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Virtual Hydrangea University

July 9, 2021
  • Details
    • Dates: July 9, 2021
    • Location: Heritage Museums & Gardens, 67 Grove Street, Sandwich
    • Time: 8:30 AM to 12:30 PM

     Heritage Museums & Gardens and the Cape Cod Hydrangea Society are pleased to again partner to present the sixth edition of our annual Hydrangea University – the premier opening event of the annual Cape Cod Hydrangea Festival. This year’s event, which will again take place virtually, features the following expert speakers:  Tim Wood, Product Development Manager at Proven Winners/Spring Meadow Nurseries; Nita-Jo Roundtree, Garden Designer and Author; and Mal Condon, Curator of Hydrangeas at Heritage Museums & Gardens. Through an online webinar format, these presenters will inspire and entertain while increasing participants’ knowledge of hydrangeas.

     The live webinar will include time for questions, as well as a PDF of the slides for your reference. All program registrants will receive a link to the video recording, available for one week after the event. Advance registration is required. 

    As an added bonus with this virtual program, your registration entitles you to free admission to all of Heritage Museums & Gardens, including the Cape Cod Hydrangea Society Display Garden and the North American Hydrangea Test Garden, on any day during the Cape Cod Hydrangea Festival (July 9-18).

     Fee:  $45 Members of Heritage Museums & Gardens or the Cape Cod Hydrangea Society; $55 Non-Members

    Find more information and register online:  


    Presentation Topics for Virtual Hydrangea University 2021:

    • Mal Condon:  “The North American Hydrangea Test Garden at Heritage:  A Plant Performance Summary” – The North American HydrangeaTest Garden at Heritage was initially planted en masse in the spring of 2016. This year is the sixth growing season for these original plantings. Mal will share specific performance details and his key take-aways from this data regarding the hydrangea species macrophylla, arborescens, and paniculata.
    • Tim Wood:  “Advances in Hydrangea Breeding” – From old plants to brand new, we will examine the evolution of hydrangea breeding and get to know the stories and the breeders behind the plants. In addition, Tim will share a behind the scenes look into Spring Meadow Nursery’s hydrangea breeding program, the various species and goals they are working on, and the trailing processes used to determine if they make it into the Proven Winners plant brand. If you love hydrangeas, you will love this talk!   
    • Nita-Jo Roundtree:  “Perfect Partners” – Everyone knows that hydrangeas are a spectacular addition to any garden, but how can you create picture-perfect planting combinations with companion plants? Nita-Jo will show beautiful photos to illustrate that by following some of the rules of landscape design, your combinations can be worthy of the cover of a garden magazine!


    Speaker Bios:

    Mal Condon: A lifelong gardener, Mal has been collecting, propagating, and growing hydrangeas for more than 40 years. He and his wife Mary Kay owned and operated Hydrangea Farm Nursery on Nantucket Island for many years. Early in 2014 they relocated to Yarmouth Port on Cape Cod where they have created another significant hydrangea collection in their new location. As Curator of Hydrangeas, Mal is the “hydrangea whisperer” at Heritage Museums & Gardens, responsible for the many existing hydrangea plantings and assisting with the continued expansion of the genus in our gardens.


    Tim Wood:  The Proven Winners tagline is “A Better Garden Starts with a Better Plant.” As the Product Development Manager at Spring Meadow Nursery, Tim Wood’s job is find those better plants, and to share their merits with growers and landscapers. He is credited with discovering or breeding, and successfully launching over 300 new plants. Tim writes a blog called The Plant Hunter and has three books to his credit, including Tree and Shrub Gardening for Michigan. He studied and taught horticulture at Michigan State University. He has spent ten years in public horticulture with stints at Longwood Gardens, Harvard University, and the Chicago Botanic Garden. Of all his accomplishments, Tim is most proud of his role in raising over a million dollars for the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.


    Nita-Jo Rountree is a speaker, educator, and landscape designer.  She is a lifetime Georgia Master Gardener and former owner of LeGrand Gardens, a landscape design and installation company in Atlanta, Georgia.  She currently serves on the board of directors of the Bellevue Botanical Garden Society, is a member of the Heronswood Garden Steering Committee, and serves on the advisory board of the Northwest Horticultural Society, of which she is a former president.  Nita-Jo is a frequent speaker at the Northwest Flower & Garden Show, garden centers, and garden clubs.  Additionally, she is a frequent guest and substitute host on Gardening with Ciscoe, in Seattle, Washington.  Her personal garden was featured on the HGTV television show Gardening by the Yard and in the Pacific Northwest Magazine section of the Sunday Seattle Times.  Also, she is a member of Great Garden Speakers, the Garden Writers Association, the American Rose Society, and numerous regional nonprofit horticultural organizations.  Her book, Growing Roses in the Pacific Northwest, was published by Sasquatch Books.