Roses are red, violets are blue, we have plants, how about you?
The Master Gardener Plant Sale is next weekend, Saturday, May 15 at the Clinton County Fairgrounds and I hope to see all of you! I realize I have already mentioned this event in an earlier column, but I wanted to acknowledge the Master Gardeners and all their efforts for this sale and what the proceeds of this event go for.
First off, the Clinton County Master Gardeners are OSU Extension volunteers that have gone through many hours of training and learning about many horticulturally related topics. In return, they provide literally hundreds of hours each year of volunteer service and education back to the Clinton County Community through several community activities.
One on the activities I have always enjoyed has been the involvement with the Clinton County Habitat for Humanity. Clinton County Master Gardeners have been involved with this organization for more than 11 years, providing families receiving these homes assistance with designing their landscape and helping organize a workday to install plants the Master Gardeners have purchased for these families.
In addition to helping these families design and plant their landscapes, they provide educational and plant management assistance to these new homeowners so they may successfully care for their plants on their property.
Another program is the Community Pollinator educational and awareness event. This project is usually oriented to youth of the county and is designed to educate and raise awareness of the need for pollinators. Events associated with this program are generally offered in June of each year during the National Pollinator week.
The Master Gardeners provide assistance and education to families involved in a WIC gardening program through the Clinton County Health Department. They have also provided assistance and education for youth involved in a county juvenile youth garden program. Master Gardener volunteers help youth learn the importance of growing their own food through gardens.
Over the years, Master Gardeners have been involved in other community garden programs and have provided many educational programs to the public through several library educational programs.
I could go on and on to the important work that the Clinton County Master Gardeners provide through their many programs and projects. Each year is different as the projects and educational programs change sometimes as quickly as the seasons.
At the end of each year, I am always proud of the Master Gardener volunteers in all that they provide to our community through educational programs and projects.
So, I hope you can find time to come out to the Clinton County Fairgrounds Sheep Barn and support the Clinton County Master Gardener plant sale 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, May 15. The selection will hopefully satisfy your plant appetite as there will be a wide variety of vegetables, herbs, annuals, and perennials.
Here is a sample:
• Full-size tomatoes: Beefmaster, Better Boy, Brandywine, Early Girl, Lemon Boy, La Roma, German Johnson and more.
• Cherry tomatoes: sweet 100, Juliet grape, and yellow canary and yellow pear.
• Peppers: red beauty, California wonder, snackabelle red, sweet banana, and jalapeno.
• We will also have eggplant, cabbage, broccoli, cucumber, squash, zucchini, along with cantaloupe, honey dew and watermelon.
• For the happy cooks, checkout the selection of herbs that will include basil (Sweet Dani Lemon and Sweet Italian), cilantro, dill, Italian parsley, lavender, garden mint, oregano, rosemary, salvia green sage, tarragon, and thyme (Italian and Lemon).
• There will be lot of variety within the annuals which will include celosia, coleus, dianthus, impatiens, marigold, wave petunia, geranium, begonia and more.
• Finally, we have selected perennials with the pollinator in mind. Look for aster, coreopsis, Buddleia (butterfly bush), echinacea, gaillardia (blanket flower), Shasta daisy, monarda (bee balm), rudbeckia and sedum.
Come plant-hungry, and COVID-safe, as facemasks will be required. See you then!
Tony Nye is the state coordinator for the Ohio State University Extension Small Farm Program and has been an OSU Extension Educator for agriculture and natural resources for over 30 years, currently serving Clinton County and the Miami Valley EERA.