USF Botanical Gardens Hosts Plant Festival Oct. 11 & 12

TAMPA, Fla. (Oct. 1, 2008) -The University of South Florida Botanical Gardens will host its eighteenth annual Fall Plant Festival Oct. 11 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Oct. 12 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Admission is $4 for the general public. USF Botanical Garden members and children under 12 are admitted free.

The Fall Festival features “ASK THE EXPERTS” with over 60 vendors selling plants and plant-related items filling the Botanical Gardens’ grounds. Vendors at this event include most local plant clubs and societies, as well as, commercial growers. Some of the plant clubs and societies selling at the event and offering information include those devoted to crotons, African violets, orchids, bromeliads, begonias, cacti and succulents, bamboo, bougainvillea, native plants, palms and cycads, camellias and more.

This year, the Gardens is proud to feature Tom MacCubbin, author, radio personality and extension agent emeritus as the special guest speaker at noon on Sunday. Saturday speakers offer their expertise in growing fruit trees in the Tampa Bay area with the Rare Fruit Council presenting an informative, tasty talk at noon.

The Plant Shop will be flush with fall color and fun, selling a wide assortment of vibrant plants and festival specials.

For more information call (813) 974-2329 or visit Mapquest: 12210 USF Pine Dr, Tampa 33620. The USF Botanical Garden is a non-profit, member- sponsored, educational facility. The Garden is open to the public seven days a week (except major holidays) with no admission charge. The Garden is located on the southwest corner of the Tampa campus, at Pine and Alumni drives, off of Bruce B. Downs Boulevard, just one block north of Fowler Avenue.

The mission of the USF Botanical Gardens is to foster appreciation, understanding and stewardship of our natural and cultural botanical heritage through living plant collections, displays, education and research.

The University of South Florida is one of the nation's top 63 public research universities and one of 39 community-engaged four-year public universities as designated by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. USF was awarded more than $360 million in research contracts and grants in FY 2007/2008. The university offers 219 degree programs at the undergraduate, graduate, specialist and doctoral levels, including the doctor of medicine. The university has a $1.8 billion annual budget, an annual economic impact of $3.2 billion, and serves more than 46,000 students on campuses in Tampa, St. Petersburg, Sarasota-Manatee and Lakeland. USF is a member of the Big East Athletic Conference.

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