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March 24, 2009

Illustrated lecture at Maymont's Herbs Galore and More features "Flowers and Herbs of Early America"

Colonial Williamsburg curator of plants Lawrence Griffith will present an illustrated lecture at Maymont’s Herbs Galore and More Festival on Saturday, April 25 on the Carriage House Lawn at Maymont, 1700 Hampton St., Richmond.

Griffith will speak on his latest book, “Flowers and Herbs of Early America,” from 10:30-11:30 a.m. in the Stone Barn. A leading historic plant expert, his lecture will pull from five years of research in primary documents as well as experience gained from live field trials. A book signing will follow.

Illustrated with elegant period engravings and striking contemporary photographs by Barbara Temple Lombardi, the book is a dazzling visual treat for armchair gardeners and admirers of Colonial Williamsburg’s famous gardens. Lombardi will be present at the book signing.

Gifts from Janet and Fred Brubaker of Somerset, Pa., Teresa and Ken Wood of Chester Springs, Pa., and the Mars Foundation of McLean have made possible this exquisitely photographed and meticulously researched book of Colonial Williamsburg’s Historic Area flowers and herbs.

Maymont is celebrating the 25th anniversary of Herbs Galore and More. This year's event will offer great new ideas for your garden and fun ways to go green -- in color and conservation. Herbalscapes give gardeners inspiration for their own small spaces as they admire garden displays by area high school horticulture students. Peruse through the newly added collection of "recycled" (second-hand) garden-related items, including books, decorative pots and birdfeeders, at the From One Garden to Another bargain booth. Sign up for great classes for every gardening level and interest, and enjoy free demonstrations on the Marketplace lawn throughout the day.

A highlight of the event is the Marketplace on the Lawn which features more than 40 vendors from the mid-Atlantic who will sell every imaginable herb as well as annuals, perennials, trees, vegetables, herbal products and crafts for this one-of-a-kind event. A percentage of vendors' sales from the event is donated to Maymont. Fountain Bookstore of Richmond will sell “Flowers and Herbs of Early America” during the show from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Admission to the Marketplace is $3 for the general public and free for Maymont members and children under 12. Fees vary for classes; advance registration is recommended.

Maymont, the 100-acre Victorian country estate on the banks of the James River, was donated to the city of Richmond by Major and Mrs. James H. Dooley. Now maintained and operated by the private, nonprofit Maymont Foundation, it features the opulent Maymont Mansion and original Italian and Japanese gardens in addition to a carriage collection, children’s farm, extensive arboretum, nature center and native Virginia wildlife exhibits, including the newly opened bald eagle habitat and raptor valley. For more information about Herbs Galore and Maymont or to sign up for the lecture or other classes, please visit the Web site at

“Flowers and Herbs of Early America” can be purchased at WILLIAMSBURG Booksellers in Colonial Williamsburg’s Visitor Center, 101A Visitor Center Drive, by phone at 1-800-446-9240 or at The book is published by the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation in association with Yale University Press, which will distribute books outside Colonial Williamsburg’s Historic Area. The suggested retail price for the book is $50.

Established in 1926, the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation is the not-for-profit educational institution that preserves and operates the restored 18th-century Revolutionary capital of Virginia as a town-sized living history museum, telling the inspirational stories of our nation’s founding men and women.

Williamsburg is located in Virginia’s Tidewater region, 20 minutes from Newport News, within an hour’s drive of Richmond and Norfolk, and 150 miles south of Washington, D.C., off Interstate 64. For more information about Colonial Williamsburg, call 1-800-HISTORY or visit Colonial Williamsburg’s Web site at

Media Contact:
Penna Rogers
(757) 220-7121