Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Growing Summit

Lions Club Gives Away 300 Trees at
Growing Summit
Phil Sutton handing out advice

First Growing Summit: A Huge Success!!!!
by  Doug Simpson, St Joe Valley Master Gardener
Where else could you experience 23 one-hour long classes taught by 25 different instructors all about one broad subject matter - GARDENING --- and, all in one day between 9am and 3pm, Perhaps most amazing, it was open to all interested gardeners free of charge.
Well, it all happened at IUSB on Saturday, April 21, 2012. The fi rst Growing Summit was truly a highly successful experience for more than 150 attendees. In addition to the classes there were more than 20 vendor stations relating to various aspects of gardening. They displayed a wide selection of timely subjects from Prairie Wind Farms to Green Drinks to Soil Boosters by the Fish Guys and much more. It appeared that most of the vendors, if not all, were in a happy mood when they left. As for the folks who attended this fi rst Growing Summit, it can be said that as a group they were excited, serious and eager to learn more about the subject of gardening. Many of them came with questions to be answered, and new ideas to be discovered as they eagerly anticipate the 2012 growing season. Incidentally, we were pleased to greet several members from the Michiana MG group from Elkhart County. Three SJVMG members presented over 10 of the 23 classes. Mitch Yaciw set the record that will be hard to beat. He taught four classes, each with a different subject relating to vegetable gardening. Vicky Rydzynski taught her popular class on Rain Barrels, and then led a new exciting offering of hers’ entitled Water Conservation. Monica Guillauds’ class was about Herb Gardens. The St. Joe County MG Class of 2010 was well represented: Besides Mitch and Monica, Sue Lowe taught a class on Native Plants, and Cara and Jim Lupa led two classes on Container Gardens, a subject that they have excelled in. And not to be left out, three members of the St. Joe County MG class of 2011 signed up to teach two more of the 23 classes. Dave and Carole Coffman taught a class on Shade Gardening, and Cyndi Kingma’s topic was Edible Flowers. Finally, in typical fashion, Sara and Mitch were already planning improvements and taking notes for a second in a series of Growing Summits in 2013. Our hats are off to the both of them for bringing this extremely well planned and executed event to our area gardeners.

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