In 2016, the Polk County Master Gardeners volunteered:
- 31 hours in youth education
- 46 hours in community education
- 803 hours in support service
The major accomplishments in 2016 was MGV’s planted and maintained two raised beds at Sophie’s manor, an assisted living home in Centuria. they grew pumpkins, squash, carrots, tomatoes, and green beans. Residents were encouraged to come to the garden and help and engage with the MGV’s; continuing with the “Are you smarter than a Master Gardener” at the Polk County Fair; Providing monthly horticulture education at the local libraries; and they continued with growing their education and answering of questions that came through the Polk County UW-Extension office. The newest project was the gardening class for Middle schoolers at Unity Middle school. The class designed and then planted one of 10 raised beds of vegetables to be used for consumption in the school lunchroom.
As for the Polk County Master Gardeners part – we have 10 monthly meetings which are held the 2nd Monday of each month, usually at the Polk County Justice Center. Check with the local media for exact dates and meeting locations. Meetings begin at 6:00pm and guest speakers begin at 7:00pm. Contact Sally or Jackie at 715-268-6130 for more information.
November is the annual meeting for election of officers and recapping the past year. This year the focus continued on vegetables as well as flowers, trees and shrubs. Topics covered by speakers included identifying and controlling weeds using natural methods as much as possible; dealing with problem wildlife; and being successful with growing vegetables, fruits and fruit trees. A local organic vegetable gardener shares some of his methods at one of our meetings.