Miksch Garden, Old Salem

Biennial Conference on Restoring Southern Gardens and Landscapes

Every two years, Southern Garden History Society co-sponsors a Conference on Restoring Southern Gardens and Landscapes in Winston-Salem, NC. The conference co-sponsors include Old Salem Museums & Gardens and Reynolda House Museum of American Art.

The conference’s mission is to discuss historical horticulture, garden history, and landscape restoration in the southern states. The program presents topics of interest to the professional and layman alike and provides participants an opportunity to learn and share information about this field in the South.

More information is available on the Old Salem website.


The 22nd biennial Conference on Southern Gardens & Landscapes, sponsored by Old Salem Museums & Gardens, Southern Garden History Society, and Wake Forest University Department of History, was held September 26-28, 2019, in Winston-Salem, NC. In Saturday’s session, Dreck Spurlock Wilson, ASLA, NOMA, presented “Closer than Botanists to Landscape Architects: George Washington Carver and David Augustus Williston.”





Due to time constraints, Mr. Wilson was unable to conclude his presentation with the documentary video “Wings for This Man.” Mr. Wilson states: “Wings for This Man” was filmed in 1941 by the U.S. Air Force and narrated by Des Moines, Iowa sportscaster Ronald Reagan. It is the only film record of landscape architect David Augustus Williston’s (1868-1962) landscape design and civil engineering of the Tuskegee Airfield (1941) where the legendary “Tuskegee Airmen” trained. Until now the declassified film has not been publicly viewed. 

Please click on image of film to view:







Previous Conferences:

2017 – Gardening in a Golden Age: Southern Gardens & Landscapes of the Early 20th Century and the Challenges to Their Preservation

2015 – Learning from the Past/Planting for the Future

2013 – Feeding the American South: Heritage Gardening & Farming

2011 – A New World: Naturalists and Artists in the American South

2009 – Returning to Our Roots: Planting and Replanting the Historic Southern Garden

2007 – Lost Landscapes, Preserved Prospects: Confronting Natural & Human Threats to the Historic Southern Landscape

2005 – Unearthing the Past, Planting the Future: Issues and Challenges in Southern Landscape Restoration

2003 – A Genius & His Legacy: Frederick Law Olmsted in the South

2001 – Cultivating History: Exploring Horticultural Practices of the Southern Gardener

1999 – Plans and Plants of the Southern Landscape

1997 – Breaking Ground: Examing the Vision and Practice of Historic Landscape Restoration

1995 – The Influence of Women on the Southern Landscape

1993 – Many People, Many Cultures: The Shaping of the Southern Landscape

1991 – The Southern Vernacular Landscape

1989 – Gardening for Pleasure in the South

1987 – Restoring Southern Gardens and Landscapes

1985 – 400 Years of Southern Gardens and Landscapes

1983 – Restoring Southern Gardens and Landscapes

1982 – Restoring Southern Gardens and Landscapes

1980 – Restoring Southern Gardens and Landscapes

1979 – Restoring Southern Gardens and Landscapes: A Conference for the States of the Upper South