One of the area’s annual events for plant and flower lovers is sprouting.
The Near Northwest Management District will hold its annual Spring Plant Sale on Saturday at the White Oaks Conference Center, 7603 Antoine Dr., to raise funds for continuing maintenance of its on-site White Oak Butterfly and Hummingbird Garden.
“One of the most important parts of this whole thing was just getting people out and about,” said Heidi Sheesley, the owner of Treesearch Farms and a renowned horticulturist who first threw out the idea for the garden nearly a decade ago.
The event, which is entering its ninth year, will kick off at 9 a.m. with Sheesley’s presentation featuring many of the plants available at the sale to help event goers understand the plants, planting and growth of those plants in their garden.
Saturday’s sale will run from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. or until plants sell out. Such is the allure of the NNMD’s annual event that it has drawn visitors from areas such as Clear Lake, Sugar Land and Victoria.
“The garden has really brought people out – neighbors have gotten to meet their other neighbors, and it’s brought people in from all over,” Sheesley said. “More and more people are learning about this part of Houston.”
Strolling through the White Oak Butterfly and Hummingbird Garden, which was designed and planted in 2012, is one way for attendees to get ideas for their own yards and see the plants in a garden setting. During Sheesley’s presentation, visitors will learn about the different hummingbird- and butterfly-attracting plants, what they do, where to plant them and how they grow.
“The garden is remarkable to the community, and during the heights of the season we frequently see daycare groups visiting the garden to see the butterflies,” NNMD president Wayne Norden said. “The variety is remarkable.”
NNMD’s garden specializes in hummingbird and butterfly plants, ornamental grass, native shrubs, tomatoes, trees, perennials and many more.
“Many people wish they could grow plants like they see in the garden,” Norden said. “The inspirational talk helps people understand the ease and benefit of having your personal garden, and most of the plants in the sale are propagated to grow in Houston’s climate.”
In past years, the plant sale has drawn hundreds of attendees to the conference center with species not found anywhere else — such as the Mexican Butterfly Vine, Pride of Barbados, Hardy Gloxinia, St. Elmo’s Fire Russelia, Royal Purple Iochroma and YellowEyed Grass along with flowering plants, tomatoes and herbs.
“There’s so much different stuff there that you’ll see, but it’s not the typical things you would see a landscaper put in a garden,” Sheesley said. “It’s always a challenge to have new stuff so we can educate people on what might be new to them.”
For more information on the event, visit the Near Northwest Management District’s website at nnmd.org.