Plant, art show will warm up end of winter

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, February 17, 2010

NATCHEZ — It may not feel like spring outside, but it surely will look like spring Saturday morning.

Copiah-Lincoln Community College, Natchez campus will host an art and garden show from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m Saturday in the W.L. Nelson Multi-Purpose Room of the Redd/Watkins Career and Technical Education Center.

The show is a project of the Institute of Learning in Retirement at Co-Lin. Judy Wiggins, coordinator of the Institute of Learning in Retirement said the inaugural art and plant show is a way of showing people what the Co-Lin campus has outside of academic classes.

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“We are trying to get people to our campus so we can show them what we have to offer them,” Wiggins said. “Our hope is that once we get people out here they might want to join us.”

There will be an art show and sale, plant sale and a plant swap during the event. But, Wiggins said, without-a-doubt, the biggest draw is the featured speaker, Felder Rushing.

Rushing is a southern garden expert who hosts a weekly live Mississippi Public Broadcasting garden program and is the author of 15 books on gardening.

“He is so personable, and he knows just about everything you can think to ask about gardening,” Wiggins said.

Rushing will speak from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. and will have a book signing for his newest book from 11:30 to noon. He will be giving tips on spring gardening in the region.

“It will be spring before too long and gardeners are desperate to get started with the fun,” Wiggins said. “Felder Rushing is fun and educational.”

Wiggins said Rushing will answer audience questions during his talk.

“He’s a back and forth kind of speaker,” she said. “If somehow he doesn’t know the answer to your questions, he’ll find it for you.”

Rushing is a popular garden speaker across Mississippi and the south. Wiggins said she was lucky to book Rushing for the February event despite first contacting him in November.

“He had one or two days left on his spring calender and only one of those was in February,” she said. “Lucky for us, it was the day of our event.

“He’s a big draw wherever he speaks because of the useful information in his talks. He is just a celebrity — I don’t know what else to say about him.”

The plant swap is an opportunity for gardeners to pick up new plants for their home gardens. Participants in the plant swap should bring one good-quality, ready-to-plant plant for the swap. Bulbs, seeds or unrooted cuttings are not eligible for the plant swap.

Every plant in the swap will be given a number, and participants will draw numbers from a basket. Participants will then take home the plant that corresponds to the number picked.

While only one plant can be put in the swap, gardeners can bring more to share later as lagniappe.

Local nurseries and garden centers have donated plants to be sold during the plant sale. The proceeds from the plant sale will be donated the Natchez-Adams County Humane Society, Wiggins said.

“I hope we sell a lot of plants for a lot of money,” she said. “The humane society is such a worthy cause, and they need that new building desperately.”

Artists from ArtsNatchez and the Natchez Artists Association will also be displaying and selling art pieces during the event.

Refreshments will be available

For more information about the event contact Wiggins at 601-446-1237.