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May talk: Beneficial Insect Solutions for Your Garden by Alison Kutz

THURSDAY, May 10, 2018

Meeting at the Bellevue Botanical Garden

There are lots of flowers blooming in my garden and an equal amount of bugs appearing as well. Some of them are welcome but I see lots of aphids and leaf miners hanging around and it feels like lots of them are more active than I would like...

So this month's talk by Alison Kutz on Beneficial Insect Solutions for the Garden comes just at the right time. I'm looking forward to hearing what she has to say!!

Here's a little about Alison:

Alison Kutz has over 30 years of experience as a grower, herb propagator, and owner and operator of wholesale nursery, Cascade Cuts, in Bellingham, WA. Early on, Alison experimented with the concept of growing for production while reducing and eliminating pesticide use. Those early challenges proved to be a fruitful learning ground, and a place to work out the quirks of using beneficial insects, organic potting blends, compost, and compost teas. Sound Horticulture grew out of the demand for Alison to share her knowledge and experience with other producers and agriculturists, particularly in British Columbia, who were inquiring about the new concept of working with compost tea. The idea of adding a biologically charged form of nutrition to container plant growing was an “ah- ha” moment for her nursery work at Cascade Cuts. She became the “go-to” gal for people with questions about how to integrate these actively aerated compost extractions into production horticulture, and thus, in 2000, Sound Horticulture was born. The innovative work with compost tea was synergistic with the mission to reduce synthetic inputs in general, and so Sound Horticulture has continued to evolve, developing a central focus on beneficial insects and biocontrols. Today, Sound Horticulture offers ecologically based solutions for greenhouse producers and specialty agriculture. These include the sales of beneficial insects and nematodes, compost tea brewers from Growing Solutions, microbial products, pest management tools like traps and lures, and consultative and technical sup-port. These hard to find specialty products are designed to work together in various growing systems, and work synergistically with each other. Now supporting a wide array of growers, Alison is constantly wrapping her brain around problem solving for others. Sound Horticulture takes the approach of examining whole system health in all of its components.

Alison’s passion is understanding the dynamics of biological systems, and offering technical support that reflects each unique environment. Her industry affiliations are many, and her experience in various sectors of Agriculture and Horticulture are unique. Alison's pragmatic approaches are carefully tailored to the needs of particular environments, but also take into consideration the many facets of the management and communication within an organization. She is comfortable in a variety of settings and maintains close ties with many land grant universities, researchers and con-sultants on a variety of topics affecting the changing landscape of pest control.

Join us at the Bellevue Botanical Garden at 7:00 pm for social time, 7:30 pm for the meeting and program. Our meetings are free and open to the public.

See you all soon!

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