Livingston County Master Gardener Projects

4-H Fairgrounds

18142 4h Park Rd., Pontiac, IL

A two-part project: First, a pollinator garden at the South Gate of the park contains 18 varieties of plants, 2 types of bushes, and a red bud tree. The plants are labeled. The second part is the pots at the fairgrounds, which various master gardeners design and plant. Plants are chosen due to sunlight and moisture needs.

container planter placed at 4h park pontiac illinois

Dargan Park

732 E Madison St, Pontiac, IL

A native plant garden to show the public how attractive native plants can be. Plants were chosen to give continuous color throughout the season. It is also designated as a monarch way station, pollinator pocket, and wildlife habitat site.

dargan park pollinator plot
Extension Office Prairie and Pollinator Garden

1412 S Locust St, Pontiac, IL

This site was chosen to highlight the Master Gardener program to office visitors and provide education on native plants and how they can be incorporated into the home landscape.

The garden showcases native and pollinator plants that bloom throughout the season! Clusters of plants are chosen for their high pollen and nectar values to provide a food source for pollinators, birds and other wildlife. Planting in clumps provides easy access by having lots prime resources close together. The site is designated as a Pollinator Pocket, and he plot has also been part of the I Pollinate program.

This is an evolving Master Gardener project with plans for expansion in the next few years, including plans to apply for recognition as wildlife habitat and as a Monarch Waystation.

prairie and pollinator garden

The Village of Flanagan

Flanagan, IL

The Village of Flanagan is promoting an ongoing community beautification program, and Master Gardeners are helping. After receiving two grants, Master Gardeners created a registered Monarch Waystation as well as a Pollinator Pocket at the Flanagan Library. They were instrumental in having 6 raised beds built, raised beds that now beautify Artesian Park. Flowers are chosen from the school’s greenhouse and planted each year by Master Gardeners for these raised beds along with beds at the two Welcome signs, the Community Center, Legion Lake, Polli Nator’s Garden, and the library grounds. Master Gardeners continue to offer horticulture related advice to the Village.

flanagan public library prairie planter

Flanagan School Garden

202 E Falcon Hwy, Flanagan, IL

Originated in the 1990’s, the garden was created as a butterfly garden. One part was devoted to native prairie plants and one part consisted of flowering perennials. Teachers did the original plantings and students sometimes visited the garden during school. Later, the high school agriculture classes added a raised vegetable garden. In the spring of 2015, the garden underwent a transformation with the help of the Livingston County Master Gardeners. Grade school classes were invited to help plant a sunflower house, vegetables, and annual flowers. In the fall, they helped plant daffodils and tulips. The high school horticulture class planned and planted a perennial border. These planting days with students continue each spring and fall. Classes come out for story times and visit the garden to look for insects and to learn about plants. The most recent project is the I-Pollinate Garden. This garden was created to learn about attracting pollinators with annuals and swamp milkweed. The garden has become a learning experience for students and Master Gardeners. It enhances the beauty of the school and receives many compliments from teachers, staff, students, and community members. The garden is registered as a Master Gardener project, a Pollinator Pocket, and a Monarch Waystation.

flanagan school garden

Yost House Garden

298 W Water St, Pontiac, IL 61764

In the spring of 2014, the Yost House Garden at the Catherine V. Yost House Museum was created as a joint project between the Livingston County Master Gardeners and the city of Pontiac. The Yost House is a beautiful Victorian home built in 1898. The cottage garden is planted with perennials, native plants, tulips, and daffodils that are in keeping with the time period of the house. The original plantings included purple coneflower, white coneflower, garden phlox, obedient plant, black-eyed Susan, tiger lilies, cranesbill geranium, false sunflower, New England aster, and coreopsis. In the fall of 2014 a variety of tulips and daffodils were planted to add springtime color. Each spring and summer, more annuals, herbs, a few vegetables, and perennials are added to enhance the beauty of the garden. Each summer, an educational program is presented for the public. These programs have included activities such as making herbal teas and herbal bath mixtures, making pesto, constructing succulent wreaths, and sharing tips about edible landscaping. The garden is registered as a Master Gardener project and a Pollinator Pocket.

annual flower bed at Yost House in pontiac, IL

Educational Outreach Programs


Youth Enrichment Lessons

Master Gardeners created an outreach program for youth in the schools of Livingston County. Work in groups of three, volunteers present 45-minute lessons to students to 5th grade and 2nd grade classes during the fall and spring of each school year. Lessons are provided on a variety of topics such as insects, the prairie food chain, and seeds. The lessons are well received by students and teachers in the county.

A Day in the Garden Patch

A morning filled with gardening education, hosted in spring just in time to help gardeners find inspiration on their own gardening projects. There is always a make and take component and time to gather with other gardeners. This program sells out every spring as it is loved by gardeners in the community.