Tuesday, June 11, 2024

Going Local-Metrolina Trial Garden Open House

 Last week, the Master Gardeners were invited
to a unique event in a nearby town.
The annual Trial Garden Open House
at Metrolina Greenhouses
allowed us (and hundreds of other folks),
to participate in choosing our favorite plants
from an array of annuals, perennials, hanging baskets
and combination displays.

Metrolina is one of the largest greenhouse and growing
operations with two locations spanning over 1,000 acres of total property.
The company was started in 1972 on an acre of land,
and has grown to become one of the biggest suppliers
to Home Depot, Lowe's and Walmart.
You can find out more here.

Although I've lived in the Piedmont for several years,
this was the first time I had heard about this opportunity.
With over 3 acres of plants to choose from,
it was a challenge to pick out our favorites in 4 categories:
1.  Favorite combination planter
2.  Favorite geranium
3.  Favorite hanging basket
4.  Overall favorite.

Several large demonstration gardens were featured,
like this pollinator bed.
There were separate areas for sun or shade loving plants,
hanging baskets and annuals, perennials and 2nd year perennials.
The displays were wonderful for gathering ideas.

So many gorgeous flowers, yes,
but various textures as well.
There were many plants I could identify,
but others that I had never seen before.
It was a real eye-opener.
This salvia was a bee magnet!

It was a fabulous morning for sister and I 
to spend some quality time together.
Here, she is putting her flag into her 
choice for favorite hanging basket.
Afterwards, we went for lunch AND ice cream!
I can't wait for her to retire!

A gentleman from Proven Winners was in a booth,
showing off one of their latest projects.
This planting pot looks like plastic,
but it is actually plant-based.
The whole kit-and-kaboodle can be planted,
or it can be composted and will decompose on its own.
Everyone who attended was gifted a petunia
planted in one of these pots.

It was a bit of walking, 
but we were able to take our time.
What an enjoyable experience.
One I hope we can repeat annually.

Have you ever been to a trial garden event?


  1. Wow, that sounds like a wonderful event to attend! How fun! I can relate to your sister's retirement comment, as I've recently been thinking the same. It'll be a few years, but watch out world!

    1. Retirement gives us something to look forward to!

  2. Wow - 3 acres is unbelievable. Gosh every time you go, you'll see something different! Nice that you were able to enjoy the day with your sister. I can understand you looking forward to the day she retires. Especially now that you live so close to her.

  3. It was so great just hanging out with her. She is easy to be with. Thank you for visiting!

  4. Sounds like a perfect day! Sisters are the best. The plant-based pot fills me with hope!

    1. Yes, the plant pots are impressive! So good to see you here. Hope all is well.


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