The Learning Garden

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N.C. Cooperative Extension, Henderson County Center has recently seen some upgrades. You may have noticed the new sign out front of the office earlier this year. FCS agent Abigail Pierce and I installed a new native flower bed around the sign. Most of the plants are medicinal in some form and will provide critical habitat and food for wildlife. While doing all this, the plants will also add beauty to the learning garden landscape.

Henderson County Extension sign

Henderson County Center sign before planting and mulch.

Ornamental landscapes in the past have been comprised of non-native plants that humans deemed desirable. Often today, we take that same connotation along with the term ornamental landscapes. Native plants can also be a gorgeous addition to any garden. These plants add flowers and nice foliage and provide vital habitat and food for native wildlife. In our native flowerbed, we have Asclepias tuberosa, Schizachyrium scoparium, and Achillea millefolium, among other things. All these plants will provide many things for the ecosystem within our learning garden. Reframing what we deem ‘ornamental’ will ultimately lead us to having more ecologically friendly landscapes.

Henderson County Extension sign upgrade

Henderson County Center sign with new native plants and mulch.

There has been a lot going on in the learning garden. We recently had a work day. Special thanks to the NC State Extension Master Gardener℠ volunteers who came out to help! We divided plants, pruned junipers, and spread mulch throughout the gardens. Overall, it was a very successful workday, and we look forward to having more in the future.