The 2022 Texas Master Gardener Association virtual conference, Community Connections, was held May 10-12, 2022. Kaufman County Master Gardeners compete in the Medium category for associations with 25 to 49 members. We won second place awards in two categories: Youth-Other for the Children’s Legacy Garden and Written Education for a series of horticultural articles for the Kaufman Herald.
Children's Legacy Garden in Forney
Beginning in March of 2021, Kaufman County Master Gardeners cooperated with the Sharing the Love Foundation and a number of other businesses and organizations in Forney to renovate an old 3/4 acre home site that had been donated for a garden space. Marian Stewart, founder of Share the Love Foundation, envisioned a garden everyone could enjoy and a place where senior and youth could learn from each other. The result was the Children’s Legacy Garden in Forney.
Volunteers to help with the project were recruited by forming a youth garden club, which grew to 19 members during the project, and overall volunteers from the community increased by 50%. Master Gardeners helped with planning the project and with plant selection. Plans were made for a walkway and a butterfly garden. Emphasis was placed on recycling and pallets were used throughout the garden as art projects and storage areas.
In 9 months, 23 raised beds were built, a butterfly garden was established with a granite walkway from the front gate. Seven picnic benches, a gazebo and library box were added. Over 200 pounds of fresh produce was distributed to senior residents in Forney in 2021.
Horticultural Series in Kaufman Herald
In 2021, Kaufman County Master Gardeners realized a long-held dream: a monthly gardening column in the local newspaper, The Kaufman Herald. While we had made previous attempts, they had stalled because we lacked a writer who could write copy for a newspaper. When Karel Holloway joined us, she brought years of newspaper experience from her previous career.
Holloway submitted two seasonally-appropriate article to the newspaper, and two were printed in February. Articles for the remainder of the year were planned and have been printed.
An article called “Plants that Really Grow in Kaufman County” was included in the Spring Home Improvement Supplement. Plants suggested by Master Gardeners were described, with accompanying pictures. This information was recreated for our website, kcmga.org, where the link to “What Grows Here” can be found.