Southeastern Plant Symposium

Hosted by the JC Raulston Arboretum and Juniper Level Botanic Garden

  • Friday, June 7, 2019 – 9:00 am4:30 pm
  • Friday, June 7, 2019 – 6:00 pm8:30 pm – Optional Dinner and Presentation
  • Saturday, June 8, 2019 – 9:00 am4:45 pm

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Calling all plantaholics, plant nerds, nurserymen, gardeners, and horticulturists! We are thrilled to announce the first annual JC Raulston Arboretum and Juniper Level Botanic Garden Southeastern Plant Symposium. Join us for two very full days of plant lust as we host the best of the best to talk about cutting-edge plants. We've got plant explorers, plant breeders, nurserymen, and other experts for a two-day deep dive into what's new and exciting in the plant world. What could be better than great lectures and mingling with your fellow horti-thusiasts? How about a chance to get your hands on some of the most exciting plants during the completely mind-numbing, fever-inducing silent auction. This is the one garden event that you definitely don't want to miss!

Cercis 'Flamethrower'

Speakers

Friday, June 7

Tony Avent, Owner, Juniper Level Botanic Garden and Plant Delights Nursery
David Creech, Ph.D.,Professor Emeritus, Stephen F. Austin State University, and Director, SFA Gardens
John Grimshaw, D. Phil., Director, The Yorkshire Arboretum
Scott McMahan, Manager of International Plant Exploration Atlanta Botanical Garden
Julie Moore, Retired Endangered Species Biologist, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
Ted Stephens, Owner, Nurseries Caroliniana

Saturday, June 8

Adam Black, Director of Horticulture, Peckerwood
Leanne Kenealy, Plant Breeding and Nursery Technician, JC Raulston Arboretum
Buddy Lee, Director of Plant Innovations, Plant Development Services (PDSI)
Guy Meacham, New Plant Development Manager, J. Frank Schmidt & Son Co.
Tom Ranney, Ph.D., J. C. Raulston Distinguished Professor and Mountain Crop Improvement Lab, Mountain Horticultural Crops Research and Extension Center, NC State University
Kim Shearer, Tree and Shrub Breeder and Manager of New Plant Development Program, The Morton Arboretum
Tim Wood, Product Development and Marketing Manager, Spring Meadow Nursery
Mark Weathington, Director, JC Raulston Arboretum
Adam Wheeler, Container Production and Horticulture Manager, Broken Arrow Nursery
Donglin Zhang, Ph.D., Dirr Professorship, University of Georgia

Schedule

Friday, June 7

9:00 am
Welcome
9:15 am
"The Yorkshire Arboretum—Forty Years Young"
John Grimshaw, Director, The Yorkshire Arboretum
10:15 am
Break
10:30 am
"Plants to Excite and Delight the Southern Landscape"
Ted Stephens, Owner, Nurseries Caroliniana
11:30 am
Lunch
1:00 pm
"Plant Exploration with a Purpose"
Scott McMahan, Manager of International Plant Exploration Atlanta Botanical Garden
2:00 pm
"Longleaf as Far as the Eye Could See—What Happened?"
Julie Moore, Retired Endangered Species Biologist, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
3:00 pm
Break
3:15 pm
"Preparing for the Apocalypse: Muscadines, Blueberries, Figs, Kiwifruit, and Other Alternative Fruits for the South"
Dave Creech, Ph.D.,Professor Emeritus, Stephen F. Austin State University, and Director, SFA Gardens
4:30 pm
Adjourn
6:00 pm
Dinner
7:00 pm
"Leapin’ Lignins; Woody Plants of Juniper Level Botanic Garden"
Tony Avent, Owner, Juniper Level Botanic Garden and Plant Delights Nursery

Saturday, June 8

9:00 am
Welcome
9:15 am
Tom Ranney, Ph.D., J. C. Raulston Distinguished Professor and Mountain Crop Improvement Lab, Mountain Horticultural Crops Research and Extension Center, NC State University
9:45 am
"Speeding Up New Woody Ornamental Introductions"
Donglin Zhang, Dirr Professorship, University of Georgia
10:15 am
Break
10:45 pm
"Ten Countries, Ten Breeders, and Ten (or More) Plants"
Tim Wood, Product Development and Marketing Manager, Spring Meadow Nursery
11:15 pm
"Chicagoland Grows: Midwest Trees from a Southeast Transplant"
Kim Shearer, Tree and Shrub Breeder and Manager of New Plant Development Program, The Morton Arboretum
11:45 pm
"Filling the Pipeline: New Plants for Modern Gardens"
Mark Weathington, Director, JC Raulston Arboretum
12:15 pm
Lunch, auction closes at break conclusion
1:45 pm
"Designer Genes: See What's Happening with Cercis"
Leanne Kenealy, Plant Breeding and Nursery Technician, JC Raulston Arboretum
2:15 pm
"Breeding, Selection, and Introduction of New Trees"
Guy Meacham, New Plant Development Manager, J. Frank Schmidt & Son Co.
2:45 pm
"Plant Geeks Are Us: Botanical Treasures from Our Garden to Yours"
Adam Wheeler, Horticulture and Plant Development Manager, Broken Arrow Nursery
3:15 pm
Break
3:45 pm
"Peckerwood Garden's Exclusive Woody Collector Plants"
Adam Black, Director of Horticulture, Peckerwood
4:15 pm
"New and Upcoming Plants"
Buddy Lee, Director of Plant Innovations, Plant Development Services (PDSI)
4:45 pm
Adjourn

Presentations

Friday, June 7

"The Yorkshire Arboretum—Forty Years Young"
John Grimshaw, Director, The Yorkshire Arboretum

Started in 1979, the Yorkshire Arboretum has one of the best collections of trees in northern England and is in a phase of vigorous growth, flourishing under its motto Inspiration, Education, Conservation. This talk describes its development, plants, and people—all coming together to make a rather special place.

"Plants to Excite and Delight the Southern Landscape"
Ted Stephens, Owner, Nurseries Caroliniana

Ted will explore new and/or underused plants for the Southern landscape. Not only new cultivars of familiar species, but some new species as well will be reviewed. He will concentrate extensively on the genus Osmanthus and a number of new cultivars from China.

"Preparing for the Apocalypse: Muscadines, Blueberries, Figs, Kiwifruit, and Other Alternative Fruits for the South"
Dave Creech, Ph.D.,Professor Emeritus, Stephen F. Austin State University, and Director, SFA Gardens

With a penchant for orchards and all things fruit, David Creech will cover a wide variety of fruit types you may know and some you don't. Besides the joy of growing quality local grown fruits, there's a survival value in having season long fruit production right outside the back door. An old Chinese man told me having landscapes heavy with fruit is never a bad idea in a famine. 

"Leapin’ Lignins; Woody Plants of Juniper Level Botanic Garden"
Tony Avent, Owner, Juniper Level Botanic Garden and Plant Delights Nursery

Although Juniper Level Botanic Garden is know for perennials, it also has an extensive woody plant collection including many little known treasures. We’ll share some of our favorites, along with their stories.

"Longleaf as Far as the Eye Could See—What Happened?"
Julie Moore, Retired Endangered Species Biologist, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service

An overview of the fall and rise of this once vast, amazingly diverse southeastern forest and what it has to offer us today.

"Plant Exploration with a Purpose"
Scott McMahan, Manager of International Plant Exploration Atlanta Botanical Garden

Scott will shine a light on some of the astonishing contributions of David Fairchild and a couple of his most famous USDA colleagues in the office of Foreign Seed and Plant Introduction. This discussion will then lead into work that is being done by the Atlanta Botanical Garden's own International Plant Exploration Program and the steps they are taking to provide an ex-situ conservation site here in the southeastern United States as well as evaluate wild collections for potential horticultural release while filtering out potential problem plants.  

Saturday, June 8

"Garden Innovations"
Tom Ranney, Ph.D., J. C. Raulston Distinguished Professor and Mountain Crop Improvement Lab, Mountain Horticultural Crops Research and Extension Center, NC State University

The golden age of plant breeding is upon us.  Never before has there been such a groundswell of exciting new plants and we have barely scratched the surface. Tom will touch on a number of genera (Asimina, Pyrus, ×Pyracomeles, Spiraea, and Rhododendron), recent innovations, and future potential.   

"Speeding Up New Woody Ornamental Introductions"
Donglin Zhang, Dirr Professorship, University of Georgia

Woody plant breeding is challenging! Donglin will share with you some new plants from University of Georgia Woody Plant Research Lab and introduce you modern technologies for speeding up woody plant breeding.

"Ten Countries, Ten Breeders, and Ten (or More) Plants"
Tim Wood, Product Development and Marketing Manager, Spring Meadow Nursery

Every plant has a story, and that story must begin somewhere. In his first-ever plant talk that does not include a single Tom Ranney plant variety, Tim will highlight ten talented plant breeders from ten different countries and teach us about ten (or more) remarkable plants.

"Chicagoland Grows: Midwest Trees from a Southeast Transplant"
Kim Shearer, Tree and Shrub Breeder and Manager of New Plant Development Program, The Morton Arboretum

Chicagoland Grows is a plant introduction vehicle for Morton Arboretum and Chicago Botanic Garden.  All plants developed through CG have been tortured by the cold desiccating winds of the polar vortex, hot and humid summers, and the salty, alkaline, dry and wet soils (or soilless pavement) of the overly developed landscape of the Chicago region. If our trees can tolerate the urban and suburban environs of the Midwest landscape, then they likely will not mind migrating to the Southeast.

"Filling the Pipeline: New Plants for Modern Gardens"
Mark Weathington, Director, JC Raulston Arboretum

New plants are the lifeblood of the nursery industry and the JCRA has stood at the crossroads between the industry and the public for over four decades. Mark will discuss where new plants are coming from to fill the desires of modern gardeners.

"Designer Genes: See What's Happening with Cercis"
Leanne Kenealy, Plant Breeding and Nursery Technician, JC Raulston Arboretum

Get the insider information on how the new colors, shapes, and sizes of redbud that are being created at NC State University and the JC Raulston Arboretum. We'll be discussing some recent releases and giving you the first look at what is coming out in 2020.

"Breeding, Selection, and Introduction of New Trees"
Guy Meacham, New Plant Development Manager, J. Frank Schmidt & Son Co.

Using maples as an example, an overview of the process involved in bringing new and improved tree cultivars to market with some examples of more recent introductions.

"Plant Geeks Are Us: Botanical Treasures from Our Garden to Yours"
Adam Wheeler, Horticulture and Plant Development Manager, Broken Arrow Nursery

Adam will showcase a diversity of unique and exceptional plants that have performed in his northern climate. Some from the south where they've pushed the limits north, others from the north which are in need of further testing in the South.  

"Peckerwood Garden's Exclusive Woody Collector Plants"
Adam Black, Director of Horticulture, Peckerwood

Peckerwood Garden has long been a source of exciting plants stemming from numerous collecting expeditions into northeast Mexico and beyond by garden founder John Fairey and former Yucca Do Nursery owner Carl Schoenfeld. Now a public garden with Adam Black continuing their plant exploration mission, new treasures await the lustful attention of avid collectors and nurserymen.  

"New and Upcoming Plants"
Buddy Lee, Director of Plant Innovations, Plant Development Services (PDSI)

Buddy Lee, the creator of Encore azaleas, will discuss the development of new plants and some of his favorites that are sure to delight everyone from home gardeners to plant industry professionals. 

Hotel

The host hotel for the Southeastern Plant Symposium is the Embassy Suites by Hilton near Research Triangle Park in Cary, North Carolina.

Highlights

  • Located minutes from Raleigh Durham International Airport (RDU)
  • Complimentary shuttle service to to the hotel from the airport
  • Indoor pool, modern fitness center, tennis courts, basketball courts, restaurant, bar, and room service
  • Minutes from Umstead State Park and walking and running paths
  • Close to dozens of restaurants, locally owned to fine dining
  • All suite hotel
  • Complimentary cooked-to-order breakfast

Book Your Room

Hotel Reservations To make your reservation, please visit Embassy Suite's Web site. Our group name is "2019 Southeastern Plant Symposium." When making a reservation using the link above, the group name is already applied. Please note that our group rate expires on Wednesday, May 22.

Open Gardens

The JC Raulston Arboretum will be open before, during, and after the symposium from 8:00 am through 8:00 pm. Juniper Level Botanic Garden and Plant Delights Nursery will be open Thursday, June 6 from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm, and Sunday, June 9 from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm. They'll be open for shopping and enjoying the garden.

Continuing Education

NC Landscape Contractors’ Licensing Board

The NC Landscape Contractors’ Licensing Board has approved the symposium for the following continuing education credits:

Friday (morning and afternoon): 5L
Friday (dinner): 1L
Saturday (morning and afternoon): 5L

North Carolina Board of Landscape Architects

The NC Board of Landscape Architects has approved the Southeastern Plant Symposium for 10 continuing education hours. The activity's course number is 13683.

Fund-raising efforts for the JC Raulston Arboretum operate under the auspices of the North Carolina Agricultural Foundation, Inc., a 501(c)3 non-profit, Tax ID 56-6049304. Proceeds will benefit the JC Raulston Arboretum and the Tony & Anita Avent Juniper Level Botanic Garden Endowment.

Cost
Early: $250.00; late registration: $300.00; and $60.00 for optional Friday dinner and evening presentation.
Registration
Advance registration is required. Please register online using our registration e-store. Registration is limited so register today to reserve your seat. Registration is considered complete when payment is received.
Cancellation
Program cancellations can be made up to two weeks before the program's start date. A 15% cancellation fee applies.
Location
Embassy Suites, 201 Harrison Oaks Boulevard, Cary, North Carolina, 27513
Directions
Need directions? Click here.
Parking
Free parking is available at the Embassy Suites.
Questions
Please call (919) 513-7005 for more information about this symposium.