The Garden Enthusiast- Backyard Nature Station Update August 2012


Fellow Backyard Nature Lovers,

Mid August already! The blistering heat of 2012 will soon be behind us.


What's New in the Store?

Birding: New Birdfeeders/Houses, Squirrel Feeders

Garden art: Pottery by Rick Knob, Statuary by Tony Dileo, Windchimes

Tool Shed: Hydroponic Supplies, Cedar Seeders: Handmade by local artists using untreated, decay-resistant Western Red Cedar. Mobile Garden can be used as either a planter or a raised bed! ; Seed Organizers

Miscellaneous: Gift Totes, Chicken Waterers. Books

Botanical Interests Certified Organic Seeds, Non-GMO Seeds and Heirloom/Open Pollinated Seed

New artists: Handmade soap by Local Artist, Julie Frye; glass art

We now carry Birds and Blooms in the store. If you've not seen this magazine, check it out. Great info on birding and ideas on gardening.

Coming this summer  you'll have an opportunity to drop by and talk with knowledgeable friends of The Garden Enthusiast who will be there to answer your gardening questions. Check the Classes and Events Schedule for details.

Old Town Tucker Update


120th anniversary of Tucker continues!

Welcome Yellow Llama and

Thanks to Jason & Jenna and all the other volunteers that helped to assure the success of the Tucker Summer Festival.

GREEN MARKET ON MAIN - Old Town Tucker's own farmer's market Sundays from 10am - 2PM on Main Street

If you want to volunteer for the market or any events, please let me know.


Upcoming events on Main Street

Add these to your calendar now!

September 8th- Cruise In (live music)

The following events are sponsored by the Old Town Tucker Merchant's Association (OTTMA)> Proceeds benefit the Main Street District.

  •         November 17th- BBQ and Bluegrass Festival
  •         December 8th- Christmas on Main
  •      March 2, 2013- Chili Cook-off

Classes & Events

Lots of new classes! Please take advantage of them when you can.

(Note: preregistration is requested - class size is limited - call 404-474-7072 to register or for more information)

 Thursday, September 6th (6:30-7:45pm) - PRUNING TO RETAIN THE NATURAL FORM OF PLANTS (Barbara Dorfman/Landscape Consultant): This presentation will cover the tools you will need, timing and when to ignore the rules, renewal pruning on overgrown shrubs, how to thin overly dense hedges, where to remove tree branches and why, and how to predict the way plants will respond to pruning.

 Saturday, September 8th (10:00am-11:30am) - Acrylic Stain on Muslin Fabric (Sonya Prater/Art Teacher):  We will be painting on muslin fabric and creating stains with acrylic paints. The different steps will be discussed and demonstrated in detail including how to transfer a drawing, fabric preparation, how to create acrylic stain, and apply stains to muslin fabric for your finished product. Drawing examples from nature will be provided or you can bring your own 8x11 line drawing to class. Acrylic stain on muslin fabric is fun and gives you the opportunity to create wall paintings, pillows, quilts and other great ideas. Price: 30.00 supplies included. (Ages 16+)

 Saturday, September 8th (10am-12pm) - You will have the opportunity to address your gardening questions and concerns with a member of the Dekalb Master Gardner Association, Jimmy Dorsey! Come in any time during the 10 -12 time frame to meet Jimmy.

Saturday, September 22nd (10:30-11:30) - Birding by Ear (Pam Higginbotham/Atlanta Audubon Society): Whether you are new to birding or want to raise your level of expertise, learning bird songs is essential. It's a tough task, but doable with the right guidance and information. Pam can help you get a handle on some of Atlanta's common birds. Donations to Atlanta Audubon Society welcomed. 

Saturday, September 29th (10:00am-12:00pm) - Five Ways to Make Your Pictures More Interesting (Chuck Holmes):  Flowers and plants are beautiful, but as some smart person once said there's no reason you can't make your pictures of them even better and more interesting.  This session takes up five ways you can make your digital photographs of flowers, plants, and nature scenes much more striking.  The techniques include framing your shot in the camera, perspective, size, color (or lack of it), and digital manipulation with low-cost or free software.  Bring your camera and shoot some truly different pictures.  Cost: $25

 Sunday, September 30th (1pm-2:30pm) - Pruning to Retain the Natural Form of Plants (Barbara Dorfman): This presentation will cover the tools you will need, timing and when to ignore the rules, renewal pruning on overgrown shrubs, how to thin overly dense hedges, where to remove tree branches and why, and how to predict the way plants will respond to pruning. 

 Saturday, October 6th (1-3pm) - Mycology 101: With a Hands on Tutorial for Building your Own Mushroom Log (Brady Bala): Learn the basics of Mycology by starting your very own mushroom culture. Cost: $35 (supplies and mushroom log included)

 Saturday, October 13th (10:00am-11:30pm): Coil Wrap with Yarn (Sonya Prater): Coil wrapping is a great way to create baskets, wall hangings or sculptures. This coil wrapping class includes different designs to choose from and complete instructions for good wrapping techniques. During this class you will be able to work on your design and leave with supplies needed to finish your project at home. Due to variety of designs and techniques each piece will vary in time. Cost: $30 (supplies included) Ages 16+

 Saturday, October 20th (10:30-11:30) Plantings for Birds (Pam Higginbotham) Native plantings are stressed, especially those that provide food (berries, seeds, and the like) or are habitats for insects (which draw in all of the insectivorous birds warblers, wrens, bluebirds, vireos, etc.  to your yard).

 Saturday, October 27th (10am-12pm) - You will have the opportunity to address your gardening questions and concerns with a member of the Dekalb Master Gardner Association, Jane McLean! Come in any time during the 10 -12 time frame to meet Jane.

Saturday, November 3rd (10:00am-11:30am) - Dream Catcher made from a Branch in Nature (Sonya Prater): Dream catchers have been a part of Native American culture for many generations. Learn how to make your own dream catcher from a branch and feel free to bring symbols to add. The history of the Dream Catcher will be shared. Cost $30 (supplies included) Ages 16+

Saturday, November 10th (1pm-2pm) - Trees of Our Lives: Small Native Trees for the Landscape (Dawn Hines, Master Gardener)

Saturday, December 1st (10:00am-11:30am) - Drawing/Blending with Pencil (Sonya Prater): The focus of this class is learning how to draw and to apply different blending techniques. Learn to draw by looking at different images provided and using a variety of blending tools. Drawing can be a great way to express yourself. Cost $30 (supplies included) Ages 16+

Saturday, December 13th (10:00am-11:30am) � Bamboo Wind Chime (Sonya Prater): Wind chimes bring a soothing musical sound to any garden or outside space. Learn about the history of wind chimes from different cultures. Enjoy making your personal wind chime made of bamboo and other natural objects. Cost $30 (supplies included) Ages 16+


2012 Best Backyard Squirrel Photo Contest!!!

Here's how it works!

Contest begins on August 31st and ends on September 31st. The finalists will be posted for public voting on October 2nd through October 10th.  The image with the most votes wins!  The winner will be announced on Saturday October 11th!! Prizes will go to 1st, 2nd and 3rd place winners!!

Contest is open to professional and amateur photographers alike. New entries only - no previous submissions please!  Images must be the creation of the entrant. One entry per person.

Don't forget to put your name and phone number on the back of the picture!





~1st Place 2011 Photo Contest~1st Place Winner









Bird of the Month

Painted Bunting   (Passerina ciris)      Painted Bunting

Male Painted Buntings are the most spectacularly colored of all North American songbirds, with a gaudy combination of red, blue, and green feathers. This species has two distinct breeding populations in North America, but overall, it has shown a significant decline across its entire range during the past 35 years. The exact causes for Painted Bunting's decline are not known, but they are believed to include habitat loss, cowbird parasitism, and trapping for the pet trade on its wintering grounds.

An adult male Painted Bunting is arguably the most distinctive songbird in North America, with the combination of a deep blue head, red under parts, a green back, and a red rump. While not as brightly colored as males, female Painted Buntings are also distinctive. The female has an overall greenish plumage which is more darkly colored above than below.

 Painted Bunting has two distinct breeding populations: one found along the Atlantic Coast from North Carolina south to central Florida; and another that stretches across much of Louisiana, Arkansas, Oklahoma, and Texas, southward into northern Mexico.  

 Painted Bunting favors somewhat open areas with dense brush at all seasons. Its diet consists mostly of seeds and insects, with insects predominating during the breeding season. These birds forage mostly on the ground or in low brush. Males defend territory by singing from a high perch, often hidden among the uppermost foliage of a tree. Males, who may have more than one mate, will actually fight to hold territories; these fights are sometimes bloody and even fatal. The nest is an open, woven cup of grass, leaves, roots, and animal hair. Painted Bunting often associates with Indigo Buntings in migratory flocks, and sometimes interbreeds with that closely-related species.

Community Events (& SPIRIT)

Henderson Park Community Garden is waiting the final results but it looks like they have come in 3rd place and will win $4000 which they will use for a greenhouse. Congratulations Henderson Park and thanks to everyone who voted!.

  Master Gardener Training - MG TRAINING CLASS 2013 STARTS JAN 9 and runs through April 1 (all Wed)  we need lots of good applicants so please recruit for us and ask them to contact us right away. Application sessions for DeKalb group will be Sept. 5, 12 and 19 from 9:30 to 11:30 but we need their contact info. to remind them. LOOKING FOR A FEW GOOD MEN & WOMEN (25 to be exact)  just like the MARINES - these are garden-marines, worker bees and leaders.


 Welcome back from your Summer Vacation!

           DMGA will have its August Meeting on Monday the 27th at 6:00PM.   We will be meeting in the Northlake Public Library as usual.


           Barbara Dorfman of the Georgia Native Plant Society (GNPS)   will present a program  by Doug Tallamy entitled  "Bringing Nature Home".


           For the most current information on DMGA activities, go to our website

October 13th- Taste of Tucker


Ongoing at The Garden Enthusiast-Backyard Nature Station-


Wish List -add your list of what you'd love for people to give you from the store.


Gift certificates

Hope to see you soon,

Linda, Brittany, Jessica, Jeremy & Greyson

The Garden Enthusiast - Backyard Nature Station

2316 D Main Street

Tucker, GA 30084

Hours: Tuesday - Saturday 10am - 6PM

Sunday 10am - 5PM

Monday Closed


Contact us at 404-474-7072 or [email protected]

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