Local garden club takes home state award

Published 1:00 am Friday, April 20, 2012

The Openwood Plantation Garden Club took home the 2011 Conservation Education Award at the 83rd annual Garden Clubs of Mississippi convention, Wednesday and Thursday at the Vicksburg Convention Center.

The award is given by the Mississippi Association of Conservation Districts to honor the club that best promotes landscaping to conserve resources.

“We try to stress all areas of conservation,” said Openwood member Miriam Jabour, citing recycling, tree planting and providing education on invasive species, composting and planting to attract butterflies and other pollinators when the club holds plant sales.

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Special recognition was given to Bertha Kolb for 50 years of garden club membership.

The convention, which drew more than 225 gardeners and officials from 137 clubs statewide, included workshops led by City of Vicksburg landscaper Jeff Richardson and Vicksburg National Military Park natural resources manager Virginia DuBowy, and tours of Linden Plantation and Gardens, the Bovina home of Bryan and Joy Brabston and Vicksburg’s Bazsinsky House.

Jabour chaired the planning, with Janis Koestler as co-chairman. Local garden clubs include Openwood, Morning Gardeners, Green Hills and Hester Flowers.

Openwood also received a first place Frances VanLandingham Stewart Award for Jabour’s biweekly garden column in The Vicksburg Post; a first in environmental education; and a third in food gardening. Morningstar Gardeners won a first in butterfly conservation.

The Garden Clubs of Mississippi, Inc. is a member of the National Garden Clubs Inc., comprising of 6,218 clubs dedicated to education and the promotion of gardening, floral design, and civic and environmental responsibility.