The Gardens of Coldspring Community Center have become a popular wedding spot, thanks to the planning and nurturing of nearly every member of SJC Master Gardeners. Although small in size, the winding pathways and native plants with something blooming most of the year offer a tranquil and beautiful spot for ceremonies, picnics and meditation.
Work began on a demonstration garden in 2014, originally designed and inspired by the late Connie Heiman. Located adjacent and around the Coldspring Community Center,the concept was to provide both aesthetic and educational purposes. This on-going project provides opportunities for plant and landscape demonstrations and is open year-round for the enjoyment of the residents and visitors of San Jacinto County.
Grants and Awards
In 2014, the SJCMG were recipients of a grant sponsored by the Native Plant Society of Texas. The SJCMG’s Bring Back the Monarch Grant funding was used at the Butterfly Memorial Demonstration Garden to collect data and encourage the growth, development and sustaining of the Monarch butterflies. The Texas Master Gardener Association, Inc. presented its Texas Search for Excellence Award to the SJCMGs for its Bring Back the Monarch Project at the Butterfly Memorial Demonstration Garden for small-sized Master Gardener groups.
Our Butterfly Memorial Garden was awarded second place in the Small Gardens Category at the state level in 2016.
In 2017, under Sandra Smith’s leadership, the Garden Committee expanded the Butterfly/Demonstration Garden to include a small vegetable garden, rose garden (which many think are difficult to grow), and an herb garden, in order to share a few of the many garden varieties from which a homeowner can choose. During workdays, crushed granite pathways were added, raised cinder block vegetable beds were constructed, and two new beds were created. Lattice panel walls were also erected on two sides of the garden. Host plants were added to attract more butterflies.
Key goals for the expansion included:
- Demonstrate reliable time-tested horticultural practices as taught by Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service.
- Encourage reduction of yard wastes entering landfills by utilizing “homemade” mulch and compost.
- Encourage water conservation by use of drip irrigation.
- Demonstrate how to successfully grow vegetables, herbs, and roses with very little care in a relatively small space by properly amending the native soil and choosing varieties of mostly native plants appropriate for our area.
- Increase citizen awareness of SJC Master Gardener’s programs and services.
The Gardens again won third place from Texas Master Gardeners in 2018.
Check out the garden information compiled by former Garden Chair Sandra Smith. Be sure to check out all the worksheets in the Projects and Estimates 2018 workbook below.