As the Vermont State Fair comes to a close, once again, the fairground gardens were prominently displayed. The Rutland County Extension Service Master Gardeners planted and maintained the ten gardens around the fairgrounds with dedication. Anyone attending this year’s fair, will tell you that the gardens were absolutely beautiful, despite the fact, that many of them had to be completely replaced, replanted and repaired following the destructive storms earlier in the year. Patti Westberg extensively watered all the gardens throughout the summer to keep looking their very best.
In addition to the Midway, the fair food, the animals and the entertainment, the fairgoers are always interested in visiting the Bergstrom building, and seeing the plants and vegetables, the gardens and other agricultural aspects — especially on Agriculture Education Day.
It was a record year for flower entries, the giant pumpkin, and the culinary exhibits — all were outstanding. Also, the 4-H population continues to carry on a healthy tradition of encouraging young people to follow domestic and agricultural pursuits.
Ron Hebert, in his composting shed area, again shared his expertise on “all things rotten,” an important part of the agricultural cycle.
Special thanks go out to Emmitt Perry, who originally started the hillside garden, and Gary Clifford, who constructed the waterfall garden and pond next to the hillside garden. Both gardens are a beautiful respite to anyone walking up the path to the Bergstrom building.
Jan Sherman was also instrumental in planning and designing the gardens. She helped to replant and repair the damaged gardens along with Patti Westberg and others. And then, of course, an appreciative thank you to all the Master Gardeners who give of their time, talent and efforts, to help make the fair enjoyable and successful each year.
Elaine Nordmeyer, Superintendent,Vermont State Fair Floriculture Department, Hubbardton