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April 2023 Monthly Meeting Recap

With the volunteering & gardening season arriving, there were lots of ideas for getting involved and incorporating edible plants into an aesthetic landscape.


The April monthly meeting was held both online via Zoom and in-person at the Roseville Oval from 6:30 - 8:30 p.m on Tuesday, April 18. Watching the recording of this meeting can be counted as 2 hours of Continuing Education. (Find the recording in the Archives of the Monthly Meeting page.) Please note that the Zoom recording had audio difficulties in the beginning.

Reminder on Monthly Meeting Etiquette

If you’re in person:

  • Use the mic when speaking

  • Say your name when speaking

  • Use notecards to ask questions

  • Introduce yourself to someone new

  • Keep the tables clean

If you’re online:

  • Mute your mic while you listen

  • Say your name when you speak

  • Enter your questions into the chat or hold on until the end


Many thanks to the RCMG volunteers involved with the April Meeting:

  • Education Committee: Jane Carlstrom & Simba Blood

  • Project Leaders: Simba Blood, Jeanne Buck, Gene Ranieri

  • Journalist: Mindy Johnson

  • Room-Set: Mary McCarron & Scott Beary

  • Greeters: Sarah Hilger & Nancy Glass

  • TimeKeeper: Rose Peterson

  • Zoom Aide: Kristina Hughes

  • Room Clean-up: Scott Beary

Board News (6:30-6:45)

Jane Carlstrom shared the schedule for RCMG meetings over the summer:

  • The June RCMG meeting will be the 2nd Tuesday of the month at the Barn.

  • The July RCMG meeting will be at the Highland Bridge project on our regular meeting night, the 3rd Tuesday of the month.

  • The August RCMG volunteers will have a joint meeting with Washington County; they will be hosting and it will not be on a Tuesday as they don’t have meetings that day.

  • The September thru November meetings will be at the Oval in Roseville.

Watch the newsletter for more information.We will have SignUp Genius so we have an idea of how many people will be attending the meetings.

Project Updates (6:45-7:00 pm)

Preserve Rice Street Community Gardens

Gene speaks about an unofficial Master Gardener project with the Rice Street Gardens that he has been working on recently as a consultant. Rice Street gardens is a unique garden community, which has a population of immigrant families. He started doing typical cleanup of the space and learned it was owned by the St. Paul Regional Water Services board. He got a group of Master Gardeners together to visit the gardens, and they learned from the Rice Street Gardens community gardening techniques they learned in their homeland. The Rice Street Gardens community is looking to buy the property from the St. Paul Regional Water Services. Visit the Rice Street Gardens website for more information about their upcoming festival, donating to their community garden, and more.

Barn Gardens (Jeanne Buck)

RCMG volunteers can get involved in planning committees. The Barn on White Bear Ave is a historic building, and we’re currently working on connecting the barn to city infrastructure. All the raised beds installed last fall will need to be moved temporarily, as that is where we are having a waterline connected.

There are Barn garden opportunities for RCMG volunteers. The barn won’t have water as the nursing home next door has been sold. A new water main has to be built by the end of May. RCMG volunteers are needed to move the raised beds this Saturday. SignUp Genius shifts are up. There will be water, hot coffee and treats for those who volunteer.

Aldrich Arena Rain Gardens (Simba Blood)

At the Aldrich Arena gardens there is a series of large rain gardens that have been turned over to the county. This is an opportunity to increase knowledge of rain gardens, their benefits, and their care and share this knowledge with others. Maintenance is needed Thursdays and Sundays including: sediment removal, weeding, checking plant survival and replanting. RCMG volunteer shifts will be on SignUp Genius as needed.

School Projects (Susan Cathey)

Saint Paul Schools is a RCMG partner. The coordinator of the school gardens sent a request for youth projects. There is also a request for a project that is not for youth, but their Title One Office at 1021 Marian needs one person to put together a flower garden adjacent to Wellstone Elementary School. Anyone interested contact Susan this evening or tomorrow or it will be posted on SignUp Genius.

Plant Sale Update (Darren Lochner)

Reminder that the plant sale is coming up May 20th. Share RCMG Facebook posts, please promote the sale when you’re able by posting flyers at places that allow them. Look for SignUp Genius volunteer shifts as they are made available. Read updates about the plant sale

Darren Lochner's Coordinator Updates (7:00pm-7:15pm)

State Program News

The State Master Gardener Conference is June 2 and June 3 at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum. The early bird registration has been extended through May 12.The easiest way to register is through the Arboretum website. There will be 2 keynote speakers including Kelly Norris who will have with him his new book The New Naturalism. Julie Weisenhorn will be in the hydrangea garden. There will also be a hosta presentation and The Burton and Virginia Myers Education Center, our new home at the farm, will be open.

Check out the State Conference Site


  • Thanks to the RCMG volunteers who helped with the Junior Master Gardener program.

  • Thanks to the project leaders for helping out at the Volunteer Fair.

  • Reminder to bring name tags to the RCMG monthly meetings and volunteer events. Also, bring your own water bottle if able to. Wear a maroon shirt when possible to meetings and volunteer events to help with UMN Extension branding.

  • IMPORTANT: If you sign up for a shift, please be responsible and show up or find someone who can cover your shift. Brianna Gohde mentioned to be careful about double booking yourself for shifts, if you need to find coverage please reach out to other master gardeners.

  • Record your volunteer hours. It’s good to keep paper copies of your hours as a backup. There are always continuing educational opportunities on the website for RCMG volunteers.

Guest Lecture (7:15-8:15pm)

Edible Landscaping: Blending Beauty and Bounty

Julie Weisenhorn taught landscape design and is now a UMN Extension educator in Horticulture and State Director of the Master Gardener program. Julie is also known for the WCCO Saturday morning Smart Gardens show.

Julie stated that this presentation will have a little something for everyone. She answers the questions: What is edible landscaping? Why edible landscaping? People are interested in growing fruits and vegetables in more urban landscapes rather than traditional settings. Edible landscaping expands food horizons and encourages people to eat healthier. Interplanting ornamentals with edibles reduces pests and allows gardeners to maximize space.

Questions from the audience

  1. My friend planted Asian greens and they attracted tons of Japanese beetles. Are there any ornamentals that can be planted to deter them from attacking the greens?

  2. Is there a good plant that can be used under raspberries as a living mulch?

  3. What vegetables would I include in a pollinator garden?

  4. When will the garden at the Arboretum be ready?

  5. What are some educational elements (ie.workshops) that the Arboretum is adding?

  6. Is it too late to prune apple and pear trees now?

  7. Can you recommend any edibles for dry soil?

  8. Question regarding pruning hedges.

  9. When you’re growing herbs and let them flower, would it affect the flavor of the herbs?

  10. Have you grown potatoes in bags or containers?

  11. Any ideas for edible gardens with jumping worms? Should we maybe try perennials?

Recap provided by Mindy Johnson


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