Conferences/Shows

Learn About Gardening, Small-Scale Farming – CT NOFA Winter Conference

If you are interested in growing your own food, community gardening, small-scale farming, or any related topics consider attending the CT NOFA Winter Conference on Saturday, March 1, 2014.

Held at Western Connecticut State University, this year’s conference will be the 32nd annual winter conference held by the Connecticut chapter of the Northeast Organic Farming Association (NOFA). CT NOFA consists of farmers, gardeners, land care professionals and consumers working together to promote healthy, organic, and sustainable gardening and farming practices. CT NOFA also works to educate consumers about such practices and encourages them to support local growers and farmers growing food using such methods.

Press Release Winter Conference 2014 (2)One does not have to be a large grower to glean useful and valuable information and training from the many, many topics presented at the Winter Conference. Anyone, even balcony gardeners, interested in learning more about organic and sustainable food growing and production methods can find something of interest at the conference.

Click topics to scroll through the long list of workshops. Click Registration to sign up.

Registration remains open until February 24, 2014.

Even if you cannot attend CT NOFA’s Winter Conference, take some time to learn more about CT NOFA. They offer resources for gardeners, seasoned farmers and those wanting to try their farming skills, creating school and community gardens, organic landscape practices, and they annually publish a guide to Connecticut’s Organic Farms and Orchards.

Getting to know CT NOFA is a wonderful way to increase your understanding of and connection to local growers, some of whom may be your neighbors.

AT a time when consumers are so bombarded by goods and services from lands afar, CT NOFA acts as a local resource for local growers, producers and consumers.

Check them out.

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2014 Joene Hendry

Sights from the 2013 Boston Flower and Garden Show

It’s a dreary day in Connecticut, a good day to revisit the sights my camera caught at the 2013 Boston Flower and Garden Show.

With spring just around the corner … yes, it’s around the corner in spite of the cold and snowy weather that continues to hang on … it’s good to peruse different design ideas. You never know what might get your design juices flowing.

A living wall of herbs.

Not exactly a low maintenance feature, but cool, nonetheless.

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Winter to spring.

I’ve seen many flower and garden show displays yet I don’t recall ever seeing one showing a winter landscape. Imaging how useful a display would be if it showed the same landscape in all four seasons.

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Fun playhouses for kids and chickens.

The kid playhouse (left) looked like so much fun … I wanted to climb into it. Lucky chickens in the coop on the right!

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Liquid fire?

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A unique waterfall.

Look to the left of the pergola where water is sheeting from the roof.

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Oriental flare.

The dragon atop the arch is most interesting.

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Zen-like simplicity.

Note the use of corrugated metal as the background.

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Metal features.

These rods mimic the structure of a dormant woody shrub.

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The displays were intriguing, but the vendors were fewer than I expected.

 

Still, I found a perfect new addition for my garden.

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Meet Sandy, a crested crane standing about three feet tall on my front porch for now. He will find a more permanent home once winter lets go of my gardens.

Sandy is a creation of Francis Metal Works, craftsmen who create these wonderful statues from Minnesota fieldstone and powder coated iron.  Check out some of their other creations … ducks, herons, ibis, and pelicans. At the show they also had spiders and turtles. All were fantastic. It was difficult to restrain from adopting a few of Sandy’s show mates.

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2013 Joene Hendry

Native Plants for Connecticut Gardens

Connecticut gardeners have another opportunity this week to learn more about landscaping with native plants, shrubs and trees. The UConn Garden Conference on March 16, 2012 is one (click on the highlighted link to learn more). Another is at the monthly meeting, Thursday, March 15, 2012 of the Connecticut Horticultural Society when landscape designer Larry Weaner will discuss how to use Connecticut’s native plants to create beautiful, low maintenance landscapes that fit well into the local environment.

His talk, “At Home with Natives,” promises to be another lesson in planting the right plant in the right place for entrance areas, screening and sloped areas, woodland gardens and residential meadows.

Read more about Larry Weaner and how to get to Emmanuel Synagogue in West Hartford by 7:00 pm on March 15, and be sure to bring a $10 donation if you have not yet become a member of Connecticut Horticultural Society.

To bone up on the topic of native plants visit Native Plants & Wildlife Gardens. This blog is a great resource for any gardener or naturalist interested in learning more about native plants and how they work in the environment. It covers current issues and basic information that will help you have a good grasp of the issue before hearing Larry Weaner speak.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA To read more about two good resources on native plants in general click on, Make a Difference. Plant Natives, which highlights Doug Tallamy’s book Bringing Nature Home, and On The Bookshelf: The Green Garden: A New England Guide, which reviews Ellen Sousa’s book on planting natives in New England.

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2012 Joene Hendry