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Master Gardeners hosts children’s workshop at Farmers Market

by Marvin Richards | July 10, 2021 at 8:40 p.m.

The Union County Master Gardeners held a free class for children at Saturday’s Farmers Market at the Murphy Arts District.

The class taught attendees how to create a house or hideaway spot for garden toads.

Sharon Patterson, who has been a Master Gardener for three years, helped lead the class and explained why the organization wanted to hold the workshop.

“Every frog in your garden needs a house,” Patterson said. “So the kids today are painting flower pots today to serve as hiding spots for frogs.”

According to Patterson, frogs can be an essential part of a garden, and green spaces in general.

“They are helpful. They eat insects, spiders and they keep your beds (garden) neat and clean,” Patterson said. “They are good little creatures to have around and they need a little shelter sometimes, so that’s what we’re doing.”

About ten children gathered around the workstation that the Master Gardeners had set up and excitedly painted their toad homes. Several of them explored the numerous colors available and made multi-colored toad homes to take home and add to their garden space. Guardians and parents helped out with the children and got several laughs in as some of the children could be seen smelling the paint or being curious about nature.

Patterson shared what she hoped all that were in attendance would get out of the class.

“First, we hope they had fun,” Patterson said. “We’re so glad to see so many come out for the class. It is so fun for the children because they get to be creative.”

The Union County Master Gardeners recently hosted a community education project,featuring Eddie Albritton, owner of Union Environmental and Seeding at the South Arkansas Arboretum.

The program was geared towards home landscaping. That program, along with Saturday’s event, are all a part of the Union County Master Gardeners’ efforts to promote education around plants and farming, Master Gardener Barbie Luther told the News-Times in June.

“Horticulture education is a big part of our mission as Master Gardeners,” she said.

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