The Garden Enthusiast- Backyard Nature Station Update September 2014

Table of Contents 
Intro 
  Updates 
  Call to Action - order/preorders 
Children’s Garden 
From our Customers 
Classes & Events 
   Annual Photo Contest 
   Sidewalk Sale 
Happenings 
  Old Town Tucker Update/Happenings 
  Community Events and Spirit 
  Other Backyard Nature Events 
  Gardening 
  Opportunities in the Garden for September 
Birding 
  Bird of the Month: House Finch 
  Audubon Field Trips 

Fellow Backyard Nature Lovers, 

Summer is winding down and fall will officially be here in less than 3 weeks! This is the time for fall migration with many birds heading south toward their winter homes. Though many flowers have peaked, there are still quite a few to enjoy in the garden such as roses, sunflowers, hosta, and more. Take a walk and enjoy the sights and sounds. 

We’ll being attending two of our largest vendors’ expos in the next month looking for new products. In preparation for bringing in the new products we’re going to have a sidewalk sale. Check for more info below. 

Want a new sweatshirt for the fall? Preorder by September 14th to pick the one and size you want and also get a10% discount. Great for gift giving! We’ll also order any t-shirts that you want that we typically don’t carry. There is a very wide selection to choose from. Crewneck sweatshirts originally $26.99; hooded sweats originally $32.99. Check out the website at: http://www.earthsunmoon.com/ 

We have a selection of cool weather seeds in now. We will be making another order. If there is something you want, let us know by September 14th and we’ll place it on this order. 

September is National Honey month. Support your local bee keepers. We carry David's Garden Honey in a wild selection of flavors. 

On sale through September 13th – all in stock summer flags, mat mates and yard designs 20% off. 

Children’s Garden 

Seven raised beds are in and one – Peter Rabbit’s Garden – is planted. Brittany planted spinach, collards, carrots, cabbage, lettuce and onion. A feast for a rabbit! The walls for the water feature are up. Most of the dirt and debris are out. As the weather cools, we’re hoping to get a few perennials into some of the beds. 



huge thank you goes out to the people who have contributed to the garden: Scott Topping, Steve Key, Jim Jackson, Gro South, Mark & Marta Ward, Laura & Terry Martin, John & Kathy Crockett, Robin Rutel, Carolyn Cash, Alexia Kartis & Susan Ramey, Nancy & Allan Patterson, Mike,  Home Depot, Hearth & Patio, Oakhurst Reality Partners and my family (who gets drawn into most of my projects) – for this project: my husband (John), sons ( Scott & Jeremy), son-in-law (Chris), and grandsons (Devon, Sage and Cameron). 

From Our Customers 

Just wanted to let you know I always enjoy your newsletter! It is such a wealth of information; accumulated neatly in one easy to read site. You help to keep the Tucker and Smoke Rise residents updated and on top of all the current events relative to our area. I know this can be a formidable task. Wanted to let you know it is appreciated, well used and a wonderful reference for so many different and varied interests. Thank you! Sally Y. 

LOVE your newsletter! Thank you for spending the time to put it together, it is appreciated! Is there a website to get more info on the Master Gardner program? Thanks, Suzanne S. 
Suzanne, Thanks! You can go to http://www.caes.uga.edu/extension/dekalb/anr/BecomingaMasterGardener.html for more information on the program. I hope that if you are at all interested, you'll go ahead and sign up for an information session. Linda (note information sessions are now closed) 

Classes and Events 

We had lots of votes from our customers in our annual photo contest. The recurring message was that it was a very difficult decision. Most people wanted to vote for more than one picture. The votes are in and the winners of gift certificates are: 
1st place: Michael O’Rourke 
2nd place: Karen Angel 
3rd place: Valarie Nichols 

    

Thanks to everyone who brought pictures in and for all of you who had to make that tough decision of who to vote for. We’ll do this again next year! 

Saturday October 18th Sidewalk Sale – Join us as we offer some great bargains on finds from the expos and clear out some inventory to make way for new products. More info in next month’s issue. 

Old Town Tucker Update/Happenings 

We miss Eric’s Fit Lab since they moved to First Avenue. Soon they’ll be moving to the former My Fair Lady spot. Construction has been completed in the aerobic room and the locker rooms are in progress. Way to go Eric and your team! 

Sweet Dee's 
welcomes Autumn with their specialty Fall flavors: Pumpkin Spice, Cinnamon Apple, S'mores and Pecan Pie, just to name a few. So, stop in for a dee-licious cupcake and hot cup of joe to celebrate the season! 

Saturday September 13th 5 pm Tucker Cruise-In 
This is the last one for this year – come and join in the fun! For more information, call 770-527-1521. 

Thursdays from 4 - 8 PM Tucker Farmers Market 
2333 Main Street in the Freemasons Square and Bank of America parking lot Saturday 

October 4th Taste of Tucker 2014 1-6PM 
On Main Street – fun for all ages. Put it on your calendar now. Restaurants that have signed up include: Bambinelli’s, L’Thai, Enzo’s Pizza, Longhorn, Sprig/1910, Riverside Pizza, Growler Time, Matthews Cafeteria, Lunch on Main, Shorty’s Pizza, Big Tex Decatur, Roly Poly, Local 7, Uncle Maddio’s Pizza, Brockett Pub, The Auxiliary, Marlow’s Tavern, and Grecian Gyro. The headliner for this year's event is Gareth Asher (http://www.garethasher.com/) with Nikki from Local 7; other bands include Business Casual and The Forgiven Band. 

Community Events and Spirit 

Monday September 8th Tucker Historical Society 6:30PM 
Join in at the Tucker Recreation Center in Room # 9 as Larry Upthegrove will be the guest speaker offering insight on Atlanta and Tucker history as well as interesting information on the Nesbit family who settled in the Tucker/Gwinnett County area. Larry grew up in Floyd County and attended Berry College. You may have met him as a tour guide at the Oakland Cemetery talking about the persons and families who are laid to rest there. Larry has served as a tour guide there for 20 years and he previously served on the Oakland Cemetery Board of Trustees. 

Saturday September 13th 10 am – 11am Tucker Civic Association’s ‘Give an Hour’ Fire Station 23 Appreciation Event
 
TCA is asking residents to show their appreciation for our local firefighters by showering them with all sorts of goodies. Donations of food staples are welcome – everything from pepper, vegetable oil, peanut butter, sugar, creamer, and snacks to beverages such as tea, coffee, water and soda. They also love receiving homemade baked items. Bring donations to Fire Station 23 at 1265 Brockett Rd. Children are welcome to come and look at the fire trucks. 

Saturday October 4th 6th Annual Rivers Alive Clean Up 9AM – Noon 
REGISTER FOR RIVERS ALIVE After a one-year hiatus, TCA’s annual River Alive event is back on! They will be cleaning the South Fork of Peachtree Creek in two locations: at its intersection with Cowan Road and its intersection with Sarr Parkway. Free food & live music. Volunteer to help protect our resources! Over the last 5 years volunteers have helped to remove 62,000 pounds of trash out of the creek! Heavy rain date is Saturday October 11th. Please register ASAP. Must be 10 years or older to participate. For more info email Beth Ganga at [email protected]

Other Backyard Nature Events 

Thursday – Sunday, September 4th-7th 46th Yellow Daisy Festival 10AM – 6PM (Saturday until 7:30PM) 
Stone Mountain Park hosts this annual festival with artists, crafters, food, live music and more. 

Saturday, September 13th The Georgia Naturalist Rally 8AM 
Whether you are a seasoned naturalist or someone new to nature, this 4th annual day-long event offers something for any lover of the outdoors. Throughout the day, they are providing a variety of walks, hikes, and other activities throughout the park’s natural district. Experts will lead you through forests, fields, lakes and, of course, on the mountain while focusing on a variety of natural topics. Activities for children (with their parents) are also a part of the fun. $12 registration covers lunch, your choice of sessions, and entrance into Stone Mountain Park. Children under 15 years of age attend for free and must be accompanied by a parent. In conjunction with the Rally, the Georgia Native Plant Society will be holding a plant sale that day. Find lots of great native plants for your homes and gardens! Visit http://stonemountainpark.org/Natty%20Rally.html for more information and to register. 

Sunday, September 14th Stone Mountain Wildflower Walk 10AM – 12 Noon
 
Join Larry Winslett, nature photographer and co-author of Wildflowers of Stone Mountain, for a mile hike and get photography tips, too. Meet at the Songbird Habitat parking lot. Call to register 770-498-5658. Adults and children over 15; free program 

Wednesday September 17th Trees of Atlanta Speaker Series: Doug Tallamy 7:30AM – 9AM
 
Join Trees of Atlanta for an exciting morning of native tree education and a cup of coffee with Doug Tallamy. A professor and the chair of the Entomology and Wildlife Ecology department at University of Delaware, Dr. Tallamy has been studying insects and their role in the environment for over 20 years. He has authored 79 research articles and has taught Insect Taxonomy, Behavioral Ecology, and other courses for 32 years. He is also Director of the Center for Managed Ecosystems. Chief among his research goals is to better understand the many ways insects interact with plants and how such interactions determine the diversity of animal communities. His book, “Bringing Nature Home: How Native Plants Sustain Wildlife in Our Gardens,” was published by Timber Press in 2007 and was awarded the 2008 silver medal by the Garden Writer’s Association. The book has stimulated a national discussion about the need to share our living and working spaces with the biodiversity that runs our ecosystems. He gives 80-100 nation-wide talks per year describing the essential role that insects and the native plants that support them play in ecosystem function. Dr. Tallamy’s lecture, Let It Be an Oak, will be an informative talk comparing oak species to other popular shade trees in terms of their ability to support animal diversity, protect watersheds, sequester carbon dioxide, and restore lost plant communities. A book signing of Tallamy’s book, Bringing Nature Home, will follow. Credit cards accepted. Seats are limited & reservations are first come first served. RSVP NOW. The Trees Atlanta Kendeda Center located 225 Chester Avenue SE, Atlanta, GA 30316. 

Sunday September 21st The Wilderness Act Performance Series at Woodlands Garden 2 - 4PM 
“The Wilderness Act Performance Series is a musical and artistic celebration of the 50th Anniversary of the Wilderness Act of 1964. Through the commissioning of new music and art, this performance series builds public appreciation of the Wilderness Act’s impact on natural and cultural preservation. Woodlands is one of only five venues in Atlanta chosen to host this special event. Musicians from the Chamber Cartel will perform their original compositions, their poet in residence (Stephen Wing) will read his work and their visual artist will unveil a display that will remain in the garden for a month. Sunday September 21st, 28th, October 5th Woodlands Garden Plant Sale 2 - 4PM Spruce up your garden with a variety of trees, shrubs and perennials from Woodlands Garden’s Fall Plant Sale. Many of the plants come directly from the garden’s seven acres, including seedlings of Magnolia macrophylla or Bigleaf Magnolia, a Champion Tree located on site. Choose from trees and shrubs including Japanese maple, dogwood, redbud, American holly, Virginia sweetspire, and elderberry. Woodlands volunteers have also harvested perennials such as celandine poppy, passionflower vine, arum, hellebore, euphorbia, and ginger lily, and friends of the garden are donating other plants. Buyers can support Woodlands Garden and take home plants proven to thrive in the Decatur area. To learn more, or to shop for plants during the week, contact garden manger Ruby Bock at 678.641.2966 or [email protected] 932 Scott Blvd., Decatur, Ga 30030 

Monday September 22nd Urban Fruits 6PM 
Join the Dekalb Master Gardener Association as Aubrey Daniels talks about Concrete Jungle, the Atlanta-based nonprofit that forages for and delivers fruit to local homeless shelters, their fruit-tree mapping project, and their farm, Doghead Farm. From apples to serviceberries to persimmons to flying dragon fruit, Aubrey will explain how to easily find and harvest the enormous variety of fruits that Atlanta has to offer. He will also talk about what it's like to have three thousand pounds of fruit in your living room. Aubrey Daniels is an Atlanta native and a graduate of both Emory University and Georgia State University. An economist by day, he spends his free time leading groups of volunteers to pick fruit with Concrete Jungle, a nonprofit he co-founded that donates foraged fruit to homeless shelters. Their meetings are free and open to the public so bring a friend! Northlake Library, 3772 Lavista Rd Tucker, GA 30084 .Free. www.dmga.org 

Sunday September 28th Sunday in the Garden Concert at Woodlands Garden 2-4 PM 
Put on your walking shoes and explore Decatur's seven-acre garden and Georgia Piedmont native plant habitat. Volunteers welcome you and provide helpful information. Free concert featuring Libby Eason & David Martin Gibson. 932 Scott Blvd. Decatur, GA 30030 

Sunday October 5th Sunday in the Garden Concert at Woodlands Garden 2-4 PM Put on your walking shoes and explore Decatur's seven-acre garden and Georgia Piedmont native plant habitat. Volunteers welcome you and provide helpful information. Free concert featuring Community Drums. 932 Scott Blvd. Decatur, GA 30030 

Native Plant Garden at the Georgia Perimeter College Campus 3251 Panthersville Road Phone: 678-891-2668 
The Fall Lunch and Wildflower Series begins September 5th. The talks start at 12 Noon and each are preceded by a walk that is from 10:30 – 11:30 Free (but you might want to buy some plants!) 

Friday September 12th “Are We Doing Enough to Protect Rare Plants in Georgia?” 
Presented by Malcolm Hodges 
Garden Walk: Fall Fern Walk with Mary Lou Cannamela 

Friday September 19th Those Amazing Ferns 
Presented by Eleanor Craig 
Garden Walk: A Walk in the New “Meadow” Area with Pat Smith/Susan Todd 

Friday September 26th “Benefits of Using Native Plants” 
Presented by Jim Rodgers (Nearly Native Nursery) 
Garden Walk: Highlights of the Plant Sale Area with Marcia Parker 

Friday October 3rd “Botanizing the Tetons with Thelma and Linda"
 
Presented by George Sanko with Thelma Glover & Linda Pirkle 
Garden Walk: Finding Fall in the Garden with Karen Lindauer 

If desired, bring a lunch. Also, walks will not be held if it's raining, but talks will be. Follow signs at the garden to the classroom in room SH1100. Be there by 10:30 so you don't miss the walk. 
Fall plant sales at the Native Plant Garden are (10 am – 2 pm)
Fridays: September 12, 19, 26 October 3, 10, 17, 24, 31 
Saturdays: September 6, 13, 27 October 11, 25 
Check or cash only 

Festivals continue at Gibbs Garden throughout the summer. In September you can experience the Water lily, Hydrangea, Rose, Fern Dell and Wildflower festivals. 1987 Gibbs Drive, Ballground, GA 30107 (770-893-1881) 

Free walking tours of the Atlanta Beltline Arboretum every Friday and Saturday at 10am. Register here on the 20th of every month for the following month’s walking tours. 

Gardening, Etc. 

National Geographic WILD will be premiering a new series Pond Stars Tuesday September 9th at 10PM. They follow Chicago-based water feature specialists Aquascape, Inc. as they redecorate yards one home at a time to create an escape from everyday life and to connect with wildlife right outside the door. The specialists at Aquascape, Inc. combine technology with natural design principles to create beautiful, low maintenance water features that transform landscapes into retreats. The team tackles everything from decorative fountains to entire backyard remodels to major overhauls on ponds gone wrong. The cameras will follow every project from the initial concept to the finished landscape. Ponds are dug, rocks are selected, wildlife is carefully chosen and the plants and flowers are installed, all while highlighting the science of water features and how they invigorate the surrounding ecosystem. The team negotiates electrical wiring, thousand-pound boulders and outdated technology for a zoo habitat project. They install a 30-foot pond complete with an underwater camera for a football team owner and replicate a brown trout stream in another client’s backyard. 

Fall is the best time for planting trees, shrubs, vines, groundcovers, perennials and cool-season annuals. Plants established in the fall require less water and are less likely to suffer from drought-related stress next summer. Perennials planted in the fall will have a healthier root system making for larger plants and blossoms come next spring. Take a walk through your yard to see where you might want to add something new. Think year-round interest. 

It’s time to freshen up your containers for fall. They’re probably looking a little tired and leggy and maybe you’d like to change to some fall colors. So you’ll be looking for plants that can withstand the cool months and will bloom with shorter days probably with foliage for color. Besides our standards of mums, pansies, and ornamental kale, there is Heuchera and ornamental grasses. You’ll want to plant more plants in a container for fall (making them look full when you plant) since they won’t grow as rapidly as the spring containers do. They won’t need as much water so check them before adding more water and probably won’t need to be fertilized. If you do think they need fertilizer, use a water-soluble application. Another great idea – instead of directly planting into your heavy, decorative containers, plant in a lightweight plastic container and drop it into your decorative one. When you want to change the plants out, just remove the plastic container, replant and drop it back in. It’s a good way to keep your planters looking fresh all the time and especially for special events. If you buy some extra lightweight planters, you can even get them started ahead of time so they look established when you drop them in. 
Don’t forget, you can plant a very colorful container of vegetables and herbs too. Walk outside your door and harvest for dinner! 

Opportunities in the garden for September: 
Fall is a great time to plant especially since our temperatures have started to drop. 
• Plant or transplant beets, broccoli, cabbage carrots, collards, lettuce, mustard, onions, radishes, and turnips. 
• Renew mulch to keep down the weeds. Be sure to mulch new plants immediately after planting to reduce weeds and provide extra insulation. Mulch will help roots of newly planted trees and shrubs acclimate to the cold faster while they are becoming established this winter. When spring arrives, these plants will have well-developed root systems and be better prepared for possible drought. 
• Start adding those falling leaves to your compost pile. Mow them first for quicker breakdown. 
• Harvest herbs and keep them in a dry, cool location. You can also puree herbs such as basil with a little water or olive oil; freeze them in an ice a cube tray and use later for sauces. 
• Decorate your fairy garden for fall. 
• Take 4” cuttings of tender perennials such as sweet potato vine, geranium, and coleus. Remove the leaves at the lowest node (where the leaves attach to the stem) and then re-cut the stems about 1/2 inch below the node. Stick each cutting into 2 1/2 inch pots of moist, free-draining potting medium and enclose the containers in a plastic bag. Pout a few holes in the bag for ventilation. Keep the container in a bright spot out of direct sun. After about 1 week gently tug on a cutting. If you feel some resistance, you'll know roots have formed and you can take off the plastic bag. Once they've grown a good root system, repot the plants into 4 inch pots. 
• Improve your garden’s soil by planting cover crops such as Botanical Interest’s Cover Crop Soil Builder and Common Buckwheat. They grow all winter to provide nutrient rich material, prevent soil erosion, and suppress weeds. Till them back into the garden in early spring. 
• Harvest sunflower seeds once the flowers have begun to fade for a farm to table nutritious snack. 
• Grow a pot of chives on your windowsill to provide for your winter needs. 
• Now and into October is a great time to plant tall fescue. The ideal rate is 5-6#/1000sf. Applying straw mulch after seeding will increase the germination rate. Make sure the soil remains moist but not wet for the first 3 weeks or so to encourage germination and growth. You’ll want to water deeper and less often as the grass develops. 
• Divide or transplant spring-blooming perennials such as daylilies and hosta. 
• As autumn arrives plant pansies, chrysanthemums, asters, dianthus, and ornamental kale for color to your fall landscape. And, for our cooks out there, remember pansies are edible flowers and can add a little something special to your dishes. 
• Start transitioning your tropical plants that you’ll bring inside for the winter by moving them to a shadier spot. 
• Plant fall containers. 
• Freeze corn, beans and peppers from your garden for great eating until your crop is available in 2015. 
• Buy spring bulbs now so you have the best selection – wait to plant until October. They can add splashes of color to your landscape or planted en masse a bold shot of color. Use a fertilizer such as Espoma Bulb-Tone when planting. It helps to give bulbs a good start at planting time for best results. 
 • Add some pots of rosemary, thyme, and lavender for interest and for culinary purposes. You can achieve a natural palette of color year round! 
• Cooler weather means you can spend a little time getting rid of ivy that acts as a host to mosquitoes and Copperheads. 
• In the middle of the month apply a pre-emergent to prevent cold weather weeds in your lawn. 
• Fertilize your chrysanthemums and salvia for more blooms this fall. 

Birding 

Interested in the conservation of our birds? There was an interesting article in the Wall Street Journal by John W. Fitzpatrick on August 31st about the passenger pigeon. They use to be one of the most abundant birds on earth (over 5 billion) but their extinction occurred 100 years ago over a 44 year period. Click to read the whole article: New York Times Sunday Review. Early in the 20th century bluebirds were in trouble. The natural tree cavities that they used were becoming scarcer. In the past decades lots of people across the US have put up nesting boxes. The effort has been successful. All 3 types of bluebirds are increasing in numbers. We can make a difference! 

From Charlotte C who asked us to pass this along: Alert: Stop the Killing of 16,000 Cormorants “The Army Corps of Engineers is planning to kill 16,000 Double-crested Cormorants—more than 25 percent of the entire western North American cormorant population—in a misdirected effort to reduce avian predation on endangered salmon. The cormorants live and nest on East Seal Island, a globally-significant Important Bird Area (IBA) in Oregon's lower Columbia River estuary. While cormorants do prey on salmon, the fish are endangered because of dams, pollution, habitat loss, and an array of other factors—not because of the cormorants.” The comment deadline for this is past. The Audubon Society opposed the Army Corps alternative to use lethal control and supported their alternative of reviewing the situation and employing non-lethal methods of management. To help with conservation efforts, sign up for Audubon Alerts at www.audubonaction.org

A friend alerted me to the new hummingbird trail at the State Botanical Gardens in Athens. The trail winds through the Botanical Garden’s International Garden, Heritage Garden and Flower Garden. It sounds like this is a great place for some of our avid photographers to get a chance at ’the’ hummingbird photo and for all others to see more of them than perhaps they do in their backyards. Remember though, that the Ruby throats will be on their way south in less than a month – so go now or wait until next spring for this opportunity. 

Merlin Bird ID is free and available for iOS devices and Androids. The app covers 400 species. It asks you five questions about the bird and gives you a short list of most likely possibilities. It’s loaded with 2000 pictures and 1000 songs to help your confirm your choice. Pennington sponsored the Android version. It’s over 630mg so it’s suggested that you download over a wifi connection. Merlin is a great tool for beginning birders or anyone who wants to help share their love of birds. Download the free app now

Bird of the Month: House Finch 

 ( Left: Male/Right: Female )

• The House Finch is a year round resident of Georgia. It is small-bodied with a large beak and short wings. The male's head, neck and shoulders are rosy red with streaked brown back, belly and tail. The females are brown with streaked underparts. The male’s coloration is due to his diet. The more pigment in the food, the redder his feathers will be. The redder they are the more the females are attracted to them. 
• The females build the cup-shaped nest made of leaves, small roots, & twigs, string, wool, and feathers and lined with soft materials. They nest in openings in buildings, street lamps, ledges, and hanging plants. They may reuse their nest from year to year. 
• The House Finch has 2 or more broods per year (February – August) with 2-6 pale blue or white streaked or speckled eggs. Incubation time is 12 to 14 days and the chicks fledge 11 to 19 days later. 
•Their diet consists primarily of seeds (especially black oil sunflower & nyjer), buds, and fruit (cherries, strawberries, figs, etc.) but they also eat insects. 
• Their song is a rapid, cheery warble or a variety of chirps. 
•The House Finch was introduced from New York from the western US in the 1940’s as ‘Hollywood Finches’ and now populates the entire eastern US. 
• They suffer from a disease that causes their eyes to crust over. 
• The oldest known House Finch was 11 years & 7months old.  

Audubon Field Trips 

Check out the upcoming field trips from the Atlanta Audubon Society (get in touch with them for more information at 678-973-2437). (*) These walks are close by. 

Sunday September 7th Atlanta BeltLine 8AM
 
Birding Focus: Come walk the Atlanta BeltLine north of Piedmont Park with expert Arboretum Docents from Trees Atlanta and Atlanta Audubon. We will look for urban resident and migratory birds, hopefully with some close-up views. The habitats we will visit include Clear Creek, a golf course and woodland edges - all areas preferred by birds! The walk begins behind Ansley Mall and continues to Piedmont Park along the Beltline. In Piedmont Park we'll walk around the Clear Creek CSO area to look at birds in the water and in the brush and trees. This is a family-friendly walk, but is not appropriate for children in strollers or for dogs. Please bring drinking water, binoculars, and note-taking supplies if you'd like. Please register at BeltLine Bird Walk so that you will be contacted in the event of any updates or changes to the event.  

Saturday September 7th Noonday Creek 8AM 
Birding Focus: Migrants and residents in wetland and woodland habitats. Likely species include Great Blue Heron, woodpeckers, thrushes, warblers, and vireos. Any level of skill is welcome. 

Wednesday September 10th Kennesaw Mountain 7:30AM 
Birding Focus: Premier migrant hotspot in the SE. We'll be looking for fall migrants, primarily flycatchers, vireos, thrushes, warblers, tanagers, and grosbeaks. There is a free bird checklist specifically for the park available upon request in the Visitor Center. 

Saturday September 13th Cochran Shoals, CRNRA 8AM 
Birding Focus: Fall migration will be in full swing along the river at this very productive metro Atlanta hotspot. We'll focus on southbound songbirds including flycatchers, vireos, warblers, tanagers and more. This walk is suitable for adults and children over 14 years of age. Please do not bring your dog. 

Saturday September 13th Newman Wetlands Center and Huie Ponds of the CCWA 8AM 
Birding Focus: Resident and migrating waterfowl, raptors, and woodland birds. 

Thursday
 September 18th Murphey Candler Park 8AM 
Birding Focus: Three main habitats (lake, wetlands, mixed woods) provide good species diversity. We'll look for migrants and residents, including waterfowl, shorebirds, and passerines. The site is also reliable for turtles. This walk is suitable for adults and children over 14 years of age. Please do not bring your dog. This site can be especially good for beginning birders. 

Saturday September 20th George Pierce Park 8AM 
Birding Focus: This park is one of the best places in Gwinnett County to bird at any time of year. We will look for autumn migrants and permanent residents: herons, woodpeckers, flycatchers, and warblers. The main park path we will take goes through the woods and features a boardwalk past a large wetlands pond. Bring water, snacks, binoculars, and comfortable walking shoes. All levels welcome. 

Wednesday September 24th Cochran Shoals, CRNRA 8AM 
Birding Focus: Fall migration will be in full swing along the river at this very productive metro Atlanta hotspot. We'll focus on southbound songbirds including flycatchers, vireos, warblers, tanagers and more. We will begin this walk at the Columns Drive parking lot (which can be a good spot during migration) and will follow a different route than most AAS walks at this unit of the CRNRA. This walk is suitable for adults and children over 14 years of age. Please do not bring your dog. 

*Friday September 26th South Peachtree Creek Trail 8AM 
Birding Focus: Habitats include edges, forest, creekside and fields. We expect to find woodpeckers, passerines, a few raptors, and loads of Eastern Bluebirds. The South Peachtree Creek Trail begins at Mason Mill Park. A pedestrian bridge crosses the railroad tracks which, surprisingly, creates great edge habitat for many species of birds. A boardwalk meanders through the forest along the banks of South Peachtree Creek. The path ends at the ball fields and parking area at Medlock Park which is home to many Eastern Bluebirds. This walk is suitable for adults and children. This site can be especially good for beginning birders. 

*Saturday September 27th Fernbank Forest 8AM 
Birding Focus: Come discover more about the feathered inhabitants of Fernbank Forest, both fall migrants and residents. This program is excellent for beginning birders or those desiring gentle terrain. All ages are welcome. Program is held rain or shine, but may be cancelled in cases of severe weather. We recommend participants bring binoculars, field guides and water with them. Once the walk begins, participants must remain with the group for the duration of the program. Cost: This program is free for Fernbank Museum members and Atlanta Audubon Society members. Advance reservations are required at 404.929.6400. Participants should check in at the Museum ticketing counter, then meet the walk leaders in the Museum lobby. The group will depart promptly at 8:00 a.m. Due to the nature of the program, latecomers will not be accepted. Participant capacity is 25 people, so make your reservations today! 

Saturday September 27th Hard Labor Creek State Park 2PM 
Birding Focus: Hard Labor Creek is the 2nd largest GA State Park. It boasts a variety of habitats and has a history of birds like Loggerhead Shrikes, American Kestrels, and a variety of waterfowl on Lake Rutledge. We'll look for residents, including woodland birds, waterfowl, and raptors. 

Wednesday September 28th Cochran Shoals, CRNRA 7:30AM (with Georgia Sierra Club) 
Birding Focus: migrants and residents, including waterfowl, raptors, sparrows, woodpeckers, and warblers. This walk is suitable for adults and children over 14 years of age. Please do not bring your dog. Wednesday October 1st Kennesaw Mountain 7:30AM Birding Focus: Premier migrant hotspot in the SE. We'll be looking for fall migrants, primarily flycatchers, vireos, thrushes, warblers, tanagers, and grosbeaks. There is a free bird checklist specifically for the park available upon request in the Visitor Center. 

Saturday October 4th Piedmont Park 8AM 
Birding Focus: Early migrants and permanent residents. All levels welcome. Excellent for beginning birders or those desiring gentle terrain. 

Saturday October 4th Morgan Falls Overlook Park 8:30AM 

Birding Focus: Join us for a family-friendly guided bird walk along the trail at Overlook Park. Resident and migratory birds will be seen during the height of fall migration. Binoculars will be available to borrow. Ages 6+ are welcome. This walk is free, but preregistration is required. To register, go to the Sandy Springs Recreation & Parks Department website. Or call 770-730-5600. 

Saturday October 5th Noonday Creek 8AM 
Birding Focus: Migrants and residents in wetland and woodland habitats. Likely species include Great Blue Heron, woodpeckers, thrushes, warblers, and vireos. Any level of skill is welcome. 



Hope to see you soon, Linda, Brittany, Jessica, Jeremy & Greyson 

The Garden Enthusiast - Backyard Nature Station 2316 D Main Street Tucker, GA 30084 

Hours: Monday – Saturday 10am – 6PM Sunday: Closed 
Contact us at 404-474-7072 or [email protected] – we love to get your feedback!


Like us on Facebook! 
https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Garden-Enthusiast-Backyard-Nature-Station/183052068407686