Master gardener plant sale, soil testing

Master gardener plant sale, soil testing

One of the most anticipated gardening events of the year is this weekend. Ann Bares, master gardener, and one of the event coordinators, says, “Get there early if there are unique plants you are looking for.”

Master gardeners will be at the event Saturday, March 31, from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. staffing a booth just waiting to answer your questions. Jackie Steen is the current president. She and lots of other volunteer members will have information on lawns, citrus, trees, plants and vegetables. There are about 80 certified master gardeners in our community. They average more than 5,000 volunteer hours each year. It takes 50 hours of volunteer work to certify as a master gardener after hours of class work, according to Peggy Coleman at the Texas AgriLife Extension Agency.

“Seminars will be held on the hour, from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m. All six seminars are just what you may want to know before you plant your new plants from our big sale,” said Ann Bares. There are more plants than ever this year, all specifically for Southeast Texas climate. You will find a wonderful variety of shrubs, vines, bedding plants, roses and vegetables.

A great addition is Norman Alston, who will be on hand to test the pH level of your soil. Alston can also advise you on what you need to do to make your soil perfect for your plants to be happy. Bring soil in a 1/2 pint jar or in a Ziploc bag.

According to Bares, there are more than 36 vendors at this year’s plant sale, in addition to a fabulous variety of plants for sale. Bares said, “Many of the vendors are new ones, coming from Conroe, Magnolia, Jasper, Vinton and many other locations in Southeast Texas. Our food booth will have our popular links, plus home-baked good, nachos and drinks. The master gardener volunteers will have an area called Garage Sale and Kid’s Korner with games and face painting and seed planting.”

Remember that the plant sale boasts free parking, free admission and help to load up your plants and get them to the car. And a holding area will keep an eye your plants while you shop the 36 vendors and wait for your number to be called for door prizes. Door prizes from the booths will be given away all day.

Bares said, “We look forward to seeing all of our Southeast Texas friends at the Jefferson County Jack Brooks Regional Airport, Highway 69 S.” Look for the fun at Hanger No. 4 on March 31 from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Call Peggy Coleman of the Jefferson County Office of Texas AgriLife Extension Service if you have any questions about the Master Gardener Plant Sale or about becoming a master gardener yourself at (409) 835-8461.

Joette is an avid gardener and prides  herself on staying up-to-date on the latest gardening activities and tips. To share your gardening news with Joette, call (409) 832-1400 or fax her at (409) 832-6222. Her e-mail is joreger [at] msn [dot] com.