Friday, February 24, 2017

Air Plants Focus of Exhibit and Programs by Urban Terrain

Tillandsia exhibit at The Scrap Exchange by Aisha Sanders. Photo by Aisha Sanders.

Passionate about air plants? See the exquisite exhibit and designing workshops with Tillandsia offered by Durham living-art designer and Durham Co. Master Gardener Aisha Sanders:

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Durham Co. Master Gardeners Offer Free, Spring Gardening Programs

"Tomatoes and Okra" will be presented both at Durham Garden Center
and For Garden's Sake Nursery.
Photo illustration by
Durham County Public Library
South Regional Branch, 4505 S Alston Ave.
Registration is required.  919-560-7410.

Weeds – Friend or Foe?
Sunday, March 5th, 3-4 pm. 
Presented by Nan Len, Durham County Extension Master Gardener volunteer.

Pollinators-a-Plenty: A Look at Hundreds of Pollinators Aiding Food and Flower Production in North Carolina
Sunday, March 12th, 3-4 pm.
Presented by Chris Apple, assisted by Tracey-Lee Drummond Lucas, Durham County Extension Master Gardener volunteers.

Container Gardening: Blooms, Herbs & Veggies on Your Patio
Sunday, April 2nd, 3-4 pm.  Presented by Leanna Murphy Dono, Durham County Extension Master Gardener volunteer.
Straw Bale Gardening 
Sunday, June 4th, 3-4 pm.
Presented by Georganne Sebastian and Darcey Martin, Durham County Extension Master Gardener volunteers.
Durham Garden Center
4536 Hillsborough Rd, Durham, NC 27705.
Requires registration. RSVP by either signing up at the store, calling the store at 919-384-7526, or emailing an RSVP to:

Tantalize Your Senses with Herbs
Saturday, March 11th, 10 am to noon.  
Presented by Faye McNaull and Lynne Nelson, Durham County Extension Master Gardener volunteers.

Tomatoes and Okra: A Match Made in Gumbo
Saturday, March 18th, 10 am to noon.  
Presented by Catherine Urich, Durham County Extension Master Gardener volunteer.

For Garden’s Sake Nursery
9197 NC Hwy 751, Durham NC, 27713.
Requires registration. To register, email or call 919-484-9759

Cold Hardy Vegetables and How to Grow Them
Saturday, February 25th, 10 am to noon. 
Presented by Charles Murphy, Durham County Extension Master Gardener volunteer.

Tomatoes and Okra
Saturday, April 22nd, 10 to 11:30 am.  
Presented by Doug Roach, Durham County Extension Master Gardener volunteer.

Gardening for Pollinators
Saturday, May 6th, 10 to 11:30 am. 
Presented by Darcey Martin and Georganne Sebastian, Durham County Extension Master Gardener volunteers.

Tantalize Your Senses, Grow Herbs and other Edibles in Containers
Saturday, May 27th, 10 to 11 am.  
Presented by Faye McNaull and Lynne Nelson, Durham County Extension Master Gardener volunteers.

Sarah P. Duke Gardens
420 Anderson St.
Requires Registration. Call 919-668-1707 or email
Thursdays, 6:30 to 8 pm.
Carrying On: Garden Maintenance
February 23rd.  
Presented by Kit Flynn, Durham County Extension Master Gardener volunteer.

Tomaato, Tomahhto
April 6th.  
Presented by Charles Murphy, Durham County Extension Master Gardener volunteer.

Buy Healthy Plants and Plant Them Well
April 27th.
Presented by Chris Apple, Durham County Extension Master Gardener volunteer.

Gardening in Durham for Beginners and Transplants: Everything You Need to Succeed
May 11th. 
Presented by Gene Carlone, Durham County Extension Master Gardener volunteer.  

Monday, February 20, 2017

The Bridge Academy and Town & Country Garden Club Host Auction

The Bridge Academy Auction/Luncheon held in Jan. 24, 2017 featured catering and friendly card competition by the Town & Country Garden Club of Durham. President Robin Marin and Holly Davis collaborated with TBA Owner Henry Meguid  for the event. The Bridge Academy ( holds 44 members, many of whom are also T&C Garden Club members. Robin and her husband Jack Marin provided a mix CD favor for each attendee. Photos by the Town & Country Garden Club.

Some of the winners at the TCGC TBA Event.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Art and Air Purifiers: Houseplants are Making a Comeback

Interior designer Sera Hersham-Loftus organized the plants in her London
office like the kids in a school photo: short in front (rosemary, lavender, daisy);
 tall in back (magnolia, kentia palm). “There isn’t one plant overshadowing
another. It’s as simple as that,” she said of the jungle-like design scheme,
featured in “Evergreen.” In addition, she arranged the foliage to allow
 a peekaboo view of a painting. Beyond that, serendipity is the plan,
as vegetation rotates in from the balcony: When the magnolia droops for
want of sunlight, Ms. Hersham-Loftus sends it outside and
hauls in a new garden. Photo by Michael Paul.
By Michael Tortorello
WSJ, Feb. 17, 2017

For many people, houseplants remain stuck in the 1970s, when it was entirely common to macramé a hanger for your 14th Boston fern while listening to Mac Davis 8-tracks and sipping Riunite on ice.

Forty years later, design pros are evangelizing a more considered approach to indoor greenery. A half-dozen new décor books—with titles like “Rooted in Design,” “Urban Jungle” and “Greenteriors”—feature rooms that appear unmistakably ’17 as opposed to ’71 and provide guidance far beyond care and feeding.

What you won’t see on these pages is a static line of houseplants, snoozing on a windowsill like a tabby house cat. The arrangement, shape, and pattern of plants have become integral to a room’s design scheme. A swooping fern does the work of a pattern on a drapery. A stately palm, noted New York designer Frank de Biasi, can “give height and verticality to an otherwise low-ceilinged space.”

Tara Heibel, founder of the Sprout Home plant stores in Chicago and Brooklyn, concurred that statuesque forms catch the eye of her “more fashionable” clients. But she also sells plenty of violets and philodendra, which she said serve as “comfort plants” to younger customers, who associate them with, say, a grandparent’s house.

In the right hands, these new plants don’t languish in foil wrapping like a leftover from the office birthday pool. They’re purposeful parts of a room’s décor, as seen in the interiors shown here, and see a list of designers' top five favorite houseplants:

Friday, February 17, 2017

Croasdaile Garden Club Spring Auction: April 4


The Croasdaile Garden Club will hold its Spring Auction on Tuesday, April 4, 2017 at the Croasdaile Country Club. Event schedule is: 11:00 - Silent Auction; 12:00 - Lunch; 1:00 - Live Auction. Cost is $22 per person. The public is invited.

For details and reservations, contact: Connie O'Neil at 919.886.8494 / Proceeds from the auction support Durham charities.

Virginia Is For Gardeners: NGC Annual Convention, May 18-20

Join the National Garden Club on May 18-20, 2017 for NGC's 88th Annual Convention! The theme of our meeting is "Virginia Is For Gardeners" and meeting location is Richmond, Virginia. Hotel is the Richmond Marriot Downtown.

For more information, details and registration forms (online or printed) see the NGC website:

Sunday, February 12, 2017

BOOKS: Plant: Exploring the Botanical World

Plant: Exploring the Botanical World
Phaidon Editors (Author)
Hardcover: 352 pages
Phaidon Press (September 26, 2016)
ISBN-10: 0714871486
ISBN-13: 978-0714871486

From Amazon...

The ultimate gift for gardeners and art-lovers, featuring 300 of the most beautiful and pioneering botanical images ever

Following in the footsteps of the international bestseller Map: Exploring the World, this fresh and visually stunning survey celebrates the extraordinary beauty and diversity of plants. It combines photographs and cutting-edge micrograph scans with watercolours, drawings, and prints to bring this universally popular and captivating subject vividly to life. Carefully selected by an international panel of experts and arranged in a uniquely structured sequence to highlight thought-provoking contrasts and similarities, this stunning compilation of botanically themed images includes iconic work by celebrated artists, photographers, scientists, and botanical illustrators, as well as rare and previously unpublished images.

CE Plant Indentification Online Course Available March 6

Some species are quick to identify
like the Amorphophallus titanium.
Are you interested in learning more about plant identification?

Learn to identify and appreciate commonly used plants on your own schedule. North Carolina State University is partnering with Longwood Gardens to provide a unique fully online survey of plants. These courses will expose you to plants that can be grown throughout the nation. The use and key identifying characteristics of these plants is conveyed through photo stories, presentations, online fact pages, and beautiful images. Take a look here: These courses will include some favorites and also a few introductions from the research and breeding programs at Longwood Gardens and North Carolina State University.

These courses last for six weeks and are fully online. For more information and to register please use this link: The first course for 2017 begins on March 6!

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Member Spotlight: Designing Lady Pat Cashwell

 Pat Cashwell was the recipient the 2015 Maslon Award
of The Garden Club of North Carolina, Inc.
By J. S. Corser
Editor, Durham Co. Master Gardener

Pat Cashwell is a Southern lady not afraid to get her hands dirty and get to work.

While concurrently working a successful 17-year nursing career, 14 years for the Duke University Medical Center, Pat has stood as an elegant and accomplished tour de force 50 years in North Carolina’s floral industry and accredited design and gardening organizations. Her impact first began with the florist industry, chiefly with late husband Harry F. Cashwell, Jr.’s business Cashwell Florist, Inc., in Durham; then she shared her design and business expertise with local Durham garden clubs and at the state level for The Garden Club of North Carolina, Inc. The highways of North Carolina have also reflected Pat's beautification impact, since she has been judging the NC Department of Transportation Roadside Development Wildflower Program for the last seven years. Her design presence and discerning eye is also an annual occurrence at the North Carolina State Fair flower show and exhibition as a nationally accredited flower show Master Judge.


Pat attributes her paternal grandmother inspiring her to begin growing and designing floral arrangements. Pat's family lived with her grandmother during WWII. After the war her grandmother built a country home in Shelby, NC and had the space to grow gladiola, iris, rosa and roses to make the floral arrangements for her church. Pat would spend weeks in the summer visiting her grandmother and later inherited her grandmother's horticulture and design library as well as the church vases.

"I'm not really a gardener; I don't have a green thumb. I'm more of a designer than a horticulturist," Pat said.

She reminisced that husband Harry did all of the actual gardening as his weekend passion from work. At the time Pat met Harry, he was the organist and choir director of his church and owner of his florist, Davis-Cashwell Florist, later Cashwell Florist. Pat helped run the business from 1963-1986.

Garden Clubs

Initially Pat did not work in her husband's florist, so she created her own design outlet. In 1962 she organized the Colony Park Garden Club in Durham’s eastside neighborhood Colony Park when it was a new subdivision. Pat served as club president and put together many high-profile flower shows receiving blue ribbons for her floral arrangements during the eight years she lived in Colony Park. After leaving the neighborhood in 1970, she put her floral expertise to work for the Heritage Garden Club in Durham and has served as the club’s president, vice-president, secretary, and as perpetual committee chair over the last 42 years. In 2005 Pat began the Heritage Junior Garden Club with fellow club member Margaret McCotter; the Junior Club met through 2015 (and is attempting to recruit new members since Pat and other club members' grandchildren have left Durham for college). With the Heritage Garden Club, Pat continues to work on the club's annual Poinsettia Project for Veterans at the Durham VA Chapel. As with her nursing career, Pat said she really likes to work with veterans, and beautification projects through garden clubs are a way of maintaining that relationship.

Page from Pat's scrapbook featuring 1960s newspaper clippings of the Colony Park Garden Club.
Pat is the fashion model wearing white.

Council & District

Pat has also served as a president, vice-president, secretary and committee chair for the Durham Council of Garden Clubs and as an officer and chair at the District 9 level for The Garden Club of North Carolina, Inc. Pat’s flower shows for the Council included “April in the City” which won the National Garden Clubs award #17-A in 1983. She edited the Council’s annual Yearbook/Membership Directory which also won state award #57 in 1984. (Aside from the Durham Council projects, Pat spearheaded a design project for Duke University’s British American Festival in 1984, when the committee needed floral arrangements for the “Strawberry Tea” event.) As ongoing Council Beautification Chair, she organized a civic improvement/beautification project for the Durham Rescue Mission in 1987 and more recently she was a chair for the 2014 Blue Star Memorial Marker Project with Durham VA Medical Center. On the District level, Pat has served as District 9 Director, Secretary and Treasurer as well as the Chairman of Nominations and Yearbooks.


At the state level for The Garden Club of North Carolina, Inc., Pat was Chairman of the Organization Study Committee and the Garden Therapy Committee and a member of numerous other committees. She was appointed Editor of the North Carolina Gardener for two terms. Currently Pat is completing her 7th year as Chairman of the Roadside Development Committee which judges the annual DOT Wildflower Program. In 2015, Pat received the prestigious Maslin Award, a top individual award for years of service to The Garden Club of North Carolina, Inc..

Flower Show Judge

Pat became a Nationally Accredited Flower Show Judge in four years by 1992 and became a Master Judge in 1994. Pat is a member of the North Carolina Judges Council and is a very active member of the Piedmont East Judges Club. She has been an active flower show Master Judge for the North Carolina State Fair floral exhibitions and Co-Chaired the 2016 GCNC Annual Meeting Flower Show, "Let the Music Play." Pat's own floral designs have won numerous blue ribbons and accolades. She also exhibited at the 2015 North Carolina Museum of Art "Art in Bloom" event in Raleigh.

Honored Life Member

 Lastly, through her 50 years of executive board contributions and tireless passion for beautification and design projects in Durham and around North Carolina, Pat has been honored with life memberships, including a Life Member of the South Atlantic Region and National Garden Clubs, Inc., and a Life Member of The Garden Club of North Carolina, Inc. 

Friday, February 3, 2017

Durham Council of Garden Clubs Business Meeting: Feb. 7

The Durham Council of Gardens Clubs will meet Tuesday, February 7 at 10 a.m. at
the John Sprunt Hill House, 900 S Duke St, Durham, North Carolina 27707.
Committee Chairs and Club representatives will  give their reports.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

February/March Calendar of Triangle Gardening Programs

Gardening Basics—Using Science to Grow Better Plants  will be taught by Bryce Lane at the J.C. Raulston Arboretum,
Mondays, February 6 through March 27, 6:30–8:30 p.m. Photo by the JC Raulston Arboretum.

Sarah P. Duke Gardens
420 Anderson St., Durham, NC. 
Please call 919-668-1707 to register.

I Need a Plan: Garden Fundamentals - Create a Bird-Friendly Garden
Tuesday, Feb. 7, 6:30-9 p.m.
Course meets for 2 sessions
Saturday, Feb. 18, 9:30-11:30 a.m.
Course meets for 3 sessions
Tuesday, Feb. 21, 6-9 p.m.
Course meets for 4 sessions
Wednesday, Feb. 22, 3:30-6 p.m.
Course meets for 3 sessions
Tuesday, Feb. 28, 2:30-4 p.m.

Art and Nature: Artwork Inspired by the Doris Duke Center Gardens
Saturday, March 18, 9 a.m. to Wednesday, March 22, 4 p.m.

JC Raulston Arboretum
Ruby C. McSwain Education Center, JC Raulston Arboretum
4415 Beryl Road, Raleigh, NC.

Propagation Workshop
JC Raulston Arboretum Staff
Saturday, February 4, 9–3 p.m.

Gardening Basics—Using Science to Grow Better Plants
Bryce Lane, Alumni Distinguished Undergraduate Professor Emeritus and Lecturer Emeritus, Department of Horticultural Science, NC State University
Mondays, February 6 through March 27, 6:30–8:30 p.m.

Plantsmen's Tour: "Behind the Scenes: JCRA Nursery and Horticulture Field Lab"
Lizzi Lathers, Research Technician
Tuesday, Feb. 7, 1–2:30 p.m.

Friends of the Arboretum Lecture: "Bald is Beautiful: Working and Creating a Beautiful Winter Landscape"
Greg Paige, Arboretum Curator, Bartlett Tree Research Laboratories & Arboretum
Thursday, Feb. 9, 7:30 p.m.

North American Rock Garden Society (Piedmont Chapter) Lecture : "Wildflowers of Northwestern Colorado"
Tim Alderton, Research Technician
Saturday, Feb. 11, 10 a.m.

Duke Garden Forum will feature a program on "Ergonomic Gardening and Tools"
Tuesday, Feb. 21, 6:30-8 p.m.

Photography Walk: "Wide Angle Photography"
Susan Bailey, Susan Bailey Photography
Thursday, Feb. 16, 2 p.m.

Winter Symposium: "Garden Divas"
Saturday, Feb. 18, 8 a.m.

Plantsmen's Tour: "Bulb Madness"
Mark Weathington, Director
Tuesday, March 7, 1–2:30 p.m.

Friends of the Arboretum Lecture: "Experiences Teaching at Pyongyang University of Science and Technology in North Korea"
Ted Stephens, Nurseries Caroliniana
Thursday, March 9, 7:30–9 p.m.

Introduction to Insect Identification: The Good, the Bad, and the Buggy
John Meyer, Ph.D., Emeritus Professor, Department of Entomology, NC State University
Tuesdays, March 14 through April 11, 6:30-8:30 p.m.

North American Rock Garden Society (Piedmont Chapter) Lecture:  "Creating a New Ecosystem: the Development of a Piedmont Prairie"
Annabel Renwick, Sarah P. Duke Gardens

Saturday, March 18, 10–11:30 a.m.
Part of Raulston Blooms!
Friday, March 31, 106 p.m.  
Saturday, April 1, 94 p.m.

North Carolina Botanical Gardens
100 Old Mason Farm Road, Chapel Hill, NC.
Sunday, Feb. 12, 2-3:30 p.m.
Get Ready for Spring: A Vegetable Gardening Workshop
Event is Full: Accepting Wait List Registrations
Sunday, Feb. 19, 1-3 p.m. 
Thursday, Feb. 23, Noon-1 p.m.
Sunday, March 5, 1:30-3 p.m.

Plant Communities of North Carolina
Thursday, March 9, 1-5 p.m.
Saturday, March 18, 9:30-11:30 p.m.
Saturday, March 18, 1-4 p.m.
Tuesday, March 21, 3-4:30 p.m.

Therapeutic Horticulture: An Introductory Workshop
Saturday, March 25, 8:15 a.m.- 5 p.m.  
Sunday, March 26, 2-4 p.m.
NC Cooperative Extension
Tuesday, Feb. 21, 6:30-8 p.m.
Sarah P. Duke Gardens
Weeds -- Friend or Foe?
Sunday, March 5, 3-4:00 p.m.
South Regional Library, 4505 S. Alston Avenue, Durham, North Carolina 27713.
Register: 919-560-7410. 

Pollinators-a-Plenty: A Look at Hundreds of Pollinators Aiding Food and Flower Production in North Carolina
Sunday, March 12, 3-4 p.m. 
South Regional Library, 4505 S. Alston Avenue, Durham, North Carolina 27713.
Register: 919-560-7410.