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franklin county times

Roger Swain to speak in Meridian

By By Steve Strong / county extension service agent
June 26, 2002
Long before home and garden television channels were created, horticulture pioneers like Jim Wilson and Roger Swain were breaking new ground with the Public Broadcasting Service Victory Garden program.
This summer, Swain brings his unique brand of gardening wit and humor to Meridian for a special live presentation that every home gardener can really dig.
The Victory Garden guru will guide plant lovers on a magical mystery tour of gardening sound and spirit, offering a profound perspective that is as much "auditory" as it is "visual." There is much more than meets the eye to gardening, as the folks that attend the program will see and hear.
While there is no charge for admission, seating at MSU Meridian is limited, and interested gardeners should contact the Lauderdale County Extension office at 482-9764 to preregister. Callers can find out more about Roger Swain's visit to Meridian and the coinciding Victory Garden exhibit on display at Union Station throughout July.
The Smithsonian Institution has constructed a traveling road show highlighting "Produce On The Homefront – A Salute To Victory Gardens." The display showcases the contributions of home gardeners during times of war, both in food production and in boosting morale a great history lesson for children and gardeners of all ages.
For viewing times and background on the Victory Garden exhibit, contact Meridian Community Development at 485-1996 or Memory Tree Foundation Director Lou Pennebaker at 482-3685. These organizations work hand-in-hand with the MSU Extension Service to support our nation's veterans and all that our armed forces do to keep our country healthy and safe.
As a bit of trivia, readers may be interested to learn that the televised Victory Garden program is now in its 27th season on public television, and it is broadcast live each Saturday in the local viewing area (check listings for times).
Swain is in fact retiring from the program this year, so his trip to Meridian may be one of the last times we'll get to visit with him for a while (he's still supposed to guest host, though).
Russ Morash, producer and director of the Victory Garden, is also retiring from the show this season along with his wife Marian, who served as chef on the long-running series. Last but not least, former host Jim Wilson is a Mississippi native from Vicksburg, just another hometown boy done good.
To have Swain, the host of a television program that reaches more than 2 million viewers each week, is a great honor for Meridian. So remember to mark your calendar for the special July 19 program.
In the meantime, try listening to the heartbeat of your garden to hear what it has to say but first, you'll have to turn off that tiller and weed trimmer to stop the buzzing in your ears.