Friday Fieldtrip::Springtime in the South

by heatherkp

I have a lot going on behind the scenes and I’m not quite ready to share as I mentioned in a previous post BUT…I want to share some of what I’ve been doing!  I recently decided to apply to volunteer at Brookgreen Gardens and last Tuesday I was “interviewed” and “oriented” to become a part of that team.  I am so excited, as a Master Gardener in both Maryland and Georgia I’ve been itching to get my hands in the dirt here and begin to learn more about the coastal plants I’m not familiar with.  The Master Gardener program in SC is run through Clemson and I missed the cut off for the first class of the year so while I’m waiting and deciding if I want to continue as a Master Gardener here I opted to jump into the Brookgreen opportunity!  This place is one of my favorite public gardens, anywhere, ever!

Here is the daily display of the flowers in bloom.  This is not a comprehensive display but it represents alot of what’s blooming on any given day.  It’s the sneak peak of goodies to be seen and smelled.

This bottle tree is in the education center garden which includes edible crops such as rice, corn, medicinal herbs, greens and other seasonal crops.  I love the Southern tradition of bottle trees in the garden, they are said to catch evil spirits as they get caught the colorful bottles after being entranced.

Look at all these blooming beauties!  Azaleas, Delphinium, Larkspur, Poppies and many other springtime favorites were in bloom.  With the warm winter and spring we are having, the daffodils were almost done blooming but there were some incredible combinations of flowers not typically in bloom together.  March is typically a “dangerous” month in low country gardens that border marshy areas, snakes and alligators are coming out of hibernation and I was startled by one in an unexpected spot as I was trying to get some shots.  I’ll be learning a lot more about where they like to hang out and I’ll be using extreme caution!  I am typically a pretty fearless gardener but I have a healthy respect for these potentially deadly creatures.  Avoidance will be my main tactic, along with long pants, closed toe shoes and gloves when reaching into hidden areas.

I am thrilled to just be able to go soak in the beauty and contribute to sharing that with all the visitors who come there.  I’m sure you will be hearing and seeing more of my Brookgreen experience over the months to come.  If you ever get to Myrtle Beach or Charleston, it’s worth the little extra drive to visit this garden which also includes a comprehensive sculpture collection and a lot of plantation history.

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