Waupaca County Master Gardeners

There were 58 members in the Waupaca Co. MGA with 46 certified for 2015.

In 2014 we volunteered 414 hours in youth education
42 hours in community education
3,987 hours in support service
and participated in 1,040 hours in continuing education

This year we tried a new idea for collecting hours and dues. MGVs turned in both at the September meeting, resulting in less tracking down of both the dues and the hour sheets, and people could consult with the treasurer or recordkeeper if needed. A MGV with computer expertise set up a Facebook page for the MGA, and we discovered that many MGVs and the community have made use of the new technology to learn more about the group.

Major Accomplishments or Projects:wis-map-to shade for counties

  1. Two plants sales, one in spring and one in fall, are the main fundraisers for the MGA. With a theme of Right Plant, Right Place, MGVs offered information for buyers for each plant. The pots had an information tag detailing where the plant should be planted, when it blooms and who has grown it so that if the buyer has any questions the seller can be contacted.
  2. Because of the cold late spring the Children’s Gardens got a late start this year. The children in both New London and Iola learned the basics of gardening along with the how to preserve and use the produce in the garden. Along with the basics, the children learned how the animals and insects affect their gardens. There were class emphasis on frogs, butterflies and birds.
  3. Because of budget cuts, City of Waupaca looked to MGVs for help with their flower beds. The largest project was landscaping the bed around a new shelter in one of the main parks. Flowers were planted along the walkway leading to the shelter as well as a red, white and blue flower garden in the design of an American flag around the flag pole.
  4. Gardening books are given to each of the libraries in Waupaca Co. The librarians choose the books with guidelines for the choice from the MGVs. Money has also been provided to purchase magazine subscriptions. A book was given in memory of a MGV to the library closest to her home.
  5. A committee of MGVs has been formed to act as an information source on invasive species. They provided a list of invasive plants before the plant sales so that invasives would not be sold. The list is available to the public to educate them about what is invasive and how to control it.

Highlighted Project: Education Programs at Monthly Meetings

This year we had a renewed emphasis on including an educational component to all projects and meetings. For each of our monthly meetings programs were scheduled that were at least an hour long and could be counted for continuing educational hours. The programs were varied and interesting, ranging from learning about cranberries to orchids, garden photography to floral design. In October MGV Lee Sommerville, author of the book Vintage Wisconsin Gardens presented a talk on gardening in the late 19th and early 20th century. A 2-part program in April and May, also open to the public, was given by Rob Zimmer The Yard MD columnist for The Appleton Post Crescent and Gannett Media. Through his PowerPoint presentation we visited some of the finest public and private gardens in Wisconsin the first month and nurseries and green houses in the second month. Both programs were open to the public. In the summer months we traveled to gardens in Waupaca County and beyond, including a peony garden near Marion where the members learned to about planting and growing peonies; Graziano Gardens, a new nursery and greenhouse near Pine River where owner Shelly Christie gave us a tour of the garden and talked about the unusual plants; and the private garden of MGV Dorothy Shaver. Her shade gardens on a hillside offered some interesting ideas for gardening in this type of area.