Speakers for the Go Green Expo 2021 were chosen for their expertise in their fields.  Their decisions to speak at our event shows their dedication to our principles of sustainability and care for our environment.  Make sure you don't miss our insightful and informative speakers for Go Green Expo 2021.

10:00am and 1:00pm -- Rooms 101 and 102 -- (Preregistration and $60 payment required.)"Rain Barrel Workshop"

In this workshop you will learn about water conservation, recycling, the benefits of rain water and how to assemble and install your own rain barrel! (See Rain Barrels for more detailed info.) Ray Robinson, Newport News VCE Master Gardener.

Ray finished college at Tuskegee University with a B.S. degree in biology, minor in chemistry, specializing in microbiology.  He became a Newport News Master Gardener in 2004, and with Newport News Waterworks and the Newport News Recycling, he started our rain barrel program in 2009. Ray became a Water Steward in 2012 and was the president of the Newport News Master Gardeners from 2014 to 2016 and gives presentations to many organizations.

11am - Room 104 - "Lawns"
Attend one of the more popular topics of this event!  Learn the more sustainable ways to care for your lawn using environment friendly methods.  Barb Foley, Newport News Master Gardener.
Barb has been a Newport News Master Gardener for 15 years.  She has taken advanced training to become a Water Steward and a Tree Steward.  For ten years, Barb worked in the turf program at the James City County VCE Office and now brings her lawn experience to Newport News.  Outside of the gardening realm, she enjoys worldwide, is an avid RVer, coaches riders to successfully show their horses, teaches dog obedience classes, and loves making greeting cards.  She is a life-long member of two kennel clubs and shares her home with two retired Papillion show dogs.
11am - Room 103 - "Water Wise Gardening"
Water is one of our most precious resources!  Without it, there would be no life. This presentation will teach us smart ways to use water wisely in our gardens, the main focus of this event.
John Wilson, Farmer, owner of New Earth Farm, Virginia Beach, VA.
For nearly thiry years, John has been active in organic farming and sustainable practices.  After taking classes in building efficient structures, solar energy, organic farming and composting, he moved to Virginia Beach in 1979.  He started New Earth Compost and then New Earth Farm.  His produce and eggs are sold at many Farmers' Markets and stores and through the farm's CSA program. John also sells organic soil amendments and animal feed to organic farms and gardens.  John works with area schools, setting up garden programs and offers visits to his farm.  He is also a long time member of the Virginia Association for Biologica Farming.  He is presently forming a non-profit called New Earth Education focusing on sustainable practices for schools and the community and is remediating land in Pungo for National Organic Certification.

11:30, 12:30, 1:30, 2:30 -- Pavilion ($25 payment required. Pre-registration suggested.) --"Vermiculture Workshop"

Learn about the benefits of raising worms in your own home and walk away with your own complete worm composting bin.  Your kids will LOVE this workshop! (See Vermiculture for more detailed info.) Dale Timmer, Newport News VCE Master Gardener

Dale Timmer is a retired teacher and a lifelong gardener who joined the Newport News Master Gardener program in 2014.  He has expanded his interests to include worm composting, or vermiculture, and enjoys sharing his experiences with youth at local schools.  When not involved in gardening, he spends his time enjoying family and teaching as an Adjunct Professor at Christopher Newport University.


12:00 -- Room 104 --"Managing Stormwater with your Landscape" 

Stormwater is one of the biggest causes of pollution in the Hampton Roads area and the Chesapeake Bay.  Not only should we learn the proper way to use fertilizers and soil amendments, but we should also learn the proper way to control water runoff from our properties.  This presentation will show how we should properly use water in our landscapes.

Dr. Laurie Fox, Ph.D., Horticulture Associate of the Virginia Tech Hampton Roads Agricultural Research & Extension Center (AREC).

 A native of Richmond, VA, Laurie has her Ph.D. in  Horticulture from Wageningen University, The Netherlands, with emphasis on phytoremediation.  She has  BS and MS degrees from NC State University and has been a North Carolina Extension Agent for 3 years.  She is now a Hampton Roads AREC Weed Scientist and Horticulture Associate working in the areas of Water Quality and Sustainable Landscapes.  As an author, Laurie published the book "Best Plants for Hampton Roads: A Landscape and Garden Companion".  She is a contributor to "Native Plants for Southeast Virginia" Including the "Hampton Roads Guide", and the Virginia Flower and Garden Expo.  Presently, Laurie is an educational advisor to the Virginia Nursery and Landscape Association and a Steering Committee member and trainer for the Chesapeake Bay Landscape Professional Certification program.

Rhonda Graves

1:30 - Room 103 - "Biochar Talk and Workshop" ($8)

Biochar is the result of turning a biomass into pure carbon.  When returned to the soil, it helps the soil retain its nutritive value for plants.  It also helps to reduce greenhouse gases.  This workshop will show you how you can turn biomass into biochar.  Go to Biochar Workshop for more information.

Rhonda L. Graves, Hampton Master Gardener.

A native of Hampton, Rhonda graduated from Mary Washington College with a B.A. in history.  She worked as a colonial apprentice bookbinder in Colonial Williamsburg and in book restoration in Atlanta.  Rhonda also tried her hand at stained glass and pottery.  Returning to Hampton, she became a Master Gardener in 2009, a Peninsula Tree Steward in 2011, and a Master Naturalist in 2014.  She says she still has lots to learn.