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39th Annual Horticulture Night set for July 30

The annual Horticulture Night at the West Central Research and Outreach Center is expected to draw crowds for tours, demonstrations and food on July 30.

Garden tours, horticultural demonstrations, hands-on family activities, special activities, picnic, music, art, a farm tour, and an educational trade show will combine to create the 39th annual Horticulture Night.

Horticulture Night is Thursday, July 30, 2009 from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the University of Minnesota West Central Research and Outreach Center, in Morris.

Garden Tours

We Better Plant New Trees-5:00, 6:30 & 8:00

The looming or present threat of emerald ash borer makes it more critical to diversify our community forests. But planting species, other than ash, does not mean we are settling for second best - come hear a presentation of the top 10 choices that are better than ash and we should be planting more.

Tried and True Perennial Flowers-5:00, 6:30 & 8:00

Hear from one of the most trusted perennial flower nursery owners in the upper Midwest. With their experience and trialing efforts they will share with you new and hard-to-find perennials that will perform well in this region.

Raspberry High Tunnel-5:45 & 7:15

Tour a new experiment attempting to extend Minnesota's short fruit growing season.

Low Input Sustainable Turf- 5:45, & 7:15

Are you interested in spending less time watering and fertilizing your lawn? Compare and look at several low-input turf grasses for Minnesota lawns.

Annual Flowers-5:00, 6:30 & 8:00

View trials of new and interesting innovations in annual flower varieties.

Demonstrations-Tent On South Side Of Garden

West-Central Minnesota Weather History and Current Climate Trends -5:00 & 7:15

Area weather history dates back to the mid-19th Century and is full of dramatic and traumatic events. Some of these will be highlighted, along with current climate trends and what they mean for landscaping, gardening, and farming.

Flowering Plants to Support Bee Populations-5:45 & 8:00

Learn about the different types of conservation efforts that are increasingly important for the health of native bees which can serve as an insurance policy against ongoing honey bee declines.

Winter Greenhouse Production--6:30

Find out how a passive solar greenhouse provides fresh greens and other tasty veggies all winter long--on only $50 of propane per winter!

Demonstrations-Tent On North Side Of Garden

How to Handle Produce at Home--5:00 & 7:15

Come hear about how to store home-grown fruits and vegetables - the optimal temperatures, how long to expect them to last, and food safety issues for home gardeners.

Minnesota Wine Grape Industry--5:45 & 8:00

Hear about how wine grapes have evolved from a volunteer hobby farm into a growing industry and can fit in with local foods.

Medicinal Plants for Organic Livestock Production-6:30

Certified organic dairy production prohibits the use of antibiotics in the treatment of disease in dairy animals except to relieve pain and suffering. Consequently traditional treatments, many of which are based on horticultural plant material, are used. Learn about herbal and traditional approaches to traditional methods of treating disease in organic dairy herds.

Hands-on Family Activities in Children's Garden

Pizza Garden-5:00 & 6:30

Visit this educational garden and see all of the plants that make up the ingredients of a pizza.

Making Heart Valves and Bacon from Corn-5:45 & 7:15

Corn is the number one agricultural product produced in Minnesota, with 1.18 billion bushels harvested. Find out how some of that corn may save a life, through a heart valve. Or where do skin grafts for badly burned individuals come from? The answer is pigs.

Growing Cucumbers and Beating the Beetles in a Hoop House-5:00 & 6:30

Techniques will be shared on growing vegetables in a hoop house.

Salsa Making -5:45 & 7:15

How to make some great salsa and other easy veggie ideas.

Tree ID-5:00 & 6:30

Take a quick trip into our woody plants and test your knowledge of all the different trees that grow in our area.

Special Activities

Farm Tour - 5:00, 6:30 and 8:00 in the registration area

Take a ride on a hayrack and learn about the ongoing Agriculture Research and Renewable Energy.

New Raspberry High Tunnel Project Tours- 5:45 and 7:15

This fruit research project is in its second year testing the viability of extended season harvest of raspberries. Raspberries in the high tunnel are grown in controlled conditions without the use of any pesticides. This project is one of two U of M experimental projects to assess high tunnel raspberry production in Minnesota.

The Tri State Band, performing at 7:15

In the picnic tent area.

Food Booths

Grilled Hamburgers and Bratwurst

Kiwanis Booth and the 4-H Food Booth

The WCROC Horticulture Gardens are used for research and to showcase displays that inspire gardeners to use them in their own backyards.

Steve Poppe, Horticulture Scientist at WCROC, thanks the Master Gardeners, numerous volunteers, WCROC faculty and staff, Extension Educators, 4 H groups, and the Pomme de Terre Garden Club for their assistance with Horticulture Night.

The tours will run from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Location of the University of Minnesota West Central Research and Outreach Center is one mile east of Morris on Highway 329. Horticulture Night is free and open to everyone.