Friday & Saturday       

March 17th & 18th, 2017      



Farmers Market Big Red Barn at the Agricenter            

         7777 Walnut Grove Road                                                   

                                    WHERE IS IT?  Click on the Red Barn for map                                               


Mark your calendars for the Memphis Area Master Gardeners Spring Fling Garden Show and Plant Sale! The two-day event takes place Friday and Saturday, March 17th and 18th from 9 am to 5 pm in Memphis at the Big Red Barn at the Farmer’s Market on the grounds of the Agricenter, 7777 Walnut Grove. Admission and parking are free!


Spring Fling offers educational seminars from regional and local experts; hands-on instruction; a gardening photo exhibit; re-cycling information; a seed starter booth; a gardening book and magazine sale; and lots of fun children’s activities in our Kid’s Corner. Our Master Gardener Plant Sale includes more than 2,000 plants and bulbs in a wide range of selections just in time for the gardening season. Have a gardening question? We have the answer! The “Ask a Master Gardener” Plant Clinic gives personalized solutions to your particular gardening problem. In addition, numerous vendors furnish unique plants, artisanal crafts, accessories and garden-related items in a rare “one stop shop” gardening marketplace. Don’t miss “Garden Jumble” – a mini flea-market of gently used garden tools, implements and art.


Topics for presentations this year include backyard chickens, small gardens, butterflies, and healthy organic gardening methods. You will also see demonstrations on creating terrariums, cooking with herbs, and making garden markers with spoons. Noted speakers include Carol Reese, Dale Skaggs, Rita Randolph, Carl Wayne Hardeman and Jason Reeves.


Bring the kids on Saturday, March 18th for a fun-filled day of educational activities in our Kid’s Corner. Children will be entertained with hands-on crafts and garden-related projects while learning about plants and gardening. They will create a garden hat or headband, a scented butterfly, and a sparkly flower or Garden Friends bookmark. Kids will plant wild flower seeds in a special bio- degradable pot that they make. Take it home and watch the flowers grow!  There will be cooking demonstrations and a worm meet-and-greet.  Don’t forget face painting and balloon animals! All of the children’s activities are FREE.


Dr. Chris Cooper, UT Extension Agent for Shelby County, notes that the TN Extension Memphis Area Master Gardeners Spring Fling Garden Show and Plant Sale “is unique. It is the only free garden event in the county devoted entirely to horticulture education and gardening. Many well-known local nurserymen as well as state Extension employees support Spring Fling with their contributions and time.”


For more information about this premier gardening event, visit the website You can also contact the Shelby County UT Extension Office at (901) 752-1207. For vendor information, please contact Linda Taylor at


MAMG Spring Fling 2017 Speakers

FRIDAY: 11am     PATSY COURTRIGHT      "City Chicks in a Pampered Coop"

"Patsy Courtright is a retired MCS teacher who became a Master Gardener in 2008. Finally, this Tennessee farm girl got closer to her roots when she got her first chickens in 2013."  This presentation will cover my personal journey from farm girl to having laying hens in the city. Topics included are coops and living spaces, food, water and cleaning, predators, benefits and concerns, city regulations, and the growing popularity of Urban Chickens.

Bio: I was raised in Martin, Tenneessee on a dairy farm with chickens, a goat, cows, hogs, and Lassie our dog. Being the first born, my Dad taught me at a very early age to drive the tractor and truck. Even though our life was daily work of milking, feeding, and harvesting in season, I loved the outdoors and still do. After college, I moved to Memphis for graduate school and became a middle school Health and Physical Education teacher and coach for 34 years. I found spaces to grow roses, lots of flowers and vegetables. In 2008, I became a Memphis Area Master Gardener and have learned so much! In 2013, I had a chicken coop built and got my first batch of chickens. Every day is fun!



This presentation focuses the healthy benefits of natural gardening. A non-profit garden which uses no manufactured chemical sprays and no manufactured fertilizers is used as an example. 

Bio: Carl Wayne Hardeman enjoys sustainable veggie and flower gardening, speaking, and writing.  He leads the Germantown Church of Christ charity garden which demonstrates natural regenerative gardening. He founded the Collierville Farmers Market and co-founded the Collierville PAR Victory Garden. He speaks regularly on healthy soil, healthy plants, healthy people. His columns appear in newspapers and gardening magazines. Carl Wayne was recognized as a Lifetime Memphis Area Master Gardener in 2015 and was received the 2016 Award of Excellence by the Memphis Horticultural Society.


In Landscape architecture, plant selection is often the final layer which creates excitement, mood, and drama for built spaces. It is a very local detail which identifies with the varying climates, soils and conditions of a particular region. What works in Knoxville or Nashville may flop in Memphis. This presentation will help you make great choices for the mid-south to set your designs apart from the rest.

Bio: Dale Skaggs is a native Memphian and has worked since high school in the nursery business in many capacities. He operated his own landscape/garden contracting business, was an adjunct faculty member at Memphis' Southwest Tennessee Community College, and was the Shelby County horticultural extension agent with the University of Tennessee. Dale became the Director of Horticulture at the Dixon Gallery and Gardens in Memphis in 2007. He is a past president of the Memphis Horticultural Society and has received the Horticulture Commendations award from the Garden Club of America. Dale is a graduate of Oregon State University with a BS degree in Horticulture; he also earned Bachelor of Landscape Architecture and Master of Landscape Architecture degrees from the University of Oregon.

SATURDAY 11am     JASON REEVES  "GREAT GARDEN PLANTS - ATTRACTING BUTTERFLY and other                                           POLLINATORS"

Jason Reeves is a research horticulturist at the University of Tennessee Gardens located at the West Tennessee Research and Education Center in Jackson.  His colorful plant combinations and unique garden art, made by recycling everyday objects, draws several thousand people to the center's annual lawn and garden show each July.  He is also known for his elaborate fall pumpkin and gourd display at the center. His past experience includes work at the Missouri Botanical Garden, Longwood Gardens in Pennsylvania, the Opryland Conservatories, and in private gardens in New Zealand. In 2008, he began leading domestic and international garden tours, and, is a contributing editor to Fine Gardening magazine. Jason has a B. S. in Agriculture from UT – Martin and a M.S. in Ornamental Horticulture and Landscape Design from UTK. Information about the West Tennessee Research and Education Center can be found here:


Lucas Holman grew up working in his aunt's and uncle's wholesale greenhouse in Rockwood, Tennessee.  He works as an AgriScience Education instructor at Riverdale High School in Murfreesboro, Tennessee and was recently named Outstanding Agriculture Teacher by the Tennessee Association of Agriculture Educators. He is a hobby hybridizer of daylilies and in the process of starting his own nursery.   


“With camera in hand, my favorite pastime is roaming the country, lecturing, writing and traveling with friends to private gardens, public botanical gardens, other nurseries and taking pictures of all the wonderful plants, people and places as I go. It’s occurred to me that most passionate gardeners have addictive personalities. We are never done, and it just gets more exciting outside, the farther we go. Here in this lecture you can come with me and visit some of my favorite and inspirational small gardens and special places. You will leave inspired!”

Bio: Rita Randolph is a life-long horticulturist, photographer and published author. She wrote the Fine Gardening Container Gardening Special Issue in 2009 (which sold out) and published her own book, A History of Horticulture. Along with her husband, Rita owned Randolph's Greenhouses for 35 years, started by her parents almost 70 years ago. She now spends much of her time consulting, writing, traveling and plant collecting. She has been a sought-after speaker at botanical gardens, horticultural societies, garden shows and conferences across the country as she enthusiastically shares her knowledge and creative arrangements. Rita was recently presented The Sterling Award as one of the top 20 influential women in west Tenness for her educational works.

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UT/TSU Shelby County Extension Office
Agricenter International - Suite B, Box 21
7777 Walnut Grove Rd,
Memphis TN 38120.
Phone: 901-752-1207 Fax: 901-752-6240