Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Johns Creek, GA Timeless Art – Fresh Flowers

This spring, celebrate timeless art and fresh flowers with an exhibit showcasing the talents of regional floral artists, whose designs interpret works of art on loan from galleries in metro Atlanta. The inaugural Art in Bloom Festival presented by the Johns Creek Arts Center starts April 29 with a Preview Gala and opens to the public April 30-May 2.

Gala - $75.00.
Exhibit - $12 Adult, $8 Group (10 or more tickets), $5 Students, Children 12 and under free.

Sat., April 30 enjoy a free family day of kids’ activities, crafts, featuring a Home Depot flower box build project. Browse the Art in Bloom Shop of local vendors specializing in fine, homemade arts and crafts. Additional events include special lectures and workshops.

Workshop Info:

Sponsorships still available.

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Southern Living™ Plant Collection Debuts Plant Variety Videos

Editor Note:  With hints of spring in the air, our thoughts are turning back to enjoying the warmer weather and getting ready to plant.  These videos are great!

(BUSINESS WIRE)--Just in time for spring garden planning, Plant Development Services, Inc. and Southern Living® are excited to announce the launch of new videos showcasing plant varieties in the Southern Living™ Plant Collection, according to Kip McConnell, director of Plant Development Services, Inc.

The videos are live now at, and on the Southern Living Plant Collection Facebook page and You Tube Channel.

“This is an extensive video gallery designed to help home gardeners pick the perfect plants for their landscape,” says McConnell. The video shorts depict Collection varieties planted in natural habitats so gardeners can see the plants as they look growing. They feature plant attributes and uses in the garden, as well as growth and bloom habits.

“Considering the richness of content, these videos are a great source of information on these popular plant varieties,” said McConnell. The plant variety videos are also available to retail garden centers to display in store and on their websites.

The eighteen videos making their debut include these plant varieties from the Southern Living Plant Collection:

Little Black Magic™ Dwarf Elephant Ear
Jubilation™ Gardenia
Emerald Snow® Loropetalum
Purple Diamond® Compact Loropetalum
Purple Pixie® Weeping Loropetalum
Spring Sonata™ Indian Hawthorne
Rosalinda® Indian Hawthorne
Mountain Snow™ Pieris
Blush Pink™ Nandina
Flirt™ Nandina
Obsession™ Nandina
Yewtopia™ Plum Yew
3 Cleyeras: Bigfoot™, Bronze Beauty™ and LeAnn™
2 Hollies: Oakland™ and Robin™
Early Bird™ Crapemyrtle
Delta Jazz™ Crapemyrtle
Queen Mum™ Agapanthus
Marc Anthony® Variegated and Cleopatra™ Liriopes

The Southern Living Plant Collection, first introduced in Spring 2008, provides gardeners with innovative new plants designed to solve specific landscape challenges and to excel in Southern gardens. Each plant in the collection is the result of years of plant evaluations, plant trials and research.

Spring 2011 new introductions include a variety of new shrubs, heat tolerant rhododendrons and early-blooming crapemyrtles. The Collection is available at garden centers across the South.

For more information, to request sample plants, and to watch the new videos, please visit

A leader in horticultural innovation, Plant Development Services was founded in 1996 by Greg Smith after he recognized a need for an industry resource that could manage new plant introductions. Of particular interest to PDSI are plants with unique performance attributes that can be patented, branded and successfully introduced to the consumer market. Plant Development Services owns and/or licenses more than 100 patented plant properties, including the number one azalea brand in the world, Encore® Azalea. Growers interested in the program and plant breeders with potential new cultivars should contact Plant Development Services on the web at

Southern Living® is a premier lifestyle and entertaining magazine of the South and the 6th largest consumer magazine in the U.S. (based on readership). It reaches nearly 16 million readers and enjoys a circulation of 2.8 million. Published 12 times a year, Southern Living celebrates the heart of Southern life.

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Thursday, February 17, 2011

Forestry's Economic Value Recognized as Georgia Celebrates Arbor Day

Governor Nathan Deal has proclaimed Friday, February 18 Georgia Arbor Day, and the Georgia Forestry Commission is using the occasion to highlight the new bottom line created by healthy forests.

A study just released by The University of Georgia shows Georgia's forestlands provide essential ecosystem services to the state worth an estimated $37 billion annually. This is the first time these indirect benefits of Georgia's private forests have been estimated, and they are in addition to the annual value of timber, forest products and recreation.

"Georgia forests are known economic workhorses for our state," said Robert Farris, Georgia Forestry Commission Director. "Our forests contribute $27.2 billion to the state economy and provide more than 118,000 jobs. For the first time, this landmark study puts a number to the clean air, clean water, soil filtration and wildlife habitat services Georgia forests have been providing for centuries. This information is critical to the sustainability of our remarkable forest resource."

The first Arbor Day was celebrated in 1871 in Nebraska as a special day for planting trees and has grown to thousands of celebrations in communities across our nation each year. In celebration of Georgia Arbor Day, tree plantings and special events are being held across the state. "Edu-tainer" Tim Womick, a modern day Johnny Appleseed, is bringing his Trail of Trees performance to several locations, sharing information about tree benefits in a fun and engaging style. In Savannah, a special tree planting will take place at historic Forsyth Park at 9 a.m. in memory of urban forestry founder, Mary Helen Ray, who died in October. For information about the many benefits of trees and services of the Georgia Forestry Commission, visit For complete details about the recently released UGA study on forestry ecosystem services, visit

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Downtown Canton Farmers Market Seeks Farmers and Artisans

The Downtown Canton Farmers Market promotes local farmers and local artisans. All produce is Georgia grown and most is organic. All of our artists hand make their items. We started the market in 2009 and it has been a huge success. The market is located in Cannon Park by the gazebo and the hours of operation are 8:00am – 12:00pm.We will have the market every Saturday through October, rain or shine.

The Grand Opening Day, May 14th will feature live music to kick off the event. This year we will have cooking demonstrations and more kid’s activities. We urge you all to come check out the freshest and most beautiful produce. Some of our vendors may give out samples. We promote buy local, shop local. We support our downtown community and downtown merchants. We also promote lots of fun! Hope to see you there.

We are currently seeking vendors for our 2011 season. Please contact me for application and information.
151 Elizabeth Street | Canton, GA 30114 + Ginger Garrard | 770-704-1548 |

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Students Create Walking Trail That Teaches Visitors About Importance of Creek

Soon residents will be able to learn about the area’s native plants while enjoying nature along the newly created Creekside Native Woodland Plant Walking Trail behind Cleveland Elementary School in Fayette County.

The school’s enrichment students from Laura Brown’s class are creating the trail that is also an entry in the Disney Planet Challenge, an environmental competition for elementary and middle school students throughout the United States. The program inspires students to be good stewards of the environment and empowers them to make a difference in their school, at home, and in their local communities, all while teaching the about science, conservation, and positive ways to impact the planet.

Students have done a ton of research on the creek that runs behind the school, learning that it impacts the quality of downstream waters, and ultimately the Flint and Chattahoochee Rivers. They have also learned about what plants are important to preventing erosion along the creek’s banks, and which ones need to go.

The class has been working diligently creating the trail, installing missing native plants and labeling some of the trees and vegetation. Visitors will enjoy the outdoor activity cards with suggestions of things to do along the trail as well as facts about the creek and the native plants growing along it.

Brown hopes she and her students will have the trail completed by mid February since that is the deadline for submitting the project for the Disney competition. Thousands of dollars in cash and prizes are being awarded to winning schools.

“I am very proud of my students because we only meet once a week and entered the competition late. We hope to win money for our school, but if not, I am still proud of them,” says Brown.

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Sunday, February 13, 2011

City of Newnan Celebrates Arbor Day

In celebration of Arbor Day a tree planting ceremony will be held at the Male Academy Museum on western end of Temple Park at 11:00 a.m. on Friday morning, February 18, 2011. The City of Newnan will also be receiving its Tree City USA designation award, for the 21st consecutive year, issued by the National Arbor Day Foundation. A representative from the Georgia Forestry Commission will present the award. This year a white dogwood will be planted at the site.

To qualify as a Tree City USA community, a town or city must meet four standards established by The Arbor Day Foundation in cooperation with the USDA Forest Service and the National Association of State Foresters. These standards were established to ensure that every qualifying community would have a viable tree management plan and program. It is important to note that they were also designed so that no community would be excluded because of size..

1. A Tree Board or Department
2. A Tree Care Ordinance
3. A Community Forestry Program With an Annual Budget of at Least $2 Per Capita
4. An Arbor Day Observance and Proclamation

In addition to the Arbor Day ceremony every year, the City's Beautification Department, the Newnan Tree Commission, and Mayor Keith Brady will soon visit each of the City's six local elementary schools to meet with each of the schools' kindergarten classes to emphasize the value of trees. This is the 10th year the program has been in existence. This year due to the generally colder weather in February the plantings will be scheduled for the elementary schools in late March, instead of on Arbor Day.

"Arbor Day and the Kindergarten Tree Planting Program hopefully bring the beauty and significance of trees to the public's attention. General public education and learning at such a young age about trees is beneficial to us all., The tree planting ceremonies held in various City parks and at the local elementary schools are events that we look forward to each year. The kids are quite enthusiastic, and it's a lot of fun," said Mike Furbush, the City's Landscape Architect and Arborist.

Arbor Day is celebrated in Georgia on the third Friday of February.

Thursday, February 03, 2011

Pruning class set at UGA garden in Griffin

EVENT DATE: Feb. 25, 2011 9:00 AM - 3:00 PM

Learn to prune fruit trees and ornamentals at an upcoming course offered on the University of Georgia campus in Griffin, Ga. The course will be offered Feb. 25 and March 4.

In addition to proper pruning techniques, participants will learn what equipment to use, when to prune certain plants and techniques for creating a professional looking landscape. Participants will also learn pest prevention through pruning.

Taught by Bob Westerfield, a consumer horticulturist with the UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, the class will consist of both indoor lectures and outside hands-on demonstrations.

The one-day class will be held from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. either day at the UGA Research and Education Garden on Ellis Road in Griffin, Ga. The cost of the course is $39 and includes lunch and break refreshments. Pre-registration is required by calling (770) 233-5598.

By Sharon Dowdy
University of Georgia

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