By Emily Eubanks
ST. AUGUSTINE, FL—The Florida Master Gardener program, part of the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, recently created a Legacy Fund to help support educational projects directly in counties. The Legacy Fund was created by an anonymous donor in 2017, and the first applications were received in the summer of 2018.
“The Master Gardener Legacy Fund will support important and impactful Florida Master Gardener outreach projects in their local communities,” said Wendy Wilber, UF/IFAS Florida Master Gardener program statewide coordinator.
St. Johns County Master Gardener is the first recipient awarded the Legacy Fund for its St. Johns County Youth Garden Club project. The garden club provides enrichment classes to six elementary schools, two community centers, and two preschools, and reaches approximately 830 students a year.
The funds awarded will expand the number of classes reached by providing 10 new raised garden beds, replenishing soil in 10 existing beds, repairing and building irrigation at three schools and purchasing additional bedding plants.
“We are incredibly grateful to have been selected as the recipient of this year’s Master Gardener Legacy Fund. It will enable the St. Johns County Master Gardener program to broaden the scope of students to which we offer gardening programs by funding programs in new schools as well as grades that we have not yet served,” said Terra Freeman, urban and commercial horticulture agent for UF/IFAS Extension St. Johns County.
The Florida Master Gardener program is a volunteer-driven program that benefits the University of Florida and the citizens of Florida. The program relies on dedicated volunteers who have an interest in gardening and in giving back to their communities.
Click here to donate to the Master Gardener Legacy Fund.
The mission of the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences is to develop knowledge relevant to agricultural, human and natural resources and to make that knowledge available to sustain and enhance the quality of human life. With more than a dozen research facilities, 67 county Extension offices, and award-winning students and faculty in the UF College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, UF/IFAS works to bring science-based solutions to the state’s agricultural and natural resources industries, and all Florida residents. Visit the UF/IFAS web site at ifas.ufl.edu and follow us on social media at @UF_IFAS.