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Speaker Series

Saturday, April 29


What's Hot and New for 2017

Time: Saturday, April 29 at 9:30am
Speaker: John Duncan

John Duncan 

Come and indulge yourself in what's exciting and new in the world of horticulture. John Duncan takes a passionate look at the hot new plants of 2017 and some of his favorites and over looked gems!


5 Tips to a Better Life

Time: Saturday, April 29 at 11:00am
Speaker: Donna Balzer

Donna Balzer

Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is - Five Tips to Grow a Better Life

Growing a better garden and creating a perfect life are like hugs and kisses - they just go together. If you garden and you are limited to doing one thing, you must build better soil. But if you can do five things, you can build soil, add garden covers, plant vertical and pop-up gardens, juggle planting dates to stagger harvest and start saving the world one honeybee at a time. Get inspired to grow more today.


Perennial Plant of the Year 

Time: Saturday, April 29 at 1:00pm
Speaker: Jane Reksten

Jane Reksten 

For each of the last ten years, the Calgary Horticultural Society's Perennial Plant of the Year Committee has nominated an outstanding perennial plant to promote to Society members and gardeners in general. The committee consists of 12 individuals representing the landscape and greenhouse industries, public gardens and serious home gardeners. Using their combined experience and knowledge, each year's plant can be relied upon to be hardy to the Calgary area, create superior value in the landscape and be readily available at local garden centers at a reasonable cost. Join us for a presentation that will profile the last ten years of exceptional, winning perennials. Hosted by Jane Reksten, Manager Botanic Gardens and Greenhouses at Olds College and Committee Chair, a panel of committee members will add their advice and comments bringing these plants to life and inspiring you to add them to your own landscape.

Biological Look at Soils

Time: Saturday, April 29 at 2:00pm
Speaker: Mike Dorion


You want to grow some plants, whether to admire or to eat, but you want to do it right. Where do you start? Use compost, someone says. So you start looking and everybody has compost. Is one compost like every other compost? That is what we will break down. Let's dive into what is out there, their quality and what they are best used for. Also the true test, put them under the microscope to see the little critters involved.


What's New & Exciting in the World of Insects & How It Can Make Your Garden Experience Better 

Time: Saturday, April 29 at 3:00pm
Speaker: Dr. Ken Fry, Coordinator, Horticulture Entomology Instructor, School of Animal Science & Horticulture, Olds College


The session will address the latest findings on ecologically-based pest management, the status of pollinators and how to best conserve and recruit them, and innovative tools for diagnostics and garden management.


Making It Count - Landscape Essentials for Winning Yards and Gardens

Time: Saturday, April 29 at 4:00 pm
Speaker: Tricia Ingram 

Tricia Ingram

This is the talk you have been waiting for. Designer and head grower Tricia Ingram takes the mystery out of amazing landscapes. With over 20 years of experience designing, advising on, and installing both residential and commercial landscapes, Tricia will walk you through the key aspects of taking a landscape from simply good to award-winning. Moving through dozens of slides of gorgeous, high-performing landscapes and gardens in the Southern Alberta area, Tricia will cover the design principals of functionality, form, and aesthetics, and then further drill down on the equally important aspects of environmental enhancement, budgetary factors, and project timelines. Attendees will come away with a workable framework for getting the most out of their eco-friendly, stunning and functional landscapes on their own budget and on their own time. Although geared to a more advanced gardener, this seminar will have something for everyone, taking the beginner to advanced and the advanced to pro. It is recommended that attendees bring pen and paper to jot down ideas and notes. This is an information-packed seminar, educational and inspiring!

Sunday, April 30

Fusion Gardening

Time: Sunday, April 30 at 10:00am
Speaker: Jim Hole


'Never before has the futureā€¦so rapidly become the past.'

Fusion gardening reflects a shift in attitude among many of today's gardeners. We still enjoy all of the same things that our parents and grandparents enjoyed nurturing their gardens, but today we have greater expectations when we put a seed into the ground or transplant a tree into our yards.

Today the environment, food security, container gardening - and more - are fused together into one package. Juggling all of these aspects of modern gardening isn't all that difficult if you understand some of the basics, and separate myth from fact.

Jim will explain fusion gardening, explore some myths, and show how it works in your yard whether you are a seasoned pro or a complete novice.


Native Plants in the Garden

Time: Sunday, April 30 at 1:00pm
Speaker: June Flanagan

June Flanagan 

Join June Flanagan for a preview of prairie wildflowers, as she shares her passion for growing our native species and shows you how to bring the beauty of Alberta's native plants into your backyard. Learn simple ways to successfully germinate seeds, along with plenty of tips to help you find, choose, grow and combine native species with your favourite garden plants. Cultivating our natural heritage is a great way to celebrate Canada's 150th birthday. 


Fruitful Thinking 

Time: Sunday, April 30 at 2:00pm
Speakers: Luke Kimmel & Adrian Buckley

LukeKimmel        AdrianBuckley

Imagine walking out your door to be greeted by a beautiful and low-maintenance garden that is filled with your favourite fruits, herbs, flowers and more. Yet this garden is even more than meets the eye! It is an edible forest garden, designed with the principles of natural ecosystems in mind, which means you save time on watering, weeding, managing pests, and fertilizing. Come out and learn what amazing perennial fruits, edibles and medicinals you can grow in Calgary, and how you can do this most effectively by utilizing the world changing and land healing approach of edible forest gardening.


Beauty on a Budget

Time: Sunday, April 30 at 3:00 pm
Speaker: Kath Smyth

Kath Smyth

New to gardening? Want some tips and tricks to increase success in your yard? Have your gardening questions answered and learn the basics for beautiful landscaping in Calgary's specific climate at a Beauty on a Budget talk, presented by Kath Smyth in partnership with The City of Calgary. Discover how to create your own stunning yard from the ground up.