July 2015

Lockerly Arboretum
July Newsletter

Koi Pond dedicated to Jim Garner's memory
Marker placed at the ponds in front of Rose Hill in Jim Garner's memory

The ponds in the front lawn of Rose Hill, and two newly added benches, were dedicated in Jim Garner's memory by the Lockerly Trustees. Jim was passionate about the gardens at Lockerly and the historic significance of Rose Hill. He especially enjoyed checking on the koi fish in the front lawn pond and feeding them.

During Jim's tenure as Lockerly's Executive Director, which spanned July 2008-July 2014, the gardens saw vast improvements in their design and plantings. Jim shared his interests in plants and trees with garden clubs, volunteers, school groups, and visitors who walked through the Arboretum. 

 Jim's wife,
Susan Hitchcock, spoke about his love for Lockerly  and Rose Hill.

Under his leadership, Rose Hill was nominated for placement on the 
Georgia Register of Historic Places and the National Register of Historic Places. The mansion was placed on the state's list in April, and we are waiting for national designation.


Rodger Flotta, President of the Lockerly Board of Trustees, shared stories about Jim's goal to make Lockerly a place that everyone could enjoy, whether they were here to tour Rose Hill or walk through the gardens. Jim's wife, Susan Hitchcock, said that Jim loved the Arboretum, Rose Hill, and the people who were part of Lockerly.

The next time you are in the gardens be sure to stop and enjoy watching the fish. The water plants began blooming recently, and the setting is very relaxing. 


Campers explored, learned, hiked, and splashed
Lockerly Summer Camps, all photos by Jess Burke

June is a busy month for our Education Department staff. Greg Eilers, along with GSCU student staffers, Brian Mainor and Jess Burke, led two camp sessions at the Worley Outdoor Education Center in Putnam County, and a half-day camp sessionin the Arboretum.

Campers spent time hiking, identifying all kinds of wildlife, and, when it was hot, splashing in the creek at the Worley Center.
There's an artist in everyone!
Last month artist Christi Conner Tate taught an enthusiastic group of adults and children how to paint both metal buckets and terracotta pots to use as garden containers. The containers are painted in stages because each layer of paint requires some drying time.

One goal of the workshop was to teach participants something they can do again at home. Some of our garden volunteers left with all kinds of ideas about future projects they'd like to do at home on their own.
Some workshop participants were keenly interested in painting rain barrels. If you are interested in doing that, or have suggestions on other workshops and classes you'd enjoy, email katherinecummings@lockerly.org or call 478.452.2112.

If you want to lead a class that would be great! Don't be shy about sharing your skills with people who want to learn.

100 plants and counting!
Linda Jorgenson (left) and
Suzi Troxell (right)

Under Trustee Shawn Davis' leadership, we have taken on a plant identification, tagging, and data collection project for the Arboretum. We'll be adding plant labels in the fall, if not sooner, so that visitors know more about the plantings here. Long-range plans include mapping them and putting the collection data base on our web site.

Two members of Team Troxell, Linda Jorgenson and Susie Troxell, tagged our 100th plant in the garden last week. Lockerly's Executive Director offered lunch to the team that tagged the 100th plant, so Team Troxell will have a chance to celebrate together over lunch.

Volunteer of the Month
We are pleased to bring back our Volunteer of the Month recognition after requests from several Lockerly supporters.

Our Volunteer of the Month is GeGee Guy, who helped make sure everything ran smoothly during the koi pond dedication and reception for Jim Garner.

GeGee works in the business office at GCSU. She earned her degree there, and was a classmate of Greg Eilers, our Education Director.

She is a student of historic buildings, and wrote a thesis on the transition form Federal style architecture to Greek Revival in Milledgeville. GeGee points to the convergence of Westward Expansion and emerging 19th century influences as contributors to Milledgeville's unique architectural elements. She is especially interested in heirloom varieties of flowers, vegetables, and and native plants.

GeGee believes that Rose Hill and Lockerly offer lots of opportunities for learning about plants, trees, eco-systems,history, and architecture. As a landmark between Milledgeville's downtown and the Scottsboro-Midway area, she hopes that Lockerly will attract more visitors to the area, which benefits local businesses. 
Ocmulgee Audubon Society field trip explored what's flying, and growing, in the gardens 
Bluebird in the Lockerly gardens,
photo by Ocmulgee Audubon Society
Members of the Ocmulgee Audubon Society and Lockerly supporters spent a few hours in the Arboretum watching birds, butterflies, and the habitats that attract them on June 20th.

The eBird list they compiled included 36 species, ranging from yellow-billed cuckoos to hummingbirds,   

Four volunteers, Belinda Peebles, Lurline West, David Evans, and Joe Mangum volunteered to help answer questions and walk the gardens while people were birding or finding their way to the art workshop. We are most appreciative of their time.

For more information on Ocmulgee Audubon Society, contact their President, Andre Coquerel, at  andre.coquerel@gmail.com 
July Garden Tips
Lockerly Staff

July can bring torrents of rain for days on end or scorching dry heat. There are things you can do to make sure you have fresh vegetables from your garden, color in the yard, and birds visiting your feeders.

  • Summer vegetables including squash and cucumbers can still be planted if they are watered sufficiently. If you want pumpkins for fall and Halloween, get seeds in the ground now.
  • Make sure weak branches and limbs are pruned in case we experience hurricanes or tropical storms this summer. Stake out taller plants and vegetables that may be damaged during strong summer storms. 


  • Limbs and yard debris piles are very inviting to birds. Choose a quiet area in your yard, placing the smaller limbs and debris on the bottom of the pile. 
  •  Allow your grass to grow a little taller than normal between cuttings. This shades the roots and also attracts birds to your yard.
Summer Schedule update
Based on current, and previous year visitor numbers, we have decided to close on Saturdays in July. We had already planned to be closed on July 4th. Wherever you spend your weekends, be sure to stay hydrated and protect yourself from the sun.
The search continues
We are extending our search for a Horticulture Director beyond June. The successful candidate might accurately be described as a "plant geek." He/She should have experience leading volunteers, developing grounds maintenance plans, supervising a grounds crew, and working with the public. If you know someone who would be a good addition to our team at Lockerly, please share the Horticulture Director Job Announcement with them. 

Our volunteers and college student grounds-crew staff have been a tremendous help, especially during the incredible heat we've experienced. The Trustees and I are most appreciative.

We appreciate our sponsors