Seminars

2017 Vermont Flower Show Seminar Schedule

PLEASE check back prior to the event for any changes or updates.

You can download a copy of the seminar schedule at the bottom of this page.

Friday – March 3, 2017

10:30 AM – Room A

The Movable Feast: Small Space Portable Gardening— Charlie Nardozzi, www.GardeningwithCharlie.com With many gardeners downsizing their gardens or wanting to garden but not having a permanent space to build a garden, small and portable are keys to gardening success and happiness. In this talk Charlie will cover all the ways you can garden in small spaces from raised beds, containers, vertical gardens, hanging planters and even indoor growing. For those gardeners on the move, Charlie will pay particular attention to growing plants that are easy to transplant and move and structures that can also come with you. Free Velcro Plant Ties will be given

10:30 AM – Room B

Gardens of the Hudson Valley—Leonard Perry, Horticulturist-in-Residence, King’s Garden, Fort Ticonderoga– Close-by are some beautiful and diverse gardens in the Hudson Valley of New York state. Whether you’re thinking about short summer vacations or just inspiration, this presentation will illustrate several of the most known and worth a visit. Starting our virtual tour with the historic King’s Garden at Fort Ticonderoga, you’ll see Bellefield, Locust Grove, Stonecrop, the natural Asian-inspired Innisfree, the formal classical Italian Weathersfield, ending with the Highline in New York City. Learn, too, about upcoming garden tours for this year.


12:00 noon – Room A

Landscaping for the Storm: Rain Gardens and Rain Barrels Rebecca Tharp, Lake Champlain Sea Grant (LCSG), University of Vermont — Make the most of downpours on your property, and in your garden, while protecting water quality in nearby streams and lakes. Learn how simple (and inexpensive) tools, like rain barrels, can serve to store clean rain water for garden irrigation during periods of drought. Get design tips for creating beautiful and functional rain gardens that capture and use excess runoff – and leave with a do-it-yourself guide to make your ideas a reality.

12:00 noon – Room B

Native Trees and Shrubs for a Managed Landscape—Mark Starrett, Dept. of Plant and Soil Science, UVM— There are many trees and shrubs available in local garden centers and nurseries but ever wonder which of them is native?  This presentation will help you learn about those that are from this region and also showcase a few special selections of each that will make you seek them out for your own yard.


1:30 PM – Room A

Diagnosing Bugs and Blights, or What I Do Instead of a Summer Vacation!– Ann Hazelrigg, UVM Extension; www.uvm.edu/-entlab/— The director of the UVM Plant Diagnostic Clinic, with years of experience dealing with all kind of problems on all kinds of plants, will talk about some of the problems she saw in the field, gardens and landscapes last summer and what new and “exciting” problems are on the horizon.

1:30 PM – Room B

Go Native: An Introduction to Gardening with Native Plants—Emily DeBolt, Fiddlehead Creek Native Plant Nursery, Fort Ann, NY— Join Emily DeBolt, owner of this native plant nursery, to learn about the benefits and beauty of gardening with native plants. Find out which plants are great for monarchs and other pollinators and which plants can grow in tough sites such as clay soils or dry shade.  Emily will introduce you to many of the native plants available for gardening, the benefits of gardening with natives, and will share some of her favorite natives from her own gardens.


3:00 PM – Room A

So You Want To Help Mother Nature?–Marijke Niles, Marijke’s Perennial Gardens Plus, Starksboro— www.perennialgardensplus.com. – We can all give Mother Nature a hand in maintaining or recreating a balance. Marijke will talk about simple additions to your gardens, how to improve water drainage, how to make fall cleanup much easier. You also can help the bees, the birds and the butterflies thrive by supplying other easy to provide needs other than nectar plants.

3:00 PM – Room B

Pests and Diseases: Detection, Diagnoses, and Deterrence – Tim Schmalz, Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets — Join Tim to discuss the major pests and diseases, including new ones, that are plaguing our fruits, vegetables, flowers, trees and shrubs.   Learn about the best way to identify problems, best practices to use to avoid them, and solutions including conventional, organic, biological and non-chemical.


4:30 PM – Room A

The Buzz on Designing Pollinator Friendly Landscapes— Annie White, Landscape Designer/Owner, Nectar Landscape Design Studio— This seminar will explore the fascinating ways in which plants and pollinators interact in Vermont landscapes—including our home gardens—and how we can happily coexist with all the buzz. Whether you have a tiny backyard or a sprawling farm, you will learn useful tips for creating and maintaining beautiful landscapes that also attract and support healthy bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds.

4:30 PM – Room B

Hard Cider: Rediscovering the Roots of the Trendiest Drink on the Menu— Terry Bradshaw, UVM Plant and Soil Science Department– In this talk, Dr. Bradshaw will discuss the history of hard cider making, simple steps to making your own cider, and the impact of the growth in cider on the Vermont apple industry. He knows the subject well, having made cider for over 20 years, operated a commercial cider mill, and maintained a small home orchard while overseeing the UVM Horticulture Research and Education Center. Since joining the UVM faculty in 2014, he has directed the apple research program with several projects designed to increase the sales, quality,  and profitability of Vermont apples grown for cideries.


Saturday – March 4, 2017

10:30 AM – Rooms A & B – KEYNOTE ADDRESS

Keynote: Creating Stunning Plant Communities that Stand the Test of TimeClaudia West, Ecological Sales Manager, North Creek Nurseries, Landenberg, PA — Plants are the foundation of healthy ecosystems and they bring beauty and joy to our lives. But great plants alone don’t automatically create lasting ecological benefits in our gardens. Claudia West, ecological sales manager at North Creek Nurseries, premier wholesale perennial grower in Landenberg, Pennsylvania,  talks about spectacular perennials and grasses and how to use them in stable, layered, natural combinations that increase the ornamental, functional, and ecological value of your landscape. Enjoy and be inspired!


12:00 noon – Room A

The Roving Gardener— Judith Irven, Outdoor Spaces Landscape Designs, www.outdoorspacesvermont.comIn this hour we’ll travel to three botanical gardens in our region, and learn what each has to offer. Both the Berkshire Botanical Garden in Stockbridge (MA) and the Montreal Botanical Gardens have been around for about 3/4 of a century, but vary in what they offer and size. The Montreal gardens are among the largest and most important in the world. In contrast is the relatively new but extensive and popular Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens.

12:00 noon – Room

Proven Perennials – Sarah Salatino, Full Circle Gardens, Essex Junction; www.fullcirclegardens.com

In spite of all the new and trendy perennials you find each year in garden catalogs and magazines, there’s a whole world of classic perennial varieties available that have been around for generations. In the quest for the newest and hottest varieties, these proven and hardy older varieties have been nearly forgotten. Come discover these easy care, tough perennial varieties that are long lived, need little care once they are planted and will create stunning displays. Your garden, your pollinators and your wallet will thank you.


1:30 PM – Room A

Faerie Houses: Building delight with Nature– — Sally Smith, www.greenspiritarts.comJoin us for a magical and inspirational presentation by Faerie House artist Sally J Smith, featuring photos of the best creations from her past decade of making Faerie Houses. The artist will also debut her new book which is THE definitive Faerie house builder’s How-to resource. Within the excellent tutorials and step-by-step instructions, the author reveals all her best secret tips and tricks for making magnificent, magical Faerie houses completely from natural materials. Come and be inspired and encouraged to take your building skills as far as your imagination can fly.

1:30 PM – Room B

Trees for Posterity– V.J. Comai , Bartlett Tree Experts; www.bartlett.com —This certified arborist, with many years prior growing trees, will discuss the considerations that must be made in selecting the right tree for the right place, the pros and cons of container grown vs. field grown trees, proper planting techniques, and follow-up care to ensure that your trees will grow and mature to be enjoyed by future generations.


3:00 PM – Room A

The Woodchuck Returns to Gardening—Ron Krupp, author and gardener, So. Burlington — Ron will present his book, The Woodchuck Returns to Gardening, with a power point presentation.  This Vermont organic gardening book is a sister-companion to The Woodchuck’s Guide to Gardening,  Ron’s first garden book. The presentation will include many sketches and paintings of fruits, berries and vegetables along with poems and wit.  The  “Chuckster”,  a garden jester, will  follow Ron around the garden path giving him a hard time now and then.  Be prepared to ask questions.

3:00 PM – Room B

Plant Combinations for a Long Season of Bloom—Warren Leach, Tranquil Lake Nursery, Rehoboth, MA– You can enjoy colorful and fragrant flowers long before the vernal equinox, and have blooms to celebrate spring, summer and fall! This is not a fanciful ideal and you don’t need a heated greenhouse or conservatory. Landscape Horticulturist Warren Leach will introduce plants and planting combination to extend your garden enjoyment.


4:30 PM – Room A

The Facts About Tickborne Diseases in Vermont—Bradley Tompkins, Vermont Dept. of Health, Burlington-– Join Bradley Tompkins from the VT Department of Health for his presentation on the useful facts that will help Vermonters have a clear understanding about tickborne diseases in Vermont. The focus will be on which tickborne diseases are present in the state, who is most at risk for contracting a tickborne disease and when the risk for illness is greatest. We will also discuss strategies that can be used to protect against tickborne diseases.

4:30 PM – Room B

Movie screening: of Hometown Habitat, Stories of Bringing Nature Home; www.themeadowproject.com – This film is a 60-minute environmental, education documentary focused on showing how and why native plants are critical to the survival and vitality of local ecosystems. Did you know that native plants – once established – do not require the use of chemicals such as herbicides and pesticides to maintain their beauty? Or that they don’t require extra watering from our precious supply of potable water? Did you know that our native pollinators and birds generally prefer native plants for nectaring and seed?  Through its profile of 7 hometown habitat heroes, this film will help to answer these questions for you. The narrative thread of this 8-part documentary is provided by renowned entomologist Douglas Tallamy, Ph.D. whose research, books and lectures about the use of non-native plants in landscaping sound the alarm about habitat and species loss. Tallamy challenges the notion that humans are here and nature is someplace else. Tallamy says, “It doesn’t have to and shouldn’t be that way.” Award winning director, Catherine Zimmerman and film crew travelled across the country in the making of this film.


Sunday, March 5, 2017

10:30 AM – Rooms A & B – KEYNOTE ADDRESS

Keynote: Planting in a Post-Wild World—Claudia West, Ecological Sales Manager, North Creek Nurseries, Landenberg, PA— We live in a global city and few wild places remain in today’s world. Planting designers have the opportunity and responsibility to bring wildness and ecological value back into our landscape. This challenge requires a new form of planting design that works with natural principles and marries horticulture with ecology. Join us as we explore how native plants will fit into our future landscape and how plant community based design strategies can help you meet aesthetic and ecological goals during your next planting project.


12:00 noon – Room A

A Sense of Place: Gardens that Celebrate the Natural Landscape Judith Irven, Outdoor Spaces Landscape Designs, www.outdoorspacesvermont.com— The spectacular rural landscape of New York and New England —with majestic mountains, fertile farms and canopied forests—inspires gardens that echo this wider world.  In this richly illustrated talk we will explore how to evoke the imagery of the land in our garden-making, including: the design of natural spaces, layered composition, contrasts of sun and shade, the cycle of the seasons, using stone and wood in the garden, and our choice and arrangement of garden plants.


12:00 noon – Room B

Pollinator Protection from Bottom-Up and Top-Down– Jane Sorensen, Northeast Pollinator Plants, www.northeastpollinator.com—Learn from this farmer, educator, landscape architect, and now grower of pollinator plants, what you can do on the home front to protect and provide the right plants and habitats for pollinators.   Also learn what the Vermont Pollinator Protection Committee is recommending to help the bees and other insects that are vital for our food supply, yet are facing many challenges.


1:30 PM – Room A

Planning and Planting for Sustainable Landscapes—Warren Leach, Tranquil Lake Nursery, Rehoboth, MA– Join landscape horticulturist and perennial grower Warren Leach as he offers planning and planting suggestions to support the creation of gardens and landscapes that minimize the use of limited resources. His design tips and plant recommendations will help you conserve your own precious time and energy as well as our limited natural resources such as water, soil and fossil fuels. Meet a variety of drought tolerant plants, conservation gardening practices and design techniques that will easily translate to your own home.

1:30 PM – Room B

Movie screening: of Hometown Habitat, Stories of Bringing Nature Home; www.themeadowproject.com – This film is a 60-minute environmental, education documentary focused on showing how and why native plants are critical to the survival and vitality of local ecosystems. Did you know that native plants – once established – do not require the use of chemicals such as herbicides and pesticides to maintain their beauty? Or that they don’t require extra watering from our precious supply of potable water? Did you know that our native pollinators and birds generally prefer native plants for nectaring and seed?  Through its profile of 7 hometown habitat heroes, this film will help to answer these questions for you. The narrative thread of this 8-part documentary is provided by renowned entomologist Douglas Tallamy, Ph.D. whose research, books and lectures about the use of non-native plants in landscaping sound the alarm about habitat and species loss. Tallamy challenges the notion that humans are here and nature is someplace else. Tallamy says, “It doesn’t have to and shouldn’t be that way.” Award winning director, Catherine Zimmerman and film crew traveled across the country in the making of this film.

DOWNLOAD THE 2017 VFS SEMINAR SCHEDULE HERE.