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Gardenfest 2014 Features Humorist and Garden Expert Amanda Thomsen

[Tuesday, March 25, 2014]


Amanda Thomsen

Forget the polar vortex and "Chiberia" and get inspired through the "Ready, Set, Grow" workshops and seminars at Gardenfest 2014 from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, April 5, in the Luecht Conference Center at McHenry County College, located at 8900 U.S. Hwy. 14 in Crystal Lake.

Gardenfest 2014 is sponsored by the University of Illinois Extension Master Gardeners in conjunction with the McHenry County College Workforce and Community Development Division.

Keynote speaker is Amanda Thomsen, garden designer, blogger and author. She will share ideas on how to customize your garden in her humorous and educational talk entitled "Making It Yours." Thomsen has appeared in the Chicago Flower and Garden Show, the Proven Winners Outdoor Extravaganza and Gardenscape NY. Her book, "Kiss My Aster: a Graphic Guide for Creating a Fantastic Yard Tailored to You" will be featured and available for sale.  Amanda Thomsen writes for Fine Gardening, Green Profit and Proven Winners.

Master gardeners and other experts will present a wide variety of informative workshops including: Best New Plants for 2014, How to Enhance the Curb Appeal of your Home, Tips for Creating a Sustainable Backyard Vegetable Garden, Top 25 herbs for the Home Garden, Care of Pine and Spruce trees, Beekeeping Basics, the Cottage Garden, Hostas in the Landscape, Lessons Learned from the Early President’s Gardens, Drought Tree Stress, Native Plants in your Garden, Living Wall/Vertical Gardening, Sustainable Lawn Care, There’s a Pest in My Garden, Urban or Suburban Orchards-Growing Fruit in Small Spaces, Sustainable Small-Scale Hobby Farming, Birds at Your Doorstep, Care and Re-blooming of Holiday Plants, Creative Containers for All Seasons, Gardening Trends-How Are We Growing, Native Trees in the Landscape, Shrubs in a Small Space, Common Insects and Diseases of Landscape Trees, Garden Photography, Gardening With Kids, Landscaping for Shady Areas, Plant Propagation, Succulents, Trial Gardens and Sun Dials.

Cost is $40 for general admission and $25 for MCC horticulture students. Lunch is included in the fee. Registration forms can be downloaded at Forms can be faxed to (815) 479-7775. For more information about Gardenfest 2014, call (815) 479-7570 or e-mail

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