Wish I had thought to look up the zone for gardening here in La Pine, Oregon...before we moved here. It's the same as Alaska's, short and unpredictable. To have a proper vegetable garden here one has to have a large, heated greenhouse. This will be my first, personal, greenhouse and I've got lots to learn. Nothing better than walking into a greenhouse and working with dirt, plants...water. A greenhouse is such a huge responsibility. Vacations away from home will be few. Grin, I am very excited.
I am a Landscape Architect, licensed in Idaho. I spent extra time in college teaching Plant ID and Design, graphics and Grading and Drainage. I've also taken the Master Gardener courses in Washington three times. Worked as a foreman and supervisor in Landscape Maintenance for a decade before I finally became a project manager and could use my license as a Landscape Architect. Mostly residential, I've got hundreds of projects that I've been able to follow into maturity. I've learned so much yet I keep finding so much more that I don't.
Working in landscape maintenance I had to have a Pesticide Applicator's License. They teach you 'how not to use pesticides'...they never talk about brands or use pesticides except when one is forced to turn to pesticides (it's like a BandAid for mistakes one makes in the garden). We were taught how to READ THE LABEL, 5X, every time before using any pesticide. Before resorting to pesticides, they taught prevention. Knowing this I'd make sure if I were to hire someone to maintain my landscape that they had a Pesticide Applicator's License. Of course I'd never pay anyone money to do what I love...taking care of my own yard.
The WSU Cooperative Extension Service provides the courses, instructors and tests. Taking these courses, the continuing education seminars and the Master Gardener programs were some of the best information I've ever had and one of the best ways to stay current. Love the people I've met. Something about humans who love plants!