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Here’s a class to help you stretch your gardening budget!
“It’s all about proper plant selection,” says instructor Karl Gercens, Section Gardener in the Conservatory. “You can take challenging situations like dry shade, full baking sun, a big empty garden, or clay soil, and find wonderful plants that work.”
In this lively and informative lecture, Gercens, a self-described “plantassionate” gardener, will discuss exciting, dynamic plants that provide a lot of bang for the buck.
“There are many new cultivars of tried and true plants that expand the options for home gardeners,” says Gercens. “The eastern redbud is one example. Now we have cultivars with burgundy, golden, or variegated foliage, even with weeping branches. It’s very versatile and works in a variety of situations. The same is true with our native ninebark or physocarpus.”
Gercens reminds gardeners to consider the human element as well. “If you hate watering, don’t buy plants that require you to be out there with a hose every day. You may fall in love with the way the plants look at the nursery, but it’s not going to work for you. Why waste your money?”
Attendees will go home with a detailed plant list on which they can find plants that will thrive in their specific difficult situation. Need plants that spread quickly so you don’t have to buy a lot of them? Check. Deer-resistant plants? Check. A shrub that can handle intense sun and clay soil? Check.
“You can have a garden of superlatives,” Gercens says, “and not throw your money away.”
Spend a Little, Grow a Lot class: Thursday, February 25, 2010, 6:30-8:30 PM. $36 Garden Pass member, $40 non-member. Click here to register.
Garden Pass Members receive a 10% Discount on more than 140 classes, workshops, daytrips and educational offerings. Check out these great upcoming classes:
Plant Science: Soils
A plant's nutrition, growth, and ability to endure environmental conditions all depend heavily on the soil it's growing in. Understand how a soil's pH and organic matter affect plant growth and learn how to work with the soil you have in your garden to get the best results. Upon completion of this class, students will gain an understanding of soils (structure, composition, and type), plant nutrition and nutrient deficiencies, composting and organic matter, and fertilizers.
Tuesdays, Feb 9-Mar 16, 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM, $162 Garden Pass member, $180 non-member
Introduction to Plant Illustration
This course is for beginners who marvel at the variety of shapes and forms in plants and flowers. Taught with patience and humor in a relaxed atmosphere, each student will be encouraged to work at their own pace and develop his/her own style. The instructor offers frequent demonstrations to clarify the process. Although the primary medium is watercolor, students are welcome to work in graphite, colored pencils or pastels.
Mondays, Feb 22-Mar 29, 9:00 AM to11:30 AM, $135 Garden pass member, $150 non-member
Often when people discuss climate change they look at animal systems. The story about plants may be less visible, but is no less compelling.
Dr. Robert E. Lyons, Director of Longwood’s Graduate Program and professor in the University of Delaware Department of Plant and Soil Sciences, points to studies that show a significant shift of species’ optimum habitat elevation—the range where plants are most likely to be found.
“We’re seeing plants that are comfortable at higher altitudes than where they may have been found in the past,” says Lyons. “One can’t absolutely say that this is global warming, but it seems like a very solid piece of plant-based evidence that adds to the picture.”
Differing climate conditions at varying mountain altitudes provide ideal conditions for studying the effects of global warming on vegetation. Scientists working in the Alps and the Pyrenees have found that some plants are shifting their preferred locations to higher spots to maintain their temperature preferences for continued growth. An examination of historical records for the past century supports this observation. Some plants have slowly been moving to higher elevations in order to remain within their ideal temperature zones.
“This is just one aspect of the climate change issue,” says Lyons, “but it has broad implications.”
Most sobering is the possibility that some plants’ needs for optimum growing temperatures that could occur at higher elevations may result in a situation where the plants simply run out of room.
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Meet the arborists and gardeners that care for our trees and flowers throughout Spring Blooms, and see demonstrations throughout our Conservatory and outdoor gardens.
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Get ready for an evening of oohs and ahhs, as Longwood presents spectacular Fireworks & Fountains shows guaranteed to make your summer memorable.
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Registration is now open for our 2013 Continuing Education courses!
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