the Garden, Photography.
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Article source: http://www.nybg.org/plant-talk/2012/09/photography/morning-eye-candy-13/

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Without Weed ‘n Feed and Roundup on Playgrounds, the Children of Yesteryear Still Played

This photo, from 101 years ago, shows families gathered on the organic lawn of the White House for an Easter Egg hunt.

Raise your hand if, like me, you’re over the age of 50. If your hand is in the air, that means you recall a different time and place with a whole lot less stuff. You probably remember not having a cellphone, a Wii or an XBox, and you probably spent a whole bunch more time outside than your children do today. The statistics, in fact, tell us today’s youth spend 75 percent less time outdoors than we did.

But that’s another rant altogether from the point of the day.

When we were outside as children we played everything . . . from soccer, to baseball, football, kickball, dodgeball, field hockey, Frisbee and you name it. We played, for the most part, on lawns that were green and mown. They were, at least as far as I recall, mostly grass.

And we had fun. We won and we lost, occasionally collected blue ribbons and trophies, and occasionally went home disappointed. But if you take away all today’s electronic gadgets and other distractions, we played outside pretty much the same way that our kids play outside — when they actually get out there. We played hard; we tried to win. We laughed, sometimes cried, and bonded with our friends.

One thing was different, though:

Our playing fields were not coated with weed ‘n feed. They weren’t sprayed with Roundup. They probably weren’t even fertilized. And yet we played. Our families gathered for picnics. We made memories.

Inspired by a trip I’m taking to Colorado on Monday in support of a pesticide reduction bill for the city of Durango, I started digging out some historic photos this morning. There’s one, top, from the White House lawn in 1911. This next one, above, is from New York City at the turn of the last century. The one, below, is from a Colorado playground in the 1950s, about 20 years before widespread use of weed ‘n feed came into vogue in cities and towns across North America. Other than some ridiculously cumbersome outfits, it appears that the folks of yesteryear were having fun.

From what I’ve been told, some folks in Durango have their heels dug deeply on this issue of a new law to reduce pesticides. They’re afraid if the weed ‘n feed and Roundup are taken away, except as a last resort, then costs will go up, property values will go down and weeds will overrun the place.

Yet none of those fears, frankly, make a bit of sense when you look at both history and modern times. No one in Colorado is asking to take away lawn mowers and weed whackers. No one is asking to reduce the number of new products that DON’T have a Caution, Warning or Danger label. No one is asking that the children stop playing on the parks and playgrounds.

In Canada, where the Precautionary Principle has been adopted and 80 percent of the population now lives in municipalities where weed ‘n feed and Roundup are banned outright, kids still play outside. In Marblehead, Mass., where weed ‘n feed and Roundup were banned 15 years ago, the playgrounds are still beautiful. The examples of well-kept and unsprayed parks and playgrounds are endless in the U.S. as this movement continues to gain momentum.

Typical questions have been coming from the media in advance of my trip. One reporter observed: “No one is getting sick in town from the pesticides, so people see this as a non issue and they see this attempt at a pesticide bill as overreaching.”

And that is, sadly, the prevailing American attitude. Out of sight, out of mind. When confronted with weed killers, insect killers and fungicides, children don’t generally fall over dead like the enemies they play in their video games.

The synthetic chemical products that the Durango bill proposes to reduce lurk in the shadows, over and under the blades of grass, on the soles of shoes that track through the house, and on the uniforms, skin and in the hair of unsuspecting soccer and football players. Our children today have more autism, more ADHD, more asthma, more cancer and more health issues across the board — and the facts prove that pesticides contribute to this — yet the citizens who are afraid of weeds on the playgrounds refuse to admit any children are getting sick.

And so I’ll be on that plane Monday to remind people that 50 years ago, when childhood cancer was virtually non-existent compared to today, the kids played outside on the lawn and had a hell of a good time.

Article source: http://www.safelawns.org/blog/index.php/2012/08/without-weed-n-feed-and-roundup-on-playgrounds-the-children-of-yesteryear-still-played/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=without-weed-n-feed-and-roundup-on-playgrounds-the-children-of-yesteryear-still-played

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Kerlly Bernabé: Building the Bridge

When Kerlly Bernabé first arrived in the late ’90s, The New York Botanical Garden served as more of a “look but don’t touch” establishment. The Everett Children’s Adventure Garden, far from the hub of children’s activities it is today, was little more than a blueprint doodle. But it was on that same day, with the appearance of our first Explainers, that all of this began to shift for the better.

Kerlly’s four years as one of the original Garden Explainers resulted in the founding of one of the most significant volunteer programs of any cultural institution in New York City. Today, these high school students–aged 14 to 17–work daily to make learning more than a chore, engaging kids and families throughout the Garden in hands-on activities and open exploration. In helping to build this thriving program, each Explainer leaves with not only a newfound knowledge of nature, but a sound jumping-off point for opportunities in their education and careers. Perhaps more importantly, they leave with a sense of confidence and responsibility.

It’s been years since Kerlly first donned the green shirt, but even as a busy graduate student, she’s still generous enough with her time to show today’s Explainers how it’s done. Her brief return sees her facilitating one of our newest summer courses, MasterCard’s Priceless Budding Masters. But before she once more set off into the business of education, I had an opportunity to sit down with Kerlly and discuss the early days of the Explainers–the drive behind the program’s creation, and the obstacles to kicking off such an unprecedented project within our century-old institution.

To say that the Explainers had humble beginnings is something of an understatement.


How did you come to volunteer at the Garden, and what drew you to the program?

It was around 1996; I was in junior high. I first connected with the NYBG through the Math/Science Institute, which back in the mid-’90s was a new program being piloted to help inner-city kids test into specialized high schools, because African-American and Latino kids–even public school students in general–weren’t being well-represented in these science-focused institutions.

The program was launched by Mr. Bruce Ravage, who had this vision for reducing the education gap he saw here in the Bronx. I think that was around the sixth or seventh grade. Mr. Ravage believed so much in our potential, and he felt that if there were more bridges created for kids like us, it would keep us motivated and on the path to do more in science and math. So he spoke with people here at the Garden in around 1997. At that time the Everett Children’s Adventure Garden didn’t even exist, and there wasn’t as much going on to engage people’s curiosity as to the beauty of the Garden.

Bruce struck up a couple of conversations with the Garden’s education department and said, “Hey, you know, I have a group of highly-motivated high school students here from the Bronx; is there any chance you have a program they could help you with?” He built the first bridge. Along with Master and Senior Explainers in higher grades, many of which came from the Bronx High School of Sciences, this is how the Explainer internship program came about.

What were the challenges like for the first group of Explainers?

It was myself and four or five other students from the Math/Science program, a tight-knit group, and we were set up with these little science carts. One of them focused on plants, flowers, and the like. Another dealt with the wooded areas of the Garden, featuring different trees. They all had different themes. So in a way we just sort of jumped in head first, a bunch of science students that knew the basic terms but saw the program as an opportunity to expand our curiosity about nature and this amazing resource in the Bronx. The Garden was something we hadn’t found a chance to appreciate before then.

It took a lot of tenacity to head out with those five little carts and convince people to talk to us. But after a while, it became clear that most visitors were happy to see us, to stumble across us with an honest desire to learn. The greater challenge lay in the fact that many of the Garden’s visitors were botanical researchers themselves, and they clearly knew far more than we did. It was intimidating for high school students. “So how much do you really know?” But, in the end, they were very gracious. The experts shared so much of their knowledge–intricate subjects, tree species, plant physiology–so many things we weren’t aware of when we first arrived. It kept us on our toes, while working with the public taught us to be sensitive to perceptions and different learning processes. It was such a social experience.

How did the Explainer program influence your growth as a person, or your education and career goals?

As my first real job, it was one of the best things to happen to me in terms of showing me what responsibility meant, especially at such a young age. I was never a rebellious teenager, but being an Explainer showed me how to discipline myself, and to build on my love of science and the ongoing learning process that comes with it.

After leaving the Explainers, I went on to become a biology major in college while also studying pre-med. I’m now completing a graduate program with Boston University’s School of Public Health. For a junior high student to be talking about any subject with authority–it’s something to be proud of. I learned so much about how to build my communication skills with people of any age or level of knowledge. And the Explainer program helped me to overcome a lot of the common insecurities that kids at that age generally deal with. That confidence has gone a long way.

What’s the most important thing you took away from your time as a Garden Explainer?

We worked with talented docents and retired teachers, each with a wealth of knowledge far beyond what we entered the program with. But there was an informal sort of peer and mentor relationship between all of us. For them, I think it was wonderful to have protégés of a sort, impressionable young minds that were simply curious about science. For us, they served as role models–through their careers, or their personalities–and we had their expertise to draw from when interacting with the public down the line. We held onto a lot of what they taught us.

When you’re a teenager, you think you know everything. The Explainer experience definitely kept us humble. It made us aware that we didn’t have all the answers. It showed us how you could not only be a follower, but hopefully a leader later on.

Do you have a particular memory of being an Explainer that sticks out above all others?

Karl Brummert–he was here at the Garden when we started the program. He was actually one of the first people Bruce Ravage spoke to, along with Aija Sears, to get the Explainer program moving. Karl had this great love of sharing what he had learned, and with us, it was often ornithological. It was something of a running joke that he would pick the strangest times to get excited about birds.

Often it would be the middle of winter, and we’d be trekking through the snow. You have to imagine this group of inner city kids who’ve never even been camping, and it’s like, “Why are we even out here in the middle of winter when we could be inside, drinking hot chocolate?” All of a sudden Karl starts talking about the birds in the area while we’re shivering behind him. He’d hear the birds’ calls and start talking excitedly about the local avian population. We were miserable. But, for a moment, we’d just look at each other as if to say, “No, this is stuff we’re going to need to know later on.” We weren’t even being graded, but we knew that this was part of our learning experience, and that we should make the best of it.

Karl had a very animated, accessible teaching method that spoke to his abilities and passions. It was walking away with this experience that really sticks in my mind. Of having these individuals caring enough to invest in us as teenagers.

Finally, do you have any words of wisdom for current or future Explainers?

Enjoy the time that you have in the program. It’s an opportunity to meet like-minded peers and build lasting relationships with them. For me, the friends I made through the Explainer program have been a support system even years later. For you, that might mean friends to fall back on when you’re struggling through university or having a rough time. But it’s wonderful to be around people of a like mind, with similar goals and motivations in the sciences.

It’s the same with the people who are running the Explainer program. Get to know them. They’re here because they really want to be here, and they want to see each intern flourish in his or her own way, whether the aspiration is academic, artistic, or whatever else interests you. They have so much to impart, even if you don’t notice at first; later on, you might be surprised by how far their advice carries you. So if you really want to be here, try to make the most of your time.

This entry was posted
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Article source: http://www.nybg.org/plant-talk/2012/08/people/kerlly-bernabe-building-the-bridge/

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A Legacy Revealed: Glenstone Showcases its Organic Lawn for the Masses

The organic lawn makeover at Glenstone, a modern art museum in Potomac, Md., is showcased by Joe Lamp’l’s Growing a Greener World on PBS.

Barely two years from the initial phone call for our consultative services, one of our primary clients — Glenstone — takes a bow today with the airing of an organic lawn care special on Growing A Greener Planet:
http://www.growingagreenerworld.com/episode305/.

Clearly answering the questions about whether or not organic lawn care can work, and if it’s more expensive (it’s not), the segment features a rare interview with the museum’s founders Mitch and Emily Rales.

“I got pregnant with my first child, our first child,” said Emily. “I started reading a lot about the environment. I actually got a book as a gift by Sandra Steingraber. It’s called Having Faith. She started talking about environmental toxins and how they’re really all around us. You can’t go through life without ingesting it, without internalizing the stuff that’s around you. It really got me started thinking about the world around us and also all of this lawn.”

Three months from her daughter’s birth, Emily said she held a meeting with the Glenstone grounds crew that had been maintaining the 160-acre estate with synthetic chemical fertilizers and pesticides. She also asked to review all the labels and material safety data sheets for the products.

“I dutifully went and looked up every single chemical in the database and I was horrified,” she said. At that moment she decided to make a change.

“We did our homework, we contacted some people and we were lucky enough to be in touch with Paul Tukey and here we are today.”

Article source: http://www.safelawns.org/blog/index.php/2012/07/a-legacy-revealed-glenstone-showcases-its-organic-lawn-for-the-masses/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=a-legacy-revealed-glenstone-showcases-its-organic-lawn-for-the-masses

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