The Scott Arboretum of Swarthmore College has selected Dale Deppe, president and owner of Spring Meadow Nursery, as the 2016 Scott Medal and Award recipient. The annual award is designed to be given annually to an individual, organization or corporate body who, in the opinion of the Selection Committee, has made an outstanding national contribution to the science and the art of gardening.
Since starting Spring Meadow Nursery as a small liner production company in 1981 with his wife Liz, the nursery has become a world-renowned 200-acre propagation nursery. The nursery has grown tremendously over the years and features state of the art facilities, a breeding and evaluation program, and an outstanding display garden.
Under Deppe’s guidance, Spring Meadow Nursery has made many important introductions including Hydrangea paniculata 'Limelight' which has received a Gold Medal from the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society, and a Royal Horticultural Society Award of Garden Merit. It has become the standard by which other H. paniculata selections are judged. Other hydrangeas from Spring Meadow Nursery include Incrediball Hydrangea arborescens, an improved ‘Annabelle’ with stronger stems and larger blooms, and Invincibelle Spirit Hydrangea, the first arborescens with pink blooms. Since its introduction in 2009, sales from this special plant have raised over $900,000 for the Breast Cancer Research Foundation.
Long an active supporter of the Horticultural Research Institute, Dale and Liz Deppe created the Spring Meadow Nursery endowment fund to provide scholarships for horticulture students and financial support for research projects. To date, the endowment fund has reached $642,000. Several prestigious awards have been granted to Deppe including the International Plant Propagators Society Award of Honor and Award of Merit and the Grower of the Year Award from the Michigan Nursery and Landscape Association.