Garden Club Of Virginia Offers Nature Events

Area residents are invited to get back to nature with the Garden Club of Virginia.

The two-day event at Natural Bridge State Park opens Tuesday, Sept. 24. Experiences include the Virginia Native Plant Horticulture Show with the theme “In Celebration of the Garden Club of Virginia’s 100 Years of Conservation” from 2 to 6 p.m. Entries are being accepted Sept. 23, 2-5 p.m. and Sept. 24, 8-10 a.m.

Guided and self-guided hikes through the park’s six miles of trails will be held that day as well, from 10 a.m. to noon and 2:30 to 4:30 p.m.

At 1:30 p.m. a tree planting with Bartlett Tree Experts and Rock-bridge elementary students will celebrate GCV’s work at Natural Bridge.

At the Cedar Creek buffet dinner that day at 6:30 p.m., attendees can enjoy a casual supper next to Natural Bridge and meet the environmental award recipients and presenters at the next day’s conservation forum.

The Garden Club of Virginia’s 61st annual conservation forum, “Trees: Canopy of Conservation,” on Wednesday, Sept. 25, from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. features four speakers who will present on a broad range of topics relating trees to the benefit of the environment.

Speakers and topics include:

Frazier Armstrong, Capital Trees executive director, on “The Evolution of Capital Trees: Urban Greening and the Benefits to the Greater Community”;

Dr. Elizabeth Brantley, Bartlett Tree Experts, on “Monitoring Forest Health, Risk Assessment and Fungal-Plant Community Interactions”;

Dr. Eric Wiseman, Department of Urban Forestry and Arboriculture, Virginia Tech, on “Virginia Big Tree Program” and diseases and pests affecting our trees;

And Andrew Moore, author of “Pawpaw: In Search of America’s Forgotten Fruit,” on “The Relationship Between Fruit Trees and Plants, Fungi and Bacteria.”

After lunch, attendees can take an optional guided hike at Virginia Horse Center.

Preregistration is required for the Cedar Creek buffet dinner, at a cost of $35 per person, and the conservation forum, also costing $35. The admission to the forum includes continental breakfast. Students are admitted free to the forum. Preregister online at gcvirginia.org.

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