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Southeastern Plant Symposium
Permission granted for reprint and redistribution
May 12, 2022

Southeastern Plant Symposium and Rare Plant Auction June 10-11, 2022 
NCSU's JC Raulston Arboretum in Raleigh, NC – Courtesy Robert B Butler
RALEIGH, NORTH CAROLINA, USA – Attention all plant-aholics, plant nerds, nurserymen, nurserywomen, gardeners, and horticulturists! NC State University's JC Raulston Arboretum and Juniper Level Botanic Garden extend an invitation to the fourth annual Southeastern Plant Symposium and Rare Plant Auction on June 10 and 11. This year's program is live and in-person in Raleigh's vibrant downtown and available online.

The Southeastern Plant Symposium presents two full days of plant lust featuring the best-of-the-best to discuss cutting-edge plants. Plant explorers, plant breeders, nurserymen, nurserywomen, and other experts will dive deep into what is new and exciting in the plant world.

What could be better than great lectures and mingling with fellow horti-thusiasts? How about a chance to bid on some of the most exciting plants during the completely mind-numbing, fever-inducing silent auction? Southeastern Plant Symposium is the one garden event not to miss in 2022.

The Southeastern Plant Symposium is organized by NC State University's JC Raulston Arboretum and Juniper Level Botanic Garden. The Symposium is presented by Proven Winners ColorChoice Flowering Shrubs.

Friday, June 10, 2022 – 9:00 am–4:30 pm
Friday, June 10, 2022 – 6:00 pm–8:30 pm
Saturday, June 11, 2022 – 9:00 am–4:45 pm
Speakers: (see photos, presentation topics and bios below)

Friday, June 10:

Eleftherios Dariotis, the Greek plantsman, aka Liberto Dario on Facebook, horticultural genius, Plant Biology, UC Davis, Horticulture, HAS University, Netherlands, lives in Athens, Greece 

Adam Black, Assistant Curator and Head of Propagation, Bartlett Tree Research Laboratories and Arboretum

Dan Hinkley, Plantsman and Owner, Windcliff and Director Emeritus, Heronswood

Patrick McMillan, Ph.D., Horticulturist, naturalist, television personality, and conservation biologist, Horticultural Manager, Juniper Level Botanic Gardens

Kelly D. Norris, Gardener, Curator, Artist, and Owner, Three Oaks Garden

Peter Zale, Ph.D., Associate Director of Conservation, Plant Breeding, and Collections, Longwood Gardens

Saturday, June 11:

Tony Avent, Co-owner, Juniper Level Botanic Garden and Plant Delights Nursery

Ian Caton, Co-owner, Wood Thrush Natives

Shannon Currey, Marketing Director, Hoffman Nursery

Richard Hawke, Director of Ornamental Plant Research, Chicago Botanic Garden

Hayes Jackson, Urban Regional Extension Agent, Alabama Cooperative Extension System and Alabama A&M University

Adrienne Roethling, Director, Paul J. Ciener Botanic Garden

Mark Weathington, Director, JC Raulston Arboretum
Registration Links:

Advance registration is required. Please register online using our registration e-store (in-person program and online program). Registration is limited and is considered complete when payment is received.
Friday Presentations:
"The Botanical Riches of Texas: A Gold Mine for Southeastern Horticulture"
Adam Black, Assistant Curator and Propagator, The Bartlett Arboretum

From the Pineywoods of east Texas to the Chihuahuan Deserts of the Trans-Pecos, Texas offers a dizzying array of exciting native perennials, ferns, grasses, etc., unknown to horticulture, many of which often prove remarkably adaptable to cultivation elsewhere. Attractive endemic rarities abound, mixing with exotic Mexican plants barely ranging across the southern border, while westernmost representatives of familiar southeastern flora are often tougher than their eastern counterparts—built to withstand the hostile nature of the Texas environment—and therefore your garden as well!
Adam Black – Courtesy of Bartlett Tree Research Laboratories and Arboretum
Adam Black
Assistant Curator and Head of Propagation, Bartlett Tree Research Laboratories and Arboretum

Adam Black is a lifelong plant enthusiast with a passion for the rare, unusual, and esoteric. He combines his experience in the fields of botany and horticulture by promoting diverse landscapes while also collaborating with various gardens and universities documenting and collecting imperiled plant species for the purposes of research and conservation. Currently assistant curator and head of propagation at Bartlett Tree Research Laboratories and Arboretum in Charlotte, North Carolina, he previously was a botanical/horticultural consultant and also served as director of The John Fairey Garden (formerly Peckerwood Garden) in Hempstead, Texas.
"Perennial Pleasures from a Pacific Northwest Garden"
Dan Hinkley, Plantsman and Owner, Windcliff and Director Emeritus, Heronswood

Dan will discuss some recent and not so recent introductions from abroad and his own backyard that has him transfixed in his gardens of Windcliff and Heronswood near Kingston, Washington.
Dan Hinkley – Courtesy of Heronswood
Dan Hinkley
Plantsman and Owner, Windcliff and Director Emeritus, Heronswood

Dan is a renowned teacher, writer, plant explorer and winner of several awards, including the prestigious Liberty Hyde Bailey Award and the Veitch Memorial Medal from the Royal Horticulture Society. Known for international plant exploration, he is just as famous for starting the garden Heronswood which became world renowned for its mail order catalog of rare and unusual plants. He serves on the boards of the Elisabeth C. Miller Botanical Garden Trust and the Elisabeth C. Miller Botanical Garden Endowment Trust. Dan is the author of two books and has a third one in progress. Currently, he lives in Indianola, Washington, and is realizing his latest endeavor, the gardens of Windcliff.
"Palmetto State Perennials for Southeastern Gardens"
Patrick McMillan, Ph.D., Horticultural Manager, Juniper Level Botanic Gardens

Though it is often ignored as a source of great plants, South Carolina, with 4050 species of plants growing wild enjoys one of the richest and most glorious floras of any state. Numerous plants from this region can enhance your garden both visually and environmentally. South Carolina’s flora includes plant species adapted to environments ranging from cool mountain coves to desert-like outcrops and hot, humid savannas and swamps. Drought and heat-adapted ecotypes, pollinator magnets and simply spectacular new introductions such as Ravenel's Eryngo have resulted from selections made from South Carolina Natives. Join, horticulturist, naturalist, television personality, and conservation biologist, Patrick McMillan, the lead author of A Guide to the Wildflowers of South Carolina (USC Press, 2022) for a tour de force of the unique and garden-worthy plants that call the Palmetto State home.
Patrick McMillan, Ph.D. – Courtesy of Juniper Level Botanic Garden
Patrick McMillan, Ph.D.
Horticultural Manager, Juniper Level Botanic Gardens

Patrick is a lifelong gardener and the horticultural manager at Juniper Level Botanic Garden. Patrick received his BS in Biology from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, and his Ph.D. in biological sciences from Clemson University. He is perhaps best known as the Emmy Award-winning host, co-creator and writer of the popular ETV nature program Expeditions with Patrick McMillan. For over 30 years, Patrick has worked as a professional naturalist, biologist and educator. His range of experience has concentrated on botany, though he is also well-respected through his work in ichthyology, herpetology and mammalogy. Patrick is a professional naturalist, the Glenn and Heather Hilliard Professor of Environmental Sustainability at Clemson University, where he is also a faculty member in the Department of Forestry and Environmental Conservation, the director of the South Carolina Botanical Garden, the Bob Campbell Geology Museum and the Clemson Experimental Forest and an honorary member of the Clemson University Class of 1939. Before joining the staff of JLBG he was director of Heronswood Garden in Kingston, Washington.
Consilience: At the Intersections of Horticulture, Ecology, Design, and Curation
Kelly D. Norris, Gardener, Curator, Artist, and Owner, Three Oaks Garden

My life's work orbits the world of plants, tracing an arc that intersects multiple disciplines. On any given day, I'm as likely to be puttering in my garden as I am to be traipsing about a prairie or modeling plant communities in my studio. The richness of perspectives offered by each of these disciplines leads to diverse plantings that celebrate biodiversity and the legacy of landscapes while offering a template for how to plant the world a more beautiful, ecologically connected place. Through consilience, I believe we can discover a desirable address at the intersections of horticulture, ecology, design, and curation.
Kelly Norris – Courtesy of Three Oaks Garden
Kelly D. Norris
Gardener, Curator, Artist, and Owner, Three Oaks Garden

Kelly D. Norris is one of the leading horticulturists of his generation. An award-winning author and plantsman, Kelly’s work in gardens has been featured in The New York Times, Organic Gardening, Better Homes and Gardens, Martha Stewart Living, Fine Gardening, Garden Design, and in numerous local and regional media appearances. His passion for planting at the intersections of horticulture and ecology has culminated in a new book New Naturalism: Designing and Planting a Resilient, Ecologically Vibrant Home Garden which debuted in 2021 from Cool Springs Press. Kelly also presents plants for Cottage Farms Direct on QVC and lectures widely to consumer and industry audiences. Kelly holds a bachelor’s and master’s degree in horticulture from Iowa State University.
Courtesy of Longwood Gardens
"Noteworthy Plants from the Research and Conservation Program at Longwood Gardens"
Peter Zale, Ph.D., Associate Director of Conservation, Plant Breeding, and Collections, Longwood Gardens

At Longwood gardens, we use a variety of methods to obtain, develop, and introduce new plants for use in the gardens and beyond.  This presentation will cover the roles that plant exploration, plant breeding, plant conservation, and strategic plant collections development play in this process and highlight some of the most exciting new introductions currently growing in our Research Nursery and in the gardens. Although we work broadly across a variety of plant groups, some of the focal groups highlighted in this presentation include Bletilla, Cypripedium and hardy orchids in general, Phlox, Arisaema, and many others.
Peter Zale, Ph.D. – Courtesy of Longwood Gardens
Peter Zale, Ph.D.
Associate Director of Conservation, Plant Breeding, and Collection, Longwood Gardens

Peter Zale, Ph.D., holds a Master’s degree and Ph.D. in plant breeding and genetics (2009, 2014) from The Ohio State University and is currently associate director, Conservation, Plant Breeding, and Collections, at Longwood Gardens in Kennett Square, Pennsylvania.  In this position, he leads curatorial activities, the plant breeding programs, the plant exploration program, the plant conservation program, and plant collections curation efforts.  He has participated in over 25 plant exploration expeditions throughout the United States, Japan, Vietnam, Myanmar, the Republic of Georgia, Azerbaijan, Uzbekistan, and China.  In his spare time, he has been building his own "private botanical garden" rich in collections of hardy geophytes, woodland plants, trees, shrubs, and a variety of other plants that reflect personal interests in a wide variety of plant groups.  
"Rare Plants and Plant Communities of the Appalachian Region"
Ian Caton, Co-owner, Wood Thrush Natives

This lecture is an introduction to some of the rare species and the communities from which they are found that I have had the pleasure to work with over the years, both growing and introducing them into the horticultural trade. Some may by now be familiar, but others are still quite unknown. Many have broad applications to gardening in challenging areas such as green-roofs, urban brownfields, city hell-strips, and salted roadsides. Others are curiosities that may be easily grown in a typical garden.
Ian Caton – Courtesy of Wood Thrush Natives
Ian Caton
Co-owner, Wood Thrush Natives
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Ian Caton has been the owner/operator of Wood Thrush Natives (formerly Enchanters Garden) since March of 2013. Wood Thrush Natives is a nursery specializing in native plants of the Appalachian region including West Virginia, Virginia, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, and North Carolina. A focus of the nursery is the introduction of new and rare native plants which are little known or underappreciated in the nursery trade. Previously, Ian had been an employee of Larry Weaner Landscape Associates (a landscape firm specializing in the use and promotion of native plants in landscaping) since 2001 and has an ongoing relationship with the firm and its educational arm: The New Directions in the Landscape program.
"Sedges Step Into the Spotlight"
Shannon Currey, Marketing Director, Hoffman Nursery
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Sedges may be backup singers in the plant world, but they're beginning to steal the show. This group of herbaceous perennials is diverse in colors, textures, and cultural adaptations. Asian varieties shine with beautiful habits, variegation, and color. North American natives are getting attention for their versatility in layered plantings and as alternatives to mulch and traditional lawns. The Southeast has a wealth of native Carex that are well-adapted to our conditions and support pollinators, birds, and small mammals. Awaken your inner sedge head as we bring Carex out of the background and into the spotlight.
Shannon Currey – Courtesy of Hoffman Nursery
Shannon Currey
Marketing Director, Hoffman Nursery

Shannon Currey has been with Hoffman Nursery for 15 years, where she's been learning, writing, and talking about grasses and sedges. She started her career as a social scientist but changed fields in 2003 to pursue horticulture at NC State University. At Hoffman Nursery, she had a range of responsibilities, including coordinating the trial program and managing the sales team. She leaves the nursery at the end of June and plans to continue working in horticulture. Shannon is currently Southern Region director for the Perennial Plant Association and chairs its Education Advisory Committee. She represents the North Carolina Nursery and Landscape Association on the NC Plant Conservation Scientific Committee and was honored with the 2020 Libby Wilder Award for outstanding contribution to the nursery industry by a female.
Courtesy of Chicago Botanic Garden
"Proving Their Worth: Plant Evaluation Trials at Chicago Botanic Garden
Richard Hawke, Plant Evaluation Manager, Chicago Botanic Garden

Hundreds of new perennials are introduced every year, and whether gardeners are excited or disappointed by the plants depends in part on a rigorous evaluation to determine their cultural adaptability, disease and pest resistance, and winter hardiness. Richard Hawke will share information on perennials that are proving to be beautiful, reliable, and hardy in the Chicago Botanic Garden’s evaluation trials.
Richard Hawke – Courtesy of Chicago Botanic Garden
Richard Hawke
Director of Ornamental Plant Research, Chicago Botanic Garden

Richard Hawke is director of ornamental plant research at the Chicago Botanic Garden and responsible for the breeding, evaluation, and introduction programs. He previously managed the plant evaluation program from 1985 to 2022. Richard has a horticulture degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He is an instructor for the School of the Chicago Botanic Garden, the author of Plant Evaluation Notes, and is an author and contributing editor for Fine Gardening. In 2005, Richard received the Perennial Plant Association's Academic Award for teaching excellence. The Plant Evaluation Program received the Award for Program Excellence from the American Public Garden Association in 2008. Richard is currently president-elect on the board of directors for the Perennial Plant Association.
"Welcome to the Jungle … Creating a Tropical Oasis Beyond the Tropics"
Hayes Jackson, Urban Regional Extension Agent, Alabama Cooperative Extension System and Alabama A&M University

Everyone loves the feeling of tropics … the swaying palm trees, exotic flowers in vibrant colors, and fabulous foliage of various shades of green. Tropical landscapes in colder climates of the South can be easy when using the hardiest palms, bold textured perennials, and a few hardier selections of other warm climate plants. Join Hayes as he highlights some of his selections of plants that he has utilized in creating the Tropical Courtyard planting at Longleaf Botanical Gardens in Anniston, Alabama. Hayes will also delve into some of the latest trials and successes of pushing the limits in horticulture in the upper reaches of zone 8 in central Alabama.
Hayes Jackson – Courtesy of Alabama Cooperative Extension System
Hayes Jackson
Urban Regional Extension Agent, Alabama Cooperative Extension System and Alabama A&M University

Hayes Jackson graduated from Auburn University with a degree in landscape design and ornamental horticulture and a Master's in environmental biology at Jacksonville State University. Hayes is the urban regional Extension agent with the Alabama Cooperative Extension System and Alabama A&M University. He works in Anniston with community-based programs in urban horticulture. Hayes also serves as the liaison to Longleaf Botanical Gardens in Anniston in collaboration with the city of Anniston and the Alabama Cooperative Extension System.
"Tied Up and Twisted: Plants That Weave, Scramble, and Meander"
Adrienne Roethling, Director, Paul J. Ciener Botanic Garden

Vines is not a scary word. There are many worthy vines that belong in the garden. Vines can interlace like yarn on a stark wall, connect elements together, extend the height of a border, or wander aimlessly. The choice is yours to make. Let's take a look at some garden worthy vines that offer pizzazz without the burden of aggressiveness.
Adrienne Roethling – Courtesy of Paul J. Ceiner Botanic Garden
Adrienne Roethling
Director, Paul J. Ciener Botanic Garden

Adrienne Roethling was appointed director of the Paul J. Ceiner Botanical Garden (PJCBG) in Kernersville, North Carolina, in 2021. Prior to her appointment, her active, hands-on participation in the management of the gardens and its public activities since 2008 have won her scholarships from Chanticleer Gardens and American Public Gardens Association for further training in professional development. Adrienne trained at Longwood Gardens and previously worked for eight years as garden curator for Juniper Level Botanic Gardens at Plant Delights Nursery prior to going to the Paul J. Ciener Botanical Garden which she joined as curator of PJCBG. Adrienne is a public speaker and writes for national and local publications as well as Martha Steward Living online blog.
Tony Avent, Juniper Level Botanic Garden – Mark Weathington, NCSU's JC Raulston Arboretum
Courtesy Robert B Butler
Tony Avent, Contrarian Plantsman, Writer, and Founder of Plant Delights Nursery and Juniper Level Botanic Garden

Tony Avent is the owner of Plant Delights Nursery and Juniper Level Botanical Gardens in Raleigh, North Carolina, both being based on extensive field research, educational outreach, and conservation. Not only has Tony completed 60 international and southeastern United States botanical expeditions, but he is a popular freelance garden writer and lecturer (over 640 lectures since 1990). He is also a prolific hosta breeder. Tony serves on many committees, including the USDA-ARS Hardiness Zone Map Revision Advisory Committee, North Carolina Department of Agriculture Plant Conservation Scientific Committee, and the Woody Plant Advisory Committee. He's a contributing editor for Horticulture magazine and was an invited participant in the St. Louis Summit, a workshop on linking ecology and horticulture to prevent plant invasions.
Mark Weathington, Director, JC Raulston Arboretum

Mark is the director of NC State University's JC Raulston Arboretum where he is passionate in his work to connect people with plants. His latest book, Gardening in the South: The Complete Homeowner's Guide, takes his common sense approach and a bit of humor and makes gardening accessible for any level of gardener.
Mark travels extensively searching for new plants to diversify the American landscape and lecturing on a variety of topics in horticulture to further the JC Raulston Arboretum's vision of "Planning and Planting a Better World." His explorations and speaking engagements have taken him to China, Taiwan, Japan, South Korea, Ecuador, Europe, Mexico, New Zealand, South Africa, and throughout the United States.
Sponsors

Presenting Sponsor:
Proven Winners – Color Choice Flowering Shrubs

Student Scholarships Sponsor
Ball

Break Sponsors
Friday Morning
Leaf & Limb – Health Trees. Happy People.

Saturday Morning
PermaTill One Time

Sponsorship

Become a SponsorSponsorship opportunities are available for the annual Southeastern Plant Symposium hosted by the JC Raulston Arboretum and Juniper Level Botanic Garden. Events like this innovative symposium are only possible through the support of our fellow horticulturists. We hope that you will consider sponsoring the symposium so that we can continue sharing the endlessly exciting discoveries in the world of plants. Proceeds support the mission of the JC Raulston Arboretum and the Juniper Level Botanic Garden Endowment.

Hotel

The host hotel for the Southeastern Plant Symposium is the Sheraton Raleigh Hotel in downtown Raleigh, North Carolina. The Sheraton is located at 421 South Salisbury Street.

Highlights

Located in downtown Raleigh
Onsite cafe and restaurant
Indoor, modern fitness center
Within walking distance of restaurants, breweries, amphitheaters, and museums
Within walking distance of a few R-LINE bus stops – the R-LINE is Raleigh's free circulator bus service with destinations throughout much of downtown

Book Your Room

Hotel Reservations To make your reservation, please visit Sheraton Raleigh Hotel's Web site. The host hotel is located at 421 South Salisbury Street, Raleigh, NC 27601. When making a reservation using the link above, our group name is already applied. If you call in your registration, please mention "North Carolina State University Southeastern Plant Symposium." Please note that our group rate expires on Tuesday, May 12.

Cost

Early: $250.00 (ends Sunday, May 29); late registration: $300.00 (starts, Monday, May 30); and $80.00 for optional Friday dinner and evening presentation.

Registration

Advance registration is required. Please register online using our registration e-store (in-person program and online program). Registration is limited and is considered complete when payment is received.

Cancellation

Program cancellations can be made up to two weeks before the program's start date. A 15% cancellation fee applies.

Location

Sheraton Raleigh Hotel, 421 South Salisbury Street, Raleigh, NC 27601

Questions

Please write jcraprograms@ncsu.edu for more information about this symposium.
April 14, 2022

NCSU’s Raulston Arboretum announces Garden Festival, Southeastern Plant Symposium, Rare Plant Auction
JC Raulston Arboretum, Raleigh, NC – Courtesy Robert B Butler
RALEIGH, NORTH CAROLINA – Saturday, April 30, following a two-year hiatus, JC Raulston Arboretum at NC State University reintroduces Raulston Blooms! – a springtime garden festival and plant sale for all ages.

“Especially exciting for staff right now is seeing the truly eye-popping, mouth-watering selection of plants coming out of our greenhouses and from nurseries around the country,” said Mark Weathington, Director of JC Raulston Arboretum (JCRA).

Rain or shine, the garden gates open at 10 AM and close at 4 PM. Exhibits and activities include:

–JCRA’s Spring Plant Sale – including Superior Plants Nursery, Pine Knot Farms, DirtBag Gardens, and Raleigh PawPaws Urban Farm
–The 20th Annual Birdhouse Competition – competitive categories from Serious to Flights of Fancy plus four age groups 4 to 16
–Fun, hands-on activities for children and adults
–Invited artists and crafters ­– Cedar Works by Frank, Katie Brooks’ paintings on dried leaves, Elisabeth Wheeler’s wood pattern scarves, Bonsai Bottles Terrariums, and more
–Four food trucks plus NC State Howling Cow ice cream
–Gardening talks with the experts, including Danielle Hochstetter’s Tea 101; Bryce Lane’s Spring Gardening Tips; Danesha Seth Carley, Ph.D. discusses Pollinator Gardening, and the Horticulture Hour (to answer all your burning gardening questions) with JCRA Staff and Friends
–Educational displays and demonstrations, including Bluebirders of Wake County, Five County Beekeepers, Wake Audubon, Entomology Student Association and Herpetology Club at NCSU, North American Rock Garden Society, and more
–Family scavenger hunt
–Used gardening book sale

Raulston Blooms! proceeds help fund the daily operations of the Arboretum.
A prelude to Raulston Blooms! in-person plant sale, the Arboretum’s online plant sale concludes Friday, April 15, 2022.

On June 10 and 11, JC Raulston Arboretum and Juniper Level Botanic Garden combine resources to host the 4th Southeastern Plant Symposium and Rare Plant Auction. This year’s program is live and in-person in Raleigh’s vibrant downtown and internationally online.

“Southeastern Plant Symposium is designed for serious gardeners, people who love plants, nurserymen, nurserywomen, horticulturalists, botanists, plant nerds and plantaholics,” said Weathington. “It’s high-level, featuring many of the world’s top botanical and horticultural experts. If you want to learn about plants, we want you there.”

Expert presenters include:

–Eleftherios Dariotis (aka Liberto Dario on social media), Horticultural genius, Athens, Greece
–Dan Hinkley, Plantsman and founder, Gardens of Windcliff, and Director Emeritus and founder, Heronswood, Indianola and Kingston, WA
–Kelly D. Norris, Gardener, Curator, Artist, and Owner, Three Oaks Garden, nationally renowned garden designer, Des Moines, IA
–Peter Zale, Ph.D., Associate Director of Conservation, international plant explorer, Plant Breeding and Collections, Longwood Gardens, Kennett Square, PA
–Tony Avent, Founder and Co-owner, Juniper Level Botanic Garden and Plant Delights Nursery, Raleigh, NC
–Ian Caton, Co-owner, Wood Thrush Natives, Floyd, VA
–Shannon Currey, Marketing Manager, Hoffman Nursery, Rougemont, NC
–Janet Draper, Lead Horticulturist, Mary Livingston Ripley Garden, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC
–Richard Hawke, Plant Evaluation Manager, Chicago Botanic Garden, Chicago, IL
–Hayes Jackson, Urban Regional Extension Agent, Alabama A&M University, Huntsville, AL
–Adrienne Roethling, Executive Director, Paul J. Ciener Botanic Garden, Kernersville, NC

“We hope you’ll join us for two intense days of talks and the chance to visit both JC Raulston Arboretum and Juniper Level Botanic Garden,” said Tony Avent, Founder and Proprietor of Juniper Level Botanic Garden (JLBG). “You’ll have a chance to chat with the speakers and participate in the now famous, Rare Plant Auction.

“Many of the plants in the auction will not be found anywhere else in the world. We want to get plants out wherever we can, conserving them for science and for the benefit of all people.

“We promise you’ll leave with a head full of gardening and new plant information you’ve never imagined,” added Avent.

Southeastern Plant Symposium is presented by Proven Winners ColorChoice Flowering Shrubs.

Fundraising efforts operate under the auspices of The Endowment Fund of North Carolina State University, a 501(c)3 non-profit. Proceeds from the Southeastern Plant Symposium and Rare Plant Auction benefit the endowments of Juniper Level Botanic Garden (tax ID 56-6000756) and JC Raulston Arboretum (tax ID 56-6049304). Donors receive official receipts for contributions to the fund.
The Gathering Lawn – JC Raulston Arboretum, Raleigh, NC – Courtesy Robert B Butler



Contact:
Mark Weathington, Director
JC Raulston Arboretum
NC State University
919-513-7006

Mark_Weathington@NCSU.edu

Tony Avent, Founder
Juniper Level Botanic Garden
Raleigh, North Carolina
919-772-4794

Tony@PlantsDelight.com


Permission granted for reprint and redistribution

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2021
Southeastern Plant Symposium presents world’s top experts and Rare Plant Auction
Great Dixter House & Gardens ­– Courtesy Claire Takacs Photography
RALEIGH, NORTH CAROLINA – Seven of the world’s top botanical and horticultural experts will speak at the 2021 Southeastern Plant Symposium and Rare Plant Auction, according to event organizers Mark Weathington, Director of JC Raulston Arboretum at NC State University, and Tony Avent, Founder of Juniper Level Botanic Garden and Plant Delights Nursery.

Southeastern Plant Symposium will be online worldwide and available to registered attendees on Saturday, June 12, from 9 AM–5 PM. The registration fee is $75. This live presentation will be recorded and made available to all registrants. The Rare Plant Auction is free and opens online to attendees and the public June 3, at 3 PM, ending June 12, at 5 PM (all times are Eastern Daylight Time USA).

Featured speakers include:

–Fergus Garrett, one of the greatest garden designers and garden makers in the world, CEO and Head Gardener, Great Dixter House and Gardens, United Kingdom.

–Stephen Barstow, Extreme Salad Man, global expert on ornamental edibles, inventor of the term edimentals, author of Around the World in 80 Plants, leader of the Norwegian Seed Saver organization.

–Peter Zale, Ph.D., Associate Director, Conservation, Plant Breeding and Collections, Longwood Gardens, PA, USA.

–Kevin Conrad, Botanist, US National Arboretum, Woody Landscape Plant Germplasm Repository, National Plant Germplasm System, Beltsville, MD, USA.

–Irene Palmer, Research Specialist with Tom Ranney, Ph.D., North Carolina State University, experienced in a wide range of plant breeding with a focus on hydrangeas, camellias, crepe myrtles, azaleas, and more, NC, USA.

–Aaron Floden, Ph.D., Botanist, Missouri Botanic Garden, a world expert on plants with a focus on native American flora, MO, USA.

–Hans Hansen, Director, New Plant Development, Walters Gardens, Zeeland, MI, USA.

“The symposium is for horticulturalists, botanists, garden and nursery staff, serious gardeners, and those who want to learn more about plants,” said Weathington. “The presentations will be filled with information and beautiful visuals. Attendees can ask questions during the presentations.”

“The Rare Plant Auction will feature a collection of plants not found anywhere else in the world,” added Avent. “Even the most rabid plant collector will find many things in the auction they’ve never seen or heard of before. There is no other source for many of these plants. People may have searched for years and never found these plants – it is that rare.”

“This is an amazing opportunity to hear many top experts in a single event,” said Weathington. “One of our speakers is Fergus Garrett, CEO and Head Gardner at Great Dixter House & Gardens in the United Kingdom. Fergus is one of the best garden designers and garden makers in the world and will talk about the importance of color, foliage, texture, repetition, structure, experimentation, as well as informality and movement in putting plants together.”

“Known as the Extreme Salad Man, Stephen Barstow is a world authority on ornamental edibles and invented the term edimentals,” added Avent. “Barstow authored the book Around the World in 80 Plants and will make you look at your garden differently – thinking about the ornamentals you can grow, enjoy, cook, and eat.”

“Peter Zale of Longwood Gardens in Pennsylvania is a true genius. He is destined to have a huge impact on both the science of botany and the art of horticulture,” said Weathington. “His work with orchids has been significant to JC Raulston Arboretum, as he has grown out most of the JC Raulston Arboretum Asian orchid seed collections for us.

“Kevin Conrad, a botanist with the US National Arboretum and USDA in Maryland, is responsible for the conservation of over 5,000 taxa of woody landscape plants and the development of the Woody Landscape Plant Germplasm Repository. Their focus is long-term preservation and technology transfer for use in research and crop improvement. Kevin works closely with botanic gardens to help conserve genetics. JC Raulston Arboretum holds two national collections – redbuds and magnolia.

“Irene Palmer is a North Carolina State University researcher working with Tom Ranney, Ph.D., on breeding a wide variety of plants. Irene also focuses on hydrangeas, camellias, crepe myrtles, azaleas, and other southeastern garden favorites to help set new standards.

“Aaron Floden, a botanist for the Missouri Botanic Garden, focuses heavily on native American flora. He is also a world expert in other plants such as Polygonatum and its relatives. Much like Peter Zale, Aaron is a keen scientist, a field researcher, and a great gardener. No matter how often I hear him speak, I am always astounded by something new – often something growing in my own state,” said Weathington.

“Hans Hansen, Director of New Plant Development at Walters Gardens in Michigan, is the top perennial breeder in the world today in my opinion,” added Avent. “His plants are found in almost every garden center in the country. Hans breeds for Proven Winners. So, pretty much every Proven Winners perennial grown in the last decade was probably his breeding.”

Proceeds from the Southeastern Plant Symposium and Rare Plant Auction benefit the endowments of Juniper Level Botanic Garden and JC Raulston Arboretum at NC State University. “We have parallel missions and visions of what gardens and plants are for,” said Weathington. “Plants are critical assets. We are growing them and conserving them for science and for the benefit of all people. In our home state, ornamental plants are one of the biggest agricultural products.”
Edimentals – Courtesy of The Extreme Salad Man, Stephen Barstow


Fundraising efforts for Juniper Level Botanic Garden (tax ID 56-6000756) and JC Raulston Arboretum (tax ID 56-6049304) operate under the auspices of The Endowment Fund of North Carolina State University, a 501(c)3 non-profit. Donors receive official receipts for contributions to the fund. 

Contact:

Mark Weathington, Director
JC Raulston Arboretum
NC State University
919-513-7006

Tony Avent, Founder
Juniper Level Botanic Garden
Raleigh, North Carolina
919-772-4794

Robert B Butler – Communications & Public Relations

Permission granted for reprint and redistribution

#SoutheasternPlantSymposium #JuniperLevelBotanicGarden #JCRaulstonArboretum #NCStateUniversity #Horticulture #MarkWeathington #TonyAvent #Botany #Horticulture #GreatDixter #FergusGarrett #StephenBarstow #Edimentals #PeterZale #LongwoodGardens #KevinConrad #USNationalArboretum #IrenePalmer #TomRanney #AaronFloden #MissouriBotanicGarden #HansHansen #WaltersGardens
First Southeastern Plant Symposium to launch in North Carolina June 7-8, 2019
RALEIGH, NORTH CAROLINA – Colleagues Mark Weathington, Director of JC Raulston Arboretum at NCSU, and Tony Avent, Founder of Juniper Level Botanic Garden and Plant Delights Nursery, will launch the first Southeastern Plant Symposium in Raleigh, North Carolina, June 7 and 8.

“The Southeastern Plant Symposium is an incredible opportunity for professionals and non-professionals to hear many of the world’s renown plant speakers in a single event,” said Avent. “We are bringing in the most knowledgeable and most passionate plant lovers to speak.”

“There are many great new plants entering the market from plant breeders, from explorations around the world, and from collections of botanic gardens,” added Weathington. “We’ll be talking about cutting edge plants at the forefront of new trends in gardening and new plant selections that reinvent how we think about gardening.”

“The Symposium will provide accurate information from people who know and grow the plants, as opposed to the frequently incorrect information that’s perpetuated online,” said Avent. “Our speakers will cut through the new plant clutter to expose attendees to what is truly exceptional.”

Southeastern Plant Symposium speakers include:

John Grimshaw, Director, The Yorkshire Arboretum, Castle Howard, York, UK
Scott McMahan, Manager, International Plant Exploration, Atlanta Botanical Garden, Atlanta, Georgia
Ted Stephens, Owner, Nurseries Caroliniana, Augusta, South Carolina
David Creech, Professor Emeritus, SFA State University, and Director of Stephen F. Austin Gardens. Nacogdoches, Texas
Julie Moore, Office of Endangered Species, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Washington, DC
Tony Avent, Founder, Juniper Level Botanic Garden and Plant Delights Nursery in Raleigh, North Carolina
Adam Black, Director of Horticulture, Peckerwood Gardens, Hempstead, Texas
Leanne Kenealy, Plant Breeding and Nursery Technician, JC Raulston Arboretum, Raleigh, North Carolina
Buddy Lee, Director of Plant Innovations, Plant Development Services (PDSI), Loxley, Alabama
Guy Meacham, New Plant Development Manager, J. Frank Schmidt & Son Company, Boring, Oregon
Tom Ranney, JC Raulston Distinguished Professor and Mountain Crop Improvement Lab, Mountain Horticultural Crops Research and Extension Center, NC State University, Fletcher, North Carolina
Kim Shearer, Tree and Shrub Breeder and Manager of New Plant Development Program, The Morton Arboretum, Lisle, Illinois
Tim Wood, Product Development & Marketing Manager, Spring Meadow Nursery, Grand Haven, Michigan
Donglin Zhang, Professor, Institute of Plant Breeding, Genetics, and Genomics, University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia

“Targeted attendees include, private plant collectors, landscape architects and designers, nursery and botanic garden staff, members of HOA landscape design committees, city and county horticulturists, parks staff, new homeowners who want to create a distinctive landscape design, and members of the public who are passionate about new and different plants,” according to Avent.

“Horticulture and landscape plants are among our most basic needs after food and shelter,” Weathington said. “Study after study shows that stress levels go down when we are surrounded by plants, and concentration goes up. Nature Deficit Disorder and Plant Blindness are climbing because we are increasingly disconnected from the natural world. Gardening is one of the best ways to combat these modern problems.”

“Plants are great at sequestering carbon, so more plants in the world are always better,” added Avent. “The New York Times recently reprinted one of Oliver Sacks’ great articles on why ornamental plants are essential.”

“North Carolina’s Triangle is one of the greatest centers for horticulture in the country,” said Weathington. “Juniper Level Botanic Garden and JC Raulston Arboretum will be open for Symposium attendees. Sarah P. Duke Gardens in Durham is a great place to visit as is the North Carolina Botanical Garden in Chapel Hill.”

The host hotel for the Southeastern Plant Symposium is the Embassy Suites by Hilton near Research Triangle Park in Cary, North Carolina.


Leanne Kenealy, Plant Breeding and Nursery Technician, JC Raulston Arboretum, Raleigh, North Carolina
Scott McMahan, Manager, International Plant Exploration, Atlanta Botanical Garden, Atlanta, Georgia
Julie Moore, Office of Endangered Species, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Washington, DC
Tom Ranney, JC Raulston Distinguished Professor and Mountain Crop Improvement Lab, Mountain Horticultural Crops Research and Extension Center, NC State University, Fletcher, North Carolina
Tim Wood, Product Development & Marketing Manager, Spring Meadow Nursery, Grand Haven, Michigan
Tony Avent, Founder, Juniper Level Botanic Garden and Plant Delights Nursery in Raleigh, North Carolina
Mark Weathington, Director, JC Raulston Arboretum at North Carolina State University
Contact:

Mark Weathington, Director
JC Raulston Arboretum
NC State University
919-513-7006

Tony Avent, Founder
Juniper Level Botanic Garden
Raleigh, North Carolina
919-772-4794



Robert B Butler

Permission granted for reprint and redistribution

#SoutheasternPlantSymposium #JuniperLevelBotanicGarden #JCRaulstonArboretum #Raleigh #NorthCarolina #DukeGardens #NCBotanicalGarden #Horticulture #MarkWeathington #TonyAvent
#YorkshireArboretum #AtlantaBotanicalGarden #NurseriesCaroliniana #SFAGardens #USFishandWildlife #PeckerwoodGardens #PlantDevelopmentServices #JFrankSchmidt #TheMortonArboretum #SpringMeadowNursery #UniversityofGeorgia #EmbassySuitesHilton
#Cary
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