July 25th, 2016


I want to pass along some very exciting news. Our unified garden voice, our National Initiative for Consumer Horticulture (NICH) is alive and growing! Please read on to get some updates and see how you can get involved. Your fellow gardeners and horticulturists need you!

After our initial strategic planning meeting in Washington, DC last November, we entered a second phase of refining our Mission, Vision, and Goals – along with the creation of strong objectives to support them. Our steering committee spent a great deal of time and effort, and we cannot thank them enough. We also asked many of you for initial thoughts and suggestions, and enjoyed/incorporated your feedback. Our new mission became crystallized – growing a healthy world through plants, gardens, and landscapes.

Then, in core group meeting in Denver at the beginning of this month (July 2016) we birthed a new organizational structure, and formed the committees that will enact our plan. These committees represent not only the key goal areas, but the breadth of our green industry discipline – from researchers through Master Gardeners, extension through industry, and all our allied NGO’s. Our intention is that from Abies to Zamia all those who garden and wish to support our industry can find their niche within our NICH.

Join us! Please go to our website (consumerhort.org) to view our updated plan, and see where your niche is. Now is your chance to get involved. Our committees are forming, establishing leadership roles, and shaping their work plans. The time involved will be minimal (1-2 hours per month) or more if you wish, as collectively we push forward to unite the gardening world.

What could this mean for us?

  • Better funding paths for critical research related to both plants themselves, and collective results of economy
  • Less redundancy in efforts to reach stakeholders
  • More healthy, knowledgeable, and engaged customers
  • A respected and safe workforce whose tradecraft is highly honored

Please contact us to engage your unique perspectives. Thank you for your support!


The National Initiative for Consumer Horticulture Inaugural Leadership Team

D. Casey Sclar, Executive Director, American Public Gardens Association


Ellen Bauske, Program Coordinator, Georgia Center for Urban Agriculture

Tom Underwood, Executive Director, American Horticultural Society


Gail Langellotto, Associate Professor/Statewide Master Gardener Coordinator, Oregon State University


Susan McCoy, Queen Bee, Garden Media Group