Expert looks at managing garden pests

The Comox Valley Horticultural Society welcomes guest speaker Dr. Linda A. Gilkeson Monday.

The Comox Valley Horticultural Society welcomes guest speaker Dr. Linda A. Gilkeson on Oct. 21, presenting Don’t Panic! You Can Manage Garden Pests and Diseases Organically.

Dr. Gilkeson will provide the latest information on how to identify, prevent and manage pests and diseases in food and flower gardens. It will include recently introduced problems such as apple maggot, spotted wing Drosophila, daylily gall midge and garlic rust that have become widespread in the region.

Linda earned a Ph.D. in Entomology from McGill University in 1986, then moved to British Columbia to work for Applied Bio-Nomics Ltd, a company that produces biological controls.

From 1991 to 2002 she worked for the provincial government, promoting programs to reduce and eliminate pesticide use. She was head of the provincial State of Environment Reporting Unit for the next six years, then the executive director of the Salt Spring Island Conservancy until the end of 2011. Linda now devotes her time to writing, teaching and consulting.

Linda has co-authored pest management training manuals for the government and organic gardening books for Rodale Press. She has self-published two books. Her recent book, Backyard Bounty: The Complete Guide to Year-round Organic Gardening in the Pacific Northwest has become a B.C. best seller.

Linda was awarded a Queen’s Jubilee medal in 2003 and an outstanding achievement award from the Professional Pest Management Association of BC in 2005.

The Oct. 21 meeting will begin early to accommodate the annual general meeting prior to our guest speaker. The evening will begin with the Meet ‘n’ Greet at 6:30 p.m. at the Florence Filberg Centre in Courtenay. The business meeting will begin at 7 p.m. Non-members are welcome to attend for a charge of $5. For further info, contact Leslie Cox at 250-337-8051 or duchessofdirt@telus.net.  Please also visit www.comoxvalleyhortsociety.ca.

— Comox Valley Horticultural Society