By Debbie Brown
The Patrick County Master Gardeners are excited for the opportunity to welcome Amanda Wilkins as a keynote speaker at their Spring Gardening Symposium in March. Ms. Wilkins comes to us with a wealth of knowledge as well as a huge passion for plants and nature. She believes education and appreciation by the public are some of the most effective ways to conserve the environment and promote the field of horticulture. Nothing brings her more joy than to hear stories about how gardens have influenced someone’s life. Ms. Wilkins is currently fulfilling a dream of working in a public garden by serving as the curator at Juniper Level Botanical Garden located at Plant Delights Nursery in Raleigh, NC. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Horticultural Science from North Carolina State University (Raleigh, NC) and her Master’s degree in the Biodiversity and Taxonomy of Plants from the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh and the University of Edinburgh (Edinburgh, Scotland).
When speaking about her symposium topic Interesting Plants for the Southeastern Garden, Ms. Wilkins shares, “This isn’t going to be just another “litany of plants” talk. We’re going to take a walk through a few botanic gardens and backyards, looking at interesting plants that could also be at home in your garden in western Virginia. We’ll study the complete landscape of trees, shrubs, perennials and annuals, and hear some fun stories along the way. Let’s add another level of depth to those catalogues and online shopping sites and look at some REAL plants.”
The Spring Gardening Symposium, Mastering Your Garden will be held at Reynolds Homestead, 463 Homestead Lane, Critz, Virginia on March 14, 2020 from 8:30 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. A fun and interesting program is planned with three keynote speakers, lunch, vendors, and door prizes. Anyone wishing to register may mail their contact information along with the registration fee of $35.00 ($30.00 before February 15th) payable to Patrick County Cooperative Extension to: Master Your Garden c/o Glenda Cobbler, 932 Palmetto School Road, Stuart, Virginia 24171.