Volume 28, Issue 6 June 2018
We had THREE big events this month, the first being the graduation of the 30 members of Master Gardener Intern Class 62. I had the pleasure of lunching with them on graduation day. They had many questions about where and when to gain more knowledge and volunteer in the community. I encouraged them to partner with a Master Gardener and to volunteer together. I am going to mentor two of them. — FarmBot here we come!
Thank you, Interns, for choosing the Bexar County Master Gardeners to hone your skills and assist in educating our county residents. Congratulations on your success and on your beginning in one of the most interesting endeavors you will ever pursue!
Basil Fest and Festival of Flowers closed out the May calendar. We had great volunteers with enthusiasm and knowledge of all things green. We had some new interns at both events and it was exciting to see them volunteering and learning from some of the seasoned members, and maybe teaching some of us, too. Coming in June, we have the Folklife Festival!
Our Orchid Sale was a success and we now have many members who want to grow and take care of orchids like our recent speaker, Luiz Vasquez.
We have a new Board of Directors Member at Large, Lynn Cox, and we are looking forward to working together with her this year.
June is filled with volunteer opportunities and trainings for all who want to attend:
- Learn Grow Eat and Go harvesting day, today
- Children’s Vegetable Garden Work Party, June 2
- 4-H Judging County Recordbooks, June 8 – 9
- Folklife Festival, June 8, 9 and 10
- Growing Texas Superstars for Summer Colors, June 9
- Youth Summer Camps, June 15
New opportunities will be in the Leaflet every week, so please stay tuned.
Grace Emery, President
Bexar County Master Gardeners
BCMG JUNE MEETING
Communities Supporting Agriculture
Hosted by the
Bexar County Master Gardeners
Thursday, June 21, 2018
1:00 – 3:30 p.m.
Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Office
3355 Cherry Ridge, Suite 208
San Antonio, TX 78230
Free and Open to the Public
Speaker: Chip Thompson
Chip Thompson, owner of Happy Earth Garden, is a local organic farmer and former professional accountant, with acreage just west of San Antonio. On his farm, Chip has 1 employee and 5 interns. Happy Earth Garden uses organic and sustainable farming practices, encouraging and supporting a small farm ecosystem of diverse plants, birds and pollinators.
In addition to speaking about his enterprise, Chip will be talking about his Communities Supporting Agriculture (CSA). According to the Happy Earth Garden website, CSA is a mutually beneficial relationship between a local farm and the community of people who receive the vegetables the farm produces. Members purchase a share of the harvest and in return receive a weekly supply of fresh seasonal vegetables picked at their peak of ripeness and flavor.
Bexar County Master Gardener (BCMG) Educational Seminars/General Meetings are held on the afternoon of the third Thursday every other month at the Texas A&M Agrilife Extension Office, Suite 208.
For more information contact BCMG President: President@bexarmg.org. 2 CEUs. Code: 003.
TMGA 2018 Conference Presentations Available!!
Couldn’t attend the Conference? …. or, attended and want access to some of the great presentations you saw (or missed)?
Here’s a link to many of the conference’s speaker presentations: LINK
Hello Fellow Master Gardeners,
I hope everyone enjoyed the Memorial Day weekend.
I recently visited community gardens on a trip to Nashville, Tennessee to learn more about different community gardens, how they operate, and what they are doing for their communities. The gardens I visited are part of an organization called the Nashville Food Project, (NFP) which has multiple community gardens, kitchen gardens, and a market garden. The community gardens are open to community members and a refugee community. There is also a market garden that is used by NFP volunteers and 7 refugee farmers who sell their produce at farmers markets. They can also sell to local restaurants through an online food hub, called Nashville Grown, and just recently through another program, Community Supported Agriculture (CSA). Editor’s note: Our June speaker will be talking about CSA’s.
This organization originally began in 2007, as an arm of the Austin-based nonprofit organization, Mobile Loaves & Fishes, but after 5 years of delivering food to people in need, they felt like they could do more to make a difference in Nashville with more creative solutions to the local problem of food insecurity with local funds and local volunteers. They wanted to incorporate gardens, fresh produce and nutrition into community meals.
In 2011, the Nashville Food Project was established as a nonprofit organization.
This organization relies heavily on volunteer help in every phase and aspect, in the gardens, kitchens and with their food trucks. These young people are doing so much for the people in Nashville and truly making a difference in their community. (For more information about this organization, check out their website, Nashville Food Project.) NFP has a small staff and they rely on the help of an organization called Hands on Nashville to supply the volunteers they need on a daily basis. The volunteers that were helping when I was visiting were from all over the country. Some are doing mission work for their churches. Some are students from the Midwest who came down for their spring break to volunteer, and others are people from the local area who lend a hand every week.
The NFP community gardens are organic and intensively grown, but they regularly replenish the soil with compost and cover crops. In addition to the gardens, NFP also has 2 kitchens where they use donated food and garden grown produce to prepare and cook healthy, hot meals. They have food trucks to distribute this prepared food along with the fresh produce from their gardens to people in need throughout the city of Nashville.
It was very interesting for me to see how they managed each large-scale garden as well as their organic practices. As Master Gardeners, we have developed gardening skills and knowledge and use them to help educate our community through our outreach programs. I enjoyed learning about how other groups are using these skills and the new ways they are educating and serving their communities. I have included some pictures from the different gardens, I hope you enjoy them.
Until next month, take care and stay cool!
Water Conservation Coordinator
FROM THE EDITOR: Anna’s photos of the Nashville Food Project follow. They are included in a .pdf format — that means that in the blog, you must access any pages beyond the first by clicking the down arrow in the page frame at the bottom left of the first page to see each additional page. Try it, below, after the first six photos where the page frame appears. You will encounter this feature in various Scion articles in the future, too.
BCMG Class 62 Graduated 30 Interns in May
BASIL FEST – 19 May
Festival of Flowers – 25 – 26 May
Photos by: Basil Fest – Grace Emery
Festival of Flowers – Barbara Lutz
Texas A&M AgriLife Extension provides equal opportunities in its programs and employment to all persons, regardless of race, color, sex, religion, national origin, disability, age, genetic information, veteran status, sexual orientation, or gender identity.