Home & Garden

Press Releases

Spring Garden Fair and Plant Sale Returns to Union County May 21


A rainy spring is setting the stage for a promising summer growing season, and gardening enthusiasts can stock up on plants, seedlings and other supplies at the 28th annual Master Gardeners of Union County Spring Garden Fair and Plant Sale.

The Spring Garden Fair takes place this year on Sunday May 21, 12:00 noon to 4:00 p.m. on the grounds of the Union County Demonstration Garden, located by the Trailside Nature and Science Center in the Watchung Reservation at 452 New Providence Road in Mountainside.

“A visit to the Spring Garden Fair is a fun, inspiring way to kick off the growing season,” said Freeholder Chairman Bruce H. Bergen. “The event is packed with activities for all ages, and our Master Gardeners offer guidance and information for gardeners at every level of experience from beginner on up.”

Sign Up for E-News

As always, admission to the Garden Fair is free, and parking is also free. Visitors are advised that all sales are cash only.

“All proceeds from the Garden Fair and Plant Sale go to fund the many volunteer activities of the Master Gardeners, including community projects and educational programs,” said Freeholder Bette Jane Kowalski. “Stocking up at the Garden Fair is a good way to help the mission of this outstanding volunteer organization while improving your own garden, too.”

Among the hundreds of plants and seedlings offered for sale, the Spring Garden Fair features deer resistant, drought tolerant and fragrant plants that thrive in Union County, including many easy-to-grow plants for beginner gardeners.

The Spring Garden Fair is also known for a large selection of herbs and tomatoes including the popular Ramapo and the new Rutgers 250.

Along with plants, baked goods, books, crafts, and garden supplies for sale, the Spring Garden Fair offers free activities for gardeners of all ages including:

  • Guided tours of the Demonstration Garden including the vegetable and herb gardens.
  • Displays and information for Square Foot Gardening, rain barrels and rain gardens.
  • Information on joining the Master Gardeners and the 4-H Master Tree Stewards.
  • Children's activities (children must be accompanied by adult during activities).
  • Garden clinic and Rutgers information fact sheets for troubleshooting garden problems.

Attendees can bring plant and insect samples for diagnosis, and a Rutgers soil test kit is available for sale.

Free parking is located nearby at the Trailside Nature and Science Center parking lot and the Scout Camping Area in the Watchung Reservation. Additional free parking is available in the Loop playground area, located a short walk away on the other side of the Trailside Center.

Visitors are advised to bring a small wagon to convey their purchases. Sorry – no pets are permitted at the Garden Fair.

The Spring Garden Fair is organized each year by the Rutgers Master Gardeners of Union County, an all-volunteer organization run by the Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Union County and supported in part by the Freeholder Board. Anyone with an interest in gardening and volunteer service can become a Master Gardener. No previous education or training in horticulture is required. 

Among the Master Gardeners many volunteer services are the free Garden Helpline (908-654-9852) where residents can receive gardening advice, horticulture programs for people with special needs, and a community gardening speakers' bureau.

The group’s work in the Union County Demonstration Garden has yielded thousands of pounds of fresh produce for local food pantries and many donations of cut flowers to cancer centers along with other projects and programs.

For more information on the Master Gardeners program contact Judi Laganga at the Extension, 908-654-9854 (ext. 2), or visit online at ucnj.org/rce. The Extension offices are located in the Colleen Frasier county services building, 300 North Avenue East in Westfield.

More information on the Rutgers Master Gardeners of Union County is available at mastergardeners-uc.org.

For quick links to all Union County programs related to gardening, sustainability and nature conservation visit The Green Connection, ucnj.org/green-connection.

For all Union County programs and services visit ucnj.org, call the Public Info Line, 877-424-1234, email info@ucnj.org or use the online Contact Form.

Connect with Union County on social media.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News


Elizabeth Man Gets 25 Years for Sexual Assault of Child at Linden Motel

March 24, 2018

ELIZABETH, NJ - Jonathan Tavara-Nima, 32, of Elizabeth has been sentenced to 25 years in state prison for sexually assaulting a young child he was hired to care for in May of  2017. 

An investigation by the Union County Prosecutor’s Office Special Victims Unit and the Union Police Department revealed Tavara-Nima was hired by the then-6-year-old girl's family in 2016 via the ...

Synopsis of Westfield Board of Education Meeting on March 19

March 22, 2018

Following the board announcements, I noted the increased police presence at each of our ten schools, thanking the town and police department for their efforts.  I also noted that we’ve been working on updating our crisis communication plan in light of today’s climate of instant communication.

Board president Gretchan Ohlig thanked the mayor and police chief for working with ...

Upcoming Events


Sat, March 24, 10:00 AM


March for Our Lives - Westfield

Government Law & Justice

Sat, March 24, 10:00 AM

Burent Middle School , Union

Union County Wide - March for Our Lives

Government Law & Justice


Sun, March 25, 11:00 AM

Shackamaxon Country Club, Scotch Plains

Hear Our Voices: MemoryCare Plays

Health & Wellness

Westfield Police Blotter: More Than $2K Worth of Items Reported Stolen from Business, & More

March 21, 2018

March 11, 2018 6:42 p.m.

Marion Bethea, age 56, of Roselle, was arrested on the strength of an outstanding warrant for her arrest from Columbia Municipal Court in the amount of $500 pursuant to a motor vehicle stop. Subject was processed and released on recognizance.


March 16, 2018 11:16 a.m.

Blas Barquin, age 34, of Cranford, NJ, was arrested on the strength of an outstanding ...

Video: Dietze Indicates Equity Drop Means Investors Should Go Bargain Hunting

March 24, 2018

Point View Wealth Management's Founder, President and Chief Investment Strategist, David Dietze, live on CNBC on taking advantage of market weakness to find investment opportunities right now!


For nearly 25 years, Point View Wealth Management, Inc. has been working with families in Summit and beyond, providing customized portfolio ...

Westfield Parents Host 25th Annual Awareness Expo

More than 200 parents, educators and other members of the Westfield community attended the 25th Annual Awareness Expo on March 14, hearing from well-regarded specialists on such topics as resilience, anxiety, decoding dyslexia and more.

“As a relative newcomer to special education three years ago, I have been overwhelmed by the quality of support this committee offers to ...

Staying On Top

Some people are bulldozers. They move mountains, conquer countries, achieve the seemingly impossible. But then when there are no more mountains to climb, they falter. Routines, maintenance and sustainability are not their strong points. They respond to excitement and challenge, not to the uneventful, monotonous daily grind.

The title word of this week's Parshah, Tzav, means ...

White Standard Poodle Missing from 700 Block of Belvidere Ave. in Plainfield

A Plainfield neighbor in the 700 block of Belvidere Ave. is missing Chanel, her standard white poodle, who ran out the door and was last seen near Leland and Cushing avenues toward Union County College on Wednesday evening.

Chanel is not wearing a collar or tags, and is not micro-chipped.  She has been recently groomed and weighs about 36 pounds.  She is friendly, but may not come if ...

'Trying' explores age, youth and points of history in poignant production

‘Trying’ explores youth, age and points of history in poignant production

By Liz Keill

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ – The George Street Playhouse presents an engrossing, two-character play based on the real life of Francis Biddle, former Attorney General.

Biddle, a Harvard educated lawyer, served under Franklin Roosevelt and later Harry Truman during the Nuremberg Tribunal. His ...

Can I Change My Partner?

March 21, 2018

Couples oftentimes look to change the “other.” “If only” the other would make these changes, or do as I say, our relationship would be great. We tend to focus on the other. We tend to focus on changing the other. We tend to focus on the other’s negative behavior. Couples like to report what their spouse/partner is doing and how they are ...

16 Homes Sold Last Week in Westfield, Scotch Plains, Fanwood, Mountainside & Cranford

Sixteen homes sold last week, March 11 to March 18, 2018, in Westfield, Scotch Plains, Fanwood, Mountainside and Cranford:*


TOWN        ADDRESS                  STYLE           RMS    ...


AtlantiCast: Episode 13

On this episode of AtlantiCast, new clinical studies in the fields of cardiology and immunotherapy, national and statewide recognitions for Atlantic Health System medical centers and the inaugural AtlantiCast Collab Challenge!


Financially Savvy Charitable Giving: Donor-Advised Funds

Americans are known to be philanthropic, with an estimated 83% donating to charitable causes. Making the donation convenient and tax-effective is a win-win for both charities and those with a generous heart. Donor-advised funds (DAFs) are a simplistic funding structure available to those with both small and large charitable giving pots.  

Mechanics of Donor Funds

DAFs can be set up ...

Suspended Hillsborough HS Athletic Director Charged with Theft

March 19, 2018

HILLSBOROUGH, NJ — Suspended Hillsborough High School Athletic Director Michael Fanizzi has been arrested and charged with the theft of $10,704 in athletic event receipts over a four-year period from 2013-2017, according to Somerset County Prosecutor Michael H. Robertson.

Fanizzi, 53, a resident of Conover Way in Hillsborough who had been athletics director for 14 years, had been ...