Spring Garden Expo
When: 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Saturday
Where: Chicopee Woods Agricultural Center, 1855 Calvary Church Road, Gainesville
How much: Free; garden items available for sale
More info: 770-535-8293
It’s spring! Time to get planting.
But before you get your hands dirty, you can stop by the Hall County Master Gardeners’ Spring Garden Expo, set for this Friday and Saturday at the Chicopee Woods Agricultural Center in Gainesville, where you can learn what you need to know to make your garden flourish — and pick up some plants, too.
Mike Carson, vice president of the Master Gardeners and organizer of the expo, said the event will again feature seminars; three on Saturday will focus on raised vegetable gardens, conifers and flower arranging.
Carson said there will be 61 vendors at the expo, "probably the most ever."
"We’ll have everything from garden tools, Kombi tools— Mr. Richard Fugel has sort of developed his own line of garden tools, which are fairly unique — but we’ll have new garden tools, antique garden tools. We’ll have garden metal artwork — mosquitoes as tall as we are — and all sorts of plants."
Carson said spring is a good time to plant annuals and vegetables such as tomatoes and beans.
"I’m hoping that we’re going to have some folks out there, too, with blueberry bushes. A lot of folks ask for blueberries, and that’s a good thing to get in the ground now," he said.
But, he cautioned, folks should wait until after the danger of frost has passed to put plants in the ground.
"Probably the most common thing folks want to put into the ground are tomatoes. But tomatoes, beans, things like that, are great to plant," he said. "Once the frost has passed and the soil warms up a little bit. We typically look about mid-April as being the time that the frost has passed, but with the kind of weather we’ve had this winter, who knows?"
Carson said the expo will also feature native azaleas, rhododendrons, conifers and "all kinds of perennials and annuals."
The spring expo and a fall expo, scheduled for September, are annual events that raise money for the Hall County Master Gardeners, who use the funds to continue volunteer projects that Carson said benefit Hall County.
"The Hall County Master Gardeners gave back to Hall County some 18,000 volunteer hours last year," Carson said, adding that the group was the leader in volunteer hours for the state of Georgia.
"That’s for all kinds of things, like seminars, like Junior Master Gardeners, like Gardens on Green at the school board property, working at Wilshire Park, putting in learning trails for kids ... helping (Habitat for Humanity) plant shrubs."