The Van Buren Master Gardeners held their monthly meeting and belated Christmas potluck on Jan. 13, 2014, at Petit Jean Electric’s conference room in Clinton.

Eight new Master Gardeners for 2013, taking the required 40 hours course sponored by UA Horticulture Department, and two transfers were welcomed and presented with a set of Southern Living gardening books.

Barb Foster was presented with a box of biscotti for having worked the most hours, 157.5 sanctioned project work hours. She devoted most of her time to the beautiful Rose Garden in Ed Leamon Park.

New officers for 2014 are: President Verna Hicks, Vice President Bob Berdine, Secretary Maud Huber, Treasurer Freida McClellan, and project leaders Steve Smith and Barb Kottler.

Lifetime members and their years of service were recognized — Beverly Stancil with17 years, Bob and Sharon Berdine with 16 years, Larry and Jeannie Castro, Fran Hunkins and Al Marron, each with 15 years. Happy 88th birthday to long-time Master Gardener Al Marron, proving you’re never to old to garden.

The Van Buren County Master Gardeners are looking forward to another successful year in 2014. — Marguerite Dory