Monday, November 1, 2010

Volunteer Road Trip to Andrew Crawford's studio, GPC Garden

Two staff members and some of our great volunteers squished into a van and headed out to Atlanta last week to tour the Georgia Perimeter College Botanical Garden in Decater and visit artist Andrew Crawford at his studio. We felt right at home at the Georgia Perimeter College Botanical Garden after the first volunteer we met told us she was in the first graduating class in the Certificate in Native Plants program at the State Botanical Garden, then the second volunteer told us she received her Master Gardener training here. George Sanko led us on a walk through the extensive fern collection – in fact, he told us it is the largest fern collection in the world. Then we went into the classroom for a talk on botany. We felt lucky to be there, since George Sanko, who is such an expert on ferns, said he would be retiring next year. There is so much that we can learn from him.

We were pretty crowded in that van before, but with creative packing we managed to fit in many ferns, palms and other plants before heading over to see Andrew. Gardeners just can’t walk away from a plant sale.

Andrew Crawford is working on the first art exhibit that we will have within the State Botanical Garden’s display gardens. Two of the six gates that will be on display are completed and wonderful. A couple weeks ago he brought a large stainless steel sunflower gate to the Garden, with a video crew and professional photographer there to document the installation and the amazing gate. He showed us a prototype of an ear of corn for his next gate, then explained and demonstrated how it was designed and made. The silk, kernels and husk are so realistic that they look like they were cast from a real ear of corn. Since a picture really is worth a thousand words, let’s let them tell you about these gates…

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