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Rhonda J. Ferree

Rhonda J. Ferree
Former Extension Educator, Horticulture

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Rhonda Ferree's Horticulture Blog

Fulton County Master Gardeners Awarded for Service

Master Gardeners (MGs) in Fulton County were recognized at a program on March 4th at Monicals restaurant in Canton, IL.

There are 29 active MGs, 3 interns, and four trainees in currently in Fulton county. MGs must each receive at least 10 hours of continuing education and provide at least 30 hours of volunteer service in an approved MG project to maintain their active status. In 2012, Fulton MGs far exceeded the state requirements. They received almost 1000 hours of continuing education and volunteered nearly 2000 hours of service to others, impacting hundreds of people of all ages.

Just a few of the volunteer activities that Fulton county MGs do are fair & 4-H shows, Gardeners' Big Day, Japanese beetle education, help with MG training, Junior MG leadership, Jones Park, native gardens at Dickson Mounds museum, plant detective work, community gardens, and so much more.

Special recognition went to MG Sally Hart in 2012. Sally passed awway in August 2012 and in her memory gardening books will be placed in teh Cuba an Canton libraries to share Sally's love of gardening and to help otehrs learn to grow. Illinois atate Master Gardener program coordinator Monica David presented Sally her award in person.

The prestigious sustained excellence MG award goes to less than 3% of MG in the state. Fulton county recipient is Mary Lou Kuchan.

MGs throughout Illinois are recognized for Illinois MG teamwork wards. The Jones Park project has been recognized as a project of excellence. This project was crated as a community jewel where the public can gather to enjoy the gardens bu most importantly to interact with the volunteers and learn about best practices in gardening. Plants are maintained by community teams and gardening workshops are held.

University of Illinois Extension honors MGs with a certificate for years of volunteer involvement, and a pin to honor 5, 10, and 15 year volunteers. Fulton county milestones awarded include:
Jo Ann Block- 15 years
Jane Brewer - 12 years
Bob Burnham - 5 years
Freda Burnham - 13 years
Elizabeth Champlin - 17 years
Paul Dillefeld - 14 years
Kathy Edwards - 5 years
Nancy Hebb - 13 years
Judy Holloway - 14 years
Melinda Jones - 11 years
Bob Keene - 5 years
Carol Kohler - 8 years
May Lou Kuchan - 14 years
Linda Lane - 4 years
Karen Lowe - 13 years
Jody McCamey - 3 years
Kay McCance - 9 years
Terry Meade - 11 years
Pam Merrill - 13 years
Palma Miller - 3 years
Carla Murray - 2 years
Karen Pasko - 51 intern hours
Rita Potter - 3 years
Julia Pryor - 5 years
Bev Reffett - 12 years
Jackie Trotter - 11 years
Mary Virag - 7 years
Susan Walters - 5 years

We give a big thanks to the effort and dedication exhibited by these MGs. Thank you all for your service and dedication which "Helps Others Learn to Grow."

Master Gardeners in Peoria, and Tazewell counties will be recognized at upcoming events.

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