Education and Special Events at the Garden

There's always something going on at the Hahn!
Fabulous speakers, seminars, symposia, hands-on workshops, free garden walks, plant sales, and other events happen throughout the year - check back frequently for the latest!

Be sure to pick up a Visitor's Permit from Parking Services or the VT Visitor's Center if attending an event in the garden during weekday business hours (M-F, 8-5). Faculty and staff can only park in F/S spaces (limited).

Thursday, February 25, 2016, 7:00 to 8:30 pm in the Peggy Lee Hahn Garden Pavilion. Expanding Roles and Opportunities for University Gardens with George Briggs, FASLA, Executive Director, the North Carolina Arboretum, Asheville, NC. $5 for general public.  Free for Friends of the Garden, Horticulture Department Faculty/Staff, and VT Students with ID.

Since 1987, George Briggs has served as executive director of The North Carolina Arboretum, an affiliate institution of the 17-campus University of North Carolina system. He has guided development of the Arboretum through over $35 million in capital development and oversees annual budgets exceeding $4 million, 60 employees and 400 volunteers. The North Carolina Arboretum attracts 500,000 visitors annually and implements place-based strategies in a variety of economic sectors.

George is a fellow in the American Society of Landscape Architects and holds degrees from Vanderbilt University, Virginia Tech and the University of Virginia in business administration, horticulture and landscape architecture, respectively. He served on the Horticulture faculty at Virginia Tech from 1975 until 1981 before entering the world of public garden administration, first at the University of Nebraska Arboretum and then at the North Carolina Arboretum in Asheville. While at Virginia Tech, Briggs taught Woody Landscape Plant Materials and the History of Landscape Architecture. He also oversaw a total revamping of the undergraduate horticulture curriculum.

Changed to Saturday, April 2, 2016 10:00 – 11:30 a.m., in the Peggy Lee Hahn Garden Pavilion. Lavender 101 with Ellen Reynolds of Beagle Ridge Herb Farm. $5 Friends of the Garden members/$10 general public.

Have you tried to grow lavender but killed it instead. Let us take the mystery out of Lavender and show you our tips and tricks to growing Lavender in Southwest Virginia. Plants will be available for sale.

Changed to Saturday, April 2, 2016 11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. in the Peggy Lee Hahn Garden Pavilion. Cooking with Lavender with Ellen Reynolds of Beagle Ridge Herb Farm. $10 Friends of the Garden members/$15 general public (additional $5 discount if you attend both programs on lavender)

Have you ever tasted Lavender? Learn how to make sweet and savory treats with this fabulous herb. Be sure to come hungry and try your hand at herbal butters, sugars and appetizers you can whip up to impress your guests. *Must pre-register by Friday, April 8. Workshop limited to 30 participants.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016 2:00 p.m. location TBD. The Right-Size Flower Garden: Exceptional Plants and Design Solutions for Time-Pressed and Aging Gardeners with Kerry Ann Mendez of Perennially Yours

Change happens. Job demands, kids, hectic schedules, aging bodies, and changing interests have led to gardens that are not in balance with our lifestyle. Time for some ‘editing’. This inspiring lecture provides easy-to-follow right-sizing strategies, recommended no-fuss plant material, and design tips for stunning year-round gardens that will be as close to ‘autopilot’ as you can get….

Kerry Ann Mendez, owner of Perennially Yours, is dedicated to teaching the art of low maintenance perennial gardening and landscaping. As a garden consultant, designer, author and lecturer, she focuses on time-saving gardening techniques, workhorse plants and sustainable practices. She has been in numerous magazines including Horticulture, Fine Gardening, Garden Gate and Better Homes and Gardens' Garden Ideas & Outdoor Living.

Kerry Ann is a self-taught gardener with over 25 years of experience and a ‘passionate perennialist’ that enjoys mixing humor with practical information. Kerry Ann’s first top-selling book, The Ultimate Flower Gardener’s Top Ten Lists, was released in March 2010; followed by her second book, Top Ten Lists for Beautiful Shade Gardens-Seeing Your Way Out of the Dark in March 2011. Her most recent book, The Right-Size Garden: Simplify Your Outdoor Space with Smart Design Solutions and Plant Choices, provides time-tested solutions for aging and time-pressed gardeners. For more about Kerry Ann and her business Perennially Yours, visit

All from noon to 1:00 p.m. on selected Wednesdays as noted. All talks meet at the Peggy Lee Hahn Garden Pavilion. No charge! Parking pass required for our visitor lot. Check our website for additional Learn at Lunch talks as they’re added.

  • Wednesday February 10, 12:00-1:00 p.m. Dutch Elm Disease: A lifetime of research
    Jay Stipes, tree doctor, prof. emeritus of plant pathology, will discuss some salient points of Dutch elm disease on which he has spent a lifetime of research and study. The talk will include some famous patients in his world travels and also elms he has treated on the VT campus, and he will discuss a fungicide that he first tested here and that is now used globally. He wants the presentation to be interactive, as learning is best when it is interactive.
  • Wednesday February 24, 2016 12:00-1:00 p.m. Pruning and Care of Backyard Fruit Trees
    Jim May is a Certified Arborist, Certified Tree Risk Assessor, Virginia Certified Horticulturist, and Certified Pesticide Applicator. He has many years of experience caring for trees. Jim will share with us proper pruning techniques and care specific to fruit trees.
    "Growing your own fruit trees is a dream for many people, but the care of the trees once planted is critical to their success. They require proper planting, pruning, fertilization and some spraying before they can really start producing good fruit. Managing several small backyard orchards for people in the NRV has taught me a lot that I will pass along in this seminar."
  • Wednesday March 16, 12:00-1:00 p.m. Learn about Stadium Woods
    Rebekah Paulson, Executive Director, Friends of Stadium Woods. Stadium Woods is an exceptionally rare urban old-growth forest located at the interface of VA Tech and the town of Blacksburg. The predominantly White Oak 12 acre old-growth forest contains more than 500 inventoried trees greater than 12” dbh including more than 50 trees believed to be between 250-450 years old. At least 60 native plant species have been identified and the woods support more than 80 species of birds. In 2011 the all-volunteer campus and community group—Friends of Stadium Woods (FOSW) -- formed to prevent development of the intact old-growth ecosystem. FOSW continues to advocate for the creation of a legally binding preservation agreement for this one-of-a-kind historic and natural treasure that will ensure this unique remnant forever remains a research and teaching laboratory. To learn more visit, and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

Art in the Garden features the work of local artists on display inside the Peggy Lee Hahn Garden Pavilion. Currently on display in the Peggy Lee Hahn Garden Pavilion the quilt trail of the NRV with Gwen Douglas.
More information.

The 2015-16 class is full. For more information on the JMG or other youth programs, contact Stephanie Huckestein, or 540-231-5970

Hahn Horticulture Garden and Montgomery County 4-H invites you to join our Junior Master Gardener (JMG) program.  The JMG program is a fun youth gardening program modeled after the highly successful adult Master Gardener program.  It offers horticultural and environmental science education through creative gardening activities.   The program includes 26 classes over the spring and fall (no summer classes).  Classes will be led by trained Master Gardener volunteers with support from Hahn Horticulture Garden and Extension staff (generally 3 or more adults for each class).  Hahn Horticulture Garden will provide garden space for some of the gardening projects.  Participants in this program will have the opportunity to become certified Junior Master Gardeners through hands-on learning, community service, and leadership projects.  Youth will be encouraged to work towards JMG certification, though this is not required.   Details about certification will be explained at the first meeting.

  • Ages: Open to all county youth (4-H and non 4-H members) in grades 3 through 5
  • Dates: Fall Dates - every Wednesday, August 26 through November 18, 2015
    Spring Dates - will be announced following the fall sessions but will also be on Wednesdays
  • Times: Classes (spring and fall) will run from 4:00 to 6:00 p.m.
  • Location: Hahn Horticulture Garden and Pavilion, Virginia Tech Campus
  • Cost: $50 per semester ($100 total) - This fee covers a JMG student handbook for each student, class supplies, and recognition items (chapter medals and final certification medal).

Make checks payable to “Treasurer, Virginia Tech”. Pay only $50 for the fall classes. For all students continuing in the spring (required for certification), we will collect the second $50 prior to the first class. If financial assistance is needed, we can work with you on some different payment options. Please contact one of the JMG coordinators for more information or to request a financial assistance application (contact information listed below).

To register, complete a 4-H health history form. You can download the form at:
Return the form with your payment to Montgomery County Extension, 755 Roanoke Street, Suite 1G, Christiansburg, VA 24073.
Upon receipt of your registration, we will e-mail you directions and other information, so please be sure to print your home e-mail address legibly and clearly. If you do not have internet or e-mail access, please call our office at 382-5790. We will mail you a health history form and other information about the program.

Questions? Contact Michelle Dickerson (382-5790, or Stephanie Huckestein (231- 5970,

If you are a person with a disability and desire assistance or accommodation, please notify Michelle Dickerson at (540) 382-5790/TDD* during the business hours of 8:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. to discuss accommodations 5 days prior to the event. *TDD number is (800) 828-1120.

For more information on upcoming JMG session/openings, contact Stephanie at or call 540-231-5970.

Rejuvention Flow, 75 minutes every Tuesday @ 5:30 PM, Hahn Horticulture Pavilion (Lots of Available FREE PARKING!! The practice will be held INSIDE with a beautiful view of the gardens.) NO Yoga August 24th.

A more basic yoga offering, with longer holds and more grounding postures. A nice place for new practitioners, or the average human being who needs to slow down. This offering will concentrate on a more basic postures, hip openers, forward folds as well as restorative stretching to release any unnecessary stress.

Please Invite friends, students and collegues. For more information, check out the Facebook Event Page or contact

We are always working to make the garden better. Here are a few of our upcoming projects to look forward to!

Related Links

Hahn Horticulture Garden and Virginia Cooperative Extension programs and employment are open to all, regardless of race, color, national origin, sex, religion, age, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, genetic information, marital, family, or veteran status, or any other basis protected by law. An equal opportunity/affirmative action employer.
If you are a person with a disability and desire assistance or accommodation, please notify Stephanie Huckestein, Education and Outreach Coordinator, at (540) 231-5970 during business hours, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
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