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St Charles County Master Gardener Steering Committee Meeting Minutes (Final)

Friday, 12 March 2021


Attendees: Joe Walker, Rebekah Davis, Rebecca Poon, Cindy Platzer, Jan Carron, Justin Keay, Bonnie Winkler, Patti Kolek, Terri Scheer, Mary Medina


Call to Order: Joe Walker called the meeting to order at 9:06 AM Beka Davis confirmed Quorum.

The Steering Committee met virtually on Zoom


Secretary’s Report: Rebekah Davis-

Steering Committee meeting minutes for 12 February 2021 were approved as written.


Treasurer’s Report: Rebecca Poon-

Rebecca reported the net monthly change for February (-$474.86). End of February 2021 cash in bank was identified. Unallocated dollars were shown. Remaining Demo Garden allocation was shown. Remaining Plant Sale Allocation was shown. Revenue, expenses and net income were shown. Rebecca mentioned that the revenue from the DigIn has arrived and will appear on the books in the Treasurer’s report for March.


MU Horticulturalist Specialist: Justin Keay

COVID-19 policy onsite vs offsite: Justin Keay provided an update in regards to current COVID procedures. Outside events are not subject to University guidelines while off Extension property.


Committee Reports


Membership: Waneta Parmenter, Bonnie Winkeler

Bonnie Winkler provided a report on the Membership Committee’s recent accomplishments and plans going forward. Focus is on streamlining the Year End analysis and maintaining an accurate MG directory. The reporting database is still down. Integrating new MG Interns is a major concern.


Plant Sale: Marsha Brown, Libby Wilson

Joe Walker reported that the Demo Gardens will be off-limits during days of plant sale pick-ups, check the MG calendar for dates. Spring sale activities are underway and the flyer has gone public on the MG website.

Greenhouse: Laura Steimel, Nancy Torke

Joe Walker reported that work in the greenhouse is progressing well. The propane levels have been checked and should be good for the rest of the season.


Communication: Mary Medina, Mary Carey

Joe Walker reported that Mary Medina will be out of town March 18 – 22 so any information for the newsletter should be turned in before then. Communication is to be done first through Joe Walker, the communication outlets are distributed as follows:

  Various specific portals (Monday Morning News)- Mary Medina 

  University Website- Justin Keay

  Extension Website- Justin Keay

  MG Website- Mary Carey- Plant sale order forms are now available. Mary Carey is looking for a cowebmaster         trainee

  Extension Facebook- Justin Keay

  MG Facebook- Mary Carey

  YouTube Channel- Zack Blair

  MOMGA News- Mary Medina, Joe Walker, Waneta Parmenter 

Waiting on new database status. MOMGA newsletter should come out mid-month. We are looking for someone to monitor MOMGA meetings/newsletters and report back to SC and membership regarding updates to MOMGA activities, database rollout, etc.


Demo Gardens: Cindy Platzer, Marsha Brown


Cindy Platzer provided a report on the March 6 Demo Garden Leads meeting. Plans are being made to provide a Demo Garden orientation meeting on Zoom for MG Interns, the tentative date for that is set for Saturday, March 20th at 10:00 AM. Cindy will also be working with Demo Leads on recording voices for the self-guided tour QR code project that she has partnered to do with Zack Blair.


Speakers: Val Mertz

February guest speaker went well. Need to work on attendee protocols for Zoom.

March 25 MG meeting: (2 speakers) Dr. Jennie Atkins, Univ Of Ill Champaign Urbana; What are Growing Degree Days and how do they help gardeners?

Charlotte Wiggins: Beekeeper/Gardener/Author Phenology; Blooms, Bees, and GDDs The presentation has been qualified for Advanced MG CE credit (AT).

If anyone has heard a good speaker or is interested in a topic of a particular topic please send the ideas to Val.


Hort Line: Patti Kolek

The Hort Line is receiving plant orders via email. The HL is continuing to work from home on a call-in basis. Dedicated volunteers usually sign up for a week at a time and check the emails at least once a day. Future Hort Line training only after the office is open.


Education: Jan Carron

  Jan Carron reported on the March 9 Education Committee meeting and the statistics for the successful 2021 Dig-In. Jan reported the Dig-In recordings have been delayed and are in the process of being edited for viewing. The Steering Committee discussed potentially providing giftcards for the Dig-In guest speakers. A motion to approve expenditure of $25 honorarium in the form of a giftcard was approved by the Steering Committee pending direction from our Coordinator (Justin Keay) that it isn’t a violation of any University policies. Justin Keay will clarify this with the Regional Director.

Digital Media Subcommittee: Zack Blair-

YouTube videos are posted to MG Facebook through links. The Subcommittee is currently focusing on developing procedures and content topics by season. Other status and information reports


St. Charles Historic Gardens: Terri Scheer

Terri Scheer reported on the current progress, accomplishments, and plans for the Historic Gardens. Updates are being provided to the MG newsletter. All 4 volunteer slots have been filled and approved as MO Park Volunteers. Tuesday work days from 8-11 will begin on March 16. The St. Charles Historic site plans to open to the public April1, 2021.



Old Business:

Suggested expansion of Steering Committee: Proposed expansion to include the Education Committee Representative as a voting member, similar to the Demo Garden Lead. This requires Coordinator authorization to change SC, and needs MG development of responsibilities documentation for inclusion into MG bylaws. Justin Keay will send out a formal notification to the membership.


Review and communication of the long term and short-term goals of MG – deferred again due to time constraints.


New Business:

Selected Master Gardener of the Month for March is Libby Wilson.

O’Fallon Boys and Girls Club: We have sufficient interest to put together an outdoor classroom program for the Boys and Girls Club of O’Fallon. Details are being worked out with B&G management.

Boys and Girls Club St. Charles City Location is requesting MG consultation services with possible future collaborative effort. Justin Keay will look into this and get back to the Steering Committee with more information next SC meeting.


Social media/marketing request procedure: Justin Keay discussed procedures specifying the time frame from putting forth a social media or marketing request to when it will be posted. Examples: Social media post needs a week notice in advance, creative flyer requires a two-week notice, and coordinating for big events should occur a month prior.


Project idea/proposal with STC County Parks and Government: Justin Keay proposed working toward developing a “Raingardens and Urban Storm Water Management” multi-site outreach and engagement event. Classes, raffle items and encouraging community involvement with the goal to increase water management awareness. Joe Walker mentioned looking into Kansas City’s 10,000 Raingarden Initiative for inspiration.


The Membership Committee proposes the creation of an SC committee Intern Welcome Committee for St. Charles MG Trainees and Interns. Education, Membership, Demo Garden all have a stake in this. • The initial focus of this committee would be to develop an updated agenda and brief, reusable document to help welcome Interns.

   • Trainees would be invited to a (Zoom) meeting towards the end of their core class. We may need to run this meeting a couple of times for each class to accommodate schedules. Springboards into volunteer opportunities. Proposed initial committee should at a minimum include:

    • someone from the Steering Committee,

    • at least one person from the demo garden lead team,

    • at least one person from membership and • some newer MG’s. It would be nice to get the perspective of what new MG have experienced, what worked and where they could have used additional guidance. 


Motion to approve formation of Intern Welcome Committee for St. Charles MG trainees as outlined above. The motion was approved.


Good of the Order: Review and communication of the long term and short-term goals of MG will be discussed at the next SC meeting. The next Steering Committee meeting is scheduled for Friday, 9 April @9:00 AM on Zoom.


Meeting was adjourned at 11:03 AM Respectfully submitted, Rebekah Davis

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