Garden Seminar returns to Heritage Park

By Jason A. Smith
Times Correspondent

With autumn upon us, local gardening aficionados are invited to Heritage Park this month to learn more about various aspects of fall planting.

The Henry County Master Gardeners will host their second annual Summer’s End Garden Seminar September 29 from 9 a.m., until 4 p.m. It will be in Meeting Room B of the Henry County Extension Office, 97 Lake Dow Road in McDonough. Registration is $40 and seating is limited.

The event will feature four sessions, and lunch will be provided.

Laura Parks of Stockbridge is the president of the Henry County Master Gardeners Extension Volunteers. She said in addition to the informational sessions themselves, one new aspect of the seminar is a Later Mater Contest, for people who plant mid-season tomatoes.

“I can’t wait to see what kind of results we have from that,” said Parks. “Most gardeners will do secession planting, and if you do that, it stretches your garden season out. You can have fresh vegetables until the frost, which in our area is later in the year.”

Speakers for the seminar will include Christine Patrum, supervisor of the Native Plant Botanical Garden at Georgia State University Perimeter College. From 9:30-10:30 a.m., Patrum will address the role of the state’s native plants in the ecosystem and human culture.

From 11 a.m., to noon, Scott McMahan will speak on the Atlanta Botanical Garden’s International Plant Exploration Program. McMahan worked for five years as a propagator for a large wholesale grower, and as ABG’s nursery manager for several years before opening his first nursery.

From 1-2 p.m., Karen McKernan will speak on “Herbaceous Spaces.” McKer-nan, a Master Gardener in Fayette County since 2001, is a member of the Mushroom Club of Georgia and the Georgia Native Plant Society. She specializes in understanding the soil and working with the environment.

A Tri-County Extension Agent Roundtable is scheduled from 2:30-3:30 p.m. The question-and-answer session will feature: Frank Hancock, agriculture and natural resource agent for the Extension Office in McDon-ough; Kim Toal, Fayette County Extension coordinator; and her counterpart in Newton County, Ted L. Wynne.

The seminar will also include vendors and door prizes for those in attendance. “We do still have openings for vendors, and for attendees, of course,” said Parks. “We’ve got some awfully good cooks who will be there as well.”

For more information, call 770-288-8421.