Yesterday Calloway’s Nursery, a local garden center, had a day-long event. Speakers were scheduled from 9 — 5. That’s a lot of gardening info. Who would go to such a thing all day long? Not me.
I got there just before noon.
It’s spring in Texas, which means it’s windy as all get-out, but the event was inside so we only had to deal with the occasional banging of a door. I missed the first three sessions, but Vikki and I arrived in time to get good seats for the bulb hunter’s presentation.
Bulb hunter guy was Chris Wiesinger, founder of The Southern Bulb Company. He was very interesting–it reminded me of the time in junior high my friend Linda and I found an abandoned homestead that had a garden full of blooming flowers. It was like our own real-life Secret Garden…until other people found it and started digging up the flowers to take home. Now, I get that. At the time, I was horrified.
Chris finds similar gardens, then (after obtaining permission from the owners) digs up the bulbs, propagates them, and sells them. The theory being, if they thrive all by themselves with no help from anyone, they should do well in our flower beds. And I almost bought this one…
…until a later speaker’s presentation persuaded me it was the wrong color for my garden.
We also heard from Mariana Greene, the Garden Editor for the Dallas Morning News, who brought her friend Buttercup:
He clucked companionably around the crowd during her talk, occasionally letting out a hoarse little cock-a-doodle.
By this time Rosemary had arrived and it was time for lunch.
Some people tailgate at sporting events; my crowd tailgates at garden seminars. That’s sparking cider, btw, we weren’t sure how Calloway’s would feel about alcohol on the premises. We also had chicken salad on flatbread, veggie skewers, fruit, and assorted chocolate.
Well-fed and happy, we wandered back in the store to learn about putting color in our gardens. Wayne Pianta showed us many wonderful plants…the only problem is deciding which ones to use!
Next we were vastly entertained by Ian Cooke, who talked about garden personality. (Mine is “rustic cottage” though I like to think of it as “Hill Country Chic.”) You can take a little quiz to find your garden personality here: http://www.monrovia.com/design-inspiration/style-quiz.php
After that we got tips on perennials (buy ’em once and they keep coming back–love that) from Gabrielle Babcock and had just enough time to browse the blooms in the store before closing time.
It was a fun day. I came away with all kinds of tips, potential plants to purchase, and the encouraging knowledge that I was doing some things right. Not a bad way to spend a Saturday! Next time I might even get there for the morning sessions.