Archive for February, 2020

More Than The Bloom

article and photos by Gail K.

Feb. 15,2020:
Our speaker for the assoc. meeting was Linda W. A certified MG member, Linda has a professional focus in interior design.

Her program focus emphasized using other characteristics, not just the “flower,” of plants when designing our gardens.

The members were attentive as Linda skillfully described how using the foliage could enhance season long interest in our gardens.

Linda spoke to the importance of considering all aspects of a plant before “choosing” the right one. READ THE TAGS!! Look at the shape, color, texture & form of the foliage.

Using photos of her own garden to give examples-Linda’s talents in this field were visually obvious; we all enjoyed seeing the impact foliage could make in all aspects of our gardens.

Linda covered a lot of information-she went through the types of specific plants she finds most valuable based on their foliage to bring contrast and color to her garden.

Creating gardens are like writing a musical; we need rhythm. Blending or contrasting; use color to “move the eye” from one area to the next. A must-consider the undersides of leaves. Air currents & other movement
brings exposure and an unexpected variable.

With careful planning, we can all experience the heavenly notes of a garden symphony….the only thing left; to sit back & listen.


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Name That Tree

Naida sent this for me to add:

I thought this picture along with two questions
would be worthwhile for the Blog. I learned a new word connected with
this tree (and a few other hardwood trees) at my home and wanted to
share it with our readers. Once you have guessed the condition this
tree is showing look it up – very interesting information!

1) Name this tree pictured in my yard in late January.
2) What is the name of the condition shown on this tree?


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Gail has submitted the following post:


The Monroe County MG & Horticulture Assoc. held its first meeting of  2020 on Jan 25th.


Our speaker was C. Eddolls; an active-certified master gardener & member of the Monroe County Assoc.  Chris has a special interest in bees & enjoys her hobby of raising bees and harvesting honey which she sells @ local farm markets.
Chris using bees as a primary source, gave an in depth talk on “POLLINATION”  & it’s importance and how we, as master gardeners can play a role in protecting pollinators.
The group listened intently as
Chris went through the specific process of what happens when a plant is pollinated. *Flash back-10h grade biology*.
It was apparent early on that Chris is passionate about bees and has a wealth of knowledge on the subject.
I was intrigued by the Commercial Bee Farmers- just one fact she shared–the latest trend; the practice of raising bees then seasonally moving them (at night); farm to farm allowing farmers to achieve higher yields due in part to the pollination process–These hives aren’t for honey but for production of more bees.
She addressed the variety of bees; 450,000 species in Michigan; types of bees, characteristics which determine a “bee” and the various jobs bees have within a hive. 
The end of her talk dealt with topics that as master gardeners we need to be attentive to.  Simply; our very existence as humans is dependent upon our food sources-it is IMPERATIVE we protect our pollinators.
NEWS FLASH- butterflies are not considered pollinators.
She covered the 5 P’s- factors which impact
1    Pests            2. Pathogens     3.   Pesticides     4. Poor Nutrition     5.   Pedigree &/or diversity
Looking at the above factors–I can easily identify each one occurring within our very own county.  This
means, our call to action must be NOW.  As MG’s we must educate others and our actions must be based on our knowledge of the subject matter.
In closing; as Chris did, let me quote–Teddy Roosevelt:
“do what you can, with what you have and where you are!!!”
I love that quote.  NOW-let’s all get as passionate as Chris.A great spring project; plant a pollinator garden, even a small one.
              here are some fun facts–
>plant cat nip around plants to discourage aphids
>geraniums around a plant will discourage Japanese Beetles
>Nasturtiums will lure aphids
>4’oclocks will lure Japanese Beetles
> Yellow, blue & white colors will attract pollinators>>>
>replace lawns with low growing plants such as violets, clover & dandelions
OR simply, DON’T spray to prevent these pollinator
plants from existing in your lawn. (Warning: walking barefoot on such
a lawn may result in a bee sting to your footSunglasses)

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