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.
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.
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:
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