River Valley Lawn & Garden Show March 23-25
Inspiration and know-how can be found at the Lawn &?Garden Show
Every year the cure for gardeners’ winter blahs comes with the River Valley Master Gardeners Lawn & Garden Show. Held indoors at the Fort Smith Convention Center, nothing can stop the flowers from blooming and green things from growing. This three-day exposition, with educational seminars and interesting vendors, signals that the growing season is about to begin.
Master Gardeners is a community program of the University of Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service. To fulfill its mission to educate, the group presents free classes and demonstrations at the show and year-round at its demonstration gardens and classroom.
Commercial garden centers and landscapers compete to create spectacular garden displays with water features and living flowers. Vendors offer lawn and garden tools, outdoor furniture and storage buildings, gazebos, living plants and other gardening products.
The show includes the Fort Smith Council of Garden Clubs' annual flower design show and horticulture judging as well as a photography contest and exhibit by the Photo Alliance.
Children can find a fun such as face-painting and this year, a “Heartland Choo-Choo” train provided by Anne and Wayne Porter. Kids can pose as the engineer or on the caboose for photos.
Proceeds from the show help to support the projects of the Master Gardeners at its facility, the Learning Fields at Chaffee Crossing, where they hold classes create hands-on demonstration gardens.
Master Gardeners give thousands of hours of volunteer service as well, tending to the landscape at the Convention Center, a meditation garden at Sparks Regional Medical Center, in city parks, at Miss Laura’s Visitor Center, the Clayton House and other public sites.
The Master Gardeners always cultivate in an environmentally gentle way to encourage honeybees and pollinators, increase food yields, improve soil and conserve water. All of their knowledge is shared with the public through educational programs.
Admission is $5, good for all three days. Children 11 and under are free. 10-a.m.-6 p.m. March 23-24; 10 a.m.-5 p.m. March. 25. Fort Smith Convention Center, 900 Rogers Avenue, Fort Smith, Ark.
Guest experts, educators and local gardeners giving free talks:
Matt Fryer - Perfect Soil for Gardens
Calvin Bey - Organic Gardening
Berni Kurz - Container Gardening
Pat Robbins - Photographing Flowers
Ralph Cooper - All About Roses
Sherri Smith - Rose Diseases
Jenny Burbidge - Landscape Ideas
H.C. Varnadore - Getting Rid of Moles & Gophers
Susan Horton - All About Strawberries
Mike Richardson -Turf Grass Management
Bradley Martin - Orchids