Category Archives: Native Plant Society


These past two weeks have been a whirlwind of Native Plant Society happenings.

Two weeks ago, a group of us went to Gainesville to the Kinsey Family Farm to purchase plants.  We brought home a truckload and an SUV load of native trees and shrubs to plant along the nature trail at Buffalo Creek.

Last week we had the second of our big workdays, getting the sites ready for planting.  On Tues. a group of about 20 planted 300 Trillium grandiflorum on a hillside.  There were so many people on that hillside, they looked like ants scurrying around at a picnic. And they got all 300 planted and watered in about an hour.  Those trilliums will be spectacular as we walk the trail in the spring.

On Thursday, I led a rescue at a new site here in Carroll County.  The new owners are planning to pulpwood the land to start a small family farm.  They have graciously allowed us to go into the woods and collect native plants that will be endangered by the pulpwooders and the cows.  I got some spice bush, Silverbells, trillium, Jack in the Pulpit, Rattlesnake orchids, Elephant’s Foot, Collinsonia, Itea, Royal fern, Lady Fern, Fragile Fern, green headed coneflowers….It is a treasure trove for those of us who love native plants.

I have spent all week potting the rescued plants from Thursday, and some rescued at two other rescue opportunities.  Many of these are going on the Buffalo Creek trail.

Next week, I’m putting displays in five libraries in Carroll, Heard and Haralson counties, giving information about the West Georgia Chapter of the Georgia Native Plant Society.  Go by the library in Bremen, Bowdon, Villa Rica, Temple, or Ephesus and check it out.  If you are interested in learning more about the importance of native plants and how to identify them, you should come to our meetings.

Last month we had Charles Seabrook, free lance writer of Georgia Wild featured in the Sat. edition of the AJC.  He did a nice job telling us all about the wonderful places to go and things to see here in Ga.  Check  Google for his list of 35 places in Georgia  everyone should see before they die.  Just type in Charles Seabrook 35 places.  You’ll find a list with lots of helpful links.  I have our list printed, and we plan to start doing all 35 things later this fall.  Some we did years ago, but now that I’m so interested in our native plants, I plan to revisit those places and see them from a different perspective.

We are having another workday on the trail on Wed. to prepare planting sites for the 100 native azaleas we’ll be planting when cooler weather gets here.  I can’t wait to see what the next spring will bring.  Hope to see lots of blooms, as most of the native trees and shrubs we bought and the azaleas all have wonderful blooms.

My life is so rich, getting to do the things I never had time for when I was working.  Wish everyone could find that special something that makes their world a brighter place.  It sure keeps me going!


Taking a Walk on the Wild Side

I had the opportunity to take two field trips with some native plant friends.  Our trip yesterday was to tour the gardens of another native plant member.  He bought the lot next to his house, and had spent several years developing it into a showplace.  He’s getting ready to move back to Oklahoma, and some lucky person is going to buy a treasure.

About 3 years ago, he put in a retention pond with a recirculating pump.  He dug and lined three ‘streams’ through his yard.  He added gravel and large rocks along the streambeds, then started putting in shade loving plants.  It was the most amazing ‘manmade’ stream and pond I’ve ever seen.

DSC_1726 DSC_1762You can barely see the water flowing down the hill with all the huge ferns and other shade loving plants.


Greg lugged in every large stone, most of the moss covered logs, and tons of soil, slate chips, and mulch.  It has been a labor of love for 15 years.  While mostly native, he has put in some nonnatives such as hosta.  The ferns are so lush and big, it’s hard to believe they are real.  However, much of the tremendous growth is a result of weekly watering from the well he had dug just for watering his native gardens.

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Our second field trip was to a sanctuary in West Point to see the Shoal Lilies in bloom.  These are a species of Carolina Spider lilies, one of the most spectacular native wildflowers.  They have been in bloom for a couple of weeks and will continue to bloom for a short while.  Then the seeds will ripen by late June.  The owner invited  us to come back in June and collect some seeds for our restoration project at Buffalo Creek Trail.  The sight of these lilies was just breathtaking, and no pictures could ever do them justice.

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Hopefully, in a few years, our own Buffalo Creek will look like this!



Just when I thought it was going to cool off so I could get back into the yard full time, it becomes an inferno again.  But there is a promise of rain this weekend.  I’m gonna take them at their word and use my rain barrel water to water my newly planted stuff.  Hope it rains to refill them.

This morning I planted some of my fall garden.  First things first, I always say, so the rutabagas went in right away.  Collards will follow, with lettuce in a couple of weeks. I put in some tomatoes I had rooted from my old plants, and they are taking off.  Hope to have time to harvest a second crop before the first frost.

Took me two days and part of this morning to get all the rescued plants in pots.  I have about 150 plants to grow out for the native plant society sales.  Fly poison, tiarella, rattlesnake plantain, Jack in the Pulpit, native azaleas, native magnolias, and lots of others.  We’ll be having a plant sale at our September workshop, so plan to join us.  Ernest Koone, who owns a  native plant nursery in Lagrange will be speaking about native plants to use in the home landscape.  Also learn how to make a fairy house, a bit of whimsy for your garden.

And on a sad note, someone ran over our black racer snake.  He will be missed, but his passing will be celebrated by the chipmunks who will now proceed to burrow underneath my entire yard.


Saving the environment…..

I did my part yesterday in helping to save the environment.  I spent 4 hours in the woods with 5 wonderful people, digging native plants to save them from the bulldozer.  This is one of my passions.  I collected ferns, native magnolias, tiarella, rattlesnake plantain, climbing hydrangea, fly poison, and Jack in the Pulpit.  A few of these will find their way into my garden.  Others will be planted on the Buffalo Creek Trail.  And some will be sold at the Native Plant Society workshop on Sept. 21.  We may not be able to stop the progress (a new reservoir), but we’ll be doing our small part in minimizing the damage to our native plants.

It took almost 2 hours to pot up all those 200+ plants, but that’s a good way to spend my time.  It’s been over a month since our last rescue, and I was beginning to have withdrawal symptoms.  I’m planning to go on at least two more in Sept., so if you have a passion for native plants, why don’t you join me?


A little known jewel….

Many folks don’t know anything about the West Georgia Chapter of the Native Plant Society, but those of us who are devoted to the mission of protecting our native plants are working to change that.  We installed a display at the Neva Lomason Library yesterday, explaining exactly what we do.

We are very involved in education of the importance of our native plants to our well being.  From food for people and wildlife, to habitat for wildlife, to medicinal uses, our native plants are incredibly important to our quality of life.

Our second mission is to rescue native plants that might otherwise be destroyed by bulldozers or flooding for reservoirs.  We go on rescue from Sept. through May, and dig a tremendous number of beautiful natives.  Some of these we plant on public lands, such as walking trails and parks.  Some we put in our own yards to propagate for new plants.  Others we sell at our meetings to allow more people to enjoy these beautiful plants.

Thirdly, we work to restore habitats in areas that have been devastated by storms, erosion, or poor land use.  An example of this is the Buffalo Creek Nature Trail at the ag center.  When finished, this trail will be several miles long, with examples of almost every habitat found in Georgia, except for the ocean  .  We have cleared a portion of the trail, labeled trees with educational signs, and planted dozens of rescued plants along the trail.  We will be establishing a native azalea trail over the next year or so.

We hope that you will join us at a meeting or for one of our workshops.  You just might find your new passion!


Here are some pics of plants that I have rescued and planted in my own yard.  Some are taken from the native plant web site, as mine are still too small to bloom, but this is what I’m shooting for over the long haul.

Green And Gold  Feb. 19, 2013 Indian Pink March 11, 2013  Rue Anemone Native Clematis gardens 197 Snakeroot e Erythronium_umbilicatum_03-03-04_01 Bloodroot Yellow Star Grass Trillium_catesbaei_04-21-04 DSC_0618 Cercis_canadensis_03-29-06 (1) Hydrangea_arborescens_07-05-05_02 Cephalanthus_occidentalis_07-29-09_01 Hibiscus_coccineus_07-21-05_01 Chionanthus_virginicus_04-27-05 Vaccinium_arboreum_05-14-11_01 Illicium_floridanum_04-03-13_02Osmunda_cinnamomea_04-22-03 Styrax_americanus_04-27-05_02