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Master Gardeners of Sherburne County: Programs

2014 Garden Education Expo

The 10th Annual Garden Education Expo will be held on Saturday, April 12, 2014 at the Big Lake High School!

Our 2014 Keynote speaker Debbie Lonnee will speak on "Colorful and Blooming Shrubs for Minnesota Landscapes." Berries, flowers, colorful twigs and foliage all add to the landscape. Some new introductions and proven oldies will be presented.

Participants can also choose three informative and educational sessions on a variety of yard and garden topics presented by Master Gardeners and local garden experts.

2014 topics included:

Concurrent Session I
"Crafting Cool & Creative Containers" - speaker Don Engebretson
"Growing Orchids" - speaker Jayme Hennek
"Tomatoes" - speaker Madeline Leslie

Concurrent Session II
"Power and Permanence: Using Natural Stone in the Landscape" - speaker Don Engebretson
"Herbs-You've Got Them, Now What? - speakers Linda Sizer & Tana Haugen Brown
"Awesome Annuals" - speaker Jim Sherwood

Concurrent Session III
"Yes You Can! Landscape Design for Homeowners" - speaker Don Engebretson
"Preservation Gardening" - speaker Linda Sizer
"Tropical Plants for Summer Color" - speaker Jim Sherwood

Cost is $25 per person which includes seminars, handouts, educational and garden related exhibits, garden vendor booths, a continental breakfast and lunch (provided by Culver's). There's also an opportunity to talk with Extension Master Gardeners plus door prizes throughout the day and a silent auction.

Pre-register by April 4. After April 4, registrations and walk-ins will be $30.
Mail registration forms to the Sherburne County Extension Office with check payment.
Sorry, no credit cards or over the phone registrations will be accepted.

Click here for a copy of the registration and complete event brochure.

2014 Garden Expo Vendors and Educational Displays (more may be added):

Amy Lea 'n Me - handmade garden markers
Barthel's River Road Gold - maple syrup
Bob & Judy's Farm Market
Cat Tail Farm - canned jams, jellies and pickled produce
Claud's Clay - handmade pottery items
Daisy Blue Naturals - natural soaps and lotions
Dick's Designs - recycled metal garden art
Green Valley Greenhouse - plants and more
Hartle/Gilman Gardens - lily bulbs
Hollyhock Farm Alpacas - all things made from alpaca
Jayme Hennek - orchids
Jean's The Right Plant Place - garden tools, books, miniature gardening, etc.
Melby Works - garden art
Mid Northern Contracting - worm casting fertilizer
Minnesota Tree Care Advisors - info booth
Minnesota Water Garden Society
Nature Redone - rhubarb leaf molded bird baths
Notebooks and Journals by Nancy -handcrafted journals, notebooks
Photos by Bob and Val - garden and nature photography
Riverwood Crafts - wood vases and candlesticks
The Teashoppe Gallery - herbal teas and accessories
Tom Potvin - barn wood items
Treasurer and Trowels - garden art/ornaments
The Treehouse Garden Center, Jim Sherwood - plants
TSE Inc - stepping stones
Watercolor and Wire - wire sculpture and paintings
Woodland Wonders - nature photography
Sherburne County Master Gardeners

The Sherburne County Master Gardeners look forward to hosting you again in 2014!

Friend us on Facebook to learn about the latest Sherburne Master Gardeners happenings.

Jr Master Gardener Program

Several Sherburne County Junior Master Gardener activity days were held in 2012. No definite plans are set for 2013-14 but check back here for the latest info OR "Friend" us on Facebook to learn about the latest happenings at:

Pollinator Garden

Located west of the Elk River Library along the sidewalk, and across from the city hall complex on Orono Parkway in Elk River, MN.

You are invited to visit this special garden that was design just for pollinators! It was developed in 2008 with funds from a University of Minnesota Extension Master Gardener Grant. Designed by a Sherburne County Master Gardener volunteer and installed with the help of other Sherburne County Master Gardeners.

The purpose of this special garden is to increase public awareness of the importance of pollinators in our lives and provide a learning environment to view them. Plants include native and hybrid perennials, bi-annuals, annual, and herbs. All have been selected because they provide nectar or are host plants to the many pollinators we see in Minnesota, including bees and wasps (they do over 80% of our pollinating), butterflies, moths, and hummingbirds. For example, the milkweed plants provide both nectar and are host to the Monarch butterfly caterpillar.

The plants are symmetrical in keeping with the butterfly design, with labels on the right giving the common name and on the left, the Latin name. Some are in bloom this season, while others will bloom as they mature over the next couple of years. As you visit, watch for evidence of pollinators in action.

PollinatorGardenpic1.jpg Year one view after planting.

PollinatorGardenpic2.jpgYear two view.

PollinatorGardenpic3.jpgClose-up view.


Veggies by the Yard project

This special project was held in 2010 season. We invite you to read more about it and use the ideas to plan your next Veggie Garden. The project was an outreach of the University of Minnesota Landscape Arboretum as part of their summer exhibit on "Powerhouse Plants: Incredible Edibles" - You can discover a delicious bounty of ideas on how to eat fresh and grow your own! We grew these small-scale vegetable garden beds in Becker, Zimmerman and Elk River at the Sherburne County Community Garden sites coordinated by U of M Extension Sherburne County. The designs were featured in several demonstration sites throughout the state. There were five simple designs created by Arboretum gardeners to maximize harvest from a small space, with ideas for both first-time gardeners and veterans. Link to designs:

Read our BLOG, see the photos and read about what happened at our gardens in Elk River, Becker and Zimmerman at:

Thumbnail image for ZimmermanDigItPlot1-sm.jpg
This is the Dig It! plot at the Zimmerman Community Garden shortly after it was first planted at the end of May. Note the fencing as there are lots of deer in the area and the fencing seemed to keep them out of the plots. It did not however stop the gophers which proved to be a challenge at that site especially as the summer went along.

This is the First Timers Plot at the Zimmerman Community Garden Site shortly after it was planted.

The Elk River Veggies by The Yard plots planted in early June by Sherburne Master Gardeners (MG) and Junior Master Gardeners (JMG). They grew the "First Timers" and "Salad Lovers" plots. The kids and adults worked together grow and record data from four MG Variety Trails as well including Sunflowers, Mini Pumpkins, Bok Choi, and Bush Beans. Photo of the JMG kids and MG volunteers in action during the summer.