The Green Leaf Volume 11, Issue 2
Fun with Logs Have any of you parents experienced this situation? You buy your child a fancy toy and after a brief play period with the new toy, you find them pulling pots and pans out of the cabinets or playing in the box that the toy came in. Often, the best play experiences occur when children have the opportunity to explore, climb and create with simple materials. This is the basic premise behind the new play area next to the Butterfly House. The area consists mainly of large logs and stumps to walk on, climb on and crawl through and various sizes of log slices referred to as “cookies.” The cookies can be walked on, stacked, and even used to play tic-tac-toe. The main grouping of logs and stumps is arranged in a semi-circle and can be traveled from start to finish without touching the ground. The area undergoes a constant transformation because children move the lighter logs and cookies for various activities or to create tables, chairs and stools. Some of the logs came from our Beech Creek property and were dragged out of the woods by our Kubota tractor. The majority were discovered on a lot owned by Brogan Tree and Mulch, who donated the material and were happy to get rid of it. With the help of DeHoff’s Flowers-Greenhouse-Landscaping and their truck and Bobcat, the material was moved to . . . Continued on page 5.
For the Birds Notes from the Beech Creek Resource Center It may be the fall newsletter but it is time to start thinking about that next season, the winter. Butterflies are making their way south and many birds will be flocking and packing their bags as well to migrate to warmer climes. But there are those birds that hang around central Ohio all winter and backyard bird-watching becomes a winter past-time for many of us. More on page 3.
Bittersweet Visit It was the second week of the Beech Creek Visitor Center’s officially being open. Soon after the doors were open for business on this bright sunny day in early July, a threesome appeared, moving slowly up the ramp. Story continues on page 7.
Amazing Garden & Visitor Center Open Weekends Saturday 10am - 4 pm Sunday 12 - 5pm Take a look at our new Visitor Center which includes a Nature Store with handmade birdhouses, soaps, local honey, books, t-shirts, and children’s educational toys & crafts. The visitor center is also home to our Resource Library full of great books on horticulture and the environment. Come, Explore and Interact with our hands-on learning stations inside the Amazing Garden Plant Exploratorium. This unique facility is designed to be fun while learning key horticultural and environmental concepts.
Garden Symposium It is not too early to start thinking about attending our 12th Annual Garden Symposium. Save the date: February 18th, 2012. Read more - page 7.
Inside This Issue Visitor Center Opening New Members AG School Field Trips Special Visit Kids Veggie Garden Resource Library Bird in the Hand Butterfly House in Review Volunteering Holiday Shopping Garden Symposium
Pg 2 Pg 6 Pg 5 Pg 7 Pg 5 Pg 3 Pg 5 Pg 6 Pg 4 Pg 2 Pg 7
New Visitor Center Opening Successful! ~~~~~~~~~~~
Executive Director Paul Carmichael President Rich Dinko Vice President Pat Olsen Secretary Becky Lewis Treasurer John Thompson Board of Trustees Melinda Carmichael Rick Helm Connie Holmes Diane Johnson-Keller
The summer of 2011 was a huge success for the new Visitor’s Center at Beech Creek Nature Preserve. Thanks to a great team of volunteers and the funding from the Hoover Foundation of North Canton, this beautiful log home was transformed into a useful structure that was toured by thousands since July fifth. This building became the home to the new welcome center, a quaint gift shop, a well stocked resource library, educational displays that fascinated the visitors, and a very well received outdoor wildlife observation deck that was so enjoyed by all. This facility allows the non-profit Beech Creek Botanical Garden and Nature Preserve Board of Directors to continue our mission to educate people about horticulture, nature, and environmental science. Remember, you too can be a welcomed addition by volunteering as a part of this flourishing program that is a successful asset to this area of Ohio and a benefit to generations of all ages! Now that the seasons are changing, and the butterfly house is closed until July 2012, it is the board’s desire to keep the “Amazing Garden “science program and the Visitor Center open on the weekends to enhance your visit to our beautiful nature park. Our Nature Store will offer unique gifts that can be added to any of your holiday gift giving, such as beautiful books about nature, tee shirts, and hand crafted bird house and feeders that would be a welcomed present. If you are not sure of what to buy, why not purchase a gift certificate to be used in our nature store! We also offer membership gift certificates that will keep on giving all year long. It is a great way to get something that will please them, give them a wonderful experience in the grand “out doors”, and also support and preserve this amazing park by providing the funds needed to help keep it open for future generations to enjoy.
Jim Nero Craig Sonntag
So come and enjoy our nature preserve, and take advantage of what Mother Nature has to offer you and your family and friends. A cup of apple cider will be waiting on you, so hurry out for your visit soon. It will be our pleasure to welcome you and share our passion for this great facility. ~ Connie Holmes
Holiday Shopping ! Gift Certificates Available * Garden Symposium Gift Certificate Includes: All Sessions, Continental Breakfast, Hot Lunch & Garden Craft Show $53.00 (workshop is an optional class, supply fee not included) * BCBGNP Membership Gift Certificate Great presents for the nature lovers in your life! By giving a Gift Membership you help ensure that we can: continue the development, help maintain & preserve BCBGNP, and continue to provide quality environmental education programs. Member benefits include; free seasonal admission to the Butterfly House, discount on Garden Symposium, Plant Sale & Special Events, 50% off Facility Rental, Newsletters.
* Nature Store Gift Certificates ~ Let your loved one find their own treasure at our new gift shop. We have handmade birdhouses & soaps, local honey, educational books, children’s educational toys & crafts, BCBGNP t-shirts, and more.
For the Birds... Notes from the Beech Creek Resource Center Continued from front cover, With this in mind, the Resource Center in the Visitor Center will focus on Birds this fall and many books related to backyard birding, feeding the birds, etc and will be available to peruse and for purchase in the Nature Store. Let’s just take a look at a few titles that will get us prepared for our winter enjoyment and how to best set up our backyards for our winter visitors. Produced in association with the National Audubon Society, the Audubon North American Birdfeeder Guide ($14.95) covers the best ways to attract, observe, and feed birds in your own backyard. From profiles of individual species to understanding bird behavior, this new compact edition provides a wealth of knowledge in a convenient and portable format. The Backyard Bird Lover’s Ultimate How-To-Guide ($21.99) by Sally Roth. A comprehensive A-to-Z handbook for the foods and feeders, plants and projects that will guarantee a bird-friendly backyard. There are tips for both beginners and advanced birdwatchers. National Wildlife Federation Attracting Birds, Butterflies and Other Backyard Wildlife ($12.95) promotes the creation of a backyard habitat for not just birds but other wildlife as well. Covering all seasons, the book provides over a dozen step-by-step projects for families to do together, making getting back to nature easy, educational, and fun. Peterson Field Guides: Identifying and Feeding Birds ($14.95). This is a very readerfriendly guide intended for bird watchers and non-bird watchers alike—for anyone who wants to enjoy nature right in his or her own backyard. The last chapter profiles the 130 species of birds most often found at feeders. There are many other bird books available as well, Birds of Ohio, birding journals, craft books related to building bird houses and more. Might be fun to consider giving a bird-themed holiday gift to include a puzzle, book, bird t-shirt with the Beech Creek logo and a handmade birdhouse all available in the Nature Store and your purchase will benefit Beech Creek. Feeding the birds is also important at Beech Creek and the Bird-in-Hand program begins in January inviting any and all to experience the joy of hand-feeding birds. From your backyard to Beech Creek, birding is a hobby that provides endless hours of entertainment. ~ Frederica Scott, BCBGNP Media Specialist
BGA Membership Application / Volunteer Sign-Up Student $15 Patron $250
Individual $25 Benefactor $500
(Please use this form to either join, renew or volunteer)
Family $40 Friend $100 Check here for information on memorials, bequests and foundation gifts.
I am interested in Volunteer Opportunities: Butterfly House Garden / Trails Special Events Administrative Other (please specify) ______________________________________________________ Name _______________________________E-mail ___________________________________Ph __________________ Address ____________________________________City ____________________ St __________ Zip ___________
Volunteering at Beech Creek Botanical Garden & Nature Preserve As the leaves deliver their message that fall is arriving it is an appropriate time to reflect on the wonderful work done by our volunteers throughout the year. Many of our visitors to the newly opened Visitor Center this summer expressed amazement at the fact that Beech Creek is run entirely by volunteers. Of course, they are the backbone of this organization’s day-to-day operation. We could not function without them.
maintain the plants necessary to keep the butterflies healthy and happy. These volunteers would tell you that the hours they donate to Beech Creek are rewarded with the looks of amazement as the butterflies make themselves at home on the shoulders of the children and adults that visited. They are satisfied knowing that they are doing something to help create an understanding, appreciation, and respect for nature and the wildlife that shares this planet with us.
We are so fortunate to have a core group of talented men that renovated the entire log home converting it into a Visitor Center with a Reference Library, Community Room, Offices, Wildlife Observation Deck, and Gift Shop. If you have been there you know what a great job they did. They worked dependably every Tuesday and Friday to complete this project in time for our July opening. The accolades are still coming in from our visitors. Of course, there is always more work to be done and we continue to depend on these generous men to take care of all of the ongoing improvements and upkeep to the center.
The Amazing Garden volunteers assisted with helping the visitors at the individual educational stations. They maintained the numerous plants and made sure that the railroad continued its journey throughout the miniature villages and countryside scenery along its route. This is such a popular attraction with old and young alike and such a great opportunity to share information about such things as gardening, food production and hydrology,
Starting in July we depended upon volunteers to open and “work” the center selling the tickets to the Butterfly House and merchandise from the Gift shop as well as answer questions and provide information about Beech Creek. I can hardly call it work because I found it to be a wonderful way to meet people and hear great stories about their backyard gardens and wildlife sightings. Volunteers will continue to keep the Visitor Center open on weekends though the end of the year. Our dedicated “Flight Attendants” tended to the Butterfly House this summer volunteering many hours to educate our visitors and
Throughout the year there are numerous volunteers that selflessly give of their time and talents to help at Beech Creek events like The Garden Symposium, The Native Ohio Plant Day, The June Plant Sale, and The Carnation Days at Beech Creek. Their efforts are critical to the success of these ventures and the work in the community that is making Beech Creek known as a great destination. And we are certainly grateful for all of those volunteers that help to plant the numerous gardens and maintain the trails so that the public has a place to get in touch with nature and get away from their busy lives if only for the time it take to stroll along one of the trails and sit a moment to rest and experience a little solitude. We are also thankful for our Board of Trustees that tirelessly helps to make the decisions that help to guide Beech Creek in the right direction. We have certainly benefited from their wisdom that has helped us to move forward.
Volunteers enjoy their lunch on the wildlife observation deck. From L-R Bernie Schmucher, Ed Adolph, Tom Pancake & Kent State University intern Jason Stephens.
So, as we approach the month of Thanksgiving, we want to express our gratitude to all of the wonderful people that make Beech Creek a valuable asset to this community. The work that you do is greatly appreciated and you certainly should be very proud of your contributions. - Pat Olsen
Sign Up To Volunteer in the Visitor Center ! Flexible shifts, light duty, comfortable environment.
We are in need of volunteers to help us in the BC Visitor Center. Duties may include: greeting visitors, handling purchases in the Nature Store, assisting people in the Resource Library. Contact Connie Holmes at firstname.lastname@example.org
School Field Trips continue with the
Amazing Garden Science Program To date we have welcomed over 2,700 elementary school students to BCBGNP. These children are participating in our Amazing Garden Science Program. These field trips are scheduled on school days and during each school year. The Amazing Garden Science Program is designed to educate students and teachers about plant science, horticulture, environmental science and environmental stewardship. Students are excited to learn in a natural environment and to get hands-on involvement with the science les-
You can Help with this project! Students from Allen Elementary School are captivated inside the Amazing Garden.
Contact Melinda 330-829-7050 email@example.com
Fun with Logs
A Bird in the Hand
Continued from front cover,
January & February
our parking lot. Chain saws were used to sculpt the pieces into their final appearance and then the Kubota tractor was used to set them into place. It was necessary to reduce the size of a few pieces because they could not initially be moved by the Kubota, which has an 800 lb. lifting capacity. This attraction has two desirable characteristics from a construction and maintenance perspective. First, the construction cost was low because most of the materials were free. The most expensive material was the mulch for the walking surface. Second, the area is low maintenance and does not require monitoring. We do have plans to add more features to the area including educational information about trees and wood. This new Log Play Area (yet-tobe-named) is open every day, dawn to dusk. Bring the children for some outdoor nature play-time.
Students learn about animal & plant life cycles with volunteer Gloria Woronka.
Saturdays & Sundays, 12:00 - 3:00pm at
Beech Creek Botanical Garden & Nature Preserve
Try your hand at hand-feeding birds! On weekends January through February at BCBGNP you can experience the thrill of handfeeding wild birds. Volunteers will be available to coach you on attracting chickadees to feed from your hand. The bird feeding area is just across the bridge, about a quarter of a mile from the parking lot. All you need to do is show up dressed for the weather. We will provide bird seed, a fire, and a warm beverage.
Volunteers are Needed for this Program! call 330-829-7050
- Jim Nero
Children’s Vegetable Garden ‘Potager Garden’ This year marked the second growing season for our “Potager Garden”. This garden is a great project for BCBGNP and a group of children from the Stark County Child & Adolescent Behavior Health organization. These middle-school aged students are in need of mentoring and guidance. The children with their case workers plant and maintain the garden all season and then reap the rewards of the produce by sharing it with their families. This program teaches not only gardening principles but also team work, positive work ethics, self-discipline and productivity. We are very proud of these children and if you’ve visited during the summer you can see that they take pride in their Garden.
Butterfly House Season 4 ~ In Review This has been a challenging year for the Butterfly House. Disease ravaged many of the caterpillars being raised in the spring, the population of native butterflies was low, making it difficult to get some species started and a cat-bird found its way into the Butterfly House in June. In spite of all this, we were able house enough butterflies and caterpillars to delight our visitors. Inside the house, Monarchs and Cabbage Whites were the most plentiful throughout the season. Painted Ladies, Question Marks, and Hummingbird Moths also made strong showings. Many other species were present in low numbers: American Lady, Great Spangled Fritillary, Pearl Crescent, Polyphemus Moth, Cecropia Moth, Tiger Swallowtail, Spicebush Swallowtail, Black Swallowtail, Red Spotted Purple, and Viceroy. The biggest stars were the Hickory Horned Devil caterpillars which transform into the Royal Walnut Moth, also known as the Regal Moth. As their name implies, long horns adorn their “head,” giving them a devilish appearance. While they may look like the devil, it’s all show as the horns are harmless. The caterpillars start out brown in color, turn green with time and then blue-green just before they are ready to pupate. These five to six inch caterpillars then become restless and roam around on the ground where they will burrow into the dirt and form a pupa. This is where they will spend the winter, emerging next summer. It’s a different story for the IO (eye-owe) Moth caterpillars which were on display for the first time. Their stinging spines can reportedly give you a skin sensation similar to that of stinging nettles. We displayed the IO caterpillars in a glass enclosure to protect our visitors. The male IO moths are bright yellow with two large eye spots on their upper hind wings. Females have a reddish brown color. We continue to make improvements to the plant selection inside the house, removing those that under-perform and replacing them with Echinacea (coneflower), Rudbeckia (Black-eyed Susan), Pentas, Lantana, Heliopsis (false sunflower) and others that bloom well in the Butterfly House environment. A large fountain was also added this year. As in previous years, we went through thousands of cotton swabs as visitors coaxed butterflies onto the ends of the sugar water soaked swabs. It’s interesting to observe that some species are much friendlier than others. Cabbage Whites are not at all interested in feeding on a swab. A Question Mark will become your best buddy and is happy to hang out on your shoulder or hand. Monarchs are somewhere in between. The season ended on Tuesday, September 13 with the release of over 150 Monarchs. Visitors helped gather the butterflies and ID tags were placed on the wings of 100 of the Monarchs. The butterfly house exhibit would not be possible without the help of our many “Flight Attendant” volunteers who educate and guide visitors to get the most from their Butterfly House experience. We also appreciate the help of several people who brought us various species of caterpillars that were used in our display.
Thank you all!
- Jim Nero
New Members! Jennifer Anderson Lynn Baum Dorsee Bernat Melody Blomerley-Mundy Bryan Bowman Linda Branch Ron & Linda Burkett Bob & Mary Calcei John & Shirley Clark Artemus Conn & Family Kim Davis Anthony & Sarah Efremoff Anthony & Laura Esposito Paul & Lisa Ferris Richard & Joyce Fetters/Gosiewski Mary Ann Fraley Jeff & Miriam Gortney Aaron & Kathy Gray Bob & Elizabeth Harley Greg & Tamara Hole Hoover Herb Society Rick & Pam Huggett Randy & Ann Hunt Tom & Betty Indriolo Gene John Marty Jones Scott & Amy Keister David Kleim Denise Lesko Jean Leuenberger Shelley Loukas Matthew & Beth Maendel Amy Miller John & Phyllis Milligan William & Sue Paulus Brian & Liz Ramsey Joe & Rechelle Ray Sheryl Roberts & Family James & Cynthia Rudick Michael & Sherry Runzo Cheryl Shepherd Penny Simmons Mary Simons Jason & Tiffany Stephens Judy Tolerton Jerry & Janice Valentine Joanna Waite Jamie Ward Carol Williams
Bittersweet Visit at BCBGNP Continued from front cover, I happened to be working that day and something struck me about these visitors and the way they were taking it all in. It did not take long to discover that the older woman in the group was Mrs. Mille, accompanied by two friends. The story of the Visitor Center (and Beech Creek) is really the story of the beginning of Beech Creek Botanical Garden and Nature Preserve itself. The Mille’s originally owned the 164 acres and the log house was their home for their retirement years. Through mutual acquaintances Melinda and Paul Carmichael met the Mille’s and learned of their interest in leaving their land and home to an organization that would preserve the land, and even better, have it be used for educational and horticultural purposes. The property was purchased in March, 2003 with a grant from the Ohio Public Works Clean Ohio Fund together with a donation of land value by the owners (the Mille’s). As agreed upon, the Mille’s were to remain in their home until they moved on. Sadly, Mr. Mille died before this move and it was just two years ago that Mrs. Mille moved to Sebring. It had always been the intention that the log home would become the Visitor Center for Beech Creek and so began the renovations. July 5, 2011 was the official opening for the public and, for those who had visited Beech Creek in previous years, the Visitor Center with its many renovations and additions, including the gorgeous wildlife observation deck, resource library and nature store, was breathtaking. And so it was for Mrs. Mille, but ten fold. Within minutes we were all shedding tears and tissues were needed all around. She came through the door into what had been her living room. Standing in front of the stone fireplace, she commented that we On the far right - Mrs. Mary Lou Mille on our new deck in July. managed to even keep some of her dust. She peeked into the renovated kitchen and then slowly made her way to the deck. She and her companions sat here for quite awhile, exclaiming how beautiful it was, sitting quietly and taking it all in. It was her first visit back with the renovations completed. They all then visited the butterfly house. - Frederica Scott
Facility Rentals Our new Community Room is located on the lower level of the visitor center. This room has been transformed into a beautiful, clean, bright meeting room. Thanks to the Hoover Foundation and our very dedicated and “Amazing” volunteers. This room will seat up to 25 people at tables, and approximately 40 people with chairs arranged in theater style. Our Community Room is now available to groups, businesses or individuals for meetings, special events or programs. The Wildlife Observation Deck is a perfect place to hold your next family event (Bridal Shower, Baby Shower, Birthday, etc.) or business after hours meet-in-greet. This area will seat 24-30 people. A beautiful setting, you really feel like you are in a tree house. The Amazing Garden Plant Exploratorium is an excellent choice for children’s birthday parties! Lush plants, flowers, trains, turtles, music and 17 hands-on, fun education stations. Contact Melinda for scheduling, 330-829-7050 firstname.lastname@example.org
Garden Symposium Is scheduled for
February 18, 2012 8:30am - 4:15pm Save the Date! The 12th annual Garden Symposium is beginning to take shape. Some sessions include: * Square Foot Gardening * Tough Plants for Tough Places * Garden Science Simplified * Junk / Art in the Garden * Cooking for Best Health * Grow Fresh Greens All Winter / Cold Frames * Miniature Gardening ~ Workshop Gift Certificates for the Garden Symposium are a great holiday gift giving idea. Gift Certificates are available at the BCBGNP Visitor Center open on weekends or call 330-829-7050 to order by phone.
To educate and inspire people about horticulture and the environment; to conserve and preserve land and plants; and to develop and maintain a botanical garden and nature preserve for public use.
Mission 11929 Beech St NE Alliance, OH 44601
Prsrt Std US Postage Paid Alliance OH Permit #300
Calendar * Amazing Garden & Visitor Center Open Weekends at BCBGNP Saturdays 10:00am - 4:00pm Sundays 12:00 - 5:00pm
* Bird-in-Hand (Handfeeding Birds) January through February Saturdays & Sundays 12:00-3:00pm * Garden Symposium February 18, 2012 at R.G. Drage Career Center (Massillon, OH)
* Every Tuesday & Friday, Volunteer Work Days 10am-4pm at BCBGNP
Newsletter Comments Melinda Carmichael E-mail: email@example.com
Education ~ Preservation ~ Recreation ~ Inspiration