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

Thursday, December 31, 2015

Greetings From TerraBirds

Ponderosa High School Greenhouses/Garden
Terra Birds Hone

Terra BIRDS wishes to thank and recognize the partners and supporters who help us in our mission.

Since 2012, Terra BIRDS grew from a part-time staff of two and just a few school garden projects, to a staff of five and a rotating crew of paid youth interns, with thousands of youth and community members in garden and stewardship projects all over Flagstaff.  The goal of these projects is to promote health and wellness, work and life skills, and hands-on education for young people; to create and sustain beautiful, ecologically healthy, accessible natural environments in our urban setting; and to collaborate in Northern Arizona's community-wide vision of sustainability (environmental, economic, and social).  Please read through the following Partners and Supporters list, and know that there is a story connected to each of these names.  Special acknowledgement goes out to the Coconino County Accommodation School District, providing Terra BIRDS with a home at Ponderosa High School.  Please seek information about these entities, support them, and know that they are partners in improving lives and making Flagstaff a better community.

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Seed Plant and Tool Catalogs 2016

Each year I update the list of Seed Plant & Tool Catalogs. I finished it during this slow week between holidays. The changes are minor. but it has become six pages long if you are interested in printing. Some of the changes are phone numbers, a few companies have dropped out, and two merged.  I am including a LINK with this article but after January it will appear on the blog under References and Resources in the right hand column called Pages . Please take a look at the list and send me any additions or changes you are aware of. I will revise by Jan. 15 but you can send new information at any time.

Here are two that I found interesting that you might not be aware of:
1.   Lily Garden - some of the most beautiful lilies I have seen are in their new catalog. I love lilies! They are so easy to care for. I grew some Asiatic lilies at Olivia Whtie Hospice in one of our sensory pots (aroma). They came back year after year and were so admired by residents and staff (smell and beauty). You can find them on the list under Bulb, Tuber and Rhizomes.
2.   Grononics - they have some of the most clever containers I have seen. They are a bit pricy, but you may get some ideas about making your own from just looking at them. They can be found under Tool Resources.

Don't forget you can ignore this list completely, save your own seeds, or come to the Grow Flagstaff Seed Library at the Coconino County Extension. At the seed library you can get free seeds and next year bring back some of your own. The best part is that each packet has the growers story and they are local. Thanks go to master gardener Jackee Alston and other volunteers for making this happen in Flagstaff. Check out several articles on the blog for more details, including a link to an article that appeared in the AZ Daily Sun. If you are interested in helping you can volunteer each month (4th Thur.) beginning in January. At the extension from 10am-2pm you can help stuff seed packets.

Email me with any questions or comments (

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Volunteering Saguaro National Park

Subject: Saguaro NP events!

From Dorothy Lamm, Native Plant Society
I have a couple events happening at Saguaro National Park this spring that I thought you all would be interested in:  
January 16, from 10am-1pm we will be giving away our mule manure to anyone who would like it for their gardens! Help us keep this manure out of landfills and reduce our environmental footprint. Contact Bella Furr for more information at (Flyer attached). 
We are partnering up with REI to host three saguaro surveys that will be open to everyone! There will be 15-20 slots for each survey and the surveys will be on February 6(east district), March 19(west district), and April 16(west district). Open to anyone with any hiking experience and a love for saguaros and the sonoran desert. Please RSVP either on the REI website when the schedule is posted or sending an email to me, 
Looking forward to working with your organization and all of the lovely native plant enthusiasts. 
Have a festive week!
Carolyn Harper 
Next Generation Ranger
Saguaro National Park 
3693 S. Old Spanish Trail 
Tucson, AZ 85730

Monday, December 14, 2015

AZ Native Plant Society Planning Meeting

Greetings, All on this lovely, snowy day!!
Please join us for the first AZNPS (Flagstaff Chapter) get-together and planning meeting of 2016!!
Which speakers would you like to hear at our monthly meetings?
Where would you like to go on our monthly hikes?
The planning group will meet Tuesday, January 5, 2016 at 6:30pm. Please join us.
Contact Sue Holiday at for all the details, including the location. 

Posted for the
Planning Group
by D. Lamm

Sunday, December 13, 2015

CMGA Officers for 2016

The annual election of officers was presided over by Cry Wells at the November 7th meeting. She presented a slate of officers that was developed in committee. There were no new additions to the slate and those elected include:

Jim Mast, President
Ed Skiba, Vice President
Sue Madden, Treasurer
Jackie Clark , Secretary

Committee chairs will be surveyed in December to see who needs to be replaced.

What is Healthy Soil?

Want to test your knowledge about soils? Check out this online site that Joe Harte sent.