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Sara Williams
October 22, 2000

Sara Williams
email Sara.Williams@extfc.usask.ca
1116 Eleanor Street
Grasswood, SK
S7T 1A7
306-966-5534 (w)
306-966-5567 (fax)

* Timing on all of these is quite flexible


Sara Williams is the editor of The Gardener for the Prairies, and the horticultural specialist with the Extension Division, University of Saskatchewan. She holds a B.A from the University of Michigan in English and History as well as a B.Sc. and M.Sc. from the University of Saskatchewan in Horticulture. Sara is co-author of Perennials for the Prairies and author of the award-winning Creating the Prairie Xeriscape. She has led garden tours to England, Scotland, Ireland, Hawaii and Costa Rica. Sara has a column in the Western Producer and is heard regularly on CBC Radio Saskatchewan's Morning Edition. She is included in the University of Toronto's Canadian Who's Who.

* Perennials: A Gardener's Choice (2-3 hours)

Gardening is zone 2b forces one to push hardiness zones to their limit. What "can't grow here", often can. But "putting one's money where one's mouth is" can also lead to heartbreak - an unrequited love of the worst sort when a new cultivar that you'd set your hopes on simply doesn't survive the winter!
Sara will focus on perennials hardy to zone 2b and some that are "almost so" (in a sheltered location or with dependable snow cover). SheĆ­ll also make a few side trips down the garden path discussing design and colour in the perennial border and mixed borders that include annuals, perennials, bulbs and dwarf shrubs.
Content: border location; soil prepreparation; maintenance (water, mulch, fertilizer, house keeping); propagation; perennials for sun; perennials for shade; design; mixed border; colour.

* The English Garden (2 hours)

What makes the English garden unique? What is the origin of mazes and topiary? The function of hahas and dovecotes? Beginning with the enclosed gardens of the Middle Ages, this insightful (and sometimes funny) array of slides and commentary will follow the development of English gardens through to the landscape movement, William Robinson and Gertrude Jekyll.

* Low Maintenance: Xeriscape Landscaping (2-3 hours)

A xeriscape yard is not visually different from a conventional landscape. It has vivid colours, greenery and good looks. The difference lies in the way water is used. Xeriscaping conserves water and reduces maintenance. It is a concept that can be applied to urban lots, acreages, condominiums, farm yards, parks and parking lots. It involves designing for water conservation, efficient irrigation, selection of primarily drought-tolerant plants (the choice is enormous), reduced lawn areas, soil amendments, and mulch. The rewards? Reduced drudgery and a stewardship that leaves your landscape in better condition than when you found it.
This workshop begins with the basic principles of xeriscape, continues with examples of urban and rural designs that conserve water and reduce maintenance, and concludes with a sampler of drought-tolerant plants: trees, shrubs, perennials, and bulbs - a palette of choice much greater than you would think!

* Trees and Shrubs in the Prairie Landscape (2-3 hours)

This workshop focuses on the use of trees and shrubs both individually and in the "mixed layered border": a concept that dramatically increases colour and texture in your landscape by adding a vertical dimension while at the same time reducing maintenance. Beginning with canopy trees, it continues through smaller trees; large, medium and small shrubs; and ground covers. Emphasis will be on four-season landscape value (foliage, stem and bark colour, flowers and fruit), water needs, sun and shade, the pros and cons of "naturalizing", and tree and shrub habits: good and bad. Pruning, insects and disease will also be touched on.

Email: sara.williams@fc.usask.ca
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