Kingsport Times News Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Abingdon springs into bloom for Garden Faire

April 7th, 2013 6:07 pm by staff report

Forget “50 Shades of Grey.” Folks with a passion for gardening will find “50 Shades of Spring,” along with plenty of inspiration for turning their fantasies of a relaxing, outdoor retreat into reality, at the 16th annual Mid-Atlantic Garden Faire.

Regarded as one of the most “charming, hospitable and popular garden shows on the East Coast,” the event will return April 12-14 to the Southwest Virginia Higher Education Center in Abingdon, Va.

Hours are 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m., Friday and Saturday, April 12 and 13, and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Sunday, April 14.

Admission is $6 per day, with children under 12 admitted free.

The centerpiece of the Mid-Atlantic Garden Faire, presented by the Washington County Virginia Master Gardeners, is its Garden Market Place.

Vendors from throughout the region will have available a variety of garden-related products, including native and heirloom plants, statuary, arbors and trellises, gardening books and tools, birdhouses, flags, potting benches, garden art, ornamental iron, outdoor tablecloths and more.

Horticulture experts will provide seminars and workshops on gardening topics ranging from conifers and curbside appeal to vertical gardening and growing figs.

Workshops will have an additional fee.

Trained horticulturists will also be on hand at The Plant Clinic to offer free advice on solving nagging garden and lawn problems.

Each day, visitors can discover both casual and formal table setting ideas at the Table Top Competition on display in the Mezzanine, where the new Floral Design Competition will also be held. The mezzanine is also where guests can take in an exhibit of nature photography featuring the work of Frank Renault, a Master Gardener certified in both Virginia and Florida, and visit exhibits sponsored by the American Chestnut Foundation and other horticultural organizations.

Light snacks and full meals from Gadabout Catering, Nancy’s Fancy’s Cakes & Catering and Troutdale Catering will be available for purchase in the Garden Cafe.

Door prizes will be given away throughout the event.

All proceeds benefit the Washington County Virginia Master Gardener program, made up of members from Southwest Virginia and East Tennessee. The Washington County Master Gardeners organization has endowed a horticulture scholarship at Virginia Tech designated for students from Southwest Virginia and a perpetual annual scholarship for horticulture students attending Virginia Highlands Community College.

To find out more about the Washington County Master Gardeners, call (276) 676-6309.

For a complete schedule or more information about the Mid-Atlantic Garden Faire, visit

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