Biloxi's Martha Boyce is a late bloomer in gardening

Martha Boyce of Biloxi encourages seniors to become more active in gardening.
Martha Boyce of Biloxi encourages seniors to become more active in gardening.

BILOXI -- Martha Boyce of Biloxi is passionate about gardening. And at age 70, Boyce said gardening has become a large part of her life.

"Gardening is now my passion and as a senior, it keeps me going," she said. "I am 70 and in spite of all my health issues, I feel so empowered working in my garden."

Boyce is also a proponent of the public garden in Hiller Park and she is hoping that other seniors will join her in contributing to the project's success.

"This is our first public garden, and we want it to do well and that's why I want to encourage other seniors to join me in helping with the Hiller Park garden," she said.

The month of April holds two days that Boyce said are good opportunities to get involved with gardening -- Earth Day, which is April 22, and Arbor Day, April 29.

"I always loved and celebrated all holidays throughout my life, but not till I reached the 'sassy senior season of life' did I come to recognize and enjoy these occasions," Boyce said. "As the founder and executive director of the nonprofit Mississippi Renaissance Garden Foundation and Horticulture for Humanity, I not only recognize these holidays, but curate events to inspire others of all ages and abilities to find out the benefits and pleasures of the Earth."

She said she hopes other area seniors will celebrate this year's Earth Day.

Earth Day is "April 22 and is an annual day on which events are held worldwide to demonstrate support for environmental protection," Boyce said. "It is an amazing time to discover the powers in the flowers and the treasures of the trees because the Earth was one of the first gifts given to mankind, and it is up to all of us to show continuing gratitude, respect and care for the Earth and ensure it continues to exist and provide its benefits to both mankind and nature."

Although some members of the senior population may be experiencing some health issues, Boyce said they can still make a difference at the Hiller Park garden.

She will host a planting event Saturday to help celebrate Earth Day.

"We invite all seniors as well as others on the coast to join us in celebrating Earth Day at Hiller Park Renaissance Garden by encouraging children to show their gratitude, respect and support for the Earth by planting a garden," she said.

The ceremony starts at 9 a.m.

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