Coconino Master Gardener Association

Currently, warblers of several species are migrating through Flagstaff towards Canada and beyond. The Yellow Warblers, like this little guy are often an exception. They frequently choose to remain in Flagstaff throughout the summer. All of the warblers are busily searching the innermost branches of shrubs and trees for insects.
Photo by Cindy Murray.

Welcome to the Coconino County Master Gardeners' Association Blog. The mission of the Coconino Master Gardener Program is to support the University of Arizona by providing researched-based information on environmentally responsible gardening and landscaping to the public. The program creates a corps of well-informed volunteers, and delivers quality horticultural education programs adapted to our regional high elevation environment. The mission of the association is to provide support for those volunteers and Master Gardener graduates, continuing education, and opportunities to participate in community programs that increase the visibility and participation in the Master Gardener Program.
On this site you will find gardening news, links, a calendar for local events, volunteer opportunities, book reviews, agenda/minutes for our association monthly meetings, and association documents and contacts.
The Coconino County Master Gardener Association was founded in 2009 by a small group of master gardeners with the help of Hattie Braun the Director of the MG Program. After several small meetings it was opened to all master gardeners on May 21st, 2009. Meetings are held monthly on the 2rd Thursday of each month from 6:30pm - 8:30pm. We meet at the Shepherd of the Hills Lutheran Church (1601 N. San Francisco). The agenda usually includes continuing education and a short business meeting. Watch this blog for the agenda and minutes for all meetings. Contacts for the association (officers and committee chairs) are listed at the bottom of this blog.

Reporting Master Gardener Hours

All master gardener trainees and certified master gardeners need to report their hours.
Beginning in 2010 certified master gardeners need to have 6 Education hours and 12 Volunteer hours in order to maintain certification.The on line reporting system allows you to report Education or Volunteer hours.
If you have any questions or concerns about the new reporting system, please contact Crys Wells or Hattie Braun. Their contacts are listed at the bottom of the blog under
Link to reporting

Ideas for hours------
--Attend monthly meetings
--Work on an association committee
--Work at an informational booth for the Master Gardeners
--Be a speaker about gardening topics at a variety of venues

--Host a garden tour
--Work at the home show
--Work at a MG site (Olivia White Hospice, the Arboretum, Riordan Mansion, or school gardens (many others)). Check out the Assoc. Doc. & Forms under Volunteer Sites.
--Work in the Extension office
--Write an article for the newspaper column -Gardening Excetera
-Volunteer with the Seed Library
Be creative! There are many ways to fulfill your hours. Just remember for volunteering it needs to be a non-profit endeavor or an approved for profit site.

Change in Contact Information

Have you moved or changed your e-mail address, but would still like to be contacted about high elevation gardening information from the Extension? The Coconino County Extension Master Gardener Program has a site that will let you change your information on-line.

Click here to change your contact information!

Event Calendar

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Children's Garden May Events

May 14th 4:30 p.m. Children's Garden Community Gardening Day


Join us for our spring gardening event May 14th 4:30 p.m. at
Children's Garden of Flagstaff

We will be giving the Children's Garden some TLC after a long winter, and in preparation for our upcoming memorial plaque dedication on the 19th.

Bring gloves, shovels, trowels, and get ready to get dirty!
This is a fun community event open to all ages.

May 19th 11 a.m.   Memorial Plaque Dedication

Join us on Sunday, May 19th at 11 a.m. for the 2019 Memorial Plaque Dedication.  This is a beautiful event to celebrate and remember our children.

There will be music, balloon twisting, face painting, wild flower seeds to spread, and a short ceremony to dedicate the new plaques and our new sculpture.

We encourage you to invite friends and family for this beautiful gathering.  Many pack a picnic lunch and enjoy the garden and park afterwards.

This year we also welcome you to bring a daylily to plant in the garden. 

Monday, May 13, 2019

East Valley Baptist Church Event & Volunteering

Free Gardening Open House for the community, Saturday, May 18  from 9-11 am at East Valley Baptist Church 10655 N. US Hwy 89 Flagstaff.
the other information I believe you post on the MG web page--See a demonstration garden, free seeds, compost, tomato plants, and seminars:  "Beginning Your garden," and "Soil-your garden's
success starts here."  We'll be meeting every other Saturday during the summer for more seminars, and have tables out for you to share excess produce, tools, materials, ideas, tips and
whatever else might be helpful.  sponsored by the East Valley Gardening Network.

We are seeking MGs to help answer questions from the public, and teach seminars on "Beginning Your Garden," and "Soil-your garden's success starts here," on Saturday, May 18 at our Garden
Open House for our community.  We will be offering more seminars every other Saturday through out the summer. For more information contact Daryl Bennett at 928-527-8977 or

Daryl Bennett

Saturday, May 4, 2019

MNA Spring Garden Tours and Events

Early Season Seedling Swap and Sale at MNA
Calling all Gardening Ninjas! Get a head start on the growing season with Flagstaff's first early season Seedling Swap and Sale at MNA. Bring your extra seed starts to swap or load up on hardy starts grown by Flagstaff farmers. This event will take place from 10am-1pm at the Colton Community Garden at MNA. FREE workshop offered 10am-1pm on self-wicking bed construction. 
Direction from downtown Flagstaff: take 180 North towards MNA. Turn right on Winding Brooke Lane. Park at the "T" in front of Newberry Cabin. Garden just behind and to your left. 
Sponsored by Flagstaff Foodlink, MNA and U of A Cooperative Extension Office.
MNA Horticulture Tours led by Jan Busco
Tours start at 10 am on select Saturday mornings and are limited in size. Tours include an optional 45 minute educational hands-on volunteer activity. Advance tickets can be purchased at
Jan Busco has worked with native plants for more than three decades and is the curator of MNA’s gardens and grounds. She has written three books on western native plants; Native Plants for High-Elevation Western Gardens (Fulcrum Press 2010, 2004), First Garden: How to get Started in Southwestern Gardening (Cool Springs Press 2005) and First Garden:  How to get Started in California Gardening.  
May 4. Horticulture Tour: Early bloomers & cool season grasses
 Learn about early blooming plants and cool season grasses on this guided tour with MNA Horticulturist Jan Busco. Be ready to walk and spend time outside in the MNA research campus open space and around Coyote Springs. A seedling and plant sale follows. Feel free to bring a picnic lunch.
June 1  Golightly courtyard, Exhibits building
Living Exhibitions like the Life Zones in the Golightly Courtyard take a special kind of care and curation. Learn about the plants featured in and around the museum exhibits building, how they are selected, planted and cared for and their place in the natural landscape. After the tour, participants are invited to stay for a brief 45 minute volunteer activity. Feel free to bring lunch for a picnic.

Agave Marie Botanicals Workshops

Happy Spring!
I am sharing the details of three summer gardening workshops (link here) hosted by my company, Agave Maria Botanicals in the hopes you can pass this information along to your plant and garden networks.
Our mission is to share our knowledge and passion for plants, gardening, herbalism and floral design to inspire people to grow their own gardens and create with all that springs forth from those seeds.

We are partnering with some of the most talented plantswomen in our region in the realms of gardening, herbal medicine and floral design. We invite you to attend  one of our magical, memorable workshops and healing retreats in the garden at Orchard Canyon on Oak Creek in Sedona, AZ. These unique weekend experiences will enliven your spirit and connect you more deeply with the plant world.  Treat yourself to an experience that will only grow and blossom in your life!

We are offering a $25 discount on our first workshop, Herbal Gifts from the Garden, with the promo code MAYDAY! at checkout. This offer is good through May 15th.

Thank you for your interest and for helping us spread the word!
All the best,
Kate Watters

Friday, May 3, 2019

Willow Bend Events

 April is AZ Water Awareness Month
April is Arizona’s Water Awareness Month!  The City of Flagstaff Water Conservation Program is organizing free events throughout the entire month of April to engage, educate, and inspire community members to be more water conscious. Find a list of programs and activities on the City's website.
And, take the Mayoral's Pledge and help get Flagstaff on the map for water conservation!
Special: Earth Day Recycling Center Tour
Join us for an Earth Day recycling center tour on Friday, April 19th at 1pm. Tour is on a first come first serve basis with limited spots. Groups with over 10 participants must schedule a private tour (contact or call 928-779 1745).

Meet at the Materials Recovery Facility (1800 E. Butler Ave). Learn what can and what can't be recycled in Flagstaff and follow materials from the tipping floor, through the conveyor belt and into the baler. Tour is free and open to the public. More information on our website.

Thursday, April 25, 2019

CMGA May 2019 Meeting Agenda

Coconino Master Gardener Meeting Agenda
Thursday, May 9, 2018 at 6:30pm
Shepherd of the Hills Lutheran Church—Benson Hall
1601 N. San Francisco, Flagstaff, AZ 86001

6:30-6:35pm    Welcome-Sue Madden, President   
6:35-6:40pm    Introduction of Speakers—Gilli Thomas
6:40-7:45pm    Education:  Robyn/Violas/Using and Growing Annuals        
(15 minute break with refreshments)
7:45-8:00pm      Raffle Prize Drawing – $1 each or 6 for $5 - Must be present to win
8:00-8:25pm    Business Meeting
Art-full Summer Garden Tours/July 20—Questions?  Ask Colleen Tucker at (928) 853-0315 or 
Jennifer Quarterman at (720) 560-7575.  Six gardens have been selected. Volunteer sign-up 
sheets available at this meeting, 3 volunteers are still needed for the afternoon.
Gilli Thomas—Water Conservation for the City of Flagstaff.  Gilli will continue to attend as the CMGA
 presence with other groups that have a stake in this issue.
MG Coordinator Happenings—Hattie Braun
  • Summer Plant Sale June 15, 2019.  Vendors and plant sellers have been signing up.
  • Bus Stop Garden MG/Volunteer needed.
  • Free Gardening Open House, May 18, 9-11am at the East Valley Baptist Church, 
    10655 North Hwy 89.  4 Volunteers needed.
  • Master Gardener Hotline will begin when staff and volunteers are available.  
    Help Desk Coordinator and other volunteers needed.

Tomato Fest at Viola's this Saturday

Tomato Fest is a celebration of the start of veggie season. We will have over 75 different varieties of tomatoes and lots of veggies to pick. We have a great line up of classes for the day.

Schedule for Tomato Fest Classes
10:00 From The Garden To The Kitchen
By: Frank Branham previous owner of The Cottage Place
You grew it, now what? The previous owner of the Cottage Place Frank Branham, is going to share his techniques on how to prepare your cold hardy vegetables. You don’t get someone with this much experience to often. This will be a must see.

11:00 Growing Native Flowers And Shrubs For Pollinators By: Judy Springer
Judy is a plant ecologist at the Ecological Restoration Institute at NAU. She has graced us with many really great talks.This one will be no different. She will enlighten us on which native shrubs and flowers are great pollinators. This is a class for new and experiencedgardeners wanting to learn more about our Flagstaff Natives.

12:00 Beginning Gardening
By: Robyn Walters co-owner of Viola’s
Robyn will help you make gardening fun and easy in Flagstaff. This class is for people new to gardening in Flagstaff. Whether it’s in the ground or in a pot she will have great tips and tricks. If she can do it so can you!

1:00 Organic Pest Control For The Garden
By: Art Escobedo Co-Owner Of Viola’s
Why not use nature to help control the pests in your garden? Art’s many years experience with Viola’s and gardening has built his knowledge on pest control. He will share how simple early pest treatments can make a world of difference in the garden. A great class for people new to Flagstaff, as well as new and experienced gardeners.

2:00 Season Extending By: Frank Branham previous owner of the Cottage Place Frank used to grow veggies for the Cottage Place. He will show you how to get the most out of a Flagstaff gardening season. Flagstaff’s short gardening season can be tricky. Sometimes if you don’t extend the season you can miss out on getting a decent harvest. Frank will show you a couple of tips on how to extend the season so you get the most out of your garden.

Thursday, April 18, 2019

Willow Bend Garden Accomplishments for 2018 and plans for 2019

If you are interested in where your money went last year (2018 CMGA Annual Garden Grants) or would like to volunteer this year I am attaching a link for you to read Susan Lamb's report.
Here is the LINK