Sunday, August 09, 2009

Garden of Novelist Ferrol Sams and Sams Lake Featured in September Backyard Wildlife Sanctuary Tour

Six Distinctive Gardens on Display Southeast of Metro Atlanta

Six gardens in Fayetteville and Peachtree City will demonstrate how people can preserve the region’s wildlife and, more broadly, its biodiversity by cultivating native plants and other essentials for wildlife survival at this year’s Atlanta Audubon Society Backyard Wildlife Sanctuary Tour.

The tour will take place Saturday, September 12 from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Advance tickets are now on sale for $12 by calling Atlanta Audubon Society at 678/973-2437. Tickets are also available on the day of the tour for $15 at the first and last sites. Children 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by an adult.

This year’s tour includes six exciting properties:

#1 214 Smokerise Trace, Peachtree City, GA 30269
This three-acre property is owned by a Georgia Certified Landscape Professional and Georgia Master Gardener. The site includes a one-acre hardwood forest, and a 10-acre adjacent forest harbors many species of birds, mammals, and reptiles. Over 125 bird species have been seen on this property.

#2 233 Smokerise Trace, Peachtree City, GA 30269
This acre and a half of professionally maintained gardens has beautifully constructed waterfalls, ponds and meandering creeks.

#3 Two Doves Farm, 380 Ebenezer Church Road, Fayetteville, GA 30215
A certified organic farm of 15 acres. Organic plants, vegetables and botanicals produced at the farm are on sale. Go to for more information.

#4 Sams Lake Bird Sanctuary, Old Senoia Road, Fayetteville, GA 30215
A 56-acre nature preserve donated by the Sams family to replace lost wetlands when the fifth runway at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport was built. The site is now owned and managed by Southern Conservation Trust. The lake area hosts beaver, wild turkeys, egrets, heron, hawks, deer and muskrat and many species of birds. A half-acre mulched trail and three observation decks provide great wildlife viewing. Go to for more information.

#5 685 Glynn Street South (GA Hwy 85) Fayetteville, GA 30214
Part of Turnipseed Nursery and Gardens, this garden has been featured on HGTV's “A Gardener's Diary.”

#6 Garden of Drs. Ferrol and Helen Sams, 355 Beauregard Blvd., Fayetteville, GA 30214
A mature natural woodland garden of more than 30 acres with many native azaleas and wildflowers such as trilliums. The garden has been featured on HGTV’s “A Gardener’s Diary.”

These sites have all been certified by Atlanta Audubon Society as wildlife sanctuaries. They show how homeowners and gardeners can cultivate their own yards to preserve native plants and habitat for wildlife. The four essential components of a wildlife sanctuary are:

Shelter: Active nesting areas or shelters that attract and protect birds and other wildlife.
Food: Feeders and plantings that offer seeds, flowers, and berries to wildlife.
Water: Birdbaths, water gardens, or natural features with flowing water.
Nesting Sites: Bird boxes, natural cavities, or wood piles and vine tangles.

For more information on the Wildlife Sanctuary Program, go to

For a map of the tour and directions to the sites, go to

The Sanctuary Tour and Program are designed to encourage residential homeowners and homeowners' associations, business park owners/managers, and golf course owners/managers to become involved in the preservation of native plants and habitat for wildlife.
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