For years I wanted to take the Master Gardener course.
At first I was motivated to learn some basic botany that I lacked. It’s nice to be able to say, confidently … well, that’s a stamen, there’s a pistil, and these are the sepals.
When I finally took the class last year, my motivations had shifted. I still needed to fill in some knowledge gaps, but I was also motivated by gratitude. Since moving to Anchorage in 2006, I’d learned plenty from gardeners around Alaska – many of them Master Gardeners – who were generous with their time and everything they’d learned over decades.
I finished the Master Gardener course in early December while my life was changing in some dramatic ways. At first I wasn’t sure how I would meet the requirement to provide 40 hours of community service. Eventually, I realized that I had all the raw materials and the ideas to put together a website/blog, plus the makings of a decent readership thanks to all of my contacts in the gardening community.
That’s how Transcendental Gardening got started, and while I haven’t broken any blogging records, the feedback on this site has been gratifying. Since March, I’ve had more than 400 visitors and more than 1,300 views on various posts and pages. They’ve spiked most often when friends have reposted them.
Today I received my certificate of completion of the Master Gardener course in the mail.
Receiving my certificate was pretty exciting, even though it doesn’t make me an expert, or any more masterful than a few local green thumbs I’ve met who haven’t sat through an official course.
I want to thank my course instructor, Mat-Su/Copper River District Extension Agent Steve Brown, and Gina Dionne, project assistant at the Cooperative Extension Service’s Anchorage Outreach Center, for supporting my use of this space to fulfill my course requirement.
I won’t stop posting here just because I met my requirements. I hope to keep posting about once a week, at least through the end of 2019.