A few weeks ago, our association committed to forming our own Conservation Group, which will be a part of the Alabama Plant Conservation Alliance. Their three goals are: 1. To educate and promote conservation awareness; 2. To collect and report data of endangered or threatened plants; 3. To propagate plant material to be placed in the wild or shared with others to plant. Their first project will be to work with the Mohr’s Barbara Button species, currently a federally threatened plant.
Hugh Nichols, Chairman, and nine members of the committee met with Patrick Thompson at the Davis Arboretum in Auburn for training and a tour. During this visit the group agreed upon 5 immediate goals: 1. To be represented at the APCA fall meeting in Union Springs 2. To coordinate the INaturalist phone APP training to aid in plant identification. 3. Propagate plant matrrial provided to gain experience. 4. Identify potential habitants for rare plants in Chilton County. 5. Develop a community education plan.
Members of the committee include: Hugh Nichols, Chairman, Amelia Bloomfield, Chip Durham, Leslie Durham, Audrey Giles, Lynne May, Rick Miller, Alan Reed, and Trisha Williams.
We want to thank all the people that came out to our plant sale today at Goose Pond Park. Thanks to all of you, it was a huge success, more than we could ever imagine! We also want to thank all of our Master Gardener volunteers, there were many, so I won’t try to name all of them, but Thank You, you all did a great job! Also the weather cooperated so we won’t need our rain date of April 24. Here are some photos taken today by Diane Clapp and Gay West.
Today was a fun day!! Some of the Chilton County Master Gardeners spent their morning helping plant a garden in the Discovery Center at Jemison Intermediate School (JIS).
The Discovery Center has been made possible by grants from Cawaco RC&D Inc., Central Alabama Electric Coop, and also from donations from state representative Jimmy Martin (who passed away last year), Jason Powell and Petals from the Past, and several other volunteers. The garden consists of a Sensory Garden, a Pollinator Garden that includes several plants that are native to the state of Alabama, and in the near future, an Analemmatic sundial. They also have several raised bed vegetable gardens and a pavilion. Areas to be added include a wildlife habitat, a walking trail, a greenhouse and a weather station.
Rachel Mims is the gifted specialist teacher responsible for the outdoor classroom. Jason Powell, owner of Petals from the Past, was also instrumental in getting this project off the ground by designing the garden and donating all the plant materials, landscaping materials and being there to help. Also present today were several current and retired teachers and parents.
CCMGA looks forward to continuing to work on this project and we are grateful to be a part of it. This is what we are all about; teaching and beautifying the community.
Several Master Gardeners and Intern Class members enjoyed a trip today to the Tulip Festival at the American Village in Montevallo . The weather was perfect! Everyone also toured the American Village and stepped back to colonial days. Great reminder as to how thankful we should be to our forefathers for our independence! Thanks so much to our V. President and Program Chairperson, Charla Doucet for arranging this trip. If you’ve never been, plan now to go!
Photos by Susan Cleckler and Charla Doucet.
The Chilton County Master Gardeners 2019 Christmas Home Tour is now history. But what a Tour it was!! Records were broken in the number of tickets sold.
Speaking of history, the Tour this year was held in the historic town of Verbena, Alabama. The tour included the homes of Pat Barefield, Vivian & Dalvin Johnson, Elaine & Arnold McDaniel, Janine & Chris Speaks and Verbena United Methodist Church. Each of these locations has its own piece of Verbena history. Many guests had grown up in the area or had relatives in Verbena. Other guests were most interested in seeing the homeowners’ various decorating styles. Each house and the Church had its own style of decoration, each unique and beautiful. Guests surely gained great ideas for their own seasonal decorating.
CCMGA is grateful to the people of Verbena for the excitement and exceptional cooperation displayed. With every Christmas Home Tour, one of the best parts is the new friendships we establish. This year was no different! Thanks to all the Master Gardeners, the homeowners, and Verbena United Methodist Church for making this event such a great success! Article by Alice Broome Photos by Audrey Giles
On Wednesday, May 15, several Master Gardeners helped 2 classes of 3rd graders at Thorsby Elementary School plant a raised bed with annuals for a butterfly garden. The area is surrounded by the elementary and high school. There is already a butterfly bush and birdbath there and they have plans for a cement patio and tables. The children were really excited and they all wanted to help. The boys especially enjoyed watering the plants. This is an ongoing project and we will be back in the Fall to help the new 3rd graders plant fall and winter vegetables. Thank you, Christina Creighton for contacting us to help with this fun project!
The 2019 AMGA Conference has come and gone after 3 years of intensive preparation by Chilton, Shelby, and Autauga Counties. Everyone that attended enjoyed the speakers, facility, Whimsies Workshop, silent auction, the Hoe Down and Bertelone’s Italian Dinner. Our Silent Auction was a huge success with a wide assortment of items for everyone to bid on. The speakers were well received with Joe Lamp’l of “Growing a Greener World” a big hit. Dr. Neil Lamb, Jason Powell, Jane McCarthy “the Hosta Lady”, and Lelia Scott Kelly were just a few of our very entertaining speakers. The Whimsies Workshop sold out quickly and 40 more spots were immediately added. We were all exhausted when it was over, but very proud of how it all turned out!
The children at the YMCA havekept the garden they planted a few weeks ago weeded and watered. They have picked yellow crookneck squash, eggplants, cherry tomatoes, bell peppers and dill. The pole beans they planted are not big enough to harvest yet. When Harriett Jackson was there recently, they had vegetables in the kitchen to prepare and cook so they could taste what was grown in their garden.
The Master Gardeners that worked with the children on this project were Pat Farmer, John Wallace, Joyce Lawson, Jackie Hickman, Robin Cagle and Harriett Jackson.
A tour of Morgan Creek Vineyards was a great way for Chilton County Master Gardeners to spend a hot summer day on Friday, June 29th. The family-owned winery located in Harpersville, Alabama specializes in muscadine and fruit wines that range from dry to sweet. Charles Brammer, Jr, son of owners Charles Brammer, Sr and Mary Brammer, explained the process of making wine from harvest through bottling. He told us of the few insect problems and how they are controlled. Although they purchase most fruit from large growers they do have muscadine vines and blueberries on the property. Following our tour our gracious hostesses served samples of eleven wines — dry, semi-sweet sweet and fruit.
After the tasting several members went to Trisha Williams’ with their sack lunches and toured her garden. Trisha and her husband, Jackie, have a beautiful backyard with many large old trees, flower beds full of daylilies and other perennials, raised beds full of asparagus, and a vegetable garden with pole beans, squash, cucumbers, tomatoes, and much more. Thank you, Trisha, for providing us with a cool porch, ice tea, and your Heavenly Cake dessert after our tours!