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Gardeners Gathering

The purpose of the Gardeners’ Gatherings is to educate Master Gardeners and the public in latest trends, information and research in horticulture education. The gatherings during each year are led by experts in the field and last approximately two hours in length. All lectures begin at 6:30 pm, are free and open to the public.  Counts as two hours continuing education for Master Gardeners. 

2019 Presentations

Thursday, June 20, 2019 6:30-8PM-Gardeners’ Gathering
“Horticulture at the Zoo”, Presentation and tour at the Kansas City Zoo

The Master Gardeners of Greater Kansas City present Horticulture at the Zoo on Thursday, June 20, 6:30-8:00 p.m. at the Kansas City Zoo, 6800 Zoo Drive, Kansas City, MO.  Meet in the Deramus building by the main entrance.  YOU MUST REGISTER!!

If you love horticulture and zoology, this program is for you!  Join us as Crystal Broadus, KC Zoo Horticulture Manager, and Shawn Stuettger, KC Zoo Maintenance Supervisor, take us into their world of safely incorporating plants with animals in the zoo.  You will enjoy a 30-45 minute presentation followed by a walking tour.  Some of the topics covered will be:

  • Daily routines of horticulture staff
  • What goes into design for flower beds, landscaping and new exhibits
  • How horticulture is used for enrichment of animals
  • Plants and toxicity to animals
  • “Browse Garden” used to create limbs/vegetation for eating and stimulation
  • What plants are preferred by various animals
  • “Zoo Manoo” (compost) program
  • Tour of pollinator garden, polar bear green roof, rain garden, tropics building, monarch way station, Hallmark children’s garden

Attendance is limited to 40 people. The event is free, but registration is required and begins on May 25.  Register thru EventBrite HERE.  For more information call 816-523-5526 or e-mail chronwall@umkc.edu.

Thursday, August 22, 2019 6:30-8PM -Gardeners’ Gathering
Katie Kingery-Page “The Healing Garden”

Thursday, October 17, 2019 6:30-8PM – Gardeners’ Gathering
Theresa and Nik Hiremath “Gardening for the Birds and Bats”

Thursday, April 18, 2019 6:30-8PM-Gardeners’ Gathering
Benjamin Vogt “Gardening with Compassion: Capturing Biodiversity for the Future
In what ways do gardens help wildlife in a time of mass extinction and climate change? How can wilder urban landscapes foster health and equality for all species? What strategies from psychology, science, and environmental philosophy can we use to rewire our ethical codes and advocate for wildness at home, work, and school? Author and garden designer Benjamin Vogt will address how to practice defiant compassion as we stand up for the rights of nature and the places we call home.
Our landscapes push aside wildlife and in turn diminish our genetically-programmed love for wildness. How can we get ourselves back into balance through gardens, to speak life’s language and learn from other species?
Author Benjamin Vogt addresses why we need a new garden ethic, and why we urgently need wildness in our daily lives, lives sequestered in buildings surrounded by monocultures of lawn and concrete that significantly harm our physical and mental health. He examines the psychological issues around climate change and mass extinction as a way to understand how we are short circuiting our response to global crises, especially by not growing native plants in our gardens. Simply put, environmentalism is not political; it is social justice for all species marginalized today and for those facing extinction tomorrow.
By thinking deeply and honestly about our built landscapes, we can create a compassionate activism that connects us more profoundly to nature and to one another.

Thursday, February 21, 2019 “400 Million Years on Six Legs: Evolution of the Insects”
Do you appreciate insects or want a greater understanding of insects? Did you know that insects are the primary pollinators of our ecosystems? Did you know that insects were the first to fly, to sing, to develop societies and language? Come and learn more about these beneficial 6-legged creatures as The Master Gardeners of Greater Kansas City present 400 Million Years on Six Legs: Evolution of the Insects Thursday, February 21, 2019 6:30 pm at the Kauffman Conference Center, 4801 Rockhill Road, KCMO. Our guest speaker will be Michael S. Engel, University Distinguished Professor and Senior Curator at the University of Kansas. Prof. Engel studies the diversity and paleontological history of insects, exploring what the fossil record of insects can tell us about their evolution. He is also a specialist on the biodiversity of solitary bees, and has conducted entomological research in over 40 countries – from the High Arctic to equatorial deserts and rainforests. Aside from numerous entomological treatises, he is the author of the recent book, Innumerable Insects, and co-author of the earlier Evolution of the Insects. Free and open to the public. No registration required. Door Prizes. For further information call 816-523-5526 or visit our website @ mggkc.org and look for Gardeners’ Gathering under “Public Education”.Dr. Engel has discovered and named nearly 800 new species, including this 19-million-year old Dominican amber wasp (Leptofoenus pittfeldae) and the lovely Celia’s orchid bee (Euglossa celiae).

2018 Presentations

Thursday August 23 at 6:30-8pm. “The Philosophy and Aesthetics of Japanese Gardens”
Join local gardener Bryan Boccard on a journey through the myth, history, philosophy, and aesthetics of the Japanese garden identity. Bryan will compare and contrast Japanese and western gardens and discuss Japan’s unique connection to nature through Shinto with its reverence and gratitude to the land, to nature, and to the life that these natural elements give human beings. He will address the use of negative space, seasonality, the function of gardens in Japan, and the essential components of a Japanese garden.
This year, Bryan has been cultivating beauty at Powell Gardens, Kansas City’s Botanical Garden. Prior to moving to Kansas City, he spent four years in horticulture training at Longwood Gardens in Kennett Square, Pennsylvania. As a ‘Great Gardens of the World Triad Fellow’, Bryan lived in Japan for four months while working at several Japanese gardens, both traditional and modern. His firsthand experience brings a unique perspective to a garden style so popular, yet not fully understood by many westerners. Maybe you will find some ideas to carry over to your own garden.
Please join us at the Kauffman Foundation Conference Center, 4801 Rockhill Road, KC MO on August 23 at 6:30pm. Free and open to the public. No registration required. Door Prizes.  For further information call 816-523-5526 or e-mail chronwall@umkc.edu

Thursday, October 25, 2018 “Growing to New Heights: Using Ornamental Vines”
The Master Gardeners of Greater Kansas City present Growing to New Heights: Using Ornamental Vines Thursday, October 25, 2018, 6:30 pm at Kauffman Conference Center, 4801 Rockhill Road, KCMO. Yes, vines are potential thugs with their rampant growth, suckering and self-seeding. However, their virtues can justify the extra effort to manage their behavior and create stunning “vertical elements” in your landscape. Come see the array of garden structures designed to support climbers and learn the management techniques that can turn these wayward children into model citizens. Marais des Cygnes Extension Master Gardener Lenora Larson gardens for beauty and for wildlife on her 27 acre property, Long Lips Farm, in rural Paola. She is a proud ‘science geek’ with a degree in microbiology, a career in molecular biology and a life-long interest in botany, gardening and critters. She is a frequent contributor to Kansas City Gardener magazine.  Free and open to the public. No registration required. Door Prizes. For further information call 816-665-4456.

Thursday, February 15, 2018 Native Trees for Kansas City Landscapes
The Master Gardeners of Greater Kansas City present Native Trees for Kansas City Landscapes Thursday, February 15, 2018, 6:30 pm at Kauffman Conference Center, 4801 Rockhill Road, KCMO. Our presenter will be Chuck Connor who is a Community Forester with the Missouri Department of Conservation and has over 30 years’ experience in the care of trees and forest land. If you have not seen Chuck speak, don’t miss this event. He is very informative and adds humor and liveliness to his presentations. This presentation will cover how to select, plant and establish native trees in urban landscapes. Free and open to the public. No registration is required. Door Prizes. For further information call 816-665-4456.

Thursday, June 21, 2018 Tour of KC Water Swope Campus Green Infrastructure
Tour of KC Water’s Swope Campus Infrastructure
Thursday, June 21, 2018

Rain gardens, bioswales, native plantings, permeable pavers—are you interested in these gardening/water management elements but not sure how they work together?   Then please join the Master Gardeners of Greater Kansas city for a tour of the Kansas City Water Department’s new Swope Campus at 4800 E 63rd Street. This is definitely not your father’s water department!

KC Water employees will conduct guided tours of the green infrastructure, including native plantings, pervious concrete, porous asphalt, grasscrete, permeable pavers, rain gardens and bioswales. You will learn how these elements are built and maintained to catch, infiltrate and slowly release storm-water runoff from the campus, improving water quality in the Blue River and preventing erosion in the neighboring Big Blue Battlefield historic site.  The campus includes a paved walking trail and an outdoor plaza to support healthy living and connect campus buildings. Plants by the trail vary from mowed lawn to prairie and new tree plantings that will eventually provide shade.

Even the parking lots will knock your socks off! Medians, trees, landscape plantings and intelligent traffic flow enhance parking lot safely, sustainability and beauty. Outdoor lighting uses energy efficient LED technology to reduce energy consumption and light pollution while providing high quality light. The landscaping reduces the heat island effect, reduces water runoff and makes the site beautiful.

Tours start at 6:30 p.m., 7:00 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. The event is free, but registration is required through Eventbrite, https://www.eventbrite.com/e/tour-of-kc-water-swope-campus-green-infrastructure-tickets-45693101296  Registration starting on May 25 and ending June 15. For more information, call 816-523-5526 or e-mail: chronwall@umkc.edu

2017 Presentations

Thursday, June 15, 2017 “Garden and Pioneer Home Tour of Atkins-Johnson Farm in Gladstone”
Thursday, June 15, 2017 “Garden and Pioneer Home Tour of Atkins-Johnson Farm in Gladstone” The Master Gardeners of Greater Kansas City will guide you through a “Garden and Pioneer Home Tour of Atkins-Johnson Farm” in Gladstone, Thursday, June 15, 2017, 6:30 pm. The farm is located at 6607 NE Antioch Road, Gladstone, MO 64119. Once home to many people from 1824-2004, this small family farm stands as a wonderful reminder that farms of the past are still present and will always have stories to share. Discover a home that began as a single-room log cabin with a half-story sleeping loft. Enjoy the beautiful acres of preserved farmland, walk the trail to the historic Big Shoal Cemetery and look for wildlife along the way. Explore what's growing as you visit the heirloom garden, apple orchard, or pumpkin patch. Free and open to the public.

Thursday, August 17, 2017 – The Master Gardeners of Greater Kansas City present Heather Holm, Author of “Pollinators of Native Plants”. Learn how to attract, observe and identify pollinator and beneficial insects with native plants. Heather Holm is a landscape designer and consultant specializing in pollinator landscapes and native landscape restorations. She studied horticulture and biology at the University of Guelph in Canada, and for the past 20 years she has worked as a horticulturist and landscape designer in the Great Lakes and Mid-Atlantic regions. She is a passionate advocate for the use of native plants to attract and support pollinators, beneficial insects, and wildlife. Heather is an environmental educator and frequent presenter at conferences in the Midwest and Northeast. Kauffman Conference Center, 4801 Rockhill Road, KCMO at 6:30pm. Free and open to the public.

Thursday, October 19, 2017 “Invasives – Plants Gone Wild”  The Master Gardeners of Greater Kansas City present “Invasives-Plants Gone Wild” Thursday, October 19, 2017, 6:30 pm at Kauffman Conference Center, 4801 Rockhill Road, KCMO. Lynn Loughary, Horticulture Extension Agent for Kansas State Extension and Research will discuss invasive non-native plants that consume wildlife habitat and compete with crops. Participants will learn the characteristics of the most common invasive plants in Missouri and why their management or control is important.  Free and open to the public. No registration required. Door Prizes. For further information call 816-665-4456 or visit our website @ mggkc.org and browse Gardeners’ Gathering.

Thursday, February 16, 2017 “Best Garden Practices for Water Quality and Conservation” The Master Gardeners of Greater Kansas City present “Best Garden Practices for Water Quality and Conservation” Thursday, February 16, 2017, 6:30 pm at Kauffman Conference Center, 4801 Rockhill Road, KCMO. John Dunn, a Biologist and Environmental Engineer with the Environmental Protection Agency will talk about the many aspects of water quality and conservation and explore the current issues of concern. He will discuss how gardeners can be good stewards and protect our valuable water resources. Free and open to the public. No registration is required. Door Prizes. For further information call 816-665-4456 or visit our website @ mggkc.org and browse Gardeners’ Gathering.

Thursday, April 13, 2017 “Why Prairie Matters-New Relevancies of a Vanishing Landscape” The Master Gardeners of Greater Kansas City present “Why Prairie Matters –New Relevancies of a Vanishing Landscape”, Thursday, April 13, 2017, 6:30 pm at Kauffman Conference Center, 4801 Rockhill Road, KCMO. Carol Davit, Executive Director of Missouri Prairie Foundation. For 50 years, the Missouri Prairie Foundation has been conserving Missouri’s prairies and other native grasslands, some of the most imperiled habitats on the planet. Carol will talk about Missouri’s tall grass prairie which once covered 15 million acres in the state. Today, less than one-tenth of one percent remains. These fragments of a mighty ecosystem continue to provide benefits we cannot afford to lose. Free and open to the public. No registration is required. Door Prizes.

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University of Missouri Extension Master Gardener Program