Montgomery County Master Gardeners
Eleven Montgomery County Master Gardeners met on Oct. 11 at the 4-H Fairgrounds. The meeting was opened at 6:35 p.m. by club President Susan Smith. Pam Mahler gave the treasurer’s report and the previously distributed minutes for September were reviewed and approved by consensus.
Our next order of business was to review our many ongoing community projects as we reach the end another growing season. The 4-H flower bed we installed over the summer has come to a spectacular fall conclusion as the canna lilies finally reached their peak height and showcased the many other plantings at this bright new area at the fairgrounds.
The Master Gardeners also held their annual Fall Plant Exchange on Saturday, Oct. 2 at the Montgomery County Fairgrounds. All proceeds from the event were spearheaded to support our teaching garden at Nicholson Elementary School. Although the weather was challenging that day, we had an enthusiastic group of home gardeners join us with plants to exchange and questions to be answered.
Our “Growing Together” garden at Nicholson Elementary School is nearing the end of the growing season so plans were made to put the garden to bed for the season and prepare it for next year’s crops. We’ve hosted many eager young second- and third-grade students this year learning about seeds, soil, water and sunlight – everything it takes to make a garden grow. We also hosted the school’s Discovery Club and covered a lot of garden information including identifying the parts of plants, collected sunflower seeds, and harvesting cherry tomatoes. We found 4 swallowtail butterfly caterpillars in the parsley bed . . . with two of them destined for a classroom project. Last year this garden produced over 1,000 pounds of produce for donation to the FISH food pantry and we are trending close to that total again this year! Master Gardener volunteers have been happy to share their knowledge with all the Nicholson students .. . from the seed sowing to the final harvest.
To support our Master Gardener’s ongoing education, we presented a Dinner & A Movie Night after our September meeting. While watching the film, Biggest Little Farm, we learned about the hard and joyful work of farming and enjoyed a pot-luck meal.
Anyone interested in becoming a Purdue extension Master Gardener can register for the upcoming on-line training sessions which begin in February 2022. Visit: https://www.purdue.edu/hla/sites/master-gardener/events/virtual-purdue-extension-master-gardener-basic-training-statewide-3/ for information or contact the Montgomery County Master Gardener President, Susan Smith, at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’re always here to “Help Others Grow”.