Garden Club of Alabama District I holds fall meeting
The Garden Club of Alabama held its District I Fall Meeting at the Weatherford Center in Red Bay Oct. 16. The Red Bay Garden Club served as the host club. Seventy members from North Alabama attended the meeting, including members from the Russellville Cultura Garden Club, the Waco Rural Garden Club and the Red Bay Garden Club.
Carolyn Ellinger, District I GCA director, presided over the meeting. Charlene Fancher, mayor of Red Bay and member of the Red Bay Garden Club, presented the welcoming remarks to the “City of Hospitality.”
State officers and chairmen, as well as former state presidents and district directors presented reports, as well as recognizing National Life and Deep South life members and State life members of the Garden Clubs of the GCA.
Mike Ezzell, of Rogersville, Ala., was the guest speaker. He is a retiree from the University of North Alabama where he worked in the environmental education department. He presented an interesting program about the native plants of Alabama.
Alabama has some of the greatest native plant biodiversity in the United States with more than 3,000 different native plant species and ranks #9 in overall plant diversity in the United States.
Alabama’s native plants are the backbone of the state’s ecosystem and were here long before the first human settlers.
Ezell shared a video that highlighted some of the best-known native plants that deserve a place in Alabamians’ hearts and gardens. Some of these included the Climbing Aster, American Bluehearts, Fire Pink, Many-Flowered Grass Pink, Alabama Azalea, Oak leaf Hydrangea and Eastern Columbine.
“Every Alabamian should know that these plants are part of the state’s natural heritage, and they’re much better choices for your garden than non-natives,” Ezzell said.
The business session included a roll call of clubs; approval of spring district minutes; treasurer’s report; reports from council and federation clubs; ways and means reports; approval of the 2023-2024 budget, as well as plans and projects for the 2023-2024 year.
Weatherford Center caterers served a delicious luncheon. Several door prizes were given at the close of the meeting. Accolades went to the Red Bay Garden Club for their fantastic job hosting the fall district meeting, with special thanks extended to Mary Kathryn Wiggins and Diane Russell for their hard work and Missy Brandon of “Wild Flowers” for the beautiful flower decorations.