A gift from the heart
The Master Gardener Program, part of WSU Extension, will greatly benefit from the Colemans’ generosity.
“The Master Gardener program has minimal funding from the state,” said Mike Gaffney, acting director of WSU Extension. “It owes its success over the years to the efforts of volunteers and donations like this.”
He said the Colemans’ donation will create opportunities for the program that have never been available before anywhere in the state.
“This is a unique opportunity for events, training, and garden development,” Gaffney said. “We have other demonstration gardens that are smaller. This is a whole different scale for the Master Gardener program. It will open up some amazing opportunities for future gardeners.”
The Colemans bought the land 25 years ago, after it had been clear-cut. They have built every structure themselves, and only just put it on the electrical grid about three years ago. They rarely need to tap into the grid, running everything off solar panels, Drew said.
He even milled all the wood for the house in his workshop. Everything on the property is a labor of love.
Fusa, a native of Japan, is a ceramics artist. She has her own workshop with a kiln and proudly displays her creations around their house.
“We both have lots of hobbies,” said Drew, who still works as a biotechnology facilities consultant. “We’ll never finish all the projects we have going on, or the plans we have for the property. But that’s half the fun. We love working on it.”
The couple, who met when they were both judo instructors, say that their property is home to eagles, cougars, deer, bobcats, and other wildlife.
“We want someone who will care for this land after we’re gone,” Fusa said. “We know the Master Gardeners will take great care with it.”