Annual Event Open to Gardens Members and General Public
The UT Gardens, Knoxville, will hold its annual fall plant sale beginning with a preview sale for Gardens members, volunteers and UT employees from 4 to 7 p.m. on Friday, September 24. The event opens to the public Saturday, September 25, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
The sale promises to deliver a diverse selection of plants including regionally native species, assorted trees, shrubs, conifers, perennial flowers and foliage plants as well as houseplants and edibles. As an added value, Gardens staff and Master Gardeners will be on hand to help customers with plant suggestions and general garden advice. Friday evening shoppers will be offered the opportunity to bring one hand tool per guest for free blade sharpening. Tool sharpening will be limited to the first 50 participants.
“We are so excited about the selections we are going to be offering this fall and having an onsite sale where fellow plant enthusiasts can see what they’re getting in person makes it even more exciting,” Interim Director James Newburn said. “Seeing our old friends and new faces at the sale while maintaining safety precautions should make for a fun-filled day.”
This year’s featured plants include five specially selected flowering shrubs in a range of colors and sizes. The UT Gardens exclusive ‘Tennessee Orange’ Azalea is a crowd favorite with signature orange blooms adorning the 6-by-6-foot plant in early summer. This native flame azalea was hybridized for the Gardens by renowned azalea breeder Vivian Abney and is not available in stores. Three easy-to-grow panicle hydrangeas will also be highlighted. Quick Fire Fab® Panicle Hydrangea is a 7-by-5-foot bush with large, showy, white mophead flowers that begin blooming in early summer and age to deep pink by early fall for a long-lasting, dynamic display. Little Quick Fire® Panicle Hydrangea is good fit for a smaller garden or container with a tidier growth habit that stays in the 3- to 5-foot range. Limelight Prime® Panicle Hydrangea is a brand new, improved selection of the well-known Limelight Hydrangea with an earlier bloom time, more intense rose-pink coloration and a maximum size of 5-by-5 feet. Double Play® Candy Corn® Spirea is the final featured plant. It begins performing in early spring with intensely red new growth that matures to orange and yellow for a non-stop foliage display throughout the growing season. This small, low-maintenance shrub stays around 2 feet tall and wide.
UT Gardens memberships may be purchased or renewed either Friday or Saturday, and Gardens members receive 10 percent off their plant sale purchases. All proceeds from the fall plant sale will benefit the UT Gardens, Knoxville.
You can find the UT Gardens, Knoxville, just off Neyland Drive behind the UT Veterinary Medical Center on the Institute of Agriculture campus. From I-40 take Exit 386B onto Highway 129 (Alcoa Highway south toward the airport). From Highway 129 take the exit for Highway 158 (Neyland Drive). Turn left onto Neyland Drive at end of the exit ramp. Turn left onto Joe Johnson Drive and right at the next light onto Chapman Drive. Free visitor parking is available directly across from the entrance to the UT Gardens.
The UT Gardens include plant collections located in Knoxville, Jackson and Crossville. Designated as the official botanical garden for the State of Tennessee, the collections are part of the University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture. The UT Gardens mission is to foster appreciation, education and stewardship of plants through garden displays, educational programs and research trials. The Gardens are open during all seasons and free to the public. For more information, see the Gardens website: utia.tennessee.edu/state-