FloraFest is set for Saturday

Published 10:59 am Thursday, April 27, 2017

Saturday is the big day for FloraFest. The event will be held at the Charlotte County Extension Office in Charlotte Court House, from 8:30 a.m.-1 p.m. The Charlotte County Master Gardeners and the Southside Virginia Herb Society will host the annual event. 

“Plant sales, lectures, food, crafts and a raffle should make an exciting morning to inspire everyone to enhance our local gardens and paint our landscape,” event organizers said in a press release.

Ann Charlton, pictured, pots an iris in her garden.

“The free lectures begin at 9:30 a.m. with Katie Martin’s ‘Nuisance Wildlife in the Gardens.’ Martin is with the Virginia Game and Inland Fisheries and she always provides helpful information. At 10:30 a.m., Kathy Conner Cornell from the Southside Virginia Herb Society will present ‘Taste of Herbs — from the Garden to the Kitchen Table.’ Cornell will give everyone ideas for using the herbs, which can be purchased at the sale. In addition to the learning experience from the lectures, there will be door prizes.”

The plant sale includes perennials, shrubs, roses, herbs, trees, vegetables and annuals. “Saturday is a good time to plant most of the plants available at Florafest. Among the perennials, there will be lamb’s ear, rudbeckia, hellebores (Lenten rose), daylilies, hosta, asters, phlox, sedum, shasta daisy, coreopsis, primrose, tall verbena, amsonia and peonies. Among the shrubs will be aucuba, winter jasmine, forsythia, fothergilla, rose of Sharon, beauty berry and heirloom roses. Archangel, vinca and pachysandra are some groundcovers. Trees are limited, but include magnolia, crab apple and crape myrtle. Herbs such as rosemary, thyme, basils and mints will be there. Vegetables such as tomatoes and peppers will be available. Annuals include marigolds and larkspur. A few spider plants will be in hanging baskets. Real bargains include reseeding annuals such as obedient plant, money plant and dames rocket. Although one usually waits a week or so before planting veggies and annuals, this year’s unusual weather has already pushed many people to plant early. You may even try your luck with a few mystery plants.”

Organizers say raffle tickets will be available and will entitle one to a chance at winning a small wooden gathering tray and pottery. “The master gardeners have been busy preparing these articles to enhance your garden or home.”

Profits from FloraFest help fund scholarships and grants to students. “Survey your garden, review the flower catalogs, dream about spring and summer, imagine your garden enhanced by purchases from Florafest, grown and propagated by our local Charlotte County Master Gardeners and Herb Society members. These locally acclimated plants will have a great chance of success in area gardens.”

“Remember that Mother’s Day is May 14. Paint your landscape and support our students with these purchases. Come on out on Saturday and join the excitement of Florafest, rain or shine.”