Bullington Gardens' 20th Annual Spring Plant Sale - TribPapers

Bullington Gardens’ 20th Annual Spring Plant Sale

Those hard-to-find locally plants will be available for purchase at this Plant Sale at Bullington Gardens. Photo courtesy of Bullington Gardens.

Hendersonville – Bullington Gardens in Hendersonville will be holding its 20th annual spring plant sale for three days: Thursday, April 25th, through Saturday, April 27th, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. For Friends of Bullington, there will be an early bird invitation emailed before the event. This is a wonderful opportunity to find native, pollinator-friendly, quality plants. All vegetable plants were grown from seed to offer varieties not easily found in stores. This year it will include vegetable starts, 15 types of tomatoes including heirlooms, hard-to-find herbs, and pollinator annuals, dahlia tubers, shrubs, trees, and specialty conifers. For the complete list of offerings go to: https://www.bullington gardens, org/eventsandclasses/spring-plant-sale. All sale proceeds go toward Bullington’s mission to “teach, connect, and heal through plants.”

A Public Garden Devoted to Horticultural Education

Bullington Gardens is a part of the Hendersonville Community, with over 100 volunteers who give many thousands of hours of service and support to the Gardens. Admission is open to the public, free of charge. A donation of $3 per person is appreciated. For years Joellen Johnson coordinated volunteer efforts and “is the glue” that holds everyone together. The pollinator garden is maintained by Connie Smith, and the Shade Garden is by Jane Davis. There is a long list of volunteer Garden Champions: Deb Daniel, Mary Quirk, Greg Massey, Nancy & Gary Gilcrest, Vickie Robertson, Mary Martin, Kim Biggerstaff, Linda Kennard, Marti and Steve Mininger, Liz Spratley, Marc Singer, Joan Colburn, Joy Muck, Betty Lockwood, and Stan Rogan are just a few to mention.

Hurry in to find exactly what colors your garden needs at the Bullington Plant Sale in Hendersonville, April 25,26,27th. Photo courtesy of Bullington Gardens.
Hurry in to find exactly what colors your garden needs at the Bullington Plant Sale in Hendersonville, April 25,26,27th. Photo courtesy of Bullington Gardens.

Rosie Reeves is the Education Coordinator at this 12-acre horticultural site. As Bullington Gardens’ mission is to connect children and adults with the natural world through science-based horticultural education, Reeves has a full agenda. The Horticultural Therapy classes work to promote well-being and rehabilitation, helping with special needs students, perhaps some who are nonverbal. They encourage the students to listen to sounds all around them (the birds, the bees) and pay attention to the colors they see in the flowers and trees. Weekly, students work in the garden, make nature crafts, and enjoy the amazing surroundings.

The Bullington Onsite Occupation Skills Training (BOOST) is a program for sophomores, taught by Rosie in the Occupation Course of Study in all four Henderson County Public High Schools. BOOST cultivates pre-vocational skills such as time management, respectful communication, process planning, and collaboration as students work on the trails, gardens, and grounds. The culminating activity is a garden competition where students design, budget, grow plants, and install a garden based on their chosen theme. The Best Garden (as judged by community leaders) is awarded at an end-of-school-year celebration, along with awards for Most Valuable Workers from each school. The last day is May 16th. Around 9:30 a.m. the winners will be announced. This will be followed by games, races, and other activities—a field day.

Elementary school programs are offered to inspire and engage the younger students. These programs are led by experienced, enthusiastic educators teaching Plant Exploration, Garden Math, Life Cycles, Soil Studies, Wildlife Interactions, and more!

Annie Higgins, the Director, noted in her Spring report that the Butterfly Breezeway was completed, having received a grant from Master Gardeners and Henderson Tourism and Development Authority, and is in the process of being planted in the new Children’s Garden. This will include a 60-foot pollinator tunnel, which undoubtedly will be thrilling for children to walk through as they view the life cycles of various butterflies. She also mentioned, “A Children’s storybook that was written and illustrated for Bullington is now ready and will become a story walk after the fairy trail is taken down this fall. In the storybook, the Bullington fairies and Monarchs form a friendship and migrate to Mexico together in the fall. The story, titled ‘The Wings of Friendship’ illustrates the bond that these two have, the struggles they face, and their return every year to the gardens.” A grant has recently been received from the Henderson TDA to create this story walk.

Interesting adult workshops and programs are regularly scheduled. On May 2 Steve Pettis will discuss the many flowers that grow in the springtime in the forests of Western North Carolina. Steve is the Henderson County Extension Agent. He will discuss some of the most common spring ephemeral plants’ biology, their pollinators, and the interesting history of these special plants as well as mosses and ferns. On May 4, the course of a do-it-yourself-care product is being offered just in time for Mother’s Day. This is a fun introductory class led by Judy Peacock. Each participant will take home a honey scrub, a clay mask blend, and an herbal tranquil tea blend. For more information on Bullington’s many stimulating activities, go to www.bullingtongardens.org