WOW!! The 2019 Spring Children’s Garden produced a lot of carrots this year. They were not ready to harvest back in April when the first graders came to harvest their lettuce, spinach and radishes so they were left to grow until the end of the school year. These were harvested, cleaned up and taken to East Avenue Primary School the day before the last day of school, May 23. The students were super excited about getting a bag of carrots to take home. Thanks to all the Master Gardeners who helped with the Children’s Garden this spring.
March already... time sure is flying by and there's nothing happening at the Gonzales Master Gardeners except the Spring Plant Sale!!
Okay that's not exactly true... not even close, lol. There are other things that have been going on; the Children's Garden has been planted, the new beds at the Pace Building are getting filled with soil, and they're almost ready for some tomato plants! The curtains have been installed inside the Pace Building with a noticeable difference in the noise and echo. The fruit trees have been fostered so they can be cared for until the fall sale.
The Plant Health specialist training went off well, and sounds like it's setting a high bar for future specialist training courses. It sounds like all Master Gardeners will benefit from this new approach, not just the specialists!
The irrigation system has been set up with the black walnut trees at the Pace Building, and should help germination rates quite a bit.
Maintenance on the PACE building has brought about some welcome changes. It included windows being repaired and painted, ceiling painted, curtains added and other general maintenance.
By the time I get this posted the Texas Master Gardener conference will be over. Three of our members planned to attend, and we can look forward to some information from them about events there. The South Texas Home Garden and Environmental show in Floresville is also over by now, and we had members there as well, manning a booth.
So, yea, there's always things going on in the GMG, and I'm sure I missed almost as many as I mentioned... BUT...the Biggie is still the Spring Plant Sale. If you didn't make the meeting March 1st and you didn't sign up on the sheets for volunteering... basically show up at Texas Heroes Square on Friday March 23rd at 8:30. If we don't need people there you can go to the greenhouse around 9 a.m. On sale day, Saturday March 24th we start at 7 a.m. Try to be there by 8 for final instructions and questions...
Well, another year is nearly in the books, and the highs and (ahem) lows of the gardens (at least MY gardens) are fortunately, soon to be forgot... For now, I am content to have this small break from canning more Salsa Verde from the veritable unending supply of green tomatoes, just to sit here and peck out this post.
I sure hope you had many enjoyable moments from your gardening ventures this year, and if you’re like most of us, you learned a few things along the way.
Here at the Gonzales Master Gardeners, we had our Winter Social, which was a great success, and well attended despite the threat of poor weather. There was a wonderful spread of good food, as usual, and many smiling faces. I have to think we have a collection of some of the better cooks in the area, and we sure do benefit from them when it is time for a feast! After the meal, we had a meeting, and ironed out some of the plans for the 2018 Spring Plant Sale.
I was lucky enough to attend 2 classes recently, Drip Irrigation, and Practical Fruit at Home. They were captained by Jim and Gail Johnson, respectively, and both very informative, and judging by the attendance, very popular. I would like to take this opportunity to encourage veteran members to attend some of the classes when they can, since they do change from time to time, and the Fruit and Nut class was a good example of that. As part of the Drip Irrigation class, Jim also had some new planting calendars he put together that should be a great help.
Myself, I will be getting a few things started in the greenhouse this weekend already.. Some cuttings from tomatoes I might try to over-winter, some asparagus seeds, pepper seeds, and eggplant seeds for my spring garden. as well as some chives, onion, and leek seeds. (The seeds for the Spring Plant Sale need to wait a little still.) I will be planting some of my plants out in the garden before the sale, and I have to kinda shuffle seed flats since I have only one heat mat. In the garden, I'm planning on planting some kohlrabi, spinach, lettuce, chard, turnips, and rutabaga.. with row covers, I should be able to get some of them to produce before January is over. With the weather crazy and warm as it has been, they should sprout fine and if they are warm enough to sprout, they should be fine.
The 3rd grade Black Walnut Classes went off very well. Many happy 3rd graders passed through the PACE building, as they participated in their 3rd project with the Gonzales Master Gardeners in so many years. They learned a bit of history of the region and the Black Walnut trees. They learned about Natural Resources, Renewable, and Sustainable Resources, and they planted some Black Walnut trees. A lot of Black Walnut Trees. Congrats to the efforts of Donna Bell, and her team for a successful day with the kids. As far as I could tell, everyone enjoyed it, and the kids seemed interested and eager to learn.
I will sign off here for this post, and until next year.. Have a fun, Merry, and above all, safe, Christmas and New Years!
Well, it’s already November, and our thoughts are slowly turning from our gardens to the holidays... soon, 2017 will be a just memory, and 2018 will be breathing down our necks. I started thinking about what I could write about a week or so ago, and thought, hmm, there is just not much going on... Well, except this and that, and... ok, there is plenty going on, lol.
Before long, we will be faced with the Spring Plant Sale!!! So, this is the time we need to be getting ready.. now... There are plenty of signup sheets at PACE for grow teams for various things. We need to sign up to get those precious plants ready for the sale, so don't be shy, lol. We also need some folks who can foster some trees for the 2018 Fall tree sale. So, even though the days are getting short, and the daylight savings is messing with our sleep, there are still plenty of projects to volunteer for here at the Master Gardeners. Plants need to be started soon, so at the Winter Social be ready to sign up!!
Did I say Winter Social? See.. the year IS passing us by... December 7th is the first Thursday in December. Look for an e-mail from Fran about food to bring to the event, and plan on bringing your significant other, or a good friend, or someone interested in gardening, or..? There is always excitement in the air, and food enough for all.
Class 8 is well underway, and soil samples are due at the next class on November 14th. Entomology and Integrated Pest Management is the topic for that class. Molly Keck is passionate about bugs, so you’re sure to enjoy the class! Don't forget to bring your soil samples!
The Gonzales Master Gardeners are always interested in improving things at PACE, and many project ideas have been floating around recently. If you have an idea that you think would really improve things, and help further us in our mission to serve our community, feel free to explain it best you can in an e-mail to one of the board members.
With the end of the year comes one more thing for the Gonzales Master Gardeners - Membership Dues. Don't forget to bring your $20 to the Winter Social, or mail it in, if you haven't already. Dues are due by Dec 31st.
SO.. Christmas, there, I said it.. it is far away, and us guys have at least 7 weeks before we start thinking about shopping or anything... BUT, if you count back 6 weeks from the glorious day.. you get November 12th. That is supposed to be the day to repot any Amaryllis bulbs you have hiding in a cool corner of your fridge, at least if you try to get them to bloom for Christmas. Choose a nice big heavy pot, new potting mix, and leave about 1/3rd of the bulb exposed. water it well, and give it the best sun you can. Just as soon as it starts showing signs of sending up leaves, start with the nursery trick of weakly fertilizing weekly, with liquid fertilizer, and maybe with luck, you will have that beauty blooming for Christmas morning!
Ok, so there IS a lot going on in November, but there was no mention of the vegetable garden, lol, surely, it's done for the year... Sure, the Spring garden is long gone, but this is Central Texas, it's always time to plant something! Carrots, Chard, Collards, Lettuce, Multiplier Onions, Parsley, Radishes, Spinach, and Turnips can be planted still. You might even have time to put out Broccoli Cabbage, and Kohlrabi transplants, if the weather is nice... While you’re in the spirit, clean up the greenhouse.. you’re gonna need it real soon!
Ok, it's time for me to get some breakfast before the Sun comes up so I can Buzz around and do some of these things!
The new Master Gardener training classes begin soon but there is still time to join. Veteran Master Gardeners are welcome, and encouraged to come to the first class to welcome the new students! September 12th at the PACE building, 8:00 a.m.
Hurricane Harvey dealt a lot of misery to many of our neighbors and some of us. Our thoughts, and our hearts, and our prayers go out to those in need and we hope for their swift recovery. Let's hope the rest of the hurricane season will be more gentle to our fellow Texans. I say this even as Irma bears down on Florida... pray that our neighbors to the east will stay safe.
The Fall tree sale had to be canceled due to the suppliers not having trees after Harvey. In our spring plant sale we will have some that we have grown ourselves and hope to be back next fall with a bigger and better tree sale.
With the weather changing and cooling down just a little, a lot of attention is shifting to the fall vegetable gardens. Don't forget that perennials need your love to! It's time to plant, and propagate many of them as well! Some of the Master Gardeners are collecting extra perennials in pots to grow for the Spring plant sale. If you have more than you want, consider the same, or offer your extras to the GMG members to work with!
Time for me to buzz back to my garden... so much to do.. Happy gardening!
Our Master Gardener Classes continued this month with a how to on Vegetable Gardening presented by Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Bexar County Agent David Rodriquez. It was held Jan 17th.
Feb 1, we start the month off with a free seminar held by Jacob Carter of Gonzales Outdoor Power from noon to 1 (lunch will be served). His topic will be "Preventive Maintenance and Proper Care of Lawn Equipment". The event is open to the public and will be held at the PACE bldg. (located at 623 N Fair St.)
Our monthly GMG member lunch meeting is scheduled for Feb 2nd and will be hosted by Nancy S and Melissa.
Feb 7th, Texas AgriLife Extension Horticulturist Bill Welch will teach our new MG students about Southern Gardens.
Looking forward to our first Master Gardener Home Fruit Specialist Southern Texas Training Program to be held on Feb 9th and 10th.
The MG class, to be held on Feb 21st, presented by Texas AgriLife Extension Plant Pathologist Kim Cochran, will teach Plant Pathology and how to identify plant problems.
And as always there are all sorts of things happening behind the scenes like planning new programs, preparing and growing plants for the Spring Plant Sale and so on. For more on that and many gardening tips be sure to check out our monthly Newsletter. To do so just click on the "More" tab above and then click on Newsletters.
Master Gardener, Carolyn P demonstrated how insects work for us in everyday life at the "Ag in Classroom" event hosted by the Gonzales Farm Bureau for all Forth Grade Students in Gonzales County, where over 400 students begin to understand how everyday agriculture effects their lives.
Dee lead the annual East Avenue "2nd Grade Class Sessions" which began in October, the first of four sessions in which the students learn about the Parts of the Plant.
A new board of officers was elected, come join us as we welcome them at our "Members Monthly Lunch Meeting" beginning at noon,Thursday Jan 5th. Come on out... don't miss the fun! Carolyn W and Jacky will host this month.
We have a newly certified Landscape Design Specialist in our county. Congratulations to Master Gardener, Jim M!...he's ready to answer any questions you may have.
Our first annual "Tree Sale" was a success! We offered ornamental shade trees, fruit and nut trees, grape vines, and flowering spring bulbs. Master Gardeners provided information on how to plant and care for these trees. Special thanks to Donna for leading the sale and to the Gonzales High School Anchor Club for their assistance!
At the annual Gonzales Elementary School "3rd grade Black Walnut Restoration Program" students learned about the restoration and conservation of the Black Walnut Tree. This year 230 students planted walnut seeds. Master Gardeners collected and prepared both seeds and pots for planting.
The date has been set for the annual "Spring Plant Sale" held at the Texas Heroes Square in downtown Gonzales for March 25th, 2017! Mark Your Calendars!
The "1st grade Children's Garden Program" begins this month, a total of 5 sessions are scheduled. Many volunteers are needed to help out. In the classroom, every first grade student learns about how a seed develops into a plant. The students will create plant markers for their gardens, they will then plant seeds (carrots, radishes, lettuce, and spinach) in the garden beds. Once the plants begin to grow the students will visit the garden to observe their progress, and finally in April they will re-visit the garden to harvest their produce.
The Gonzales Master Gardeners are excited to host the 1st Master Gardener Home Fruit Specialist Training to be held on Feb 9th and 10th, chaired by Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Specialist Monte Nesbitt.The program will focus on growing fruit in the southern half of the state.
A big Congratulations to our organization once again! The Soil and Water Conservation District of Gonzales County has acknowledged the Gonzales Master Gardeners with their "Friends of Conservation 2016 Award". Way to go y'all!
Summer is for Fun! And there was fun to be had at Fran's this summer. While we enjoyed great food and conversation, we also learned something new! We played in the sand and cement, making leaf castings for our gardens. These will be used as decorations and as water sources for wildlife. Thanks go to Pam and Fran!
We also enjoyed a tour of the Seville Growers commercial greenhouses in Flatonia and lunch afterwards at Robert's. Thanks, Shirley for organizing that!
We enjoyed a short summer break and are now back to work. Arline led us in the challenge of cleaning up the Children's Garden (located at the corner of Moore and St. Louis St., next to the Eggleston House). This is always a very big job in the fall. Now the garden will be ready for this year’s first grade students! Thanks go to Arline and all those who helped.
September 13th, we welcomed class # 7! It was a full house, many members showed up to greet, meet and welcome eight new students. As with each year, we are so looking forward to working with, teaching, making new friends and growing our awesome organization! Welcome Debra, Jan, Rhonda, Nadine, Sandy S., Betsy, Laura and Jeff.
Wanted to let y'all know this may be the last weekend to show support to those Master Gardeners at the Gonzales Farmers Market this season. Saturday 9:00 am til noon located under the portico at Laurel Ridge Antiques, 827 N. Saint Joseph St. Farmers Sandy, Mike and Cindy have lots of tomatoes, preserves, eggs, squash, onions, peppers, eggplants and more! Come on by and grab some goodies!
Congratulations To Us!!!
The Texas Master Gardeners Association 2015 Awards were handed out at this year's State Convention and the 2nd place awards for the "Outstanding Individual Master Gardener" (medium size group) goes to Gail. Way to go Gail, you Rock! The awards for the 1st place "Outstanding Education Program" (medium size group) goes to our Second Grade Program with GISD students lead by Dee and Gail. WOO HOO! The awards for the 2nd place "Outstanding Written Education" (medium size group) for our Website goes to Jo and Gail, great job ladies! Special thanks and recognition goes to Arline for presenting the GMG submissions in accordance to the entry guidelines. You are Awesome! And for all those members who make our organization what it is today, we wouldn't be here without you. Here's to another year of hard work and dedication! Congratulations to all!!!
Welcome to the Buzz where you can find out what’s happening in the Gonzales Master Gardeners and learn more about our activities as an organization. One thing for sure, we are always busy!