Elizabeth Murphy felt the time was right to become a Master Gardener when she moved from Colorado to East Texas. “I registered for the class as soon as I knew of our plans to move,” she says.
As a child, Murphy helped her maternal grandparents on their farm. “They had a huge vegetable garden as well as peach and pecan orchards. As kids, my siblings and I couldn’t wait to go gather the tomatoes, okra, and corn, knowing that we’d get to eat them at dinnertime.”
Eating fresh vegetables from the garden is still a delight for Murphy, and it is important to her to know how her food was grown. “One of the first things we installed were raised vegetable beds. Amid all the recalls and scares of produce, it’s very rewarding to go to the backyard and harvest greens.” She also loves “sharing the abundance with my neighbors, although they start running away about zucchini time.”
Having gardened for many years, vegetables are not the only thing Murphy grows. She has been “restoring the landscape” and is a self-described “avid container gardening fan” with around 20 pots of flowers. Murphy wisely uses micro-drip on her pots, “so they are very carefree.”
When asked what she enjoys most about being a Master Gardener, Murphy replies it is the people she most appreciates. “My Master Gardener class has remained very close. The general membership is a very diverse group of people, and their wealth of experience and knowledge is amazing.”
Master Gardeners Are Involved:
Murphy is co-chair of Henderson County Master Gardener Association’s Fall Conference, along with Claudia Durham. She is very enthusiastic about the event, to be held October 4 with guest speaker Neil Sperry. “I recently attended the 2018 State Master Gardener Conference held at Texas A&M University, and it was a wonderful experience. The speakers were inspiring, the workshops and tours were also top-notch. I returned home with a head full of new ideas and knowledge.” Murphy has incorporated some of those ideas into this year’s event.
Applications for this year’s Henderson County Master Gardener class are now being accepted.
Lydia Holley is an avid writer and gardener. She is a Master Gardener and member of the Henderson County Master Gardeners Association.