Our November program was presented by Mary McCroan, a Master Gardener from Wetumpka, who is working toward her Advanced Master Gardener certification. Mary taught us about “Backyard Water Gardens.” She discussed the various types of water features from bubbling pots to ponds complete with streams and waterfalls. Location, sun, shade, style and budget should be considered when deciding to install a water feature. Mary shared examples of water features such as an inexpensive preformed pond to a large pond. She shared her experience in building her small and medium ponds and gave cost estimates for DIY (with help where needed) compared to having a professional install a similar water feature.
Chilton County Master Gardeners participated in the County’s Sesquicentennial celebration on October 27th by hosting a tent at the Celebration in the Park to sign up people for the 2019 MG Class. We also talked about the 2019 AMGA Conference we will be hosting at Clanton Performing Arts Center next May. In addition to that we had a huge yard sale at the Chilton County Extension Office that Friday and Saturday. Congratulations, Chilton County on your 150th Birthday!
Our program this month was presented by Mr. Glenn Huovinen. Mr. Houvinen, a Master Gardener in Autauga County, is working on his Advanced Master Gardener certification in “Gardening in Small Spaces”. His program was very informative, outlining the process of drawing a plan, getting a soil test, deciding what you like to eat and want to grow, and whether to grow in a raised bed or containers. He also explained about hooking up a rain barrel to your gutter system to help with watering. Mr. Huovinen talked about how to air prune and irrigate pots. He even touched on the art of Espalier for growing fruit trees, since this is a very space saving technique. I think everyone enjoyed his program on Gardening in Small Spaces.
We are excited and working hard on getting everything scheduled and set up. We have some excellent speakers, one being Joe Lamp’l from the television series “Growing a Greener World”, which is an award-winning PBS series. He was also host of Fresh from the Garden on DIY Network, and has been on The Today Show, Good Morning America, and the Weather Channel. The Conference is open to the public, but you must pre-register to attend. Registration starts in January, more information will follow.
By Trisha Williams
“Your Sanctuary Garden” was the theme of the 2018 Fall AMGA Seminar that several Chilton County Master Gardeners attended in Montgomery on September 27. Peggy Hill, writer for Alabama Gardener Magazine, shared ideas and inspiration for our gardens. Mary
Beth Shaddix , a marketing consultant, shared information about using color and edibles in our gardens. Mary Beth has written articles for Cooking Light Magazine, HGTV Gardens, and Garden and Gun and she and her husband own a wholesale nursery. The afternoon sessions included Tyson Farmer discussing attracting birds and Brian Dahle showing us ways to use water features in our gardens. We came away with wonderful ideas for our own gardens.
Thanks to Capital City Master Gardeners for planning this fun and informative seminar!
Our September 11 meeting was well attended. Martha Thornburg, who was a Chilton County Master Gardener a few years ago, dropped by to give us some of Ms. Jewel Robinson’s poppy seeds that she has religiously saved over the years. Many of us remember Ms. Jewel, and a JEWEL she was! She was just an amazing woman who could garden, cook, and work circles around most of us! And she was known for old fashioned poppies. Thank you, Martha for such a wonderful gift! Other guests included Nelson Wynn, our ACES regional agent, and Diane Clapp’s husband, Clem Clapp.
Our program today was presented by our own Rick Miller. Rick has relatives in Southeast Asia and has visited there twice in the past two years. He has many photos, so he presented a PowerPoint of all the many wonderful places he visited while there, and of course, many beautiful flowers! Thanks, Rick, it was a very interesting program.
Chilton County Master Gardeners met August 14 for their monthly meeting. Gay West, Chilton County Extension Coordinator, visited to announce 2 upcoming workshops that the Chilton County Extension office will be hosting. Dr. Robert Tubbs from Montgomery is having two business seminars on September 5 at the Alabama Power Conference Center. The first one is “Should I be a Business Entity: Which One?” starting at 9:00 AM until noon. The second is “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act” starting at 1:30 until 4:40 PM. There is a $15.00 charge for each seminar, so call and reserve your spot. For more information please call the CCEO, 205-280- 6268.
Another guest was Derric Scott, a member of the Sesquicentennial Celebration committee. Mr. Scott talked about all the events coming in October to celebrate Chilton County’s 150 birthday. These celebrations will be held October 21-27, 2018.
Our program was presented by Terese Goodson. Terese is from Montgomery, AL and is the current Alabama/Mississippi Daylily Society President. She is a retired educator and she and her husband farmed beet cattle for 40 years. She became a Master Gardener in 2012. She gave a very colorful and interesting program on plants that you can use in your landscape that will provide year around color. She shared a “Bloom Times” chart by Anne Waldo showing when many plants will be blooming during the year for this area. She also brought many plants from her own garden to show color and texture.
We had a total of 35 present.
The topic for our July meeting was Honeybees, so that’s the Buzz! Bill Evans, Master Beekeeper and current Vice President of the Alabama Beekeepers Association, told us about the importance of bees to pollination. He discussed the life cycle of bees and the jobs of each caste in the hive. Bees need nectar, pollen and water to survive. If a swarm occurs call a bee keeper to collect the bees. Local ACES offices keep a list of beekeepers that will collect swarms. Bill stressed the importance of buying honey from a beekeeper that you know so you get pure honey. For information on plants for bees check out this ACES publication: Nectar and Pollen Producing Plants for Alabama
Charles Walker has completed requirements for Master certification and we presented his badge and certificate. Congratulations Charles!
The ALabama Master Gardener Association Annual Conference was held May 3,4, and 5th at the Sheraton in Birmingham. Several Chilton County Master Gardeners attended. They got the word out about the 2019 AMGA Conference which their Association is hosting at the Clanton Performing Arts Center. They had a display table set up with pamphlets for the conference and a rolling banner displaying the conference logo and activities that will be going on. They expect to have a great turnout of Master Gardeners from all over the state for the 2019 AMGA Conference, which will be held May 8, 9, and 10th, 2019 in the heart of Alabama, 🍑🍑 country, Chilton County❗
Photos by Susan Cleckler and Trisha Williams
Several members of CCMGA met at President Sondra Henley’s garage this week to finish up the hyper tufa planters and tree faces they started last month. These items will be for sale at the upcoming yard and plant sale to be held April 21st at the Chilton County Extension Office. Pictured are Pat Farmer, Alice Broome, Debbie Housner, Jackie Hickman, Treasia Bennett, Wally Walters, Susan Cleckler, and Robin Cagle.