Everyone is Invited to the Celebration and Sale

2015 UT Gardens Gala guests Troy Marden and Cornelia Holland

The recent UT Gardens Gala honored Cornelia Holland of Franklin, Tenn., for her living gift of more than 800 plants from her private hosta garden. Holland is shown here at the Gala with Troy Marden, of Nashville Public Television's 'Volunteer Gardener' show, who was also a Gala guest. The photo is courtesy of another guest, Gloria Jackson, of White, GA. Download image.

​The new "Tranquility-The Cornelia B. Holland Hosta Garden" will be dedicated on June 7 at 2 p.m at the UT Gardens, Knoxille. The public is invited to the free event, which will be followed by a hosta sale to benefit the garden.  Mrs. Holland is shown in another image in her private garden in Middle Tennessee. Photo by P. McDaniels, courtesy UTIA. Download image.


KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Hostas are the number one shade perennial sold in the United States and now the University of Tennessee Gardens is among the top sites in the United States where visitors can see an extensive collection of hosta plants.
Thanks to a generous benefactor, Cornelia Holland of Franklin, Tenn., the UT Gardens, Knoxville, has added a hosta garden that features more than 500 hosta varieties. Holland, who has been collecting hosta plants since 1995, allowed UT Gardens personnel to collect divisions from her extensive personal garden that includes both species and hybrid plants.
Troy Marden, gardening author, landscape designer and co-host for the Nashville Public Television show “Volunteer Gardener” knew Holland and her plant collection, and he introduced her to Susan Hamilton, Director of the UT Gardens. The UT Gardens is a program of the UT Institute of Agriculture and its three sites statewide are collectively known as the State Botanical Garden. Their mission is to foster appreciation, education and stewardship of plants through educational programs, displays and research trials. They are open free to the public. After Marden’s introduction, Holland knew that she’d found the perfect place for her collection to continue to grow and to benefit others.
“The UT Garden provided a venue for the public to enjoy and learn about hosta and also a living laboratory for UT faculty and students,” Holland said.

The plants were installed last fall and are now thriving in the newly created
display garden called “Tranquility—The Cornelia B. Holland Hosta Garden.” The American Hosta Society has declared the collection as one of just 23 official hosta display gardens in North America. It’s one of only three in the Southeast, with the other two residing at Clemson University and the Memphis Botanic Garden.
Tranquility is now open to the public and will be formally dedicated on June 7 at 2 p.m. A hosta sale will follow the dedication to benefit the new garden. All are invited to participate.
“We are indebted to Mrs. Holland for gifting her incredible private collection of more than 800 different hostas to us and for supporting the construction of this garden so that thousands of visitors may enjoy it for years to come,” said Susan Hamilton, director of the UT Gardens. “With its extensive hosta collection and their innumerable companion plants, I anticipate Tranquility to be one of the most beautiful and educational Mid-South public shade gardens.”
Hosta is the botanical name of plants commonly known as hostas, plantain lilies (particularly in Britain) and occasionally giboshi (in Japan). The Hosta genus has around 45 different species and an estimated 5,000 different cultivars.
The UT Institute of Agriculture provides instruction, research and outreach through the UT College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources, the UT College of Veterinary Medicine, UT AgResearch, including its system of 10 research and education centers, and UT Extension offices in every county in the state.


Patricia McDaniels, UTIA Marketing and Communications, 615-835-4570,

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