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The North Carolina Arboretum Hosts Speaking of Gardening Symposium

ASHEVILLE, NC – The North Carolina Arboretum proudly hosts the Speaking of Gardening symposium on August 26 and 27, bringing the world’s gardens to Asheville. The annual symposium is a popular event for horticulture professionals and enthusiasts, providing an unparalleled experience for participants. This year’s event is no exception, featuring speakers from the United States and the United Kingdom presenting lectures on creative design and cutting-edge plants. Program topics will explore a Dublin urban garden and the great American garden, Chanticleer, through their gardener creators.

Other lectures will include insight into plant exploration and development of the new Paul J. Ciener Botanical Garden in North Carolina, as well as gardening trends including small shrubs in the perennial border. There will be book signings and—new this year—live and silent plant auctions showcasing rare and unusual plants and a plant giveaway.

Speakers scheduled to appear at the Speaking of Gardening symposium include: Helen Dillon, Keynote Speaker Helen Dillon is a gardener, author, broadcaster, and traveler. The Dillon Garden in Dublin, Ireland, where she has gardened for 38 years, is open to the public and has been featured in magazines worldwide. Not one to be daunted by a plant that doesn’t perform in the garden, Helen challenges gardeners with her presentation, “Dig it Up and Throw it Away.” Helen will be signing copies of her most recent book, “Down to Earth with Helen Dillon.” Bill Thomas, Executive Director and Head Gardener, Chanticleer Bill Thomas will lead participants on a visual tour and behind-the-scenes look at what the Washington Post calls “one of the most interesting and edgy public gardens in America.”

Covering 35 acres, Chanticleer was the estate of the Rosengarten family. Open to the public only since 1993, the garden is known for its homemade furniture, plant combinations, containers, textures, and colors, often relying on foliage more than flowers. Stephanie Cohen, Author, Lecturer and Designer Stephanie Cohen taught herbaceous plants and perennial design at Temple University for over 20 years and is the former founder and director of the Landscape Arboretum at Temple University. She is a contributing editor for Fine Gardening, American Nurseryman, and American Beauties.

In 2010, she was named Garden Communicator of the Year by the Perennial Plant Association.
Todd Lasseigne, Executive Director, Oklahoma Centennial Botanical Garden, former Executive Director, Paul J. Ciener Botanical Garden Dr. Lasseigne will discuss the creative energies and synergies involved in planning a new public garden and stocking it with interesting plants. The Paul J. Ciener Botanical Garden, located in Kernersville, NC, is celebrating its Grand Opening Year in 2011. From botanical exploits in Japan to home-found natives here in North Carolina, many exciting new plants are finding their way into the garden displays at Ciener Botanical Garden.

Mr. Lasseigne recently accepted the Executive Director position at the Oklahoma Centennial Botanical Garden in Tulsa. Speaking of Gardening is supported in part by our Community Partners, Asheville Hilton Biltmore Park and B.B. Barns, The Garden Company. Registration for the symposium is $145 for Arboretum members and $170 for non-members. The fee includes lectures, book signings, lunches and snacks for both days. Seating is limited and registration is required. For more information, or to register, call (828) 665-2492 or visit www.ncarboretum.org. The mission of The North Carolina Arboretum is to cultivate connections between people and plants.

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