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

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

CMGA March Meeting Agenda

Coconino Master Gardener Meeting Agenda
Thursday, March 8, 2018 at 6:30pm
Shepherd of the Hills Lutheran Church—Benson Hall
1601 N. San Francisco, Flagstaff, AZ 86001

6:30-6:50pm       Welcome-Sherline Alexander   
6:50-6:55pm       Introduction of Speakers—Gilli Thomas
6:55-7:45pm       Education:  Jackee Alston, Season Extenders
(15 minute break with refreshments)

8:00-8:25pm       Business Meeting—Sherline Alexander
Need a volunteer for fundraising chair/committee, this includes the monthly raffle.
Committee signups:  Spring seminar committee, Earth Day sign ups and Fall 2018 conference committee
MG Coordinator Happenings—Hattie Braun
          2018 Home and Garden show at the NAU Field House. 
          Fall into Gardening 2018
          MG Class in Flagstaff 2/6-5/8 9a-12:30p, Coconino Public Health Bldg.
          Earth Day—April 21 at Bushmaster Park, 11a-2p
          Beginning Gardener Talks
          Flagstaff Monthly Garden Tours
                                Financial Report—Molly Larsen                               
Committee Progress Reports:
MG Projects—Jackee Alston, Grant applications/Seed Library
Gardening Workshop – Sherline Alexander
Summer Garden Sale – Judy Springer                    
Continuing Education—Gilli Thomas
        April 12 Carol Chicci - Selecting and Growing Roses in Flagstaff
        May 10 Tom Mast – Growing Tomatoes in Flagstaff
Social – Liz George                         
Volunteer Support—Tim Ellsworth-Bowers /Crys Wells
                                    Historian—Tammy Valdovino

8:25-8:30              Gardening Questions?

Next meeting:  April 12 –Roses for Flagstaff/Carol Chicci

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Milkweed for Monarchs

Coconino Master Gardeners:

The AZ Milkweeds for Monarchs team is reaching out again to enlist in the help and skill of MGs across Arizona to grow native milkweed seedlings in a grassroots effort to conserve the monarch butterfly. For the third year, we are giving dedicated gardeners the opportunity to partake in a citizen-science conservation initiative in which gardeners will receive 8-10 native milkweed seedlings to plant in their common garden and record and submit data on the growth and vitality of various species of milkweeds.

If you are interested in being involved, please read, fill out, and submit the application and return the application by email to by March 25th.
Link to general info
Milkweed Project Application

Hattie Braun

County Director
Assistant in Extension
Master Gardener Program Coordinator
Coconino Cooperative Extension
University of Arizona
2304 N. 3rd St.
Flagstaff, AZ  86004

Phone: (928)773-6118
Fax: (928)774-1860

Sunday, February 25, 2018

39th Annual Keep Sedona Beautiful Wildflower Workshop

Our fearless leader, Hattie Braun, is keynoting at the 39th Annual Keep Sedona Beautiful Wildflower Workshop on Saturday, April 7th. She will also be receiving the 12th Annual Norman B. Herkenham Award. Sorry this wasn't available to share sooner but I just heard about it at yesterday's executive meeting. If you want to check out the site for the details here it is:

Unleash Your Garden’s Wild Side: Garden Design Using Native Plants

Many gardeners love the idea of using native plants in their home landscape but struggle with how to use them. One common misconception is that native plants look too unkempt, too messy or just too wild. With a little planning, attention to some principles of landscape design, and careful selection of plants, many of us can have a native plant landscape that works in harmony with the environment, provides a haven for native wildlife, and is attractive in the most urban of settings. Whether you want to add a few native plants to an existing landscape or are starting from scratch, this talk focuses on steps and ideas to help you create an appealing landscape using primarily native plants.
Hattie Braun has lived and gardened in Flagstaff for 25 years. She has a M.S. in Horticulture from Pennsylvania State University. After moving west, Hattie quickly learned that she wasn’t in Pennsylvania anymore and signed up for the Coconino Master Gardener program to learn about both the joys and challenges of gardening in a dry environment. She began coordinating the Coconino Master Gardener for the University of Arizona Cooperative Extension in 2003. Hattie has the good fortune to be able to work with many wonderful Northern Arizona gardeners on a variety of projects and topics including native plant gardens, invasive species, pollinator gardens, low-water landscaping, vegetable gardens, and rain gardens. In 2016, Hattie took on the additional role of Director for Coconino Cooperative Extension.

Saturday, February 3, 2018

CMGA 2018 Grant Application

Call for Garden Grant Applications

The Coconino County Master Gardener Association is currently accepting applications for the 2018 gardening season. Submit your application by
              February 20th, 2018

Application forms can be found at
Or contact Jackee Alston @ or (928) 814-2280 to have an electronic copy sent to you.
Qualifying projects should:
1.                 Fill a need or give value to the community and/or CMGA.
2.                Have some educational component for gardeners on the project.

Notification of funding will be announced early March and checks mailed shortly after.

Friday, February 2, 2018

Coconino Master Gardener Spring Workshops

This year the CMGA will be holding spring garden workshops presented by Penn & Cord Parmenter from Colorado. Check out their website for info on what they are experts on. It is a great sight.

The workshops will be held on March 24 & 25, at Shepherd of the Hills Lutheran Church, Benson Hall (1601 N. San Francisco, Flagstaff, AZ)

The topics covered are:
Mountain Food Growing 101
Passive Solar Greenhouse Growing
Top 10 Vegetables for the Mountains
Integrated Pest Management and Companion Growing
Cost is separate for each topic.

CMGA Gardening Workshops on-line Registration Form
CMGA Gardening Workshop Flyer

Check out Penn & Cord;s Garden in Colorado -
Merion Sharp is the contact person -.   970-903-7761.

Thursday, February 1, 2018

Docent Training to Begin at The Arboretum

--Learn and Teach Northern Arizona Ecology--

FLAGSTAFF, Arizona. The Arboretum at Flagstaff announces its 2018 Docent Training Program for community members who would like to share their deep love for our northern Arizona landscape with Arboretum visitors. Docents lead daily tours of the Arboretum grounds at 11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. from April 15 – October 31, as well as school tours.

Training and materials are FREE. Classes are held every Wednesday, March 7 - April 25 (except March 21) from 10am-2:15pm. March classes are held at the Coconino Cooperative Extension offices on N 3rd Street in Flagstaff and April classes will be held at The Arboretum at Flagstaff.

Topics include the mission and history of the Arboretum, forest health, conservation, ecology and sustainability, botany and ethnobotany, horticulture and gardening techniques, and much more.  A full description of the docent program is available on The Arboretum’s website, 

The Arboretum at Flagstaff is home to 750 species of plants in gardens, greenhouses, and natural habitats and is located 4 miles south of Route 66 on Woody Mountain Road on Flagstaff's west side. The Arboretum offers summer nature camps, school programs, and a variety of other fun and informative events.  Admission is $10 for adults; $7 for seniors, and $5 for youth 5 and up.  The Arboretum is open daily, except Tuesdays, from 9:00am to 4:00pm, April 15 through October 31 (Memorial Day – Labor Day 9:00am to 5:00pm). Visit for more information.

Contact: Shannon Benjamin
February 1, 2018                                                                     (928) 774-1442, ext. 127