MSU Master Gardener Program

Being a master gardener involves doing volunteer activities. It is much fun meeting new people, being with other gardeners and sharing information as there is always something to learn!

Mary T. Ratelle Hepp
Michigan State University Advanced Master Gardener

Livingston Co. Ext. Advanced Master Gardener Info & Project by Mary T.

Livingston Co. Ext. Master Gardener Articles by Mary T.

Contact Information:

Wild Walk Gardens LLC PO Box #2087, Howell MI. 48844

The Advanced Master Gardener program requires a major commitment. For my Advanced project, I was fortunate to take part in the 'birth' of

The Howell Public Schools - Voyager Elementary 'Kinder Garden'

This project started in August of 2005. Planting and maintaining the garden with the kindergarten gardners in Ms. A. Risner and Mrs. S. Deyo classes was much fun! Maintaining the garden after school let out in June of 2006 was important to insure that it would survive the hot summer. This project ended in September of 2006. Sincere appreciation to both teachers for this opportunity.

Designing with the teachers' vision, a mixed garden for seasonal interest was drawn. Choosing hardy plants for this was a challenge due to the teachers desiring the garden placement to be directly outside their classroom windows, under the roof eaves, thus limiting access to rain water.

The next phase of the project was the site prep which was accomplished with many wonderful volunteers. Grass and other growth had to be removed and soil enhancers added to our tough Livingston County clay!

Classroom discussion and seed starting was much fun! The children planted a mixed garden and also learned about bulbs, perennials and Michigan native plants.

Dark brown mulch was sparingly used in my original garden, with small white border fences - very pretty! This garden is on the west side of the school by the bus parking lot.

Pictures of the original garden during my project year to be posted soon - please check back!


Contributing writer - MSU Master Gardener Newsletter - Livingston County Extension.

Note: The WWG LLC web site is currently under construction, the following articles
written by Mary T. as printed in the above newsletter will be added in the near future:

Enjoy Gardening with Native Plants and Wildflowers
2008 - Printed in the December 2008 issue.

Favorite Native Grasses, Ferns and Wildflowers
2008 - Printed in the December 2008 issue.

Moles, Voles and Holes!
2008 - Printed in the December 2008 issue.

Giving Orchids a Natural Experience ... My New Protocol
2007 - Printed in the April-May-June 2008 issue.

Understanding Terms on Vegetable Seed Labels
2007 - Printed in the April-May-June 2008 issue.

Amaryllis Care
2006 - Printed in the Jan-Feb-March 2007 issue.

Forget to Use 'Poise' When Around Ivy?
Printed in the April-May-June 2006 issue.

Babes in the Woods? Not!
Printed in the Jan-Feb-March 2006 issue.

Lessons Learned Relocating Large Conifers...!
Printed in the Jan-Feb-March 2003 issue.

And booklets:

A Collection of Livingston County Master Gardener's Tips!
Second edition 2001; First edition 2000.