The Adams Park Library is officially on the map! Garden #264 on the Rosalynn Carter Butterfly Pollinator Garden Trail to be exact. This July, Georgia Public Libraries were invited to participate in this environmental awareness program funded in part by the Georgia Farm Bureau, Georgia Public Broadcasting, and the University of Georgia (UGA) Extension. Once the open invitation was presented and approved by Fulton County Library Director Gayle Holloman, Adams Park Branch Manager Vickie Beene called on her gardening friends and volunteers for assistance to help meet the quick July 15th deadline. “We could not pass up this opportunity to be a part of this project. We converted our existing herb garden space into a pollinator garden with the help of our volunteers. I believe the Adams Park community will be excited to learn that we are helping to bring butterflies to our library building. We’ve already seen different butterflies flying about after putting some of the perennials in the ground. The most surprising and funniest incident after planting the Salvia plant was watching staff catch the hummingbird that flew into our library when we opened the doors. Now THAT was certainly proof positive that pollinators make a difference,” said Beene.
While the Adams Park staff was shocked to encounter nature firsthand, other seasoned gardeners were shocked for a different reason. After former First Lady Rosalynn Carter learned how over-farming impacted the reproduction and migration patterns of the growing endangered monarch butterflies, she jumped into action. In February 2013, Mrs. Carter planted select native plants to attract monarchs and other pollinator insects in her backyard. With the spearheading assistance of a fellow Plains neighbor, Annette Wise asked other garden lovers to follow suit. One homeowner ignited a neighborhood block, then a church, a nearby town, and eventually cities across the country. But participants in the program don’t have to have a large space. In fact, something as simple as creating space on a patio or hanging a flowering plant on your balcony could increase the neighborhood’s biodiversity. This is perhaps why the Rosalynn Carter Butterly Pollinator Graden Trail continues to blossom. Today, there are over 1,500 participating private gardens, with nearly 300 of them open for the public to visit.
So…. until you plant your own pollinator garden or ever want to participate as a citizen scientist in annual Pollinator Census events, stop by the Adams Park Library to watch nature in action. And when you are here, pick up a book, flip through a magazine or talk with other visiting library patrons as we resume offering in-person gardening programs later this fall.
For more information about the Rosalynn Carter Butterfly Trail, visit Rosalynn Carter Butterfly Trail – Beginning at President Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter's home in Plains, Georgia with a habitat for monarch butterflies.
For information about our gardening programs throughout the year, visit www.fulcolibrary.org.