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History of The Garden Club of Georgia, Inc.

First Garden Club in America

From an article by Lucy Leah Redwine in the Garden Gateways Yearbook


Amidst the fragrant atmosphere which envelopes the quaint little town of Athens, Georgia, the Ladies Garden Club was born. The history of its origins is like a bright and happy story from the pages of the past.

The University of Georgia, whose charter dates to the year 1785 was built in a wilderness where the white man's foot seldom trod. On a hillside verdant with majestic oaks and hickories and looking down upon the quiet waters of the Oconee River, the first college buildings were erected. Around these early edifices, many of which are standing today, the homes of the college professors gradually arose. Gradually, too, the town began to grow, built up for the most part by families seeking the atmosphere of a scholarly community where life moved along at a leisurely pace, and where time spent in contemplation or friendly discourse might not be despised.

It was inevitable in such an environment that the garden should find itself an integral part of every home. The fragrant odor of boxwood hedges, mingled with the perfume of old fashioned blossoms, was as much a part of early Athens as the homes themselves.

The University itself was a garden-minded institution, maintaining as early as the year 1833 a botanical garden which with its more than two thousand plants, shrubs and trees gathered from all parts of the globe, was one of the showplaces of the nation. This garden was later abandoned, and the beautiful ravine where it flourished was sold.

The interest in horticulture among the town people, however, still persisted, and in the year 1891, a small group of Athens ladies, most of them from the section of the city known as Cobbham, formed themselves into a Garden Club. The first meeting was held and the Club organized in the parlor of the home of Mrs. E. K. Lumpkin who, until her death, was the guiding spirit of the organization. The members were 12 in number: Mrs. Lamar Cobb, Mrs. W. B. Burnette, Mrs. John Gerdine, Mrs. R. D. Mure, Mrs. Tinsley Rucker, Mrs. G. C. Thomas, Mrs. T. P. Vincent, Mrs. Henry S. West, Mrs. S. J. Tribble, Miss Julia Carlton, Mrs. H. C. Lowrance, and Mrs. E. K. Lumpkin. Mrs. Cobb was president, Mrs. Lumpkin was vice-president and chairman of the executive committee. Mrs. Tribble was secretary. Miss Carlton was treasurer. Advising with the group and assisting them was Dr. E. D. Newton, a brother of Mrs. Cobb, and a horticulturist of wide repute. The membership was limited, and new members taken in by invitation only.

Mrs. Lamar Cobb

Mrs. W. B. Burnette

Mrs. John Gerdine

Mrs. R. D. Mure

Mrs. Tinsley Rucker

Mrs. G. C. Thomas

Mrs. T. P. Vincent

Mrs. Henry S. West

Mrs. S. J. Tribble

Miss Julia Carlton

Mrs. H. C. Lowrance

Mrs. E. K. Lumpkin

At the suggestion of Dr. Newton, it was later decided to change the charter of the Club from a small, select social group to one of large usefulness. Accordingly, in 1892, the membership of the Club was thrown open and every lady in the city who might be interested in learning to grow anything "from a cabbage to a chrysanthemum" was invited to join.


Mrs. F. Phinizy Calhoun

Mrs. Robert Lee Cooney

The Garden Club of Georgia was organized June 8, 1928 at the Biltmore Hotel in Atlanta with 29 member clubs and two members-at-large as charter members. Mrs. F. Phinizy Calhoun (Marion) of Atlanta was elected as the first president, and Mrs. Robert Lee Cooney (Loraine) was elected Honorary President. The first Annual Meeting was held April 3-4, 1929 in Augusta.

The first Garden Club of Georgia convention held in Augusta, April 3-4, 1929 at the Bon Air Hotel

Mrs. Calhoun served only one year, as she felt her main contribution was to organize the State Club and to represent the Garden Club of Georgia at the first meeting of the National Council of State Garden Clubs in Washington DC in June 1929. The Garden Club of Georgia became a member of the National Council of State Garden Clubs, Inc. in 1931.


Mrs. Joseph Speer

Under the leadership of Mrs. Joseph Speer (Harriet) of Augusta, the club grew rapidly in membership and was directed in making "The State Beautiful." Highway Beautification resulted in 3 1/2 miles being planted including one mile of trees and 1900 crepe myrtles; 5,000 roadside signs removed. Rules for membership were adopted and twenty-five cents per member dues were recommended for the next administration.


Mrs. Clarence Anderson

Mrs. Clarence Anderson (Mary) of Savannah, stressed conservation during her term of office. There were 21 clubs admitted during the year, making a total membership of 88 clubs. Speakers for the 1932 annual convention in Athens included Mrs. Sheffield Phelps, President of the Garden Club of South Carolina; Mrs. W. L. Lockwood, President of Garden Club of America; Mrs. Frederic Kellogg, President of National Council. A gavel and block made from the historic "Tree That Owns Itself", inscribed with the names of the state presidents, was presented to The Garden Club of Georgia by Athens Garden Club.


Mrs. Thomas Berry

It was Mrs. Thomas Berry (Isabelle) of Rome who established our official publication, Garden Gateways. Mrs. Calder Willingham, Rome, was the first editor. Mrs. Berry also organized the Garden Club Pilgrimages. At both annual meetings in Columbus 1933 and Atlanta 1934 national officers were in attendance.

Mrs. Franklin D. Roosevelt was made an honorary member of The Garden Club of Georgia. The Cherokee Rose was recommended as the State flower by The Garden Club of Georgia and the Brown Thrasher was recommended as the State bird. Both were accepted officially by the State of Georgia.


Mrs. T. H. McHatton

Great activity among the clubs was evident during the administration of Mrs. T. H. McHatton (Marie) of Athens. There were many new clubs formed and 30 became affiliated with the State organization. Twenty-three Garden Centers were established. The first Garden School was held in Athens. The brown thrasher was officially adopted as the state bird. Uniform scrapbooks were made compulsory for competitive awards. At the Annual meeting in Albany in 1936, a fund was started to be known as the Founders Memorial Fund. Horticulture ribbons were created for awards at Flower Shows. Conservation and roadside beautification were widely stressed. The Men's Garden Club of Savannah joined The Garden Club of Georgia as the first mens club to be organized in Georgia.


Mrs. Donald M. Hastings

It was Mrs. Donald M. Hastings (Louise) who put into the state organization its first deep interest in flower arranging. She lectured to hundreds of clubs and assisted in setting up model flower shows. Under her leadership an educational program on Roadside Development was assisted by the part time landscape architect of the State Highway Board. A one day school on Garden Design was held in Brunswick in October 1937. Garden Club Pilgrimages in the state were given much favorable publicity nationally. "The Southern Garden Book" by Mrs. Hastings was a great contribution to Georgia's fame as a garden conscious state.


Mrs. Reynolds Flournoy

While Mrs. Reynolds Flournoy (Mattie) of Columbus was President, the Founders Memorial Garden honoring the Ladies Garden Club of Athens, as the first garden club in America, was established on the old University of Georgia campus, surrounding the quarters of the Landscape Architecture Department. Professor Hubert B. Owens, with the approval of the President of the University of Georgia, proposed that the Landscape Architecture Department design a plan for the series of gardens, superintend the grading, the construction and planting, and the Garden Club of Georgia in turn would supply the funds. The University of Georgia promised the maintenance of the gardens after they were completed. The boxwood garden was the first unit completed. Mrs. Flournoy was keenly interested in conservation and made great efforts to educate the members with her programs along those lines.

A collection of paintings of wild flowers was begun, 100 pictures being given by clubs from over the State. Garden Gateways was published nine times each year. An innovation was made by Mrs. Flournoy when she held Presidents Conferences in seven towns, Brunswick, Waycross, Rome, Columbus, Thomaston, Monroe and Waynesboro.


Mrs Murdock Equen

Mrs Murdock Equen (Ann) of Atlanta threw her energies toward the perfecting of the Founders Memorial Garden and substantial sums of money were raised for this project. Mrs. John W. Grant, Chairman of Roadside Development made real efforts to get signs and billboards off the highways. The Annual Meeting in 1941 was held in Augusta and the one in 1942 in Savannah.


Mrs. Thomas Brumby

Mrs. Thomas Brumby (Cordelia) of Atlanta was the War-Time President. Her one thought was to keep the garden clubs active during this troubled period and she encouraged Victory Gardens. Many clubs did landscaping at Army camps and government hospitals. Supplying hospitals and recreation centers with flowers was routine work for the clubs and was a most compensating activity.

Mrs. Brumby had the first written contract between the Editor of Garden Gateways and the Garden Club of Georgia. She had the Club invest $500.00 in U. S. Defense Bonds. $2,500 was contributed to the American Red Cross for an ambulance to be sent overseas. Because of the gasoline shortage, garden schools were held in eight different towns, the University of Georgia co-sponsoring all of these.

The Annual Meetings in 1943 and in 1944 were held in Atlanta. The National Council of State Garden Clubs in conjunction with the South Atlantic Region held the Annual Meeting in Atlanta when the State convention was held. $600.00 was presented to the National Council to start a national scholarship fund to train students in Horticulture.

Mrs. Brumby was appointed the first National Chairman of Scholarships. (Note: It is fitting that recently the National Council named a Landscape Architecture Scholarship in her memory, the Cordelia Gray Brumby Scholarship Fund). The first Student Loan went to a University of Georgia student for the study of Horticulture.


Mrs. Robert Neely

Mrs. Robert Neely (Louise) of Waynesboro found that war conditions had stopped work on the Founders Memorial Garden. As soon as the clouds of war lifted, she renewed interest in this statewide project. Through her efforts $4,000.00 was raised for the garden. She had an undeveloped area of the garden designated as a Living Memorial Arboretum to honor the men and women in Georgia who had served in the war, "those who had given much and those who had given all." After leaving the Presidency, Mrs. Neely served as Chairman of Founders Memorial Garden from 1946 through 1952.


Mrs. Aubrey Matthews

Mrs. Aubrey Matthews (Sue) of Rome urged the formation of new clubs and a return of the club members to garden work since Peace had come. Three new committees were added: Blue Star Highway, Conventions, and Flower Arranging. A Flower Show clinic was held in 1946 in Athens sponsored by the Garden Club of Georgia in cooperation with the Landscape Architecture Department of the University of Georgia. 300 members attended.

National Council Judging Schools were sponsored by the Garden Club of Georgia. A list of Native Plants needing State protection was compiled. Garden Pilgrimages were revived when 16 towns participated in the new Visiting Gardens program. This was the year the Garden Club of Georgia was incorporated and became The Garden Club of Georgia, Inc.


Mrs. R J. Carmichel

During Mrs. R J. Carmichel's (Katherine) (Macon) administration two National Awards were won and three Purple Ribbons for Flower Show Achievement. The Fisher Garden Center award was won by Carrollton Garden Center; A Certificate of Merit went to the Pine Tree Garden Club of Atlanta for the Restoration of the grounds of the Atlanta Historical Society. The Purple Ribbons were won by the Shellman Garden Club, the Gainesville Garden Club and the Cordele Garden Club. $105.00 was contributed to National Council as Georgia's part toward the purchase of Redwood Grove which was the 20th Anniversary Gift of National Council of State Garden Clubs to the Nation. Two Blue Star Highway markers were erected, one in Augusta, one in Baxley. The collection of Wild Flower Paintings was re-conditioned. $810.00 was contributed to the Blue Star Memorial Fund. Junior Gardening was encouraged with the Chairman, Mrs. Charles L. Hardy, publishing "Notes on Forming Junior Garden Clubs in Georgia."


Mrs. Rembert Marshall

Mrs. Rembert Marshall's (Harriett) (Atlanta) administration was marked by the steady increase in clubs, 118 being affiliated during 1950 and 1951 with a total membership of 16,928. Four National Awards were won: Silver Seal by the Garden Club of Georgia for Founders Memorial Garden; Certificate of Merit by Mrs. Rodney Cohen for work done on Restoration of the Medical College in Augusta; The Helen Chaplin award for Junior Gardening to the Garden Gate Garden Club of Atlanta; the Bronze Seal to the Garden Club of Georgia for sponsoring the publication of "Ferns of Georgia." Purple Ribbons for flower shows were won by the Marshallville Garden Club, the Junior Flower Show Association of Atlanta; the Garden Club of Valdosta for the first Standard Hemerocallis Show to be held in the United States. A Bronze marker for Founders Memorial Garden was given by the Ladies Garden Club of Athens. A Garden Therapy program was begun with the gift by Mrs. Murdock Equen of garden tools for the Institute for the Blind in Macon.


Mrs. A. N. Dykes

Mrs. A. N. Dykes (Margaret) of Columbus gave much of her time to visiting clubs and holding workshops for them. She contributed, besides her talents, much from her garden. At the Annual meeting she gave each person present an amaryllis bulb. She gave 24 carloads of hemerocallis clumps to clubs for their civic plantings. A colored film of Homes and Gardens in Georgia was made. The Ida Cason Gardens offered to give 10% of receipts of garden tours sponsored by garden clubs for a period of five years, the money to go to State Headquarters Fund. The eighth Blue Star Marker was erected at Wrens.

National Council of State Garden Clubs made a gift of a marble statue to the Founders Memorial Garden. Mrs. William Walters, National President, spoke at the dedication ceremony. A plant labeling machine was purchased and plastic labels were placed on trees and shrubs identifying them.

A Television-Radio committee was added to the list of committees. During 1952 and 1953, 42 radio and TV programs were televised. The size of Garden Gateways was reduced to an easier-to-handle booklet and the number of issues was reduced from nine to only six each year.

When the Twenty-fifth (Silver Anniversary) Convention was held in Augusta in March 1953, a gold pin was given to the President to be passed on to succeeding presidents, and the silver pin was presented to each Past-president. The 1954 Annual Meeting was held in Macon. At that time the dues were increased from 40 cents to 50 cents. The Georgia Gardeners Calendar was first printed and the surplus over cost was designated for scholarships at the University of Georgia Landscape Architecture Department.


Mrs. T. J. Smith

Mrs. T. J. Smith (Lucile) negotiated with the President of the University of Georgia to have the Landscape Architecture Buildings on the Campus for State Headquarters for the Garden Club of Georgia. Inc. Funds for the renovation under her leadership amounted to nearly nine thousand dollars. For the National Permanent Home she encouraged the clubs to give 100% contributions, thus raising $4,078.00.

A pamphlet, "Wildflowers of Georgia" by Mrs. Edmund Cook of West Point State Chairman of Conservation, was published in 1955. For the Conservation program 4,951,916 trees were reported as planted. From the sales of Calendars two $300.00 scholarships were given to the University of Georgia Landscape Architecture Department.

The Garden Club of Georgia was hostess to the South Atlantic Region at St. Simons Island in February 1956. The Garden Club of Georgia endorsed the publishing-of Birds of Georgia by Burleigh and Sutton. The paintings, valued at $10,000, used in this book will be given to the University of Georgia.

Georgia won 14 National awards as follows:

  • For Christmas Show, Macon Federation Garden Clubs
  • For Garden Therapy, The Peachtree Heights Garden Club of Atlanta
  • Seventh Region Radio-TV award to The Garden Club of Georgia
  • Radio-TV award to The Garden Club of Georgia
  • National Gardeners Subscription Certificate to The Garden Club of Georgia
  • Purple Ribbons for Flower Shows to the Cassina Garden Club of St. Simons Island
  • Purple Ribbons for Flower Shows to the Charter Club of West Point
  • The Rose Rosette for Council Flower Show to the Atlanta Junior Flower Show Association
  • The Red, White, and Blue Flower Show award to the Acworth Garden Club

  • All of these in 1955 and the following in 1956
  • Fisher Garden Center Medal to the Federated Garden Cluh of Macon
  • The Radio-TV Award to The Garden Club of Georgia
  • Purple Ribbons for Flower Shows to The Greensboro Garden Club
  • Purple Ribbons for Flower Shows to the Four Seasons Garden Club of Atlanta
  • The Rose Rosette was won by the Marietta Council of Garden Clubs


Mrs. Shelby Myrick

During Mrs. Shelby Myrick's (Mary), Savannah, term of office the contract between the Board of Regents and the Garden Club of Georgia for establishing State Headquarters on the campus of the University of Georgia was clarified. The main building will not be available until the completion of the Fine Arts Center. But the immediate use of the Kitchen for temporary State Headquarters was granted. A budget was set up to carry out renovations to this building, equipping an office and employing a paid secretary.

Two $300.00 scholarships to the Landscape Architecture School were realized each year by profits from the sale of calendars. In her acceptance speech, Mrs. Myrick pledged her efforts to "Keep Georgia Beautiful and Clean." She succeeded in having established the custom of the Governor Proclaiming one day each year as Anti-Litter Bug Day. The Roadside Committee beseeched the State authorities to enforce the law on throwing trash on the highways. Rome garden clubs held a Litter Bug poetry contest when 500 poems were submitted. At the Annual meeting in Columbus in 1957 the theme of the Presidents Breakfast was Litter Bug, and Mrs. E. N. Deuter, National Litter Bug chairman, was the speaker.

The dues were raised to 75 cents to take care of increased costs of Garden Gateways. 538,702 trees were planted. There were 1,290 known bird sanctuaries and 2,054 feeding stations. The Garden Club of Georgia urged the passage of the bill to protect the title "Landscape Architect." The 23rd Garden School in 1957 was a Landscape Design Study Course for Garden Clubs. This was used as a model for other states. All issues of Garden Gateways were compiled and will be bound for use in the library. A Garden Tour of Europe was sponsored in 1957 with Mrs. Aubrey Matthews as Director. The fiscal year was changed to run from March 1 through the last day of February and the election of officers was changed to the odd years to conform with the schedule of National Council. Standing Rules for local clubs were let up to encourage the clubs to also elect officers for a two year term in the odd years. At the Annual meeting in Augusta in 1958, Mrs. Daniel J. Moon, the National President, was the banquet speaker and Mrs. Brooks Fleming, South Atlantic Regional Director, spoke at the Presidents' breakfast. A Blue Star Marker was placed in Swainsboro. The History of the Blue Star Highway in Georgia was prepared by the Chairman, Mrs. James L. Gillis. New clubs were admitted, making a total of 738 clubs.

In 1958 the Junior Gardening Committee established a Standard of Excellence for Junior Clubs and 10 clubs were given certificates at the Annual meeting.

For the two years the Garden Club of Georgia received the following National awards:

  • The Hilda Fox award ($25) for Roadside Improvement was won by the Fort Valley Garden Club
  • The Gordonston Garden Club won the Yearbook award for club of 25 to 49 members
  • The Lorena M. Spillers award in Landscape Design was won by the Garden Club of Georgia for its continued Landscape Design schools, Landscape issue of Gateways and programs in local clubs
  • Purple Ribbons for Flower Shows went to Cassina Garden Club of St. Simons Island, Moonflower Garden Club of Atlanta, Four Seasons Garden Club of Atlanta, and Morning Glory Garden Club of Marietta
  • The Rose Rosette for a council show was won by Atlanta Flower Show Association and Federated Garden Clubs of Macon

In 1957, a Regional award, Silver Bowl, for School Grounds Improvement went to the Junior Garden Club sponsored by the Gordonston Club of Savannah. In 1958, the Garden Club of Georgia received Honorable mention for increase in interest and number of Junior Garden Clubs. Garden Gateways won 1st place in the Flower Growers Award for State publications for its content and 2nd place for Presentation. Mrs. Haskell Venard of the Northridge Garden Club won second place in the National Gardener Poster Contest.


Mrs. Nathaniel S. Turner

Although the term of Mrs. Nathaniel S. Turner (Martha) of Covington as President was fixed at the Annual meeting as a one-year term so that the elections of the Garden Club of Georgia would coincide with the National elections, her accomplishments were great. The FIRST Landscape Design School Course I to be nationally accredited was held in Athens in September, 1958, and Course II was planned for May 1959. Work on the Kitchen Building was completed, furnishings begun and the office equipped. The Dedication Ceremony was held in September 1958, with Mrs. Daniel Mooney, National President, as speaker. Dr. O. C. Aderhold, President of the University of Georgia, formally tendered the Kitchen Building as State Headquarters for the Garden Club of Georgia, Inc. Following the dedication the garden clubs of Athens served tea in the garden.

A Cooperative Tricolor Ribbon was designated for use by Plant Societies holding flower shows. Gifts to National Permanent Home included a table, in memory of Mrs. Clarence Anderson, a past president of Georgia; $2,000 to insure the name of the Garden Club of Georgia, Inc., being inscribed on the wall in the Garden of Givers. $500 was given to establish Mr. Hubert B. Owens as Founder of the Permanent Home. Two life members to National Council also increased the gifts to the Permanent Home.

It was voted at the Annual meeting in 1959 to divide the Garden Clubs into Districts. A committee, Mrs. Charles Hardy, Chairman, was authorized to publish in lieu of the Yearbook of Gateways, a "Georgia Garden Club Guide", which will serve as a source of information for officers and club presidents as well as the garden club members. 45 new clubs were admitted during the year. 45 new chairmen were added to the club chairmen for National Council Books, a wonderful source of income for local clubs and the Garden Club Georgia. Six new Garden Centers were organized, making the number now 57. Two $300 scholarships were given to the Landscape Architecture School at the University of Georgia through profits from calendar sales.

The following National awards were received:

  • The Kellogg Medal for Civic Achievement by the Gainesville Garden Club Council
  • Yearbook award to club of 15 to 24 members to the Clay Hills Garden Club of Atlanta
  • Purple Ribbons for Flower Shows went to the Laurel Garden Club of Atlanta and the Greensboro Garden Club
  • The Rose Rosette for a Council Show to the Garden Council of Sandy Springs, Atlanta

There are now 777 garden clubs in Georgia.


Mrs. Edwin Fulcher

The years 1959-61 were filled with many accomplishments under the guidance of Mrs. Edwin Fulcher (Rachel), President. The first issue of The Guide was edited by Mrs. Charles Hardy. For the Circulation Manager of Gateways an addressograph machine, automatic stencil cutter, moistener, and office chair were purchased. The state was divided into 6 Districts in 1959. In 1961, an extra District was added, so now we have seven District Directors. Two $300 scholarships were given to students in 1959; three were given in 1960. A die for a president's gold pin and a die of The Seal of the Garden Club of Georgia, Inc. from which medals and pins may be made for statewide contests were purchased.

Placed in the Books of Appreciation and Remembrance in the Permanent Home in St. Louis were the names of the seventeen past presidents of the Garden Club of Georgia, Inc. and the founder. Two life Memberships were added to the National Council list; National Gardener gained 116 new subscriptions.

Governor Vandiver proclaimed March as Anti-litterbug Month. A statewide litterbug Essay Contest was conducted. A Roadside Improvement Conference was held in Athens in 1961; a Radio and Television Workshop was held there in 1960; and the landscape Study Course in 1960 (96 appraisers received certificates). At the Macon Convention in 1960, an Honorary Life Membership in the Garden Club of Georgia was conferred upon Mr. Hubert Owens. Georgia now is in the Deep South Region, as the South Atlantic Region was divided. The Garden Clubs of Georgia responded to the pleas of the clubs in Milledgeville with financial aid for the ambitious therapy program at the State Hospital. They have formed eight garden clubs that include 400 patients. Voluntary contributions of $3,349.61 were received from the first call; $3,019.14 came in from the second plea in 1961. Support was also given to the Chapel of All Faiths, which is to be erected on the State Hospital grounds, by clubs and individuals totaling $702.50. For this activity a Certificate of Award from the Georgia Department of Public Health and the State Hospital was presented to the Garden Club of Georgia, Inc. in recognition of outstanding service in the cause of public health through the support given in the program of Garden Therapy. This is the first award ever given by the Georgia Department of Public Health and the State Hospital to any organization.

A new block with a silver band and gavel were purchased in 1960. The band is to record the names and term of office of state presidents. Two awards were added, the Placement Flower Show Award and the Poetry Award. An additional chairmanship was added to the State Board, High School Gardeners.

In 1960 Convention the following people were given Certificates of Merit: Mrs. John Thompson of Smyrna, Mrs. Hugh Lester of Atlanta, Mrs. Ann Lewis of Decatur and Mrs. C. P. Whiting of Albany. In 1961 Certificates of Merit were awarded to Mr. E. T. Newsome, horticulturist at the State Hospital; Mr. George Smith, horticulturist for Savannah City Parks; and Mr. Porter Carswell of Waynesboro for legislative action on roadside beautification.

Georgia received in 1960 the following National Awards:

  • Purple Ribbon, Johnson Estates Garden Club of Atlanta
  • Yearbook Award in B-No. 2, Northridge Garden Club of Atlanta
  • Rose Rosette, Decatur Flower Show Association of Decatur
  • The Garden Club of Georgia, Inc. won the Radio - Television Award

Georgia received in 1961 the following National Awards:

  • Purple Ribbon, Town and Country Garden Club of Atlanta and Sherwood Forest Garden Club of Atlanta
  • White Ribbon Special Achievement Certificate, Cherokee Garden Club of Atlanta and Mrs. Hansell Hillyer of Savannah
  • Rose Rosette, Garden Club Council of Sandy Springs of Atlanta
  • Red and Green Rosette, Northridge Garden Club in Atlanta
  • Yearbook Award, Northridge Garden Club of Atlanta
  • Garden Therapy Certificate of Merit for the Garden Club of Georgia, Inc.
  • Second Place in the Smokey the Bear Coloring Contest for Juniors went to Waycross

The South Atlantic Region won the National Award No. 12 and a Certificate of Merit for Unified Regional Activity in Garden Therapy.

It was our privilege to have at 1960 Convention Mrs. E. N. Merriwether, Regional Director and Mrs. J. C. Palmer III, National Council's recording secretary, as speakers. In 1961 we were fortunate to have Mrs. Jamie Johnson, our National Council President, and Dr. Kenneth McFarland to inspire us as speakers. Our state is to be honored by the National Council Convention in April 1963 in Atlanta. The culmination of this regime was climaxed when Dr. O. C. Aderhold, president of the University of Georgia, wrote that the large house that centers our Founder's Memorial Garden would be tendered to the Garden Club of Georgia, Inc. on December 31, 1961, as State Headquarters for the Garden Club of Georgia, Inc., at last.


Mrs. Claude J. Carter

During the 1961-1963 administration of Mrs. Claude J. Carter (Marie), the Charter Life Membership increased to 33 and the National Life Members in Georgia to 27. Thirteen cities held delightful house and garden tours in 1962; ten cities joined the statewide "Trail of Charm" tours in 1963. The 17,000 engagement calendars brought a profit of $1,920.00 in 1962; the 1963 Georgia Garden and Kitchen Calendar netted $2,249.00 for scholarships in the Landscape Architecture Department, University of Georgia. "Gems from Georgia Kitchens" a colorfully illustrated spiral bound cookbook has nearly 700 recipes. All receipts from the 25,000 cookbooks will go toward the restoration and furnishing of the State Headquarters in Athens, the two-story 1857 brick home located in the Founders Garden on the University of Georgia campus. The Garden, a mecca for club pilgrimages, was featured in color in a national magazine and in a new book of gardens. The second edition of the useful Georgia Garden Club Guide was published.

Clubs donated thousands of dollars to the Milledgeville Garden Therapy project and sent many articles to patients. Conservation activities included "Operation Orchid" a wildflower project, and the marking of a nature trail in a national forest. In Georgia there are 337 judges of whom 14 hold Master and 103 hold Life Certificates as well as a Landscape Appraisers Council with 35 members. At the Deep South Regional Meeting in 1963, the Hilda Fox Roadside Development Award of $100.00 was presented to the Garden Club of Georgia for tremendous statewide effort toward securing bill­board control on interstate highways.

In April, 1963, Georgia entertained 2,933 guests at the largest convention in National Council history. Visitors from Alaska to the Virgin Islands enjoyed Atlanta's springtime weather and floral beauty. Tours and flower shows were added attractions to the 16 events, which club members from all Districts worked tirelessly on exciting decorations, delightful favors and numerous convention projects. Among notable National Awards presented were the National Council Scholarship to a Georgia landscape design student and the Silver Seal to Hubert B. Owens, Athens. After the convention, 150 guests went on the "Georgia Hospitality Tour" and enjoyed sightseeing and social events with Georgia's gracious garden clubs as hostesses.


Mrs. Lawson Neel

The administration of Mrs. Lawson Neel (Josie) was highlighted by the long awaited opening of the beautifully restored Headquarters House in October of 1964 under the guidance of Mrs. James T. Anderson, Restoration Chairman. The restoration was the fulfillment of a dream of the early 1950's and has been a continuing project with gifts of accessories and furniture donated by clubs throughout the state. The major means of financing the restoration was the sale of the cookbook, GEMS FROM GEORGIA KITCHENS. During the past two years clubs have sold 12,282 cookbooks for a total net profit of $12,247.70.

The strengthening of the individual dubs has been a major emphasis of this regime. Entries made by the clubs in the different award areas have been clear evidence of the progress made. Five national awards were received. Clubs reported 333 civic projects in 1964 and 486 in 1965. Interesting and enriching programs have been developed under the direction and guidance of the district directors and their boards. Workshops, schools and training programs have been scheduled during the last year. Six flower show schools were held with 87 certificates being awarded. Seventeen towns became bird sanctuaries and seventeen new roadside parkways were developed. In the statewide "Wheel of Flowers" 165 towns participated. Blue Star Memorial Markers were placed on 1-75 and 1-20 as beautification began on these new throughways. The Deep South Regional Meeting was held in Savannah. Charter life members increased to 95, and 51 members now hold certificates as amateur landscape design appraisers. The Landscape Architecture Department of the University of Georgia, in cooperation with National Council, held a Civic Development Conference in Athens headed by Mrs. Claude Carter and Prof. Hubert Owens. Again, Georgia led in the number of High School Gardeners with 453 registered under Mrs. Douglas Barnard, Jr.

Fourteen garden clubs composed of patients in Milledgeville State Hospital met each week with an average of 52 patients in attendance at each meeting. Volunteer workers directed each meeting. To finance this Garden Therapy program, $6.000.00 was contributed by clubs in the state. Hundreds of additional gifts were sent. Highway eautification was a major objective and the greatest achievement was the passage of a Billboard Control Act by the State Legislature with Mrs. Ralph Allison as leader of the garden clubbers campaign. The dedication of the Buffalo Nut Trail at Lake Winfield Scott was the result of a cooperative conservation project between The Garden Club of Georgia and the U.S. Forest Service. This is a self-guiding nature trail in the Chattahoochee National Forest. The two landscape scholarships were continued, and the Mrs. Pat Busbee scholarship was added. Our objectives to give and to build were achieved in the making of a more beautiful Georgia.


Mrs. Carey Williams

"A More Beautiful Georgia Today for Tomorrow" was the theme for the two year term of Mrs. Carey Williams (Celeste).

Mr. Allen Seed. of New York, Executive Vice President of "Keep America Beautiful", was the featured speaker of the 1966 State Convention in Atlanta.

Two $150 Scholarships were given for the Conservation Workshops.

The Roadside Development Chairman, Mrs. Ralph Allison, with other Garden Club members had a great part in Georgia being one of the first states to pass the Highway Beauty Bill.

In 1967 The Garden Club of Georgia led the nation in the increase of Garden Centers and Councils.

The club will participate in the long-range project at the Rehabilitation Garden and Recreation Center at the State Hospital, the cost of which will be more than $50,000.

The number of Charter Life Members was completed and a plaque with all the names was placed at State Headquarters.

Two Symposiums were held in Athens.

Junior Gardeners did outstanding work at the Cave Spring School for Deaf Children.

Greater interest has been manifested in World Gardening and more money has been contributed than ever before.

The Garden Club of Georgia received seven National awards in 1967.

A new chairmanship was added to the State Board, National Projects. With Mrs. James Crowley as chairman, more than $6,000 was contributed to the Permanent Home in St. Louis beside $3,577.00 from the state, making The Garden Club of Georgia a 100% participant. As a result, The Garden Club of Georgia received at the National Convention in 1967 the following citation: "In recognition of the 100% participation in the Permanent Home Fund." Since the first garden club in America was founded in Athens, it is fitting that The Garden Club of Georgia, Inc. receive this citation.


Mrs. Pierce Blitch

Two years of cooperation, progress and accomplishment marked the administration of Mrs. Pierce Blitch (Ernestine). "Seeking Beauty Thru' Creative Gardening" was the theme. Many awards were won; among them the National Certificate of Merit on the 1967-68 Garden Club Guide; the National Anti-litter trophy; the Hubert Bond Owens Landscape Critics silver trophy (permanent), which is on display at State Headquarters. Also a Garden Club won the Deep South trophy for School Grounds Improvement.

The book "All in Favor Say Something" written by Runa E. Ware, including parliamentary hints was sponsored by The Garden Club of Georgia, Inc. Over 2,000 copies sold for the benefit of State Headquarters.

The intensive work of a Gateways Committee appointed in 1967 was reflected in a more interesting and informative publication. Much work was done to lay the groundwork for obtaining a special postage rate. An amendment to the Charter was made showing we are an educational organization. Bylaws were revised.

Profit of $1,838.00 made through the sale of floral notepaper by Garden Clubs. $1,000.00 of this profit was approved to pay for the teaching guides for the book "The Never, Never Land of Poisonous Plants" was used in the schools for children 4 to 8 years of age, project of the Junior Gardeners Chairman. An additional profit of $500.00 was designated for scholarship in decorative arts at the University of Georgia.

Sale of calendars for Landscape Design scholarships had great success each year.

We are responsible for 10 full and 1 partial scholarship in conservation and were active in seeking the protection of Georgia rivers; protesting the leasing of coastal marshes and estuaries to phosphate mining; working for the establishment of "Keep America Beautiful, Inc." in Georgia, supporting the newly established Roadside Development Council, and also protested the changing of our state bird from the brown thrasher to the bob white quail.

Five courses in Landscape Design were held and Georgia's seventy active landscape critics and active councils worked diligently for the preservation of Georgia's marshlands.

Fifteen courses in Flower Show Schools were completed and successful Symposiums were held each year with attendance high and fine out-of-state representation.

Junior and High School Gardeners increased in numbers, and we continued to lead in the number of High School Gardeners in National Council.

Garden Therapy continues to help patients in 18 clubs in State mental hospitals with 600 members. Work is being continued on the Rehabilitation Park in Milledgeville.

The office at State Headquarters was remodeled at a cost of $4,949.43. A new fund was authorized in September 1968 with the sum of $10,000.00 set aside and invested, and the income designated for the maintenance of Headquarters. Plans were made to add to this fund as money becomes available. The board was authorized to use funds from principal should major repairs necessitate.


Mrs. James T. Anderson

Mrs. James T. Anderson's (Jennie) administration saw a significant change in the award procedure. Trophies were to be kept at State Headquarters permanently. Winning clubs were to receive a small silver tray which they were to keep and serve as chairman in getting Georgia to join "Keep America Beautiful" and establish a "Keep America Beautiful" Commission.

Calendar sales exceeded $4,800.00 in 1969-70 and $5,800.00 in 1970-71. From these sales, we have been able to grant three graduate student fellowships of $900.00 each, four undergraduate scholarships of $350.00 each in the School of Environmental Design, a horticultural scholarship of $1,000.00, and one $500 scholarship in the School of Fine Arts at the University of Georgia. In 1969-70, nine teacher scholarships of $150.00 each were awarded to attend the Georgia Natural Resources Institutes. In 1970-71, fifteen scholarships were sent to these Institutes. An Environmental Conference was attended by many Garden clubbers at Timberidge Girl Scout Camp in Mableton, Georgia in September 1970. A major project to underwrite a Botanical Garden at the University of Georgia was launched in 1969 giving $1,000.00 that year. In 1970-71 it was voted to ask each member of the Garden Club of Georgia to contribute $1.00 toward this garden amounting to approximately $22,000.00.

In March 1971, we dedicated our Rehabilitation Garden for patients at Central State Hospital in Milledgeville strengthening our Garden Therapy program. Funds for this garden were solicited by Mrs. Claude Brown, a board member. The Garden Club of Georgia gave $1000, and many hours of work by the Milledgeville Garden Club contributed toward this project. Over $5,000.00 has been contributed each year and is channeled through Central State Hospital for their program, and through the Garden Therapy programs at Thomasville State Hospital, Bainbridge State Hospital and Augusta Hospital.

Dues to the Garden Club of Georgia were raised to $1.50 per year by unanimous vote at the Convention at Callaway Gardens in April 1971.

A money-making travel project, under the auspices of Duffy-Rittenhouse Travel Agency was arranged.

Two books were sponsored, "Flora of the Golden Isles" by Mrs. Albert Fendig and Mrs. Esther Stewart, both of St. Simons Island. This botanical study was received extremely well academically and in all areas. Part of the funds from this book was designated for the Botanical Garden at the University of Georgia. Secondly, "Oconee Architecture" by Mr. John Linley of the School of Environmental Design, University of Georgia. This was an architectural, agricultural, sociological and economical study of the Oconee watershed. The Garden Club of Georgia received $2.00 on each book sold.

Our coloring book, "The Never Never Land of Poisonous Plants" was published through the State Health Department and was used as an education guide in the third grade of every school in the state of Georgia. We accepted the National Council of State Garden Clubs project, "People and Their Environment." The teacher curriculum guide, "People and Their Environment," was accepted by the Governor of the State of Georgia, State Superintendent of Schools, and the State Curriculum Directors. Our goal was to make this teacher guide the property of every school in Georgia and available available for reference for every teacher in the hope of of bringing environmental education to every child in Georgia from the first through twelfth grades beginning September of 1971.

Mrs. Charles Yarn, Co-Chairman of Conservation, was named "Conservationist of the Year" in Georgia, 1970-71; and also "Woman of the Year in Atlanta for 1971." Miss Elizabeth Mason, Co-Chairman of Conservation, and National Council Chairman of Conservation, planned and executed a most successful Environmental Conference in Washington, D. C., February 17-18, 1970.

Our State Headquarters House was recognized in collector's catalogue published in conjunction with the High Museum of Art in October, 1969. This catalogue was sent all over the United States, and the lead article was our Headquarters House. Headquarters House was also given recognition in the GEORGIA MAGAZINE, December 1970. A garden brochure has been provided by the School of Environment and Design, University of Georgia, identifying the entire flora in our 2 1/2 acre garden. The Garden Club of Georgia entertained the Deep South Regional Convention in Atlanta, March 24, 25, 26, 1971; 1400 garden club members attended the seven outstanding District meetngs.


Mrs. George W. Ray

The theme which Mrs. George W. Ray (Mary Helen) of Savannah chose for her administration "Our Heritage, Our Challenge: The Quality of Life" reflecting the broad interests of The Garden Club of Georgia, Inc.

Several projects begun by Past Presidents were brought to fruition at this time:

  • The publication of a brochure concerning State Headquarters
  • The publication of a coloring book, "The Never, Never Land of Poisonous Plants"
  • The publication of a second cookbook, "More Gems from Georgia Kitchens." Part of the proceeds from the sale of this cookbook and from Runa Ware's "All Those in Favor" was designated to air condition the historic State Headquarters.
  • In addition to the $1,000.00 contributed toward the publication of the introductory brochure, a check for $21,000.00 was presented to the University of Georgia State Botanical Garden, completing a pledge of $1.00 per member. And further, a charter flight to the Chelsea Flower Show in London, sponsored by the Judges' Councils and The Garden Club of Georgia, Inc., netted $2,450.00 for the garden, which is included in the above amount.
  • Another garden approaching completion was the Rehabilitation Garden at Central State Hospital in Milledgeville. This unique garden included a pavilion where patients visited with their families, had picnics, and meditated. The garden therapy program involved 93% participation among our members in 1973. This included programs in Atlanta, Bainbridge, Thomasville, Augusta, and Savannah, in addition to Milledgeville.

A major revision of the bylaws was effected and unanimously adopted at the 1973 Savannah convention.

Included in educational programs during 1971-73 were thirteen Flower Show Schools, and two Annual Symposiums, bringing Georgia's total number of judges to 536. In addition, three courses in Series VI of the Landscape Design Schools were presented. There are 72 graduates of these courses who belong to the Georgia Association of Landscape Design Appraisers (GALDA), an active group for environmental education.

Ten comprehensive Program Kits were prepared by the Program Chairman and widely circulated throughout the state.

A second Environmental Quality Conference was held at Camp Timber Ridge at Mableton in 1971, and a third at Girl Scout Camp Low, at Rose Dhu Island, near Savannah, in 1972. A Mini-Conference was held in Macon in 1971.

The Georgia Engagement Calendar netted $4,500.00 in 1971 and $4,000.00 was awarded in 1972 for scholarships to the University of Georgia School of Environmental Design and Department of Horticulture. The Garden Club of Georgia continued to fund fifteen scholarships, totaling approximately $2,400.00 annually to the Georgia Environmental Education Council Institutes at Rome, Valdosta, and Carrollton.

With the assistance of GALDA and SAVE (Save America's Vital Environment), our legislative arm, the federation supported bills for Billboard Control, Protection of Sea Oats, Wildflower Protection, Flood Plain Control, Ground Water Use and for the funding of the Georgia Heritage Trust. In the field of conservation education, Georgia again led the nation numerically in the purchase of 9,246 People and Their Environment curriculum guides and planned workshops for their use.

Georgia was honored to have hosted the Deep South Region's First Historic and Horticulture Awareness Seminar, at Callaway Gardens, chaired by Mrs. Shelby Myrick, a Past Regional Director. Georgia participated in the Deep South united project, a survey of historic restorations.

In 1973, thirteen national awards were received by The Garden Club of Georgia, Inc.

  • Recognition of the Richard B. Russell Beautification Day, initiated by the Three Seasons Garden Club, in Winder, when 10,000 dogwood trees were planted on this day throughout Georgia
  • Recognition of the restoration of the building of the First Medical School in Georgia for use as the Augusta Garden Center
  • Recognition of GARDEN GATEWAYS and our cookbook, MORE GEMS FROM GEORGIA KITCHENS
  • A National Scholarship recipient, Lawrie Emmett Jordan III, of Athens
  • A Bronze Seal for the completed restoration of a 1857 complex as a State Headquarters and Museum on the campus in Athens, a unique project involving members throughout the state in historic preservation and environmental education


Mrs. John W. Cherry

During the administration of Mrs. John W. Cherry (Beck), of Atlanta, many new projects were started and several "firsts" accomplished. The first statewide flower show was held in conjunction with the 1974 Atlanta convention hosted by the Dogwood District. The sixty out-of-state judges were entertained at brunch at the Governor's Mansion; show was evaluated at 99, 98, and 98. A statewide project of planting wildflowers along Georgia's highways was begun in cooperation with the Dept. of Transportation. Mrs. Cherry, Mrs. Cason Callaway, Sr., Mrs. J. B. Fuqua and Mrs. Jimmy Carter were guests of the Texas Governor and highway officials in Austin to learn first-hand how to begin the project. Later they were guests of Lady Bird Johnson at the LBJ Ranch and attended the Awards Program for Texas' Wildflower Program. Georgia's first annual Highway Wildflower Awards Luncheon was held March 16, 1975, with Lady Bird Johnson as honor guest. Lt. Gov. Zell Miller was master of ceremonies for the 400 guests. A statewide project of "Bringing the Bluebirds Back to Georgia" was highly successful. Gov. Carter proclaimed October 22, 1974 as "Bird Day in Georgia."

A statewide litter-control project was co-sponsored with the Georgia Conservancy. November 2-3, 1973, were state campaign brought lasting results. Another project was begun to report highway litter-offenders. Each offender was sent a letter, car litterbag and copy of Georgia's litter law. A PATE Institute was held each August at Camp Timberidge for teachers, garden clubbers and scout leaders. Over 50,000 youths will learn more about our environment as a result of these institutes. Georgia leads the nation in the number of curriculum guides placed in our schools. A $50.00 award was won by the federation at Salt Lake City for the most outstanding work in the nation with this project.

A record number of 52 new State Life Members were added and 12 new National Life Members. The second printing of children's coloring book, "Never Never Land of Poisonous Plants," came off the press in May 1974. After a UPI story appeared, letters arrived from 48 states and 9 foreign countries requesting 65,000 of these booklets. E.I.P. workshops were held in every district, resulting in Georgia's state winner being one of the 5 national finalists. After on-site judging, the Association of 22 Garden Clubs, Atlanta, won third place of $1,500.00 and a silver tray at Salt Lake City 1975 convention.

Air-conditioning was installed in Headquarters; the kitchen complex was furnished and a mimeograph and stencil machine purchased for the office. The Georgia Chapter of the Soil Conservation Society of America presented their Merit Award to the federation on June 21, 1974, in Rome. Scholarships amounting to $4,000.00 were given both years to the School of Environmental Design at the University. Fifteen scholarships of $180.00 each were given for teachers to attend Environmental Education Institutes held at Shorter, West Georgia and Valdosta Colleges.

The first mini-conservation Youth Conference was held in Moultrie January 1974 with 300 youths attending. A record number of 52 new clubs became federated giving Georgia an overall membership increase of 745 members. This represents 772 clubs, 49 councils and one affiliate. Georgia won the Myrick Membership Award at 1975 Deep South convention in Lake Charles, La., for the greatest membership increase. The Owens Landscape Critics Award went to GALDA for a city wide "Clean Up Days" when a massive School Grounds Improvement Trophy went to Mimosa Garden Club, Atlanta. At 1974 Deep South Convention held in Natchez, Fulton County Federation of Garden Clubs, Atlanta, won the Pumilia Public Relations Award.

A total of $6,345.68 was contributed to World Gardening. The Rose of Sharon Award from American-Korean Foundation was received both years. Seven Blue Star Markers were purchased, five being installed and dedicated. Rehabilitation Gardens at Central State Hospital were dedicated October 22, 1974 with Mrs. Jimmy Carter as speaker. Volunteers work with 21 patient clubs. Over 6000 Christmas stockings were sent to the patients each year. Groundbreaking ceremonies for the Administration Building in Botanical Garden were held July 18, 1974 with the president participating. Funds of $5,000.00 were raised by The Garden Club of Georgia to help with publication costs of Duncan-Foote book, "Wildflowers of the Southeastern United States."

The federation endorsed the marking, planting and commemoration of the Bartram Trail, sought legislation to make it a national hiking and biking trail and gave $1,200.00 to the Georgia Bartram Trail Society to help clear 100 miles of trail through Georgia. Azalea District hosted the 1975 convention in Athens. The 19 semi-finalists for Bicentennial College Contest were on display. The state winner will hang at National Headquarters during 1976. House and Garden tours were held each spring and fall. Tours to Amsterdam and Hawaii netted funds for scholarships as did the 1974 and 1975 Georgia Engagement Calendars. Other ways and means projects were sales of cookbooks, the Ware and Fendig-Stewart books, Bright of America products and Richard Parks bird print. Five Landscape Design Courses were held and 12 Flower Show Schools with an additional statewide series initiated in February 1975 in Macon. Two symposiums drew record attendances.

For the first time in its history, The Garden Club of Georgia, Inc., won more national awards than any other state, both in 1974 and 1975, a feat probably unmatched in National Council history.

The 17 national awards won in 1974 were:

  • 6(4) Mauntel Conservation to Mrs. Cason Callaway, Sr. No. 13(3B) Publications, "Garden Gateways"
  • 13(4) Other Publications, "1974 Georgia Engagement Calendar"
  • 19A Garden Therapy, The Garden Club of Georgia for work in mental hospitals
  • 19C Garden Therapy, Mrs. James R. Craig
  • 23 Bronze Seal, The Garden Club of Georgia for $21,000.00 contribution to Botanical Garden
  • 27C Radio-TV, Federated Garden Clubs of Albany
  • 32A Jr. Conservation, Nature Club, Stone Mountain
  • 40 Owens Landscape Critics Trophy, GALDA
  • 41 Johnson Conservation Education, The Garden Club of Georgia for PATE involvement and Institute
  • 44 Civic Development Medal, Association of 22 Garden Clubs, Atlanta; and Flower Show Awards
  • 5A Sequoyah Garden Club, Calhoun
  • 5A Daffodil Garden Club, Cedartown
  • 17 Federated Garden Clubs of Rome
  • 18 Gainesville Garden Club Council
  • 22 DeKalb Federation of Garden Clubs, Decatur
  • 35 Green Acres, Erin, Dublin & Shamrock Garden Clubs Dublin
The 19 national awards won in 1975 were:
  • 2A Fisher Garden Centers, Thomasville Garden Clubs, Inc.
  • 2B Fisher Garden Centers, Fulton County Federation of Garden Clubs
  • 7 A White Ribbon, The Garden Club of Georgia for Pavilion Gardens
  • 7B White Ribbon, Peachtree Garden Club, Atlanta
  • 16(B2) Yearbooks, Sequoyah Garden Club, Calhoun
  • 23 Bronze Seal, The Garden Club of Georgia for "Never Never Land of Poisonous Plants"
  • 27D Radio-TV, Oleander District
  • 29 Blue Star, The Garden Club of Georgia for the most successful program
  • 34 Plant Society, Georgia, American Camellia Society
  • 37 Presidential Citation, Mrs. George W. Ray
  • 42 Bird Trophy, The Garden Club of Georgia for bluebird project; and Flower Show Awards
  • 5A Dunwoody Garden Club
  • 5A Pine Needle Garden Club, Augusta
  • 5B Imaganif Garden Club, Atlanta
  • 17A Sequoyah Garden Club, Calhoun
  • 17B Les Chateaux Garden Club, Stone Mountain
  • 18 Federated Garden Clubs of Macon
  • 30 Redbud District
  • 35 Cherokee Rose and Chattooga Garden Clubs, Summerville

The theme for the administration "Not without Art, but yet to Nature be True," was carried out in all phases of garden club work.


Mrs. Haskell Venard

The administration of Mrs. Haskell Venard (Ann), Atlanta, included the memorable Bicentennial period. The record breaking 1976 Atlanta Convention, "So Proudly We Hail" had 940 registrants. Two federation nominees were chosen as "Georgia's Historic Mothers 1776-1976."

The Savannah Historic Horticultural Seminar featured William Bartram. Notable Liberty tree plantings were at the Governor's Mansion and the University of Georgia Botanical Garden where seven District Plant Collections were dedicated on October 30, 1975.

"Georgia Day" at the Bicentennial International Flower Show was impressive. Nearly 900 Bicentennial compotes were sold. Cherokee Rose ornaments were sent for the White House Bicentennial Christmas Tree. The major Bicentennial project was republication of Garden History of Georgia 1733-1933.

Special honors included the Governor's Award in the Arts for Conservation and Civic Beautification, Conservation Organization of the Year Award from Georgia Wildlife Federation, and National Garden Therapy Chairman's Valentine Award for greatest expression of love and kindness.

Georgia hosted the 1977 Deep South Region Convention in Savannah with a delightful coastal tour. Other highlights were 52 new clubs; two Symposiums attracting 645; a remarkable Wildflower Project; two awards luncheons; scholarships of $8,000.00 financed by engagement calendar sales; the Hubert Bond Owens Scholarship created; Calendar Arranger of the Year named for the first time; state sponsored Flower Show School completed; two Landscape Design Study courses Series VII; "Gems from Georgia Kitchens" republished; World Gardening contributions of more than $8,600.00; two award winning P.A.T.E. Institutes; tours to Spain, England and Mexico; three Blue Star Markers dedicated; trustees elected for Headquarters House; and Trophy Room plans initiated.

In regional and national awards, Georgia ranked first both years. Winning twenty-two national awards each year; Georgia's first Gold Seal was received in 1976, with both Gold and Silver Seals won in 1977. Other prestigious awards included three Civic Concern Awards totaling $2,500.00 and three important medals. Each year ten flower show awards were won, setting another record.

A Georgia garden club member, Mrs. Rosalynn Carter, became the nation's First Lady. Fourteen members had the unique experience of decorating the White House for the Inauguration.

The 1977 convention, "Opening Gateways" at lovely Callaway Gardens had 808 registrants. Highly significant was the vote to accept the LeConte-Woodmanston Plantation, Georgia's second project in the American Land Trust program. Thus, members met "The Challenge of the Third Century."


Mrs. Clarke W. Duncan

"Brighten Your Corner" was the theme of Mrs. Clarke W. Duncan (Sue), Buena Vista, for The Golden Anniversary celebration of The Garden Club of Georgia, Inc. Yellow blossoms were planted throughout the state; Golden Galas resulted in many exciting celebrations. Contributions established an endowment fund exceeding $39,000.00. A green and white scarf depicting details from the cornice in the room where the first garden club was formed and the boxwood garden of Founders Memorial Garden was dedicated to National Council.

Trustees were appointed and plans made to study the past and future of LeConte-Woodmanston Plantation. A trophy room was constructed at State Headquarters. Calendar sales and contributions resulted in $10,500.00 for scholarships. A nonprofit mailing permit was secured for Garden Gateways and full color covers enhanced the magazine. Perpetual funding for the Department of Transportation Wildflower Awards was obtained and these were named "The Virginia Hand Callaway Awards."

Georgia continued to lead the nation in number of awards earned: 23 in 1978 and 28 in 1979. These included Dr. Glenn Burton, Gold Seal; Dr. Lewis Lipps, Silver Seal; and Miss Martha Ann Tudor, National Council Speech Contest. The Garden Club of Georgia GUIDE won recognition for the tenth edition. Eighteen members decorated the White House for the visit of the Chinese Vice Premier. Five Blue Star Markers were placed and two Gardening Study Courses were the first in the nation. Two World Gardening projects were implemented and a two room school was constructed in Honduras and named for the state president. A fifty year history was sent to the printer, a portfolio of presidential photographs was begun and a collection of Cargill flowers was framed. Our second state flower show opened the 51st convention and the 1981 National Convention was invited to meet in Atlanta. A former member was appointed to the U.S. Council on Environmental Quality and a State Board member was a winner in "Keep America Beautiful" competition.

Mrs. Carroll O. Griffin, Deep South Regional Director, was our guest for our fiftieth convention and Mrs. William J. Hedley, National President, was present at our fifty-first annual meeting. Surely no state has a larger wealth of golden memories of its anniversary celebration than Georgia. Built upon our heritage many challenges were met and The Garden Club of Georgia faces a future bright in strength and progress.


Mrs. R. Arthur Bell

The theme, "Focus on the Future" chosen by Mrs. R. Arthur Bell (Rozelle), Cairo, inspired outstanding achievements. Acres for Wildlife totaled 154,428 acres subscribed. The 1980 calendar, "Hitherto and Henceforth" and the 1981 calendar, "Dates and Designs" first in all color, netted $12,404.71 for scholarships.

In 1980 and 1981, Georgia won 22 National awards each year. The 1979 State Flower Show, The Fifty Year History, the all color Garden Gateways, and the GUIDE received National awards. The project, Plant an Energy Tree (adopted by the Deep South Region), and P.A.T.E. resulted in the planting of 16,000 dogwood seedlings on Arbor Day 1980 and 1981.

The archaeological survey was completed at the LeConte-Woodmanston project. A grant of $25,000.00 from D.N.R. was matched by the $25,000.00 grant from the Coastal Highway District. Other projects, including sale of hybrid azaleas provided $9,343.19. A contract for a master plan included a feasibility study. The UGA Botanical Garden received $12,860.37 with $7,500.00 through a grant from the Governor. A plan was drawn for a composite garden to replace the District Gardens. Six Flower Show Schools, four Symposiums, three Landscape Design Courses and three Gardening Study Courses were held. The first Gardening Consultants Council was organized May 14, 1981.

Georgians attended the HANDS Workshop in Norfolk, Virginia, EE Conference at Hawks Nest, West Virginia, and Triple E Conference at Durham, New Hampshire. One day workshops were held throughout Georgia and the first standard workshop was conducted at Rock Eagle, September 9-11, 1980.

Individuals supported such legislation as: Ga. Senate Bill 501, billboard control; H.R. Bill 115 signed April 17, 1981 providing for a State Bird Day (second Tuesday in October) and a State Wildflower Week (fourth week in March); a proclamation making April 19-25, 1981, Garden Week in Georgia, signed by the Governor, April 16, 1981. New State Life members totaled 63, and 33 National Life Members were added. State Headquarters received a new patio entrance in memory of Ernestine Blitch.

Wildflower luncheons were held in Plains and Rome. The Virginia Hand Callaway Awards were given. Three Georgia Bell kitchens were built and three deep wells dug in the Philippines. Garden clubs gave $7,819.13 for these World Gardening projects. Seven Blue Star Markers were placed. "Exhibition 50" on September 11-13, 1980 in Washington D.C. commemorating NCSGC's 50th birthday, was attended by 13 members. Exhibits were made for the National Cathedral and Organization of American States Building. First Lady Rosalynn Carter entertained the group "Exhibition 50" in the White House.

Three conventions were held: "Georgia, Forever Beautiful" April 8-10, 1980, Jekyll Island, attended by 750; 1981 National Convention, "Earth's Panorama" April 19-22, Atlanta, with 1,518 attending, and "Focus on the Future" May 14-15, Atlanta, with 560 attending.


Mrs. T. Edward Clyatt

"Together We Grow" the theme for the administration of Mrs. T. Edward Clyatt (Jean), Atlanta, challenged members to initiate new projects, concepts and procedures.

An Investment Committee was appointed to make decisions on the best investments for the designated funds, which increased resources for projects. A $100,000.00 Endowment Fund for Headquarters House was established. Plantings throughout the state celebrated the 90th anniversary of The Ladies' Garden Club of Athens. Generous contributions were made to World Gardening and Garden Therapy. Six Bartram Trail, three Blue Star Memorial and three byway markers were dedicated. A smooth transition from five to four issues of Garden Gateways was accomplished. Mrs. Francis Fink, National President, attended the Leadership Development Workshop and the Legislative Advocacy Seminar. An Historic Horticulture Seminar celebrating the 250th Anniversary of the founding of Georgia was co-sponsored with GALDA.

Magnolia and Laurel Districts hosted state conventions. Georgia hosted the 1983 Deep South Convention in Atlanta. Five Deep South awards were won in both 1982 and 1983. In 1982, Georgia won 19 National awards and in 1983, 22 awards. The defeat of Senate Bill No. 513, which allowed cutting of trees on state right-of-ways was another milestone reached. A garden for the Handicapped Committee was appointed resulting in a list of existing gardens which would be of interest to handicapped citizens.

As The Garden Club of Georgia developed during this term, so did its projects, interests, plans, and commitments. The goal was reached for "Together We Have Grown."


Mrs. Guy H. Northcutt, Jr.

"Something for Everyone" was a theme that served well during the administration of Mrs. Guy H. Northcutt, Jr. (Marvina), Marietta. Districts reached their Silver Anniversaries in 1984. Each district wrote a 25 year history.

A "Georgia Member Services Catalog" was offered. Basic Design Courses were launched. Twenty five sponsoring groups held courses with 905 students attending. A Flower Show School Series was completed in Statesboro and another series started in Atlanta. Landscape Design, Series XII, was held in Macon; Gardening Study Courses Series VI was held in Valdosta and Statesboro. The 18th and 19th annual Symposiums were held in Athens. A new format was adopted for the Environmental Education program. Three workshops were sponsored.

Garden Gateways continued its award winning reputation. Eight color covers added to its beauty. The 1984 Summer Issue celebrated its Fiftieth Anniversary.

World Gardening donations totaled $10,708.21. Garden Therapy donations totaled $13,213.28. A total of 12,476 Christmas socks were mailed. Seventy-eight State Life Members and 19 National Life Members were added. Traveling Tours realized a profit of $3,315.00.

The Georgia Daffodil Society and the Georgia Iris Society became new affiliate members. Tompkins Inn, a Historic Landmark near Eatonton, was deeded to the Eatonton-Putnam County Historical Society. An Archives Committee catalogued historical information. Records were placed at the University of Georgia library. Blue Star Markers were dedicated at Lawrenceville and Stone Mountain. A byway marker was placed in Rome. Two Bartram Trail Markers were dedicated. Garden Week, beginning with the first Sunday of June each year, was officially established in Georgia by the 1985 General Assembly.

The 10th (Tifton) and 11th (Duluth) annual Highway Wildflower Awards Luncheons were held. The first Operation Wildflower Workshop, "Wildflower World" was held at Callaway Gardens with 87 in attendance.

The office kitchen complex at State Headquarters was remodeled. A new copy machine was added and a computer study initiated. A rare book collection was begun. A plaque dedication was held September 19, 1984 to honor the contributions of Jennie Tate Anderson.

A new cookbook "Christmas Gems" was published, with proceeds to pay for garden related projects for the handicapped. A pamphlet "Accessible Georgia" listing handicapped accessible sites in Georgia was published.

The Georgia Engagement Calendar was successful. Two National Scholarships were won. Scholarships awarded for two years totaled $24,750.00. The Brown Thrasher Endowment Scholarship Fund was established containing $17,100.00.

In 1984, six major and four special Deep South Awards were won. In 1985, three major and six special Deep South Awards were won. Georgia won more awards in National competition than any other state federation.

Other activities included a Legislative Advocacy Workshop-LAW 84; $3,486.05 collected for the landscaping program of the Carter Library; The Garden Club of Georgia became a Charter Member of the State Botanical Garden of Georgia; Hubert Bond Owens honored with a Charter Membership in the State Botanical Garden and a bench in Founders Memorial Garden; establishment of a State Board personnel file; a Convention Directive was written; written Guidelines for the Wildflower Contest, D.O.T. Wildflower Luncheon and Scholarship Committee; Bylaws revised; $1,679.11, including $397.81 from juniors, donated for Statue of Liberty restoration; 28 visibility signs ordered; revised P.A.T.E. books made available; entries placed in "Cosmos 85" National Flower Show in Nashville.


Mrs. Van B. Bennett

The theme of Mrs. Van B. Bennett (Sybil), Valdosta, "Now Is the Time" emphasized youth activities, the environment and conservation.

Environmental Education Workshops for High School Gardeners were held at Callaway Gardens in 1985 and 1986. The First Environmental Education Workshop for Junior Gardeners was held at Rock Eagle Center. Two workshops for members focused on conservation, nature study, and hazardous waste. The videotape "KEEP IT CLEAN" filmed by VSC personnel was completed and included in the curriculum for Georgia public schools.

The Bird Conservation Project sold over 75,000 decals with a donation to the Audubon Society Wildlife Rescue Operation. At the Annual Wildflower Awards Luncheon, the D.O.T. received $500.00 and $1,500.00 awards won at National Convention in 1985 and 1986. The GCG and D.O.T. cooperated in planting trees in the Oak Grove Cemetery in Americus, crepe myrtles over the state, and oleanders in the eastern part of the state.

A Celebration Auction held during 1987 convention raised $35,000.00 for LeConte-Woodmanston restoration.

Scholarships totaling $19,900.00 were awarded 18 students, and a UGA student received a National Scholarship.

Funds from the sale of the first edition of "Christmas Gems" made possible donations to the Academy of the Blind in Macon, the Meriwether Garden at Roosevelt Rehabilitation Institute in Warm Springs, and the Garden Therapy Program.

National Council's emphasis on educational programs was supported by seven Flower Show School Courses, three Series of Flower Show Schools, 48 Basic Design Courses, four Landscape Design Courses, two Garden Study Courses, and two Flower Show Symposiums.

One of the six byway markers placed by Camellia District won a National Council Award; one was placed by Magnolia District and two Bartram Trail Markers were placed.

Deep South Regional Director Marilyn Carlton was our honored guest at Convention in Callaway Gardens, and National Council President Mrs. John N. Fehrer honored us at Convention in Savannah.

At DSR Convention, GCG won seven awards and had a regional first place winner in the National Essay Contest. Awards won at DSR Convention in 1987 were Hubert B. Owens School Grounds Improvement, Landscape Design, and Adopt-A-Park.

Georgia memorialized the Challenger Astronauts by planting holly trees at the State Botanical Garden. Contributions to the State Botanical Garden as memorials or honoraria totaled $3,735.00. GCG supported production of a videotape about Dean Emeritus Hubert B. Owens.

Contributions to World Gardening exceeded $11,000.00, and $3,094.00 went to Belize through GROWTH.

GCG participated in reprinting A Guide to Significant and Historic Gardens of America by Mrs. George Ray and Dean Robert Nichols and donated to the Statue of Liberty Renovation.

Board members provided elegant flower arrangements for the dedication of the Carter Presidential Center.

Headquarters House kitchen dependency was repaired and renovated as the "Patio Kitchen", and the bathroom was made accessible to the handicapped.

GCG was top winner in both 1986 and 1987 at National Convention with 21 awards at the former and 41 awards at the latter, plus Presidential Citations for Mrs. John W. Cherry and Mrs. George W. Ray.


Mrs. Charles O. Smith

With the leadership of Mrs. Charles O. Smith (Deen Day), Duluth, GCG made a "Commitment to Excellence."

The federation completed two videos. "Keep It Clean" an anti-litter and recycling film produced for elementary school children, was accompanied by a training curriculum for teachers. National Council endorsed the project and made it a pilot program for other states.

"The Growing Connection in Therapy" on horticulture therapy was produced by the Georgia Center for Continuing Education with $34,000.00 from the Christmas Gems account.

An awards incentive program, Parks and Public Lands Enhancement, encouraged state parks personnel to use wildflowers and native plants in beautification and conservation efforts. The project was patterned after the successful Virginia Hand Callaway Roadside Development Program.

A major cleanup campaign, "Georgia, Don't Mess Up a Good Thing" was launched, with 60,000 litter bags placed in Georgia Welcome Centers and 100,000 bumper stickers and 10,000 brochures distributed.

The Tiger Swallowtail became the state butterfly on April 4, 1988.

A statewide conference and three regional workshops were conducted on groundwater protection. Five conservation environmental workshops were held.

The first edition of Christmas Gems provided funding for two projects for the handicapped which were dedicated.

Georgia's Academy for the Blind in Macon received $3,500.00 and the Meriwether Garden at Warm Springs $10,000.00.

A diamond jubilee, Celebration Sixty, was observed throughout 1988, climaxing with a Gala Tea at State Headquarters on June 8, the founding date of GCG.

The Federation contributed $22,000.00 for the Shade Garden at the State Botanical Garden, which was dedicated on the same date.

Garden clubs donated $7,259.10 for Garden Therapy at Central State Hospital. World Gardening contributions totaled $11,128.50.

Scholarships totaled $24,000.00 for the two year period. The Cherokee Rose Scholarship was started from Seeds of Inspiration proceeds.

An increase in Junior and Intermediate Gardeners occurred with a 2,823 membership reported. There were 103 new State Life Members and 38 National Life Members.

Over 19,000 trees were planted. Trees honoring the signers of the United States Constitution were planted at the Carter Presidential Center and the State Botanical Garden.

The following markers were dedicated: four Bartram Trails, one Blue Star Highway and two byways.

State Convention themes were "Innovation '88" in Atlanta and "Down by the Riverside" in Augusta. Georgia hosted the Deep South Convention, "Insight on Nature's Medley."

Emphasis was placed on publications. Three publications were printed: The Sixty Year History (1928-1988), Special Trees of Georgia, and Seeds of Inspiration. Work was completed on Historic Indian Trails and Gardens of Georgia. Membership and Endangered Plants brochures were printed. Five thousand Christmas Gems cookbooks were reprinted. The Georgia Engagement Calendars were printed: Commitment to Excellence (1988) and Georgia's Best (1989).

Georgia was number one in National Council awards. A Baldwin, Georgia student won the National Speech Contest and a Winder student won the Smokey Bear Woodsy Owl Poster Contest. Cash awards totaled $9,150.00. The litter program, "Georgia, Don't Mess up a Good Thing" and the Youth Environmental Education Program received National Council Bronze Seals. Dr. Samuel B. Jones received the Silver Seal. Georgia tied for the most Deep South awards in 1988, but won top honors in 1989.

Georgia's garden club members made a "Commitment to Excellence" and excelled in all phases of garden club work.


Mrs. E. Carl White

"Make a Difference" was the challenge given by Mrs. E. Carl White (Peggy), Cartersville. Emphasis was on youth with two Junior Workshops held at Rock Eagle and a High School Gardener's Environmental Workshop held at Roosevelt State Park. A new program, "Garden Earth" was introduced involving students, teachers, and garden club members in an outdoor classroom concept. Bird Count in Georgia was published and provided to fifth graders in all public schools in Georgia. Over $33,000 in scholarships was awarded.

The first environmental Legislative Statement was sent to legislators, members of the Governor's Blue Ribbon Commission on Solid Waste Management, and all clubs in the federation. Two workshops were held on Solid Waste Management, one as part of a National Council project, and one directed to city and county officials with over 500 in attendance. A grant from Georgia Power funded a booklet, "Hazardous Household Products" compiled by the State Environmental Education Chairman.

Two legislative workshops were held in Macon and Atlanta with eight high school students attending the Atlanta conference. Legislative Day at the state capitol was held to observe firsthand the legislative process; over 5,000 letters were written, and three hearings and public meetings attended in postponement of the policy to cut trees in front of billboards.

"Fun with Flowers" workshops for club members were initiated. A basic design book "At Home with Flowers" was published and accepted by National Council to be placed on the required reading list for Flower Show Schools, a first for any state publication. Two workshops were held as part of the Deep South project.

"Grandmother's Garden" and a T-shirt depicting heirloom flowers were printed. Two Wildflower Workshops were held. A wildflower scarf, designed by Sarah Towery, was added as a Ways and Means item; 157 cans of wildflower seeds were given for state distribution; and 4,000 wildflower posters were given to fourth grade students across the state. A wildflower T-shirt was printed in cooperation with State Parks Department, with proceeds going to plantings at state parks.

The first Hortitherapy Workshop, co-sponsored with the UGA Continuing Education Center and the State Botanical Garden, was attended by therapists and garden club members. A "Birdberry Trail" at Will-O-Way Area of Yargo State Park in Winder was developed.

Donations were made to the Friendship Garden at National Arboretum in Washington and Hugo Restoration in South Carolina; a fourth State Flower Show was held in Columbus; the Serpentine Garden at State Headquarters was dedicated to The Ladies Garden Club, Athens, in celebration of their 100th birthday, and a scholarship, Founders Memorial Scholarship, was named in their honor. A new computer system was placed at State Headquarters; three Blue Star markers and one Bartram Trail marker were dedicated; a silver trophy honoring Mrs. Guy H. Northcutt, Jr., former president, was given for a Deep South Wildflower Award; traveling tours went to New York, Williamsburg and the Philadelphia Flower Show.

Twelve Deep South awards were won in 1990 and 36 in 1991; 38 National awards were won in 1990, including the Silver Seal and Bronze Seal, and 34 in 1990 including the Bronze Seal.


Mrs. Robert E. Gibson

Mrs. Robert E. Gibson (Sylvia), Athens, chose to emphasize teamwork and consensus with the theme "Together We Can."

Board Briefs, a state board newsletter, was instituted in 1991. The membership list and its maintenance were transferred to Headquarters House, allowing both membership printouts and labels for Gateways to be produced in-house. The first dues increase in 14 years was passed, effective 1993. The Investment Committee was expanded, with three elected members added.

Numerous educational opportunities were provided including Flower Show School in Tifton, Gardening Study Courses in Pooler and Bellmere; and a complete Landscape Design Course at Callanwolde. Outstanding symposia for Flower Show Judges were held in June in Athens. A symposium for Landscape Design Critics was also held in 1991, a first. Basic Design courses continued with over 60 units being offered. "Fun with Flowers" was expanded with the addition of a southern team.

Three Wildflower Seminars were sponsored. Awards luncheons for both Parks and Public Lands personnel and crews from the Department of Transportation featured speakers on wildflowers. A Georgia group also attended the 10th anniversary celebration of the National Wildflower Research Center.

Participation in the DSR Unified Regional Project, "Tough Plants for Tough Times" tied in closely with the GCG's emphasis on wildflowers and native plants.

GCG continued to campaign to deter tree trimming on public right-of-ways for better visibility of billboards on private land.

In 1992, 14 Deep South awards were won, and 19 certificates were presented in 1993, with 11 first place winners. At National Convention in 1992, "At Home with Flowers" won a Bronze Seal for GCG, along with 20 other awards. Georgia did well in 1993, winning both Silver and a Bronze Seal, over $3500 in wildflower awards, $800 in civic development grants, the Kellogg Medal for Special Achievement, and fielding the High School Speech winner.

Two successful tours were planned: Floriade, England and Wales in 1992, and Costa Rica in 1993.

Sales of the engagement calendar provided scholarships for 11 students. A total of $17,750 was awarded in 1991. Grants totaled $16,000 for the 1992-93 academic year.

The conventions were highlights of the administration. "Discovery" in Columbus was hosted by Magnolia District. The National President, Mrs. James C. Dawson, was the honored guest. Macon and Camellia District entertained "Spectacular Spectrum." The honored guest was Deep South Director, Mrs. Noel Cumbaa.

Blue Star Markers were installed in Pooler, Statesboro and Callanwolde.

In Athens, the shade garden arbor, a gift of GCG, was dedicated at the State Botanical Garden. The Ladies Garden Club climaxed their 100th anniversary year by planting a time capsule in the front courtyard of Headquarters House. The State Botanical Garden celebrated its 25th anniversary when the GCG hosted a gala silver tea. The $1500 raised was presented as the GCG's anniversary gift, with part of this gift used to erect a Bartram marker in that part of the Bartram Trail located within the Garden.

GCG cooperated with other organizations to promote common goals: Garden Earth, an environmental education program with the State Botanical Garden; an introductory reception for DNR's video, "Road to Extinction"; "Pathways of Gold" to develop appropriate participation in the 1996 Olympic Games; and continued support of LeConte-Woodmanston after deeding the property to its own Board of Trustees.


Mrs. George E. Waters

Mrs. George E. Waters (Carolyn), Chamblee, theme "Realize the Challenge" provided a two-fold goal for 16,299 garden club members comprising 578 garden clubs, 45 councils, and 31 Junior/Intermediate clubs with 1,978 members.

An increase in membership was reported by 424 clubs with ten new clubs added. Grand Gardeners Club status was initiated.

Two environmental workshops were held. "The Living Earth" Environmental Studies School was introduced in 1995.

NCSGC/Shell Oil Company grants totaling $2,100 were received through the new PETALS incentive program. The development of a "Community Wildlife Project" was undertaken in cooperation with the Georgia Department of Natural Resources.

Three Blue Star markers were installed. A total of $2,535 was donated for Botanical Gardens, $1,837.50 for State Headquarters operation and maintenance, and $7,265 supported World Gardening.

"Patron of Scholarship" was established resulting in $2,800 for the Brown Thrasher Scholarship Fund. A total of $28,250 enabled 13 scholarships to be awarded. Three Georgians won $4,000 NCSGC Advanced Scholarships.

Garden Therapy projects at Central State Hospital included a $5,000 donation to help with landscaping at the Medical-Surgical Building, 11,965 Christmas socks with $6,781.65 and additional donations of $6,164.85 from clubs. GCG contributed $4,000 for a wheelchair accessible greenhouse at Southwestern State Hospital in Thomasville.

To commemorate the February 24, 1947 incorporation of The Garden Club of Georgia, a ceremony was held in Rome.

A new series of Basic Horticulture courses was developed. A Wildflower Symposium was held in November, 1993 in Perry. A second was presented in September, 1994 in Griffin.

Plans for a new State Headquarters on the grounds of the State Botanical Garden of Georgia, Athens were begun. A fund raising campaign, T-R-E-E-MENDOUS CHALLENGE, was initiated.

Three series in Gardening Study Courses were held in Kingsland, Plains, and Atlanta. A Landscape Design series was completed at Warner Robins. Two series of Flower Show Schools were held in Gainesville and Athens. Advanced Flower Show Symposiums were held in Athens, in June, 1993 and 1994. Fifty-nine Standard Flower Shows were held.

The Parks and Public Lands Awards Luncheon was hosted by Redbud District in 1993 at Bellmere, Duluth, and by Magnolia District in 1994 at Massee Lane Gardens, Marshallville. The 20th Anniversary Celebration of the Highway Wildflower Awards Luncheon was hosted by Dogwood District April, 1994 at the Carter Center. The April, 1995 Wildflower Luncheon was hosted by Laurel District at Chicopee Woods Agricultural Center in Gainesville. The Rod Smith Memorial Award was presented for the first time.

The organization voted to seek legal counsel and initiated legal action on January 30, 1995 in Fulton County Superior Court to prevent the cutting of trees on public right-of-ways.

Eight issues of Garden Gateways were published. NCSGC Publication Award 13-3A was received in 1995. The eighteenth edition of the GUIDE won NCSGC Award 13-4A in 1994. Eight issues of Board Briefs were published.

At Deep South Convention in Knoxville in 1994, 15 awards were won. In 1995, "Sights and Sounds" in Augusta welcomed Deep South attendants to Georgia. Sixteen awards were received. At the 1994 NCSGC Convention in Stamford CT, GCG received 36 awards, including the Bronze Seal and the Silver Seal. In 1995 in Dallas, Texas 38 NCSGC awards were received, including the Gold Seal and the Silver Seal. The 1994 Convention in Savannah set the theme for "Coastal Treasures" hosted by Oleander District. NCSGC President, Eleanor Yates was the honored guest. The 67th convention in 1995 hosted by Redbud District took on an Olympic flair with "Georgia's Gold" as the theme. Evelyn Isbell, incoming Deep South Regional Director, was the honored guest.


Mrs. Wilbur Jordan

"Inspired by Beauty, Care, Share, and Preserve" was the theme of Mrs. Wilbur Jordan (Helen), Reidsville. Focus was on increasing club membership, strong children's programs, and environmental and conservation issues.

The Supreme Court, on November 6, 1996, determined that the rule allowing billboard owners to pay a fee to trim or cut trees in front of signs was unconstitutional. GCG became a registered lobbying organization with the State Ethics Committee for the purpose of effecting legislation.

The Community Wildlife Project started with five communities participating in 1996 and 23 in 1997.

Georgia Historic Homes and Garden Pilgrimages were held in LaGrange and Newnan on April 20, 1996, and in Athens and Madison on April 12, 1997. Proceeds from the tours of $20,246.85 are to be used for the restoration and preservation of public, nonprofit historic gardens in Georgia.

The "Pathways of Gold" project culminated at the 1996 Centennial Olympic Games. Georgia was covered with yellow flowers, and nearly 2,900 specially designed banners were displayed. The GCG received the Olympic Force Medal of Honor from the Atlanta Committee for the Olympic Games in recognition of its contribution to the community.

The groundbreaking celebration for the new State Headquarters was held on January 22, 1997, at the State Botanical Garden. A 50 year lease, with option for renewal, was signed in February. Clubs, councils, districts and individuals donated $8,913 for landscaping. A video on the present historic headquarters house (on the National Register) was produced to preserve an important part of the GCG history. Crystal Designer, Hans Frabal, gifted GCG with the first issue of a new signed crystal sculpture "Butterfly Garden No. 1" for the new state headquarters house.

"Back to Grassroots" the President's two year project was an effort to recognize a member's residence as "Yard of the Year." Two Wildflower Symposiums were held at the State Botanical Garden January 31, 1996 and January 29, 1997. Garden Week was celebrated in June, 1995 and 1996 at Six Flags Over Georgia Theme Park. The 1995 project received the National Garden Week Award at the 1996 NCSGC Convention.

A "Networking with the Birds" seminar to support the Deep South Regional Project was held on February 22, 1996 in Macon.

A State Flower Show, "Georgia Dreams-Past, Present, and Future," was held October 10-13, 1996 at Roquemore Conference Center at the Georgia National Fairgrounds in Perry.

The Birdberry Trail at Fort Yargo State Park was dedicated September 6, 1995.

The Seal of Honor was instituted to honor non-member organizations and individuals for activities that support the ideals, goals, purposes and programs of GCG.

Scholarships were funded through the sale of the engagement calendar, "Pathways-Georgia's Pride," and interest from the Brown Thrasher fund. Four scholarships totaling $11,000 were awarded in 1995-96 and five totaling $13,200 were awarded in 1996-97. Two NCSGC Scholarships of $3,500 each were won by Georgia students for 1995-96 and one NCSGC $3,500 Scholarship for 1996-97.

The Joint Judges' Councils sponsored two Symposiums at the Continuing Education Center at UGA. The GCG has 238 judges and 66 emeritus judges. An Environmental Awareness Workshop was held in Macon on February 5, 1997. Four Landscape Design Study Courses, two Environmental Studies Schools, three Gardening Study Courses, and six Flower Show Schools were held. There were 61 flower shows throughout the seven districts. Basic Design Courses and Basic Horticulture Courses continued.

The Ninth Annual Parks and Public Lands Enhancement Awards luncheon was held on September 21, 1995, at Bellmere in Duluth, hosted by Dogwood District. The Tenth Annual Luncheon was held on September 10, 1996, at Veterans Memorial State Park in Cordele, hosted by Camellia District. The 22nd Roadside Wildflower Awards Luncheon, hosted by Oleander District, was held April 9, 1996, at Jekyll Island. The 23rd Luncheon, hosted by Azalea District, was held April 8, 1997, at Day Chapel and Conservatory at the State Botanical Garden.

GCG supported a publication of "Indian Heritage of Georgia" by Marion R. Hemperly.

GCG continued to make donations to support other organizations including $3,235 to Garden Therapy, $3,375 to World Gardening (C.A.R.E.), $5,000 to the Plant Conservation Alliance, and $500 to the Georgia College Foundation to help establish a wheelchair access nature trail at Lake Laurel near Milledgeville. Central State Hospital awarded a Certificate of Appreciation to GCG for its generous donation to the Sunshine Pavilion.

Three Blue Star Highway Markers were erected in Claxton, Richland, and at the Welcome Station in Ringgold.

Azalea District hosted the convention "River Reflection" in Augusta on April 22-24, 1996, with Mrs. John Michie, Jr., President NCSGC, as honored guest. Dogwood District hosted "On the Brink of Tomorrow" in Atlanta April 24-26, 1997. Billie Massa, Deep South Regional Director, installed new officers.

Thirteen awards were won by GCG at the DSR Convention in Orlando, Florida in 1996. Eleven awards were won at the Deep South Convention in Huntsville, Alabama in 1997. GCG won 35 awards at NCSGC Convention in Traverse City, Michigan in 1996. At the 1997 Convention in Hilton Head, South Carolina 26 awards were received. The 563 garden clubs and over 16,000 members united to make Georgia and the world a better place.


Pat Wiseman

Pat Wiseman's theme, "Let's Keep Georgia's Gold Glowing through Beautification, Conservation and Education" was inspired by the 1996 Olympics. Her administration focused on charitable, educational and scientific activities.

Milestones achieved were the historical move of The Garden Club of Georgia, Inc. State Headquarters from the campus of the University of Georgia in Athens and the preparation for National Council's 1999 convention in Atlanta.

Funds for scholarships for deserving college students were increased. In 1997-98, six academic and one work scholarships were awarded for a total of $20,700. One NCSGC Scholarship of $3,500 was awarded.

The GCG website was created and went online in April, 1998. The GCG participated in the Deep South Project, "Naturally Native." A symposium was held in Macon, February 17, 1998.

Education continued to flourish for 43 junior youth clubs, five intermediate and seven high school clubs. All junior clubs were given the paperbacks, "The Children's Kitchen Garden" and "Book of Gardening, Cooking, and Learning" by Georgeanne Brennan, et al.

The new State Headquarters, begun in 1994, was dedicated on October 6, 1998 with more than 500 GCG members attending. The newly established Archives Room contains a large collection of historical data for researching the history of the GCG.

The annual Historic Home and Garden Tour held in April, 1998 featured homes and gardens of Rome and Floyd County. More than 800 tickets were sold and $15,000 was awarded to eight winners.

Interest from the sale of Gardens of Georgia, published by the GCG in 1989, was used to give $5,000 to Callaway Gardens for the new Virginia Hand Callaway Educational Center and $10,000 to the Atlanta Botanical Garden for a gate. This allowed for an addition to the brick wall surrounding the Herb Garden. Finally, $25,000 was given to The State Botanical Garden, Athens, for a "Bittern Fountain" in the Heritage Garden.

GCG member donations to the NCSGC butterfly garden project in the National Botanical Garden, Washington, DC, totaled $42,656.29.

Efforts to save Georgia's trees threatened by outdoor advertisers were again a major issue.

A victory for conservation occurred when GCG members and citizens who had petitioned E.I. DuPont de Nemours & Company to cease mining efforts for titanium in the Okefenokee Swamp, effectively stopped the mining.

A new chairmanship was established both in GCG and NCSGC designated as Natural Disasters to aid in reforestation of a garden project following natural disasters such as hurricanes, tornados, floods or ice storms.

A first for the GCG was the formation of Discovery Garden Club for the disabled and, most importantly, the first state to declare the disabled population a part of the general membership.

Two Blue Star Memorial Markers, one on Interstate 75 North at Ringgold and the other in Screven were placed. A Blue Star Byway Marker was placed in the Floyd Plaza in Rome.

Both the Historic Home and Garden Tour and Callaway Gardens, Pine Mountain, were recognized for achievements by winning a NCSGC Award of Excellence in 1998.

At the 1998 state convention, 122 adult garden clubs, 49 youth clubs and two individual high school students in NCSGC Speech and Essay Contests received awards. At the 1998 DSR Convention at Natchez, Mississippi, GCG won 19 awards and then earned the same number of awards at the NCSGC convention in Denver.


Mrs. J. T. Row

"The Wonders of Gardening through Beautification, conservation and Education" set the theme for the administration of Mrs. J. T. Row, Jr. (Jeannine), Marietta. With 541 garden clubs, seven districts, 38 councils, four judges councils, 15 youth units and 15,038 members, GCG continued to support the goals and objectives of NCSGC and DSR.

In September 1999, the Terrace Garden located at GCG State Headquarters in Athens was dedicated to Deen Day Smith, whose generosity made the beautiful new building a reality.

GCG continued to support litigation to save Georgia's trees. The Georgia Supreme Court upheld the Superior Court's decision on the injunction to stop the Georgia DOT from cutting trees until the GCG's case is decided. An oral hearing was held on the appeal of the Georgia DOT and the outdoor advertisers in the Georgia Supreme Court in May, 2001. The Turner Foundation funded the GCG $40,000 to help with legal fees, and an anonymous corporate business contributed $6,000.

During the 2000 legislative session the GCG helped the Wildflower License Tag pass both the House and the Senate. Part of the fee for the tag is to be placed in a state Roadside Beautification Fund. Two sellout Wildflower Symposiums were co-sponsored by GCG and State Botanical Garden in Athens.

To support the DSR Project "Environmentally Yours" a seminar was held in Macon in February, 2000.

Two workshops were held in the fall and spring of 1999 and 2000 to stimulate and educate the membership on two new concepts in gardening: Gardening with the disabled and children's gardens.

A Roadside Beautification seminar was held in November, 1999 in Perry.

NCSGC schools held during this two year term were two Flower Shows, two Environmental Educations, four Garden Studies, four Landscape Designs, and three Judges Symposiums. Fifty-Eight Standard Flower Shows were held.

The new traveling youth camp program, "From the Mountains to the Sea" began during this administration. With the help of the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, 28 children (11 and 12 years old), experienced the excitement of learning beyond the classroom. The program received the prestigious Award of Excellence from NCSGC in 2001.

A 2001 membership drive was initiated during this term. Every member was asked to recruit a new member between March, 1999 and March, 2001. A membership pin was designed and those who brought in new members received pins at their annual fall district meetings. This program added 1,139 new members to the GCG's roster.

Two new categories of membership, Subscribing and Corporate, were included in the bylaws. This allowed those who wish to support the goals and objectives of the GCG but do not wish to belong to a garden club to be included in the GCG.

Supporting the NCSGC President's Project "Tree-A-Thon" the GCG raised $15,482.55 to landscape Habitat for Humanity Houses in Georgia.

During this term $38,650.77 was sent to NCSGC for the National Garden Project in Washington, DC with a grand total for this four year project of $82,162.68.

There was an increase in calendar sales during 2001 with $20,500 in scholarships awarded and $17,500 awarded in 2000. Both years Georgia received two NCSGC scholarships totaling $7,000. A high school senior, Brandon Setchel of Hartwell, received the first $1,000 scholarship offered by the DSR. To increase the potential fund for the scholarship program, the $8,000 received from NCSGC for profits from the 1999 National Convention was placed in the scholarship account. Two Historical Home and Garden Tours held in Atlanta and Columbus raised $20,009.33 for grants to fund statewide projects for physical improvement of historic landscapes and gardens.

The Highway Wildflower Luncheon hosted by Magnolia District in April, 2000 was held in Perry. In 2001, Dogwood District hosted the luncheon in Duluth. $2,575 was awarded each year to the DOT maintenance men who go above and beyond their regular duties to beautify our roadsides.

In the Parks and Public Lands Enhancement Program, state parks and public lands employees were awarded $5,000 each year to create beauty spots using native plant materials in the landscape at awards luncheons hosted by Azalea District in 1999 and Redbud in 2000. Five Blue Star Markers were installed and one rededicated during the two-year term.

A Long Range Planning Committee was established to form concrete ideas, possibilities and solutions on a long range basis as we entered a new century and millennium.

Camellia District hosted "GardernRama 2000" the GCG's annual convention in Macon. Deen Day Smith, President of the NCSGC, was the honored guest. The 2001 Convention "Gardening Unlimited" took place in Savannah. Peggy B. White, DSR Director was the honored guest and installed the officers for the GCG 2001-2003 term. Hosted by GCG, Callaway Gardens, was the site of the 2001 DSR Convention, "Garden Impressions." GCG won 45 awards at the 2000 DSR and NCSG Conventions, plus the following: PETALS totaling $4,000 and two Exxon Civic Development Awards of $500; the NCSGC Award of Excellence to Dr. Allan Armitage; Member Award of Honor for both DSR and NCSGC to Lois Groszmann; and two national scholarships. The 2001 DSR and NCSGC conventions saw GCG continue her winning ways in various areas of work including Award of Excellence for the state project "Mountains to the Sea"; one DSR Scholarship and two NCSGC scholarships; three Exxon Civic Development Awards; Deep South Essay Contest and Deep South Speech Contest and second place in NCSGC. At the close of business at the NCSGC Convention in Chicago, delegates voted to change the name of the organization to The National Garden Clubs, Inc. (NGC).


Mrs. William H. Stuart

Mrs. William H. Stuart (Joy), 39th President of The Garden Club of Georgia, Inc., launched her administration in Savannah on Good Friday, April 13, 2001, with her theme being "Celebrate the Joy of Gardening." Peggy White, DSR Director 1999-2001, installed the incoming state officers. This administration began with the name change for our national organization, National Garden Clubs, Inc.

The President's two-fold project was to increase membership and publish a new design book. A pin was offered to both sponsors and new members enrolled. GCG enrolled 2,733 new members in 550 clubs, making the total membership 14,567. The establishment of "Emeritus" status and a sterling silver pin was awarded to Board Members with 20 or more years of service on the State Board. Four members achieved this status the first year and six members the second year. The publication of a design book titled "CREATIVE FLORAL DESIGN, Step by Step" was completed after two years in the making. It was introduced at the 2003 NGC Convention in Biloxi, MS, and was available at the June, 2003, Symposium in Athens for $35.00.

An all-time national record for Blue Star Markers and By-Way Markers was achieved with sixteen (plus 2 more planned). Markers were installed, refurbished and rededicated.

The tragedy of 9/11 prompted a need for a symbol. The rose, the nation's floral emblem since 1986, was chosen to commemorate and symbol. The rose, the nation's floral emblem since 1986, was chosen to commemorate and fill this need. Georgia Governor Roy Barnes signed a Proclamation designating 2002 as the "Year of the Rose" during National Garden Week.

Seven District Meetings were held where youth winners received awards. Seven clubs received P.E.T.A.L. grants totaling $2,250.00.

GCG published a cookbook "Food, Mood and Attitude." The 2003 calendar marked the 50th anniversary issue. Sale of calendars continued to fund scholarships. Georgia students were awarded two $3,500 NGC scholarships in 2002 and again in 2003. Along with GCG scholarships, students received a total of $39,750 for the two years.

Life memberships increased in number at State (72), DSR (18) and NGC (13).

GCG listed four Flower Show Judges Councils: North, Middle, East and South with a total of 199 judges. On record were 18 Garden Club Centers, 56 Mini-Centers, 17 Garden Club Councils and 3 Plant Societies.

Garden Therapy projects were funded and supported with hundreds of Christmas, Chanukah and Easter ornaments given to patients.

Georgia's youth enrollment surpassed 5000. The NGC 2003 Essay winner of $1000 was won be Katrina Corley, Zebulon. A traveling youth environmental education camp, "From the Mountains to the Sea" completed its 4th year. During the two-year period, the camp offered 28 eleven and twelve year old boys and girls an out-of-doors hands-on experience with nature for 6 days. This program will be revamped in 2004.

The 15,000 GCG members were offered the opportunity to log on to the GCG's new website.

Four NGC courses of study were in place statewide: Landscape Design, Environmental Studies, Flower Show, and Gardening Studies. Basic Horticulture classes added a seventh course. A series of articles were in "Garden Gateways" titled "Back to Basics." Eight members received the NGC "Four Star" certificate having completed all four schools. The 37th Annual Symposium was held in Athens.

GCG members planted Freedom Trees supporting NGC President's goal to plant two million trees. Over eleven million trees were planted honoring victims and survivors of National's 9/11 project. A donation of $1,600 from Georgia members was sent to St. Louis to support the September 11 Memorial at NGC Headquarters.

GCG supported the DSR Project P.A.C.E. with a workshop held in 2002. Opposition to tree cutting along Georgia Highway rights-of-way was demonstrated along with concerns with air pollution and the privatization of water. Legislators were contacted and HB237 was defeated. GCG partnered with the Georgia Association of Broadcasters in an anti-litter campaign. Georgia legislators passed HB 1343, and 100+ members, friends and Governor and Mrs. Sonny Perdue were deputized as anti-litter watchdogs. Youth participated in a poster contest celebrating Legislative Day at the Capitol. Calendars were given to all legislators.

GCG won awards at the DSR 2002 Convention in Orlando, FL. Other significant events: Native Plant Symposium in Athens, Southern Wildflower Symposium in Tifton, DOT Awards Luncheon in Gainesville and Valdosta, Parks and Public Lands Award Luncheon in Albany and Duluth. The first Southern Garden Heritage Conference was held in Athens. GCG and DNR co-sponsored a Georgia Historic House and Garden Pilgrimage in 2001 and 2002. Five grants totaling $9,000 were presented.

The 74th Annual Convention, hosted by Dogwood District, was held in Atlanta. Smoke Rise Morning Glories Garden Club was awarded Club of the Year. Ten Georgians attended the NGC Convention Cruise. Georgia won awards for Civic Development, Publications ("GUIDE", "Board Briefs", and "Food, Mood, and Attitude"), and eight non-competitive flower show awards. GCG were awarded the "2002 Distinguished Conservationist of the Year." Georgia again won the most awards at the DSR Convention in Orange Beach, AL.

The Georgia Conservancy honored the GCG with their most prestigious award as the "2002 Distinguished Conservationist of the Year" the first organization to be so recognized.

The Sixth State Standard Flower Show was held at Callaway Gardens.

The 75th (Diamond Jubilee) Convention was held in Augusta, hosted by the Azalea District. A commemorative Halcyon Days Box was unveiled at the convention. The 2003 NGC Convention was held in Biloxi, MS. GCG "scored" with two Awards of Excellence, and an award for its 2-year membership development campaign. Winning publications were "Garden Gateways", "Board Briefs", and the Calendar.

National Garden Week won first place and $100; eleven NGC top award certificates and rosettes for Standard Flower Shows; and three NGC Publicity Press Book Awards were won. The DSR's Emerald Award Certificate of Merit for Unified Regional Activity was also won by GCG.


Jaydee Atkins Ager

The Garden Club of Georgia's 40th State President, Jaydee Atkins Ager,of Kathleen, selected Georgia on My Mind as the overall theme for her comprehensive administration. President Ager chose to target improved communication efficiency through the use of electronic communication; promoted dedication to community service; emphasized environmental education; pursued financial development from outside sources; and improved business management practices for the organization.

Utilizing remaining funds from GCG Headquarters construction, a new woodland walk was installed, adjacent to the building. With unique nighttime lighting, this restful addition to the grounds, benefited from native plant landscaping installed in the fall. The State Board of Directors honored President Ager by contributing to a fund designated for the landscaping. President Ager also contributed to this purpose, as her gift in honor of the service of the State Board of Directors.

To celebrate the occasion of the 75th Anniversary, a Diamond Celebration Tea was held on the special date of June 8, 2003, exactly 75 years after the founding of this organization. Those attending received a commissioned engraved "diamond" memento. Special guests included Governor George Sonny Perdue, and Former Governor and First Lady Joe Frank Harris. Governor Sonny Perdue was the keynote speaker, saying, "While I am here today to celebrate with you, and to congratulate the Garden Club on reaching this Diamond Celebration milestone, my most important purpose - on behalf of the people of Georgia - is to say thank you."

Believing it incumbent upon a conservation organization to reduce consumption, the administration pursued a campaign to replace conventional paper communication with "electronic communication." Listservs, hosted by The University of Georgia (UGA) were established for each of the seven districts, the State Board of Directors, and member clubs. This enabled districts to send their district newsletters via the listservs, resulting in significant financial savings. All clubs were asked to establish an "e-secretary" so that this individual could receive all communication, and distribute it to the members. Districts and clubs were encouraged to conduct all their communication via the internet. Board Briefs was converted to an electronic format and sent via e-mail with distribution of the publication doubled in less than two years. GCG State Board members had the opportunity to participate in two different computer skills workshops, at the UGA Continuing Education Center Computer Labs. The administration continued efforts to improve and expand the GCG website. Web pages were added for each district.

An ambitious project was a community based watershed protection program, known as FLOW~, an acronym for Forging Leadership in our Watersheds. Its purpose was to "restore and preserve the ecological balance of our watersheds throughout Georgia, balanced with economic prosperity and community well-being." FLOW~ grants were offered to garden clubs which sponsored workshops, cleanups, and watershed restoration in their local communities.

The organization launched an effort to inspire, organize, inform, and educate its members on legislation and other matters of policy. A four person Legislative and Governmental Affairs Team was created, and a very successful legislative and governmental affairs seminar was held. While there, the organization was honored with a resolution in both the Senate and the House, for its dedicated mission advocacy and service to the state of Georgia. The next, Wearing of the Green, was during the Legislative Session, in conjunction with the State Flower Show at the Capitol.

A four-part program, Planting 4 People, established a commitment to meaningful community service. Plant 4 Schools emphasized school grounds improvement projects, with a focus on utilizing blooming trees. Plant 4 Humanity focused on landscaping of Habitat for Humanity homes being built in Georgia. Plant 4 Hope sought to provide beauty at domestic violence shelters, child sex abuse resource centers, Ronald McDonald Houses, and other institutions where people are in crisis and in need of hope. Plant 4 A Cure had two worthy goals. For a $36 donation, one dozen daffodil bulbs (10,000 total) were planted at The State Botanical Garden of Georgia in Athens, and, a portion of the $36 was utilized to help provide financial resources for breast cancer patients for women in need of wigs, scarves, prosthesis, or mastectomy supplies.

An original film was produced, with an anti-litter message aimed at an 8-10 year old audience. Georgia! Keep it Green and Clean, and an accompanying workbook titled, Litter Lessons, were distributed free of charge to every public, private, and military school in Georgia (1,775 schools). Over one million Georgians viewed it in its first year of distribution.

To promote conservation and education, the Bag Lady Project, and the Compost Happens project were launched. With grant money, 2,500 tote bags were purchased and sold. The multi-purpose Bag Lady bags were intended to replace the "paper or plastic" conundrum while grocery shopping. In addition, 1,000 compost bins were purchased and sold at cost.

A much-needed revision of the President's Primer was completed, and the new booklet was titled, "Stepping Stones for Success." The purpose of this "how to" manual was to aid club officers on the how, what, when, and where procedures for garden club meetings, objectives, and projects. The booklet was distributed at the seven district Club Officer Workshops.

Improved business management practices were pursued in a variety of ways: merchandising and inventory procedures were strengthened, and a comprehensive inventory of all books and other wares were produced and maintained. Insurance for the organization was studied in depth, with the help of a consulting professional. Liability insurance was increased and an appraisal of fine arts of Headquarters was completed.

Scholarship fundraising benefited from the sale of "Creative Design - Step by Step", the sale of calendars, life memberships, and through contributions. Scholarships were awarded for the 2005-2006 academic year.

National Garden Week was supported each year, with Georgia winning the "best in the country" promotion award both years at the NGC Conventions.

An important source of revenue for the General Fund treasury was merchandising sales for the two year administration. It went up substantially.

The organization assisted in the purchase of an electric scooter for use at The State Botanical Garden, so the disabled or elderly would be able to visit the garden.

An opportunity for this organization to develop a closer alliance with The Southeastern Flower Show was pursued and resulted in many benefits: a booth at the Show in 2004 and 2005, promote awareness of our organization, and promote membership opportunities.

Board of Directors meetings were held in Tifton at The Cloister at Sea Island, The Capitol City Club in Atlanta, Brasstown Valley Resort in Young Harris, the Wyndham Hotel in Atlanta, and at Callaway Gardens Inn. The Board was invited to a lovely dinner at The Georgia Governor's Mansion with Governor and First Lady Perdue. The State Board meetings were altered to utilize electronic technology. Meeting minutes were also distributed via the listserv. State Board meetings offered training, service, and educational opportunities.

The Parks and Public Lands Program continued its support for incentive awards for our state parks, historic sites, and public lands beautification and conservation efforts focusing on utilizing native plantings. Cash recognition awards were offered at the annual awards luncheon. The 2003 awards luncheon was held at The Retreat Lodge at Veteran's State Park in Cordele. The 2004 luncheon was canceled because of the remnants of Hurricane Ivan.

The program between the Georgia Department of Transportation and The Garden Club of Georgia, and The Highway Wildflower Awards Program celebrated 30 years of beauty for Georgia. At the request of GDOT, the longstanding April awards luncheon was canceled. Garden Club representatives will attend seven GDOT annual fall meetings. Cason Callaway, Jr., provided the "Virginia Hand Callaway Awards." These cash incentive awards along with plaques were presented to the winning GDOT competitors. A $5,000 grant was awarded to GDOT for the seven Districts to purchase wildflower seeds for roadside beautification.

The Historic Home and Garden Pilgrimage Tour was a joint effort in 2003 with the Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation and the Hay House in Macon. The 2004 Tour was held in Covington and Newton County. Proceeds from the Tour support the Historic Garden Grant Program. The GCG Historic Landscape Initiative continued with workshops held in Milledgeville and Newnan. The Garden Club voted to gift all past and future historic landscape preservation records to The Cherokee Garden Library at The Atlanta History Center. A six person Historic Preservation Advisory Council was formed to ensure continuity and support for projects under the historic preservation.

Two educational Flower Show Judges Symposiums were held in June at UGA. A Landscape Design School was held in Columbus. Four Basic Horticulture Courses were undertaken in four Districts. Flower Show Schools were held in Rome and Tifton. A successful Environmental Studies School was held. Two continuing education "tri-freshers" for Landscape, Garden, and Environmental Consultants were held. Native plant seminars were held in Tifton. The State Botanical Garden in Athens was the site of a native plant seminar. Eight outstanding issues of Garden Gateways were produced. Two beautiful engagement calendars were published and sold, providing funding for GCG scholarships. Ten Blue Star markers were placed.

Membership development was emphasized during this administration. A three-person team represented North, Middle, and South Georgia. Membership development brochures were revised and reprinted with the theme, A Peach of an Opportunity. Appealing displays promoting membership were created. Life memberships were actively sought.

The Garden Club was recognized by The Garden Club of America for outstanding conservation leadership. Georgia won the most awards at the Deep South Region Conventions. Georgia won the most awards at the National Conventions.

Youth garden clubs were important. To train members, two outstanding youth summits were held in Macon. Motivational speakers provided enthusiastic attendees with a call to action. Georgia young people excelled.

The State Convention, "Garden Glitter", was hosted by Redbud District and held in Atlanta. NGC President, June Wood, a native Georgian, was the honored guest. At the Awards Banquet, the Garden Club's highest honor, The Certificate of Merit was presented to E. Lanier Finch of The Georgia Association of Broadcasters; Dorothy Olson, Director of The Georgia Capitol Museum; John A. Sibley, III, President of The Georgia Conservancy; and to conservationists Charles A. (deceased) and Celestia B. Smithgall. The 2005 State Convention was held at Callaway Gardens and was hosted by Magnolia District. Beauty Beckons was the theme chosen, and the DSR Director, Bonnie Borne, of MS, attended as the honored guest and installed the officers for the next administration. Certificates of Merit were presented to: Nancy and Cason Callaway for roadside beautification advocacy; to environmental educator Diane L. Davies; The Environmental Education Alliance of Georgia and conservationist Chuck Leavell. The 2004 and 2005 GCG State Conventions saw many changes. Board Chairs reports were replaced with exhibits in a display room. Much information was posted electronically. The 2004 DSR Convention was held in Baton Rouge, LA and the 2005 DSR Convention was held in Tunica, MS.

The Joy Walker Stuart Conservation Fund was created by Dr. William H. Stuart in honor of a former president.

The seventh State Flower Show was held in 2005 at the State Capitol. The theme of the show was Georgia on My Mind - Under the Gold Dome. The show was held during the 2005 Georgia General Assembly session, and was viewed by thousands. Georgia's First Lady, Mary Perdue, served as the Honorary Chair.


Dollie T. Harper

The installation of Dollie T. Harper, 41st President of The Garden Club of Georgia, Inc., concluded the Life Membership Luncheon at the annual convention 21 April 2005 at Callaway Gardens. Deep South Region Director Bonnie Borne used an impressive candlelight theme as a metaphor corresponding with the District Directors' and Officers' jobs.

When introducing "Challenges and Changes" as an approach for the 2005-2007 years' objectives, four programs were outlined: Create a Ripple, an educational program for youth emphasizing the conservation and protection of water as a component of the FLOW project; Mountains to the Sea will continue with Phase II, a virtual tour of the state available at our website also focuses on youth; a newly established series of ten lessons, Landscaping for Fun, will be offered; an outreach program, Pull a Tab for Ronald McDonald, by collecting aluminum tabs will be promoted in all the districts.

The president pledged continued support to the many long-established efforts of the state, region, and national organizations and introduced two new ones. Kids Count, the Deep South Region unified project will involve a workshop at the September 2006 board meeting. All club presidents, all district board members involved with youth, and state board members are to be included. The National Garden Club President's project, Patriotic Trees will have a designated state chairman with corresponding district chairmen.

The process of accomplishing this agenda was expedited through the well-planned quarterly meetings of the State Board held six times at various locations. The tradition of Fall District Meetings continued; all with interesting, informative, educational, diverse, and fun activities. These fourteen days were most pleasant and well attended events.

Within the state organization, communications were effectively maintained through the quarterly publication, Garden Gateways sent to every member. A supplemental and timelier notice, Board Briefs, is sent to state board members, club and council presidents via e-mail with only one hundred eighty copies being sent by the U. S. Postal Service. A secure website maintained through University of Georgia has proved vital in providing notices of conventions, workshops, and other events with registration forms readily available such as Club and Council, Presidents' Report forms, youth club registration forms and applications for youth standard of excellence, plus detailed information guide, "What to Send Where."

Participants in Club Officer Workshops included new club presidents, district and state officers and chairmen and were held for all the districts at the beginning of the administration.

Following an in depth review and report the Garden Therapy program was revitalized. Clubs continue to support state regional hospitals with decorated felt Christmas socks and Easter eggs, clothing and monetary donations. All clubs are encouraged to sponsor projects at local facilities.

Beginning March 2007, membership dues will be sent to State Headquarters for more efficient management and record keeping. This is a change for the fourth vice president. The master list for Garden Gateways will continue to be maintained at Headquarters.

There were numerous other challenges and changes at State Headquarters. The Administrative Associate resigned; the job posted and a search began. A new Administrative Associate was employed April 2006. The phone system updated; a new copier, a new computer, and laptop purchased; internet service enhanced for faster access; audio and projection equipment for the Terrace Room upgraded and added to facilitate better workshop and lecture presentations; exterior lighting enhanced and security cameras installed at the Terrace Room exits. All interior upstairs rooms and the Garden Room received a fresh coat of paint for the first time since the building was completed. Minor repairs to the furnishings were addressed and completed.

A sincere and beneficial working relationship continued with the State Botanical Garden particularly regarding Headquarters House, the rental of the Terrace Room, hiring the Administrative Associate, and co-sponsoring activities such as the Native Plants Symposiums.

With patriotism utmost in members' hearts, Blue Star Marker and Byway projects were numerous with twenty-one markers purchased and installed; one was moved and re-landscaped. These ceremonies were well attended and appreciated in cities and small towns.

Natural disasters also touched members' hearts with three thousand dollars remitted to NGC. They responded generously to the "Greening of Gulf Coast" appeal contributing over eight thousand dollars with another $2,800 donated to Sumter County Federation of Garden Clubs to help in restoration following a tornado.

The thirty-plus years association with Georgia Department of Transportation continues by recognizing employees for their efforts to beautify the state at each DOT District awards program.

A workshop focused on participation in the employee award program and how to prepare books of evidence was held 13 September 2006 in Griffin. Clubs also support roadside beautification through donations and are recognized for this. As a corollary symposiums on native plants and wildflowers have been held through the years. Two were held in North Georgia and two in South Georgia this term.

Another awards program recognizing employees at the Department of Natural Resources for work at state parks and public lands continues. Two programs were held - one in Oleander District 15 September 2005 and one in Azalea District 21 September 2006.

The two Historic House and Garden Pilgrimages provided resources linking the organization and the DNR Historic Preservation Division. Grants from the 7 May 2005 tour of Barnesville and Lamar County and the 22 April 2006 tour in Dalton totaled $17,000 were presented eleven gardens for restoration projects. A newly established program, Partners and Patrons of Preservation yielded contributions of $6,067 for the Historic Landscape Initiative sponsored by the Atlanta History Center. Individuals, who worked in these efforts, were recognized by the UGA School of Environmental Design with honorary memberships in Sigma Pi Kappa.

Participation of every district in the Patriotic Tree project resulted in 3,697 plantings and numerous special ceremonies held. These were registered and NGC certificates applied for each year.

Nineteen Habitats for Humanity homes were landscaped with an estimated value of $12,594.82 for materials and plants purchased and donated. The Walk-a-Thon at NGC 2006 convention totaled $2,339.00 in donations.

The organization's strong commitment to education continued with opportunities in four NGC school programs and three programs that Georgia has expanded. Two NGC accredited Flower Show Schools were completed and one planned for September 2007. Two symposiums for flower show judges were held in Athens. Six series of Basic Design I were held and four are on-going. Basic Design II has been a most successful addition with courses completed in Atlanta and series planned for Gainesville and Marietta. Three involved Judges Councils support these efforts and assure Georgia maintains high quality flower shows and judging standards.

Landscape Design Series XVII was sponsored and completed in Dogwood District. The Consultants Council creates interest, maintaining standards and participating in civic development projects across the state. A new how-to course, Landscaping for Fun, was introduced this term and has been well received.

Garden Study Courses were co-sponsored by Dogwood and Redbud Districts the last class of Series XVII was complete 26-27 September 2005 in Griffin. Series XVIII co-sponsored by Camellia and Magnolia Districts will be completed 4-5 September 2007. This Consultants Council keeps members up-to-date on improved methods of cultivation and new plant introductions and provides instructors and resource information for the Basic Horticulture program.

The Environmental Studies School becomes more applicable daily. A series co-sponsored by Azalea and Redbud Districts was completed May 2007 in Athens. This growing Consultants Council keeps informed of many challenges and works to effect positive changes.

The membership continues to persevere in the commitment of education with scholarships. Through the sale of calendars, donations and the newly subscribed, Named Scholarship Fund eighty-one thousand dollars was collected this term. There was an NGC scholarship winner and alternate winner in 2006, and two winners in 2007.

State Life Membership monies are divided between scholarships and the Headquarters House Endowment Fund. Ten thousand six hundred dollars were realized over two years. Ten Deep South Region and sixteen National Life Membership applications were received and forwarded.

Through a Georgia Power Foundation grant, matching $200.00 grants were approved for forty-seven civic improvement projects.

Eleven projects were approved through the NGC and Principal Financial Group grant project, "Let Freedom Ring" for $9,500 total.

Achievements in several projects unique to Georgia were made. The video, "GEORGIA! Keep it Green and Clean" was re-edited and the videos delivered to the Sheriffs' Association, Georgia State Patrol, and Chiefs of Police for their use in meetings. These will also be shown at the Georgia Welcome Centers.

Participation in the Southeastern Flower Show continued with GCG offering an award for the best exhibit in the Discovery Division that exemplifies our mission statement of Beautification, Conservation and Education. This medal was presented for the first time at "The French Experience", the February 2007 show.

For many years members have supported other projects exclusive to Georgia with their time and contributions. These are Georgia's first National Natural Landmark, Marshall Forest, in Rome; LeConte-Woodmanston in historic Liberty County; and botanical gardens and arboreta throughout the state. When it was learned the Mary Brown Pavilion at Central State Hospital needed a new roof members rallied to "Raise the Roof for Dollie Harper" contributing $10,766.00 for this.

A delegation proudly represented Georgia on 29 September 2006 at the dedication of the New National Garden on the Mall in Washington D.C. This ceremony was of special interest as members had followed the progress of the Butterfly Garden after purchasing Christmas ornaments, Lenox anniversary plates, and bluestone granite pavers to help fund the project.

Robust projects and youth activities provided many opportunities for award applications. Georgia was very successful in Deep South Awards March 2006 with a Member of Honor Award and numerous club and youth awards award. Efforts recognized by NGC in 2006 were: Award of Excellence 24 for the Legislative Advocacy team's work; State Standard Flower Show Award 11, "Georgia Under the Gold Dome"; National Garden Week Award 53; Roadside Award 71; and High Speech Contest; numerous poster and poetry awards for the youth; eleven Principal Financial Fund grants; and twenty- two club and individual awards.

Two very inspiring and well attended conventions were held. At Kaleidoscope II hosted by Laurel District, in Atlanta, 19 - 21 April 2006 attendees participated in workshops on Habitat for Humanity, innovative flower show entries, and governmental affairs; reflected on interesting displays; scrutinized award entries; enjoyed informative speakers at meal functions. National Garden Clubs, Inc. President Kitty Larkin was honored guest and Awards Dinner speaker. A change sorrowfully accepted at each convention is the memorial service. The loss of former President (1993-1995) Carolyn Waters was acknowledged when her family had a miniature yellow rose named in her honor.

At "Garden Jazz" hosted by Camellia District in Macon, 18-20 April 2007, offered a tour historic of homes and buildings and outstanding speakers at each event. Annette Stanbery, Deep South Region Director, was honored guest and installed Officers and District Directors for 2007-2009 term.

Delegations represented Georgia at the 2006 Deep South convention in Chattanooga. Georgia was host to the 4-7 March 2007 convention, "Wet and Wild", in Atlanta where seventeen clubs won awards and Georgia won the Deep South Life Membership Award.

At the national convention, "Pathways to Sunshine" in Orlando, 22-27 May 2006 Georgia was well represented. This president concluded her official duty when accepting Georgia's awards at the national convention, "Boston and Beyond", 25-27 May 2007. These included the following; Horticultural Achievement Award 4, Kathryn Litton, Blairsville; Junior Garden Club Award 10-A; Publications 13A,"Garden Gateways"; Bird Protection Award 42; World Gardening Award 46; Environmental Education Award 54; Major Non-standard Flower Show Award 56; Website Award 63; Civic Projects with Native Plants Award 73 and $1000.00 for Parks and Public Lands projects and award programs for over twenty years and three $500.00 award to clubs for projects with native plants; Five Standard Flower Show Achievement Awards; High School Speech Contest, Chris O'Connell, Sandy Springs; High School Essay Contest, Caroline Oates, Athens; numerous youth poetry and poster contests awards.

With this briefly edited review of events of The Garden Club of Georgia, Inc. in the years of 2005-2007, it is apparent many "Challenges" were recognized and many "Changes" accepted.


Sara Lanier

Sara Lanier, St. Simons Island, was installed as the 42nd President of The Garden Club of Georgia, Inc. at the Seventy-Ninth Annual Convention in Macon, April 20, 2007. She chose the theme, "Pick Up and Grow", encompassing GCG's mission to promote "Beautification, Education and Conservation" for the 2007-2009 administration.

President Lanier was the first GCG president to serve as Chair of the Awards Committee while currently serving as president. There were many visits to local garden club meetings, 80th Anniversary Celebrations, installation of officers, and an unprecedented 22 Blue Star Marker Dedications. There was a new Trail of Tears Memorial dedication in 2007.

The Litter Team worked on ways to Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle as a way of life. Letters written to county officials regarding the unsightly green dumpsters off Georgia's State and Federal highways requested them to either remove the dumpsters, or improve the sites. Bumper stickers with "Don't Litter" were printed and distributed at the 2008 Convention in Savannah, and at District Meetings. Thomasville Garden Club, Inc. won the 2008 litter contest with a literal model dressed in "trash" with a message, and Blairsville Jr. Garden Club and Trowel Garden Club, Thomaston won the 2009 contest.

The Membership contest, "Celebrate 80" held in 2007-2009 resulted in all seven Districts increasing their membership. Over 4,000 membership brochures were placed in the eleven Georgia Visitor's Centers. GCG promoted National Garden Clubs Membership contest for the honor of naming a canna cultivar for the state with the greatest increase in membership. Presently GCG has 12,282 members, 7 Districts, and 427 clubs. NGC's contest ended May 31, 2009. The winner was announced at their Fall Board meeting. The publisher, First Book, placed complimentary information about GCG in their newly published Newcomer's Handbook for Atlanta released April 2009.

The Scholarship goal of $100,000, reached in this administration, awarded $55,600 to Georgia students in 2007 and $44,600 to Georgia students in 2008. In 2008, GCG received a National Garden Club Scholarship of $3,500, and in 2009 GCG received two NGC scholarships for $4,000 each, making a total awarded to Georgia students $111,700 in scholarships.

Civic Improvement grants, "Community on My Mind", were given to thirty-five applicants for a total of $7,000. A local garden club's $200 for a project that benefits the community is matched by the "Community on My Mind" grant of $200.

The Historic House and Garden Pilgrimage, co-hosted by The Garden Club of Georgia, Inc. and the Department of Natural Resources Historic Preservation division supports the restoration and preservation of Georgia's non-profit historic landscapes and gardens, and funding the Historic Garden Grants. In 2007, Oleander District hosted the Pilgrimage in Midway, GA that included the LeConte-Woodmanston Plantation. GCG members support LeConte-Woodmanston Conservation Project through donations, and the tour raised $1,012. Dogwood District hosted the tour in Carroll County in 2008 with a "Hidden Gardens Gala" kicking off the 80th GCG celebration. Twelve historic sites and homes of Carroll County were featured, yielding a profit of $4,841. The 2009 Fourteenth Annual Historic House and Garden Pilgrimage, hosted by Burkeland Garden Club, was held May 2 in Waynesboro, a town recently named to the Register of Historic Places in east Georgia.

Historic Garden Grants awarded $7,000 for the restoration of historic non-profit landscapes and gardens in Georgia to Hanover Square, Glynn County, Olmstead Garden, Muscogee County, and William Harris Homestead, Walton County in 2007. In 2008, grant monies of $5,750 were distributed among Cannonball House, Macon, Massee Lane Gardens, Fort Valley, Old Putnam Jail, Eatonton, and New Park Cemetery in Fort Gaines. In 2009, the Historic Macon Foundation received a grant for $2,882 for the Sidney Lanier Cottage, and $3,000 was awarded to the City of Savannah to assist with restoration of the Washington Avenue medians.

The Historic Landscape Initiative received a Merit Award, accepted by Mabel Milner representing GCG from the Georgia Chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects in 2008. Georgia landscape architects created the ASLA Professional Awards program to recognize excellence and outstanding examples of landscape architecture.

Dogwood District erected the only Historic Marker in Oakland Cemetery in Atlanta. The dedication August 25, 2008 was held at the gates of Oakland Cemetery.

The Garden Club of Georgia, Inc. members supported LeConte-Woodmanston Conservation Project through donations totaling $4,780. In July 2008, a groundbreaking ceremony was a Memorial Walk around the botanical gardens, a tribute to the slaves who cared for Louis LeConte's gardens and plantation. A plant inventory of the site has been compiled with the specific location of each plant, and an inventory of native trees.

In 2008, donations to Garden Therapy made it possible for GCG to distribute $12,031 to the hospitals. For 2009, donations of $11,602 made it possible to allocate $11,245 to the hospitals. An individual donated $1,000 to the Fig Leaf Project at Central State Hospital.

In 2008, the Principal Financial Group awarded a $750 grant to Green Thumb Garden Club, Thomaston; Lullwater Garden Club, Atlanta, $350; Magnolia Garden Club, Tifton, $350; Hoe'n in Euharlee, Euharlee, $200; Town and Country Garden Club, Macon, $250, and Azalea Garden Club, Millen, $100.

The Garden Club of Georgia, Inc. Ways and Means total sales for May 1, 2007 to April 30, 2008 was $16,838.93, and sales for the partial year May 1, 2008 to March 31, 2009 amounted to $8,830.23.

Two Conservation Workshops, the first one, "Think Globally, Act Locally" was held in South Georgia at Lake Blackshear, Cordele, in 2007. The second workshop, "Nurture Nature" in 2008, was held at the Georgia Baptist Conference Center on Lake Louise, Toccoa. Professionals and leaders from across the state were speakers for the workshops.

In 2007, a statewide Youth Team Training was held at GCG Headquarters for all District Youth Chairmen and new members of GCG Board of Directors. There are 42 youth clubs, double the clubs in 2007. Laurel has 10, Azalea 7, Oleander 7, Camellia 3, Magnolia 4, Dogwood 1, and Redbud 10 clubs. In 2008, a youth camp, "Wild and Wonderful Experience Camp" for fifth and sixth graders, co-sponsored by Charlie Elliott Wildlife Center in Mansfield had 18 campers for this unique learning experience. The Smokey Bear and Woodsy Owl Poster contest brought in over 5,000 posters for the 2008-2009 school years. The Youth Awards entered for 2007-2008 competition was eight Books of Evidence and one yearbook. For the 2009 award year, 17 Books of Evidence were entered. There were 13 essay entries in 2008 for the state contest, and 20 entries in 2009.

This organization participated in National Garden Clubs President's School Garden Project, "Plant Natives-Plant Organically." Winners announced at the 2008 NGC Convention were Garden Club of Ellijay, Laurel District, who received $100 for the best Deep South Region NGC President's School Garden Project for their outstanding project at North Georgia Christian Academy, and $50 awarded to six clubs that received Notable School Garden Awards.

The Gardening Study, Landscape Design and Environmental Study Consultants Spring, 2007 Tri-Refresher was held in Savannah at the Bamboo Farms and the Armstrong State University Arboretum. The fall 2007 Georgia Tri-Refresher was held in Milledgeville. The 2008 Spring Tri-Refresher was held in Augusta at the Sacred Heart Church Garden Festival, and the 2008 Fall Tri-Refresher was held at the Highland Biological Foundation, Highland, NC.

Club Officer's Workshops were held in all seven Districts with 342 club officers attending. At the August 2007 orientation for the Executive Board and the District Directors at Central State Hospital, there was an Art and Flower Show. The 25 active garden clubs within CSH participated in the show, and GCG members judged the show.

The Garden Club of Georgia, Inc. held their Eighth Advanced Standard Flower Show at Pebble Hill Plantation in Thomasville, February 20-21, 2009. The theme, "Southern Charm Among the Pines", rightly named, was an outstanding show. Over 2,000 people strolled through the huge tent set up on the grounds of the Plantation. The Seal of Honor was presented to Pebble Hill Plantation in recognition of their participation in helping to make the show possible. Sue White, Assistant General Manager accepted the award. After the show, the Thomasville Garden Club, Inc. celebrated Arbor Day with the planting of an oak tree, a seedling grown from an acorn from the Historic Oak Tree in Thomasville.

Two Calendars were published during the 2007-2009 term. In 2008, GCG introduced the small pocket size calendar in addition to the regular size calendar, and changed the name of the calendar to "Expressions."

All seven Districts celebrated their Fiftieth Anniversary. The historian in each District wrote their fifty-year history, and the GCG Historian is having a book of their history printed for each of them.

The Twenty-first Annual Parks and Public Lands Luncheon, hosted by Redbud District, September 20, 2007 met at Bellmere Garden House in Duluth. The parks had 18 entries that applied for awards.

GCG's Roadside Beautification Chairmen traveled to the Georgia Department of Transportation's seven Districts to attend the Employee Appreciation Day program and to present awards to the winners of Georgia's beautiful roadsides. Thirty Thousand daffodils planted in 2007-2008, and 175 acres of wildflowers planted. In the spring of 2009, 210,000 more daffodils energized the landscape along the highways. Garden club members donated $5,010 to this project.

In this administration, the "Virginia Hand Callaway Awards" gave cash awards of $8,000 to the winning Georgia Department of Transportation competitors for their wildflower beauty spot throughout Georgia.

This organization is pleased to have fifteen Plant Societies as members of GCG during the 2007-2009 administration.

National Garden Clubs' Walk-A-Thon at the 2008 Convention in Memphis, TN to benefit Habitat For Humanity enabled Georgia walkers to raise $2,842, and the Walk-A-Thon at the 2009 NGC Convention in Houston, TX collected $1,241 that will be used for landscaping Habitat For Humanity houses.

Garden Gateways, GCG's official publication, completed eight issues in this administration. The printing quantity is 12,750, and each issue has "Inside Your Garden Gate" by Kathryn Litton, "Living on the Edge" by Z Ganaway, and an article from Callaway Gardens. The issues include photos of club members and their activities, Calendar of Events that lists Callaway Gardens, State Botanical Garden, and What's Coming Up. Board Briefs is also published quarterly and sent to the GCG Board of Directors and club presidents and is available on the GCG website. Barbara Bourque redesigned the GCG website for the first time in ten years. District newsletters are posted along with their calendar, information on what is going on in GCG and forms that can be filled in and printed.

Oleander District hosted the Eightieth Annual GCG Convention, "Ladies on the River" in the hotel by the Savannah River, April 15-17, 2008. National Garden Club President, Barbara May, was the honored guest and speaker at the Awards Banquet. Barbara May presented to GCG a certificate of congratulations on GCG's 80th Anniversary. A Certificate of Merit was presented to Savannah College of Art and Design-Civic Beautification and Historic Preservation; David C. Varnadoe, Conservation Horticulturist at the Joseph W. Jones Ecological Research Center at Ichauway and Savannah Area Council of Garden Clubs, Headquarters and Botanical Gardens Education and Restoration.

Dogwood District hosted the Eighty-first Annual GCG Convention, "Nature's Palette" at the JW Marriott Hotel in Atlanta. The Designers Club staged a Standard Flower Show on the premises in honor of President Elect Betty Grimes and Past Presidents Deen Day Sanders, Jeannine Row and Joy Stuart of The Designers Club. Deep South Region Director, Mary Summerville, was the honored guest and speaker at the Awards Banquet; also, she installed the 2009-2011 officers. The Certificate of Merit was presented to Sheldon Fleming, Founder and Executive Director, Wonderland Gardens, Decatur and to the Historic Oakland Foundation. Executive Director David S. Moore accepted this honor.

This organization sponsored the Youth Division at the Southeastern Flower Show in 2008. The theme, "Imagination Celebration" was designed to have exciting events for younger gardeners and their family.

GCG Board of Directors meetings were held at Amicalola Falls, Jekyll Island, GA, Savannah, GA, Dublin, GA, Thomasville, GA, and Atlanta, GA. All seven Districts held their Fall Meetings in 2007, and again in 2008.

GCG participated in the "Dollars for Scholars" 2007-2009, Regional Director's Project, and won the Deep South Life Membership Award for first place.

The project that all seven districts graciously participated in is Pull and Save a Tab for Ronald McDonald houses. The goal was to collect 1,000 pounds of tab tops, and that goal was met with 1,023 pounds.

The Forty-second Annual Judges Symposium for Flower Show Judges was held in Athens, June 24-26, 2007, and the Forty-third Annual Judges Symposium for Flower Show Judges convened June 29-30 through July 1, 2008 in Athens. Magnolia District sponsored a Flower Show School and completed four courses in this administration. On the required reading list for the Flower Show School is the new book Designing by Types published in 2008. Instructors and designers from across the country gathered at Bellmere Garden House in Duluth to create and have their designs photographed. Many GCG members' designs appear in this book. There are 116 Accredited Master Judges, 7 Accredited Life Judges and 36 Accredited Judges in Georgia for a total of 159 Judges and 32 Student Judges.

This organization sponsored Basic Design Courses I and II. In 2007-2008 in Basic Design I, there were 78 classes taught, and 17 courses finished. In Basic Design II, there were 10 courses taught and 80 people attended. In all, 976 people attended the classes. Twenty-six Basic Design I and II instructors live in Georgia.

The North Georgia Council of Flower Show Judges had National Garden Club Master Flower Show Judge Tony Todesco speak to a capacity crowd, October 2, 2007 at Bellmere Garden House in Duluth. He demonstrated the concept and motivation for new designs in the latest Handbook.

Two Native Plant and Wildflower Symposiums were held at the University of Georgia Tifton Campus, March 26, 2008 and March 25, 2009, and the Native Plant Symposiums held at GCG Headquarters in Athens were January 23, 2008 and January 21, 2009.

In April 2008, the Landscape Design Consultants Council presented Award 29 to the Merryweather Garden Club of Clarksville, GA for their courthouse landscape project, and in April 2009, the Council presented the award to Magnolia Garden Club, Tifton, for their gardening project featuring low maintenance and drought resistant native plants at the University of Georgia Campus Conference Center.

National Garden Clubs presented the Landscape Design Educational Award trophy to GCG at the National Convention in Memphis, Tennessee. This award is presented to the most comprehensive and effective program of education in Landscape Design. The trophy is on display at Headquarters.

GCG continues to be the top winner of awards at Deep South conventions and National Garden Clubs conventions. The 2008 Deep South Region Convention was held in Pensacola, Florida, their theme was "Going Coastal." The 2009 Deep South Convention was held in Huntsville, Alabama, the theme was "Botanical Blast." The National Garden Clubs Convention held in 2008 in Memphis, Tennessee, had as their theme "Making Music in Memphis", and in 2009 in Houston, Texas, the theme was "Blooming Magic Texas Style."

The Garden Club of Georgia, Inc. was very visible at the legislative sessions at the Capitol in Atlanta. Through the efforts of the Legislation and Governmental Affairs Chair, and many garden club members wearing green, it was a major accomplishment for the third consecutive year that there was no billboard legislation passed in the Georgia Legislature.

There was work completed on the State Headquarters in this administration. New carpet installed in the Terrace Room, and on the Terrace level, the hardwood floors were refinished. For the first time, the inside of the house was completely repainted, and a section of the roof replaced. There are 175 new chairs for the Terrace Room. Repairs were made on three chairs, the door on the Neel Reid cabinet, the buffet in the Terrace Room repaired, and the boardroom table. A grand piano donated to the house is located in the Terrace Room. The Headquarters Office Procedure Manual was updated. New computers were installed; new Adobe In design software program installed; all computer programs and information updated in the data base; a new telephone system installed; 4 interior audio cameras installed, and fiber optic wires installed that will reduce internet cost per month. New security cameras were installed in the upstairs entrances. New docents were trained for conducting tours.

The Garden Gateways mailing list was updated. A new club registration form was designed, and sent electronically for the first time. Another first was advertising in the Athens Magazine offering available rental of the Headquarters Terrace Room, and general good public relations.

April 2008, the Southern Garden History Society toured the Founders Garden and the State Headquarters. There were 150 attendees. GCG docents explained the history of GCG and the house museum interiors.

The dedication of the old "smokehouse" at the Founders Garden was held January 29, 2009. The Ladies' Garden Club of Athens renovated the old "smokehouse" that now is known as the Founders Memorial Room. It is a collection of memorabilia and pictures of the twelve ladies that started the first garden club in America. The College of Environment and Design presented GCG a certificate of participation in the dedication for the Founders Memorial Room 70th Anniversary.


Betty Grimes

Betty Grimes, Hiawassee, 43rd President of The Garden Club of Georgia, Inc. was installed at the 81st Annual Convention of The Garden Club of Georgia, Inc., April 14-16, 2009 at JW Marriott Hotel, Atlanta. Her theme, "Flourish Our Future," focused on National Garden Clubs, Deep South Region and GCG's educational opportunities for a membership of 12,307 in seven districts and 415 garden clubs in Georgia.

A Flower Show School, held in Millen, completed four courses with thirty-three students attending course one, thirty-one students attended course two, twenty-six students attended course three, and twenty-five attended course four. From this school, there are currently thirteen new National Garden Clubs Accredited Flower Show Judges.

Landscape Design School completed four courses with 31 attending and nine new full consultants. There were four courses of Environmental Studies School held at Griffin, GA, sponsored by Redbud District, with average attendance of 21 students per class.

The Gardening Study School offered three Tri-Refreshers, one at Ebenezer Retreat Center in Rincon, hosted by Oleander District. Also, a Tri-Refresher was held during the NGC Convention in Atlanta with 106 attendees. Their venue included the Atlanta Botanical Garden, Atlanta History Center and the Georgia Aquarium. GCG held a Conservation Workshop, "Cherishing Georgia's Coast," which was well attended.

There were two Flower Show Judges Symposiums held at the Continuing Education Conference Center at The University of Georgia. The 2010 theme was "Putting It All Together" with 110 attending and in 2011 the theme was "The New Age of Garden Clubs" with 117 attending.

During this administration there were 43 Standard Flower Shows, one Youth Flower Show, one Plant Society Flower Show, and 5 Small Standard Flower Shows. Fifty-three Flower Show Schedules were submitted to the State Chairman. There were eight Basic Design I and II courses held with five sessions each, with 134 participants and 38 certificates issued.

GCG was honored to host the 81st Annual National Garden Clubs, Inc. Convention, "Atlanta A-Bloom," held at the Omni Hotel at CNN Center in Atlanta, May 14-16, 2010. Official registration for the convention was 865. There were eighty-one specific committee chairmen, and over 300 GCG volunteers who made the convention a grand affair. Properties for the 2011 10th World Association of Flower Arrangers (WAFA) Flower Show were loaned to the convention to provide a preview of the designs throughout the hotel. The package plan included six meal functions, and each of GCG's seven districts was responsible for creating designs for the table, also the Life Member Banquet. The youth clubs provided sixty-five designs for the Inspirational Breakfast on Sunday morning and provided welcome containers for gifts and bottled water for the attending fifty state presidents. Eight Pre-Convention tours began on May 11 that highlighted the beautiful and historical state of Georgia.

Programs presented during the meal functions were Master Gardener and TV personality Joe Lamp'l, "Through the Garden Gate." From the Flower School in London floral designer Judith Blacklock presented new designs from Europe, titled "This Glorious Earth." Georgia's own Bobbi Heenan, Master Flower Show Judge and NGC Accredited FSS Symposia Instructor, presented design styles as they were influenced by fashion, "The Way we Were." A special presentation by self-taught topiary artist and motivational speaker, Pearl Fryer, told an inspiring story of turning the ordinary plants on his three-acre lot into a topiary show.

For the VIP/Executive Board Dinner, Callanwolde Fine Arts Center was the setting for the lovely catered dinner in the elegant Candler home, originally owned by the eldest son of the founder of Coca-Cola. At the Fall 2009 NGC Board meeting in St. Louis, MO, a projected budget of $399,548 was approved along with the preliminary schedule of events. The actual income for the NGC Convention was $286,508 and expenses were $284,216, leaving a balance of $2,292 for final division. GCG received $1,052.

A first for The Garden Club of Georgia, Inc. was the decision to have a one-day Annual Meeting instead of a three-day full Convention. "Using the Past...To Build the Future" was the theme for the 2010 One-Day Meeting, held at Macon Marriott City Center Hotel in Macon on May 25. The Finance and Executive Committee (F&E) and the GCG Board of Directors met the day before. There was a business meeting the morning of May 25, followed by the Life Membership luncheon with presentation of Awards. President Grimes presented the awards that were handed out at the 2010 NGC Convention for Georgia. Seven clubs won Overall Winner Awards and seven clubs won First Place in their categories. GCG clubs won four awards and GCG Publications won 6 awards. As a state organization, GCG won eight awards, and Georgia's nominee, Laura Turner Seydel, was chosen for the National Award of Excellence in 2010 and 2011. Fifty-nine Books of Evidence were submitted for National Garden Clubs' Awards in 2011.

Deep South Region Awards presented at the One-Day Meeting in Macon in 2010 were five first-place winners, four second-place winners, five third-place winners, and four honorable mentions. The Garden Club of the Year was awarded to Ellijay Garden Club, Ellijay.

The Garden Club of Georgia, Inc.'s 83rd Convention was held at the University of Georgia Center for Continuing Education Conference Center and Hotel, Athens, on April 26-28, 2011 with 329 delegates and guests from Georgia's seven districts. Theme of the three-day convention was "The Beginning Was Here," which honored the home of the first garden club in America. It had been forty years since a GCG convention was held in Athens. Deep South Regional Director Mary Sue Colvin was an honored guest speaker and also conducted the installation ceremony for the 2011-2013 officers. An outstanding speaker was Dr. Allan Armitage whose keynote opening speech was titled, "Why I Still Garden." He led a walking tour to the Trial Garden at UGA and the State Botanical Garden. Tours to the Founders Garden, Historic Athens, and GCG Headquarters were scheduled. Diane Davies, 4H Coordinator, delivered a compelling speech on "Connecting Children with Nature."

At the 2011 GCG Convention, a workshop "Garden Week in Georgia - How will We Celebrate" fostered a proclamation signed by Governor Nathan Deal on May 30, 2011 declaring the third full week in April as Garden Week in Georgia. GCG will partner with Georgia Department of Natural Resources Historic Preservation Division, the Georgia Department of Economic Development and National Park Service Southeastern Region in efforts to preserve and promote Georgia's historic landscapes and gardens. GCG received $20,000 in grants from the Georgia Department of Economic Development for work done by GCG Historic Landscape and for support of grants awarded by the Garden Grant. Another workshop, "Flower Shows," presented information on the preparation of a Book of Evidence.

GCG continued the tradition of producing an annual Engagement Calendar, Expressions. Four thousand calendars were published each year of the term, and sold to support the GCG Scholarship Program. GCG awarded $112,000 in scholarships to college students for 2009-2011. Additionally one NGC Scholarship was awarded in 2010 for $3,500 and two NGC Scholarships were awarded in 2011 in the amount of $3,500 each. The total amount of scholarships awarded in the 2009-2011 term amounted to $122,500 to Georgia students.

The newly adopted project, Flower Show Grants, awarded four matching grants of $200 each to garden clubs that had a flower show for the first time. Clubs that had not had a flower show in five years were also eligible to receive the grant.

"Pull & Save a Tab" is an on-going project that President Grimes embraced. Members collected tab tops for the six Ronald McDonald houses, a home away from home, for the families of seriously ill or injured children receiving treatment in a nearby hospital. A total of 4,367,379 tabs were collected and delivered in 2009-2011.

"Community on My Mind" grants were awarded to twenty-seven garden club projects totaling $5,200 in 2009-2011. This matching fund grant made an impressive contribution to the community that amounted to $47,229.

Eight Blue Star Markers and one Historic Marker were installed and dedicated in 2009-2011.

This administration enthusiastically supported with leadership and donations major restoration and the rededication of Marshall Forest on September 16, 2010. This unique urban old growth forest is currently owned and managed by The Nature Conservancy in Rome. There are fifty-five different species of trees and Braille trails for the visually impaired that is open to the public.

Eight issues of Garden Gateways were published - 13,500 copies each issue. A color centerfold featuring four flower designs by Georgia designers was in each issue that was mailed to all GCG members, state presidents and emeritus members.

Modern technology played an important part in communication this term with president's reports, due notices, and registration forms sent via e-mail, approximately 85%. The postal system was used for those who did not have e-mail. GCG continues to update the website by adding more information and educational opportunities for GCG members and the public in general. This offers exposure to the mission of GCG and the advantages of becoming a garden club member.

At the 2010 NGC Convention, The Garden Club of Georgia, Inc. received an award for gaining the most new Life Memberships. For the 2009-2011 term, there was an increase of sixty-one State Life Members, nineteen Deep South Region and twenty-two NGC Life memberships.

This administration supported the Deep South Unified Project, "Protecting Our World: Living Green-Living Clean," by publishing and distributing 1000 booklets - "The Power Bees" to all members of Youth Garden Clubs and campers.

GCG has thirty-four youth clubs, reaching over 1,300 children. A first-time Youth Leadership Workshop was held. The annual three-day "Wild & Wonderful" youth camp for rising fifth and sixth graders was held in 2010 and 2011. GCG partnered with Charlie Elliott Wildlife Center for an extraordinary experience for our youth. Elementary students participated in the National Smokey Bear/Woodsy Owl Poster Contest that received national awards both years.

This administration invested in a special project, "Back to the 3 R's," in the form of a "Bulletin Board in a Bag" provided to every elementary school in Georgia. The bulletin board was designed with a major focus on "Reduce, Recycle, Reuse" to assist in the study of environmental education. The bag held everything needed to decorate an elementary school bulletin board, or a bulletin board in a public library, media center, or church. Many of the kits were delivered by garden club members. GCG has a long history of supporting environmental issues on litter and recycling.

Community Wildlife Workshops were held in 2009-2011; two in Forsyth where 104 new certificates for Backyard Habitat were issued. Four Wildflower and Native Plant Symposiums were held; two in Tifton and two in Athens. Nineteen Plant Societies are affiliated with GCG. This organization continues to support the state parks by scheduling meetings and events in the parks.

GCG partnered with the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT) in promoting the sale of the Wildflower tag. This endeavor resulted in $405,510, enabling GDOT to plant 175 acres of wildflowers statewide. There were 147,000 daffodil bulbs planted statewide. GCG donated $10,000 for planting pink poppies to bloom during the 2010 NGC Convention along major highways leading to Atlanta.

This administration adopted NGC's Penny Pines Project, a project that provides funding for the purchase of seedlings to plant in a disaster damaged area. Districts contributed $2,935 for this project. Generous members of GCG embraced the Delaware project, "Memorial Garden for the Fallen," by donating over $14,000 by clubs, councils, board of directors, and individual members. Georgia's project, "Garden Therapy," continues to support all Regional Hospitals with Christmas stockings, Easter Eggs, underwear, clothing and monetary donations.

A rare happening, the 10th World Association of Flower Arrangers (WAFA) Flower Show, was held in Boston, June 15-19, 2011. All seven districts supported WAFA with donations of over $1,000 each. Additional donations from the Board of Directors, Symposiums, and individual members were contributed to help fund this spectacular show. Georgia designers, including youth, entered designs in the show that showcased 525 designs by national and international designers.


Caroline Silcox

Caroline Silcox - History unavailable at posting.


Suzanne Wheeler

Suzanne Wheeler of Hartwell, 2013-2015 theme was "Scatter Joy as we Bloom and Grow."

NGC Schools: Flower Show Schools completed - 2; Garden Study Courses - 2; Landscape Design schools - 2 with 56 students; Tri-Refreshers - 1 for Landscape Design; Environmental School - 4; Flower Show Symposiums - 2 with 99 attending in 2013 and 91 attending in 2014.

Flower shows: 31 with schedules submitted for approval.

GCG BASIC DESINGS I & II: 124 participants in 7 classes and 9 instructors certified.

2013 CONVENTION: "Gardeners on Parade" was held April 16-18, 2013 in Marietta, Georgia. Sara Lanier, Deep South Director, installed the new board. Becky Kelley, Director of State Parks Division of DNR, was our guest speaker. F & E Board Meeting was held as well as a Memorial Service, Life Membership Luncheon, and Installation Ceremony.

WORKSHOPS: Kathyrn Moomaw of Atlanta Botanical Gardens gave a program on Container Gardening.

2014 CONVENTION: "Celebrating Southern Style" was held May 14-15, 2014 in Macon, Georgia. Program was given by Terry Johnson, Executive Director of The Environmental Resources Network (TERN). F & E Boards were held the day before convention event. A memorial ceremony was conducted to honor those that had passed during the year.

WORKSHOPS: June Harrison conducted a workshop on "How to Sponsor and Form a Youth Garden Club." She was Laurel District Youth Chairman. We had a tour of Waddell Barnes Botanical Garden in Macon.


  • 3500 Engagement Calendars, Expressions published each year. The 2013 and 2014 calendars (done in 2012 and 2013) were recipients of NGC's Publication Award for calendars, deemed to be the "Best calendar in the nation." The 2015 done for 2014 was submitted for an NGC Publication Award. The calendar program was a project to support scholarships. Total sold for two years are 5816.

  • Georgia won a national award for its scholarship brochure in 2013 and one for its outstanding scholarship program in 2014.

  • Workshops were conducted in 2013 on Officer's training and Awards. Workshops were held for all seven districts.

  • Youth Garden Clubs increased by 47% for these two years.

  • Reprinted an environmental youth work booklet, "FLOW-Create a Ripple with Willie Watershed." Held Youth Symposium in Macon in June 2013. 53 GCG members were in attendance.

  • The Wild & Wonderful Experience environmental education camp at Charlie Elliott Wildlife Center in Mansfield was held and had great participation.

  • A total of 735 posters for Smokey Bear /Woodsy Owl Poster Contest with 5 out of 7 districts participating.

  • Garden Therapy donated $4216 to state hospitals for needs. There were 4 Garden Therapy and 2 Gardens for the Challenged.

  • Received from Deep South 10 first place winners; 4 second place winners and 7 third place winners in awards.

  • We have a Blog Editor and Publisher. We have had a total of 17 postings composed and published during this time.

  • We have total contributions to Arboreta, Botanical and Memorial Gardens of $9.502.00.

  • Our BeeGap chairman has given several programs on bees during this 2013-2015.

  • We have Board Briefs, an electronic newsletter, sent quarterly to all members on the GCG listserv. The GUIDE is now on the website. The Garden Club of Georgia now has a Facebook page. No cost for publication.

  • A new project was introduced to publish quarterly issues by each of the three NGC schools; Gardening Studies, Landscape Design, and Environmental Studies and distributed by the GCG listserv to all GCG Club and Council presidents, State Board Members, and District Board Members. Those who receive it in turn send to their specific club members. The newsletter included detailed and general information relating to their specific topic.

  • Membership Committees developed a program using pins to encourage people to join. A quarterly newsletter was sent to the membership team to focus on membership issues. A program was done called, "What is this thing Called Garden Club?"

  • We had a very successful two years on reaching out to our legislature members on legislative day. More than 150 people attended the last one.

  • Community Wildlife Committee sponsored a Workshop for new District Directors and District CWP Coordinators at the DNR in 2013. Completed the design for Certified Wildlife Habitat sold approximately 200 signs to those that yards qualified. We now have 2300 yards Certified. Some 400 of these were during this past two years.

  • Roadside Beautification received donations to promote daffodils along roadsides.

  • National Disasters has contributed $2,050.00.

  • Three applications for award #33 Member Participation Program Award were sent to state chairman.

  • We have had 4 Native Plants Symposiums. Two in the Southern part and two in the northern part of the state.

  • GCG had a Diamond Jubilee Celebration for the Founders Memorial Garden in Athens.

  • For 2013, applications submitted for award #37 were 26; award #46 were 8; and award #28 were 8. For 2014, 22 for #37; 4 for #46 and 6 for #28.


  • $52,000 scholarships awarded to 17 students in 2013 and $62,000 awarded to 31 students in 2014.

  • Blue Star Memorial Marker placed all over state totaling 6 with others planned.

  • Proud of all achievements!

AWARDS: At 2013 National Convention, 7 overall winners for GCG. Two National Scholarships winners. Garden Club of Georgia 1st place winners totaled 103. Youth winners totaled 23. At the 2014 convention, Garden Club of Georgia adult 1st place winners totaled, 94 and youth winners totaled 63. The National Awards have not bee issued at this time.

DEEP SOUTH AWARDS: For 2013, winners 22 for adults and 5 youth winners. For 2014, winners 21 and youth winners total 8. GA won the Unified Project award on "Community Gardens" cash $100.00.

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