Personal Column

Amy K. Stone
Extension Educator
Ohio State University

This seasonal weekly column was published in the Toledo Blade (Toledo, Ohio). The column appeared from May - September in 2019 and was published each Tuesday.  In 2019 the Monday and Tuesday Editions of the Toledo Blade were published onlline only for the first time in the history of the paper.

The articles were written for the general public which included a very broad audience from seasoned gardeners to new sprouts, and individuals who may have not had an interest in horticulture and related topics, but may have wanted to learn more. Horticulture topics where identified and scheduled to go to press when they were the most timely and applicable. The subjects included: plants (i.e. viburnums, succulents, mosses and lawns); beneficials (i.e. bees and monarchs); pests including invasive species; and maintenance practices.

When writing the weekly column, it was intended to be educational, engaging and enjoyable, while at the same time, empowering  readers to grow their knowledge in horticulture. One of the articles was co-authored with the Family Consumer Sciences Educator to highlight collaboration and another program area. Readers were encouraged to reach out with questions related, or unrelated, to the weekly topics, or with suggestions for future articles.    

The readership of the Toledo Blade reaches across state lines and is estimated that the daily circulation in the first quarter averaged 46,572 and the Sunday circulation was 77,530. Additionally, the Toledo Blade had established three different digital publishing platforms including,, and  the Blade NewSlide and apps for each that work specifically on smart phones.

The column provided an avenue to increase awareness not only about horticulturally related topics, but also about Extension and the resources and services that are provided locally. Readers have been exposed to Extension as a result of the column as this was an opportunity of outreach for the author in 2018 and 2019.