Plants, Local Foods & Outdoor Spaces

NDSU Research and Demonstration Gardens, Corner of 12th Avenue and 18th Street North, Fargo, ND

The North Dakota State University (NDSU) Department of Plant Sciences  will host a public event called Plants, Local Foods and Outdoor Spaces on Tuesday, Aug. 9, from 3 to 7:30 p.m. in the NDSU Horticulture Research and Demonstration Gardens.

The gardens are on the NDSU campus at the corner of 18th Street and 12th Avenue North in Fargo.

The event will feature tours of the annual and perennial flower gardens. The gardens are an official All-America Selections bedding plant display garden.

Each year, the NDSU Department of Plant Sciences evaluates the performance of more than 200 varieties of annual bedding plants under harsh North Dakota growing conditions. Plants are rated for vigor, bloom and uniformity.

“New this year, we will have the general public vote on their favorite annual bedding plants,” says Esther McGinnis, NDSU Extension horticulturist and associate professor. “This is an example of how the public can help us with our research.”

A key feature of the event will be tours of the American Daylily Society Historic Collection. Lisa Schmidt from the Central North Dakota Daylily Society will give a special presentation on daylilies at 3:30 p.m.   

“We have scheduled this event earlier in the season than in previous years to celebrate our American Daylily Society Historic Collection as NDSU has more daylily cultivars than any other public institution in the country,” says McGinnis. “The collection is a virtual history of daylily breeding.”

In addition to garden tours, Don Kinzler, Extension horticulture agent for Cass County, will give a talk under the big tent. He will present at 4 p.m. on preparing the yard and garden for fall.

Children’s activities at 4 and 5 p.m. will include a special pollinator scavenger hunt.

Plant Sciences faculty, Alan Zuk and Deying Li, will give educational demonstrations on selecting the best turfgrass species and mixes, and on home irrigation at 5 and 5:30 p.m., respectively.

At 6 p.m., NDSU faculty will lead a special riding tour of fruit, vegetable and organic research projects. Faculty conduct research so growing fruits and vegetables in home gardens is easier to do.

Extension Master Gardeners will be on site to accept donations of fresh garden produce and canned goods to benefit the Fargo Emergency Food Pantry as part of their Veggies for the Pantry initiative.

“Bring your excess cucumbers, zucchinis and other fresh produce to the event to fight hunger,” says McGinnis. “We will also accept canned goods to benefit our local food pantries.”

Extension Master Gardeners also will be on hand to answer plant questions with Peg Skaflen presenting on uncommon uses for herbs at 5:30 p.m. under the big tent.


2022 Plants, Local Foods & Outdoor Spaces Schedule





3:00 PM
Big Tent  Official Welcome NDSU Administrators
3:30 PM
Historic Daylily Garden Daylily Presentation Lisa Schmidt, Central ND Daylily Society
  Meet by Big Tent Garden tour of flower beds & pollinator trials Barb Laschkewitsch, NDSU Garden Manager
4:00 PM
Big Tent Preparing Yard and Garden for Fall Don Kinzler, Cass County Extension Horticulture Agent
  Small Tent Children's Activity - Pollinator Scavenger Hunt April Johnson (Extension Pollinator Technician) and Extension Master Gardeners
4:30 PM
Perennial Plant of the Year Collection Perennial Award Winners Esther McGinnis, Extension Horticulturist/Assoc. Professor
  Meet by Big Tent Garden tour of flower beds, pollinator trials, and Historic Daylily Collection Barb Laschkewitsch, NDSU Garden Manager
5:00 PM
Turfgrass and Bee Lawn Plots Comparing Turfgrass Species & Mixes for ND Alan Zuk (Assoc. Professor) and Esther McGinnis (Assoc. Professor)
  Small Tent Children's Activity - Pollinator Scavenger Hunt April Johnson (Extension Pollinator Technician) and Extension Master Gardeners
5:30 PM
Big Tent Fun With Herbs: Common Herbs, Uncommon Uses; How to make infusions, decoctions, tinctures, and some fun recipes, too Peggy Skaflen, Extension Master Gardener and MG Diagnostician
  Turfgrass Plots Lawn Irrigation Control & Water Savings Deying Li, Professor
6:00 PM
Meet by the tractor and trailer Riding Tour of Fruit & Vegetable Research Plots: Hardy grape breeding, raspberries, apples, strawberries, organic production & vegetables Harlene Hatterman-Valenti (Professor), Wenhao Dai (Professor), Greta Gramig (Assoc. Professor), and Chiwon Lee (Professor)
  Extension Master Gardener Diagnosticians Booth, Veggies for the Pantry Collection, Vote for your favorite annuals  
Contact Information

Contact Information

Esther McGinnis

Requests for accommodations related to disability should be made to the event contact person at least two weeks in advance of the event.