Growers Invited for Plant Sale and Sessions on Fruit, Cucumbers, and Nuts

Picture of cucumbers
The 2019 Fruits of the Backyard Field Day will feature a session on cucumbers, as well as uncommon fruits and Tennessee nuts. Growers should plan to attend the event June 11 for the latest research and growing tips for these and other plants. Photo by N. Bumgarner, courtesy UTIA. Download image​

SPRING HILL, Tenn. – Plant the right cultivars and trees, and your backyard could yield cucumber salad, elderberry syrup, pecan pie and many other delicious foods. Learn how at the University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture’s Fruits of the Backyard Field Day on June 11. Session topics include nut trees that are native to Tennessee, cucumbers and vine crops for the backyard garden, and uncommon fruits, like elderberry, paw paw, and persimmon.

For the first time ever, this year’s Fruits of the Backyard event will also include a plant sale. The local Young Farmers and Ranchers group along with UT Extension Master Gardener programs have teamed up to provide an assortment of plants available for field day attendees to purchase.

The Center for Profitable Agriculture will be present, with special guests Joy and Tony Foster, owners of Blue Honey Farms in Williamson County. The Fosters will be available to answer questions about production and marketing and share the lessons they have learned.

Beginning at 8:30 a.m. and concluding at 12:30 p.m., this event is free and open to the public. Educational displays from the Institute, UT Extension, the Tennessee AgrAbility Project and several Columbia agricultural businesses will be set up in the exhibit tent. A display from Spring Hill High School agriculture students and educator Gwynne Evans showing the importance of honey bees for food production will be set up, as well.

The Middle Tennessee AgResearch and Education Center is located at 1000 Main Entrance Drive in Spring Hill Tennessee, on Highway 31 North. Located south of Nashville, MTREC is accessible from exit 53 from Interstate 65. Registration is not required, but anyone planning to attend with special needs or questions may contact Kevin Thompson, MTREC director, at 931-486-2129. More information can be found at the MTREC website at

Through its mission of research, teaching and extension, the University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture touches lives and provides Real. Life. Solutions.​.



Kevin Thompson, director,
Middle Tennessee AgResearch and Education Center, 931-486-2129,