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CCMGA Summer Speaker Series

Explore the vibrant world of gardening with our Summer Speaker Series, available June through August. This monthly virtual lecture series is perfect for everyone—from curious beginners to seasoned gardeners. Each session promises enriching insights into the art and science of horticulture. All webinars are open to the public and free of charge.

Please note, all events will have their own registration. Following the event, attendees will receive a link to the webinar recording. 

June Speaker: Greg Grant

Lecturer, Author & Smith County Extension Agent​

July Speaker: David D. Hopman

UTA Professor of Landscape Architecture

August Speaker: Fergus Garrett

CEO and Head Gardener at Great Dixter House and Gardens

Wednesday, June 26: 11am to 12:30pm

Year-Round Earth-Kind Bulbs For North Texas
Speaker: Greg Grant

Greg Grant, Texas A&M AgriLife Smith County Extension Agent, will share his vast knowledge about growing bulbs for year-round interest in N. Texas.

Webinar Participants will:

• Explore the wide variety of bulbs that grow well in North Texas gardens.
• Learn how to select appropriate bulbs according to the season of bloom desired and the conditions in your garden.
• Discover how bulbs naturalize and become more beautiful over time.

Wednesday, July 17: 11am to 12:30pm

The Beauty of Native Plant Communities
Speaker: David D. Hopman

UTA’s notable landscape architecture professor, David Hopman, will discuss the aesthetics and ecology of native plants and demonstrate ways we can combine native plants to create sustainable urban landscapes.

Webinar Participants will:

• Learn helpful information about plant communities and polycultures.
• Appreciate the benefits of planting native plants in diverse communities.
• Discover new ways to incorporate native plants into ornamental gardens.

Wednesday, August 7: 11am to 12:30pm

Speaker: Fergus Garrett

Fergus Garrett, head gardener and CEO of one of the world’s most iconic English gardens, will share how the art and craft of sustainable gardening can bring joy to people while also enhancing biodiversity.

Webinar Participants Will:

• Learn about a historic English country estate and gardens.
• Gain an understanding of how the Great Dixter team achieves and manages highly ornamental garden areas and meadows.
• Explore how diversity in planting and garden environments can support and enhance biodiversity.

Due to the complexity of the subject and a high number of anticipated audience questions, this event may run slightly longer than our stated time.

Speaker Bios & More Information

Grant is an award-winning horticulturist, writer, conservationist, bulb farmer, and seventh-generation East Texan. He is the author of In Greg’s Garden-A Pineywoods Perspective on Gardening, Nature, and Family and Texas Fruit and Vegetable Gardening, and co-author of Heirloom Gardening in the South, Texas Home Landscaping, The Southern Heirloom Garden, and The Rose Rustlers. He also writes the popular “In Greg’s Garden” column for Texas Gardener magazine, a weekly garden column in the Tyler Morning Telegraph, and a monthly “Greg’s Ramblings” blog. His real job, however, is the Smith County horticulturist for the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, where he coordinates the Smith County Master Gardener volunteer program and directs the Tyler Botanical Garden.

Greg has introduced many successful plants to the nursery industry including dwarf pink Mexican petunia, Gold Star esperanza, Laura Bush petunia, John Fanick phlox, Stars and Stripes pentas, Pam’s Pink honeysuckle, Lecompte vitex, Henry and Augusta Duelberg sages, Big Momma and Pam Puryear Turk’s Cap, Peppermint Flare hibiscus, and the Marie Daly and Nacogdoches (Grandma’s Yellow) roses.

UTA Professor of Landscape Architecture David D. Hopman will be the second presenter in CCMGA's 2024 Summer Speakers Series. Professor Hopman designed and implemented the first extensive green roof in the Dallas/Fort Worth area in 2008 above the Life Sciences Building at UT-Arlington. He was in charge of the Sustainable Sites Initiative (SITES) certification for The Green at College Park on the UT-Arlington Campus; one of the first three projects worldwide to receive certification in February of 2012. Landscape architecture practice experience includes Kings Creek Landscaping, Huitt-Zollars, Inc., RTKL, Mesa Design Group, Inc., and a current independent practice. Recent projects include green roof design for Forest Park Medical Center (with David C. Baldwin, Inc.), the Plano Environmental Education Center landscape (with David Rietzsch and Associates), and consultation on the planting design for the Bush Presidential Library in Dallas (with Michael Van Valkenburgh and Associates). Professor Hopman advocates for using aesthetically qualified native polycultures of plants in planting design.

Professor Hopman is the author of the forthcoming book, Creative Regional Design: Renewing the Aesthetics of Landscape in Environmental Design and Planning.

World famous gardener Fergus Garrett will discuss lessons learned from a biodiversity audit of Great Dixter House and Gardens and share how gardens made to please people also can play a significant role in supporting regional biodiversity efforts. Due to the complexity of the subject and a high number of anticipated audience questions, this event may run slightly longer than our stated time.

Garrett is head gardener and CEO of Great Dixter House and Gardens. Great Dixter was the home of Christopher Lloyd, one of the most celebrated garden writers and gardeners in modern times. Fergus worked closely with Christo until Lloyd’s death in 2006. Fergus combines his full-time, hands-on gardening role at Dixter with writing and lecturing worldwide. He is known for inspiring and training the head gardeners of the future in the art and craft of gardening. He received his degree in horticulture from Wye College. He has authored and co-authored several books. He is a contributing editor of Gardens Illustrated Magazine. He was awarded the Veitch Memorial Medal by the Royal Horticultural Society in 2015 and in 2019, the coveted Victoria Medal of Honour.

Collin County Master Gardeners will receive 1 CEU per event.
Other TX MG counties and organization credits may vary.

For questions, please contact

Past Summer Speaker Series Events Subjects 

2023 Series 
Dr. Jared Barnes- Topic: The Traveling Plantsman
Marianne Willburn - Topic: Tropical Plants and How to Love Them
Dr. Doug Tallamy - Topic: Homegrown National Park®

The Collin County Master Gardeners Association is an educational service organization of volunteers who are trained in horticulture, landscaping, soil improvement, water conservation, and many other topics important to Collin County gardeners. The CCMGA volunteer program is administered by the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service through the Horticulture Agent in Collin County.

Texas A&M AgriLife Extension provides equal opportunities in its programs and employment to all persons, regardless of race, color, sex, religion, national origin, disability, age, genetic information, veteran status, sexual orientation, or gender identity. The Texas A&M University System, U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the County Commissioners Courts of Texas Cooperating. Persons with disabilities needing accommodations for effective participation in the meeting should contact Collin County AgriLife Extension office at least a week in advance of the meeting or event to request mobility, visual, hearing or other assistance.

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