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Winter Garden Seminar at Warriors' Path State Park highlights native plants

staff report • Jan 5, 2013 at 6:46 AM

Retired horticultural educator Hugh Conlon will present “Born in the USA: Native Trees and Shrubs You Should Be Planting” during Warriors’ Path State Park’s 24th Annual Winter Garden Seminar.

The seminar will be held at 10 a.m., Jan. 19 at the recreation building on Duck Island at the park. The event is free to the public, but pre-registration is requested.

Conlon worked as a University extension area horticulturist for 33 years, both in Northeast Tennessee and in Southwest Iowa. Born and raised in Brooklyn, N.Y., he earned a bachelor of science degree in pomology from Cornell University in 1967 and a master of science degree in plant sciences from the University of Delaware in 1969. His doctorate in ornamental horticulture came from Michigan State University.

He has organized hundreds of educational meetings for growers and landscapers, and also organized the first UT Master Gardener class in the Tri-Cities, and he continues to play an active role in the Master Gardener program.

He writes garden features and articles for magazines and newspapers, and is a frequent contributor to various landscape and nursery trade newsletters as well as to the Southern Appalachian Plant Society newsletter. He has written more than 40 Extension garden fact sheets under the “Tennessee Great Gardens” logo.

“My retirement provides me more time to enjoy my ‘addiction’ to plants, and to share my profession with those whose company I enjoy the most — you who till the soil,” he said.

Winter is the perfect time to plan your natural yard and garden, and Conlon will highlight some 50 native trees and shrubs that are ideal for gardens in the Southern Appalachians. He will identify some of the best, and how to plan, choose, purchase and maintain them.

Because everyone’s garden is different, there will be time set aside for answering gardeners’ questions.

For more information about the seminar, call Ranger Marty Silver at (423) 239-8531 or 239-6786, email him at Marty.Silver@tn.gov, or visit http://www.tn.gov/environment/parks/WarriorsPath/docs/winter_brochure.pdf.

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