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Healing the earth, one yard at a time

October 2017 Newsletter

In this edition:

Saving an Old Growth Forest - October 9
Annual Meeting for the Chapter - November 4
Holiday Potluck - December 11


Plant Form & Function, Part 2 - October 14
Landscape Design - November 11


Put Your Garden on the Map!
Bee City USA Update




Photo above is Symphyotrichum georgianum (Georgia aster).


Monday, October 9
63 E. Main St.
FREE and open to the public

In fall 2014, Fernbank Museum of Natural History in Atlanta embarked on an ambitious task of restoring a 65 acre old-growth forest. The forest had become host to 50 different non-native, invasive plant species that were choking out native plants and decreasing forest biodiversity. Since that time over 30 acres have been at least partially restored. This presentation will cover means, methods, successes and challenges of this restoration project and include advice on how you can tackle these ever-present invasives in your local forest or home landscape. Target species include English ivy, Chinese wisteria, thorny olive, leatherleaf mahonia, and various species of monkey grass.

Eli Dickerson is the Ecologist and chief "tree hugger" at Fernbank Museum of Natural History where he manages the 65 acre, old-growth Fernbank Forest.  Eli has a B.S. in Biology from Winthrop University and an MBA in nonprofit management from Georgia State University.

Saturday, November 4
10:00am - 2:00pm
Chattanooga Aububon Acres
FREE for all Wild Ones Members

On Saturday, November 4th the Tennessee Valley Chapter of Wild Ones membership will gather at Chattanooga Audubon Acres to review 2017 and prepare for another great year in 2018.

This is our one best opportunity to join together and collectively provide input into the future of our chapter. The meeting will include lunch from Panera Bread and will end with another fun native plant seed and plant swap.

Morning beverages and a box lunch will be provided.  This event, including lunch, is FREE for all active members.

Monday, December 11
6:00 pm
63 E. Main St., Chattanooga TN
FREE for all Wild Ones Members

More info will be coming soon, but in the meantime, SAVE THE DATE!  This is a fun time to gather with Wild Ones friends for a great holiday potluck dinner.


Help Us Plan Our Programs & Events

The Program Co mmittee will meet at 5:00 pm, Thursday, October 12, at Conga Restaurant,  26 E Main St, Chattanooga, TN.  All interested members are invited to participate in planning next year's programs and hikes.  For more information, contact Lyn Rutherford  or Bill Moll .   No experience is necessary.  

The Wild Ones Information Table Needs You

We still need a few more people to help staff the Wild Ones Information Table at the upcoming Reflection Riding Native Plant Sale on October 5-7.  This is a great, informal way to help out our chapter.  No experience is necessary.   Check out these opportunities by clicking below:

Certificate in Native Plants Classes

The Certificate in Native Plants program is designed to expand students' knowledge of botany, ecology, conservation, and uses of native flora in the southeastern United States. Students will get both classroom education and hands-on application to increase knowledge and skills that can be applied at home, in the community, and at work. The course setting will provide a common ground for native plant enthusiasts to meet and connect with others who share their interests. 

The CNP is designed to benefit both home gardeners and landscaping professionals alike.  You do NOT need to be working toward the Certificate in order to register for classes.

If you are interested in working toward YOUR Certificate, please note that the Plant Form & Function classes are CORE classes required for the Certificate.  Now is a good time to get those classes in!

Most CNP classes are limited to 25 participants.  They fill up quickly, so register now to ensure your place.  

Click the buttons below for program details and registration.

Plant Form & Function - Part 2
Instructors: Richard Clements & Mary Priestley
Saturday, October 14, 2017
9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m 
Reflection Riding Arboretum & Nature Center
CORE Class (6 credits)

Landscape Design
Instructor: Daniel Talley
Saturday, November 11, 2017
9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m 
Reflection Riding Arboretum & Nature Center
ELECTIVE Class (4 credits)


Fall Plant Sales Continue
Autumn is a great time to plant!

Overhill Gardens  invites customers to visit during the month of October and receive 20% off all plant selections.  The nursery will be open during regular hours, Monday - Saturday from 8am-4pm.  The staff is available to help you with your selections.  This is a great opportunity to see the new design of Overhill Gardens; over 50,000 plants have been moved, and all plants are now on one side of the road in a redesigned, lush layout lush filled with new ideas for your garden.

October 4
Bees on a Bicycle Open House
The official launch of Bees on a Bicycle will be celebrated at 4:45pm with an open house for the public as well as a ribbon cutting in conjunction with the Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce. Onsite parking is available, as well as street parking and overflow parking at Cornerstone Church a block away at 19th and Long Streets.  

October 5-7 
Reflection Riding Fall Native Plant Sale
Visit Reflection Riding Arboretum & Nature Center for the 31st annual Fall Native Plant Sale to purchase the region's best selection of trees, shrubs, and perennials. During the sale, staff and volunteers will be on hand to answer questions. There's a full schedule of interesting and FREE talks and workshops. Click HERE for the schedule and to download a plant list.

October 21-22 
Birmingham Botanical Gardens Fall Plant Sale
The annual plant sale at the Birmingham [AL] Botanical Gardens is another great opportunity to pick up native plants and trees.  Click HERE for info.


Put Your Garden on the Map!

The Chattanooga Area Pollinator Partnership (CHAPP) is  working to put together a broad partnership of public and private organizations and individuals concerned about the preservation and protection of pollinators in the greater Chattanooga area.

We would like to learn more about high quality pollinator habitat in our area and hope to measure efforts to increase habitat through a simple mapping program. 

Other organizations around the country, including other Wild Ones chapters are engaged in similar habitat restoration projects.  As these efforts coalesce, we plan to add our habitat map to larger regional and national maps.

If you would like to add your garden to this map,  click here to fill out a simple form.   If you need help answering the question regarding what your garden provides, please review this page about the basics.

If you would like to remain anonymous, you may certainly do so.  Simply provide a street name and zip code so we can place a general pin.  

Bee City USA Update

Lookout Mountain, TN and Lookout Mountain, GA are now officially Bee Cities USA!   Candace Chasen (District III Tennessee Federation of Garden Clubs Director) and Ann Brown (Wild Ones Member), along with other supporters proposed the Bee City USA model to the Lookout Mountain City Councils, and the proposals were accepted!

The Bee City USA program endorses a set of commitments, defined in a resolution, for creating  sustainable habitats for pollinators , which are vital to feeding the planet.  

As reported in our last newsletter, the twelve garden clubs in TFGC District III will each establish native plant Pollinator Gardens and Monarch Waystations.  
 All the plant material will be pesticide free and no pesticides will be used in or around the gardens.  

Fall Landscapes in Progress Report

On September 30th, a great group of Wild Ones visited the gardens of Emily & Paul Campbell and Bob & Deb Hulse.  As always, it was a terrific opportunity for Wild Ones members to learn from each other ... and of course, to see native plant gardens as they develop.  In the next newsletter, we'll share some "LIPs Tips" about native plant gardening in the Tennessee Valley.  Thanks to the Campbells and Hulses for sharing their gardens with us!


This Winter's Hot Fashion: 
Parkas Stuffed With Vermont Weeds
New England farmers despise milkweed, but as its fibers become a 'plant-based' alternative used in winter clothing, they're trying to warm up to it.  Read this article from the Wall Street Journal to learn about another reason to love milkweed!

Let's Start a Garden Revolution!
"A new book came out last year by Larry Weaner and Thomas Christopher. It is titled: Garden Revolution: How our landscapes can be a source of environmental change... Two of Larry's key points are that 1) nothing is static in nature and 2) traditional design and maintenance efforts are constantly working against this. We can enjoy our gardens more if we anticipate and embrace nature's changes. Change introduces a sense of discovery through the element of time: a new composition of plant arrangement or perhaps even a new plant popping up."  

Wildlife Photographer of the Year
The Natural History Museum in London has kindly released the 13 finalist images for the  2017 Wildlife Photographer of the Year contest , in advance of the October announcement of the competition's winners. Now in its 53rd year, this year's competition received almost 50,000 entries from 92 different countries. Imagine how difficult it would be to choose the winner from among these photos!  Take a look!

We often just glance from a distance at these fall beauties, 
but up close, they are even more spectacular.
Enjoy these beautiful photos from our own Mike O'Brien.





Black Swallowtail Caterpillar on Fennel


Become a Wild Ones Member!
Join the Tennessee Valley Chapter

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Wild Ones: Native Plants. Natural Landscapes is a national non-profit organization with over 50 chapters in 13 states that promotes environmentally sound landscaping practices to preserve biodiversity through the preservation, restoration and establishment of native plant communities. Please read more information about Wild Ones at
The Tennessee Valley Chapter presents guest speakers, field trips and other special events throughout the year, as well as an annual native plant and natural landscaping symposium in early spring. 
To contact our chapter, email us at