As winter settles over Wisconsin, the 22nd-annual Wisconsin Public Television Garden
Expo brings a bit of spring-like warmth to the Exhibition Hall at the Alliant Energy Center in
Madison Feb. 13-15. Event hours are: 3 to 9 p.m. Friday, Feb. 13; 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 14
and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 15.
Wisconsin Public Television (WPT) hosts the community educational event and fundraiser in
partnership with UW-Extension Horticulture. Proceeds support WPT’s quality programming and events
that serve to enrich the Wisconsin community. Advance tickets are available now online at
This year’s event features the newest innovations in lawn and garden tools with information and
advice spread among lush green plants, colorful flowers and vibrant designs of spring. New this year is an
expanded focus on food, from the bounties of home gardens to the fresh delicacies from Wisconsin’s
farms. Visitors are invited to explore the inaugural Garden Expo Farmers Market in the Exhibition Hall Atrium 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 15. The Farmer’s Market will feature farmers, food artisans
and local food retailers.
More Highlights from this year’s event include:
- Hundreds of exhibitor booths selling seeds, plants, books, tools, lawn equipment and other
exciting merchandise for gardens and yards of all sizes, along with nonprofit groups specializing
in mulching, various plant species, rain gardens, rock gardens, conservation efforts and more.
- Nearly 150 free educational seminars and demonstrations on topics including lawns, gardens,
landscape design and more.
- Hands-on workshops that allow gardeners to take home a finished garden decoration, craft or
- UW-Extension Horticulture experts available to offer insight, plant identification, and tips to
gardeners and landscapers of all levels.
- The 1,600 square-foot Wisconsin Nursery and Landscapers Association (WNLA) Central Garden.
- A Garden Expo raffle for prizes including landscape packages, equipment, decorations, tools and
The 2015 Garden Expo also features the following new events:
- Learn From Gardening Expert Melinda Myers - Nationally known gardening expert, TV/radio
host, author and columnist Melinda Myers has more than 30 years of horticulture experience.
Melinda is a columnist and contributing editor for Birds & Blooms magazine and has written over
20 gardening books. She also hosts the nationally syndicated Melinda’s Garden Moment
segments that air on over 130 TV and radio stations throughout the U.S. Melinda previously
hosted seven seasons of Great Lakes Gardener on PBS. Thanks to support from the American
Transmission Corporation, Melinda will offer two seminars at Garden Expo: “Create a Colorful
Garden Filled with Birds, Butterflies, and Blossoms” at 9:15 a.m. on Saturday and “Shade
Gardening Beyond Hostas” at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday.
- Meet Around the Farm Table’s Inga Witscher - Meet Inga Witscher, fourth generation organic
dairy farmer and host of Around the Farm Table, the popular series on Wisconsin Public
Television. The show offers viewers an intimate look at Wisconsin’s farmers and artisan food
producers. Inga will greet visitors and distribute recipe cards during Garden Expo at the
Wisconsin Public Television booth 4-6 p.m. Friday, and 10 a.m.-Noon Saturday. She will also
host a stage demonstration, “Gathering in the Garden: Ideas and Recipes for Your Next Garden
Party” at 12:30 p.m. on Saturday
- Meet Jerry Apps - A celebrated rural historian and author of Garden Wisdom among dozens of
other books, Jerry Apps will present his seminar, “Garden Wisdom: Lessons Learned From 60
Years of Gardening” at Garden Expo 2:15 p.m. Saturday.
- Learn From Best-Selling Author Joel Karsten - Joel Karsten is the author of two best-selling
books on straw bale gardening. In March 2013, the New York Times called his method
“revolutionary” in a full-page feature article that helped launch his latest book, "Straw Bale
Gardens." Joel’s technique shows you how to grow a garden without weeding, heavy lifting,
getting down on your hands and knees, herbicides or insecticides. Joel will share how any
backyard, concrete patio, rooftop or driveway can become a productive garden space. Joel will
present the seminar “Learn how to Grow a Straw Bale Garden” at 4:30 p.m. on Friday, 10:30 a.m.
on Saturday, and 10:15 a.m. on Sunday. He will also offer stage demonstration presentations on
"Building a Straw Bale Garden, Starting With Bales" at 6:30 p.m. Friday, 2:30 p.m. Saturday and
1:30 p.m. Sunday.
Single-day tickets for Garden Expo cost $7 in advance and $8 at the door. Children 12 and under
are admitted free. Two-day passes are available for $11 in advance and $12 at the door. Three-day
passes are available in advance for $16 and $17 at the door.
Advance ticket vendor outlets are located conveniently around the state in various supporting
businesses. A complete list is available at wigardenexpo.com. Visitors also can purchase advance
tickets at the website. There is an additional charge for parking at the Alliant Energy Center.
All proceeds from Garden Expo support quality public broadcasting in Wisconsin. It is an event
presented by WPT, Friends of WPT and UW-Extension Horticulture.
Garden Expo is generously supported by premier sponsors WNLA, Green Power Tomorrow and
Keleny Top Soil Inc.
WPT is a service of the Educational Communications Board and University of WisconsinExtension.
Wisconsin Public Television is a place to grow through learning on WHA-TV, Madison; WPNETV, Green Bay; WHRM-TV, Wausau; WLEF-TV, Park Falls; WHLA-TV, La Crosse; and WHWC-TV,