Local History: The Heirloom Gardener

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Program Description


The Heirloom Gardener draws from John Forti’s new book of traditional plants and skills for the modern world. Richly illustrated with period images and contemporary woodcuts, his presentation shares inspiration from our long history of heirloom preservation, garden craft and homestead lifeways. Artisanal lifestyles that are helping us to rebuild vibrant local agricultural economies and celebrate sustainable cottage industries that are contributing to our new, homegrown American arts & crafts movement and backyard environmentalism. At a time when we could all use a little good news, we hope you will join us for a refreshing look at how you can make a difference in your own backyard and community. Check out John’s book from the library! The Heirloom Gardener: Traditional Plants and Skills for the Modern World.

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John Forti is a garden historian and ethnobotanist who has directed gardens for Plimoth Plantation Museum, Strawbery Banke Museum, Massachusetts Horticultural Society, and Bedrock Gardens. As a Slow Food Slow Food USA Governor and biodiversity specialist, his preservation work has helped to restore countless native and heirloom plants and has brought traditional artisanal practices to modern thinking. He has won numerous awards for historic garden preservation, children’s garden design, herbal and historical education and the 2021 Award of Excellence from National Garden Clubs, the largest volunteer gardening organization in the world. This book was inspired by his posts as The Heirloom Gardener - John Forti which go out regularly to millions on Facebook that value his uniquely curated blend of history, horticulture, environmentalism, poetry, art, kitchen and garden craft. He gardens and lives along the banks of the Piscataqua River in Maine. Find out more at jforti.com.