Saturday, August 3, 2013

Come see us at the 2013 Putnam County Fair

The weather is wonderful and the 2013 fair is underway!  Stop by and see our displays.  Bring your family by for some fun.  We're potting plants in the children's potting shed and making bird feeders at the picnic table.  Come by and enjoy the activities, scenery,  and some good old fashion conversation!  

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Master Gardeners offer Summer Classes


Are you a new gardener with more questions than answers?  Are you an experienced gardener recently moving to Putnam County, but having difficulty with your gardens?  Maybe you are an avid gardener who enjoys taking classes and learning new things.  If any of these define you, Master Gardeners invite you to sign up for summer gardening classes to improve your gardening skills.

Classes will be taught either at the (UT Extension Bldg) on South Walnut or on the fairgrounds in the Master Gardener’s Building.  A variety of classes are scheduled for summer, with additional classes planned for the fall.  Several Master Gardeners will teach the classes and share their knowledge in an informative yet fun atmosphere.

The following classes are currently scheduled:


“Freezing Food and Preserving Pickles / Relishes” will be taught July 13th, Saturday morning 9 – 11:30 a.m.  Learn to preserve your garden produce for gifts or later use.  Class cost $10 per person with a book provided for each.

“Establishing and Caring for a Fescue Lawn” will be taught July 18th, Thursday evening 6 – 8:00 p.m.  Bring a sack dinner and learn some simple tips to improving your lawn.

“Making Jams and Jellies” will be taught July 27th, Saturday morning 9 – 11:00 a.m.  Learn to preserve your garden fruits for gifts or later use.  Class cost $10 per person with a book provided.

“Gardener’s Annual Maintenance Calendar & Tips” will be taught September 19th, 6 – 7:30 p.m.  Bring a sack dinner and learn what to do the rest of the year in your gardens.


To enroll in classes, call UT Extension at 526-4561.  Unless otherwise noted, classes cost $10 per person, $16 for a couple, or $5 each for groups of 3 or more.  Classes are limited to 25 people, so call early to reserve your spot.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Class Schedule!

Master Gardeners offer Summer Classes


Are you a new gardener with more questions than answers?  Are you an experienced gardener recently moving to Putnam County, but having difficulty with your gardens?  Maybe you are an avid gardener who enjoys taking classes and learning new things.  If any of these define you, Master Gardeners invite you to sign up for summer gardening classes to improve your gardening skills.

Classes will be taught either at the (UT Extension Bldg) on South Walnut or on the fairgrounds in the Master Gardener’s Building.  A variety of classes are scheduled for summer, with additional classes planned for the fall.  Several Master Gardeners will teach the classes and share their knowledge in an informative yet fun atmosphere.

The following classes are currently scheduled:

“Flower Gardening 101” will be taught June 20th, Thursday evening 6 – 7:30 p.m.  This class is designed for the person who is new to gardening or new to our area.  Bring a sack dinner and enjoy a fun class.

“Making a Garden Trellis” will be taught on June 22nd, Saturday 9 – 12:00.  The class is $10 plus the cost of a supply list.  Each person who purchases a “supply list” will leave with a trellis.  Couples may pay $10 and make one trellis if desired.

“Food Preservation by Hot Water Bath & Pressure Canning” will be taught June 29th, Saturday morning, 9 – 11:00 a.m.  Class cost $10 per person with a book provided for each.

“Making Pickles and Relishes” will be taught July 13th, Saturday morning 9 – 11:00 a.m.  Learn to preserve your garden produce for gifts or later use.  Class cost $10 per person with a book provided for each.

“Establishing and Caring for a Fescue Lawn” will be taught July 18th, Thursday evening 6 – 8:00 p.m.  Bring a sack dinner and learn some simple tips to improving your lawn.

“Gardener’s Annual Maintenance Calendar & Tips” will be taught September 19th, 6 – 7:30 p.m.  Bring a sack dinner and learn what to do the rest of the year in your gardens.


To enroll in classes, call UT Extension at 526-4561.  Unless otherwise noted, classes cost $10 per person, $16 for a couple, or $5 each for groups of 3 or more.  Classes are limited to 25 people, so call early to reserve your spot.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

New Garden at the Library: Master Gardeners and Putnam County Library

New Garden at the Library: 
Master Gardeners and Putnam County Library
Putnam County Master Gardeners have recently completed the installation of brand new gardens at the Putnam County Library.  The staff at the library called on the help of Master Gardeners to design and install plantings and hard-scape in a dreary, ignored corner of the library's front lawn.  The grass was dying and bushes there were withering away.  With the dry shade conditions and poor soil, Master Gardeners started with a soil test, and a good design.  Soil was amended according to the recommendations of the soil test, and the design was implemented with a path and plants that will tolerate both partial shade and dry conditions. 
The Herald-Citizen recently featured a story on the gardens.  Read more: Herald Citizen - Master Gardeners Library celebrate completion of gardens

To celebrate the completion of the gardens, the library and Master Gardeners will be hosting a Garden Party Open House on Saturday, June 8th at 10:00 till noon.  Refreshments will be served and it is open to the public.  Come see the new gardens and hear about how it came to be.  Learn more about the library's summer reading programs and how you can achieve such a garden in your own back yard.  Talk to Master Gardeners and learn more about our programs.

Picture by Serina Wells


Following Pictures courtesy of Herald-Citizen
Inline image 1
Two-year-old Harper Wells helps her mother, Serina, a member of the Putnam County Master Gardeners, tend to the gardens at the Putnam County Library. Ty Kernea | Herald-Citizen
Read more: Herald Citizen - Master Gardeners Library celebrate completion of gardens

Inline image 2
Library staff members and Putnam County Master Gardeners gathered to show off the completed gardens at the library. Pictured kneeling, from left, are Chris Phillips, front desk clerk at the library; Stacie Johnson, assistant director; two-year-old Harper Wells and Master Gardeners Kathy Johnson and Serina Wells; and in back, Terry Robinson, Master Gardener; Amanda Yother, children's services coordinator; Master Gardeners C.B. Coburn, Fran Hutchinson, Glennys Ulschak and Anita McCawley and Friends of the Library member Joanne White. Ty Kernea | Herald-Citizen


Pictures courtesy of Herald-Citizen

Saturday, April 13, 2013

2013 Plant Sale

WHO:  Putnam County Master Gardeners
 
WHAT:  The 2nd Annual Putnam County Master Gardener Plant Sale is right around the corner.
 
WHEN:  Saturday, April 27th between 8am and 3pm we will be selling our Master Gardener home grown and approved quality plants at fair prices to our community.  Come early for the best selection!
 
WHERE:  Putnam County Fairgrounds, follow the signs to the Greenhouse
 
PLANTS AVAILABLE:  Perennials, Annuals, Flowering Shrubs, Vegetables & Herbs, Native Plants, Hanging Baskets

WHYWe raise most of these plants ourselves, from seed. We grow strong, healthy plants.
Plant varieties are chosen by expert local gardeners to match our location. Mass growers supplying the large chain stores just can’t do that. That let’s us feature more heirloom and hard-to-find selections. (We will also have several tried-and-true standards for gardeners who prefer them.) Our prices are very competitive. We get a modest return for our plant-growing efforts, you get great deals. The money you spend supports worthy projects.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Tomatoes!


Tomatoes come in many varieties based on what you intend to use the tomato for and your expectations of those tomatoes.  Sit down at the kitchen table and make a list of the uses you will have for your tomato across the top of the page.  Below each, list the expectations (characteristics) for that tomato use.  Then you can start investigating tomatoes that meet those uses and characteristics.
 
Here are some terms you will need to know.  Indeterminate tomatoes will continue to grow, and produce, throughout the season.  Determinate tomatoes will grow to a certain size and stop growing.  Most of the tomato fruit will mature at the same time on the determinate tomato vine (great for canning purposes). 
 
Heirloom tomatoes are open-pollinated tomatoes introduced many generations ago.  Their characteristics had merits that endeared them to some people, thus, the seed were passed down to others.  Hybrids are the results of artificial pollination of one variety with another variety.  In general, heirloom tomatoes taste better but are more susceptible to diseases than hybrids.  Hybrids are more productive and usually bare earlier than heirlooms.  Hybrids will usually have the “F1” designated on the tag or seed pack.
 
Disease resistance is often displayed after the tomato name on the tag or on a seed pack.  V refers to Verticillium wilt resistance.  FF = Fusarium diseases races 1 and 2 resistance.  N = root knot nematode resistance. T = Resistant to tobacco mosaic virus.  A = Alternaria stem canker resistance.  ST = Stemphylium Gray Leaf Spot.  TSWV = Tomato Spotted Wilt Virus.  In middle Tennessee we are more concerned with VFNT.
 
A great web site to help in choosing tomatoes is http://www.totallytomato.com/ .  Under the “Tomato Seeds” tab are sub-categories that will narrow your search somewhat.  Here is what we do:
 
For early table tomatoes we prefer Early Girl Hybrid (VFF). Very taste. Firm medium size tomato.
 
Other table tomatoes we usually select from the following heirlooms:
 
Aunt Ruby’s German Green Tomato.  Delicious sweet flavor. Tomato turns a lighter color green when ripe.  Meaty flesh is green blushed with pink.
 
Box Car Willie Tomato is a all purpose heirloom with an unsurpassed flavor.  Heavy producer throughout the season.  Meaty fruit that is generally crack-free.  Highly disease resistant.
 
Cherokee Purple Tomato that is an ugly tomato, but oh what a taste!  Reliable producer even during dry summers.  Generally disease resistant.
 
Mortgage Lifter Tomato (some time called Radiator Charlie) has a good yield even in dry summers.  Very meaty and has few seed.  Flavor is mild, delectable, and sweet.  Good canner and juicer.
 
We also have a couple Cherry Tomatoes to use in salads and because they are favorites with kids.  Plants are hard to find.  Thus, we save seed.  “Totally Tomatoes” has a wide selection you can read and choose the variety that suits you.  We had a bad experience with Super Sweet 110 (99% cracked). 
 
Big Box Stores will have a variety of tomato plants to select from.  Be careful, however, you never know if the tag in the container is in the original.  Everybody pulls the tag out to read, and hopefully put them back in the container they pulled it out of.  Multiply that by hundreds that “hope” they put it back in the right container.  Putnam County Master Gardeners will have a plant sale the last weekend in April.  There will be a wide selection of tomato plants available.
 
When planting your tomato, mix in a liberal quantity of a good quality compost and ½ teaspoon Miracle Grow or other balanced fertilizer.  If you over fertilize you get a lot of vine and no tomatoes.  When the tomatoes bloom and forms small tomatoes feed the plants with additional fertilizer.  If you are a smoker, wear gloves when handling tomato and pepper plants.  If you water tomatoes, reduce water as the fruits get about half grown.  They will have better taste.  Next year, plant tomatoes in a location where you had not tomatoes, pepper, or potatoes.
 
C. B. Coburn, Putnam County Master Gardener

Monday, March 11, 2013

Busy Weeks Ahead!

Hello Friends!  

As time allows, please check the calendar for events over the next couple of weeks.  We have lots of opportunities to get involved in the days/weeks ahead! 

Project leaders, please continue to let us know about upcoming work days as soon as possible.  Serina will be adding those dates to the calendar as they are provided.

-Adam

Recent photo from the Putnam County Library garden installation

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Upper Cumberland Home and Garden Show

Interns and Master Gardeners:
 
Just a reminder that the Upper Cumberland Home & Garden Show is just around the corner.  This event takes place at Hyder Burks on March 1, 2 and 3. The hours are Friday 4-8 PM, Saturday 9-8 PM, and Sunday 12-4 PM. 
 
The focal point of our booth will be the potting shed used in Mr. McGregor's garden from last year's Putnam County Fair.  Our display will incorporate items typically found in or around a potting shed with colorful garden accessories and tools to hopefully inspire spring planting enthusiasm.  We will be selling gloves, cookbooks, and plant markers.  We will also be advertising the plant sale and passing out coupons for that event.
 
I hope many of you will be able to help with the Home & Garden Show.  We will have two-hour shifts with three people working each shift -- one of which will be a Master Gardener to help with the questions.  This is a fun and easy way to earn hours, inside, with no manual labor involved!!
 
Sign-up sheets will be available at your next meeting (11th for interns; 18th for Master Gardeners).
 
If you have any questions or want to sign up early, please email or call
 
Thinking Spring -
 
Carol Ludgate

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Plant Sale Seeding Begins!

The Spring Plant Sale 1st seeding event will be February 23, 2013 1:00 p.m. at the UT Extension Conference Room.  The seeding instructional will begin promptly at 1:00.  This is a hands-on seeding of vegetable and annual annual seeds for our sale.  Everyone is invited for an afternoon of fun and sharing.  Contact Jan Tollett with questions at jantollett@gomail.com.  Hope to see you there!  We're Growing!

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Announcements

I'd like to start by offering a warm welcome to our 2013 Intern Class which is now underway!  We are excited to have so many new faces in the class.   
 
The last few days have brought us warm temperatures with severe weather, followed by immediately by cold temperatures and snow.  Although the weather may be slightly unpredictable at the moment, our schedule of events doesn't have to be.  I am starting to receive dates for various items in the months to come.  Please check out the calendar and see how you can get involved.  Also, if you have a project work date coming up, please be sure to email me and let me know so I can get the event added to the calendar as early as possible. 
 
While you are here, take a look around.  Several pages have been updated, and others will continue to be updated as new events unfold, and classes are scheduled.  If you have pictures you'd like to see added to the photo gallery, please email me with the photos attached. 
 
Last, but by no means least, the Third Annual PCMG Winter Party on February 16th at 5:30pm!
 
Betsy and Jay have graciously agreed to host us once again for our Winter Party!  Please RSVP to Mary as soon as possible if you plan to attend.  Mary will ensure we have a well rounded menu.  There is no shortage of great cooks in this group, so this is definitely an event to attend! 
 
 
-Adam 

Thursday, January 17, 2013

It's hard to believe that we are already half way through January!  The meeting this past Monday was a great way to start the year.  Plans for 2013 are taking shape quickly.  If you are a project manager and have a work date coming up, please make sure to let Adam know so it can be added to the website calendar, as well as any content you may have to add to the site.  Stay tuned for updates!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Happy New Year

Happy New Year!

2013 has begun, and Master Gardeners have already started preparing plants for the much anticipated Plant Sale.  While the colder weather and rain has kept many of us indoors during the last few days, the PCMG greenhouse has sheltered our seedlings as they have emerged from the soil.  Make sure to check back with us as 2013 events unfold and the calendars on the site are updated.  May your flowers be beautiful and your gardens be bountiful in 2013!