Saturday, January 17, 2015

Seed Exchange 2015 Speakers Announced

Here are the speakers for the upcoming Washington Gardener Seed Exchanges 2015. Seed Exchange attendees trade seeds, exchange planting tips, hear expert speakers, and collect goody bags full of gardening treats. For more information on the exchanges and how to register, go here.

Saturday, January 31 at Behnke Nurseries, Beltsville, MD

Saving Your Vegetable Seeds

Speaker: Paul Blundell, Owner, Southern Exposure Seed Exchange
This workshop will give an overview of the hows and whys of seed saving.  We will explore the state of seed in the world today to discover why seed saving is not only a practical skill for gardeners to develop but also an important one for communities to practice.  We will then dive into the biology of seed production and cover techniques and considerations important for producing quality seed from most common garden varieties.  Resources for reference and further learning will be provided.
   Paul Blundell has been a worker-owner at Southern Exposure Seed Exchange since 2005.  SESE is a worker owned coop mail order seed company in Central Virginia which specializes in heirloom, open-pollinated, and organic vegetable seeds especially suited to the mid-Atlantic and the Southeast.  He has done a little bit of everything and a lot of a few things while there.  Most recently he headed up the design and construction of a new eco-groovy headquarters for the business.


Tips for Starting Ornamental Plants for Seed

Speaker: Carol Allen, Certified Professional Horticulturist
This talk will cover ornamental annual, biennial, and perennial seed saving and growing tips. It will cover: what flowers do best direct-sown versus started indoors, which seeds need special preparation, and the selection of best plants for our Mid-Atlantic region.
   Carol Allen has been involved in many aspects of gardening and horticulture since childhood and likes to describe herself as a committable plant-a-holic. She has more than 25 years experience in the horticulture industry with special interests in Integrated Pest Management, landscape design, native plants, tropicals of many kinds, and especially orchids. Carol enjoys helping people understand how to care for their plants and holds a monthly diagnostic clinic in Washington, DC. After serving a term of two and one half years as supervisory horticulturist at the United States Botanic Garden Conservatory, Carol returned to college and earned a degree in horticulture. Fascinated by the interplay of pest and prey, Carol continues her education on plant pests and diseases. She enjoys teaching people how to outwit their garden pests with little or no pesticide application and also authors the “InsectIndex” column in the Washington Gardener Magazine.

Saturday, February 7 at Green Spring Gardens, VA:

Planting Schemes for Vegetable Gardens: Companion and Succession Planting

Speaker: Elizabeth Olson, Certified Professional Horticulturist
Explore different ways to maximize the space and yield of vegetables gardens. Systems include succession and relay cropping, intercropping, and crop rotation.
   Elizabeth Olson is a Maryland Certified Professional Horticulturist and Specialist in Composting & Compost Utilization with the Maryland Nursery & Landscape Association. She is also a Certified Judge in a number of areas including Vegetables, Fruits & Nuts, Herbs & Vinegars, Canning, and Photography with the Maryland Association of Agricultural Fairs & Shows. Elizabeth belongs to the Garden Writers Association and is the “EdibleHarvest” columnist for Washington Gardener Magazine.  She has published kitchen garden articles on topics ranging from garlic to icebox watermelons.


Seed Saving Traditions

Speaker: Pat Brodowski, Monticello's Vegetable Gardener
The historic tradition of seed saving in America provides a meaningful model for modern gardeners eager to get the most from their gardens. Many special (and more common) garden plants are unavailable from commercial sources and need to be preserved from year to year. Learn the dynamics of seed production—pollination, timing, seed identification, cleaning, and storing.
   Pat Brodowski plants and maintains Jefferson's two-acre kitchen garden of about 180 vegetables and herbs. She has been at Monticello, Thomas Jefferson Foundation since May 2009. Previously, she was the Historian/Educator at the Carroll County Farm Museum.

For more information on the exchanges and how to register, go here.

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