Windham--A nationally acclaimed Hudson Valley organic gardener, author and blogger has been tapped as the keynote speaker for the annual University of Vermont (UVM) Extension Master Gardener Conference, Oct. 13.

Margaret Roach's presentation, "Nonstop Plants: A Garden for 365 Days," will explore garden design and plants for year-round gardens that engage all the senses not just sight. She also will provide tips for planning a garden that will attract birds and wildlife at the statewide conference to be held at the Fourth Corner Foundation in Windham. Roach, a former editorial director for Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, shares her gardening expertise through her books and website, A Way to Garden.

The theme for the conference, sponsored by the UVM Extension Master Gardener Program in southern Vermont, is Six Seasons of Gardening. Early bird registration (until Oct. 1) is $35 for Extension Master Gardeners, $50 for the general public. After that date, the fee increases by $10. Lunch is included.

The registration deadline is Oct. 12. For details and to register, go to To request a disability-related accommodation to participate, call Beret Halverson at (802) 656-1777 by Sept. 21.

The conference gets underway with a talk by Kate Kerin, owner of Akadia Design Landscape and landscape curator for Innisfree Garden in Millbrook, New York. She will discuss sustainable landscaping and the Japanese tradition of wabi-sabi using examples from Innisfree.

Gardeners also will hear from Jan Johnsen, a professional landscape designer and a principal of Johnsen Landscapes and Pools in Mount Kisco, New York, on using stones and stonework in landscaping. UVM Extension Master Gardener Mike Ather, owner of in Middlesex, will talk about growing plants under lights and offer a hands-on herb planting experience as part of his session.

Amy Ivy will describe ways to extend the growing season using covers and tunnels with recommendations for all types of gardens and budgets. Ivy is the regional vegetable specialist for Cornell Cooperative Extension's Eastern New York Commercial Horticulture Program.

Conference participants also will have an opportunity to tour the Fourth Corner Foundation gardens and visit the vendor exhibits.

If questions, contact the UVM Extension Master Gardener Program office at (802) 656-9562 or


Cindy M Heath