Chesterfield County Extension Staff
Chesterfield County Extension Staff

The Chesterfield County office of Virginia Cooperative Extension is your local connection to Virginia's land-grant universities, Virginia Tech and Virginia State University.

Through educational programs based on research and developed with input from local stakeholders, we help the people of Chesterfield County improve their lives.

We provide education through programs in Agriculture and Natural Resources, Family and Consumer Sciences, 4-H Youth Development, and Community Viability.

6807 Mimms Loop
P.O. Box 146
Chesterfield, VA 23832

Hours: 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Monday - Friday

Main Office: (804) 751-4401
Fax: (804) 751-0515
Contact Us

Chesterfield County
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Hot Topics

Language Interpretation Services Now Available

If you have limited English skills, do not let that stop you from visiting an Extension office. If you have difficulty speaking or understanding English, our staff can serve you by connecting you to one of our Extension agents through a telephone-based interpreter. Interpretation for more than 200 languages is provided. This service is free to our clients. Read more

4-H Summer Camp Save The Date

4-H Camp


Chesterfield 4-H Camp will be held June 20-24, 2016.  Registration for this camp will be ONE DAY ONLY, on Friday March 4th at the Extension office, 6-8 p.m.  To register, the full amount ($310) will be due and only check or money orders made out to "Treasurer of Chesterfield County".  NO CASH PAYMENTS.  Youth campers will be registered strictly on a first come/first serve basis.  Any spots that may remain open after March 4th will also be filled on a first come/first serve basis. We are limited to 180 camper spots and we do fill very quickly!

If your family is in need of assistance, we do have a limited number of scholarships available.  For questions about this, or anything else to do with 4-H summer camp please contact Bethany at

FCS Programs for Spring 2016

Be Heart Healthy/Ten Steps to a Healthier You     2/11/2016

February is the month we are reminded of the importance of showing love. Valentine’s Day on Feb. 14 provides an opportunity to express appreciation to those we love. February also is National Heart Month. Even more important than giving valentines, February is a great time for people to begin showing their love and caring for others by taking care of their hearts. The Ten Steps to a Healthier You workshop will provide you with knowledge and skills to help you and your family achieve a healthy lifestyle by making healthy food choices, increasing physical activity, and improving your heart’s health. For more information, please click here.

Celebrate America Saves Week by Making Your Money Go Further    2/23/2016

Join Central Virginia Saves during “American Saves Week”, February 21 – 27, 2016, by visiting This is an annual opportunity for individuals to assess their savings and take financial action. The focus for America Saves Week is simple: Set a Goal. Make a Plan. Save Automatically. Knowing your current financial picture can help you be more proactive in setting up for future success. For more information, please click here.

For a complete listing of Family and Consumer Sciences Educational Workshops for 2016, please click here. Call Linda Cole at 804-751-4401 or email her at:  with questions or for more information regarding these workshops.

Landscape for Life

Landscape for Life 

Are you a homeowner who wants to create and maintain your own healthy, sustainable landscape? Through instructor-led presentations, class discussions, and activities, you will deepen your understanding of how to get the most out of water in your garden, how to build healthy soils with minimal outside inputs, how to use native and climate adapted plants for this area and how to find the most environmentally-friendly landscape materials. Students will analyze their own home landscapes focusing on soils, water, plants and use of materials.

Classes will meet on Tuesday evenings beginning on April 5, 2016 through May 10, 2016 from 6:30-8:30 pm at the Cooperative Extension Office located at 6807 Mimms Loop, Chesterfield, 23832. call 804-751-4401 or email for more information or click Here to download a registration form.  

For more information about this program please click Here.

Are You Interested in Becoming a Master Gardener?

Am I Master Gardener Material?

Are you looking for a way to improve your community through volunteer service? Do you enjoy teaching and talking to the public? Do you have an interest in horticulture? If the answer to all of these questions is yes, Master Gardener volunteer opportunities may be right for you. For more information, please click HERE

For a Master Gardener application click HERE. 

Free Spring Public Seminars

Spring 2016 Lawn and Garden Seminar Series

Save the date for the following FREE public seminars to the public this coming spring. These seminars take place at Chesterfield Libraries, unless noted. Registration for most can be done by calling the Extension Office at 804-751-4401 or by emailed at: unless noted. 

Weeds 101

What:              Trying to control weeds in the lawn and garden are ever present gardening chores but they don’t have to dominate your time. A Cooperative Extension Master Gardener will discuss techniques to help you work smarter- not harder - in the lawn and garden.

When:             2/9/2016 from 6:00 – 8:00 pm

Where:            Chester Library, 11800 Centre St., Chester. VA 

Contact:         Space is limited, Register online at You can also call the Extension Office at 751-4401 or email to register for this seminar.   


Going Native

What:              A “Native” is not the same as a wildflower or a weed; they are not necessarily “natural” or “weedy” looking either. Using native plants is an effective way homeowners can affect change for the better by providing beauty within a framework of responsible and sustainable gardening practices.

When:             2/16/2016 from 6:00 – 7:30 pm

Where:            Chester Library, 11800 Centre St., Chester, VA

Contact:         Space is limited, Register online at You can also call the Extension Office at 751-4401 or email to register for this seminar.   

Growing Mushrooms at Home

What:              There is no need to be in the “dark” about growing mushrooms. Growing mushrooms is unlike other gardening, but you can grow mushrooms at home. These tasty chameleons of the food world are fat-free, low in calories, and filled with vitamins, antioxidants and other nutrients. Plus, it is fun!

When:             3/1/2016 from 6:00 – 8:00 pm

Where:            Central Library, 9501 Lori Road, Chesterfield, VA 

Contact:         Space is limited, Register online at You can also call the Extension Office at 751-4401 or email to register for this seminar.   


Pruning for the Terrified

What:              The when, where and why of pruning! The “3 W’s” of pruning are typically reduced to electric shears and a guessing game! This class will discuss the various methods of pruning small trees and shrubs, the time of year certain plants should be pruned and how proper pruning can produce a healthier, more attractive and longer-lived plant.

When:             3/5/2016 from 10:30 am – 12:00 pm

Where:            Ettrick-Matoaca Library, 4501 River Road, Petersburg, VA

Contact:         Space is limited, Please call the Ettrick/Matoaca Library to register for this seminar at 804-318-8688.


Attracting Specific Birds to Your Yard

What:              Our area has many species of birds that either live or visit here. Your garden can be a smorgasbord of bird-tempting trees, shrubs, vines, native plants, and flowers. For most birds, plants are an essential element in determining where they spend their time. The selection of plants and their arrangement in the landscape are important in making a bird feel at home.

When:             3/9/2016 from 6:30 – 8:00 pm

Where:            Enon Library, 1801 Enon Church Road, Chester, VA

Contact:         Space is limited, Please call the Enon Library to register for this seminar at 804-318-8911


Spring Lawn Care

What:              Many of us want to get a jump start on lawn care this Spring.  Be sure to assess your lawn before getting ahead of yourself. Turf plants are very sensitive in early spring, and it is important to know when to do what for the healthiest lawn. Many may discover that the optimal time for several lawn care tasks is not actually spring, but rather late summer.

When:             3/10/2016 from 6:00 – 8:00 pm

Where:            Central Library, 9501 Lori Road, Chesterfield, VA

Contact:         Space is limited, Register online at You can also call the Extension Office at 751-4401 or email to register for this seminar.   


Selecting and Planting Trees and Shrubs

What:              So, you’re thinking about buying a tree and/or a shrub. Do you know which trees and shrubs do best in your area? Have you thought about how to properly plant your tree or shrub to ensure it survives and grows well? Do you know how to ensure good health and longevity for the tree or shrub you plant? This class gives basic information on choosing your planting site, selecting the right species for the site, proper planting techniques, and first-year care.

When:             3/16/2016 from 6:00 – 8:00 pm

Where:            Midlothian Library, 521 Coalfield Road, Midlothian, VA

Contact:         Space is limited, Register online at can also call the Extension Office at 751-4401 or email to register for this seminar.   


Safety in the Garden- How not to Hurt Yourself

What:              Now that spring is finally here, we are occupied with working in our gardens (in addition to complaining about the heat and humidity.) There are some things that will help keep you safe while you work in your yard. Learn how to not hurt yourself from one of Chesterfield County’s Master Gardeners.

When:             3/21/2016 from 6:30 – 7:30 pm 

Where:            Enon Library, 1801 Enon Church Road, Chester, VA 

Contact:            Space is limited, please call the Enon Library to register for this program at 804-318-8911


When:              4/13/2016 from 6:30 – 7:30 pm

Where:             Central Library 9501 Lori Road, Chesterfield, VA    

Contact:           Space is limited, Register online at You can also call the Extension Office at 751-4401 or email to register for this seminar. 

Container Gardening

What:  Containers offer a wonderful gardening opportunity as they can add color and interest in a wide range of garden settings beyond our traditionally planted areas. Container gardening can be successfully approached with proper container selection, soil preparation, plant selection and care. Many planting suggestions will also be reviewed by two of Chesterfield County’s Master Gardeners.

When:  4/5/2016 from 6:00 – 8:00 pm

Where:  Midlothian Library 521 Coalfield Road, Midlothian, VA

Contact:  Space is limited, Register online at You can also call the Extension Office at 751-4401 or email to register for this seminar. 


Be A Hero – Save the Bees; Save the Food

What:              Cultivate awareness and encourage action towards protecting the bees and our food supply by providing habitat for pollinators in your own backyard. You can create a beautiful space and valuable habitat for pollinators.

When:             4/6/2016 from 6:30 – 8:00 pm

Where:            Enon Library, 1801 Enon Church Road, Chester, VA

Contact:         Space is limited, contact the Enon Library to register for this seminar at: 804-318-8911


Warm Season Lawn Care

What:              A Warm Season Grass in a Cool Season World - The primary warm season species, bermudagrass and zoysiagrass, are well adapted throughout this region of Virginia. Midspring through mid-summer is the optimum time to plant warm-season grasses here in the Richmond area. Come and learn how from a Chesterfield County Master Gardener, who actually has a warm season lawn, what to do for this type of lawn.

When:             4/6/2016 from 6:00 – 8:00 pm

Where:            Central Library, 9501 Lori Road, Chesterfield, VA

Contact:         Space is limited, Register online at You can also call the Extension Office at 751-4401 or email to register for this seminar.   


Slaying the Dragons of Garden Myths

What:    Results or Entertainment?

Some people have used chocolate flavored Ex-lax to keep chipmunks and moles from destroying their gardens.





• And the cost of this is what? 

Some gardening habits and myths really should be dispelled because, as the latest science shows, many of these old myths aren't true.

When:              4/9/2016 from 12:30 – 2:30 pm

Where:            Clover Hill Library, 6701 Deer Run Road, Midlothian, VA   

Contact:         Space is limited, Register online at You can also call the Extension Office at 751-4401 or email to register for this seminar.   


What:              Whether you are an experienced beekeeper, a new beekeeper, or thinking about starting a backyard beehive, expert instructors will walk you through all of the basic knowledge to start hives in your backyard. This Beekeeping seminar is suitable for both beginners and those with some beekeeping experience.

When:             4/12/2016 from 6:30 – 8:30 pm

Where:            North Courthouse Library, 325 Courthouse Road, North Chesterfield, VA

Contact:         *Space is limited; please call the North Courthouse Library at 804-318-8499          to register for this seminar.


What:              The secret to successful composting is to select an approach and technique that suits your needs and lifestyle. Your choice will depend on a number of factors. Come and discover what you need to know about composting.

When:             4/12/2016 from 6:00 – 8:00 pm

Where:            Chester Library, 11800 Centre Street, Chester, VA

Contact:         *Space is limited; please call the Chester Library at 804-318-8977 to register for this seminar.

Small Space Vegetable Gardening

What:              Many folks would love to grow their own fresh vegetables, but perhaps they are short on space and/or time. If you've got space for a pot of flowers on the patio or balcony, then you too can grow vegetables. Learn some tips for creating and stretching a small garden space in this seminar.

When:             4/16/2016 from 12:30 – 2:30 pm

Where:            LaPrade Library, 9000 Hull Street Road, North Chesterfield, VA

Contact:         Space is limited, Register online at You can also call the Extension Office at 751-4401 or email to register for this seminar.   

Grass Roots & Learn Your Landscape Programs 2015

Healthy Virginia Lawns - Grass Roots Personalized Lawn Care Recommendations

The popular Grass Roots program involves a home visit by a trained Master Gardener Volunteer who will measure your lawn, take a soil sample, and provide personalized recommendations based on a detailed site evaluation. The program fee is $25 and covers the cost of supplies, materials and one soil test. Additional soil samples are $11 each. (Maximum of 3; lawn only) The Grass Roots program is available through June.

For a registration form, please click here


Grass Roots

The Learn Your Landscape Program 

This program includes a 1.5-hour onsite evaluation by a trained Master Gardener volunteer to obtain a basic landscape inventory and determine what your needs might be, from growing native plants to having a healthy, sustainable yard and garden. Also included are a follow-up consultation and a personalized reference binder with tips and suggestions. The cost of the program is $30. An option in this program is a in depth wildlife habitat assessment metric in cooperation with the Habitat Partners © Program of the VA Department of Game and Inland Fisheries for those who want to improve their yards to become more habitat healthy in support of desirable wildlife with recommendations of Virginia native plants. 

For a Learn Your Landscape registration form, please click here.

Newsletter and Program Updates

Would you like to receive notification about lawn and garden programs or upcoming public seminars? If you are not receiving our newsletter and other program updates, send us an email requesting that you be placed on the recipient list to receive these notifications. Email your request to:  

Click below to see the newsletters:

Extension Connections Spring 2015

Things are busy in the heat of summer, with school out, summer camps and vacation. We invite you to take a break and cool down with the summer edition of Extension Connections.

This issue contains information on some exciting programming that will help you to get your lawn and garden in order, keep the kids busy and help your family become more organized and healthy. Extension Connections Summer 2015

Wow, summer has come and gone, and the cool mornings are letting us know that autumn is approaching.  As you can see from the content of this newsletter, we’re not cooling down, though. Extension Connections Fall 2015

There are tips and tricks as well as numerous programs to help you learn new or different skills. So on those snowy, cold evenings, when you’re looking at vacation brochures or seed catalogs, mark your 2016 calendar for some of our programs, too. Extension Connections Winter 2015-2016

Agriculture and Natural Resources Info

The Chesterfield County Office of Virginia Cooperative Extension is proud to serve our residents with numerous lawn and garden programs and services. 

Read more....

Virginia Beginning Farmer & Rancher Coalition Program

The Virginia Beginning Farmer & Rancher Coalition Program, or VBFRCP is a state-wide and coalition-based Extension program, housed in Virginia Tech’s Department of Agricultural, Leadership, and Community Education and Virginia Cooperative Extension.

The Virginia Beginning Farmer & Rancher Coalition Program invites you join them for trainings, resources, mentoring, webinars, networking and more. To read the July 2015 edition of the newsletter, please click here.

James River Soil & Water Conservation District Youth Opportunities

Attention local High School students! For currently enrolled Seniors (home schooled students included), the James River SWCD has a scholarship available for students that will be starting college in the fall of 2015 and majoring in conservation, environmental science, or agriculture. 

JRSWCD is also offering 2 scholarships for all high school students interested in attending the 2015 Youth Conservation Camp at Virginia Tech this coming summer. For 39 years, the Virginia Association of Soil and Water Conservation Districts has sponsored a week-long summer conservation camp for Virginia high school students (currently enrolled in grades 9-12) on the campus of Virginia Tech. The program brings together about 70 interested students for a week of learning about Virginia’s natural resources from conservation professionals and Virginia Tech faculty. Most of the instruction is hands-on and outdoors. In talking with some of the students that have attended, it was one of the most rewarding and fun experiences that they can remember.

Farmers! James River SWCD still has agricultural cost-share funding available for implementing conservation practices on your farm. The late cover crop planting deadline for cost-share is November 15. If you have not signed up with JRSWCD and are planting a small grain cover over the winter on or before the 15th, we may still be able to get you approved for cost-share.

For more information click here.

Equine Resources

New!  Equine Resources page recently added!



Equine Vaccinations

By Charlotte Maxwell, Extension Agent- Agriculture and Natural Resources

In the state of Virginia, vaccinating your horse is not mandated by law. However, it is the responsibility of horse owners to make sure your records are up to date and your horse is vaccinated. Work with your veterinarian to determine which vaccines are essential for your horse. The number of horses you have, their age, activities and location are going to determine your vaccination plan. Rabies and Tetanus are endemic in Virginia, meaning that is regularly found in our area, and should be part of any vaccination plan. Wildlife is often not too far from our horses and they can transmit rabies to your horse and it is possible for rabies to then be transferred to you. Tetanus is an anaerobic bacterium found in the soil and is deadly if it comes into contact with an open wound. Thankfully, the vaccines for these two diseases are highly effective and low-cost.

You may be thinking that if you and your horse do not leave your farm, you are in the clear after the Rabies and Tetanus vaccinations. However, horses in Virginia are commonly vaccinated for viruses that are spread by mosquitos. In Virginia, mosquitos are present and active during the summer months and into the fall.  Eastern and Western Equine Encephalitis (EEE/WEE) virus affects the brain and spinal cord which causes weakness, depression, difficulty eating, impaired vision,        convulsions and fever. West Nile Virus causes an inflammation of the central nervous system and can be fatal. The signs for West Nile Virus include those of EEE/WEE. If your horse is showing  symptoms for either virus, contact your vet immediately. So far this summer, in Virginia, there has been one recorded case of West Nile Virus and one of EEE.

There are ways to prevent mosquito exposure on your property. Some of the prevention methods include: disposing of unwanted containers around your property that hold water, remove discarded tires, ensure your outdoor recycling containers have proper drainage and clear out your gutters every year. The goal is to prevent the mosquitos from breeding and stands of water is the most common breeding site.

Other vaccines to consider, especially if you travel with your horse or introduce new horses to your property, are Equine Influenza, Equine Herpes Virus I & IV, Potomac Horse Fever and Strangles. Please consult your veterinarian for designing a vaccination program for your specific farm.

Have a horse and have questions? 

Contact Charlotte "Charley" Maxwell. Extension Agent, 

via email at

Situation Analysis Report

Virginia Cooperative Extension takes pride in the premise that vital programming is based on the issues, problems, and needs of the people. A thorough analysis of the situation provides context for understanding and addressing these problems. Each local office updates their situation analysis every 4-5 years.

Situation Analysis Report, Chesterfield County, 2013