Growing Color Symposium

March 11-12, 2020

About Growing Color

There is a growing demand for natural color for use in the textile, cosmetic, and food industries, but local sources for many of these dyes are scant. Growing Color is designed for professionals in the farming, herb, and textile industries and for anyone interested in the fascinating history and potential of plant-based color. The conference aims to focus awareness about issues and opportunities in plant dyes and encourage a sustainable natural dye industry in Western North Carolina.  The 2020 symposium will expand its emphasis to include growing naturally colored fibers with Sally Fox’s presentation on her research and development in naturally colored cotton.

Featured Speakers

Sarah Bellos | Catharine Ellis | Sally Fox | Rowland Ricketts  | Melanie Wilder

All Growing Color events take place at The North Carolina Arboretum Education Center.

Support for the Growing Color Symposium is provided in part by:  North Carolina Biotechnology Center, Hilton Asheville Biltmore Park and The Laurel of Asheville.


Wednesday, March 11, 2020

Pre-Symposium Workshop – SOLD OUT
“What Really Happens in the Indigo Vat?”
Rowland Ricketts and Catharine Ellis
10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Evening Talk and Reception
“Seed, Plant, Resist”
A Talk by Rowland Ricketts
6 to 8:30 p.m.

Thursday, March 12, 2020

Growing Color Symposium
8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
$115 Arboretum Member | $125 Non-member | $90 Student*
Registration includes lunch, snacks.

Online registration is closed. 

  • Click here to view the full program.



For more information on Growing Color 2020, please contact Rebecca Caldwell,  coordinator. Call 828.665.2492 or email


Integrated Pest Management Symposium

Thank you for attending our 2019 Symposium! Please check back for dates and information on next year’s event. For more information, please contact June Jolley at or call 828-665-2492.

Support for the IPM Symposium is provided in part by:  Hilton Asheville Biltmore Park and Bartlett Tree Experts.