Prosper Research & Demonstration Gardens
The Prosper Research & Demonstration Gardens are located at Rucker Elementary School, 402 South Craig Street, as well as at the nearby water tower at Craig and First Street in Prosper.
The Prosper Gardens are actually comprised of four separate gardens. All gardens utilize Earth-Kind® principles, which start with soil well amended with compost. We don’t use chemicals, thus no herbicides, pesticides or fertilizers are applied. And we always keep three or more inches of hardwood mulch in our beds to control weeds, retain moisture and provide nutrients as it decomposes.
At Rucker, the central portion of the garden contains six raised beds that contain primarily vegetables. We plant both spring and fall gardens. Surrounding the perimeter is a demonstration garden containing more than 70 varieties of shrubs and perennials. We made a specific effort this year to provide new clear labeling for all of our Rucker plants so folks can enjoy self-guided tours at their leisure. Rucker contains several pollinator plants making it a wonderful location to witness a variety of summer/fall butterflies.
At the water tower a half block north of Rucker we have two additional gardens. A research garden surrounds the tower itself. Planted in 2015, the research garden contains both dwarf shrubs (in four quadrants) and ornamental grasses (in three additional sections). The purpose of the research was to see what plants did well in North Texas with little water and no maintenance – i.e. something appealing to a non-gardening homeowner. Many of our shrubs did very well in the research including several dwarf hollies (Yaupon, Carissa, Chinese), Abelias (Rose Creek, Kaleidoscope), Dwarf Euonymous, Gulf Stream Nandina, Blue Pacific Shore Juniper, Dwarf Vitex. Additionally, a host of ornamental grasses performed well.
On the west side of the tower (both inside and outside the fence) is a demonstration garden containing several of the same plants found in the research beds, the difference being that these plants received regular maintenance and watering. As with the Rucker gardens, plants at the tower are clearly labeled for easy self-identification.
A team of Collin County Master Gardeners maintains the gardens year around. Our work sessions occur on most Thursday mornings. We invite each of you to come see the Prosper Gardens for yourselves.
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