Highlights

Highlights
Highlights

Highlights

Learn from the experts and check out Garden Expo's newest features! Don’t miss these Garden Expo special guests: Juan Gonzalez-Torres, Mr Plant Geek (Michael Perry), Amanda Thomsen, Kerry Ann Mendez, Larry Meiller, Melinda Myers and Inga Witscher. Click on each image below for more details.

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Story Slam
Juan Gonzalez
Michael Perry

New Event! Resiliency in Gardening Story Slam
Before Garden Expo! Free Thursday Garden Expo Prelude Event – Arrive early to receive a free Garden Expo ticket!

Come share and hear great stories from fellow gardeners at a free Garden Expo kick-off event at The Frequency (121 W. Main St., Madison) on the Thursday night before Garden Expo. In partnership with Allen Centennial Garden and Madison Story Slam, the theme for the evening’s stories will be “resiliency in gardening.” Headlined by Michael Perry, the UK’s Mr Plant Geek and Kiss My Aster’s Amanda Thomsen, and hosted by Adam Rostad of Madison Story Slam. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and the event will begin at 7 p.m. Sign up to tell a 5–7 minute story by sending a message to the Madison Story Slam Facebook page. The first 50 people in the door will receive a Friday night Garden Expo admission ticket!

Juan Gonzalez-Torres, Los Abuelos Farley Farm
10:30 a.m. Sunday; Location: Mendota 6-7

Juan Gonzalez-Torres is a local farmer and owner of Los Abuelos Farley Farm. He will speak about the beginning of his farm business and how it evolved from Puebla, Mexico to Madison. Juan began his farming career in Puebla, learning how to cultivate traditional crops like epazote and papalo. After relocating to Wisconsin, his farm business has grown to be an integral piece of the local food movement. Juan will give his presentation in Spanish and it will be translated into English.

Mr Plant Geek (Michael Perry)
2:45 p.m. Friday; Location: Mendota 1-2
6:30 p.m. Friday; Location: Mendota 1-2
9:15 a.m. Saturday; Location: Mendota 1-2
12 p.m. Saturday; Location Mendota 4

In 2015 the United Kingdom’s Michael Perry was named one of the top 20 most influential people in the gardening world by the Sunday Times. He has introduced hundreds of plants to UK gardens, ranging from Climbing Pelargoniums to Ground Cover Lilies, the TomTato and Egg and Chips plants. Michael keeps busy traveling the world in search of new plants and is very active on social media. In this exciting new addition to Garden Expo, he will present a “weird and wacky plant show” with plants that will leave you shocked, amazed, excited and confused. He’ll also provide a presentation about traditional UK kitchen gardens, and a session about new, different and unusual plants.

Amanda Thomsen
Kerry Ann Mendez
Gardening Shame

Amanda Thomsen, Kiss My Aster
5:15 p.m. Friday; Location: Mendota 1-2
12 p.m. Saturday; Location: Mendota 4
3:30 p.m. Saturday; Location: Mendota 1-2

Loud and fun, Amanda Thomsen landscapes by day and blogs at night. Her blog, Kiss My Aster, has simultaneously alienated and enraptured people for more than a decade. Amanda is also author of Kiss My Aster: A Graphic Guide to Creating a Fantastic Yard Totally Tailored to You, an irreverent and interactive guide to designing an outdoor space. She is empowering a whole new generation of gardeners to take control of their landscapes. Amanda will provide a “Quick and Dirty” Gardening 101 session, as well as a presentation on 150 ways to create a fantastic yard totally tailored to you.

Kerry Ann Mendez
10:45 a.m. Saturday; Location: Mendota 4
1:15 p.m. Saturday; Location: Mendota 4

Kerry Ann Mendez is an award-winning garden educator, author and design consultant based in southern Maine. Her latest book, The Budget-Wise Gardener, will be released in February. Kerry will present a session with money-saving tips for purchasing plants and designing your garden, as well as a session about simplified gardening for time-pressed and maturing gardeners.

TED-inspired “Gardening Shame” Talk
12 p.m. Saturday; Location: Mendota 4

This fast-paced TED-inspired talk will feature three presenters, who will each speak for 20 minutes on the theme “Gardening Shame.” Presenters include UK’s Michael Perry (Mr Plant Geek), Amanda Thomsen (Kiss My Aster) and Ben Futa (Allen Centennial Garden).

Aquascaping Championships
Larry Meiller
Melinda Myers

Returning Due to Popular Demand! Great Lakes Aquascaping Championships
All day Friday and Saturday; Location: Exhibition Hall
10:30 a.m. Sunday awards presentation; Location: Exhibition Hall

Aquascaping is the craft of creating an artful underwater landscape. During the Great Lakes Aquascaping Championships, hosted by Madison Area Aquatic Hobbyists, contestants will create an aquarium display on site at Garden Expo. The competition features both small- and large-tank divisions. Watch participants build their displays Friday and Saturday, and check out the awards presentation at 10:30 a.m. Sunday.

WPR’s Larry Meiller, Garden Talk
9:30 a.m. Saturday; Location: Mendota 4

Larry Meiller, host of Wisconsin Public Radio’s Garden Talk, teams up with horticulture experts Lisa Johnson and Brian Hudelson to answer all your gardening questions.

Gardening Expert Melinda Myers
11:45 a.m. Saturday; Location: Mendota 1-2
12:45 p.m. Sunday; Location: Mendota 1-2

Nationally known gardening expert, TV/radio host, author & columnist Melinda Myers has more than 30 years of horticulture experience and has written more than 20 gardening books. Melinda is a columnist and contributing editor for Birds & Blooms and Wisconsin Gardening magazines, and previously hosted seven seasons of Great Lakes Gardener on PBS. In 2017, Myers was inducted into the national Association for Garden Communicators Hall of Fame. Melinda will present about how to make a big impact in a small space garden, and she’ll also share a session with tips on how to put your garden and containers to work for you all year long. Melinda’s presentations are made possible with support from American Transmission Company/Grow Smart.

Inga Witscher
Craft Cocktails
Farmers’ Market

Inga Witscher, Around the Farm Table
4-6 p.m. Friday; Location WPT booth
10 a.m.-noon Saturday; Location: WPT booth
12:30 p.m. Saturday; Location: Demo Stage B

Inga Witscher, host of Wisconsin Public Television’s Around the Farm Table, will greet visitors at the Wisconsin Public Television booth 4-6 p.m. Friday and 10 a.m-noon Saturday. Inga will also host a stage demonstration on Saturday all about fondue. Learn about the history of this cheesy classic, how to prepare it, and you might even be inspired to make a special fondue meal for your valentine.

Botanical-Themed Craft Cocktails in the Central Garden
Friday 4-8 p.m.; Location: WNLA Central Garden Display

Join us 4-8 p.m. Friday in the Garden Expo Central Garden for botanical-themed craft cocktails developed by mixologists from Graze, a farm-to-table Madison restaurant. While you sip on your cocktail, take a stroll through the beautiful plant and flower display put together by members of the Wisconsin Nursery and Landscaping Association (WNLA).

Farmers’ Market
10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday; Location: Atrium

Back by popular demand, the Farmers’ Market will return to Garden Expo 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday in the Atrium. Visit nearly two dozen local vendors to stock up on pickles, preserves, artisan cheeses, hot sauces, honey and more.

Story Slam
Juan Gonzalez

New Event! Resiliency in Gardening Story Slam
Before Garden Expo! Free Thursday Garden Expo Prelude Event – Arrive early to receive a free Garden Expo ticket!

Come share and hear great stories from fellow gardeners at a free Garden Expo kick-off event at The Frequency (121 W. Main St., Madison) on the Thursday night before Garden Expo. In partnership with Allen Centennial Garden and Madison Story Slam, the theme for the evening’s stories will be “resiliency in gardening.” Headlined by Michael Perry, the UK’s Mr Plant Geek and Kiss My Aster’s Amanda Thomsen, and hosted by Adam Rostad of Madison Story Slam. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and the event will begin at 7 p.m. Sign up to tell a 5–7 minute story by sending a message to the Madison Story Slam Facebook page. The first 50 people in the door will receive a Friday night Garden Expo admission ticket!

Juan Gonzalez-Torres, Los Abuelos Farley Farm
10:30 a.m. Sunday; Location: Mendota 6-7

Juan Gonzalez-Torres is a local farmer and owner of Los Abuelos Farley Farm. He will speak about the beginning of his farm business and how it evolved from Puebla, Mexico to Madison. Juan began his farming career in Puebla, learning how to cultivate traditional crops like epazote and papalo. After relocating to Wisconsin, his farm business has grown to be an integral piece of the local food movement. Juan will give his presentation in Spanish and it will be translated into English.

Michael Perry
Amanda Thomsen

Mr Plant Geek (Michael Perry)
2:45 p.m. Friday; Location: Mendota 1-2
6:30 p.m. Friday; Location: Mendota 1-2
9:15 a.m. Saturday; Location: Mendota 1-2
12 p.m. Saturday; Location Mendota 4

In 2015 the United Kingdom’s Michael Perry was named one of the top 20 most influential people in the gardening world by the Sunday Times. He has introduced hundreds of plants to UK gardens, ranging from Climbing Pelargoniums to Ground Cover Lilies, the TomTato and Egg and Chips plants. Michael keeps busy traveling the world in search of new plants and is very active on social media. In this exciting new addition to Garden Expo, he will present a “weird and wacky plant show” with plants that will leave you shocked, amazed, excited and confused. He’ll also provide a presentation about traditional UK kitchen gardens, and a session about new, different and unusual plants.

Amanda Thomsen, Kiss My Aster
5:15 p.m. Friday; Location: Mendota 1-2
12 p.m. Saturday; Location: Mendota 4
3:30 p.m. Saturday; Location: Mendota 1-2

Loud and fun, Amanda Thomsen landscapes by day and blogs at night. Her blog, Kiss My Aster, has simultaneously alienated and enraptured people for more than a decade. Amanda is also author of Kiss My Aster: A Graphic Guide to Creating a Fantastic Yard Totally Tailored to You, an irreverent and interactive guide to designing an outdoor space. She is empowering a whole new generation of gardeners to take control of their landscapes. Amanda will provide a “Quick and Dirty” Gardening 101 session, as well as a presentation on 150 ways to create a fantastic yard totally tailored to you.

Kerry Ann Mendez
Gardening Shame

Kerry Ann Mendez
10:45 a.m. Saturday; Location: Mendota 4
1:15 p.m. Saturday; Location: Mendota 4

Kerry Ann Mendez is an award-winning garden educator, author and design consultant based in southern Maine. Her latest book, The Budget-Wise Gardener, will be released in February. Kerry will present a session with money-saving tips for purchasing plants and designing your garden, as well as a session about simplified gardening for time-pressed and maturing gardeners.

TED-inspired “Gardening Shame” Talk
12 p.m. Saturday; Location: Mendota 4

This fast-paced TED-inspired talk will feature three presenters, who will each speak for 20 minutes on the theme “Gardening Shame.” Presenters include UK’s Michael Perry (Mr Plant Geek), Amanda Thomsen (Kiss My Aster) and Ben Futa (Allen Centennial Garden).

Aquascaping
Larry Meiller

Returning Due to Popular Demand! Great Lakes Aquascaping Championships
All day Friday and Saturday; Location: Exhibition Hall
10:30 a.m. Sunday awards presentation; Location: Exhibition Hall

Aquascaping is the craft of creating an artful underwater landscape. During the Great Lakes Aquascaping Championships, hosted by Madison Area Aquatic Hobbyists, contestants will create an aquarium display on site at Garden Expo. The competition features both small- and large-tank divisions. Watch participants build their displays Friday and Saturday, and check out the awards presentation at 10:30 a.m. Sunday.

WPR’s Larry Meiller, Garden Talk
9:30 a.m. Saturday; Location: Mendota 4

Larry Meiller, host of Wisconsin Public Radio’s Garden Talk, teams up with horticulture experts Lisa Johnson and Brian Hudelson to answer all your gardening questions.

Melinda Myers
Inga Witscher

Gardening Expert Melinda Myers
11:45 a.m. Saturday; Location: Mendota 1-2
12:45 p.m. Sunday; Location: Mendota 1-2

Nationally known gardening expert, TV/radio host, author & columnist Melinda Myers has more than 30 years of horticulture experience and has written more than 20 gardening books. Melinda is a columnist and contributing editor for Birds & Blooms and Wisconsin Gardening magazines, and previously hosted seven seasons of Great Lakes Gardener on PBS. In 2017, Myers was inducted into the national Association for Garden Communicators Hall of Fame. Melinda will present about how to make a big impact in a small space garden, and she’ll also share a session with tips on how to put your garden and containers to work for you all year long. Melinda’s presentations are made possible with support from American Transmission Company/Grow Smart.

Inga Witscher, Around the Farm Table
4-6 p.m. Friday; Location WPT booth
10 a.m.-noon Saturday; Location: WPT booth
12:30 p.m. Saturday; Location: Demo Stage B

Inga Witscher, host of Wisconsin Public Television’s Around the Farm Table, will greet visitors at the Wisconsin Public Television booth 4-6 p.m. Friday and 10 a.m-noon Saturday. Inga will also host a stage demonstration on Saturday all about fondue. Learn about the history of this cheesy classic, how to prepare it, and you might even be inspired to make a special fondue meal for your valentine.

Craft Cocktails
Farmers’ Market

Botanical-Themed Craft Cocktails in the Central Garden
Friday 4-8 p.m.; Location: WNLA Central Garden Display

Join us 4-8 p.m. Friday in the Garden Expo Central Garden for botanical-themed craft cocktails developed by mixologists from Graze, a farm-to-table Madison restaurant. While you sip on your cocktail, take a stroll through the beautiful plant and flower display put together by members of the Wisconsin Nursery and Landscaping Association (WNLA).

Farmers’ Market
10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday; Location: Atrium

Back by popular demand, the Farmers’ Market will return to Garden Expo 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday in the Atrium. Visit nearly two dozen local vendors to stock up on pickles, preserves, artisan cheeses, hot sauces, honey and more.

Story Slam

New Event! Resiliency in Gardening Story Slam
Before Garden Expo! Free Thursday Garden Expo Prelude Event – Arrive early to receive a free Garden Expo ticket!

Come share and hear great stories from fellow gardeners at a free Garden Expo kick-off event at The Frequency (121 W. Main St., Madison) on the Thursday night before Garden Expo. In partnership with Allen Centennial Garden and Madison Story Slam, the theme for the evening’s stories will be “resiliency in gardening.” Headlined by Michael Perry, the UK’s Mr Plant Geek and Kiss My Aster’s Amanda Thomsen, and hosted by Adam Rostad of Madison Story Slam. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and the event will begin at 7 p.m. Sign up to tell a 5–7 minute story by sending a message to the Madison Story Slam Facebook page. The first 50 people in the door will receive a Friday night Garden Expo admission ticket!

Juan Gonzalez

Juan Gonzalez-Torres, Los Abuelos Farley Farm
10:30 a.m. Sunday; Location: Mendota 6-7

Juan Gonzalez-Torres is a local farmer and owner of Los Abuelos Farley Farm. He will speak about the beginning of his farm business and how it evolved from Puebla, Mexico to Madison. Juan began his farming career in Puebla, learning how to cultivate traditional crops like epazote and papalo. After relocating to Wisconsin, his farm business has grown to be an integral piece of the local food movement. Juan will give his presentation in Spanish and it will be translated into English.

Michael Perry

Mr Plant Geek (Michael Perry)
2:45 p.m. Friday; Location: Mendota 1-2
6:30 p.m. Friday; Location: Mendota 1-2
9:15 a.m. Saturday; Location: Mendota 1-2
12 p.m. Saturday; Location Mendota 4

In 2015 the United Kingdom’s Michael Perry was named one of the top 20 most influential people in the gardening world by the Sunday Times. He has introduced hundreds of plants to UK gardens, ranging from Climbing Pelargoniums to Ground Cover Lilies, the TomTato and Egg and Chips plants. Michael keeps busy traveling the world in search of new plants and is very active on social media. In this exciting new addition to Garden Expo, he will present a “weird and wacky plant show” with plants that will leave you shocked, amazed, excited and confused. He’ll also provide a presentation about traditional UK kitchen gardens, and a session about new, different and unusual plants.

Amanda Thomsen

Amanda Thomsen, Kiss My Aster
5:15 p.m. Friday; Location: Mendota 1-2
12 p.m. Saturday; Location: Mendota 4
3:30 p.m. Saturday; Location: Mendota 1-2

Loud and fun, Amanda Thomsen landscapes by day and blogs at night. Her blog, Kiss My Aster, has simultaneously alienated and enraptured people for more than a decade. Amanda is also author of Kiss My Aster: A Graphic Guide to Creating a Fantastic Yard Totally Tailored to You, an irreverent and interactive guide to designing an outdoor space. She is empowering a whole new generation of gardeners to take control of their landscapes. Amanda will provide a “Quick and Dirty” Gardening 101 session, as well as a presentation on 150 ways to create a fantastic yard totally tailored to you.

Kerry Ann Mendez

Kerry Ann Mendez
10:45 a.m. Saturday; Location: Mendota 4
1:15 p.m. Saturday; Location: Mendota 4

Kerry Ann Mendez is an award-winning garden educator, author and design consultant based in southern Maine. Her latest book, The Budget-Wise Gardener, will be released in February. Kerry will present a session with money-saving tips for purchasing plants and designing your garden, as well as a session about simplified gardening for time-pressed and maturing gardeners.

Gardening Shame

TED-inspired “Gardening Shame” Talk
12 p.m. Saturday; Location: Mendota 4

This fast-paced TED-inspired talk will feature three presenters, who will each speak for 20 minutes on the theme “Gardening Shame.” Presenters include UK’s Michael Perry (Mr Plant Geek), Amanda Thomsen (Kiss My Aster) and Ben Futa (Allen Centennial Garden).

Aquascaping

Returning Due to Popular Demand! Great Lakes Aquascaping Championships
All day Friday and Saturday; Location: Exhibition Hall
10:30 a.m. Sunday awards presentation; Location: Exhibition Hall

Aquascaping is the craft of creating an artful underwater landscape. During the Great Lakes Aquascaping Championships, hosted by Madison Area Aquatic Hobbyists, contestants will create an aquarium display on site at Garden Expo. The competition features both small- and large-tank divisions. Watch participants build their displays Friday and Saturday, and check out the awards presentation at 10:30 a.m. Sunday.

Larry Meiller

WPR’s Larry Meiller, Garden Talk
9:30 a.m. Saturday; Location: Mendota 4

Larry Meiller, host of Wisconsin Public Radio’s Garden Talk, teams up with horticulture experts Lisa Johnson and Brian Hudelson to answer all your gardening questions.

Melinda Myers

Gardening Expert Melinda Myers
11:45 a.m. Saturday; Location: Mendota 1-2
12:45 p.m. Sunday; Location: Mendota 1-2

Nationally known gardening expert, TV/radio host, author & columnist Melinda Myers has more than 30 years of horticulture experience and has written more than 20 gardening books. Melinda is a columnist and contributing editor for Birds & Blooms and Wisconsin Gardening magazines, and previously hosted seven seasons of Great Lakes Gardener on PBS. In 2017, Myers was inducted into the national Association for Garden Communicators Hall of Fame. Melinda will present about how to make a big impact in a small space garden, and she’ll also share a session with tips on how to put your garden and containers to work for you all year long. Melinda’s presentations are made possible with support from American Transmission Company/Grow Smart.

Inga Witscher

Inga Witscher, Around the Farm Table
4-6 p.m. Friday; Location WPT booth
10 a.m.-noon Saturday; Location: WPT booth
12:30 p.m. Saturday; Location: Demo Stage B

Inga Witscher, host of Wisconsin Public Television’s Around the Farm Table, will greet visitors at the Wisconsin Public Television booth 4-6 p.m. Friday and 10 a.m-noon Saturday. Inga will also host a stage demonstration on Saturday all about fondue. Learn about the history of this cheesy classic, how to prepare it, and you might even be inspired to make a special fondue meal for your valentine.

Craft Cocktails

Botanical-Themed Craft Cocktails in the Central Garden
Friday 4-8 p.m.; Location: WNLA Central Garden Display

Join us 4-8 p.m. Friday in the Garden Expo Central Garden for botanical-themed craft cocktails developed by mixologists from Graze, a farm-to-table Madison restaurant. While you sip on your cocktail, take a stroll through the beautiful plant and flower display put together by members of the Wisconsin Nursery and Landscaping Association (WNLA).

Farmers’ Market

Farmers’ Market
10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday; Location: Atrium

Back by popular demand, the Farmers’ Market will return to Garden Expo 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday in the Atrium. Visit nearly two dozen local vendors to stock up on pickles, preserves, artisan cheeses, hot sauces, honey and more.

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For Exhibitors
Seminars & Demos
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