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Archives for February 2018

Big changes: Arkansas Flower and Garden Show moves to State …

The 27th annual Arkansas Flower and Garden Show brings big changes. Instead of the last weekend in February, this year the show is on the first weekend in March, and for the first time, it won’t be in downtown Little Rock.

The gardener’s oasis, a breath of spring at the end of winter, is moving to the Arkansas State Fairgrounds.

Gates will open at 9 a.m. March 2, a Friday. Hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. that Friday and Saturday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, March 4.

Four buildings will be transformed:

The main gardens and exhibits will be divided among the Hall of Industry and Barton Coliseum, with the Arkansas Federation of Garden Clubs’ standard flower show taking over the Arts and Crafts Building. Along with beautiful flowers and designs and horticulture competitions, the 30-minute How-To programs will also be in the Arts and Crafts Building with a full lineup of topics all three days.

The Farm and Ranch Building will house the main hour-long speakers March 2 and 3, and be the home of special hands-on children’s activities March 4.

Tickets will cost $10 per person as you enter the fairgrounds at 2600 Howard St. (children 12 and under enter for free). Once inside the gates there is plenty of free parking, and you are free to roam from building to building all day.

No more driving around searching for parking.

If you buy large items, or you simply want to store what you buy, the Hall of Industry and the coliseum will have a parcel pickup service where you can drive up to the door to pick up your purchases before you leave for the day.

WHAT’S ON OFFER

The Arkansas Flower and Garden Show is the largest gardening event in Arkansas each year. This is the place to go to look at great garden designs, buy the latest plants and gardening gadgets and get your questions answered.

The University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture Cooperative Extension Service always has a large display, this year in the Hall of Industry. Experts will be available to answer your gardening questions, talk about how to be a beekeeper, teach about backyard chickens and rabbits, and talk about pest problems from diseases and insects to animals.

Plant diagnosticians will be on hand to identify diseases and insects, so take them some sample leaves or twigs from your troubled plants.

Learn how to be a Master Gardener. Taste fabulous food prepared by Family and Consumer Science agents.

Arkansas 4-H will be on hand all three days with activities for the young or young at heart.

One of the highlights of the show is the landscaped garden displays. Presenters include Antique Brick Outdoors/Better Lawns and Gardens; Grand Designs; Lopez Landscaping; Ozark Folk Center State Park; River Valley Horticultural Products with Turf Masters Inc. and Russell Wiggs Landscape Inc.; and Roseberry Landscape Services.

Visitors can walk through their designs to look for ideas that could apply to their home landscapes, and ask questions about the plants used and why.

LANDSCAPE OLYMPICS

For the second year, there will be a live Landscape Challenge. Four landscapers will face off in Barton Coliseum beginning at 10 a.m. May 2.

Each landscaper will have four hours to create a front landscape for a house facade.

Competitors include Botanica Gardens, Eminent Terrain, Hocott’s Garden Center and Little Rock Land Design.

You can duck in to watch the action live, coming and going to check on their progress. As they work, interviews will be ongoing with the various designers on how they chose their plants, and tips will be offered on how to create your own personal landscape. The final results will stay up for the entire show.

Friday and Saturday in the Farm and Ranch Building some big-name speakers will teach you about everything including blackberries, drought-tolerant plants, vegetables, annuals, perennials and landscape problem solving. A Friday afternoon session on how not to be a “garden snob” is sure to entertain.

BENEFITING BEAUTY

The Arkansas Flower and Garden Show was begun in 1992 to promote horticulture and sound gardening practices, and help to beautify the state of Arkansas. In addition to all the informative opportunities the weekend brings, the effort to promote education doesn’t stop when the doors close and the vendors break down their displays.

Every year, proceeds from the show provide college scholarships to students attending a state institution of higher learning and majoring in horticulture or related fields. The show has awarded more than $60,000 in the past 10 years.

Greening of Arkansas grants are another way the show benefits the state. More than $95,000 has been awarded to communities across the state for beautification projects since 2006. Grant applications are opened in late summer, with grants up to $2,500 awarded the following spring to nonprofit and civic groups for beautification projects on public land.

More details are at argardenshow.org.

Janet B. Carson is a horticulture specialist for the University of Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service.

HomeStyle on 02/17/2018

Article source: http://www.arkansasonline.com/news/2018/feb/17/big-changes-20180217/

Despite snow, crowds turn out for Home Show

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Article source: http://wcfcourier.com/news/local/despite-snow-crowds-turn-out-for-home-show/article_4e6df6ac-3808-50b0-91b0-9e25b7a1bdbc.html

Big changes: Arkansas Flower and Garden Show moves to State Fairgrounds — and into March

The 27th annual Arkansas Flower and Garden Show brings big changes. Instead of the last weekend in February, this year the show is on the first weekend in March, and for the first time, it won’t be in downtown Little Rock.

The gardener’s oasis, a breath of spring at the end of winter, is moving to the Arkansas State Fairgrounds.

Gates will open at 9 a.m. March 2, a Friday. Hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. that Friday and Saturday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, March 4.

Four buildings will be transformed:

The main gardens and exhibits will be divided among the Hall of Industry and Barton Coliseum, with the Arkansas Federation of Garden Clubs’ standard flower show taking over the Arts and Crafts Building. Along with beautiful flowers and designs and horticulture competitions, the 30-minute How-To programs will also be in the Arts and Crafts Building with a full lineup of topics all three days.

The Farm and Ranch Building will house the main hour-long speakers March 2 and 3, and be the home of special hands-on children’s activities March 4.

Tickets will cost $10 per person as you enter the fairgrounds at 2600 Howard St. (children 12 and under enter for free). Once inside the gates there is plenty of free parking, and you are free to roam from building to building all day.

No more driving around searching for parking.

If you buy large items, or you simply want to store what you buy, the Hall of Industry and the coliseum will have a parcel pickup service where you can drive up to the door to pick up your purchases before you leave for the day.

WHAT’S ON OFFER

The Arkansas Flower and Garden Show is the largest gardening event in Arkansas each year. This is the place to go to look at great garden designs, buy the latest plants and gardening gadgets and get your questions answered.

The University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture Cooperative Extension Service always has a large display, this year in the Hall of Industry. Experts will be available to answer your gardening questions, talk about how to be a beekeeper, teach about backyard chickens and rabbits, and talk about pest problems from diseases and insects to animals.

Plant diagnosticians will be on hand to identify diseases and insects, so take them some sample leaves or twigs from your troubled plants.

Learn how to be a Master Gardener. Taste fabulous food prepared by Family and Consumer Science agents.

Arkansas 4-H will be on hand all three days with activities for the young or young at heart.

One of the highlights of the show is the landscaped garden displays. Presenters include Antique Brick Outdoors/Better Lawns and Gardens; Grand Designs; Lopez Landscaping; Ozark Folk Center State Park; River Valley Horticultural Products with Turf Masters Inc. and Russell Wiggs Landscape Inc.; and Roseberry Landscape Services.

Visitors can walk through their designs to look for ideas that could apply to their home landscapes, and ask questions about the plants used and why.

LANDSCAPE OLYMPICS

For the second year, there will be a live Landscape Challenge. Four landscapers will face off in Barton Coliseum beginning at 10 a.m. May 2.

Each landscaper will have four hours to create a front landscape for a house facade.

Competitors include Botanica Gardens, Eminent Terrain, Hocott’s Garden Center and Little Rock Land Design.

You can duck in to watch the action live, coming and going to check on their progress. As they work, interviews will be ongoing with the various designers on how they chose their plants, and tips will be offered on how to create your own personal landscape. The final results will stay up for the entire show.

Friday and Saturday in the Farm and Ranch Building some big-name speakers will teach you about everything including blackberries, drought-tolerant plants, vegetables, annuals, perennials and landscape problem solving. A Friday afternoon session on how not to be a “garden snob” is sure to entertain.

BENEFITING BEAUTY

The Arkansas Flower and Garden Show was begun in 1992 to promote horticulture and sound gardening practices, and help to beautify the state of Arkansas. In addition to all the informative opportunities the weekend brings, the effort to promote education doesn’t stop when the doors close and the vendors break down their displays.

Every year, proceeds from the show provide college scholarships to students attending a state institution of higher learning and majoring in horticulture or related fields. The show has awarded more than $60,000 in the past 10 years.

Greening of Arkansas grants are another way the show benefits the state. More than $95,000 has been awarded to communities across the state for beautification projects since 2006. Grant applications are opened in late summer, with grants up to $2,500 awarded the following spring to nonprofit and civic groups for beautification projects on public land.

More details are at argardenshow.org.

Janet B. Carson is a horticulture specialist for the University of Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service.

HomeStyle on 02/17/2018

Article source: http://www.arkansasonline.com/news/2018/feb/17/big-changes-20180217/

Landscapers create gardens based on children’s books for annual show

Central Ohio landscapers spent last week transforming 10 beloved children’s books into gardens for the Dispatch Spring Home Garden Show, which opened on Saturday at the Ohio Expo Center.

But while some tales such as “Hansel and Gretel” translated easily into garden designs, others proved trickier. Just what’s a landscaper to do with the preschoolers’ book “Chicka Chicka Boom Boom,” which contains only one main image — a coconut tree?

“You think of ‘Chicka Chicka Boom Boom’ and ‘Pete the Cat,’ there’s definitely a challenge in terms of what the stories portray,” said Jacob Basnett, an owner of Landscape Design Solutions. As the Columbus Landscape Association’s chairman of this year’s show, he worked with the Columbus Metropolitan Library to select the books.

Also as chairman, Basnett got first choice of the books. He went straight for “The Secret Garden,” the 1911 tale about a girl who discovers the healing power of a hidden garden.

To illustrate the book, Basnett’s crew hid a lush flower garden, complete with swing, behind a 6-foot wall.

PHOTOS: Spring Home Garden Show

For “Chicka Chicka Boom Boom,” Five Seasons Landscape designer Mike Mouton planted some palm trees and built a fountain out of dozens of books covered in clear sealant.

Hedge Landscape got last pick of the books, but that was fine with Steven Maravich, the firm’s landscape architect. He had his heart set on the Dr. Seuss book “The Lorax,” which all other landscape firms bypassed.

“I was sure someone else would take ‘The Lorax,’ ” Maravich said. “I was so excited when I got to pick it. I watched ‘The Lorax’ with my son and listened a lot to the audio book. He’s only 5, but I think he can recite every word of the book.”

Hedge’s display includes an enormous book along with some of the publication’s most striking images, such as “truffula trees” and “humming fish.”

Other landscapers built their displays around core images in their books — a raft in “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn,” a witch’s cottage in “Hansel and Gretel” and a giant turtle in “The Tortoise and the Hare” — but Warwick’s Landscaping owner Terry Killilea resisted one idea for his “Charlotte’s Web” garden.

“One of my workers has a tarantula. He said, ‘All you have to do is tie a string around his leg and he’ll be fine,’ ” Killilea said. “Can you imagine? I said, ‘There will be no live animals here.'”

jweiker@dispatch.com

@jimweiker

Article source: http://www.dispatch.com/entertainmentlife/20180218/landscapers-create-gardens-based-on-childrens-books-for-annual-show

Grow more food and save money with these 8 tips – Tribune

Updated 8 hours ago

Some people have the luxury of a big gardening budget, but lots of us don’t. Pinching pennies in the garden is a great way to make a limited gardening budget stretch even further. Thankfully, there are lots of ways to save money while still growing a gorgeous garden.

Here are my eight favorite ways to keep a few bucks in your back pocket and grow more food, flowers, and foliage than ever before.

1. Find a seed partner. The cost of seeds always seems to be on the rise. Having a seed partner to share with can help defray this cost. Try to find a seed partner who’s interested in growing the same things you are, then agree to split the cost of the seeds and divide the contents of each seed packet in half. Shipping charges can be divided, too. Most gardeners don’t need 25 seeds of the same tomato variety anyway.

2. Host a plant swap. Gardeners are a generous bunch. If you have friends, family, coworkers, and neighbors who garden, why not host a plant swap? Ask everyone to bring 5-10 labeled plants to the swap to exchange for “new” plants from another participant. Some of the best plants in my garden originated from a plant swap. One word of warning, however: be sure to tell your guests not to bring any invasive plants to the swap. Many a garden as been unknowingly infested with goutweed via a plant swap!

3. Learn how to make more plants. Plant propagation is fun, and it’s a great way to get more plants for free. Unlike animals, each cell in a plant contains all the genetic information necessary for the generation of a whole new plant. This means you can take a stem, root, or leaf cutting of many different annuals, perennials, herbs, and vegetables, and grow a whole new plant. A quick online search or a trip to the library will reveal step-by-step instructions on how to take plant cuttings and which plants are the best ones to start with.

In addition to starting new plants from cuttings, you can also propagate many perennials by crown division. This means digging up and separating the clump with a shovel to make two or more smaller plants from one large one. Plus, regular dividing keeps most perennials healthy.

4. Recycle and repurpose. Instead of buying fancy new planters, why not recycle an old galvanized wash tub or a metal kitchen colander into a unique garden container? If an object holds soil and you can put a drainage hole into the bottom of it, it makes a great planter! Be creative.

5. Make your own plant trellises. Don’t invest in an expensive trellis or plant cage, if you can make it yourself. There are scores of building plans for wooden tomato cages, arbors, pergolas and even bean towers in woodworking books and online. You can also take many old household objects and use them as plant supports. I’ve seen pole beans growing up the bare wire springs of an old mattress frame, the spokes of an old patio umbrella made into a tee pee for morning glory vines, and an ancient wooden ladder providing structure for climbing winter squash plants. The sky’s the limit.

6. Mix up your own potting soil. If you grow a lot of plants in containers, you know how expensive potting soil can be. You should replace 100 percent of the potting soil in your containers every year to prevent the spread of disease and add a full set of nutrients to the container prior to planting. I save a lot of money in the garden by mixing up my own potting soil instead of buying bag after bag of commercial mix. Here’s the recipe I use for my container-grown annuals and veggies: 6 gallons sphagnum peat moss (or coir fiber), 4 12 gallons vermiculite or perlite, 6 gallons of finely screened compost, 1 12 cups of organic granular fertilizer, and 14 cup pulverized lime. I blend all this together in my wheelbarrow with a shovel for several minutes before filling my pots with the mix.

7. Use free arborist chips for mulch. For tree and shrub beds, you can save a lot of money by using free wood chips from a local arborist, instead of buying shredded bark by the bag or in bulk from a local landscape supply yard. I don’t recommend using these fresh wood chips on vegetable or flower beds as they can cause nutritional issues, but for trees and shrubs, there’s no better mulch out there — and most arborists are happy to deliver a load to your driveway instead of paying to take it to a composting center. You can even get an app for your smart phone called ChipDrop that connects you with arborists looking to unload wood chips.

8. Set up a recycled rain barrel. My final money-saving tip for gardeners is to set up a recycled rain barrel. Check with your municipality first to make sure rain barrels are legal where you live. Then, seek out a used, food-grade, recycled 30 or 55 gallon drum from a local food manufacturing facility or rainbarrelspa.com. Yes, you can purchase commercial rain barrels, but these can cost big bucks. Food-grade drums work great and you can even get attachments to convert these drums to rain barrels by adding a faucet and downspout diverter (try gardenwatersaver.com or rainreserve.com).

Horticulturist Jessica Walliser co-hosts “The Organic Gardeners” at 7 a.m. Sundays on KDKA Radio with Doug Oster. She is the author of several gardening books, including “Attracting Beneficial Bugs to Your Garden,” “Good Bug, Bad Bug,” and her newest title, “Container Gardening Complete.” Her website is jessicawalliser.com. Send your gardening or landscaping questions to tribliving@tribweb.com or The Good Earth, 622 Cabin Hill Drive, Greensburg, PA 15601.

Article source: http://triblive.com/lifestyles/jessicawalliser/13295367-74/grow-more-food-and-save-money-with-these-8-tips

This week’s gardening tips: change the color of hydrangeas and control thrips

How to change the color of hydrangeas: In areas with alkaline soils, like the south shore, hydrangeas tend to produce flowers that are pink or pinkish-lavender. For blue-flowered hydrangeas, add aluminum sulfate to the soil around your bushes now. In areas of the state with acid soils, hydrangeas tend to produce blue flowers. If you want pink flowers, apply lime to the soil around your plants now. It may take several years of applications to cause complete color change. Flower buds are already present, so do not prune at this time.

Plant gladiolus corms through March: Plant groups of corms every two weeks during the planting season to extend the display of flowers.

Article source: http://www.nola.com/homegarden/index.ssf/2018/02/this_weeks_gardening_tips_plan_11.html

Garden docs: Tips and tricks for sowing seeds – Press Democrat

Patti S. of Petaluma asks: Is it OK to spread ashes from the fireplace on the beds and borders in my garden where I plant annuals every year, and where I have established perennials? We use the fireplace quite often and accumulate quite a bit of ash. We don’t want to throw it in the garbage if it can be used as a fertilizer.

Many gardeners add fireplace ash to their garden. If you sprinkle the ashes on top of the ground, especially if it is dry, they will be gone with the first good wind. If rain is predicted then go ahead and sprinkle away! If the soil is damp from previous rains, then sprinkle the ashes on lightly so they soak up some of the moisture and stay put.

The best time to apply ash is in the spring or fall, when you can work it into the top 6 inches of the soil. Be mindful of how much you’re using. Wood ashes do not contain any nitrogen, just a little bit of phosphorus and a good amount of potassium.

If you overdo it on the ashes, you will send your soil pH through the roof, and then it will take a long time to get it back to normal (around 6.5-7.0). Do a test on your soil first, to determine the pH level before adding any ash. A light dusting is fine and won’t do any harm. In fact, you could save some ashes and lightly dust your vegetable plants to keep insects at bay. Save ash in a metal garbage can with a lid in a covered area for use later in the year.

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Kathy R. of Santa Rosa asks: I am starting eggplant, pepper and tomato seeds indoors. My friend told me I should use warm water to water them. Does it matter if the water is warm or cold?

If you can keep the soil temperature at around 75 degrees or warmer, your vegetable seeds will germinate faster than if you continually use cold water.

If you have the trays on heating mats, the soil will warm up sooner, quickly seed germination. But if you have them in a cool room with no heating mats and you water them with cold water, it will delay germination. So consider watering with warm water.

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Robert H. of Windsor asks: I sowed a mix of legume seeds in the fall as a cover crop. When is the best time to turn the plants into the soil for maximum benefit?

If you planted the legumes as a cover crop for the nitrogen you should incorporate the plants into the soil when the nitrogen is at its peak, which is about the time they start to flower. So keep a watchful eye. The smaller you can chop up the plants, the faster it will break down in the soil and turn into organic matter.

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Jill O. of Sebastopol asks: I don’t have very many seeds of this particular tomato variety that my grandmother gave me, so I want to be careful when sowing. What can I do to ensure success?

If you can’t afford to lose a single seed, then try sprouting them in-between damp paper towels instead of starting them in soil. Take a moist paper towel and carefully space each seed on top of the towel. Put another moist paper towel on top of them and pat it down. Slide the whole thing into a Ziploc plastic bag and lightly flatten it down to take out any air pockets. Place it in a warm place where the temperature is about 75 degrees and not in direct sunlight. Take a peak every so often to see if they are starting to sprout.

Article source: http://www.pressdemocrat.com/lifestyle/7990044-181/garden-docs-tips-and-tricks

Garden Tips: Cold Weather Damage To Plants? – Tri

The recent cold weather that followed our late-winter, record-breaking warm spell has gardeners anxious about potential damage to their plants. Before getting too stressed, let us talk a little about winter hardiness.

As the days become shorter and the weather starts to cool in late summer, the growth of woody plants slows to a stop and they gradually acclimate or become ready for winter’s cold temperatures. Acclimation is a physiological process that takes place within plant tissues. As temperatures decline, the process continues until a plant achieves its full dormancy and maximum hardiness in mid-winter. Due to their genetically dictated tolerance to cold, different species and even varieties of plants vary in their maximum potential hardiness.

Periods of warm weather during winter can cause a plant to de-acclimate, making it more vulnerable to damage from severely cold temperatures. However, plants can re-acclimate and reclaim their hardy condition if the decline in cold temperatures is gradual.

Near the end of winter when the days start to lengthen and temperatures start to rise, plants begin the process of de-acclimating and start losing their tolerance to freezing temperatures. If unseasonably warm weather occurs during late winter, plants will become increasingly less hardy and more vulnerable to freeze damage. While they can reclaim some cold hardiness with cooler weather, they will not revert to their full mid-winter hardiness.

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Our mild winter and recent warm spell appear to have area gardeners and plants ready for spring. How can we protect plants with swelling buds that seem ready to open? Here are a few things that might help.

▪ Check the soil for moisture. One gardener told me this week that the soil beneath the evergreen hedge that divides her yard and the neighbor’s is bone dry. I recommend watering, even though it means getting a hose out to do the job. Dr. Linda Chalker-Scott, WSU Extension horticulturist, points out that while the top of your tree and shrub may be dormant, the roots are not dormant. She adds that a moist soil provides better insulation from cold temperatures than dry soil does and can help protect the smaller roots from damage by cold temperatures.

While not related to cold weather concerns, keeping soil moist when it is not frozen is important to overall plant health. Drought conditions lead to the death of fine roots and impair the plant’s ability to take up water and nutrients to support top growth in the spring.

▪ On frosty nights, small plants or flowering perennials that have started to grow can be covered at dusk with a blanket or burlap to hold in heat radiating from the soil. The fabric should completely cover the plants down to the ground. Any openings will let heat escape. A frame or some type of support can help keep a heavy blanket from damaging plants. One or more five gallon buckets filled with hot water placed underneath the covering will provide additional heat. Remove any coverings in the morning after it warms up.

Some spring flowering bulbs are already peeking out of the soil. Depending on the situation, cover these at night with a blanket or use inverted five-gallon buckets to cover individual plants or clumps. Remove them during the day. This can be tedious if your bulbs get a very early start, so an alternative is to cover them with some extra wood chips, shredded bark or compost mulch that will need to be removed when spring arrives.

Hopefully, our plants will be OK.

Marianne C. Ophardt is a retired horticulturist for Washington State University Benton County Extension.

Article source: http://www.tri-cityherald.com/living/home-garden/marianne-ophardt/article200416004.html

5 garden tips for this week, Feb. 17-23



1 Harvest time: Fall-planted carrots ought to be at their peak for harvesting now. Warm weather makes leafy vegetables bolt (go to seed), so pick lettuces, cabbages and spinach as soon as they are ready unless we get a significant dip in temperatures for several weeks. If you planted onion sets an inch apart, harvest green onions as needed, leaving one every 4 inches to develop into globes. Continue picking peas, because the more you pick, the longer they will keep producing.

2 Ready to eat: Snails will soon be awakening with hearty appetites. They love to chomp away on tender spring growth and can seriously shred foliage and damage developing flowers and fruits over night. Apply snail bait regularly, either the meal or granule form. And replenish it every 10 days or so to stop newly emerging hatchlings, as well as travelers that slither in from elsewhere in the neighborhood. Or, look up recipes for escargot on the internet and get back at them that way.

3 Prep work: Prepare the garden area for summer vegetables. Remove weeds and debris. Loosen soil and add organic matter, tilling it in as deeply as possible. Aged, composted steer manure works great in the garden.

4 Tree care: To help prevent borers from attacking your deciduous fruit trees, paint exposed trunks, large branches, limbs and larger cuts with interior latex paint — preferably off-white matte — diluted half and half with water. Doing this every year could save your trees from these devastating beasts.

5 Sharpen the clippers: Cut back leggy fuchsias the latter part of February. Leave at least two or three healthy leaf buds on each branch. Frequently pinch the tips of the branches during the spring and summer to force side growth, making the fuchsia bushier, and pick off flowers as they fade to promote more blooming. While you are in the garden with your clippers, be sure to prune your ginger, cannas, asparagus ferns, ivy and pyracantha, too.

— Jack E. Christensen

Article source: http://www.santacruzsentinel.com/article/NE/20180216/FEATURES/180219762

Big changes – Arkansas Democrat-Gazette

The 27th annual Arkansas Flower and Garden Show brings big changes. Instead of the last weekend in February, this year the show is on the first weekend in March, and for the first time, it won’t be in downtown Little Rock.

The gardener’s oasis, a breath of spring at the end of winter, is moving to the Arkansas State Fairgrounds.

Gates will open at 9 a.m. March 2, a Friday. Hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. that Friday and Saturday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, March 4.

Four buildings will be transformed:

The main gardens and exhibits will be divided among the Hall of Industry and Barton Coliseum, with the Arkansas Federation of Garden Clubs’ standard flower show taking over the Arts and Crafts Building. Along with beautiful flowers and designs and horticulture competitions, the 30-minute How-To programs will also be in the Arts and Crafts Building with a full lineup of topics all three days.

The Farm and Ranch Building will house the main hour-long speakers March 2 and 3, and be the home of special hands-on children’s activities March 4.

Tickets will cost $10 per person as you enter the fairgrounds at 2600 Howard St. (children 12 and under enter for free). Once inside the gates there is plenty of free parking, and you are free to roam from building to building all day.

No more driving around searching for parking.

If you buy large items, or you simply want to store what you buy, the Hall of Industry and the coliseum will have a parcel pickup service where you can drive up to the door to pick up your purchases before you leave for the day.

WHAT’S ON OFFER

The Arkansas Flower and Garden Show is the largest gardening event in Arkansas each year. This is the place to go to look at great garden designs, buy the latest plants and gardening gadgets and get your questions answered.

The University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture Cooperative Extension Service always has a large display, this year in the Hall of Industry. Experts will be available to answer your gardening questions, talk about how to be a beekeeper, teach about backyard chickens and rabbits, and talk about pest problems from diseases and insects to animals.

Plant diagnosticians will be on hand to identify diseases and insects, so take them some sample leaves or twigs from your troubled plants.

Learn how to be a Master Gardener. Taste fabulous food prepared by Family and Consumer Science agents.

Arkansas 4-H will be on hand all three days with activities for the young or young at heart.

One of the highlights of the show is the landscaped garden displays. Presenters include Antique Brick Outdoors/Better Lawns and Gardens; Grand Designs; Lopez Landscaping; Ozark Folk Center State Park; River Valley Horticultural Products with Turf Masters Inc. and Russell Wiggs Landscape Inc.; and Roseberry Landscape Services.

Visitors can walk through their designs to look for ideas that could apply to their home landscapes, and ask questions about the plants used and why.

LANDSCAPE OLYMPICS

For the second year, there will be a live Landscape Challenge. Four landscapers will face off in Barton Coliseum beginning at 10 a.m. May 2.

Each landscaper will have four hours to create a front landscape for a house facade.

Competitors include Botanica Gardens, Eminent Terrain, Hocott’s Garden Center and Little Rock Land Design.

You can duck in to watch the action live, coming and going to check on their progress. As they work, interviews will be ongoing with the various designers on how they chose their plants, and tips will be offered on how to create your own personal landscape. The final results will stay up for the entire show.

Friday and Saturday in the Farm and Ranch Building some big-name speakers will teach you about everything including blackberries, drought-tolerant plants, vegetables, annuals, perennials and landscape problem solving. A Friday afternoon session on how not to be a “garden snob” is sure to entertain.

BENEFITING BEAUTY

The Arkansas Flower and Garden Show was begun in 1992 to promote horticulture and sound gardening practices, and help to beautify the state of Arkansas. In addition to all the informative opportunities the weekend brings, the effort to promote education doesn’t stop when the doors close and the vendors break down their displays.

Every year, proceeds from the show provide college scholarships to students attending a state institution of higher learning and majoring in horticulture or related fields. The show has awarded more than $60,000 in the past 10 years.

Greening of Arkansas grants are another way the show benefits the state. More than $95,000 has been awarded to communities across the state for beautification projects since 2006. Grant applications are opened in late summer, with grants up to $2,500 awarded the following spring to nonprofit and civic groups for beautification projects on public land.

More details are at argardenshow.org.

Janet B. Carson is a horticulture specialist for the University of Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service.

HomeStyle on 02/17/2018

Article source: http://www.arkansasonline.com/news/2018/feb/17/big-changes-20180217/