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Join us each month at the State Botanical Garden as we have a unique educational opportunity for our friends. Each month features a guest lecturer who will bring you updates to all things garden and plant related. Sponsored by the Friends of the State Botanical Garden of Georgia.


March - Let's Go Hiking!

You don’t have to drive to the mountains or the coast to take some great hikes if you live in the Athens area. Within an hour’s drive of Athens, and usually much closer, there are many great trails at state and county parks. Linda Chafin will tell some stories of exploring these trails, a project she started during the early days of the pandemic when we were urged to stay close to home. Now she walks these trails every year for their beauty, challenge, and botanical interest.

Linda retired from the State Botanical Garden in 2020, after serving 16 years as the Garden’s Conservation Botanist. She is the author of two books on Georgia’s flora and has been hiking and enjoying the outdoors since she was a child.

April - Gardens at Monticello

Please join Jason Young, director of horticulture and grounds at the State Botanical Garden, for a conversation about the landscape of Monticello Mountain in Charlottesville, Virginia. Before coming to the University of Georgia, he worked as the manager and curator of historic gardens at Monticello, Thomas Jefferson’s historic home. Jefferson was passionate about nature and what agricultural plants could do for our young nation. In this talk, we will discuss Jefferson’s “Ferme Orne” or Ornamental farm that he planned and developed on Monticello Mountain from the first ground-breaking in 1768 to his death in 1826. Jason will also talk about his work bringing this landscape to life as Manager and Curator of Historic Gardens at Monticello.

Jason is a faculty member in the unit of Public Service and Outreach at the University of Georgia. His work at the State Botanical Garden involves managing the 313 acres of land and cultivated gardens, as well as working with local communities to install native plant gardens throughout the state. Jason is a certified wildland burn manager, wildland firefighter and ISA (International Society of Arboriculture) certified arborist. He holds a Master’s in horticulture from Colorado State University and two bachelor’s degrees in biology and art.

May - Do You Love Cut Flowers?

Please join Lara Jackson as she shares the joy of growing flowers from her Oconee County specialty cut flower farm. Wolfsong Flowers is Lara’s woman-owned and operated home-based small business—a specialty cut flower farm and blossoming botanical art studio. For Lara, growing cut flowers and sharing the beauty of local flowers from her farm has been a deep passion and an immense labor of love. Wolfsong Flowers has served as a farm/florist for four years, offering a wide variety of flowers and greenery to florists and locals. In addition to fresh flowers, Lara grows crops for drying and crafting, she presses flowers and foliage for artwork and makes epoxy resin cast botanical jewelry. In addition, she specializes in bridal and memorial flower preservation.

Lara is a Georgia native and UGA alumnus with a B.S. and an M.S. in horticulture with a thesis focus on GPS/GIS and plant conservation. She lives in Bogart with her husband, two sons and two cats. Her resume includes working at a local Athens Horticulture Analytical Lab, part-time employee of the State Botanical Garden of Georgia, special education paraprofessional, accessions/receiving specialist at the UGA Veterinary Diagnostic Lab, and a stay-at-home mother.

June - Who Takes Care of Dooley Field and The Hedges at Sanford Stadium?

Matt Hollan has been Director of Athletic Fields and Grounds for the University of Georgia Athletic Association since 2017. He will discuss the maintenance and care of Dooley Field and The Hedges while highlighting the similarities and differences of athletic field management to gardening.

Matt grew up in eastern Iowa with a fascination for plants and a passion for sports. Focusing, at the start, on lawncare, Matt found athletic field management while at Iowa State University. He studied horticulture and began athletic field management as a student worker for the Iowa State University Athletic Department Grounds Crew. This perfect combination of plants and sports led to a year studying and conducting research at the University of Tennessee Center for Athletic Field Safety, before accepting a full-time position as assistant athletic field manager at the University of Minnesota. Two seasons later, Matt accepted the Director of Sports Turf role at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. After three seasons in LA, he relocated to the wonderful University of Georgia to lead the grounds crew in charge of UGA athletic fields and grounds, including Dooley Field at Sanford Stadium.

July - Who Keeps Track of the Plants at the State Botanical Garden of Georgia?

Please join us as Emily James presents a program on the ins and outs of plant records. She will talk about understanding botanical names, mapping, and implementing GPS points throughout the garden.

Emily has worked at the State Botanical Garden since 2014. She is the curator of Freedom Plaza and the Garden Club of Georgia, as well as manager of plant records, plant inventory, and mapping. She is passionate about gardens and about creating a great experience for visitors.

August - Monarch Butterflies!

Please join Shawna McGrath as she gives a presentation about the importance of protecting and conserving monarch butterflies, one of the most familiar of the North American butterflies. These winged beauties must be saved from extinction! This informative and interactive presentation will be full of visuals and tips she has used over the years for rearing and releasing these beautiful creatures for their migration to Mexico. Shawna says, "My passion is monarch conservation and I hope I can bring some excitement and knowledge about how we can all become good citizen scientists and help protect this amazing species."

Shawna is a retired teacher having taught for 30 years in the state of Georgia. After retirement, she started her own business, Junie B. Farms in Monroe, GA. Besides studying and protecting Monarch butterflies, she breeds Nigerian dwarf goats. She continues her love of teaching by offering farm and garden summer camps and birthday parties for children. She likes to share her love of nature, gardening, and animals with others.

Applies Towards the Following Certificates

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Click the + to expand sections to see the available dates and times below.

Or

Select Single Registration to register a single participant or choose Reserve Seats to register multiple participants

Section Title
July 2024 - Who Keeps Track of the Plants at the State Botanical Garden of Georgia?
Type
In Person
Days
F
Time
9:00AM to 10:30AM
Dates
Jul 12, 2024
Schedule and Location
Contact Hours
1.5
Location
  • State Botanical Garden of Georgia Locations
Course Fee(s)
Member Registration $10.00
Non Member Registration $12.00
Section Notes

Please join us as Emily James presents a program on the ins and outs of plant records. She will talk about understanding botanical names, mapping, and implementing GPS points throughout the garden.

Emily has worked at the State Botanical Garden since 2014. She is the curator of Freedom Plaza and the Garden Club of Georgia, as well as manager of plant records, plant inventory, and mapping. She is passionate about gardens and about creating a great experience for visitors. The reservation deadline is noon on July 5.

Or

Select Single Registration to register a single participant or choose Reserve Seats to register multiple participants

Section Title
August 2024 - Monarch Butterflies!
Type
In Person
Days
F
Time
9:00AM to 10:30AM
Dates
Aug 02, 2024
Schedule and Location
Contact Hours
1.5
Location
  • State Botanical Garden of Georgia Locations
Course Fee(s)
Member Registration $10.00
Non Member Registration $12.00
Section Notes

Please join Shawna McGrath as she gives a presentation about the importance of protecting and conserving monarch butterflies, one of the most familiar of the North American butterflies. These winged beauties must be saved from extinction! This informative and interactive presentation will be full of visuals and tips she has used over the years for rearing and releasing these beautiful creatures for their migration to Mexico. Shawna says, "My passion is monarch conservation and I hope I can bring some excitement and knowledge about how we can all become good citizen scientists and help protect this amazing species." The reservation deadline is noon on July 26.

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