Symposium Schedule


8:00 – 9:00 am Registration & Expo
9:00 am Welcome – Amy Katcher-Dunne, Emcee
9:10 am Certificate in Native Plants Graduation
9:20 am Benjamin Vogt, “A New Garden Ethic”
In a time of mass extinction and climate change, how and for whom we garden matters more than ever. Our built landscapes reflect social ethics and values that guide our response to reviving wildness in and outside the urban environment. How can we recognize and develop compassion for other species? What role do native plants have in opening us to the perspectives of others? What happens to our society when we advocate for the equality and freedom of a silent majority? Through ecology, psychology, landscape design, horticulture, philosophy, and social science, we’ll explore the rich complexity of rethinking pretty and what a garden means in the 21st century.
10:15 am Book signing & Expo
10:45 am Benjamin Vogt, “Busting Native Garden Management Myths”
Amending for a perfect soil. Fertilizing. Mulching. Cleaning up in the fall. Gardening by USDA hardiness zone. In this talk we rethink ten common garden practices that go against the grain of sustainable, natural landscapes for wildlife.
11:45 am – 1:15 pm Lunch & Expo
1:15 pm Philip Juras, “Picturing Nature’s Design in the Landscapes of the South”
Athens, Georgia artist Philip Juras’s longtime interests in art and nature converged in the late 1990s in his master of landscape architecture thesis on southeastern grasslands. Since then, as a landscape painter, he has applied his knowledge of ecology, history, and aesthetics to sharing his passion for intact natural landscapes across the Southeast and beyond. In presenting his paintings he will take us on a tour of southern nature from William Bartram’s time to the present, from the Georgia coast to the continental interior, and from forested wetlands to fire-dependent grasslands. Along the way, while celebrating the rich botanical and aesthetic qualities of nature’s design, he will highlight the important role humans play in maintaining native ecosystems, past and present.
2:15 pm Bodie Pennisi, PhD, “Creating a Healthy Biodiverse Community with Native Plants, Pollinators, and Other Beneficial Insects”
Native plants are appreciated not only for their beauty but also for their importance in promoting a rich and living community – from the soil microorganisms and other soil-dwellers associated with their roots, to insects which feed on their foliage, to the bees and butterflies, which pollinate their flowers and ensure a seed set. A native garden should encourage not just transient visits but also invite various insects to stay around and rear their young. What are best gardening practices when it comes to protecting pollinator health? Bodie will answer these questions and share current research in the area of integrated pest management, ecosystem services, and wildflower species for  floral provisioning of pollinators and beneficial insects.
3:15 pm Plants of Promise & Door Prizes
3:45 pm – 4:30 pm Native Plant Expo & Marketplace

Download the 2020 Symposium Schedule