This letter was sent to the South Atlantic Region Key Notes
The beginning of a new year is a time for reflecting on the accomplishments of the past year and a time to plan and focus on new ideas and projects for 2017. As you spend winter days with your gardening books and seed catalogs, remember to select seeds for native plant pollinator gardens and monarch waystations.
The Garden Club of Kentucky has seen a big increase in the number of certified gardens that ensure a brighter future for pollinators in our state. Kentucky has increased the number of Certified Monarch Waystations from 36 in 2013 to 404 through October 2016. Thanks to State Park Chairman, Joanna Kirby, we now have Monarch Waystations in 15 Kentucky State Parks. Linda Porter, Pollinator and Butterfly Chairman reported that public and private agencies across the state have joined forces to develop a Monarch Conservation Plan for Kentucky.
A park in Henderson, Kentucky has been offering to the public the opportunity to catch and tag Monarch butterflies to aid in tracking their migration paths to Mexico for the winter. Before being released, a small round sticker with identifying information is placed on the underside of the Monarch’s back wing.
Our garden club members have a huge impact in their communities as they beautify and improve them with the many volunteer hours spent each year. They continue to maintain gardens and waystations at Regional Airports, Arboretums, Nursing homes, Assisted living homes, Historical Society, National and State Parks, City welcome signs, and our State Headquarters. Garden Club for Noble Park received a $5,000 watershed grant to sponsor a rain garden workshop and to develop a rain garden to remedy a major water problem in the Parks Children’s Memorial.
While Paving the Pathway to the Future, we are making progress with our youth clubs. Youth Chairman, Ann Kowalkoski, and her committee report that all five districts have participated in youth activities including projects at a public library, work day at a park with pollinators, hands on activities, and applying for Youth Awards.
Many flower shows have been held this year. One show was held in conjunction with a district meeting. Members placed entries in shows at fairs and city celebrations. Programs included creative designs and how to prepare for a flower show. The Garden Club of Kentucky and Middlesboro Garden Club will host Flower Show Course IV on March 16 17, 2017 in Middlesboro, Kentucky. Our Symposium, sponsored by Kentucky Council of Nationally accredited Flower Show Judges of GCKY, will be held June 14 15, 2017 at Carter Caves State Park, Olive Hill, Kentucky.
Corbin Garden Club and Lady Slippers Garden Club in Mountain Laurel District, each installed and dedicated a Blue Star Memorial Marker for Veterans Day. What a beautiful way to honor our servicemen and women with a memorial that will beautify and preserve the land for which they fought.
I’m looking forward to seeing each of you at South Atlantic Region Convention in White Sulphur Springs, WV, on March 26-28, 2017.
Edith S. Nelson, GCKY President