Out and About at the Freedom Park Bird and Butterfly Garden

Carol Vanderschaaf at the Freedom Park Bird and Butterfly Garden.

Freedom Park Bird and Butterfly Garden

In 2005, Carol Vanderschaaf started the Freedom Park Bird and Butterfly Garden with Phil Edwards and the Dekalb Master Gardener Association along with Catherine Kuchar of the Audubon Society.  Together, they planted over 40 different species of native plants and shrubs.

Over the following years, the garden has not only added plants, but also been the site of outdoor environmental classes on pollinator syndromes and environmental stewardship for students at Mary Lin School.

Ilex verticillata, Winterberry, provides excellent forage for songbirds.

This past October (2017), Beech Hollow and Scout Troop 586 scheduled a workday at the

Freedom Park Bird and Butterfly Garden. The Scouts removed invasive plants from the garden, with adult help and supervision.

While we were hard at work, the Georgia aster was in bloom, and the Heart’s a Busting was dangling berries, to entice the birds to stop by and eat.

Cub Scout Troop 586 finishing a hard day’s work at the Freedom Park Bird and Butterfly Garden.

The brilliant scarlet fruits of the Winterberry, Ilex verticillata, made a gorgeous splash of color under the oak trees. For birds, Winterberry and Heart’s a Busting fruits are the plant equivalent of a neon sign that says “Eat at Joe’s.”

Job well done, thank you, scouts!

 

 

 

 

 

Freedom Park Bird and Butterfly Garden, a short timeline:

2005

Carol Vanderschaaf started the Freedom Park Bird and Butterfly Garden with Phil Edwards and the Dekalb Master Gardener Association along with Catherine Kuchar of the Audubon Society.  They planted over 40 different species of native plants and shrubs.

2008 through 2012,

EcoAddendum engaged the students at Mary Lin School in both learning to garden, in pollinator syndromes and environmental stewardship.  The students and Carol Vanderschaaf install more plants.

2013 through 2016,

Environmental programming continued with Lauren Sandoval and Trees Atlanta.  Each year volunteers planted new native plants.

2017 and ongoing:

Beech Hollow Farms and the Freedom Park Conservancy along with volunteer groups will continue the maintenance and planting of natives at the Freedom Park Bird and Butterfly Garden.

Here is a partial list of plants that have been planted at the Freedom Park Bird and Butterfly Garden over the past several years:

Native plants for birds and/or butterflies:
Black-eyed Susan, Rudbeckia fulgida or Rudbeckia hirta
Purple Coneflower, Echinacea purpurea
Golden Fleece Goldenrod, Solidago rugosa
Virginia Creeper, Parthenocissus quinquefolia
Cardinal Flower, Lobelia cardinalis
Crossvine, Bignonia capreolata

Native plants for birds:
American Beautyberry, Callicarpa americana
Blueberry, Vaccinium spp
Yellow root, Xanthorhizza simplicissima

Native plants for butterflies:
Butterfly Weed (not Bush),  Asclepias tuberosa
Joe Pye Weed, Eutrochium fistulosum
St. John’s Wort, Hypericum frondosum
Pink Milkweed, Asclepias incarnata
Passionflower, Passiflora incarnata

 


Out and About at the CRNRA

Working in Public Spaces

For several years Beech Hollow has been working in public spaces around the Atlanta Metro Area helping out with native plant installations.  We thought we would put up a couple of posts about these native plant projects.

Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area (CRNRA):

Island Ford monument sign with deer proof planting.

BHF have been working with the staff at the Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area (CRNRA) for the past few years to plant and maintain native Georgia plants in two areas at the Island Ford Visitor’s Center.   The front entrance area has proved to be the toughest to re-vegetate, as the deer have been relentlessly munching plants down to the ground and have even pulled out whole root balls just days after we planted them!

Jeff with a fist full of invasive plants.

Despite the overabundant, graceful pests we have had deer proof successes in a very sunny area that is only irrigated by rainfall.  Plants like Rattlesnake Master (Eryngium yuccafolium), American Aloe (Manfreda virginica), and Splitbeard Bluestem (Andropogon ternarius) are quite happily flowering in the poor, often dry soils of the driveway median.

We will continue working with Park staff and volunteers to reestablish native plant populations along the edges of the entrance and near the historic Hewlett Lodge Visitor Center building in the coming year.  Come out and lend a hand, or just visit to check out our plantings, hike the numerous trails, and see the natural beauty that will make you forget you’re in a large city.

 

Just in case you are curious, here is the list of approved native plants for the CRNRA:

Shrubs:

New Jersey Tea, Ceanothus americanus

Georgia Basil, Clinopodium georgianum

Cedar Glade St Johnswort, Hypericum frondosum

Maple-leaf Viburnum, Viburnum acerifolium

Perennials:

Tall Thimbleweed, Anemone virginiana

Bird’s foot Violet,
Viola pedata

Barren Strawberry, Waldsteinia lobata

Green and Gold, Chrysogonum virginianum

Woodland Phlox, Phlox divaricata

Pussytoes, Antennaria plantaginifolia

Blue-eyed grass,
 Sisyrinchium spp

Eastern beardtongue, Penstemon laevigatus

Hoary skullcap, Scutellaria incana

Butterflyweed, Asclepias tuberosa

Rattlesnake master, Eryngium yuccifolium

Narrow leaved Mountain Mint, Pycnanthemum tennuifolium

Coreopsis, Coreopsis grandiflora

Cornel leaf Aster, Doellingeria infirma

Goldenaster, Chrysopsis mariana

Red disk Sunflower, Helianthus atrorubens

Blue Mistflower, Conoclinium coelestinuum

Georgia aster, Symphyotrichum georgianum