Garfield Farm Heading

Garfield Farm home page | News Index

News from Garfield Farm

Heirloom Garden Show August 25

Campton Hills, IL On Sunday August 25 from 11 am - 4 pm, learn from the backyard gardeners how their favorite old varieties of vegetables, fruits, and flowers fared in 2019 at the annual Heirloom Garden Show at Garfield Farm Museum.

     With a long winter, a wet and cool spring well into summer, and finally a dry spell, gardening was not a sure thing in 2019. The museum barely got its two rare varieties of potatoes in and the Antique Flower Garden was planted a week late as weather was a challenge. Even though it was the best controlled burn season in years for the 50 plus acres of prairie, savanna and wetlands at the museum, the rains may have enhanced the excessive growth of invasive plant species while the native species seem to take it all in stride.

     Sundayís show will bring gardeners from Iowa, Indiana and Illinois together to share their tips, produce and some seeds with a faithful core of show attendees and first time visitors. As each yearís show depends on the previous yearís yield that produced the seeds for this yearís harvest, insight for seed abundance for 2020 crops will undoubtedly be of concern.

     Visitors taking the prairie tour will see how the native plants fared and get a hint of their seed production. Monarch butterflies may be present as their numbers were better this year than the previous two years. 

   Preserving historic varieties of produce and crops  is a hedge against inevitable change. As the rate of change is accelerating with world population growth, economic cycles, and weather extremes, having alternatives to meet such changes is critical. having a public that understands the value of plant genetics developed over the centuries is as crucial as understanding from where foods come.

   Last minute displays are welcome. If one would like to display heirloom varieties at the show, contact the museum at 630-584-8485 or for registration information. There are no fees for exhibitors. Lectures are welcome.

     There will also be tours of the 1846 Teamster Inn and Tavern and the museumís recently restored 1906 dairy barn.. There is a $6 donation for adults and $3 for children 12 years and younger.

   Garfield Farm Museum is five miles west of Geneva, IL off ILL Route 38 on Garfield Road. The 374 acre museum is supported by donations and is the only surviving historically intact former 1840ís Illinois prairie farmstead and teamster inn being restored as an 1840ís working farm museum.