The Gardens of SJC Master Gardeners have become a popular wedding spot in Coldspring. 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 next to 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 decided to expand the Butterfly/Demonstration Garden to include a small vegetable garden, a 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 monthly work days, 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 sound, 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 that visitors can successfully grow their own vegetables, herbs and roses with very little care in a relatively small space by properly amending the native soil and choosing varieties of plants appropriate for our area.
- Increase citizen awareness of SJC Master Gardener’s programs and services.
In January 2018 SJCMG submitted an award application for the Gardens and won third place in the state of Texas.
Below are several documents related to the Gardens, compiled by former Garden Chair Sandra Smith. Be sure to check out all the worksheets in the Projects and Estimates 2018 workbook below.
Do you want to memorialize a loved one? Or, honor a hero? Contact us if you would like to order a brick/stone. Several sizes including art work are available. Your bricks will be placed in the Butterfly Memorial Garden located at the Coldspring Community Center.