Over Fifty Attend KC Master Gardener 2012 Spring Seminar and Plant Sale

MG Brad Ackerman demonstrates the lid for a DIY rain barrel. Photo: KCMGA.
MG Brad Ackerman demonstrates the lid for a DIY rain barrel. Photo: KCMGA.

The Kaufman County Master Gardeners hosted their annual Spring Seminar, “EarthKind: It’s Not Just Roses,” with a silent auction and a tool and plant sale at the Grace Fellowship Baptist Church on FM 1388 in Oak Grove on Saturday, May 12, 2012.

KCMGA president Rebecca Morrow opened the seminar with a brief introduction to Earth-Kind® Landscaping, a method developed by Texas AgriLife Extension, Texas A & M System. The objective of Earth-Kind® Landscaping is to combine the best of organic and traditional gardening and landscaping principles to create a horticultural system based on real world effectiveness and environmental responsibility. Earth-Kind® landscaping principles include: landscape water conservation, reduction of fertilizer and pesticide use, landscaping for energy conservation and reduction of landscape wastes entering landfills. Using Earth-Kind® landscaping principles and practices can create beautiful, easy-care landscapes, while conserving and protecting natural resources and the environment. The Aggie Horticulture Earth-Kind® website (http://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/earthkind/) has many resources for Earth-Kind® landscaping.

Katie Phillips, Kaufman County Extension Agent for Family and Consumer Sciences, encouraged attendees to participate in the “40 Gallon Challenge,” a multi-state program to decrease water usage. The program challenges each household to save 40 gallons of water every day. Ms. Phillips passed out a pledge listing ways to save water. Participants can choose ways they pledge to save water and register with the 40-Gallon-Challenge website (https://web.archive.org/web/20211125214703/https://40gallonchallenge.org/) to be included in our county and state totals. All residents, whether they attended this program or not, are encouraged to go to this website and participate in the Challenge.

Dallas County Master Naturalist and Master Gardener Tim Allsup discussed “Soil and Soil Ecology,” telling the story of what goes on under our feet. Participants then chose a mini-workshop [Pocket Gardens, Fairy Gardens, Container Gardening or Making a Rain Barrel] and enjoyed working with a Master Gardener in a small group setting. In addition, attendees visited information and vendor booths and shopped the silent auction and plant/tool sale.

Master Gardener Bonnie Hoover demonstrated how to make a pocket garden. Photo: KCMGA.
Master Gardener Bonnie Hoover demonstrated how to make a pocket garden. Photo: KCMGA.
Master Gardener Nancy Bowman brought an example of a fairy garden and constructed another in her workshop. Photo: KCMGA.
Master Gardener Nancy Bowman brought an example of a fairy garden and constructed another in her workshop. Photo: KCMGA.
Master Gardener Lynn Ackerman discussed container gardening and demonstrated planting techniques. Photo: KCMGA.
Master Gardener Lynn Ackerman discussed container gardening and demonstrated planting techniques. Photo: KCMGA.

The morning ended with a presentation on “Enabled Gardening” by Smith County Master Gardener David Gary. Mr. Gary, who is also a volunteer at the Dallas Arboretum, told the story of his personal evolution from bitterness, when first diagnosed with muscular dystrophy, to happiness in sharing his love of gardening, both as an Arboretum volunteer and as Texas’ first Master Gardener on Wheels. He showed photographs of his beautiful home landscape, which he constructed to be accessible to him as he gardens from his wheelchair. His landscape was included in the 2009 Smith County Master Gardener Home Tour.

The Kaufman County Master Gardeners hosted their annual Spring Seminar, “EarthKind: It’s Not Just Roses,” with a silent auction and a tool and plant sale at the Grace Fellowship Baptist Church on FM 1388 in Oak Grove on Saturday, May 12, 2012.

Flier for 2012 Spring Seminar, EarthKind: It's Not Just Roses
Flier for 2012 Spring Seminar, EarthKind: It’s Not Just Roses
Master Gardener Bonnie Hoover demonstrated how to make a pocket garden.
Master Gardener Bonnie Hoover demonstrated how to make a pocket garden.
Master Gardener Lynn Ackerman discussed container gardening and demonstrated planting techniques.
Master Gardener Lynn Ackerman discussed container gardening and demonstrated planting techniques.
Master Gardener Nancy Bowman brought an example of a fairy garden and constructed another in her workshop.
Master Gardener Nancy Bowman brought an example of a fairy garden and constructed another in her workshop.
Master Gardener and Rainwater Harvesting Specialist Brad Ackerman shows the screening on the top of a rain barrel.
Master Gardener and Rainwater Harvesting Specialist Brad Ackerman shows the screening on the top of a rain barrel.

The morning ended with a presentation on “Enabled Gardening” by Smith County Master Gardener David Gary. Mr. Gary, who is also a volunteer at the Dallas Arboretum, told the story of his personal evolution from bitterness, when first diagnosed with muscular dystrophy, to happiness in sharing his love of gardening, both as an Arboretum volunteer and as Texas’ first Master Gardener on Wheels. He showed photographs of his beautiful home landscape, which he constructed to be accessible to him as he gardens from his wheelchair. His landscape was included in the 2009 Smith County Master Gardener Home Tour.

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