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The Times-Herald

Spring Home & Garden Sunday, April 25, 2010 — 1B

By the garden gate Spring garden tour highlights Coweta gardens

advantages of disease-resistant noisette roses that are repeat bloomers with an amazing fragrance. Also take note of the unexpected combination of plants such as blueberries and herbs happily existing with perennials. Tim Davis’ three-acre garden on Cedar Creek Road is a combination of whimsy and creativity. Pass through a gate and “sunflowers” crafted by the homeowner will greet you. Throughout the Coweta County Master Gardeners have selected five outstanding Newnan gardens to be garden, Davis takes everyday objects, such as rebar or bowling balls, and turns them into showcased in its annual Spring Garden Gate Tour scheduled for Saturday, May 22. Tour time works of art. This garden is packed with ideas. Happy Valley Circle resident Patricia Buck is is 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. a transplanted Texan who has coaxed the Master Gardener Ann Rouse, with help from Georgia red clay into a lovely shade garden of husband, Don, has embraced their three acre hostas, ferns, pachysandras, Oak Leaf garden on Lake Ridge Road and turned it into a hydrangeas, and Japanese maples. Buck is also wonderful space for outdoor family activities. an artist and this is played out with Tiffany style Their woodland garden is nestled on the point of a reservoir filled with plants perfect for their lampshades popping up out of the soil or rural setting. Lush shade plants like hostas, lady stumps with faces. For more information on the tour, call 770-251ferns, bleeding hearts, Nippon lily and hydrangeas are happily settled among the trees. 2673 or the Coweta County Extension Office at Janet Robinson, the 2008 Master Gardener of 770-254-2620. Tickets will be on sale at the nursery or at the Extension Office, 255 Pine Rd., the Year, appropriately resides on Camellia Newnan. Circle. There is an impressive water feature Included in the $20 ticket price is a catered where herons stand guard over iris, water lilies, lunch at Country Gardens Farm and Nursery, papyri, and cattails. Aside from the traditional azaleas, camellias, and rhododendron, there are 3728 Lower Fayetteville Rd., Newnan, from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. more than 100 varieties of daylilies and 25 variThe proceeds from the garden tour help supeties of iris. As you wind your way past a gazebo port the Coweta County Master Gardener down to a lake, you’ll find a palette of Italian arum, rose bed, heuchera, and a Japanese garden Association, a volunteer organization that provides horticultural information to the communicomplete with a pagoda. ty in educational and beautification projects by Bonnie Umberger, a master gardener for 14 using the research and resources of the years, has proven that anyone can have a backyard woodland garden in a subdivision. She and University of Georgia. The Association proher husband, Steve, have resided on Southshore motes local UGA Extension projects such as 4H, Junior Master Gardeners, the operation of an Drive for 16 years. Over time the garden has educational greenhouse and the Master evolved from a typical subdivision plot with a Gardener Scholarship fund for Coweta County children’s playground into a garden filled with high school seniors who wish to pursue a career native plants and hardwoods. The Umbergers in horticulture, agriculture, environmental sciare particularly fond of their antique rose collection and will gladly educate visitors on the ence or a related subject.

Gardeners are artists who paint with plants and this is exemplified by this placement of the delicate, eye-popping red leaves and artful branching of a Japanese maple.

Paths of green meander through carefully tended beds leading to a gazebo of bird houses. This is the three-acre garden of the Rouse family.

Photos by Master Gardener Steve Rydzewski

The Southshore Drive garden of Bonnie Umberger is included on this year’s Spring Garden Gate Tour. Nestled in a wooded cottage garden, a bright blue door draws the eye down a path to a rustic garden shed built amid azaleas.

At first glance, this scene seems to be a natural mountain stream, but it’s not. Part of a larger water feature, this retreat is located in the back yard of Janet Robinson, the 2008 Master Gardener of the Year.


2B — The Times-Herald — Sunday, April 25, 2010

HOME & GARDEN

For more gardening stories, see page 8B.

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To attract birds, such as this Northern Cardinal, homeowners need to provide a habitat that has food, cover, nesting areas, and water.

Backyard Birds By STEPHANIE RAY BUTCHER Coweta County Extension Service Backyard birds can add music and color to landscapes. When I was a child, my mother had a birdfeeder just outside the kitchen window, and I loved to see the birds come and go from that feeder. There’s no doubt that the quality of our landscape is enhanced by the presence of songbirds, and you can increase their presence by properly selecting and arranging ornamental trees and shrubs. The appropriate selection of food-producing plants can ensure the presence of birds year-round. To attract and maintain a bird population, a habitat must provide food, cover, nesting areas, and water. Ornamental trees and shrubs can supply the necessary cover (shelter) and nesting areas. Many ornamental plants can satisfy more than one habitat requirement. For instance, multi-stem plants that form a dense canopy will satisfy the needs for nesting and also provide cover.

Food Not surprisingly, the food source for birds should be supplied naturally by the trees and shrubs in the yard if possible. To maximize the natural food source, select plants to ensure an available food source year-round. The use of trees and shrubs native to your locale will help ensure that appropriate fruits and berries are available for the local bird population. If the landscape does not supply food during certain periods, you can supplement with commercial mixes of bird seed. This will help keep birds in the vicinity of your yard. Some birds eat a wide variety of seeds while others prefer one or two types. The seeds that appeal to the majority of birds are sunflower, proso millet, and peanut kernels.

Cover & Nesting Areas Birds require a place of cover or shelter if they are to become long-term residents. They require protection from inclement weather (sun, heat, wind, and rain) and natural predators. This is why the multi-stem plants that form a dense canopy are preferred by birds. The dense canopy also provides an ideal environment for nesting. Since birds require shelter year-round, the yard should have a mix of deciduous and evergreen plants. Evergreen plants include broadleaf evergreens, such as holly, conifers, and red cedar. Before selecting trees and shrubs for your landscape, you should consider the habitat element provided, fruiting season, deciduous (loses leaves in winter) or evergreen, and size of mature tree (to fit

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Water A source of fresh water is also necessary to maintain your bird population. The water source should be shallow (no more than 2"-3" deep) and replaced on a regular basis. Running water, such as a shallow fountain, is the ideal water source. The water source should be elevated or in the middle of an open area to minimize predation by cats and other animals. An elevated bird bath or fountain is ideal. You will find that with the addition of a few carefully selected plants you can turn your ordinary backyard into an outdoor sanctuary filled with one of God’s happiest little creatures. For more information or for a list of recommended trees and shrubs contact the Coweta County Extension office at 770-254-2620 or by email to: uge2077@uga.edu .

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Spring Home and Garden 2010  

Spring Home and Garden 2010

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