Gardeners urged to enter in fair competition.

The Pottawatomie County Free Fair starts next week. It is time to look around your garden to see what you can enter. You might get a ribbon and if you do, a small stipend goes with it.


Beginning at 3 p.m. until 6 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 3, gardeners can bring their entry forms to the Fair Grounds and Master Gardeners will take them. Forms can be obtained at the Pottawatomie County OSU Extension Center at the corner of MacArthur and Acme Road between 8:30 and 4:30 on weekdays or you can pick them up at the Fairgrounds in the horticulture area on Wednesday, Sept. 3.


The plants can be taken to the Fairgrounds on Wednesday or you can wait to bring them until Thursday morning to insure their freshness. They must be in place before 11 a.m. on Thursday, Sept. 4 when judging begins.


You can enter such things as apples, pears, peaches or potted plants and cut flowers. Be sure that you notice the number of fruits or stems of cut flowers requested. If 5 are requested and you submit 7, the entry will be disqualified.


Some examples from the Potted Plants and Flowers and Cut Flower listing include verbena, gaillardia, small and large zinnias, marigolds, lantana, hardy phlox and periwinkles plus ferns, roses and hanging baskets. To see a complete listing, go to the website, and choose “Fairbook”. After that scroll down and click on 2014 Plant Science. Keep scrolling down until you find the listing of fruits and vegetables. After that you will see the listing of potted plants and flowers.


Even if you don’t take an entry, plan to visit the Pottawatomie County Free Fair and enjoy the many entries from 4-H members, the horticulture exhibits, and all the animals, both small and large. In addition the Conference Center will have an extensive assortment of booths ranging from items to purchase, political candidate representatives, Shawnee Chamber of Commerce, Shawnee Public Library, Master Gardeners, and many others. For information about the fair schedule go to and click on “ Schedule” to see the complete listing of all the opportunities during this wonderful annual event. I hope to see you there.