Becoming a Master Gardener was a bucket list item for Tracy Morgan. Four years after she moved to Washington from Ohio, she joined the Washington State University Extension Master Gardeners Program. Two years after that, she is hosting live webinars on a multitude of topics related to gardening, homesteading and agriculture.
Morgan’s most recent seminar tackled the topic of reusing in the reduce, reuse, recycle chain. While watching her children and their friends hang out and asking them about what her next talk should be about, one of the kids mentioned creating something new out of reused plastic bottles. Morgan got to work, researching the many different uses for old plastic bottles. After stumbling upon many different ideas, Morgan settled on building a backyard waterfall out of the recycled bottles.
“I came across the plastic bottle waterfall online and thought, ‘wow, that’s really unique,” Morgan said.
Over the course of the 20-minute session, Morgan described the process of creating the makeshift waterfall, which doesn’t require advanced construction skills or many parts.
“The most difficult part of (creating the waterfall) for me was finding enough plastic bottles,” Morgan said, explaining that she and her family don’t drink out of plastic very often.
Luckily for those that don’t use too many plastic bottles in day-to-day life, Morgan said the bottle requirement is subjective and the artist can use as many or as few as they have to craft their waterfall.
Each waterfall is up to interpretation and can be different depending on the person. Along with plastic bottles, creating the waterfall requires a sharp knife (X-Acto preferred), screws and a sturdy wooden board.
“You don’t have to use wood but I highly recommend using wood as it is sturdier,” Morgan explained.
Because each waterfall is up to the artist's interpretation, creating them and working with children and adults during the workshop is fun for Morgan.
“I get really excited about just being able to interact and I really like it when we have a group of kids that asks questions,” Morgan said. “I like that and I like the opportunity for our kids to ask adults tough questions. Especially with something they like doing.”
For Morgan, the Master Gardener program is more than just workshops.
“I think a lot of people don’t realize how much information the Master Gardeners have for people,” she said, talking about the numerous clinics, gardens and more around the community. “The Master Gardeners can help you identify plants and troubleshoot solutions.”
If you would like to learn more about the Master Gardener program and their future events, visit mastergardener.wsu.edu/.
Those interested in watching the seminar on the waterfall can request a recording by emailing Gary Fredricks at Garyf@wsu.edu.