Northeast Regional Conference
A.R.S. Districts 6 (New England), 7 (New York - northern New Jersey) and 8 (southern New Jersey to Susquehanna Valley) are collaborating to sponsor a regional meeting on the weekend of November 8th and 9th. This will be at the Danbury Hilton Inn, in Danbury, Connecticut - a central location chosen for its accessibility within an easy half-day's drive for the farthest members in the ten-chapter area. The proceedings will begin with lunch Saturday noon and conclude early Sunday afternoon.
Our program has been planned with something for everyone: a series of subjects and speakers to inform and entertain you, no matter what your level of expertise. Some of the highlights:
- Ed Collins, District 8 Director, will astound his audience with some of the spectacular "Heritage Hybrids" now coming into maturity in the forgotten corners of the former Dexter estate in Sandwich, Massachusetts.
- Dr. John Einset, Professor of Biology at Harvard and a staff member of the Arnold Arboretum, will share with us some results of his research into the cold hardiness of woody plants.
- Don Hyatt, District 9 Director, and Peg Megowen, noted landscape designer, will present two different views on the use of rhododendrons and azaleas in the home landscape.
- Dr. Herb Spady, District 4 Director, a former president of the Portland Chapter, current president of the Rhododendron Species Foundation, nurseryman, lecturer, hybridizer, author, and ardent fan of the genus, will give us some thoughts on rhododendron evolution - how they relate to other plants, and why they have certain needs.
- Dr. Donald Craig, retired Director of the Kentville Research Station to Nova Scotia and a past president of the Rhododendron Society of Canada, will tell us about the Kentville rhododendron and azalea breeding program over the past decades and show us some of the splendid results achieved to date.
Sunday morning will feature a series of workshop/clinics on a variety of practical topics, such as:
- Pests and diseases, Don Hyatt's famous "sick plant clinic".
- Rhododendron nutrition, with Susan Gordon of the University of Rhode Island.
- Rhododendron and azalea propagation.
- Basic cultural practices, with Dick Gustafson, past president of the Princeton Chapter. The workshops will be repeated, so that you may attend two or three different sessions of your choice.
A plant sale, featuring rarer and hard-to-find rhododendrons and azaleas in smaller sizes from several northeast sources, will round out the weekend's activities. You'll have more to spend on plants, because the Hilton Inn has given our group a special weekend room rate.
Full details, including registration costs and information, will be sent in early fall mailings to all A.R.S. members in the ten chapters - District 6: (Connecticut, Massachusetts), District 7: (New Jersey, New York, Princeton, Tappan Zee), District 8: (Philadelphia, Pine Barrens, Susquehanna Valley, Valley Forge).
Others - A.R.S. members as well as non-members - are also most welcome. Registration information may be obtained from the Conference Registrar: Cheri Cooper, Concord, MA. Come join us for an informative and enjoyable weekend!