Sunday, February 09, 2014

2014 Garden Expo

It was a cold and blustery Saturday with the temperature stuck a few degrees above zero and snowflakes falling as they had every third day or so in recent memory, making for slippery driving.  And they came, thousands of them, winter-weary folks searching for a hint of spring.  It was Wisconsin Public TV’s  Garden Expo held at the Alliant Energy Center in Madison (I still call it the fairgrounds) that brought out cabin-fevered thousands.

These master gardeners, novice gardeners, wanna be gardeners, and one-time but no longer gardeners all gathered out of the cold and snow to talk gardening, to gather a new idea or two, perhaps buy some trinket to hang on their garden fence or prop up in their dining room.  People were buying windmills made out of soup spoons, one-time shovels cut in a rather decorative way—but now only hinting at their original purpose.  People carried pussy willows and arms full of assorted tangled stems (looked like brush to this old farm boy) and smiling at their purchase.  I was smiling, too, as I have acres of this kind of “decorative wood stem" growing at my farm.

People flocked to the seminars and workshops, listening, taking notes, asking questions.  Their minds away from the snow and cold.  Their minds wrapped around thoughts of spring and the smell of freshly turned soil, of putting a few seeds into the ground and thinking about newly pulled radishes, fresh-cut lettuce, shucked peas and then tomatoes, oh the delight of that first red, homegrown tomato.

So for a few hours on a blustery Saturday, people’s minds were thrust ahead to that season of the year called spring—when once again a garden can be planted.  And they were smiling and laughing and telling stories, and sharing what worked and what didn't work for last year’s garden or one they may have grown twenty years ago.

THE OLD TIMER SAYS:  Just the thought of gardening brings spring a little closer.


February 23, 2:00 p.m. Gard Theater, Spring Green.  Showing of Winter on the Farm with questions and discussion.  Followed by book signing of THE QUIET SEASON. Sponsored by Wisconsin Public TV and Arcadia Bookstore.

March 6-March 25, Writing retreat, Indian Shores, Florida.

April 5, 7:30 p.m. Stoughton Opera House, Stoughton.  WPT Farm Story, discussion and book signing.

April 7, 7:00 p.m., Kiel Library.  Garden Wisdom presentation and book signing.

April 8, Heritage Hill Historic Center, Green Bay.  Details to be announced.

April 10, 6:30 p.m. Sun Prairie Library, Limping Through Life.

For those interested in purchasing DVDS and Books from the Patterson Memorial Library in Wild Rose, Wisconsin (a fund raiser for them):
A Farm Winter with Jerry Apps, DVD $20.00 shipping included (An hour-long documentary that has aired on public television.)

The Quiet Season by Jerry Apps $25.00 shipping included (Hardcover book about winter memories—A Farm Winter is based on this book.)

The Bundle: A Farm Winter DVD and The Quiet Season hardcover book - Save $5.00 only $40!
Order from:
Patterson Memorial Library
500 Division St.
Wild Rose, WI  54984

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