Congratulations Interns!

Master Gardener Interns have had a difficult time earning volunteer hours to become certified this past year due to, of course, COVID 19 restrictions. CCMGA is pleased to congratulate Patricia Agee, Gail Brooks, Linda Church, Julie Garris, Sharon Hosch, Jane Rabey, Jim Rabey and Rae Ann Wright on becoming certified Alabama Master Gardeners during this difficult year. Volunteer activities included not only gardening activities but even mask making! There are eight more 2020 Interns working towards their certification and we encourage them to help with upcoming Master Gardener volunteer opportunities as much as possible!

Patricia Agee
Jim Rabey
Linda Church
Jane Rabey
Sharon Hosch getting certificate
Julie Garris
Rae Ann Wright

Great Workday in the Demo Garden.

Chilton County Master Gardeners showed up and showed out for our Monday Demo Garden workday! There were 14 of us (one non member-Treasia Bennett’s willing spouse) to dig, divide and replant or pot up daylilies, prune roses; dig up and replant dwarf azaleas; clean out the Herb bed; trim the vines in the shade garden; put out pine straw, and prune the box woods in the Knot Garden. Several of our interns and newly certified members have agreed to be in charge of some of our beds and areas. They are Patty Frye, Gail Brooks, Joan Crocker, and Sharon Hosch (helping Betsy Smith). As always, ANY of our members are encouraged to come out and help when you can. Our work days this fall will be cut to one instead of two, which will be on Thursdays, 8-10a.m., weather permitting.
Photos by Audrey Giles (not pictured).

Alice Broome and Larry Jones working in the Storage Shed Garden

Fall Demo Garden Cleanup

Another great workday at the Demonstration Garden! Thanks to all the interns that turned out and some of our regular members too. Got a huge yucca plant dug up, divided, and relocated (thanks to John Higginbotham and Ron Herbster); moved an aster, dug and divided some hostas and took some home to pot up for plant sales, pulled MORE nut grass (and sprayed some too), spread some mulch, pruned some roses, filled bird baths, and cleaned out the keyhole garden. A VERY good morning! Photos by Diane Clapp & Audrey Giles

Helping With the Beef Cook-Off

Last Friday, March 6, Chilton County Master Gardeners and interns helped with registering the participants at the 4-H Beef Cookoff, which is sponsored by the Chilton County Extension Office and the Chilton County Farmers Federation.
L to R- Interns Linda Church, Karol Collier M.G. Harriett Jackson, Interns Jane Rabey, Jim Rabey, and Julie Garris. Not pictured, MG Pat Farmer.

Wonderful Japanese Maples

Japanese maples, what a wonderful topic for a rainy March day! Our speaker for our Chilton County Master Gardener meeting was David Doggett, a Jefferson County Master Gardener and volunteer at Aldridge Gardens, who grows over 70 cultivars of Japanese maples at his home in Irondale. He discussed choosing a site, selecting a variety, companion plants and planting. David has donated and planted 51 (48 cultivars) Japanese maples at Aldridge Gardens.

There are cultivars to meet the needs of most gardeners: small or taller, upright or weeping, fine leaved or more coarse, textured leaves or smooth. Colors often vary from season to season but include reds, pinks, light greens, apricot, yellow, darker greens and more.

Weed Science and Propagation

Our Master Gardener Intern class on March 4 started with a visit from Renee Thompson,  ACES Outreach Coordinator for the Harvest For Health program. She told us a little bit about the program and how she loves working with the people involved in it. For more information about this amazing program, go to https://www.aces.edu/blog/topics/lawn-garden/harvest-for-health-making-an-impact-on-cancer-survivors/

Our first speaker for the day was Shane Harris, Tallapoosa County Extension Coordinator, on Weed Science and Control. 

After lunch, Dr. Arlie Powell, owner of Petals from the Past, Ph.D. in Agriculture, University of FL, and former Auburn Professor, taught Propagation. Both speakers kept your attention! We also had Master Gardeners Lamar Giles and Karen Mims there auditing the classes. It’s always good to refresh your memory!

Touring Tulip Festival at American Village

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.

Front row, , L to R MGs Harriett Jackson, Susan Cleckler, Wally Walters, Joan Barber, Intern Ruby Moberg and daughter
Back row, L to R – MGs Rick Miller, Charla Doucet, Interns Peggy McGraw, Patty Frye, Kathryn Martin, Julie Garris, MG Lee Walters, Intern Patricia Agee.

Growing Tomato Plants From Seeds

Master Gardener Lanell Baker did a short program February 26 on starting plants from seeds at the 2020 Intern Class. She did a hands on demonstration of transplanting tomato plants grown from seeds. She explained how to get them ready to plant outdoors. ‘Hardening off‘ is the process of gradually acclimatizing indoor-sown plants to outdoor conditions. For most plants, begin hardening off a week before the final frost date for your area. Water plants before they go outside.

Bethany O’Rear was the main speaker, teaching “Plant Care and Management Pruning.

Thanks, Gay West for these photos.

Master Gardener Lanell Baker
Bethany O’Rear teaches Plant Care and Management Pruning

Soils and Plant Nutrition

Our Feb. 19th speaker was Dr. Charles Mitchell, retired Ph.D., CCA, Professor Emeritus, Dep. Crop, Soil and Environmental Sciences, Auburn University. Dr. Mitchell taught “Soils and Plant Nutrition” to our Master Gardener interns. His program is always very interesting and most informative. Thanks, Dr. Mitchell!!

The Interns paying attention!