Leaflet – December 18, 2019


2020 Cashier Training: All MGs who plan to work a BCMG plant sale as a cashier during 2020 should plan to attend one of the two scheduled Cashier Training sessions:  Fri, Jan 24 or Sat, Jan 25; 1:30-3pm each day at the Extension Office in the Large Classroom. For questions or more information, email President-Elect Lynn Cox.

Kudos from Vicki Jamvold, Poinsettia Sale Chairperson
Everyone who worked on Friday, Dec 6, to unload and distribute Poinsettias did a fantastic job. You all were a BIG HELP!  Plus, everyone had FUN!  Thank you all again!
AND, if you purchased some gorgeous poinsettias at the BCMG Sale and you want to keep them beautiful now and healthy for the long term, take some advice from David Rodriguez, County Extension Agent • Horticulture:  Care of Poinsettias in San Antonio.


Don’t Forget: If you attended the BCMG Holiday Party on Thu, Dec 5, you can record 1 CEU, Code 001 towards your 2019 requirement. 

And, here are some approved online sources for you:

Please record any/all of these CEUs as Code 001, and include the Title for each. If you have any questions, email Lisa Nixon, Membership Coordinator.

HOT OFF THE PRESSES!  (Can we say that in the digital world?)
Take a minute to read a new article at AGRILIFE TODAY on the Earth-Kind Fruit Tree Seminar slated for January 24th, here in San Antonio. 

 COMING IN 2020 
The Bexar County Master Gardeners YouTube Channel 

The BCMG YouTube Channel will include some of the BCMG Brown Bag presentations and presentations given by speakers at our general meetings. In January, the BCMG YouTube channel will present Jay White, owner/editor of the Texas Gardener magazine. Jay will share his love for organic gardening, along with some great stories and trivia about gardening.
Remember, the YouTube Channel does not goes live until January 1, 2020.  

NOTE:  The Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Office and BCMG offices will be closed  on Tuesday & Wednesday, December 24 & 25  for the Christmas Holiday and on Wednesday, January 1st for New Year’s Day.

Formerly known as Birdies for Charity®, Champions fore Charity is a fundraising program that provides participating charities and schools the opportunity to generate contributions through the Valero Texas Open. Champions fore Charity is a no-cost program that gives 100% of the funds raised back to the participating organizations, plus incentives including a 7% match.

Our Bexar County Master Gardeners have been a part of the Valero Texas Open Birdies for Charity® fundraising program for many years and the funds we have received have been used to support our projects and purchase needed materials. Your previous donations are truly appreciated and future donations will help support our mission.

If you want to donate before the year’s end, Champions fore Charity flyers will be available at the BCMG office or contact Barbara Lutz for one. There is still the opportunity to win a big prize by correctly guessing the number of Birdies during the pro-am and the tournament.

You can also donate online and click on Donate Now. Donors have the ability and flexibility to pay in advance, or to be billed after the tournament.

Email Barbara Lutz if you have questions about the Champions fore Charity program.


BCMG Reporting Guidelines for Volunteer Hours (VHs) and Continuing Education Units (CEUs)

Reporting our hours is important for two reasons:

  • Annual Certification – BCMGs must volunteer 30 hours (VH), receive 6 hours of continuing education (CEUs), and attend two BCMG monthly meetings.
  • Funding – Our hours of service (VHs) are reported by AgriLife Extension Service to the state and all funding organizations with accuracy very important, esp. for funding organizations.

See the details of these clarification points on reporting hours at the Members page of our BCMG Website:

  • Report hours as soon as you can
  • Travel “time” is not volunteer time
  • No double dipping
  • Use accurate hours
  • Record hours to the nearest 1/2 hour

NOTE:  Any MG who is not going to meet their required volunteer and/or CEU hours for certification, but wants to continue their active MG status for 2020, should contact David Rodriguez early. Please provide him an explanation of your situation, and a summary of the hours you have recorded in VMS for 2019.

BCMG January Rodeo Kick-Off Meeting
Thursday, January 16, 2020

Bring your favorite Chili, Cornbread, or other dish to share! And don’t forget your calendar to sign-up for Rodeo Shifts. Learn all about the BCMG location, greatest news on 2020 Rodeo, the 2020 Rodeo Tomato, and much more! 1 CEU.  BCMG Code: 002.
Meeting Agenda:
6:00-6:40:  Chili Dinner, Rodeo Shift sign-ups, New Badge & Merchandise pick-up
6:40-7:40:  BCMG Business Meeting & Rodeo Information
7:30-8:00:  Rodeo Chairs – Introduction & Announcements
*You can also pay your annual dues of $25 (payable by Dec 31st) before the late fee ($40 total) begins Feb. 1.

The SA Stock Show & Rodeo will take place Feb 6-23, 2020. MGs must have 3 forms signed: a Release and Indemnification form, a Peterson Brother’s Release (for parking) and a Van Release (for riding the shuttle van). All forms will be available at the office and can be turned into Mike, BCMG Office Manager. Deadline is January 16, 2020.  Notarization is not needed this year!  Or mailed to: ATTN: Rodeo Form, Bexar County Master Gardeners, 3355 Cherry Ridge, Ste. 208, San Antonio, TX 78230

BCMGs:  Check the 2020 Rodeo page under the Members tab on the BCMG website for all the BCMG Rodeo information and updates.  For more information, email BCMG Rodeo Chair, Grace Emery.

Calling All Rodeo Construction Workers!
It’s time to get organized!  Please email Grace Emery your name, email address and cell phone number.  We plan to use emails or text messages to communicate the work agenda for each construction day.  Appreciate you volunteering now to be a member of the 2020 Rodeo Construction Team.

SIGN-UP for VOLUNTEER EVENTS using the Event Calendar in the VOLUNTEER MANAGEMENT SYSTEM – VMS.Find number of volunteers still needed, who has signed up, Project Code and even request an event reminder! REMEMBER: If you volunteer for any event and have a last minute change of plans, please contact the coordinator listed on VMS to let them know!

Need One to Three, Dedicated & Committed, Volunteers for a New Youth Gardening Program!  
Blessed Sacrament Academy Children’s Development Center, located in the historic Mission Concepcion area, is starting a new interactive garden in hopes of supporting and rehabilitating local vulnerable families in need. Advise and assist in path and raised bed construction, irrigation installation, weeding, watering, transplanting, and general maintenance. Dates & times TBD as project still in planning phase. Please email Andrea Mastromatteo or David Rodriguez if you are interested in joining this community effort.  You can learn more about the history of Blessed Sacrament Academy online.

MGs Who Have Completed SABOT Culinary Docent Training!  

Many Shifts Still Open!! Come and complete your annual volunteer certification hours!  Schedule your shifts today!  December shifts are 10am to 1pm on Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, plus Mon, Dec 23.
Plan ahead for your January Calendar: shifts will again be 10am to 1pm on Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.
REMEMBER, if you volunteer for just one shift each month in 2020, you earn 36 Volunteer Hours!!  And, that covers your certification volunteer hours for the year!!  
VMS  has all the December dates/times (January coming) for sign-ups! VMS Code 0100. 

Be the Master Gardener with All the Answers! Volunteer for a shift on our “Ask a Master Gardener” service. Check our website page for more information on this service. And, email Denise Perez or Nicolas Vazquez to volunteer!  

See all the Details for Classes in the Bexar County area on the MG Calendar! Classes listed below may be of special interest to you:

LUNCH & LEARN – Home Gardening Brown Bag Series: Planting Spring Vegetables onFri, Jan 10 from Noon-1pm at the County Extension Office. 1 CEU. Code 001. Bring your lunch and gain information on consumer horticulture. See the flyer for all classes offered in 2020!

Fruit Tree Seminar, hosted by Texas A&M AgriLife Extension. You won’t want to miss this one! Everyone wants their own orchard!  Learn from the best experts in the area on Fri, Jan 24, 2020 from 8:35 am to 5:10 pm at the San Antonio Botanical Garden. Flyer & Agenda here. Read the great article at AGRILIFE TODAY!  Space is limited and this class will fill up, so be sure to register early!  No registrations at the door. 7 CEUs; Code 001

LUNCH & LEARN – Home Gardening Brown Bag Series: Growing Texas Superstar Plants onFri, Feb 14 from Noon-1pm at the County Extension Office. 1 CEU. Code 001. Bring your lunch and gain information on consumer horticulture. See the flyer for all classes offered in 2020!

EARTH-KIND® GARDEN & LANDSCAPE SERIES: Details on Flyer; Register online. Each class: 2 CEUs, Code 001

  • February 19 – TREES:  Selection, Planting, Maintenance of Shade Trees
  • March 18 – TOMATOES:  Bragging Right in Your Neighborhood
  • April 8 – TURF GRASS:  It’s More Than Just Mowing

February BCMG Monthly Meeting & Educational Seminar: Learn more all about the glories of Container Gardening with Succulents from our guest speaker MG Stephanie Jones on Thu, Feb 20, 1-3pm at 3355 Cherry Ridge, Suite 208, 78230. 1 CEU per hr presentation; Code 002

JMG National Leader Training & 20th Anniversary Celebration, February 24-26, 2020 in College Station. Details Online. 1 CEU per hr; Code 001

2020  TEXAS MASTER GARDENER ADVANCED COURSES offered at the TMGA website.  If you are interested in attending any courses, please email David Rodriguez, Extension Agent-Horticulture, Bexar County. BCMG CEU Code: 001.
Vegetables – Feb 19-21 hosted by Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Extension Center in Dallas
Plant Propagation – Apr 17-18 hosted by Dallas County in Dallas
Vegetables – May 5-7 hosted by Bexar County
Texas Superstars® – May 26-28 hosted by Bexar County
Rainwater Harvesting – Sep 24-26 hosted by Tarrant County in Fort Worth
Greenhouse Management – Oct 15-17 hosted by Tarrant County in Fort Worth

Registration for the 2020 Texas Master Gardener Conference will open first thing in the New Year. The early bird rate of $225.00 will run until January 20, 2020. Please take time now to preview the sessions, workshops and tours available by perusing the Conference Website. Print the agenda and circle or write down your first and second choices; that way you will be ready to go as soon as registration opens. Pay careful attention to the times because some events overlap, and this may cause you to miss out on something in which you really want to participate. 
While details are being finalized in the registration system, book your hotel room: Hilton is almost full and Courtyard Marriott is filling up fast! Check the Lodging tab for all hotel information.  For more information, email Conference Chair Louie McDaniel or call: (254) 405-4019. SEE YOU IN WACO!!

Great Gardening Events on the BCMG Calendar.  Bookmark the Calendar and visit it frequently!  Here is a sampling of what is coming up:

After San Antonio exceeded 300for300, its Tricentennial goal of creating three pollinator habitats for its 300th birthday in 2018, the Alamo City moved the pollinator gardening goalpost: 500 gardens by 2020. As of this week, our community has  pledged to create nearly 450 pollinator habitats. You can sign up for the pollinator habitat challenge and get plant lists and other resources, plus order pollinator habitat signs online at the Texas Butterfly Ranch.

Check Out the new and improved, mobile-friendly Garden Style San Antonio websiteeverything you need to create your own outdoor oasis.

Kids, Kows and More: Read all about the nearly 900 third graders who attended the two-day San Antonio agricultural expo in a recent Agrilife TODAY article HERE. Photo by Paul Schattenberg
Photo by Paul Schattenberg

Order your 1-year Texas Gardener Magazine at the discounted Master Gardeners’ price for a limited time only;  prices include Shipping and Taxes. Printed Magazine:  $18.71  or Online Version:  $14.96

For those of you who shop online, our BCMG Treasurer, Kathann ElAmin, has set up Bexar County Master Gardeners as a recipient of donations on Amazon Smile. If you have an amazon.com account and you log in instead at smile.amazon.com, you will be able to select Bexar County Master Gardeners as a charity.
The AmazonSmile Foundation contributes 0.5 percent of eligible purchases to the charity of your choice. Remember, you must be logged into smile.amazon.com—donations will not be applied to purchases made on the Amazon.com main site or mobile app.
This is a great way to get your holiday shopping done and help BCMG at the same time!