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Fall Garden Day Unveils New Plants
By Norman Winter
Central Mississippi Research & Extension Center
University horticulturists will unveil a second new garden of tough roses at the Fall Garden Day Oct. 17 in Crystal Springs. The event has become a major attraction for the state drawing as many as 6,000 visitors.
The rose garden was planted this spring and though quite young, will still give a colorful show. It features shrub roses, ground cover roses, floribundas and a few miniatures. Visitors can view about 20 featured roses.
The Prince and The Pilgrim, two of David Austin's English roses, are in their second year and have their own sections.
David Austin is an English breeder who has combined the vigor and fragrance of old garden roses with the repeat bloom of modern roses. His roses are now gaining widespread recognition in the United States. In addition to the tough roses, there are thousands of annuals and perennials on display.
Ornamental grasses like Muhly, fountain, dwarf fountain, dwarf pampas and maiden grass are some that will be featured in this year's fall garden. New ornamentals will be cup flowers, or nierembergia. Mount Blanc and purple nierembergia have been impressive all summer.
Visitors will see Blackie, the ornamental sweet potato, and hot, new coleus varieties like Solar Sun Rise and Solar Shadow. The Dragon's Wing begonias and New Look pentas will excite gardeners for next year's gardening season.
Look for the Encore azaleas. Though they are young plants, their fall bloom is outstanding.
The Tapien verbena has been massed for a show of color. Two new colors, lavender and powder, were added to the Blue-Violet Tapien and Pink Tapien already available.
Spreading, low-growing Tapien verbenas reach about 6 inches in height and bloom from spring until winter. They are perennial down to 14 degrees and may require mulching to return next year.
The Truck Crops Experiment Station has become an important site in the evaluation of plants considered for the Mississippi Medallion Award. More than 400 varieties of vegetables, herbs and flowers can be seen and evaluated in the 2 1/2 acre garden.
The Fall Garden Day offers wagon ride tours, programs for children, a tent full of educational exhibits and demonstration on cooking with tomatoes at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Families are encouraged to make a day of it as food will be available.
There will be 14 garden topic seminars starting at 9:30 a.m.
The following is the indoor program:
* 9:30-10 a.m. -- Contaminants in the Home;
* 10:15-10:45 a.m. -- Landscaping a New Home;
* 11-11:30 a.m. -- Keeping Your Perennials Perennial;
* 11:45-12:15 -- Hot New Plants;
* 12:30-1 p.m. -- Is There a Doctor In the Garden?;
* 1:15-1:45 p.m. -- Native Plants of Mississippi; and
* 2-2:30 p.m. -- Selling Garden Vegetables.
The outdoor program is:
* 9:30-10 a.m. -- Butterfly Gardening;
* 10:15-10:45 a.m. -- Herb Oils and Vinegar;
* 11-11:30 a.m. -- Fire Ant Control;
* 11:45-12:15 -- Making a Living Wreath;
* 12:30-1 p.m. -- Controlling Weeds Without Chemicals;
* 1:15-1:45 p.m. -- Farm Pond Management; and
* 2-2:30 p.m. -- Food Safety.
The Natural Resource Conservation Service will be on hand featuring The Soil Pit, Back Yard Wildlife Habitat, Wildlife Feed Plots and Pond Construction on the Tour Stops.
The Fall Garden Day is from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. with free admission. Truck Crops Experiment Station is located on Highway 51 between Crystal Springs and Gallman. For more information or for large group reservations, call (601) 892-3731.