Exciting topics and speakers will be featured at the 18th Annual Horticulture Day being held at the University of Minnesota Southern Research and Outreach Center at Waseca on Saturday, March 10, from 8:30 am to 3 pm.
The program will feature Debbie Lonnee, production coordinator at Bailey Nurseries, Inc. From trendy coneflowers, to new and exciting ninebarks, to pretty petunias, there are a lot of new and colorful plants to brighten up your Minnesota landscape. Debbie will show you the newest and best in shrubs, perennials and annuals that have improved flowers, leaf colors, habit and disease resistance.
U-M Landscape Arboretum associate department director Peter Moe will teach the basics of growing tree fruits: selecting a site, choosing cultivars and rootstocks, planting and pruning trees; and dealing with pests using an integrated pest management program. Peter is part of the U-M team that has developed many hardy fruit varieties over the years with some of the best known including the Honeycrisp and Zestar! apples.
Tom Halbach, professor, U-M Department of Soil, Water and Climate, will present some ideas on how to make better soils. Both research and experience has demonstrated that better soils make better gardens. So what makes a soil good? How do we improve our garden soils? He will also review some basic principles of composting, new research findings, new regulations, composting at different scales, and answering community questions. Participants will learn how to use soils, fertilizers and composts together to produce healthy robust plants with gorgeous flowers and fruits.
Back by popular demand, the "Photo Fest" will again feature the works of amateur photographers. Limited to Horticulture Day attendees, favorite photos may be entered in any of these four categories: MN Gardens and Landscaping (planned and constructed elements in the landscape), MN Flowers and Foliage, MN Fruits, Vegetables and Produce, or MN Birds and Wildlife. Prizes will be awarded for the top pick in each category. Contest rules and other information are available at the SROC Web site: http://sroc.cfans.umn.edu.
Hort Day will be held at SROC located at the west edge of Waseca on Highway 14 and Co. Rd. 57. Registration deadline is Friday, February 24, also the deadline for submission of photo entries.
Space is limited, so reserve your spot at Horticulture Day, by sending your name, address, and $25 registration fee to: Deanne Nelson, Southern Research and Outreach Center, 35838 120th Street, Waseca, MN 56093. Morning refreshments, lunch and handout materials are included in the registration fee. For more information, see the brochure at http://sroc.cfans.umn.edu or contact the U-M SROC at 507-835-3620.